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Home May 19, 2004 Agenda & Minutes

Agenda

MEETING: Maine Library of Geographic Information Board
DATE: Wednesday, May 19, 2004
TIME: 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Burton M. Cross Building – Conference Room 107

1. Approval of the April 21 Board Meeting Minutes

Subcommittee Business

  • TSIII Subcommittee Demo – Geospatial One-Stop
  • Board Panel at the June 10 Technology Conference
  • Board Funding
  • Expiring Board Member Terms
  • Filling Current Board Vacancy
  • Gathering data from other agencies to add to the GeoLibrary

Updates

  • Land Cover project
  • Orthophoto project
  • APA review

Future Board Meeting Business

  • Board’s Vacancy Legislation Change
  • Study Impact of Statewide System for Electronic Filing of Deeds
  • Development Tracking Project

MINUTES

Wednesday, May 19, 2004 | 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Burton M. Cross Building, Conference Room 107

Members in attendance

Barbara Charry
Jim Page
Dennis Boston
Marilyn Lutz
Dick Thompson
Jon Giles
Paul Mateosian
Robert Faunce
Will Mitchell
Robert Doiron
Sean Myers

Members not in attendance

John Holden
Ed Suslovic
Ray Halperin

Staff to the Board

Dan Walters
Larry Harwood

Guests

David McKittrick, Delorme
Gary Higginbottom
Don Garrold, Searsport
Tom Lynch, NGI
Stacy Benjamin, State Planning Office
Michael Parkin, ESRI
Matthew Davis, ESRI
Tom Howker, BIS
Elizabeth Hertz, GIS Executive Council

With the absence of the Chair and Co-chair, Jim Page was nominated to sit in as Chair to the Board. A motion was made, seconded, and approved by the Board.

Agenda Item #1: Approval of the April 21 Board Meeting Minutes

Jim asked the Board for a motion to accept the minutes; a motion was made and seconded. Jim (allowing the Board time to review the document) asked if there were any amendments/changes to the minutes. A minor change was noted that Don Garrold comes from “Searsport” not “Searsmont”. With a show of hands, the Board voted unanimously to approve the minutes with minor change noted above.

Item 2: TSIII Subcommittee Demo – Geospatial One Stop

Will Mitchell asked to Table Item #7 and give the allotment of time to ESRI for their Spatial Data Clearinghouses & Geospatial One-Stop presentation on data distribution infrastructure for handling data. With approval from the Board, Matthew Davis of ESRI proceeded to give his presentation to the Board on the following agenda items:

¨ Spatial Data Clearinghouses

¨ The Geospatial One Stop (GOS)

¨ The Data Delivery for ArcIMS

¨ Discussions

Spatial Data Clearinghouses allow for sharing of spatial data and provides a single place to look for and download/request data. The data is accessed via tiles and files. Some of the pros and cons are simplicity and reliability, not intuitive, choice of download or shipped, offers static data, but is tedious to keep current.

The infrastructure would provide simple map services that would allow first real user experience using interactive maps, dynamic content, customization, and custom reports.

Noting that web services can be easily consumed by other applications, the Clearinghouses will allow for flexible data downloads along with data and geoprocessing services. Being able to use clip, zip, and ship downloads will result in smaller more complete and focused downloads.

The GIS networks will provide the infrastructure and the interoperability for building and participating in federated GIS. It will provide organization and structure for interoperability which will connect users with data and GeoServices.

Part of Matt’s presentation included slides from website http://www.geodata.gov/gos. The Geospatial One - Stop Portal for Geospatial Access. It covers metadata publishing, documentation and organization, and Discovery and Access.

Some of the goals of the GOS infrastructure are a minimal effort to share and find data and services, and only 2 Clicks to content. Some of the benefits include faster discovery, direct access and use, and faster data download, elimination of redundancy, improvement of data quality and coverage, and collaboration for new data collection.

The intent of GOS is Discovery and Access to information, events, and activities, data for use in GIS software, GIS services (mapping, geoprocessing), geospatial application, and planned data acquisitions. The concept summary is to build information sharing.

The Metadata Catalog is key to connecting users to services. The infrastructure would harvest GIS catalogs into a central server, users would connect to, search, and discover at central server. Supporting interoperability is implemented with IT standards, Library standards, and GIS standards. The GOS architecture consists of system components and system environments.

For publishing metadata there are metadata standards in place, a centralized catalogue, and publishing methods are available (Input form, XML file upload, Harvesting from participating nodes).

Matt’s slide presentation also included a tour of geodata.gov. The site offers quick access to content (2 Clicks), breakdown of categories, and three search criteria for input (Where? What? When?), view the national map and browse other datasets, query map data, interact with multiple WMS and IMS services (overlay maps services, set transparency levels, save maps for later use). Publishing materials would include geographic datasets, images, geoservices, reference materials, event and activities, and planned data acquisitions. The Administration part of the infrastructure will perform reviews on metadata submissions from publishers, generate site usages reports, approve or disapprove records, and e-mail publishers on missing information.

Matt noted that GOS is about discovery and access, not about how the data is being provided to you, that is done by the provider. GOS holds a piece of the data and allows for buttons to various services, and allows for viewing and downloading.

