NSPS Directors Report
National Society of Professional Surveyors
2023 Spring Meeting
March 29 – April 1, 2023
From March 29 through April 1, I attended the National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS) Spring Meeting and represented our Society at various NSPS Committee meetings. The conference was held at the Hilton Arlington in the Washington, DC area.
NSPS Day on the Hill (Lobby Day)
Wednesday March 29th was dedicated to visiting Capitol Hill and providing information about NSPS legislative priorities to our representatives. As part of this effort, I had meetings at the offices of Senator Elizabeth Warren, Senator Edward Markey and Representative James McGovern. NSPS was presenting three major topics to congress this year.
2023 Farm Bill – NSPS asks Members of Congress to co-sponsor legislation to introduce the Broadband Asset Surety Enhancement (BASE) Mapping Act to the 2023 Farm Bill.
FEMA, NFIP & Flood Insurance Mapping Reform – NSPS asks Members of Congress to sponsor legislation to make technical reforms to flood maps to increase accuracy and improve risk analysis.
Professional Licensure – NSPS is advocating for a “Sense of Congress” resolution to highlight the important role licensing of surveyors plays in protecting public health, safety and welfare.
Additional information about these three important initiatives is included at the end of this report.
NSPS Joint Government Affairs Committee
NSPS has once again been successful in making strides on a number of important issues in 2022, including…
Ligado Networks – NSPS has been tracking this potential for disruption to GPG signal for over a decade, dating back to LightSquared. At present, the Ligado system is approved, but not yet implemented. The FCC commission that oversees this issue now had four members, and the appointment of a fifth member (Gigi Sohn from Massachusetts) has been held up due to political pressures. NSPS will continue to work with others to monitor the issue and hopefully suspend the implementation of Ligado.
Council on Federal Procurement of Architectural and Engineering Services (COFPAES) – The restructured COFPAES is continuing to operate with NSPS, MAPPS and ASCE as members, working to procure legislation. COFPAES is promoting Davis-Bacon Act reform and QBS-related provisions in aviation, highway and other infrastructure-related bills in Congress. As always, they work closely with individual NSPS members to reverse procurement solicitations that fail to comply with the Brooks Act.
Davis-Bacon Act – The most recent rewrite of the Act attempts to add survey crews. NSPS is working hard to fight this and to keep survey crews on the exempt list, where they have been since the 1960’s.
Workforce Development – NSPS is working with Congress to introduce legislation to create a public- private partnership to help assure development of the future geospatial workforce America will need to contribute to economic growth, environmental protection, preservation of property rights, home ownership and rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure. On the NSPS website, sample letters are available that urge state and local agencies to place a focus and emphasis on the surveying and geospatial workforce. There are also links prepared by NSPS to identify local boards and agencies.
NSPS has recently been successfully working with Senator Inhofe (R-OK) on this issue and are searching for senator from the democratic side of the aisle to make this initiative bipartisan.
This is just a quick summary of the many issues being addressed by our NSPS Government Affairs Committee. I have included the committees full report as an attachment.
Colonial States Regional Council
The Colonial States Council is an informal caucus of NSPS comprised of Directors from select colonial states. It does not include all colonial states, as a few have elected to caucus with other councils. As an example, New York meets with the Great Lakes Council. The Council met on Thursday, March 30.
The meeting began with a review of both the Secretary’s Report and Treasurer’s Report. The council bank account has a current balance of $0.
Some highlights from these reports included…
Board of Directors Meeting
The meeting was called to order at 8:00 AM on Saturday April 1st. The meeting began with a roll call of Directors, introduction of guests, and a review of the day’s agenda. A total of 45 of the 58 members were in attendance.
NSPS Officers – President Bob Akins of Ohio presented a verbal report summarizing his travels so far as President. This was followed by a similar summary presented by new NSPS Vice-President Davey Edwards of Texas. NSPS Treasurer Bob Miller of Pennsylvania revised the 2023 profit/loss statements and reviewed the status of NSPS investments. Past President Amanda Allred of Washington presented a review of her work and travels in 2022.
NSPS Executive Director – Tim Burch discussed an overview of his most pressing tasks for the coming months, including:
The Board of Directors discussed and passed several motions. A summary:
Scouts Committee - NSPS passed a motion to incrementally increase the available funds in the foundation to support the BSA Scouting Jamboree every four (4) years.
Scouting Surveying Merit Badge – NSPS will award a $2,000 scholarship to be awarded annually to a person that earned the BSA Surveying Merit Badge. Passed unanimously.
Youth Outreach Committee Funding – A motion was passed to transfer $1,000 from the Youth Outreach budget to be used to support the upcoming BSA Jamboree.
CST Membership – Several housekeeping motions were passed to create a new NSPS Membership category for Certified Survey Technicians (CST). It was suggested that CST members be allowed to join NSPS at $10 per year if they continue to renew their CST status. There was concern about the wording of the category and if it would conflict with the current Associate Membership. It was decided to table the final motion and to have President Akins work with the Membership Committee to address any issues. A new motion will likely be presented at the 2023 Fall Meeting.
New ExCom Members – Directors Tim Murphy (Illinois) and Jeff Clendenning (Alabama) were elected to serve on the NSPS Executive Committee for a two-year term. Director Tim Brewer (Mississippi) was elected to serve a single year to replace outgoing Director Henry Kuehlem.
NSPS Certified Floodplain Surveyor Board – NSPS appointed seven (7) members to the CFS Board, as follows:
Three-year term – Bart Crattie (Georgia), James Craddock (North Carolina)
Two-year Term – John Chagnon (Maine), Cliff Baker (Alaska)
Alternates – James Hollandsworth (Michigan), Mark Condodemetraky (New Hampshire), Edward O’Brien (Rhode Island)
Policy on Graduate Education in Surveying – Motion passed that NSPS will strongly support and encourage both the creation of new, and the expansion of existing, masters and doctoral degree programs in surveying in the United States.
Matt Morris was voted as an NSPS Fellow, following a motion made by Richard Brooks (New York), the Admissions Committee Chair.
A plaque was presented to Tim Murphy (Illinois) in honor of being named the Key Director at the Fall 2022 meetings in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The Board of Directors Meeting was adjourned after the completion of new business. The next NSPS Meetings will be held in Cleveland, Ohio on September 20-22, 2023.
It was an honor representing Massachusetts and MALSCE in Washington. If you have any questions or comments regarding this report or any other national issues, please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NSPS Director (MA)
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