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2015 SCAug South Central Arc User Group conference summary of presentations


Geospatial Data Governance – It’s a Strategy not a Project!
Ellen West Nodwell, IntegraShare Solutioneering, Inc.

Organizations struggle to manage data sustainably, if at all.  Geospatial data is even more complex to manage, in as much as often it depends on data coming from somewhere else, geocoded attributes, or elsewise.  Why is it a challenge to keep our maps “right on” with positioning and attribute accuracy?  What happens to the data?  How can “good data go bad”?  What can organizations do? Implementing a geospatial governance strategy is one way.  Geospatial data governance is not a project, it is a journey of sustainability.  It is about people, processes and technology working together to keep the quality in geospatial data.  This must be considered from the top to the bottom of an organization that wants its maps to be trusted and used as a dependable source for information for decision making.  Analysis of bad data yields bad results.If you don’t have good and trustworthy maps, why go to the trouble to use maps at all?  Bad maps make trouble!

Winston County, MS (Louisville Tornado)
Scott L Trapolino, GISP, DeSoto County

An EF-4 Tornado touched down outside of Winston County, MS at 3:51 PM on April 28, 2014. This EF-4 tornado ran for a length of 35 miles, maximum span of 3/4 of a mile in width, wind speeds reaching 185 mph, 647 damaged structures (including the only county hospital), 10 fatalities and unknown injuries. This presentation will include key elements used in Primary Damage Assessment and simplistic analysis examples that can be used by GIS Professionals to assist State and Federal Emergency Management Official’s in Damage Assessment and Basic Decision Making.  The data collection and analysis for this natural disaster would have not been possible without quality GIS data provided by Golden Triangle Planning and Development District.  "The real value of GIS is NOT in the response phase, by then it’s too late…"

Mobile Voter Line Wait – A Story of Citizen Engagement, Partnerships andPanic!
Tim Nolan & Gabi Voicu, Collin County, & Michael Parma, GISi

Collin County IT collaborated with our Elections Office to provide a solution to address long line waits during popular elections.  The Elections Office needed an answer to alleviate long voter line waits without giving the impression that voters were being sent away from a polling site.  The IT staff learned that it is a violation of voter laws to send people from a polling location – even if it is to help out the voter.  How do you inform voters that they can vote at another location with a shorter line without explicitly telling them?  The solution – strategically placed QR Codes that show the closest polling location and the approximate line wait time on the voter’s mobile device.  The voter can then chose for themselves to leave their place in a long line to seek out shorter one. We will tell the story of upgrading software and developing a new version of our Voter Line Wait app two (2) weeks prior to a major Election. 

Spatial Analysis of Opioid Mortality and EMS Administration of Naloxone in Oklahoma
J.L. Gilpen, MS, NREMT-I; K.E. Stewart, PhD; M.Q. Lansdale, MPH; Y. Wan, PhD

Identify high-risk areas of opiate overdose using GIS to compare opiate-related overdose mortality data and EMS naloxone administration data.
On 06/14/2014 House Bill 1782 took effect providing statutory revisions to Administration of opiate antagonists (§ 63-1-2506.1) allowing all first responders to administer naloxone.
Patient-level data from the Oklahoma EMS Information System and vital statistics death data were used in conjunction with GIS techniques and spatial scan statistics to generate risk maps for areas with lower-than-expected naloxone use.
Between 01/01/2011 and 06/03/2014, 13,064 instances of naloxone administration were reported. Four clusters of statistically significant, higher-than-expected naloxone administration were identified (1.01<RR<9.0, P=.001). Analysis revealed 19 clusters of lower-than-expected naloxone administration. The clusters of lower-than-expected usage correlated with basic and intermediate licensed EMS agencies. 
Analysis of spatial risk distribution may be useful identifying EMS agencies that would benefit from the Naloxone Training and Administration for EMS Personnel Program. 

Open Data Denton, TX: Using ESRI ArcOnline Tools
Kevin Babcock, City of Denton &  GChad Spratt, Technology Services – GIS

Open data solutions for government entities are gaining popularity across the country. The City of Denton Technology Services department was tasked, by the Committee on Citizen Engagement, with creating an Open Data solution that accomplished multiple objectives: 1) Provide an interactive portal for community data access 2) Increasingly incorporate automation in processes concerning mapping and data distribution to the public 3) Resources used in achieving these goals should already exist within the city (e.g.; limited budget for creating Open Data Portal). Once achieved, the city’s Open Data Portal underwent multiple stages of refinement. In its current iteration, the city’s data portal increases operation transparency via public data access across a growing list of departments.Direction for the form/role of the city’s Open Data Portal hinges on feedback from the community, use of analytics to monitor site usage, and cost-benefit analysis.

