November 28, 2001
Mr. Bill Bush, Arkansas Geological Commission
Mr. Chris Boudreaux, Conway Corporation
Ms. Susan Cromwell, Fayetteville Public School District
Mr. Randy Jones, First Electric Cooperative Corporation
Mr. Fred Limp, CAST (by conference call)
Mr. Mike McGibbony, Department of Information Systems
Ms. Shirley Sandlin, Benton County Assessor
Mr. Earl Smith, Ark Soil & Water Conservation Commission
Ms. Phyllis Smith, U of A at Little Rock
Ms. Suzanne Wiley, U of A Cooperative Extension Service
Mr. Jubal Smith, Entergy Corporation, Inc.
Mr. Jim Wells, Wellsco Graphics
LIB Advisory Panel
Mr. Mike Daniels, U of A Cooperative Extension Service
Mr. Randy Everett, North Arkansas Electric Cooperative
Ms. Tracy Ford, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
Mr. Rodney Larsen, Central Arkansas Planning & Development District
Mr. Paul Medley for Dr. Bob Weih, Spatial Analysis Laboratory, UAM School of Forest Resources
Mr. Mike Mitchell, GIS Users Forum
Ms. Dorothy Rhodes, Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department
Mr. Brian Stewart, Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department
Mr. Shelby Johnson, State Geographic Information Coordinator
Mr. Learon Dalby, GIS Specialist, Arkansas Geographic Information Office
Mr. Kelly Boyd, Governors Technology Policy Advisor
Mr. Randall Bradford, State Executive CIO
Mr. Yancey Reynolds, Reynolds Real Estate
The meeting was called to order. The minutes of the last meeting of October 9, 2001, were approved unanimously.
GIS Infrastructure Funding
Suzanne Wiley announced to the Board that pursuant to the provisions of Act 1691 of 2001, the Governor has released funds for the statewide GIS infrastructure of $420,000. She thanked the members of the Board, Shelby Johnson, Kelly Boyd, and Doug Elkins of the Department of Information Systems for their work and support in getting the legislation passed and the funds released. She explained that this will allow GeoStor to continue in its development.
Statement by the Governors Technology Policy Advisor
Suzanne next introduced Kelly Boyd, Governors Technology Policy Advisor. Mr. Boyd spoke to the Board regarding the importance of the GIS infrastructure for the state. He explained that in appointing the Board members, much thought was given to what skills the members would bring to the Board. Mr. Boyd thanked the members for being willing to serve and said that Governor Huckabee sent his thanks as well. He talked about the shortage of funding for programs and challenged the Board and the Arkansas Geographic Information Office to seek additional revenue streams to assist in supporting valuable GIS projects for the state. He said that he and Governor Huckabee are very impressed with the good work that is being done. Mr. Boyd said that he and the Governor will work with the State CIO to ensure that the rest of the country becomes aware of the innovative GIS projects that are going on in Arkansas.
Report of the Arkansas Geographic Information Coordinator
Shelby Johnson said that the National Digital Ortho Program and the National Aerial Photography Program steering committee meeting was hosted in Little Rock. These committees are made up of all the major federal agencies that support the NAPP and NDOP programs, including the USGS, Farm Services Agency, National Resource Conservation Service, the Bureau of Land Management, Farm Statistics Agency, FEMA, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. Forest Service, all primarily agencies of the Department of the Interior.
Shelby explained that part of the reason for hosting this meeting was for the committee to come and see what has been done with the digital ortho and GeoStor project in Arkansas. He said it was a very good meeting and that the federal agencies left with a new understanding of what is going on in Arkansas. He hopes that this will assist in finding federal funding for ongoing and future projects.
