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«PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE Aloha HLSA members, friends and colleagues! Your HLSA Board of Directors has all been quite busy on many different fronts ...»

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Volume 29, Issue 2


Aloha HLSA members, friends and colleagues!

Your HLSA Board of Directors has all been quite busy on many different fronts making this

association better for everyone. For me it has already been an exciting year as President, and a very

humbling one also. This is really my first opportunity leading other professionals within the industry,

and to be quite frank, they are honest, caring and giving individuals. What a wonderful team!

• Christina Seto, Vice-President, has been keeping me in check, which is no small task at times.

Seriously, she has been our eyes and ears, keeping us abreast with industry changes like High Resolution Data available to the public from NOAA. This topobathymetric LIDAR data was collected along our Hawaii coastlines. She also is now with PAREN and Wayne Teruya, LPLS, one of my past mentors. Congratulations Christina!

• Alika Garo, Secretary, a man behind the scenes, has been managing the website, which I must say, is improving all the time. He also has setup new email accounts for all board members.

Sometimes the people behind the scenes don’t get enough credit. He also has created an evaluation system in tallying the feedback from our annual conference, which by the way, was a huge success. Thank you all Speakers! Vendors! Sponsors! Members! Thank you thank you!

• Kenn Nishihira, PLS and Treasurer has, besides participating and growing with Toastmasters International, been updating our membership database, which is constantly growing. Keeping up with emails, addresses and the like is no small task. And then there’s your money in the form of dues, of course.

• Russell Higa, LPLS, 2nd Director, has been busy gathering his thoughts on a workshop/s on Maui for this summer, and potentially next years’ conference! Whoa, what a thought? This really struck a chord when we mentioned it to the mainland surveyors. A joint HLSA/WFPS conference in Hawaii?? It may come true.

• John Akina, LPLS, 1st Director and I, attended the Nevada Association of Land Surveyors/ Western Federation of Professional Surveyors (NALS/WFPS) Western Regional Conference at the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada this past month. It was the perfect opportunity for us to “mentor up” with the likes of Carl CdeBaca, PLS and NALS 2016 President; Gary Kent, PLS and Chair of the ALTA/NSPS Standards among other notable accolades; Jeff Lucas, PLS, Esq., a licensed attorney and member of the Alabama State Bar since 2003 and author of “Alabama Boundary Law”, Jan VanSickle, PLS, a nationwide speaker on surveying and GIS, experienced in LIDAR, and a contributor to POB Magazine, and more.

Please read John Akina’s write-up for more of the conference. I am so grateful to have received a complimentary registration from them. Mahalo Nui!!

• Joanne Williamson, LPLS, attended the NSPS National Spring Meetings. She is on fire!! Read her write-up and be inspired! It is well-written as the professional Joanne is, with details on her time in Washington, D.C. From visiting with our local Senator’s staff, to being a Committee Chair on UAS/UAV Technologies. I’d say that NSPS committee is well-handled with Joanne at the forefront. Go Joanne!

–  –  –

I was honored to represent HLSA at the National Society of Professional Surveyors Annual Spring Conference this past month. Through the years, many local names familiar to us Hawaii surveyors, Pat and Mary Cummins, Andy Harada, Kendall Hee, Stephen Okuhara, Dennis Yamasato, Layton Nakao, Kevin Kea, amongst others, and most recently Arden Torcuato and Clayton Kaneshiro have gone to Washington DC to represent Hawaii at the NSPS meeting. NSPS Governor’s, as they were called, as well as HLSA presidents, have attended this annual event. The event was a grand display of the collective professionalism, strong sense of ethical principles, and a profound commitment to the surveying community that is the National Society of Professional Surveyors.

This year’s conference was held in conjunction with MAPPS as a way for two different societies, representing the various geomatics disciplines around the country, to connect over common issues.

