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NSPS Radio Hour: 40th anniversary of Brooks Act
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Listeners were reminded during the Oct. 22 show that this Saturday, Oct. 27, is the 40th anniversary of President Nixon signing into law the original Brooks Act, Public Law 92-582, formalizing the requirement that Qualifications Based Selection is to be used to procure services defined as "architectural and engineering" for projects funded using federal money. During his appearance on the show, COFPAES Administrator John Palatiello also noted that although "surveying and mapping" services were considered to be subject to the original Brooks Act, it wasn't until 1988 that Congress passed an amendment to specifically include "surveying and mapping" as among the professional services that are to be procured using Brooks Act procedures for projects funded using federal money.

Forty-seven states followed the federal lead after 1972 and passed what have come to be known as "mini-Brooks Act" laws. While those state laws vary to some degree in their language, their basic tenets are like those of the Brooks Act.

NSPS (formerly as part of ACSM) is a long-time member of COFPAES (Council on Federal Procurement of Architectural and Engineering Services), and works very successfully with COFPAES to address situations brought forth by members and non-members in which violations of the requirement to use QBS are identified both on the federal and state levels.

To hear the entire Oct. 22 NSPS Radio Hour, visit and select "Archives."

The guest for the Oct. 29 NSPS Radio Hour will be Jim Whitehead, a Virginian now working as a surveyor in Maryland, who is among a large number of surveyors across the country who have a keen interest in history, in particular the history of our nation's battles and battlefields.

When he joins host Curt Sumner, Jim will just have returned from a visit to Europe, where he walked one of the battlefields where our fellow American troops fought during World War II.

Be sure to listen at 11 a.m. Eastern on Monday to hear about Jim's love of history and his adventures related to it.

NSPS sale item of the week
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Solved Surveying Problems, 3rd Edition. Sale Price: $40 plus shipping. Members save $27. You can order online or by phone.

How to order:

Online: and enter the eStore. Select "Surveying," then "Exam Preparation."

Phone: 240-439-4615, ext. 105

Win a Schonstedt Magnetic Locator of your choice
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Winner drawing: Dec. 17, during the NSPS Radio Hour. Winner will be notified via phone or email, announced on this Website, and at

No purchase required. Open to licensed professional land surveyors, public sector surveyors and students or educators of surveying/geomatics. Employees of Schonstedt Instrument Company and its authorized dealers are not eligible to participate.

Visit to sign up!

2013 Scholarship Program
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Each year, through the National Society of Professional Surveyors Foundation, $25,000 in scholarships funded by a variety of individuals, companies and organizations are made available to encourage and support college education in geospatial sciences. These scholarships are a great opportunity for college students enrolled in surveying, mapping, geographic information systems and geodetic science programs. The scholarships are awarded in four eligibility categories. The application deadline is March 15, 2013. Visit for details.

Group health insurance through NSPS, MMIC
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One of your association benefits is the ability to obtain a free no‐cost, no‐obligation individual or group health insurance quote.

PLEASE NOTE: Most health insurance plans renew in the first quarter of each year. If your health insurance plan is renewing, this is an excellent opportunity to obtain alternative health insurance quotes to compare to your renewal. MMIC has contracted nationally with a number of health insurance companies to provide a wide variety of benefits for your review.

ALTA/ACSM survey standards
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Q: I am a licensed Land Surveyor in New England. Section 4 of the 2011 ALTA/ACSM Standards (Records Research) states that "documents necessary to ascertain, if possible, the junior/senior relationship pursuant to Section 6.B.vii. are to be provided to the surveyor." I interpret this as "they" (whoever "they" are) should provide those documents on adjoiners necessary to determine junior/senior rights. More

An explosive field for surveying
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It might not be obvious from a distance, but mining is a precise business. All the drilling and blasting required to extract valuable raw materials must be meticulously planned ahead of time to maximize profitability, ensure worker safety and minimize environmental impact. The use of accurate design metrics is therefore imperative. More

The new cartographers: OpenStreetMap's world takeover
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OpenStreetMap, a free crowdsourced online world map started eight years ago, has seen its ranks swell to over 800,000 volunteer mapmakers around the world — 300,000 in the last year alone — rapidly becoming the go-to source of map data for successful tech brands including Apple, Foursquare and Wikipedia, as well as for government agencies like the National Parks Service, all of whom are wary of Google's decision to begin charging for heavy use of its Maps API starting in January 2012. More

National geologic map database gets a face lift
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The U.S. Geological Survey and the Association of American State Geologists partner to launch a redesigned database of standardized geoscience information, the National Geologic Map Database. In concert with the inaugural, multi-agency Geologic Map Day, the USGS and AASG are pleased to release a significantly updated infrastructure and a new "look" to the NGMDB. More

Indoor location tests ahead, mapping under scrutiny
GPS World    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
October was a month of shows, rumors and announcements. Testing of competing indoor location positioning technologies is being planned by the FCC; prospects for some companies will ride on the public results. Apple may be turning to TomTom to save it from its mapping inaccuracy issues, dubbed Mapplegate. This month's CTIA show was flat; attendees were wondering if it was the last chapter of the fall show. More

GNSS augmentations
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Contrary to a widely held public impression, the elimination of GPS Selective Availability in 2000 did not take care of the needs that many users have for enhanced GNSS capabilities. Indeed, various "augmentations" have been developed to meet the requirements of some applications for better accuracy, availability, or integrity (the assurance of the quality of a signal) than are available from GNSS signals in space. More

News & Views
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Dennis Hall, Senior Content Editor, 469.420.2656   
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