Washington State Geographic Information Council (WAGIC)

June 18, 1998 Meeting Minutes

Videoconference meeting originated from: Lacey, WA

Introductions- Larry Sugarbaker, WAGIC Chair

From Lacey, Larry Sugarbaker welcomed members in Mount Vernon, Seattle, Pasco, Vancouver, and Spokane.

Message from the new Chair- Larry Sugarbaker

Larry told the Council his goal is to continue implementing the ideas that came out of the Council’s last Strategic Planning Session. He indicated he is particularly interested in the Council following through on its desire to develop a plan that defines a strategic direction for GIS use in Washington State.

Larry said he also wants Council members to focus on the Year 2000 problem. He stated that this issue should not be taken lightly. He encouraged people to become involved in their organization’s Year 2000 efforts.

Larry also discussed the possibility of holding two face to face meeting per year with the entire Council. These meeting would replace two of the bi-monthly videoconference meetings. Larry asked people to think about this possibility and they could discuss it at a later date.

National Geodetic Survey (NGS) Update- Gary Peraso, Washington State NGS Coordinator

Gary stated that the International Earth Rotation Service is in the process of providing the world with a new global reference system. They are doing this through the creation of an International Terrestrial Reference Frame (ITRF), which is both three-dimensional and dynamic. Gary said that in order for the National Geodetic Survey (NGS) to use ITRF, they would need to do an interim adjustment of their current horizontal datum.

Instituting the ITRF:

The Earth Rotation Service will provide:

The NGS will:


NGS roles:


If people have questions they can contact Gary. Jeff Holm (DIS, WAGIC Coordinator) said he would provide a link, from the WAGIC website, to the NGS-HARN website.

Questions and/or Comments:

Ian Von Essen (Spokane County) stated he is concerned about the existing NAD 83 datum changing but the name remaining the same. He thinks this will cause confusion. Gary said this was a political decision that is not likely to change. Many states decided it would be easier to use the same name rather than change the name.

Ian also mentioned that the City of Spokane is using a pre 1929 vertical datum. The city would like to get all three Spokane entities working with the same vertical datum. Ian asked Gary what he thought they should use? Gary said it would probably work best to go to 88 and then eventually the technology will allow them to utilize 88 heights.

Update on ESRI Regional Office in Olympia and the direction ESRI is going in developing new products- Marty Balikov (Olympia Regional Manager)

(See the attached ESRI presentation)

Questions and/or Comments:

Larry Sugarbaker asked if ESRI is planning on helping organizations who are UNIX based change over to the NT/ArcInfo 8.0 environment (e.g. special transition tools). Marty said that ESRI has been discussing this issue but a solution has yet to be identified. ESRI is aware that this is a need and they are trying to find a way to accomplish this task.

Don Eginton (Seattle) asked what kind of support ESRI could provide to existing clients? Marty said that direct technical support could be supplied over the phone by calling the technical support person in Olympia. ESRI also helps with implementation services, and they also have consulting services.

Space Imaging- Remote Sensing/Satellite Imagery- Bob Wright

Space Imaging has:

The two major satellites in the industry, in regards to most natural resource activities, are the IRS 1C and IRS 1D. These two satellites are owned and operated by the Indian government. They use 5-meter, black and white resolution satellite imagery.

Space Imaging also has two 1-meter black and white/4-meter multi spectral satellites that will go up the first of the year, 1999. These are the first high-resolution satellites that will produce images/data that will be available to the public.

Space Imaging’s Imagery Resolution:

Bob showed examples of ForestView a desktop imaging environment developed in partnership with ESRI

Contact information:

Atterbury Consultants Inc.
3800 SW Cedar Hills Blvd. #280
Beaverton, OR 97005
(503) 646-5293
(503) 644-1683
Web: www.atterbury.com
Email: rawright@atterbury.com

For more information or examples of available images and services you can visit their website at www.atterbury.com.

Questions and/or Comments:

Larry Sugarbaker asked if the advantage of this technology is the frequency at which you can obtain it? Bob said that this is the advantage of the satellites. All the satellites run on a 24 to 27 day cycle. The two Indian satellites shoot the same spot on the ground every 48 days. They can expect to get good coverage of the Northwest at least once a year due to environmental factors such as cloud coverage.

Motion for new Regional Coordinator for Southeast Region- Randy Mills (Benton County PUD)

Randy announced that he has to step down as the Southeast Region Coordinator because of changing job duties. He said he still plans to maintain his affiliation with the Council, especially with the Local Government Workgroup. Randy made a motion that Chris Wright from Benton County be appointed the new Southeast Region Coordinator. The motion was 2nd and passed by voice vote. Chris Wright is the new Southeast Region Coordinator.

Chris is employed by Benton County and he manages the GIS development project, which include GPS, parcel mapping, and digital ortho photography. He is also involved with watershed planning and utility management. Chris has a BS in Geology and 11 years experience on the East Coast and in the Pacific Northwest. Chris thanked Randy for the opportunity to become involved with the Council as the Southeast Region Coordinator.

