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NYS ITS GIS Program Office

Geographic Information Systems Clearinghouse

Standards and Data Coordination Work Group
Meeting Notes
October 21, 2008

Albany, NY: Cheryl Benjamin (NYS CSCIC), Didem Cakmak (NYS PSC), Barbara Cruden (NYS DEC), Ed Freeborn (NLECTC-NE), Mark Giddings (NYS DOH), Tom Henderson (NYS CSCIC), Jeff Herter (NYS DOS), Bill Johnson (NYS CSCIC), Gwen LaSelva (NYS DOH), Michael Martel (NYS DA&M), Todd Nelson (NYS DCJS), Rob Rizzo (NYS DOT), Bob Scardamalia (Empire State Development), Frank Winters (NYS CSCIC)
By Teleconference: John Barge (Adirondack Park Agency), Alan Leidner (Booz Allen Hamilton), Dan O’Brien (NYS SEMO)

Upcoming Meetings - January 6

News Items
May GIS Coordinating Body Meeting - Cheryl Benjamin highlighted the following items:

GIS Clearinghouse Activities - Cheryl Benjamin announced that the GIS newsletter is now available (electronic only) and a limited number of hard copies of the GIS Strategic Plan are available by request.

NYSDOP Update - Cheryl Benjamin, on behalf of Ray Faught (, provided the following update:

NYS Streets & Address Data Update - Cheryl Benjamin announced:

Update on FGDC Activities – Cheryl Benjamin noted the following:

On-Going Work Group Activities
GPS Data Collection Guidelines - Given the continual technology changes, the GPS Guidelines subcommittee will be reconvened sometime in the next several months to begin a review and update of the Guidelines.  Recommendations for new subcommittee members should be sent to Chery.

Spatial Data Reference Codes – The group reviewed the recent updates to the Spatial Data Reference Codes page ( A few additional changes were identified and tasked to Work Group members.

Special Discussion – Census LUCA Program
Bob Scardamalia stressed that having an accurate housing unit count is critical, especially with current Census projections showing NYS losing two Congressional seats after the 2010 Census. Bob provided an overview of how Empire State Development (ESD) participated in the Local Update of Census Addresses (LUCA) program.  This was the first time States were allowed to review and comment on the Census Bureau’s Master Address File.  This is the list of housing unit and group quarters addresses that the Census Bureau will use to deliver the 2010 Census questionnaires. ESD focused on counties outside of NYC, submitting almost 425,000 addresses to the US Census Bureau. Additional addresses submitted directly by local governments through LUCA: NYC 170,000; Counties 186,000; local governments 83,000.

Special Demo – Critical Infrastructure Response Information System (CIRIS)
This was a follow-up to the August 28 Work Group Meeting discussion regarding sharing of GIS data for activities related to homeland security, emergency response, and disaster preparedness. 

Tom Henderson demonstrated New York State’s model for data sharing, the Critical Infrastructure Response Information System (CIRIS), and its robust search engine that makes it easy to find the data needed for analysis. A key feature of CIRIS is that the input data generally only requires datum and projection transformations.  It does not require loading into a standard data model.

Alan Leidner, who has been involved in the Homeland Infrastructure Foundation Level Database (HIFLD) Working Group, spoke about the DHS Geospatial Data Model [GDM], the federal data sharing model. GDM is comprised of pre-defined features that have pre-defined content. This requires existing local government data to be extracted, transformed, and loaded into the GDM before it can be used. GDM tends to be useful if you are creating a new data set but it is much more cumbersome to use if you already have an existing data set.

Alan inquired about how NYS and the federal government could further discussions on geospatial data sharing.  Bill Johnson, chair of the NYS GIS Coordinating Body, recommended that Alan have the appropriate people involved in the federal Department of Homeland Security contact their counterparts in the NYS Office of Homeland Security to open the discussions.

Next Meeting:  January 6, 2009
Location:  CSCIC, 30 South Pearl Street, 11th Floor, Albany, NY