July 1, 2008 FGDC Coordination Group Meeting Minutes

Summary of Actions:

Action: Need FGDC Coordination Group approval of the approach being proposed in the Geospatial Lifecycle Stages Matrix, Version 1.0

Action:  The further refinement of the Geospatial Lifecycle Matrix will follow accordingly through the Coordination Group and the Steering Committee.

Action: In July, Wendy Blake-Coleman will send the Matrix out for further CG comment.

Action: FGDC will develop draft guidance for the FY08 financial data call to vet at the next NGAC meetings.

Decision: The Coordination Group approved the conceptual approach of the Geospatial Lifecycle Stages Matrix, Version 1.0.

Welcome and Introductions – Michael Thieme, FGDC

The meeting was chaired by Michael Thieme.  Michael is on a detail assignment to USGS in support of his participation in the  Department of Commerce SES candidate program. Michael welcomed the Coordination Group, provided an overview of the meeting, and took roll call.

Recap of the June National Geospatial Advisory Committee and Steering Committee meetings – John Mahoney, USGS


John gave a summary of the National Geospatial Advisory Committee (NGAC) meetings that were held on June 3 and 4. The meetings resulted in:

  • Adoption of the NGAC Mission Statement/Bylaws
  • Recommendation for continuing agency geospatial investment reporting through the annual reporting process
  • Endorsement of the concept of Imagery for the Nation and identification of additional issues to be resolved
  • Review and feedback on NGAC subcommittee products

The NGAC subgroups will continue their activities over the summer. The next NGAC meeting will be held on October, 15-16, 2008 in Shepherdstown, West Virginia at the National Conservation Training Center.

A summary of the June 5 FGDC Steering Committee meeting was provided.

Agenda topics included:

  • Update on the FGDC Executive Committee
  • Geo LoB update
  • National Land Parcel Data/FGDC Cadastral Subcommittee presentations
  • Report on the June NGAC meeting
  • Report on the National Ocean and Coastal Mapping Inventory

FGDC Chair Jim Cason requested that SAOGIs study the National Land Parcel Data report and be prepared to discuss in more detail at the October Steering Committee meeting.

The next Steering Committee meeting will be on October 17, venue TBD.

Imagery for the Nation (IFTN) Update/Discussion- Vicki Lukas, USGS


Vicki Lukas gave an update on the progress and milestones of Imagery for the Nation:

  • April 11 – First FGDC Executive Committee Meeting
  • May 1 – FGDC Steering Committee agrees to pursue IFTN at the Executive level
  • May 30 – Executive Committee endorses project management approach and Executive Champions are finalized
  • NGAC endorses IFTN, with comments
  • June 23 – First meeting of the IFTN Executive Champions group

Current IFTN activities include:

  • Coordination with NDOP and Geo LoB begun
  • Project charter draft in review
  • Activity briefing papers presented to champions
  • Work Group chairs being defined
  • Work Groups getting started
  • NGAC issues to be addressed by Work Groups and by the Executive Committee
  • Develop high-level Gantt chart
  • Executive Committee to meet on July 22

Q. IFTN has traditionally been comprised of orthophotography and remote sensing. Is the current plan going to include remote sensing?

A. We have not ruled out any type of photograph or imagery from the program.

Q. Are the IFTN activity briefing papers available?

A. We will look at a way to have them available.

Overview of the 2008 Geospatial Enterprise License Agreement Analysis Report and Expansion Strategy– Matt Leopard, EPA

The Geo LoB Common Services Work Group started this process in January by holding a work shop to review options for Enterprise License Agreements (ELAs) and to explore the need for a software repository that could be used across the federal government. Sixteen agencies were interviewed about current use of geospatial software and expenditures and this information was used to formulate a requirements document.  The requirements document, along with additional market research, gave the group a general sense of what was needed for procurement. GSA was recruited to coordinate the overall procurement processes.

 The four types of products are:

  • General GIS software
  • Tools that support visualization
  • Imagery analysis software
  • Geocoding and road networking software

A draft RFP is expected to be complete by July and the full RFP will be in place by August or September. The procurements are expected to be in place by December. The tool repository is wiki-based and it is proposed that the first version will be available in the Fall.

Matt urged the Coordination Group to spread the word so that the maximum number of agencies will be able to take advantage of the SmartBuy procurement process. The language contains a clause stating that recent procurements may migrate into the SmartBuy process at a later date if the SmartBuy proves to be a better deal.

Comment: The road networking product may duplicate with Tiger data.

A. Some agencies have needs that extend beyond Tiger’s capabilities; SmartBuy does not force agencies to purchase any products.

