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Home > Meetings > October 11, 2006

October 11, 2006


1. Approval of last months minutes (September 13) attached

2. Subcommittee reports

  • Financial
  • Licensing
  • Web Services
  • Enterprise Licensing Agreement
  • Strategic Plan

3. Discuss pilot project(s) for ArcServer

  • Form subcommittee
  • DOT project – Tom Marcottee
  • MEGIS project – Bob White
  • General project to demonstrate how a simple GIS service/tool that many agencies require can be developed and deployed
  • Non-programmer use of ArcServer

4. Assign tasks for the Web Services Committee

5. Are there any other technical issues that need to be sent to a subcommittee

  • Data projects that can be undertaken with monies available from SLA savings
  • Others

6. Review draft mission statement and goals

  • Decide on required changes
  • Assign responsibility to write these into final form

7. Review draft MOU for MEGIS, Geolibrary Board, GIS Executive Council

8. Review draft Strategic Plan format



Members Present
Christopher Kroot, Chair
Matthew Bampton, Co-Chair
David Kirouac, OIT/MEGIS
Victor Chakravarty, OIT/Policy & Strategic Planning
Seth Barker, DMR
David Blocher, OIT/Policy & Strategic Planning
Mary Cloutier, OIT/Policy & Strategic Planning
Nate Kane, DOT

Agenda Item #1: Approval of the September 13 meeting notes

Members were given a few minutes to review the notes and comment. With only two minor changes needed the notes were approved.

Agenda Item #2: Subcommittee Reports

Financial Committee: It was noted the CIO will be meeting with the Commissioner of DAFS and more information will be provided at the November GIS Executive Council meeting. It was noted agency budgets are tight and GIS funding is hard to come by. There is a possibility of having to make some cuts in IT.

Also noted was the usage of licensing possibility being less in the days ahead if folks realize they will have to pay. Agencies need to log off when not using the licensing services.

Outcome: David Blocher will give an update on GIS financials at the November meeting.

Licensing Committee : David Kirouac reported on an upcoming meeting to discuss licensing fees; also being discussed are the agencies that had their own licensing service and contributed to the licensing pool how will they be charged?

Outcome: A recommendation on the number of licenses to be used for desktops will be on the November meeting agenda. For the desktop we have 100 licenses, which one will these be? There will also be floating licenses; how many extension licenses will there be? ESRI would like to have an estimate regarding licenses.

Web Services : The committee will be meeting next month. Christopher has given them a set of items that need to be addressed. The Web Service Committee will replace the IMS Committee. One of their tasks is to look at what the role for ArcServer will be. Other tasks will include looking at new technology in the web services area; look at IMS; look at integration of spatial services with business services; purchasing of web services. There are web services you can purchase that may be much more cost effective than building. It was also recommended that the Web Services Committee make some recommendations on the common look and feel.

Outcome: Victor Chakravarty asked to be added to the Web Service Committee.

Technology Committee: It was noted the current set up of the Technology Committee is not very effective; no resolution has been made at this time on how it will be set up; this committee best functions if given specific task(s).

Enterprise Licensing Agreement: We have communicated to ESRI that we cannot give them $100,000; increased value has not been proven. ESRI has agreed to provide us with a team of professional developers at no cost; there are several ArcServer pilot projects to work on (DOT project; MEGIS project) to demonstrate how a simple GIS service/tool that many agencies require can be developed and deployed. DOT and ADAM group programmers will be invited and programmers from other agencies also. We want to test an agency specific project; this will benefit other agencies; we can fold this in with the Web Services Committee work.

Objectives of the pilot project: pick some toll of use to many agencies that we would develop; could be a map viewer; a buffer; recommended generic ArcServer application (Geo Coder). We need sessions where ESRI developers pass on the technology to a group of state developers. The whole idea is this is the application, there are the skills you would need.

Get some access to the virtual campus for low cost training; switching of licenses can be anything; EDN is included; 20 extensions can be used for any extensions. The concept would be to move incrementally and realize more benefit. In the spring, demonstrate more benefit; look at a 5 year plan; evaluate before we commit to how much more we will pay and look at a graduated increase.

ESRI: The discussion of money is not final; everything else they have agreed to.

Pilot Project Testing : Outcomes will be usable; will need a platform to deploy it on; DEP may have one available.

TASK: Need to find a web serve to do the pilot project testing; need a web server to put ArcServer on; Victor agreed to take this on. The Web Services Committee will evaluate and define. The next WSC meeting is November 7.

Grant application with DOE: Use ArcServer to collect data for schools; Matthew provide expertise and send write up to Carmen; David Blocher get Matthew acquainted with Kevin Jones.

Pilot Project for ArcServer: a non-programmer use of it; interface for simple applications; does not require programming. Need to be comprehensive, ArcServer is a technology we will use; need to train people; include cross training - .net and JAVA programmers (not really GIS folks). The goal is to use the ADAM group versus contracting outside vendors.

What is the time frame for getting started? ESRI is ready to go; the ball is in our court; get the server; do the ArcServer testing and development. We need to put something together very quickly. Have Bob White, Tom Marcotte, Matthew work with David Blocher and David Kirouac and get something together.

Outcome: We need to get this moving and part of the Enterprise Licensing Agreement.