Digital Cadastral Study
Shelby recounted the 2001 legislation that directs the Arkansas Geographic Information Office to study issues surrounding the implementation of digital parcel records for the state. He said that the study is being combined with the federal I-Team Initiative by the Office of Management & Budget, and that a Cadastral I-Team has been formed to create a business plan on critical layers that are needed at the state level. A meeting was held and representatives from the Assessment Coordination Office, various state agencies, assessors offices, and GIS consultants attended. There was discussion of standards for cadastral mapping and other issues. That group determined to conduct a statewide survey of all the county assessors to determine mapping status in those offices. The results will be reported at the next meeting on December 13. He pointed out that there are some assessors offices who complete no mapping at all, so this raises questions about how to build a digital cadastre if there are no maps to begin with.
School District Boundary Dataset for the State
Shelby explained that this is a project in response to the ruling handed down by Judge Kilgore that the school funding formula in the state is not adequate and is not equitable. Part of the Blue Ribbon Commission is a subcommittee called the Structure Subcommittee. Shelby outline how this subcommittee is looking at the structure of the school districts and one possible recommendation from them may be some sort of restructuring of the school districts. Shelby said they gave a presentation to the subcommittee and Senator Jim Argue to show how GIS techniques can be applied to restructuring those districts by looking at bus times and travel times and student population demographics. Shelby and Phyllis Smith were called back to give a second demonstration to show the poor quality of the current digital data that is available for school districts, which is based on the Bureau of Census Tiger files and the boundaries are somewhat inaccurate.
Shelby said that the Secretary of States Office is now involved through their redistricting efforts because those school district boundaries form the boundaries for school board elections. Through a three-way effort, it appears that the Geographic Information Office will be providing some technical support to the Secretary of States Office, so they can improve the boundaries. The Department of Education is working with the Secretary of States Office to try to get the school district dataset improved.
Shelby said that another reason this issue is important is because school district boundaries form a taxing jurisdiction that is dealt with by the Public Service Commission. He added that his office is working to make sure the data is developed with good metadata documentation for eventually getting it loaded into GeoStor.
Learon Dalby gave a recap of the process of getting the GPS Standards adopted as a Rule and Regulation by the Legislative Subcommittee of Administrative Rules and Regulations on November 15, 2001. He pointed out that these Standards must be reviewed in the future on a regular basis to reflect changes in technology.
Arkansas Centerline File
Learon talked about the I-Team that will be developing this project, which will be a large-scale street file of 10 meters or less. It turns out that there are many uses for a large-scale centerline street file. A meeting was held in September hosted by Arkansas One Call and a second meeting was held in October, where discussions were held regarding what would be needed in a centerline street file. A third meeting was held in November to refine a draft document, and from that meeting it was decided to do a couple of pilot projects.
These are the actions that need to be taken:
Take AHTD data and warp it to second generation DOQQs and add attributes to see how it will line up
GPS all the roads in two DOQQs, one in the Delta and one in the mountains
Digitize the roads off the new DOQQ using heads-up digitizing methodologies
Overlay Tiger on top of it to see how it falls in
Explore ways of maintaining the vector and the attributes, which will be challenge
Distribution of the updated files; place in GeoStor
Put in mechanisms to ensure updating and maintenance
Utilization of metadata
Learon said that he hopes this project will be finished by early 2002, and added that the primary goal of the pilot study is to determine an efficient way to develop the centerline file and its attributes. He went on to explain that there are interesting federal activities that tie into the Arkansas centerline file, such as the Tiger modernization program.
Learon explained that the primary focus is the working document and once it get settled, then theyll have a good idea of how to develop the I-Team plan. He said that the membership of the I-Team is fairly broad and that they plan to expand it to include more local representation like 911 coordinators and city or county people.
Arkansas Digital Orthophotography Project
Learon Dalby gave a recap of the ADOP project up to the current time. He said that large portions of South Arkansas have been QCd, CDs are being burned, and DOQQs will be in the hands of all of the cooperators by December. He said that several horizontal accuracy assessments have resulted to be at five meters. The next area they want to check for accuracy will be in Northwest Arkansas. The horizontal accuracy results for each DOQQ will be placed on the AGIO web site. He said that he hopes to get assistance from some of the educational institutions to do some of the accuracy assessments.
