(HARRISBURG) – Legislation authored by Senator John R. Gordner (R-27) to improve coordination of geospatial information systems (GIS) has passed the House of Representatives and will be presented to Governor Tom Corbett for his signature to become law. Senate Bill 771 creates a joint state advisory board to bring together state, local, private and academic interests currently working with GIS.
“Currently, GIS is used at and depends upon data from all levels of government, but is uncoordinated,” said Senator Gordner. “The ability to coordinate GIS will avoid duplication, result in more accurate and reliable data, and will ultimately reduce costs by reducing redundancies through improved efficiency.”
Senate Bill 771 creates a state advisory board to advise and recommend policies to encourage data sharing and collaboration. As an example, Senator Gordner said better coordination between state, county and federal GIS would be a valuable tool to assist the Commonwealth in working with the federal government on floodplain management issues.
“In our area, we’ve seen the fallout from federal efforts to revamp the National Flood Insurance Program, which has negatively affected a large number of property owners along the Susquehanna River,” said Senator Gordner. “There have been instances of technical errors in the floodplain maps, resulting in developed land unnecessarily designated in higher risk categories.”
The legislation received unanimous approval in both the Senate and the House.
Todd B. Roup