GIS Government News Weekly: MapStory Grant, GMO Maps, UK Land Records

Sunlight Foundation Grant for MapStory

The Sunlight Foundation made a grant to the MapStory Foundation to explore historical boundary changes in California.

For the California GIS Data project of the MapStory Foundation, a $10,000 grant, to use mapping to tell stories around human settlement by showing historical changes in counties and municipalities (using California as a pilot) and to test the quality of the data itself.

And, here's the MapStory side.

More Free Data in Michigan

Also at its meeting Thursday, June 12, the Allegan County Board of Commissioners approved a resolution doing away with fees for Geographical Information Services data.

The public will have online access to the data (I don't think it's there yet). Until now there was a fee for staff to provide the data. The county will lose $3,500 with the change. 

GMO Maps for Oregon?

Last October, Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber directed the state's Department of Agriculture to undertake something far more ambitious than that failed mapping effort — map GMO field locations across the entire state and establish buffer zones and exclusion areas for GE crops.

The move was spurred by several instances of genetic contamination in the region that rendered non-engineered crops unsellable on the export market.

Oregon would be the first state in the nation to do such mapping and try to prevent contamination.

UK Land Changes to be Centralized

Local authorities typically take care of UK land changes. But word is the Land Registry will taking over that job to create a national system. People need to search for changes when buying or selling property. Despite asking for input on the change and hearing that authorities were against it, the Land Registry went ahead with the idea. It will being next April. The chief land registrar says the standardization will speed service and ease the process of buying property.

Fayetteville, Arkansas' New Online Map

The new “My Fayetteville Services” website lets residents and newcomers type in an address to quickly find information about local utilities, neighborhood associations, nearby amenities, government boundaries, and who their City Council representatives are.

I don't think I've seen an app with quite as much information as this. Tech: Esri. My concern: will users figure out how to "make it go." It's not quite as instructive as you might think. See how you do!

Dedham, MA Offers Multiple Apps

Unlike Fayetteville, Dedham, MA is offering a series of viewers for its citizenry. I find these much easier to navigate than a kitchen sink map. The latter is best for "experts."

New Images for Namibia

The Minister of Lands and Resettlement, Alpheus !Naruseb, this week announced new aerial imagery and ortho-photographs, covering three hundred and twenty thousand square kilometres of central Namibia.

COWI A/S a Danish firm together with a Namibian firm Shanyengana and Associates Land Surveyors was awarded the contract for the project at the cost of N$ 19.6 million financed totally by the Namibian Government.

Published Wednesday, June 18th, 2014

Written by Adena Schutzberg

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