Learon explained that 970 of the Arkansas DOQQs have been accepted by the USGS, and that 2,628 remain in production at Pixxures. He said that all of the DOQQs that have been sent so far have either been accepted or small areas that were bad are being reprocessed, and there doesnt seem to be any major problems.
Learon explained that there are some areas to be reflown to finish the project and January 15, 2002, is the flight time. All film will be QCd by the USGS prior to flight season so as to know exactly what needs to be reflown. Shelby Johnson added that Northwest Geomatics will do the flying with one of their fastest planes and that they plan to fly as much as possible during the first available window, and in order to get this project wrapped up, the plan is to get film directly to Jay Story to immediately QC it to check for rejected film. Shelby said that it will take one clear week to finish flying.
Fred Limp said that there have been over 14,000 datasets downloaded and the number seems to be doubling each quarter. He explained that because many files are merged together to make seamless coverage for the state, the number of downloads is potentially misleading. Fred said that there are about 350 datasets but that they actually reflect about what would be about 13,500 different data files. So the 14,000 dataset downloads multiplied by 10 would more accurately reflect a comparable usage number as compared to data file downloads from another source.
They have the 1990 black and white DOQQs. They are doing contrast and balancing to create seamless 1990 statewide black and white DOQQs. CAST will be done in about two weeks with this work and it will be added to GeoStor. Fred explained that theyve set a limit to file downloads on raster data to 625MB, which is one CD in size. He went on to explain that of the top 25 datasets being downloaded, DRGs are the number one download, and that data from the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department are in the top downloads.
Fred said that they will add CIRs as they become available. These can be moved quickly into GeoStor after the project cooperators receive their copies.
Fred said next that with the help from FGDC, they are expanding the capacity of GeoStor in two directions. One is that GeoStor will become an OGC compliant web map server. This means that any OGC compliant web map application can connect directly to GeoStor without downloading. Fred said they will also be adding Feature Serving capacity with support from FGDC, which means that compliant clients such as ESRI can connect directly to GeoStor without downloading data. He said that these are technical capacities and will probably be available sometime in January or a little later.
Fred next explained that CAST has been contact by the State of New York Office of Technology and they are very interested in the GeoStor approach and architecture. He said that CAST is working with them to give them information, and he thinks New York will move to adopt the GeoStor architecture. Fred added that this is something of which everyone should be proud, that Arkansas is developing a system that New York and others are adopting.
The next thing Fred talked about was that the architecture designed into GeoStor was that it wasnt simply a data distribution system but is the enterprise architecture to which a variety of applications can connect. He said in that regard they will be making public an economic development information system that has been developed with USGS support and expands upon the work of DINA, the Economic Development Commission, and others. This system uses mapping approaches to provide economic development information around the state. The advantage is that it offers easy menu access to users for the data.
Fred Limp next talked about the RAPID project and explained that 450 datasets have been downloaded from GeoStor. He said that AmericaView is interested in having states participate and that it would be appropriate for the Arkansas Geographic Information Office, acting as the representative of the LIB, to formally participate in the AmericanView program. Fred explained that formal participation would mean a dramatic lowering of price for the acquisition of satellite imagery, from $600 per scene to approximately half of that. He also pointed out that satellite imagery would be available within hours of acquisition instead of within weeks or months of its acquisition.
Fred explained that it would need to be determined as to who wants data and how much do they want, and how many participants there would be. He described that a statewide image acquisition would be about $3800 and this would be much cheaper if it was split between cooperators. Fred said that the AmericaView group is meeting in Cleveland on January 26th, 2002, and if the LIB has a plan in place by then it would be appropriate to talk to them at that point.
One last comment Fred made was that Landsat 5 and MODUS data would be available through AmericaView program, and that there are two new satellites (Hyperion and the Advanced Land Imager) that would also be available. The MODUS is the replacement for the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometry (AVHRR), 250 meter data that is good for regional mapping and frequent changes. Hyperion is a hyperspectral sensor which is 30 meter on the ground and around 250 spectral bands. The Advanced Land Imager is very much like the current Landsat systems but improved in quality and does automatic atmospheric corrections as the images are acquired. Fred explained that the Hyperion and Advanced Land Imager acquisitions would be more expensive at $2000 per scene.
