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Economical land surveying and land development software for land surveyors, engineers, architects and construction.



NSPS Radio Hour — Sept. 1, 11 a.m. EDT
There will be no "live" NSPS Radio Hour on Sept. 1, Labor Day!

Labor Day was signed into law by President Grover Cleveland in 1894, but had actually become a popular "workingman's holiday" earlier in the 19th century. Observed on the first Monday in September, Labor Day pays tribute to the contributions and achievements of American workers.

NSPS and host Curt Sumner wish for each of you a wonderful holiday of rest and relaxation with your family and friends.

You can listen to the archive of the most recent dozen or so shows at Archives for each show are typically available for listening within a few days after the show airs.
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NCEES annual meeting actions
Among the actions taken during the recent (Aug. 21-22) NCEES annual business meetings, three are of particular interest to the surveying profession. Two of the three are reported on the NCEES website and are related to the NCEES Model Law prerequisite education and experience requirements for licensure as a professional engineers. The third action (unfortunately not reported on the NCEES website) relates to a motion which was briefly discussed during the Surveyors Forum, but introduced individually during the business meeting by Richard Smith, who sits on the New Jersey licensing board. The basic gist to the motion is that the NCEES Model Law should not include an "exception" for what are known as "engineering surveys." Smith argued that in order for licensed professional engineers to perform "incidental" surveying that is related to engineering projects they undertake, they must meet the education, experience, and examination requirements for licensure as a professional surveyor. Several other surveyor board members spoke on the issue, and a couple of amendments were offered. Some of the comments pointed out that education leading to licensure as a professional engineer includes virtually no components related to the practice of surveying. In the end, though, the concept failed by a significant margin.

NSPS News & Views hopes to be able to provide more in-depth information about this matter in future editions.

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Assisting the Republic of the Marshall Islands to delineate areas vulnerable to seawater inundation via updated geodetic control
Beginning Aug. 18 and continuing through Aug. 29, the National Geodetic Survey is working with Republic of the Marshall Islands to upgrade the geodetic control of Majuro Atoll following NGS' Height Modernization Guidelines. The project will assist RMI in developing new digital elevation models. The DEMs will in turn support modeling efforts to delineate locations vulnerable to seawater inundation during extreme high-tide events, predict future vulnerabilities, and develop adaptation strategies for projected sea level rise scenarios. NGS will be conducting training on project planning, GPS observations, and GPS processing and adjustments for staff of the RMI. The training will help surveyors achieve the most reliable accurate positions.

For more information, contact

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RENDEZVOUS! On the Old Spanish Line...

Come to the best national surveyor’s event of 2014 — the SHS RENDEZVOUS! Join the search for Andrew Ellicott’s lost ‘Spanish Mounds,’ on the old 1799 US border with Spain. Hosted by Surveyors Historical Society and the Alabama Society of Professional Land Surveyors, it’s Sept. 17-20 at Mobile, Alabama. You’re invited.

NOAA seeks applicants for Hydrographic Services advisory panel membership
NOAA is soliciting nominations for membership on the Hydrographic Services Review Panel, a federal advisory committee that advises the NOAA administrator on the agency's hydrographic programs, products, and technology. NOAA issued a Federal Register Notice that provides more information. As NOAA determines future priorities for hydrographic program development, advice from actual users of NOAA products is essential, and this panel is a vital part of that information-gathering process. Applications must be received by Oct. 10.

For more information, contact .

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Professional surveyor David Widmer installed as NCEES president
David Widmer, P.L.S., is the new president of the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying. Widmer is an emeritus member of the Pennsylvania State Registration Board for Professional Engineerings, Land Surveyors, and Geologists, and is the president of consulting firm Widmer Engineering, Inc.
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Click Here for Map of Active CSTs by State

