Washington Cadastral Framework

NILS Comments

Washington Cadastral Framework Commenting Partners

Clallam County

Clark County

Cowlitz County

Lincoln County

Longview Fibre Company

Snohomish County

Spokane County

Stevens County Partnership

Thurston County

U.S. Bureau of Reclamation

U.S. Geological Survey

Washington Department of Community Trade and Economic Development

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife

Washington Department of Natural Resources

Washington Department of Revenue

Washington Department of Transportation

Weyerhaeuser Company

Yakima County


Concern that there is no project schedule.

Concern that the project is drawing out.

What is happening with Forest Service participation?

Getting ESRI to develop the standards into data and tools is a really good idea.

What is the difference between NILS and the work that ESRI is doing to develop COTS products?

1.0 Executive Summary

I was pleasantly surprised that the project included so many of the tasks which interact together to collect, process and manage the cadastral information and operations. The generalization throughout the project leaves me concerned whether the specific functions which must be executed in detail will actually perform all the needed functions or will be so difficult to learn, locate and execute that they will not be used. It will require extensive knowledge in several professions to bring this together into a usable program. If successful this program could revolutionize land management in this century as much as aerial photography or GIS did in the last century.

If you can address all of those issues you will be doing great. I

was not surprised by the low county representation and/or interest.

Counties have to do this work anyway, map and maintain parcel information.

For counties already mapping parcels, the Cadastral program appears to just

be more work with little benefits to the county. More metadata

documentation, a different structure for maintaining data, different

coordinate system, two systems to update into, etc. The project has more

benefits to state and federal programs.

Afford ability: Will it support conversion from existing databases?

Makes sense at a high level.

The object oriented methodology needs to be more specific.

Need to make sure that county needs are included in the data. Orientation seems to be federal.

2.0 Introduction

Do all of the fabrics have to be seamless?

ESRI commercialization of cadastral standards will be a good thing.

Need ESRI tools to work with the cadastral standards.

Glad to hear that other GIS vendors will have the opportunity to develop the standards.

3.0 Land Records

Document management - will land records be incorporated with NILS or through 3rd party software?

Non-PLS examples: assessor, auditor, city subdivisions? (Aquatic lands?)

The survey background was useful. Now, I know what they do.

The Cadastral Data Content Standard divisions of PLSS seem contrived and artificial in the comparison with the named county recorder fields (Table 3.1). There are only a few kinds of areas that townships can be divided in which the township can designate the unit: sections, donation land claims, protracted blocks, and tracts. There are only a few kinds of areas that sections can be divided in which the section designates the unit: aliquot parts, lots, and parcels. Also, in the examples of blocks, lots, and parcels, counties are generally referring to non-PLSS subdivisions with blocks and lots. Parcels are county identifiers for ownership and taxation - not PLSS.

Surprised how little county perspective incorporated into the document.

Need to ensure that data and metadata are defined comprehensively to meet the needs of each partner and allow integration of data between partners.

Each partner needs to be able to find the best place for their data within the shared data structure. The wording must be exact, and be recognizable to all.

Aren't ALTA standards supported in the data content standard? If not, why not include here?

Why discuss county and ALTA standards when not referred to in the use cases?

Addresses business needs well.

Why so much detail in this section and then not specifically addressed in the use cases? Where is the use case for land records?

3.3 Third paragraph, second and last sentences: "licensed land survey" should probably read "licensed land surveyor".

3.3: Fifth paragraph and Figure 3.5 should go between the second and third paragraph.

4.0 User Environment

Not meaningful to what we want to do.

Private organizations also need to maintain their land holdings with more detail and better incorporation into financial systems.

5.0 Technology Environment

Wizard orientation implies good for people who don't know what they're doing, will take longer for those who are experts, and underlying structure too complex. Need a toolbox environment for expert and flexible use.

How does the NILS project relate to the development of standard ESRI products?

COTS software will greatly help in the standardization and communication processes.

Technology discussion too high level to be useful.

Commercial Off-The-Shelf (COTS) software will still have to be customized in order to make it useful to own business operations.

6.0 Use Case Development

The use cases are too broad to even determine which use case is applicable for a specific business operation. Need to identify specific business operations to build use cases, e.g. record document in public records, aggregate/segregate county parcel, write legal description, locate legal description, plan ownership/lease land transaction, record ownership/lease land transaction, etc.

Make sure that NILS models business operations are not software operations.

No use cases develop land records operations. Very vague if Geocommunicator addresses land records management and its connection to spatial database.

Where definitions are general, not sure that specific cases are going to be covered.

Private and tribal organizations which would use land survey and land management software should be included in the review process.

7.0 General Requirements

Feature level metadata is critical.

Examples of object-oriented data would be helpful.

History management must address both the lineage of the features and the time lines of create, update, delete.

Are there use cases for general requirements?

8.0 Survey Management

Not much need for field side coordination of measurements at this time. Most of our land survey office work is done as separate projects. Most of our GIS work is based on survey records not field notes.

Is there some means of tracking monumentation, corner history?

9.0 Measurement Management 

Glad to see least squares adjustment included. Does this include a choice of adjustment models besides survey traverse network, e.g. photogrammetric, GPS?

10.0 Parcel Management

Do the fabrics have to be seamless? There needs to be room for disputes and disagreements to be shown until the courts can resolve them.

11.0 GeoCommunicator

Term definitions are not very helpful. Many cases of redefining terms that would otherwise be in common use with some other meaning.

Appendix A. Glossary

Need a complete glossary of terms in the document not just in the use cases.

Metadata needs a more careful definition. (See FGDC Content Standards for Digital Geospatial Metadata Workbook.)

Appendix B.

Greg Tudor is representing the Washington Cadastral Framework Partnership as well as WA DNR.

Appendix D.

Active/passive role discussion useful to carry over examples into own land records work.