Fred recommended that the LIB determine what level of interest there is around the state. He said that to enter into an agreement with AmericaView, the purchase of one scene is required at $380, but that with more cooperators everyone could get more information at a lower cost and quicker processing time than by using traditional approaches.
Suzanne Wiley explained that the National Mapping Project is the federal effort to get all of the USGS data online. What is being proposed is being able to get changes updated on-line within seven days. Suzanne explained that they are looking at GeoStor technology to achieve this and have met with Fred Limp to talk about this.
Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department
Shelby Johnson has been working with AHTD regarding the possibility of having them link to GeoStor and do editing directly in the GeoStor database. He explained that this could also relate directly to the Centerline project.
Suzanne Wiley said that the GIS Users Conference from October 9 to 11 was extremely successful. Phyllis Smith explained that this was the 10th year anniversary and that there were approximately 225 attendees. She said the preconference workshop were very well attended by 125 people, and that 12 vendors participated. Phyllis said that the breakout sessions were very good and that several subcommittees were formed.
Suzanne Wiley explained that they held a RAPID coordination meeting and Bruce Gorham gave a presentation to about 15 people. She said there was also an I-Team coordination meeting with Ron Matzner of FGDC and OMB, and there was discussion regarding federal funding.
Shelby Johnson added that at the last NSGIC meeting that he was elected to the board, and that the board has designated Shelby, Stu Kirkpatrick from Montana, and Bill Burgess from Maryland be representatives to NSGIC to FGDC, OMB, and Ron Matzner with the I-Team initiative. Shelby said that there may be some funding for I-Team initiatives, get the business plans written, and pull the states together to work on hot topics. He further explained that these efforts will dovetail with the Federal One Stop project by Homeland Security and FGDC.
Suzanne Wiley said that there was an Education Panel at the GIS Users Conference and they received a lot of feedback from across the state on GPS remote sensing education. She said that out of that feedback came the creation of a GIS certification subcommittee that Mark Warner and Bob Weih agreed to co-chair. They will work on getting some more subcommittee members and will report to the LIB on their progress on exploring how to do GPS certification and who will be required to have certification.
Suzanne Wiley said that several LIB committees tried to meet at the GIS Users Conference. The Electronic Plat Filing and Parcel Mapping Committee met and Randy Jones passed out their report to the Board. Randy said that there was debate regarding the intellectual property of surveys. He explained that a professional surveyor is required to file a copy of the plat in the circuit clerks office in the county in which it was performed, and they file a copy of the plat in the State Surveyors Office. Randy said that over the last few years, there has been a lot of talk about electronic plat filing and how that might simplify the filing process and how it might support the public in access of that information. He said that surveyors feel that some of the information is proprietary to the owner of the property and the surveyor, which has to be worked out. Randy explained that although the information is of public nature, being recorded in the courthouse and the State Surveyors Office, a lot of the discussion revolves around the ease of access to the public that would be made through the internet.
Randy said that the ASPS has a committee that is working on the surveyors side of the electronic plat filing issues. He said he will speak at the next meeting in December and that hopefully the surveyors can be brought on board to take the lead in getting the pilot project going.
Kelly Boyd commented that Governor Huckabee is following this very closely and is extremely supportive. He asked that the Board keep him advised of what the Governors Office can do to help in this project.
Suzanne Wiley said that the final Board appointment had been issued. She noted that some Board members were appointed for one year. She explained that the one-year appointments are state agency representatives and that they can be reappointed more than twice in a row; the other members can only serve two consecutive terms and must take a break before serving again.
Suzanne reminded the members that elections need to take place and will be scheduled for the next meeting.
Suzanne Wiley reminded the Board that an application for this award was submitted in June. She explained that GeoStor and the ADOP program were submitted as projects that fit the requirements of the award. Suzanne said she has not yet received a response regarding this award.