Another slide in Matt’s presentation was a Sample Site Statistics on geodata.gov. In summary, the infrastructure allows for publishing, searching, viewing, and directly connect to geospatial data and Web services over a distributed network.

Matt noted that the tool kit currently being used is GIS Portal Catalog V 1.2 which uses a standard web browser, there are no plugins needed, and it is based on FGDS, ISO 19115:2003, ANSI/NISO (see Slide “GIS Portal Solution – ArcGIS 8.3, 9.0, and 9.X for more details). Matt also talked about the ArcIMS Data Delivery Extension which allows users to download spatial data in the format and projection of their choice and it supports over 40 formats. This will allow the user to zoom to extent, select the format, projection, and extents information than export a zip file containing the selected data in the new format. The Data Delivery Extension (a scalable architecture) uses a separate configuration allowing for multiple processes, redundant system, and scalability. It also supports multiple formats. The presentation was followed by questions and discussions on how this would/could work for the Maine GeoLibrary.

The conceptual view would be to add modules (Desktop/HTML) to the current MEGIS data store to allow for queries and to find data in the repository. Outside users could use GOS to do a query; inside users (Government) could use the MEGIS site. The data could be packaged up, sent over, and provided by the central repository. You could set up access to data by sectioning it off to inside/outside state government, could also decide to push all data up or just the changes.

Putting the infrastructure in place would involve publishing the data (from compatible sites) and making the data accessible from this portal, can control access to the data.

Also, there would be a management tool in place to perform check and balances on the data. The data could be made available/accessible worldwide using same level of standards. Data could be published in the MEGIS repository, pushed up to the GOS repository and to the Federal Government.

 

Will Mitchell noted that the framework supports any data, any platform, and supports an open vision. Noting that the Board’s original thinking was not a distributed system, Jim Page asked if this was an evolution in basic conceptual design from the library, was this a direction the TSIII subcommittee was recommending to go,and what stage are we at? .

Dan Walters gave a short history about the project and that it stems from the FGDC Grant of $25,000, noting the basic charge was to develop a basic browser, viewer of data, provide a better print tool (clip, zip, and ship) capability. The GOS portal does all these things and even more. The infrastructure buys into a very robust well maintained system. Research was done to see what was available out there and GOS would be the best deal for the Board. We would set up a Board site for accessing data and could customize for the Maine GeoLibrary One Stop registered through GOS.

A question was raised regarding viewing Maine data only or everything out there. The response was the Board would decide how to set it up. A concern was also brought up about keeping it a simple interface/process. Something a non-technical person could perform. The Board could cut down GOS to fit the GeoLibrary site.

Using GOS would provide a place to send data and host, the towns data could be made available to a larger audience. Would this replace websites maintained by towns already? No, towns will not always be providing data to one spot. Depending on the size of the community, having a notion of two separate places for data would take some convincing for towns to do this. A draw back would be bigger vs. smaller communities. It was noted that data would be published to allow for viewing various layers of data.

Jim, ask the Board to bring this discussion to a close for now, move on to other agenda items, and if time allows the Board could return to this discussion. It was noted that the Board needs to look at these kinds of options very seriously.

Will Mitchell brought up the item of requiring additional funding (above $25,000) for the project. Will was asked, by Jim, if he was making a recommendation to the Board, Will replied yes, would like to make a recommendation to the Board to allocate an additional $15,000. The deliverable would be work done by the MEGIS staff, R&D, development of an RFP for a contract, and implementation of a GeoLibrary portal. At this time, a motion to approve additional expenditures of $15,000 to support the GeoLibrary portal was made by Will Mitchell.

Questions and concerns were raised as to what would be included in the total funding. Funding would include purchasing software, annual maintenance if needed. Matt Davis noted that the GOS took kit was not a charge item and had no maintenance. Dick Thompson asked if this product had been accepted, did the TSIII Subcommittee look at a number of products, what else did we look at?

Dan Walters responded that MEGIS is currently working off an ESRI platform and there are a limited number of viable tools out there. Will Mitchell noted the plan is to build upon what is already in place and do more. This would open things up to use other tool boxes.

A question was raised regarding the cost, does it include: 1) the customization tool that meets our needs, 2) contract for services to implement the tool kit and customize for the GeoLibrary? Yes.

Dick Thompson asked about the software component in the $40,000 budget. How much would be spent on the existing ESRI product? Response was approximately $5,000.00.

This would also include the data delivery cost for clip, zip, and ship.

It was noted at this time that the budget had a savings of approximately $65,000 with $50,000 allotted for landcover, leaving a balance of $15,000.

Again the motion was brought before the Board. It was noted that an extensive discussion on funding was needed in relation to ongoing work vs. a one time thing.

Sean Myers asked about functional requirements and the need for a list of functional requirements. The response was that the RFP will have functional requirements.

The TSIII Subcommittee will be reviewing the RFP for final approval.

In closing this discussion, the motion for an allotment of $15,000 for the GeoLibrary portal, pending final sign off of the RFP by the TSIII Subcommittee, was voted on by the Board with nine (9) yes and one (1) abstain

Moving on to the agenda, it was agreed that the parcel grants item did not need any action at this meeting.

