GIS Government News Weekly: Rancho Cucamonga Shares, EU Encouraged to Share

California City Takes on Smaller Local Governments as GIS Clients

Rancho Cucamonga’s Rancho Enterprise GIS (REGIS) division was created two years ago to bring geographic information system (GIS) data and services to smaller municipalities.

“We are not coming in as a private company trying to learn how a city functions. We already know how a city functions,” said Ingrid Bruce, Rancho Cucamonga’s GIS/special districts manager and REGIS’ client services manager.

In early 2013, the City Council approved its REGIS program, and this February it entered into a two-year, $162,000 contract with the Napa Valley town of Yountville – its first partner agency. Yountville is a town of about 3,000 population.

Galena MD has College Update Town Website, GIS

The Town of Galena partnering with Washington College's Geographic Information System laboratory to create its brand-new website, which launched July 1. Prior to that, there had been no upgrades or changes to the original site.

"The town was looking for someone to help them create a more modern website and wanted to highlight what the town has to offer," Emily Aiken, of the GIS lab, said.

Initially, the lab was placing zoning information on the site, but after seeing its current state, decided to offer its services in designing a new one. 

"This is the first time we've done something as big as a town website," Aiken said.

The finished product contains new features, such as detailed zoning information for the town, an updated business directory, online bill payment, multimedia, mailing list, embedded social media, detailed event listings, a ticker displaying town updates, Galena's history and more. 

Adding Data to the GPS System?

Shawnee, OK is getting an online map for citizen and city use. This from the utility director, per the local paper.

[Steve] Nelms said the city currently has over 8,000 meters and about 700 fire hydrants on the Global Positioning System, commonly known as GPS.

I'm sure he didn't say that. The first online maps are expected in December.

New Guidance Encourage Open Data in EU

The European Commission has issued new guidelines on recommended standard licences, datasets and charging for the re-use of documents held by public sector organisations (10-page / 414KB PDF). In the guide it recommended that public bodies curtail licensing restrictions on the re-use of that information. The guidelines do not relate to documents held by public sector bodies in which third party copyright or database rights are contained.

Of note for geospatial data providing organizations and users:

The guidance particularly encouraged EU countries to make geospatial data, information on earth observation and the environment, transport data, national, regional and local statistical data and information from company registers available for re-use. It said these types of data are "in highest demand" among re-users of data within the EU.

Battlefield GIS Coming

The South Carolina Battlefield Preservation Trust has received a $75,000 American Battlefield Protection Program Grant from the National Park Service. The funds will allow researchers to create a database of Civil War and Revolutionary War sites in Charleston and Jasper counties.

Lots of good geospatial opportunities, too:

Doing the Work: The mapping project, expected to take about a year, will involve a GPS and a database technician as well as an archaeologist and two paid historians. There will also be a volunteer historian and two to four interns. Aerial laser mapping will be used but researchers will also walk the ground of each site where possible.

White House Explores Earth Observation and Disaster Response and Recovery

The White House is keeping busy. In two separate efforts the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) is reviewing geospatial technology initiatives in earth observation systems and in disaster response and recovery. There's a new report and a demo day complete with open source software.

Published Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

Written by Adena Schutzberg

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