Well, it's here. POB is proud to bring you, our favored cyberspace visitors, the first POB Road Show. We're excited to be able to virtually take an industry event straight to your desktop. But, there's much more to this first event--the excitement of the show itself. "Practical Applications in the Geospatial Information Sciences" here in Providence, R.I. has many of its own firsts, combined with a plethora of notable speakers and presentations. This is the first time five New England states have joined their annual meetings. Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island also join with the biannual conference of ASPRS and ACSM--a first for these two organizations in many years. There's a lot to tell you about, and to show you, so check back daily for coverage!
Learning LegaleseIt was hard to select a particular workshop to attend, but for personal curiosity and professional learning opportunities, I sat in on "Advanced Land Surveying Boundary Research."
Rich Vannozzi, PLS, of A.R. Vannozzi and Associates in Plymouth, Mass., began the three-speaker course with an advanced overview of research. He discussed why it is important to do thorough research, when you've done enough research, the responsibilities of the surveyor to an abutter and how to limit liability. An important reason for doing thorough research, Vanozzi noted, is that an "after the fact" discovery can make it harder to be perceived as credible after a decision has been finalized.
In response to the question, "When have you done enough research?," Alice Brown of Salem State College in Salem, Mass., the course's second speaker, quipped, "When you run out of money." This, however, is oftentimes true; research can be expensive. But, the time you spend on thorough research will pay off.
Vanozzi's advice on limiting liability is, of course, to do thorough research, but also to be forthright with abutters and to document every action taken. Get things in writing, he advised, and document even verbal communications.
Brown delved into the process of probate research, covering the process of how to and why to find docket files, wills, deeds, rules of descent, petition to partition, and dowery and curtsey. She then provided a case study.
Paul Turbide, PE, PLS, of Port Engineering Associates in Newburgport, Mass., provided another case study, walking the audience through each step of a proper and efficient research process.
Vanozzi supplied attendees with research tips, including the importance of organization and getting to know the people who can help you at your local municipal offices, probate and deeds offices.
The near-full attendance at the workshop proved the importance of the subject to surveyors. And the thoroughness of the presentation by Vanozzi, Brown and Turbide, I hope, quelled some of the burning questions of research.
Lieca N. Brown
Surveying HistoryThe first of three Technical Sessions was rich in historical perspective, which was particularly appropriate in the New England setting in which this conference was held.
Vernon Dingman, III, LS, presented a description of the survey of the Connecticut River to determine the state boundary between Vermont and New Hampshire. John J. Doody of the Connecticut Department of Transportation spoke on the near-miraculous retrieval of the "forgotten" land record of the defunct New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad. Patrick Toscano, LS, also from Connecticut, took his listeners all the way back to surveying in colonial times, presenting evidence of surveying education and examinations in pre-Revolutionary times. A more recent but equally interesting look at large-scale boundary conflict resolution was the topic presented by Steven Frank of New Mexico. He took us through an analysis of the determination of the eastern boundary of the Sandia Pueblo.
Stay tuned for more of the latest news from New England!
Floor hosts over 60 exhibitorsBy afternoon, 683 people were registered for the conference minus exhibitors. And though it's a small showfloor, reputable names fill it. Berntsen, Leica, Sokkia, Spectra Precision and TDS all had booths. Each of the five state societies displayed booths, also. And ACSM and ASPRS offer a variety of books and wearables at their well-stocked stores.
Check back for more conference news!