Project Status Update from the Standards Workgroup- Joy Denkers (Department of Ecology)

Joy presented an update on the three projects that the Standards Workgroup has been addressing over the last twelve months:

Metadata Guideline Update Project

The objective of this project is to review and update the Washington State Geospatial Metadata Guidelines document. The group has decided to develop a new document rather than modify or change the original document. The new guidelines will reflect the Council's more singular focus on NSDI initiatives particularly on the FGDC metadata content standards as an enabler of the Washington State Spatial Clearinghouse node. The group is in the process of drafting the new guidelines and will be seeking input from the Framework Management Group and Clearinghouse Steering Committee.

Metadata Collection Tool Project

This project focused on identifying and promoting the use of tools that are capable of supporting the FGDC Metadata standards in Washington State. This project is complete. Three basic metadata collection tool types were identified. Then, out of a number of potential tools, several were chosen as representative of the various groups. These were subsequently included in the one-day metadata creation workshops that Jeff Holm has been conducting across the state. Workshops have been conducted or scheduled in the following regions:

WA GIS Resource List Project

Phase I of this project is complete. The workgroup initially developed and tested a survey to collect GIS resource information. Near the end of the testing period the workgroup became aware that the Council would be administering the FGDC/NSGIC Framework Data survey for the state. Given the similarity between the surveys and the precedence placed on the FGDC/NSGIC survey it was determined by the workgroup to use the responses from the Framework Data Survey for the resource list.

The data from the national survey should be available to the workgroup at the end of the summer. The workgroup will decide how to provide access to the data when they have had a chance to actually work with the raw data from NSGIC. The general approach for Phase II will be to make the GIS resource information available through the Washington State Spatial Information Clearinghouse. Jeff Holm is leading this project so if people have questions or suggestions they can contact him.

Joy mentioned that one workgroup member raised a concern that the national survey only covered eight framework layers, while other layers were not covered. Therefore, the group may have more work to do in the future to collect information on other spatial data layers.

Joy closed by asking the Council if there are any other GIS standards that they think the Standards Workgroup should address? – Larry Sugarbaker asked the Council members to think about this and they will discuss it at the next meeting.

WAGIC Budget Report for 97-98- Jeff Holm

Jeff reviewed the 1997-1998 fiscal year budget with the Council, including the variances between projected budget and actual (estimated) expenses. The Council closed the '97-'98 fiscal period with an excess amount of $6,040.00.

The positive variance was due to an unused $5000 Special Project Fund and several other small positive variances. This dollar amount will carry forward into the 1998-1999 budget.

Jeff then shared the proposed budget for 1998-1999 fiscal year. There was one new item included in the proposed budget, which was funding for the WAGIC Chair to attend the two National States Geographic Information Council's meetings - an annual Fall meeting and a Mid-winter weekend workshop. A motion was made by Jeff to adopt the new budget; the motion was seconded and passed by voice vote. The Council adopted the 1998-1999 fiscal year budget.

(See the attached 1998-1999 budget sheet for specific WAGIC expenses)

Jeff reminded the Council that voluntary membership funds are only used to offset selected Council expenses, which represent approximately twenty percent of the total cost. The balance of the funding is provided by DIS.

The adoption of the '98-'99 Budget will kick off the voluntary membership funding drive. The 1998-1999 invoicing preference forms will be faxed to current member organizations during the week of June 23, 1998. These forms will give organizations an opportunity to specify the level they would like to participate at in the voluntary Membership Funding Program.

Local Government / WAURISA discussion update- Council

Due to time constraints, this agenda item was rescheduled for the August 20th meeting.

Framework Management Group- Discussion regarding WAGIC affiliation and role(s)- Council

Larry Sugarbaker mentioned that at the last Framework Management Group (FMG) meeting there was discussion about what the working relationships should be between the FMG and other GIS groups, including: WAGIC, local government organizations, federal government organizations, and other affiliations.

Larry indicated that there are actually two things being discussed:

  1. what the relationship of the FMG should be to the Council (and other state and regional groups) and,
  2. a discussion that will result in a recommendation by the FMG addressing how the Council should respond to the February '97 invitation by the FGDC for the Council to become a formal FGDC Cooperating Group.

There are meetings scheduled for July 9 and July 23 to discuss these issues. If you are interested in attending please contact Sandra Bahr at (360) 902-1544. The FMG will bring recommendations back to the Council at the August 1998 meeting.

The next Framework Workgroup Management meeting is scheduled for August 18 at the Department of Natural Resources.

Recognition of Tom Nolan's Contribution as Council Chair.

Jeff Holm recognized and thanked Tom Nolan (WAGIC Chair June '96 through May '98) for all the work he did for the Council during the past two years. Tom was presented an engraved desk plaque and will receive a framed letter of recognition from the Council Administrator that reads (in part)

"........ Under Tom Nolan's leadership the Council has:

These initiatives have been fundamental to the success and growth of the Washington State Geographic Information Council. While Mr. Nolan would be the first to point out that these milestones were achieved through the efforts of many of the Council membership, it is important to recognize that they were accomplished during his tenure as Council Chair. " (excerpt end)

Closing Remarks - Larry Sugarbaker

Larry indicated that discussion is underway to address the Council's desire to create a process that will result in a Strategic Geographic Information Plan. Larry asked Council members to consider a Fall workshop to kick-off the planning process and will create time on the August agenda to provide more discussion. Don Eginton (Seattle) said he thinks having a strategic planning session would be a great idea and looks forward to discussing it at the August meeting.

Meeting Adjourned: 12:00 pm – next meeting - August 20, 1998 at 10:00 am