Geo LoB – Lifecycle Management Work Group – Wendy Blake-Coleman, EPA


Wendy Blake-Coleman, the Lifecycle Management Work Group lead, gave an overview of the activities of the work group and subgroups. The purpose of the briefing was to:

  • Present an overview of the Geo LoB Lifecycle Management work group goals and products
  • Provide a summary of activities within each Lifecycle Management subgroup
  • Obtain approval of approach outlined in the Geospatial Data Lifecycle Stage Matrix
  • Discuss FGDC Coordination Group involvement and next steps

The Lifecycle Management work group has 30 members from multiple federal and independent agencies. The perspectives are from both geospatial data- producing and data- using agencies.

Activities of this work group are:

  • Evaluating “as- is” state of OMB Circular A-16 and the impact on theme/dataset portfolio management.
  • Drafting an improvement strategy for A-16 portfolio management which includes supplemental OMB Circular A-16 guidance
  • Goal is to provide FGDC Coordination Group with a suite of processes to:
  • track and evaluate progress for completing the NSDI
  • make recommendations to the FGDC Steering Committee on:
  • Setting priorities for cross government partnerships
  • Amending the management or composition of themes/data under A-16
  • Encouraging data development efficiencies

Dennis Crow, USDA

Dennis Crowe, OMB Circular A-16 Definitions subgroup lead, gave an overview of the Geospatial Lexicon. The Lexicon focuses on creating common operational definitions to enable more effective communication with non-geospatial business stakeholders. An FGDC Theme Liaison Coordinator is proposed. An example of roles and responsibilities for a proposed Coordinator is included in the presentation.

Dave LaBranche, DoD

Dave LaBranche, Theme Content subgroup co-lead, discussed the subgroup’s proposals for a process to recommend amendments to Circular A-16.

An important driver of this proposal is the need to reconcile data themes associated with infrastructure sectors named in the Homeland Security Presidential Directive 7 (HSPD 7) and the National Infrastructure Protection Plan (NIPP) with Circular A-16, Appendix E. Currently, A-16 does not address many of the infrastructure sectors associated with HSPD 7.

There are six proposed theme assessment principles and criteria used to add, delete, or consolidate themes and datasets. The proposed assessment principles are summarized below:

  • Principle 1: Does the theme serve the needs of citizens?
  • Principle 2: Is the theme derived from specified requirements as articulated in Federal Enterprise Architecture (FEA) Business reference models? Does the theme support core missions of federal agencies and their partners?
  • Principle 3: Is the theme supporting specifically defined requirements or legislative mandates for geospatial information, including HSPD 7?
  • Principle 4: Does the theme compliment other themes, without duplication, and does it enable a unified national enterprise?
  • Principle 5: Does the theme support the cohesive joint development, maintenance and resolution of multiple datasets across federal, state, local and tribal governments?
  • Principle 6: Does the theme focus on the spatial representation of physical assets or boundaries that are important to the nation? (See presentation for additional information.)

Jeff Booth, DoE and Tom Chatfield, BLM

Jeff Booth and Tom Chatfield, co-leads for the Lifecycle subgroup, discussed incorporating lifecycle management stages into portfolio management.

: Need FGDC Coordination Group approval of the approach being proposed in the Geospatial Lifecycle Stages Matrix, Version 1.0

Action:  The further refinement of the Geospatial Lifecycle Matrix will follow accordingly through the Coordination Group and the Steering Committee.

Action: In July, Wendy Blake-Coleman will send the Matrix out for further CG comment.

Over the next year, the Lifecycle workgroup will:

  • Develop a definitive group of best management practices (BMP)
  • Identify key characteristics of the selected BMPs that can be used to create a simple maturity model for each lifecycle stage
  • Obtain Coordination Group approval of the maturity models for each stage
  • Collect information from agencies on how their datasets score according to the maturity model for each stage
  • Adapt at least one BMP for use by data production managers across multiple OMB Circular A-16 themes to reduce development and management time and costs

Decision: The Coordination Group approved the conceptual approach of the Geospatial Lifecycle Stages Matrix, Version 1.0.

FY08 FGDC Annual Report – Michael Thieme, USGS

Michael Thieme provided a brief overview of plans for developing guidance for the FY 2008 FGDC Annual Report.  Michael notes that during the June 3-4 National Geospatial Advisory Committee (NGAC) meeting, the NGAC expressed concern about the completeness and accuracy of agency reporting in response to previous budget data calls.  The NGAC encouraged FGDC to continue to track agency geospatial expenditures and to pursue strategies to ensure more complete and accurate reporting.  The FGDC has established a small team to evaluate the annual data call and survey, and to develop draft guidance for the FY 08 Annual Report.

Action: FGDC will develop draft guidance for the FY 08 Annual Report, and will provide for review and comment at upcoming Coordination Group meetings.

Comment: It is very difficult for agencies to report on financial expenditures, and it is not clear how the data are being used. We need to define how best to capture expenditures and this cannot be done until we have common definitions and coding systems..