Congress asks Small Business Administration to study occupational licensing
Citing a significant recent increase in the number of occupations that are subject to state licensing, the chairman of the Small Business Committee in the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Sam Graves (R-MO) has asked the Small Business Administration's office of advocacy to conduct a study of the economic impact of such regulation. In an Aug. 20 letter, Graves said almost one in three ccupations in the United States is now subject to licensing, with some studies suggesting the economic impact could approach $41.7 billion per year. NSPS, through the Council on Federal Procurement of Architectural & Engineering Services, is advising Rep. Graves and the SBA on the public health, welfare and safety benefits of licensing in architecture, engineering, surveying and mapping.
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Proposed rules to require V2V technology
Systems and applications that could help drivers avoid collisions, known as vehicle to vehicle technology, are the subject of proposed regulations announced by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. V2V systems, which utilize location data, GPS and digital maps, could prevent up to 592,000 crashes and save 1,083 lives per year. Public comments are being requested by Oct. 20.
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NSPS PAC meets with House candidate Donald Norcross (NJ)
Earlier this month, NSPS lobbyist John "JB" Byrd (right) met with State Senator Donald Norcross (D), a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives from the 1st District of New Jersey. The seat is currently vacant due to the resignation of Rep. Rob Andrews (D-NJ). Norcross is favored to win this open seat in a concurrent special and general election on Nov. 4. Byrd, representing the NSPS PAC, discussed surveying issues connected to floodplains, Hurricane Sandy recovery, underground infrastructure, as well as STEM education. Norcross is committed to making New Jersey affordable through the creation of public-private partnerships and other initiatives that stimulate economic development, revitalize neighborhoods and rejuvenate business districts. NSPS plans to work on these issues with Norcross in the next Congress.
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NSPS seeks legislation to reform to design-build and reverse auction contracts procuring surveying services
NSPS lobbyist John "JB" Byrd has been meeting with Congressional staff during the August recess, including aids to Sens. Kay Hagan (D-NC) and Claire McCaskill (D-MO), in support of legislation to reform the federal procurement processes for surveying and mapping contracts via design-build and reverse auctions processes. Sen. Hagan is on the Senate Armed Services Committee with jurisdiction over the National Defense Authorization Act, and Sen. McCaskill is Chair of the Subcommittee on Financial and Contracting Oversight of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, providing oversight over all government procurement issues. In May, NSPS co-signed a coalition letter outlining the need for reform. Design-build reform is necessary to address the uncertainty for small businesses submitting expensive technical proposals during the second step of the two-step procurement process. Procuring surveying and mapping services through reverse auctions is a direct violation of the Brooks Act and its qualifications based selection process. NSPS is working with a construction industry procurement coalition to urge the U.S. Senate to include reform provisions in the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act, as they were included by the U.S. House of Representatives when it passed its NDAA earlier this year.
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NSPS attends Congressional meeting advocating Digital Coast Act
Co-sponsors of the soon to be introduced "Digital Coast Act" in the United States Senate continue to be a priority for NSPS. The staff of Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) asked to hear from surveyors from Maine in support for the bill. NSPS lobbyist John "JB" Byrd is urging NSPS members and state surveying societies to contact their senators and urge them to cosponsor the bill. Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) plans to introduce the Senate companion to H.R. 1382, a bipartisan bill in the U.S. House that is sponsored by Representatives "Dutch" Ruppersberger (D-MD) and Don Young (R-AK). This bill would formally authorize the highly popular "Digital Coast" project in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration that provides geospatial data to our coastal communities. Current cosponsors include Sens. Mark Begich (D-AK), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Angus King (I-ME), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Maria Cantwell (D-WA). Sen. Baldwin is seeking to include a Republican cosponsor on the bill. Surveyors and state societies from coastal states (including the Great Lakes) with a Republican senator are urged to contact their respective senators and urge them to join Sen. Baldwin in cosponsoring this important bill.

At this point, visits, meetings and communications should be focused on Republican senators from coastal states. Targeted coastal Republican senators are: AL: Sessions, Shelby; AK: Murkowski; FL: Rubio; GA: Chambliss, Isakson; IL: Kirk; IN: Coats; LA: Vitter; ME: Collins; MS: Cochran, Wicker; NC: Burr; OH: Portman; PA: Toomey; SC: Graham, Scott; TX: Cornyn, Cruz; and WI: Johnson.