Centralizing GIS in Harris County
Johnny Brown, Harris County ITC

Harris County took steps to update methodologies and practices with new techniques, fresh ideas, and industry recognized best practices resulting in a more reliable GIS.  The most significant development is the centralized spatial data repository. The repository employs ESRI ArcServer technology to store and serve centralized, official and common base data to county agencies and the public.  Several applications that utilize spatial data: Park and address locators, Hike & Bike Trail apps, Police & Fire Department apps… now employ data from the repository. Requests for spatially-based applications continue to increase.

Building the Texas Emergency GIS Response Team
David W. Allen, Texas Emergency GIS Response Team

Past disasters in our area and across the state have underscored the need for a deployable mapping team that can work remotely or on-site to provide critical mapping and analysis to Emergency Management Coordinators. To meet this need, a volunteer group was formed from GIS professionals who train on emergency mapping techniques for all hazards and respond to disasters – the Texas Emergency GIS Response Team (Tx EGRT). The presentation will show the structure of the group, examples of exercises and responses in which the team has participated, and information on how you can get involved.

Ten Years of Gulfport GIS: Survival and Evolution since Hurricane 

Emma Strong, Mike Miller & Brian Deming, City of Gulfport

In the ten years since Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast of Mississippi and Louisiana, the City of Gulfport and our GIS have gone through many changes and updates.  The people in the city and the office have changed, as some left and others came and went.  The office was located in a trailer for three years before the building was repaired.  Our hardware and software have continued to be upgraded.  A few policy and methodology changes have occurred, including the addition of a digital plat submission policy.  Several new datasets and feature classes have been added since Katrina, and all others have been updated on a regular basis.  Some additions include 2007 and 2012 imagery, and an inventory of city-owned buildings and properties.  Our online mapping services have evolved from Java to Flex to ArcGIS Online, which has brought GIS to other city departments.

You Got Your Chocolate in My Peanut Butter
Garri Grossi, GISP, Interstate Batteries

ESRI’s Business Analyst Desktop tool is an essential part of any corporate strategy or business plan, but did you know it has many applications for use in the local, state, and federal environments? This presentation will describe the various data and tools within BA Desktop and how they could benefit your governmental agency’s analysis needs.

Increasing River Flooding Situational Awareness: A GIS Extent Mapping Approach
Jared Allen, NOAA/National Weather Service - Austin/San Antonio, TX

Situational awareness of river flooding and its time evolution through the use of flood extent mapping is critical for emergency management resource allocation, decision making, and overall public alertness. However, current National Weather Service (NWS) mapping efforts for flood extents per gauge site can equate to $10,000-50,000 and six months to two years of resource expenditures before finalization. To offset these high costs, an experimental GIS method for deriving river flood extents has been developed in partnership with the Corps of Engineers. Through a GIS protocol and the use of the Flood Estimation Simulation Model (FESM), early results indicate near 70-95% accuracy and completion times in a matter of days, if not hours. Strong spatial correlations using the kappa coefficient statistic show quality controlled flood extents to have substantial to near perfect agreement with NWS standards (0.70 – 0.99). This technique has already saved resources in an operational setting, and through the use of dynamic web maps, has increased internal and NWS core partner situational awareness during river flooding episodes.

Opening Up the Vault: GIS and Open Data in Stafford, Texas
Jonathan Farmer, City of Stafford

Across the nation, citizens are clamoring for open and transparent government. They want to know what their tax dollars are being spent on, trends in crime rates, and when that one street is finally scheduled to be repaved. Many large and medium sized governmental entities have responded with elaborate data portals, communications tools, and civic hacking events. While these changes are welcome, smaller governmental entities have not been able to keep up, largely due to cost. ESRI’s Open Data Portal and Web GIS platform allow those smaller entities to get in the game.The City of Stafford, Texas is a small suburb located southwest of Houston comprised of 7 square miles. The City utilizes ArcGIS Online technology and other cloud based technologies to share data, deliver web maps, and facilitate community involvement. All of this with 1 person and a GIS budget of less than $6,000.