Item #3 Board Panel at the June 10 Technology Conference

Jim Page, Will Mitchell, Sean Meyers, Paul Mateosian and Marilyn Lutz agreed to serve on the GeoLibrary Board Panel at the June 10 Technology Conference. The panel would probably have about an hour for a panel discussion/question period at the conference. Subject matters for the panel could include: 1) what the Board is currently doing, 2) what the Board has accomplished, 3) future goals of the Board, and 4) the Board’s funding situation. It was also recommended that the Board pick a moderator to keep the process running smoothly. Jim Page was nominated and accepted to be the panel moderator.

Other items brought up for discussion to bring to the conference were the grant applications (Round 1/Round 2). At this time, Larry Harwood gave a brief synopsis on the grant application process to date. He noted the Review Committee had met, 78 applications had come in and were being scored by the Review Committee on an individual basis, not as a group. It was thought there may not be enough data available to bring to the conference.

Will Mitchell asked about the dollar amount allotted for the grant applications being approximately $175,000 per round. Larry Harwood noted that to date the grant application requests received total approximately $400,000 plus.

In ending this agenda item, Dan Walters agreed to coordinate the Board Panel and materials for the June 10 Technology Conference.

Item #4: Board Funding

Elizabeth Hertz, GIS Executive Council, was asked to give a brief update regarding GeoLibrary Board funding. Liz noted that she had met with John Holden, Seth Barker, and Dan Walters to review options available to leverage each others (GeoLibrary Board/GIS Executive Council) funding. Noting that the bond money has limitations on spending, the GIS EC would look at what tasks they could pay for, look at ways to pool money and re-divide at the same time honoring bond money being spent. She noted the need to move GIS systems forward in the state. Liz commented that they were currently brainstorming at this point and all suggestions are acceptable.

Dan Walters noted they would be meeting in September to reform the Finance Committee to look at all options out there. At this time, Dick Thompson brought up the concern of impacting the state’s budget and the need for the Board to meet in August and make final decisions by September on any funding that will impact the state’s budget. Dick also noted that the funding baseline from the BIS funds would be allotted to the GeoLibrary Board for another year. A question was raised about requesting more bond money. It was noted that all current bond money must be encumbered before requesting for more.

Item #5 Expiring Board Member Terms

It was agreed no action would be taken at this Board meeting. All Board members are asked to please make the June 16th meeting. Members were asked to review their term of office, check the bylaws to see if they can be re-appointed, if interested, and get back to John Holden, Chair with their findings/decision.

Item #6: Filling Current Board Vacancy

This agenda item needs to be brought to the Legislature for them to change the current language in the legislation. It will be discussed at the June meeting.

Item #7: Land Cover Project

A Review Committee has been set up and is currently reviewing three (3) proposals. The committee is in the middle of the review process, we should know within a week who the selected bidder will be. Administration of the contract will be through MEGIS.

Jim Page reminded the Board that some members, at the April meeting, did recuse themselves from the approval process for parcel grants leaving open the question whether we could muster the required 7 affirmative votes if attendance was down. A concern was raised if there would be a quorum from the Board once the Review Committee brings its recommendations to the Board for approval. Dick Thompson noted that the Board would have to trust the group who is reviewing and making recommendations to the Board. The Board must consider all options if they are going to have a problem with the approval process.

Item #8: Orthophoto Project

Larry reported that the Joint Funding Agreement (JFA) with the US Geological Survey (USGS) for generating the new orthophotos had been signed. The latest word from USGS was that orthophotos would begin arriving in June of 2004 and the entire southern Maine section – flown in Spring of 2003 – would be completed by September of 2004. The actual wording of the JFA says that the orthophotos will be completed by December 31st, 2004.

Jon Giles asked if photographic products such as stereo pair diapositives were available from USGS. The reply was that USGS has the negatives and all photographic products would be available from USGS for a fee. Larry will look into what products are available and report to the Board.

Item #9: APA Review (Administrative Procedures Act)

Dick Thompson commented no further action has been taken. It was asked if the comment period had been started. Dick responded, no. Dick will be setting up a date for the hearing.

A concern was raised about awarding the grants before the parcel standards were officially adopted. The standards can be used as written and if required modifications can be done as needed. It was noted there is a formal amendment process in place for this purpose.

Before adjourning the meeting, other questions were raised. Regarding the parcel grants, if someone fails the first round can they reapply in the second round, are the rules clear about this? Response was, they can apply in the second round and they would have no precedent over new applications.

Will the applications that are not awarded a parcel grant be informed in writing? Response was yes. Dick Thompson noted that a debriefing is usually not done during the awarding period, done later.

Barbara Charry brought up a question about the GeoLibrary portal as it relates to clip, zip, and ship and defining the areas. It was noted that MEGIS will define what the information will look like. We will work with the owners of the data to set up a symbology of different layers.

Sean Myers asked that an updated funding spreadsheet be brought to the Board at the June meeting. Dan Walters will compile the spreadsheet and bring to the Board.

At 12:30 p.m. Jim Page asked for a motion to adjourn the meeting, so done.