Agenda Item #3: Discuss Pilot Project(s) for ArcServer

Agenda Item #4: Assign Tasks for the Web Services Committee (WSC)

Items discussed were the utilization of web-based tools for training especially for folks in regional officers or up in the county; delivery and content of training are two separate things is the Web Service Committee the right committee? We may need to clarify web training; the University is looking at web delivery training products; need to discuss the tools available. Training would include content, tools and mechanism. Do we need to set up a subcommittee working on training simultaneously with the Web Services Committee?

The WSC will be asked to review what the options are (tools available) for training; what are the limitations and strengthens and provide this information to the training committee.

Members suggested/volunteered for the Training Committee are: Matthew Bampton, Seth Barker, Mike Smith and Denis Normandin were recommended; also get someone from the Dept. of Education (David Blocher will talk with Kevin Jones). Matthew offered his services to bring the DOE involved in GIS training (via Geographic Alliance) Matthew will track down names for David. Matthew will Chair the GIS Training Committee. Also brought up as possible membership to this committee was the Secretary of State's Office. Should also have someone from MEGIS. Six to nine months down the road this committee may have some recommendations for InforME to help provide these (tools, content and hosting).

Outcome: If anyone comes up with contacts beneficial to the Training Committee please send them to Matthew Bampton.

It was noted that the .NET developers were meeting on regarding GIS services. They will be discussing what is being done or what should be done regarding .net developers. This will give them an opportunity to know each other and to collaborate; this group should interact with the WSC or bring someone from that group into the WSC; there is some overlap. It was suggested to extend an invitation to other developers and there was a need to maintain vendor neutrality. We are not limited to .net; ESRI does work with .net.

Outcome: Need to get the .net group and the WSC to work together.

Agenda Item #5: Are there any other technical issues that need to be sent to a committee

Recommendations: Re-initiate the Hydro and Town Boundary subcommittees; Seth shared the issues that need to be addressed. Seth will chair and bring together a committee (joint committee from both of the two groups Hydro and Town Boundary) and come up with a recommendation. Seth as asked to copy Mike Smith on this task.

In talking about the NHD project, it was noted to pull this group back together to accomplish some issues; David Kirouac has a list and will send out an e-mail to all.

Are there data projects that can be undertaken with monies available from SLA savings?

Agenda Item #6: Review draft mission statement and goals

The Council needs to avoid too much focus on what is a vision, a goal, an objective. Do we want objectives in this document or should they come out from the Strategic Plan? Agreed that objectives would not be included in the Vision, Mission and Goals document; objectives are the HOWS and should be in the Strategic Plan.

After extensive discussions, the Council agreed on the following:

Vision: Deliver cost effective GIS services that support effective decision making within Maine State Government and efficient delivery of government services to the citizens and businesses of Maine .

Mission : Maintain, enhance and support the use of GIS/Geospatial technologies throughout Maine State Government and the University of Maine System . Enable the integration of the GIS/Geospatial technologies with other business information systems.

Goal #1 : Coordinate interagency participation in the sharing of standardized GIS data, applications, products, services, best practices and other GIS-related resources.

Goal #2: Promote and foster partnerships within and among Maine State Government, the Federal Government, GeoLibrary Board, Academic Institutions, non-profit organizations and equivalent international organizations.

Goal #3: Obtain funding for Maine State Government and the University of Maine System for GIS/Geospatial technologies.

Goal #4: Promote and ensure the most effective and efficient utilization of resources to continue to develop and expand enterprise GIS/Geospatial technologies within Maine State Government and the University of Maine System .

Outcome: Carmen was asked to put the Vision, Mission and Goals document together and forward to the folks present at the meeting for review/comments. All comments should be sent to Christopher. A final draft will be prepared.

Special Notes for Consideration:

  • Need to define and consider the terminology of geospatial vs. GIS; consider the line of GIS Executive Council/GeoLibrary Board; include the University System. Do we want to consider the GPS effort within GIS?
  • Does the GeoLibrary Board provide services to the academic institutions? Who provides to the academic institutions?

Agenda Item #7: Review draft MOU for MEGIS, GeoLibrary Board and GIS Executive Council

Tabled and will be brought up at the November meeting. David Blocher quickly reviewed the latest MOU draft version with those present. Carmen was asked to send out the latest draft version to the GIS Executive Council for their review and comments to Dan by November 1. The GIS Executive Council would like to endorse/approve the MOU at the November meeting.

Agenda Item #8: Review draft Strategic Plan Format

The Strategic Plan Team (Matthew, David Kirouac, Dan, Christopher) started working on the Strategic Plan and presented a format to the folks present.

Strategic Plan: need to avoid redundancy, fragmentation, take one item (like Application) and place under the proper goal; some items may fall under more than one goal; specific applications tied to specific goals; take Goal 1: here are all the things that fall under Goal 1; do the same for Goal 2, 3, and 4.

Discussion on how to set up the strategic plan:

  • structural point of view: Take all the goals in the front; write the rest of the document and point to the specific goal covered
  • the 6 strategic plan items will be scattered throughout the document; how will this work into an implementation plan (pull together by topic);
  • put together the strategic plan using items 1-6 and how they fit under each goal