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NSPS announces results of 13th annual student competition
NSPS
Eight schools with baccalaureate degree programs in surveying, surveying engineering technology, and/or surveying engineering participated in the competition.

This year's competition was the completion of an ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey, and culminated in a "client briefing" style presentation at the conference. Click Here for press release.
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NSPS members urged to write Congress in support of 3DEP funding
NSPS
Members of NSPS are urged to send a letter to their Congressman and Senators in support for funding of the USGS program to develop national elevation data. The 3-DEP program will provide LIDAR coverage in the conterminous U.S. and Hawaii, as well as IFSAR data in Alaska. In an effort to educate Congress, a letter has been prepared for NSPS members and the geospatial community to send to your representatives in Washington, DC. We've provided a blog post, video, sample letter and a link to identify your Congressman and Senators.
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ALTA/ACSM standards
NSPS
Please send questions/comments you may have about the standards to NSPS Executive Director Curt Sumner via email at curtis.sumner@nsps.us.com. Responses will be posted in NSPS News and Views.

Question:

On a number of occasions lately I've been asked to provide proposals for ALTA/ACSM surveys on various projects, and even gotten back a few signed proposals which made me think it was ready to go. Then, when I asked for the title work so we could get going, I got an e-mail saying to hold off for a bit. On one specific occasion, they even said that they had decided they didn't need a survey, and that they'd convinced the title company to accept our old survey from about 10 years earlier. I suspect that they were providing an "Affidavit of Survey."

I would like the ALTA/ACSM Committee to please suggest to them that if the title people are going accept the Owner's Affidavit, then they better scratch off the ACSM part of the title.

They are providing millions of dollars of insurance which is encouraging banks, and others, to lend and borrow millions of dollars on what is essentially a fraudulently obtained assurance of the collateral on the loan. And, who is giving this assurance? Why it is the guy who walks out the door with the money. All of this is for the sake of saving a few grand, often on a loan of many millions. Sure, a few grand is nothing to sneeze at, but neither is the risk and responsibility of certifying the accuracy and security of that collateral.

Don't they have a fiduciary duty to the lender, the borrower and those providing the capital to make sure that the transaction is being made on the latest and best available information? We are often asked, at the last minute, to certify or explain various inconsequential minutia on surveys for state and federal agencies. There are implications that if we can't meet these requests, there will be dire consequences, and many will be left homeless and in the cold. Yet, on other transactions, the title companies are willing to sign off on a scan of an out-of-date survey that was certified to another entity, and is accompanied by a Google photo.

If ALTA is going to work with the Surveyors to come up with some sort of standard that allows them to know what they are asking for and us to meet their expectations, then they shouldn't turn it into a waste of time and effort by then accepting something that hasn't been independently verified.

Read More for Answer

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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  SPAR International 3D Measurement & Imaging Conference

SPAR International focuses on business and technology considerations for end-to-end 3D measurement for surveyors including tools to use for specific applications; balancing need for accuracy with cost; processing large data sets. PLS and PE CEU-approved.
 


Pressure building for FAA to approve small, commercial UAV operations
NSPS
Pressure is mounting for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to permit surveyors, mapping firms and other commercial enterprises to fly unmanned aerial vehicles. The FAA is scheduled to propose a formal rule for commercial systems by the end of the year, with final regulations in place at the end of 2015 at the earliest. But the demand is growing for a rule permitting businesses to operate small unmanned aerial systems, particularly in rural areas. The NSPS government affairs team has been involved in numerous meetings with FAA, Congress, and other trade and professional groups interested in UAV applications.
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Private flood insurance gains momentum
NSPS
Reps. Dennis Ross (R-FL) and Patrick Murphy (D-FL) have introduced H.R. 4558, the Flood Insurance Market Parity and Modernization Act, to liberalize rules governing which privately underwritten flood insurance policies may be used to satisfy federal lending requirements. Meanwhile, several states are beginning to facilitate flood insurance coverage options outside of the FEMA National Flood Insurance Program. The Florida state legislature has passed legislation creating a statutory framework for the state Office of Insurance Regulation to regulate flood insurance offerings by admitted market companies. Similar legislation was signed in March by West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, while the Connecticut House of Representatives also passed a similar bill last month.
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Defense bill in Congress takes a critical look at GPS technology
NSPS
A House subcommittee has included a provision in the 2015 Defense Authorization bill asking for a study of the Defense Department's efforts to deploy a highly secure, anti-jamming signal for Global Positioning System (GPS) satellites.
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USCG, NOAA, USACE seek input on navigation technology
NSPS
The US Coast Guard (USCG), National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) issued an announcement seeking public input on navigational aid technology and how it will affect the future of America's waterways. The outreach is part of a Future of Navigation initiative.
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Click Here for Map of Active CSTs by State


Survey Party at the Arch — May 31, 2014
NSPS
In honor of the 250th Birthday of the City of St. Louis, the St. Louis Chapter of the Missouri Society of Professional Surveyors is proud to host a Reenactment of the Founding of St. Louis. Click Here for more information and to make donations.
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NSPS Radio Hour — May 12, 11 a.m. EDT
NSPS
Lisa Isom (Manager of the NSPS Insurance Program) will join host Curt Sumner for the fifth in a continuing series of shows dedicated to insurance issues that affect surveyors. This show will include information about flood insurance, as well as other business lines.

If you are unable to listen to the show when it is being broadcasted, listen to the archive of the show at http://www.radiosandysprings.com/showpages/ACSM.php. Archives for each show are typically available for listening within a few days after the show airs.

During the show, listen for the "key question" and be the first to email the correct answer to quikstakescontest@americaswebradio.com to win a $50 gift certificate from our sponsor, Parker Davis Quik Stakes. No purchase is required to receive the gift certificate. Winners limited to once every three months.

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Employment opportunities
NSPS
Employment opportunities are posted on the NSPS website.

Employers interested in posting job opportunities on the NSPS website should contact John D. Hohol at jhohol@gmail.com.



Upcoming seminars/conferences
NSPS
Due to the volume of requests we received to publish information about State Society conferences, use this link to access the information from the NSPS website.



Pentagon seeks to partner for access to other GNSS signals
Inside GNSS
The U.S. military is moving toward using the signals of other satellite navigation constellations to help ensure access to positioning and timing information and to potentially thwart spoofing. The impending shift came to light in remarks made by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh III during a talk at the National Press Club.
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USGS has a new way of displaying geospatial datafeeds of their hydrography datase
USGS via GIS User
The USGS has released a web-based geospatial services known as the Hydrography Event Management Tools that allow users to create, edit and display geospatial markers, called Events, that are referenced to the National Hydrography Dataset. Events can be customized by the user to represent nearly any water-related feature.
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Space veteran Landsat 7 marks 15 years of observing Earth
Directions Magazine
Launched on April 15, 1999, the Landsat 7 satellite has now been observing Earth from outer space for 15 years. The Landsat program is a decades-long NASA and U.S. Geological Survey partnership that has provided a continuous, unbiased record of change across the earth land surface since 1972.
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Japan plans commercial centimeter accurate GNSS
Directions Magazine
Engineers at Tokyo-based Mitsubishi Electric Corp. report that they're on track to start up the first commercial, nationwide, centimeter-scale satellite positioning technology. Quazi-Zenith Satellite System, will work alongside the U.S. GPS system, meaning data in Japan will be at the centimeter level, not the meters or so gpS provides without correction.
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News & Views
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Dennis Hall, Senior Content Editor, 469.420.2656   
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