Dana Adobe plans disrespects native culture

August 6, 2012


On Tuesday, August 7 the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors will make a decision on a land use ordinance amendment and mitigated negative declaration applied for by the Dana Adobe Nipomo Amigos.

The Northern Chumash Tribal Council (NCTC) and the Chumash Nation is opposed to the land use ordinance and mitigated negative declaration (MND) for the following reasons.

Sometime in early 2010 the Northern Chumash agreed to work with the Dana Adobe as equal partners to facilitate the procurement of a State Parks National Education Fund grant. After almost a year of working together in March of 2011 the Dana Adobe was awarded the State Parks NEF grant for approximately $3 million.

The NCTC Chumash village portion was $240,000 to facilitate the Chumash Community to build the Chumash Village.  Almost immediately NCTC went from a “Partner” to general public, and has been left out in the cold in the decision making process, the Dana Adobe has refused to “pay attention” to any of NCTC comments or suggestions concerning the significant cultural resources on the property since they were awarded the grant.

The Dana Adobe hired new people and new design company and they redesigned a new much larger project, it went from an education center to an event center with over 50 events per year. This new project will increase the cumulative impacts to significant cultural resources on the property.

NCTC was never officially noticed according to CEQA about the LUO/MNA and we are on the county list of stakeholders. The LUO/MND was not notice properly and therefore should not be allowed to go forward.

The County of San Luis Obispo in March 2012 waived all permitting fees; the county staff is supporting the LUO/MND for this project, which means the tax payers of San Luis Obispo County are paying for the proposed destruction of a sacred Chumash Native American site.

The Dana Adobe sets on a significant cultural resources and 29 pages of mitigation measures will not solve or mitigate the resources on the property only an EIR will work for the resources that are present, with new evidence submitted to the administrative record of much larger Native American presents than was known before at the Dana Adobe.

The Chumash Nation and NCTC are extremely upset by the disrespectful treatment by the current Dana Adobe for all the good will, and hard work the Chumash Nation and NCTC put forth for this project. At this time NCTC feels that the Dana Adobe does not deserve the grant funds and they should go to someone more deserving. The Northern Chumash have many better educational projects to work on with caring, respectful organizations. NCTC does not need to work with people who have in NCTC’s opinion misrepresented their intent in a deceitful manner.

Please send a message to the Board of Supervisors, stop this abuse of Native American Culture, no on LUO/MND.



  1. Booty JuJu says:

    The usual greed under the cover of culture.

    (6) 8 Total Votes - 7 up - 1 down
    • R.Hodin says:

      Plenty of greed to go around. The agency issuing the state grant for the adobe project specifically cited the inclusion of a native american cultural element as key to winning the grant. So the local Chumash (NCTC) were used in the effort of the adobe group to get state funding. What’s so surprising about residual bitterness from the local Chumash about being taken advantage of yet again? Sure, it’s easy to say they’re being greedy, but this is a tribe without federal recognition or assistance, unlike the Santa Ynez band.

      (4) 8 Total Votes - 6 up - 2 down
    • R.Hodin says:

      “The usual greed under the cover of culture.”

      = White Man’s Way

      (-1) 9 Total Votes - 4 up - 5 down
    • SLODown76 says:

      The interest of the Chumash Peoples has always been to protect the cultural sites located on the property. The same as the Miwoks/Ohlone and their protests at the Sangorea Te (Glenn Cove)(Google it) site in the bay area.

      (1) 3 Total Votes - 2 up - 1 down
  2. felicitysfarm says:

    The true history of the natives demise must be told. This country and the culture that existed here for thousand of years was obliterated in a short period of time by the Missions/Rancheros overgrazing, harvesting the oak timber to create grazing land and to make charcol for the short lived steamship trade and the steam engines trains. The landscape never recovered and the natives were driven inland and angry.
    Drought arrived in 1864, cattle and sheep were herded over the cliffs of Pt Sal. They couldnt waste the lead bullets on the herd so they drove the stock away from mucking up the water holes over the cliff.
    This was a verdant oakland savanna with abundant wildlife game and plants before the arrival of the Europeans. This land was so rich with food that the natives didnt cultivate crops, they were hunter/fisherman/ gathers. They had a complex democratic social order.
    I ask you to remember our ancestors, their way of life. The Dana Adobe needs to respect the land that gave them so much wealth. The Rancho period was short and very destructive to a very special culture.
    The Adobe started out to be a “park for the people” and now is a wine tasting fund raiser down a dead end road flanked by eucalyptus and grasslands. Perfect fire tradegy. It is no place for an event center until they fix the deadend road. Its narrow a fire hazard.
    It doesnt seem like the park is for the people so much as its for upscale fund raisers. A friend of mine was stopped at the entrance once and asked for a”donation” of 5 bucks to enter. She had 5 kids that’s 30 bucks? I didnt see her there last Sat.
    Park for the people? Who’s in it for the money?
    Please tone down their dreams of grandure, This was a simple/yet complicated life early California, an event center will ruin the rural rustic feeling. If the neighborhood must be exposed to wine tasting cowboy affairs, we’d like to see equal time for the native tribes.

    (4) 20 Total Votes - 12 up - 8 down
    • SLODown76 says:

      What us Chumash envisioned would have brought a natural balance to what Dana was proposing.

      (3) 5 Total Votes - 4 up - 1 down
  3. inquirista says:

    Maybe the Dana folk don’t want to deal with these specific organizations.
    From what I understand, the groups mentioned in this opinion piece are controversial in that some of the members and leadership cannot, or will not, demonstrate how they are tied to known Chumash through genealogy. As far as I know, any tribe across the country requires genealogical data to approve membership.

    (7) 13 Total Votes - 10 up - 3 down
    • SLODown76 says:

      inquirista, those working on the Dana project are of Chumash lineage.

      (2) 4 Total Votes - 3 up - 1 down
    • felicitysfarm says:

      Very hard to prove lineage. The Californios took care to enact a law that took only one yr to completely obliterate this culture. After introducing alcolhol to the culture and even paying them in booze the state inacted a law that any drunken native could be inscripted into slavery and owned by the ranchero. Chumash ain’t dumb they learned spanish and magically the Chumash disappeared.

      (2) 4 Total Votes - 3 up - 1 down
  4. reason says:

    No similar claims or demands were made in response to the sewer plant expansion a few hundred feet away. Could it be because there was no grant money to be held hostage?

    This smells like an old-fashioned shakedown.

    (14) 24 Total Votes - 19 up - 5 down
    • SLODown76 says:

      reason, do you have evidence to back up the allegations you are making?

      (0) 4 Total Votes - 2 up - 2 down
    • felicitysfarm says:

      The sewer plant wasnt a fund raising group of elites. The sewer plant was needed for infrastructure of the people. Maybe thats the reason they didnt object. The Dana is using state funds to tell history in their own way. We dont need tax payers funds supporting this one sided vision of California history

      (4) 6 Total Votes - 5 up - 1 down
  5. Jack L says:

    As one Native American once said………”white man speaks with forked tongue”.

    (2) 34 Total Votes - 18 up - 16 down

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