A Geospatial Solution for Environmental Justice Reviews
Rachel Turney-Work, ENERCON

In 1994, President Clinton signed Executive Order 12898 directing each Federal Agency to consider environmental justice (EJ) by identifying disproportionate and adverse health or environmental effects of its activities on minority and low-income populations. Subsequently, all projects requiring a NEPA analysis must also include EJ reviews. To comply with this requirement, GIS has been implemented as an effective tool to combine demographic, American Community Survey, and regional data to effectively and quantitatively assess potential impacts to identified minority and low-income populations. This in turn allows for the identification of mitigation measures to reduce or prevent impacts and also reduces the risk for contentions and project impacts. In short, GIS has provided the perfect tool to combine socioeconomic impact analyses with a geographic component in an effective, repeatable and defensible process. All of which are necessary when working on projects that receive a high degree of scrutiny and review.

The Future of GIS: Some Thoughts
Ronald Briggs, PhD GISP, Program in Geospatial Information Sciences University of Texas at Dallas

On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of SCAUG, it’s perhaps useful to look forward as well as back. However, the past is our only model for the future, so this presentation speculates regarding the future of GIS from the perspective of a person who drew their first map with a computer almost 50 years ago (in 1967) using punched cards for input and a line printer as the plotter. Speculation as to what may be possible fifty years hence is not especially productive, perhaps even foolhardy, but what we might expect, given past trends and current practices, for the next several decades is useful, and indeed fun. So, with respect in particular to data and applications in a metropolitan area context, this presentation asks ”Whither GIS?”  

Automation, Notification and Jubilation: Incorporating Notifications 
into Geoprocessing Workflows

Daryl Scott, City of Dallas

Workflow automation is important to boost productivity, improve service, and promote data integrity.  Once an automation script is placed into production, the script is often ignored until staff or customers report symptoms caused by the script's failure.  In some cases, automation script failure may go undetected for extended periods of time resulting in stale data, service disruptions, and customer dissatisfaction.  These situations can be mitigated by conditionally sending a notification to staff based upon the script's exit code.  This presentation will highlight successful incorporation of notifications into geoprocessing workflows using email, Growl for Windows, and Pushbullet.

Bell County Communications Center, where is your emergency?
Azucena “Auzzie” Krobatsch, Bell County Communications Center

In Central Texas, a single Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP), uses GIS to locate over 500 9-1-1 calls a day. The first question that is asked is “where is your emergency”.  The callers answer, coupled with location data passed by the phone, is used to ensure that the caller receives the emergency response they need. The components that place the caller’s location, suggest the proper agency response, and determining the closest available unit are all components of GIS for 9-1-1. To do this the 9-1-1 GIS system requires GIS data that is so precise that it translates to less than half an inch on the ground. This is a full scope analysis of how GIS for 9-1-1, is a collaborative effort between callers, city GIS, responders, call takers and dispatchers.


Taking GIS to the Masses – How The City of Monroe Has Elevated Their GIS 

Kim Golden, City of Monroe, LA

The City of Monroe, Louisiana has been a long time user of GIS, however, from the initial conception of the program, it was more of a back-room mapping application that only few had true access to.  Through the years, staff changes and improvements in technology, the City of Monroe has modified its GIS program to allow GIS information, edits and processes to be a part of an employee’s work activities and continues to spread that thought process throughout the City.  Utilizing new technology, such as cloud hosting and replication, the City’s GIS program is now able to share information with other governmental entities in Ouachita Parish and in the near future will launch a web site for public viewing of information.  This presentation chronicles the journey and how the City of Monroe has elevated it’s GIS program to the masses.

Are You Smartly Working Hard, Or Hardly Working Smart?
John Hunt, City of Grapevine

The GIS environment is constantly changing and evolving, and many of us are unsure on dealing with the new challenges and available technology.  The NTGISCC is an organization formed to address these challenges and changes.  It is made up of over 30 GIS Professionals from the Dallas/Fort Worth Area, as well as representatives from TNRIS and Esri.  Through surveys taken from the GIS Community, the NTGISCC has narrowed down the top “pain points & key issues” for GIS Professionals.   NTGISCC sub-committees will be discussing these issues, and will create publications that will be available to all GIS professionals for free.  This presentation will discuss how we came up with these issues and pain points affecting all of us, and the path we’ll take to find the answers and solutions.

SCAUG is a not for profit organization dedicated to benefit users of ESRI’s geographic information software | Founded in 1990 | © SCAUG 2019 |

South Central Arc Users Group

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Ardmore, OK 73402

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