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Remains of 16 Indians to Be Moved

November 26, 1986

Ventura County supervisors voted Tuesday to appropriate more than $80,000 to move the remains of 16 Chumash Indians from an ancient burial ground in a flood control channel near Point Mugu and rebury them in Thousand Oaks.

The board acted after federal officials warned that the county would lose $785,000 in federal flood control aid unless it protected the remains from being washed out to sea in the runoff from winter rains, officials said.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency informed the board last week that the county will not receive reimbursement for work on the Calleaguas Creek channel unless the cemetery is evacuated and the remains are reburied in accordance with federal regulations on the treatment of Indian burials.

The board voted 3 to 2 to spend $80,720 to hire archeologists from California State University, Northridge, to examine the site. The money will also cover the expense of reburying the skeletons of 16 Chumash Indians that were found in a routine archeological inspection of the area in July, Supervisor Edwin A. Jones said.

Representatives of the Candelaria American Indian Council and the Ventureno band of the Chumash have agreed to the reburial plan. Others, identifying themselves as representatives of the Coastal Band of the Chumash, told the board, however, that they oppose it because their religion prohibits the disturbance of their ancestors' graves.

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