The conference spanned five (5) days. For myself, as a first timer, it took about that long to get the Iay of the land. One of the notable first day events for me was a chance to see the student map exhibitions and meet the exhibitors. The maps ranged from topo maps to quite involved civil plans and complex subdivisions. The exhibitors were students from surveying and geomatics programs from around the country. http://c.ymcdn.com/sites/www.nsps.us.com/resource/resmgr/Student_ Comp/NSPS_Student_Competition_201.pdf There was also a presentation on an innovative UAS program by Dr. Balaji Ramachandran of Nicholls State University in Louisiana on the Gulf coast using UAS in the aftermath of a disaster for photogrammetric mapping.

On Day two (2) NSPS sponsored a mock trial educational workshop. That was a real eye-opener. The trial concerned a disputed parcel between two rural neighbors and managed to examine principles of both boundary law and survey ethics.

The script was written by Gary Kent, and opposing attorneys were Jeff Lucas and Jim Deema. All of the volunteers, including the plaintiff, defendant and the two surveyors were slowly, and painfully, roasted during testimony. Lesson learned: when a surveyor is called to court, either as a defendant or as an expert witness, that surveyor must be very fluent in both the laws governing our practice as well as the principles and methodology of survey. Conversely, if you are not prepared, be afraid, be very afraid. Fortunately my day in court has not yet come.

The business meeting kicked off for NSPS Wednesday with ‘Lobby Day’ and I spent it on Capitol Hill. I was completely awed by being in the offices of the Senators and Representatives our state. Visits had been prescheduled with our elected officials to ask for support and to raise awareness of issues related to survey and mapping. Fortunately for me, as the lone delegate from our state, Hawaii only has two Representatives along with our two Senators. I chose to present the issue of Geospatial Workforce Development to all of them, which is easily presented as both a local and national issue.

We had been told that it is not at all a slight to have our meetings scheduled with the aide of a Representative or Senator.

I didn’t really believe it, until I met the very bright (and young) aides that work for Congressman Takai, (Kana Smith) Senator Schatz (Serena Li) and Senator Hirono (Dr. Jen Burks.) (Congresswoman Gabbard was unavailable) These aides are the folks that put together the actual bills presented to Congress. When I arrived they had all done their homework on the subject of the Geospatial Workforce, and they actually coached me through the ‘ask’ for sponsorship of legislation. I know I did not wow them with my articulate presentation, but I was so impressed by theirs. Senator Hirono joined me and her aide in discussing the need for promoting the surveying profession and for educational resources for surveyors in the State of Hawaii. She was supportive of introducing and co-sponsoring legislation for Geospatial Workforce Development, and indeed had co-sponsored the bill for the Digital Coast initiative last year.

The next two days were the real ‘meat’ of the NSPS meeting. This is when the NSPS state directors met together to vote on the various issues that had been discussed in earlier committees. This was also incredibly impressive, not only because I can’t remember seeing that many suits and ties anywhere in Hawaii, but because of the enthusiasm, articulateness and professionalism the directors brought to their issues. It was an incredibly dedicated group of surveyors that I met and hope to work with in the upcoming years. An overview of the meetings and votes follows in the accompanying report.

Page 2


March 13-17, 2016 Submitted by Joanne Williamson. LPLS* The meeting started off with a heartfelt speech by new NSPS President, Tony Cavell, of Louisiana, that emphasized the goal of increasing participation and contribution, and learning how to engage and encourage folks in a respectful and grateful manner. (See the link below for an article that was the basis of his speech)

• NSPS needs a champion(s) for the ALTA Certification Program to take the reins and move the program forward. Mr. Gary Kent is supportive of the idea, but looking for other leadership to make it happen. Please let me know if you are interested in participating or leading.

• NSPS is continuing to pursue having a joint meeting with FIG. (International Federation of Surveyors) in

2022. Sites for consideration may include Orlando, New Orleans and Washington D.C.

This is a list of new initiatives and observations from the NSPS Annual Spring Meeting*

• First and foremost, a warm welcome was extended to fellow surveyors in West Virginia who recently voted themselves into the 100% membership program. John Green (a past WVSPS President) sat in for Jared Wilson who will serve as their first NSPS Director.