Suzanne pointed out that INA now has an E-government web site and that it would be a good place to publicize the GeoStor rollout early next year.
Suzanne Wiley reviewed the national I-Team effort and explained that it is a federal national effort to coordinate the development especially the seven basic framework layers of data state-by-state, as well as having each state identify special layers. She said that members are needed to be on subcommittees for the various layers of data for Arkansas, which are tentatively identified as ortho-imagery, transportation, elevation, hydrology, geodetic control, public land survey system, cadastral, government units, land use/land cover, street centerlines, soils, geology, telecommunications, critical infrastructure, and census. She explained that some chairs have been filled but that more are needed.
Suzanne explained that the cadastral and street centerlines subcommittees will be doing a lot in the next few months, but that the other subcommittees will need to be evaluating what kind of data is needed, what is already available, who should be the custodian, where do funds come from currently to support layers, and where might funds come from to support layers. The results will be necessary to complete an I-Team plan for Arkansas and eventually submit for consideration of federal funding. She said that it is likely that there will be some money available for the first states to get their requests filed.
Suzanne said Ron Matzner will be looking for funding from the FGDC to fund Arkansas representatives to attend MAGIC in Kansas City in April 2002. This would be for the purpose of looking at standards for the seven data layers.
Fred Limp proposed the creation of an Arkansas AmericaView open consortium, which would be a holding structure for participants and which the Arkansas Geographic Information Office would help coordinate. He explained that once that was done, then it would need to be decided what should obtained through the consortiums activities, such as scenes, season, etc.
Fred next commented that if this entity is created, it would be in a better position to negotiate and interact with the national AmericaView program. He said he understood that there is an appropriation in Congress for $40M for the next four years to the USGS for AmericaView. Fred explained that it would have to be decided at what level the consortium would participate and then what the rules of participation would be. He said that participation would guarantee that a member who participated in the initial purchase could also get other data at a great discount. He recommended that the consortium would purchase one statewide coverage at about $3800 and that this would be divided amongst participants.
Bill Bush made the motion to create an Arkansas AmericaView Consortium through the Land Information Board. Shirley Sandlin seconded the motion and it was passed unanimously. It was requested that the Arkansas Geographic Information Office get out information to potential members and find out the type and quantity of imagery they would want to purchase the AmericaView will be meeting in January, and it was agreed that the LIB needs to send a letter saying that the Board wishes o be a participant in the program.
Priorities for 2002 Suzanne Wiley recapped the activities of 2001:
Getting GeoStor online was accomplished
Complete a Strategic Plan - needs to be finished, possibly in conjunction with the I-Team plan
Prepare a legislative package - accomplished
Address cadastral layer development and improve PLSS - has been started
Expand education and public outreach - much done through AGIO
Identify efforts for coordination and cost savings for city, county and local governments and support city/county development of GIS, and coordinate with Planning and Development Districts - much has been accomplished in this area
Establish and reinforce partnerships - an ongoing effort
Address Emergency Management and floodplain data development - some accomplishments there in regards to fire districts
Increase awareness of standardizing 911 data - ongoing in relation to Street Centerline project
Suzanne asked the Board and Advisory Panel members for suggestions of what the Board should focus on in 2002. Shelby Johnson introduced Mr. Yancey Reynolds of Reynolds Real Estate, who thanked the Board for their work. He then discussed challenges facing assessors offices that do not have computers, and he explained that most assessors offices are not standardized in terms of databases. He stressed that these are important issues that must be approached in the future.
Suzanne then listed the following goals for the coming year:
Cadastral data coordination, development, and data standards
Begin preparing for next legislative session
Continue expansion of education
Seek outside sources of funding
Adoption of metadata standards as soon as possible - revisit ASDI draft document
Suzanne Wiley recommended that even though the members do not wish to meet in December, that it is important that work continue by email communication on the I-Team plan. The next meeting was scheduled on January 9th, which will also have a videoconference link with a location in Fayetteville.
The meeting was then adjourned.