June 17, 2010 -- Legislation to establish a statewide geospatial coordination council, in Pennsylvania, was introduced June 8 by Rep. Russ Fairchild (R-85). The bill, HB 2300, was introduced with 59 cosponsors and referred to the Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness committee.
Pennsylvania is one of only three states that do not have a geospatial coordination council. Such a council would benefit the citizens of the Commonwealth by providing an advisory panel from the public, private, non-profit and academic communities that provide critical geospatial data, services, products, technologies and applications. Geospatial is the base data for mapping, planning, land inventories, emergency preparedness, transportation, environmental management, economic development, critical infrastructure and many other applications.
"We are thankful for the leadership of Rep. Fairchild and the support of the many organizations that have supported HB 2300. I am also grateful to the 59 bipartisan members of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives who have cosponsored the bill upon introduction of the legislation," said Mike Shillenn, (Photo Science, West Chester, PA) PA-MAPPS President.
A study conducted in 2009 for the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania (CCAP) called for a Statewide Coordination Council. The Federally-funded study was supported by ten geospatial organizations throughout the Commonwealth, including PA-MAPPS.
PA-MAPPS, the first state chapter of MAPPS, is open to private firms in the geospatial community including those in photogrammetry, satellite and airborne remote sensing, hydrography, aerial and satellite image processing, surveying, GPS, and GIS data collection and conversion services in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. PA-MAPPS has two membership categories; Member Firms: geospatial service firms with offices and employees based in Pennsylvania and Associate Members: companies that do business in but not having a physical office or businesses in the Commonwealth, or those that provide hardware, software, products and services to the geospatial profession in the Keystone State. Firms in PA-MAPPS are also members of MAPPS.
Formed in 1982, MAPPS is the only national association exclusively comprised of private firms in the remote sensing, spatial data and geographic information systems field in the United States. The MAPPS membership spans the entire spectrum of the geospatial community, including Member Firms engaged in satellite and airborne remote sensing, surveying, photogrammetry, aerial photography, LIDAR, hydrography, bathymetry, charting, aerial and satellite image processing, GPS, and GIS data collection and conversion services. MAPPS also includes Associate Member Firms, which are companies that provide hardware, software, products and services to the geospatial profession in the United States and other firms from around the world. Independent Consultant Members are sole proprietors engaged in consulting in or to the geospatial profession, or provides a consulting service of interest to the geospatial profession.
MAPPS provides its 180+ member firms opportunities for networking and developing business-to-business relationships, information sharing, education, public policy advocacy, market growth, and professional development and image enhancement.
For more information on MAPPS, please visit www.MAPPS.org.