• The Young Surveyors Network was front and center, well represented by Amanda Askren, LPS who is also a member of the board of the Land Surveyors Association of Washington. YS is signing a MOU with NSPS and they will have a non-voting seat on the NSPS BoD. Currently 40 states take part in the Young Surveyors Network, which is also affiliated with the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG). They are an inspiring group of individuals to have involved in the workings of NSPS, and hopefully we can make a chapter in Hawaii as well.

• 9 teams competed in the student competition. Congratulations to the winners: The University of Akron (4 year) and Dunwoody College of Technology (2 year)

• Geodetic Certification committee is pressing forward. There has been an online poll requesting input from our fellow surveyors across the country. Dave Doyle offered that they want to make a concerted effort to obtain professional input and support versus relying on recommendations from an academic panel.

• NGS 2022 Datum – Model Law. NSPS continues to work with NGS on templates we can provide the states to use in crafting legislation to recognize the new datum. Hawaii is the most affected by this new Datum which will result in up to 8 ft. horizontal and 2.5 ft. vertical shift.

• NSPS is working on a white paper to share with our state associations to support professional licensing. We are aware of a tangible force within federal and local governments that seeks to eliminate licensing, referring to it as an impediment to work force development and our economy.

• NSPS will develop “Best Practices Guidelines” which our membership can follow to help ensure Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Compliance.

• The UAS Committee has been moved from an ad hoc committee to a permanent committee, and will be investigating the role of survey in UAS technology and mapping.

–  –  –

• NSPS will craft a letter to the National Association of Realtors requesting that specific language be inserted in their Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice to the effect that they will not engage in activities that constitute unauthorized practice of land surveying – such as suggesting to their clients where their boundaries are, or what constitutes a legal property corner monument.

• The NSPS Public Relations Committee presented two awards. The first went to The Texas Society of Professional Surveyors for a flyer and website they put together for educating youth about land surveying – see link below The second was a humanitarian award given to the Illinois Professional Land Surveyors Association for a joint effort between the Northeast Chapter of IPLSA and The Northern Illinois University’s Geomatics program to survey an area wiped out by a tornado, replacing monumentation and documenting existing infrastructure – see link below Past President John Warren addresses the General Membership Meeting.

Sitting left to right Bob Miller – Treasurer, Tony Cavell - President, Jan Fokens,-President Elect. Newly elected Vice-President for 2016 Kim Leavitt missing from the photo, sworn in by the end of the meeting.

Page 4 Curt Sumner leads the Installation of Officers, Standing Left to Right: Jon Warren-Immediate Past President, Kim Leavitt-Vice President, Jan Fokens-President Elect, Tony Cavell-President; Sitting far left Bob Miller-Treasurer

A heartfelt speech by newly installed President, Tony Cavell, quoted from this article in the Tech Insider publication:


–  –  –

http://www.nsps.us.com/resource/resmgr/Public_Relations/PR_Competition_-_NEC_Fairdal.pdf Page 5 Page 6 The Professional and Vocational Licensing Division (PVL) is a statewide agency of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA). It assists the 49 professional boards, commissions, and programs that are administratively attached to the DCCA, and oversees the licensing and renewal of over 150,000 businesses and individuals licensed in the State. Its sister agency, the Regulated Industries Complaints Office (RICO), serves as the enforcement arm for the professions and vocations, investigating and prosecuting allegations of professional misconduct by licensees and possible unlicensed activity that may be occurring in the State.

Both PVL and RICO are funded by fees that support licensing and enforcement services. Those fees include (1) initial and renewal licensing fees (the PVL revenue source), and (2) compliance resolution fund fees (the RICO revenue source). Despite steady increases in operating costs, fees first established around 1982 have remained static. Both PVL and RICO have resisted the need to increase licensing fees.

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