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NSPS Radio Hour Guest set for August 12 - 11:00 am EDT
Please join host Curt Sumner for the August 12 edition of the show. Curt is interested in hearing your suggestions for topics you would like to hear about, or guests you would like to hear from on future shows. Please contact Curt at firstname.lastname@example.org with your suggestions.
During the show, listen for the "key question" and be the first to email the correct answer to email@example.com to win a $50 gift certificate from our sponsor, Parker Davis Quik Stakes. No purchase is required to receive the gift certificate. Winners limited to once every three months.
New Member Benefit!
NSPS and TireBuyer.com have teamed up to bring you exclusive member savings on tires and wheels. TireBuyer.com is the fastest, easiest way to buy tires and rims. Save 10 percent instantly. To learn more about this new member benefit, click here.
Did you know that the CST Board meets four times per year around the country to grade, review and write new questions?
Did You Know that NSPS Membership Provides Access to a Multi-Faceted Exclusive Business Insurance Program!
To learn more, Click Here
Highway research funds available to state transportation departments
State highway departments have been encouraged to apply for the second round of funding in the Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP2). The process for grants under the SHRP2 implementation assistance program opened on August 2, 2013. Categories, many of which require surveying and mapping data, include Expediting Project Delivery, to address or avoid 16 common constraints to speed delivery of transportation planning and environmental review projects; Railroad-DOT Mitigation Strategies, such as model legal agreements, recommended practices, sample contracts, and training materials to resolve underlying sources of conflicts and streamline review and agreement processes; Managing Risk in Rapid Renewal Projects, to identify, assess, mitigate, allocate, and monitor risk on accelerated reconstruction projects, and Performance Specifications for Rapid Highway Renewal, to use example construction performance specifications requiring greater quality control for accelerated road and bridge projects in topic areas such as asphalt and concrete pavements, concrete bridge decks, and work zone traffic control.
FAR amended to standardize past performance evaluations
The Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) was amended August 1 to provide for standardized past performance evaluation factors and performance rating categories for use government-wide and to require that past performance information be entered into the Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS). The final rule, which becomes effective on September 3, 2013, leaves intact the existing process to appeal an evaluation and places an emphasis on monitoring the quality and timeliness of submission of past performance information.
NSPS to participate in conference on exporting opportunities for U.S. surveyors
Interested in contracts for surveying services outside the United States? Gain information and practical knowledge at a "Geospatial and Engineering International Conference - Entering and Expanding Global Business Opportunities," November 13-14, 2013 at the Westin Hotel in Alexandria, VA. NSPS is a participating organization, providing NSPS members with a special registration discount.
The conference will enable firms to export their services, data and products to overseas clients. It will feature agencies and organizations that finance, procure, coordinate, and manage geospatial and engineering projects outside the United States with presentations on their programs, budgets, requirements, and procurement procedures. Agencies that assist U.S. companies with exporting will inform firms of services available to assist with expansion into the global market.
Private sector professionals experienced in international business will share best practices and lessons learned. The conference will also include unique teaming, partnering and networking opportunities. Session topics will be geared toward firms that are new to exporting and those who seek to expand their international portfolio. Participating agencies, speakers and sponsors will be announced at a later date and time. Interested professionals can sign up for email information on the conference web site.
Federal Permitting Improvement Act of 2013 seeks GIS data use
S. 1397, a bipartisan bill to improve the efficiency, management, and interagency coordination of the Federal permitting process, was introduced July 30 by Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) along with Senators Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Joe Donnelly, Mike Enzi (R-WY), and John Barrasso (R-WY). The bill seeks to reform and expedite environmental reviews on federal projects. Included in the bill is a provision that requires the lead agency on a project to make information available to each participating agency regarding the environmental, historic, and socioeconomic resources located within the project area and the general locations of the alternatives under consideration, and provides that such information “may be based on existing data sources, including geographic information systems mapping.”
NGAC seeks new members
The Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) and the Department of the Interior have announced the next call for nominations for appointments to the National Geospatial Advisory Committee (NGAC). Nominations are due by August 12. The NGAC provides advice and recommendations on Federal geospatial policy and management issues and provides a forum to convey views representative of partners in the geospatial community. The NGAC was established by the Department of the Interior on behalf of the Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) under the authority of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA).
NSPS will be nominating Gary Thompson (NSPS President 2001) for a second term on the NGAC.
Young Surveyors Selected to Represent NSPS at International Event
Two talented and active young surveyors have been selected from the many excellent applicants who applied to represent NSPS at the V International Training and Professional Course in Topography for Young Surveyors in Lisbon, Portugal.
Amanda Askren and Adam Schleicher, NSPS members, were selected to attend and participate in the annual course founded and organized by CNGeGL, the Italian national surveying association.
The American Surveyor
In the aftermath of hurricane and flooding damage from storms, opportunities exist for surveyors to be part of the planning, mapping, recovery and construction. Locations are everywhere the water touched, and even higher in the watershed, as cumulative effects of non-disaster-related development sends runoff rushing downhill to the floodplains.
Trimble introduces next-generation tablet PC for surveying
Trimble has introduced its next-generation Trimble Tablet PC for surveying. The Trimble Tablet is a lightweight, rugged and highly mobile field computer that can operate with Trimble's suite of receivers and total stations to provide a complete surveying solution. With Trimble Access field software onboard, the Trimble Tablet streamlines the flow of information between the field and office while also allowing surveyors to run the applications they need to perform office work directly from the field.
New functionality and features in ArcGIS 10.2
ArcGIS 10.2 is now shipping ... have you had a chance to use it yet? Just yesterday, Esri officially announced the update and key functionality including enhanced UI, real time data access and more. Tripp Corbin has penned a few thoughts about this latest release in his latest blog post and looks at some of the new functionality you'll find in 10.2.
Europe permits free access to Sentinel Earth observation data
The European Commission has agreed to permit free access to data from its Sentinel series of Earth observation satellites, concluding that any harm to private-sector satellite operators will be outweighed by the expected growth in value-added services derived from the data. After a long process of evaluation that included input from the European Association of Remote Sensing Companies, the commission has agreed to align itself with a policy already adopted by the 20-nation European Space Agency.