You can also contact these senators' legislative staff in Washington, D.C. To help identify staff, or for further assistance, please contact NSPS lobbyist John "JB" Byrd at or 703-787-6665.

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A unique opportunity for NSPS members to explore a growth market
A program of speakers and presentations that has never before been organized in one place at one time in the surveying, geospatial and engineering market awaits NSPS members at the Geospatial and Engineering International Conference, to be held September 25-26, 2014 at the Westin Hotel in Alexandria, Virginia.

This is a very cost-effective and efficient way for NSPS members to learn about exporting surveying and related services, data, products and technology. The conference is focused on where the work is, how to compete for it, what's available to help U.S. firms, and what is needed to go or grow globally.

The conference will provide private sector companies that are new or exploring markets outside the United States with information on how to work globally with experienced firms and deal with strategic planning, laws, culture, regulations, safety and insurance. Experienced firms working overseas will benefit from discussions with exporting experts and potential client, client agencies will present information on their projects and requirements, and U.S. government agencies that assist exporting companies will also be on the program.

NSPS is a participating organization in the conference. Members of NSPS qualify for a special members-only discount. Conference attendees are eligible for an additional $50 discount in addition to the early registration fee by making a hotel reservation at the Westin Alexandria (Alexandria, VA). Once an attendee has reserved a room, contact MAPPS to receive a special promotional code to receive the $50 discount. This offer will expire on September 4.

The conference is designed for surveying, geospatial and engineering professionals with a focus on private sector entry into international commerce for professional services. The two-day conference will provide a forum for education, business development, and networking.

The conference is being organized by MAPPS, the national association for private sector geospatial firms. Supporting organizations include Association of American Geographers (AAG), American Council of Engineering Companies of Metropolitan Washington (ACEC/MW), American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS), Construction Industry Round Table (CIRT), Global Spatial Data Infrastructure Association (GSDI), National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS), and the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (URISA). Professionals that are members of these organizations receive a registration discount.

For more information, visit

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Texas A&M Corpus Christi offering online course on introduction to surveying this fall
Classes begin Aug. 27. Contact Prof. Richard Smith for more information on paperwork you need to complete before you can register for the course. You can take the course as a degree candidate or as a non-degree candidate. This course involves field work, and to complete the labs, you must have an agreement with a licensed land surveyor who will agree to supervise your labs, provide the equipment and make sure you follow the lab exercises as written. Course instructor: Dr. Joe Paiva. Read about the program and course. The course is called GISC 2470 for four semester hours.
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Employment opportunities
Employment opportunities are posted on the NSPS website.

NEW LISTINGS Employers interested in posting job opportunities on the NSPS website should contact John D. Hohol at

Upcoming seminars/conferences
Due to the volume of requests we received to publish information about State Society conferences, use this link to access the information from the NSPS website.

The top five things you need to know about drones and GIS
Directions Magazine
The mere mention of "drones" conjures thoughts of bombs and missiles raining down on unsuspecting bad guys. However, most of today's drones, more accurately described as unmanned aerial vehicles, are or will be focused on generating data to solve peace-time applications.
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GNSS charts drought-driven tectonic 'uplift' in western U.S.
Inside GNSS
Precise GNSS measurements have revealed that the severe drought gripping the western United States in recent years is changing the landscape well beyond localized effects of water restrictions and browning lawns, according to scientists at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California at San Diego.
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NGA's map to put a world of geospatial intell in one place
Defense Systems
By 2018, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency envisions a seamless, dynamic Map of the World that enables users across the intelligence community to visualize and access integrated intelligence content fixed to accurate and authoritative geographic features on Earth.
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Majority support FCC rule requiring carriers to provide accurate indoor locations
GPS World
A new survey of more than 1,000 consumers found a dramatic gap between the limited location requirements for cell-phone carriers and broad public expectations that wireless callers can be found by emergency responders if they dial 9-1-1 in an emergency. According to the survey, two-thirds of cell-phone owners (66 percent) thought that wireless companies could help emergency responders locate them at least to their block, if they call 9-1-1 from inside their homes.
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News & Views

Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Dennis Hall, Executive Editor, 469.420.2656   
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