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"Spatially Speaking" is the official MAPPS blog providing information on topics related to the association and profession and MAPPS involvement with the issues.

 

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MAPPS Minute - FEMA Flood Mapping

Posted By Nick Palatiello, Friday, January 10, 2014

Lost in the holiday festivities was a report released by the National Academy of Public Administration, titled "FEMA Flood Mapping: Enhancing Coordination to Maximize Performance". MAPPS was instrumental in convincing Congress to include the funding mechanism provisions in the FEMA bill in 2012 and worked with the NAPA study team. Learn more from MAPPS Executive Director John Palatiello.

Register to the attend the MAPPS 2014 Winter Conference today!

Tags:  2014 Winter Conference  Coordination  FEMA  Flood Mapping  Geospatial  LIDAR  NAPA 

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Candidates Sought for FEMA’s “TMAC”

Posted By John Palatiello, Wednesday, September 11, 2013
In July of last year, Congress passed and President Obama signed the "Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act”, commonly known as "MAP-21”.  Public Law 112-141 included the highway bill, student loan reform, and provisions reforming the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s flood insurance and mapping program.  MAPPS was deeply involved in securing several mapping reform provisions, which we’ve discussed in a previous blog post.

One provision in that law re-established the Technical Mapping Advisory Council, or TMAC, to provide advice and recommendations to the FEMA Administrator on the flood mapping program.  This week, I received a letter (attached to this post) from FEMA seeking nominations of candidates to represent the mapping profession on the TMAC.

I must submit MAPPS nominations BY THIS FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 13.  If you are interested in being a candidate for this advisory committee, please send me a C.V. immediately.

 Attached Files:

Tags:  Congress  FEMA  MAP-21  Mapping  President Obama  TMAC 

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MAPPS Host 20th Annual Federal Programs Conference

Posted By Nick Palatiello, Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Updated: Thursday, August 11, 2011
Numerous policy and market opportunity pronouncements were unveiled at the 20th annual MAPPS Federal Programs Conference, held March 15-16 in Washington, DC. More than 90 MAPPS member firm principals, owners, partners and senior pro- fessionals converged in the nation's capital for briefings and meetings with more than 20 Federal agency officials, as well as more than 150 vis- its to the offices of Represen- tatives and Senators in the U.S. Congress.

At the Federal agency briefings on March 15, MAPPS members were treated to first-look information that could lead to upcoming business opportunities for private geo- spatial firms. The National Geospatial Intelligence Agency’s (NGA’s) Dennis Morgan announced that its request for proposals for Geospatial Intelligence (GeoINT) Data Readiness (GDR) contacts, the successor to the current Global Geospatial Intelligence (GGI) contracts, will be issued later this year. Additionally, FEMA‟s Paul Rooney noted the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released its request for qualifications from firms for contracts for Remote Sensing to Support Incident Management and Homeland Security days be- fore the MAPPS session.

While MAPPS was in Washington, the Small Business Administration (SBA) released its proposal to revise "size standards” or definitions of small businesses in a variety of Professional, Technical, and Scientific Services categories. The classification for surveying and mapping, as well as architecture and engineering, is proposed to rise from $4.5 to $19 million in gross annual receipts, measured on a three year average.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) provided an update on its role in producing a national broadband map, compiled from individual state mapping efforts, and plans for a next-gen 911 system. Michael Byrne, the Geo- spatial Information Officer (GIO) of the FCC, assured MAPPS members that the FCC is well aware of the GPS interference posed by the LightSquared application, that the FCC understands the concerns expressed by MAPPS and others in our community, and that the LightSquared application will either be rejected or amended to assure no interference with GPS. While noting he could not comment on an ongoing investigation, Byrne said FCC’s inquiry of certain Google activities will not result in regulation of the broader geospatial community. He reported the caution provided by MAPPS was helpful in educating the FCC on the activities of the private geospatial profession. The privacy issue was also addressed by Karen Siderelis, GIO of the Department of the Interior and chairman of the Federal Geographic Data Committee’s (FGDC)’s executive committee. She reported on a meeting between FGDC and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) staff in which the FTC said it was "flooded” with comments on proposed regulations prohibiting the collection, storage or use of "precise geolocation data" without a citizens' prior approval. Siderelis said the FTC admitted it inappropriately used the term, resulting in an "unintended consequence” that would be corrected in the final rule. FTC is also considering a work- shop with the geospatial community to identify ways to implement privacy protections against phishing and cyber stalking, without disturbing the legitimate activities of geospatial firms.

Both Siderelis and BLM Chief Cadastral Surveyor Don Buhler predicted a demand in boundary data on Indian lands resulting from settlement of the Cobell case. Buhler reported the Interior Department’s Inspector General found "the Bureau of Land Management's Cadastral Survey program was missing the opportunity to identify and perform surveys on high risk lands where significant potential revenues could be collected by the Department or Indian tribes. Proper survey and management of high risk lands with antiquated surveys has the potential to generate hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue from lands with valuable resources.”

Bureau shared information on research and development opportunities for the 2020 Census to exploit technology on a secure (web) exchange process for ad- dress and spatial data, ways to ingest spatial and address data from partners, products and services that may facilitate the exchange of spatial and address data from Census to partners, and the use of imagery and change detection methods. She also said that the current Census policy that Title 13 restrictions prohibited sharing of master address file (MAF) and building structure point data is being reviewed.

David Kennedy, Assistant Administrator of NOAA for the National Ocean Service, provided details on a more than $80 million program for base mapping and charting activities, hydrographic surveys, integrated ocean and coastal mapping, and shoreline mapping. He also said an investigation was being launched in response to a MAPPS com- plaint about a recent bid for professional LiDAR data collection services in California that violated the Brooks Act and was awarded to a university.

On Wednesday, March 16, MAPPS members traveled to Capitol Hill to visit their Congressional delegations. As a result of the MAPPS efforts, ten cosponsors were secured for FEMA flood risk map reform legislation, seven lawmakers committed to cosponsoring the Federal Land Asset Inventory Reform (FLAIR) Act, providing a current, accurate, GIS-based inventory of Federal land ownership, nineteen Representatives and Senators pledged to cosponsor the Freedom from Government Competition Act and five members of the House agreed to introduce a bill to reform governance and coordination of Federal geospatial activities, known as the Map It Once, Use It Many Times (MIO-UIMT) Act.

Tags:  BLM  Congress  FCC  FEMA  FLAIR Act  GeoINT  MIO-UIMT  NGA  NOAA  SBA 

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