Spatial Technologies Industry Association (STIA) President Fred Corle submitted written testimony on behalf of STIA to the U.S. House Subcommittee on Technology, Information Policy, Intergovernmental Relations and the Census for a hearing that the subcommittee held on the Bush Administration's Geospatial One-Stop initiative and other major federal government geospatial programs and policies. The subcommittee is chaired by Congressman Adam Putnam (FL-12).
"I commend Chairman Putnam for demonstrating leadership in holding this hearing," Corle said. "I applaud his vision for having Congress address this highly complex, and often overlooked, issue that is of great consequence to our nation. The business case for geo-information government and the completion of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure has never been stronger or more urgent."
Corle urged Congress and federal agencies to take seven priority actions to advance the use of commercial geospatial products and services to spatially-enable all levels of government for homeland security, e-government, and other high priority national policy goals. STIA's recommendations for the federal government are:
- Action 1. Adopt market-driven standards for spatial data and geographic information system software interoperability in a timely manner.
- Action 2. Strengthen the management structure for geospatial programs by establishing a dedicated position in the White House Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Office of Electronic Government responsible for administering and coordinating national geospatial policies and programs consistent with Section 216 of the E-Government Act of 2002.
- Action 3. Establish a business plan that includes a new grant funding program, possibly modeled on many aspects of the Federal-aid Highway Program, to form consistent, standards-based, and equitable partnerships with state, regional, local, and tribal government as well as the private sector to build and maintain a market-driven and sustainable National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) with integrated applications and systems that accomplish high priority functions of government such as homeland security and e-government.
- Action 4. Develop a national strategy to achieve the level of geospatial preparedness required to address high priority homeland security threat scenarios identified by Congress and the White House as well as all major hazards determined by state, regional, local, and tribal government as well as the private sector that endanger lives, property, and critical infrastructure. Strongly support the work being done by the Interagency Geospatial Preparedness Team in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to formulate the National Strategy on Geospatial Preparedness.
- Action 5. Ensure that geospatial technologies and spatial data are well-defined and fully integrated in the OMB's Federal Enterprise Architecture.
- Action 6. Partner with industry and public sector organizations to raise awareness about "best practices," performance-based business cases, and positive return-on-investment case studies for the use of commercial geospatial technologies and spatial data.
- Action 7. More forcefully encourage federal agencies and federal grantees to make use of commercial geospatial products and services to the maximum extent feasible and appropriate.
Corle's full testimony can be viewed on STIA's web site at www.spatialtech.org.
"It is my hope that STIA's recommendations will benefit the federal government, our nation, and the integrated geospatial industry," Corle said.
Jack Dangermond, founder and president of ESRI, testified in person at the hearing along with six other witnesses from the public and private sectors. ESRI is a STIA member company and has a senior executive on the STIA board of directors. Preetha Pulusani, president of Intergraph Mapping and Geospatial Solutions, submitted written testimony to the subcommittee for the hearing. Intergraph is a STIA member and Pulusani is a member of the STIA board of directors.