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Front Page » November 9, 2006 » Local News » Special Service District Considers Purchase Of GPS Device...
Published 2,718 days ago

Special Service District Considers Purchase Of GPS Device for Fairgrounds, Golf Course


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By C.J. MCMANUS
Sun Advocate reporter

On Nov. 6, the Carbon County Transportation and Recreation Special Service District continued discussion concerning the purchase of an additional engineer grade global positioning system.

The GPS would be purchased for primary use at the county fairgrounds and Carbon golf course.

"There is a definite need for more GPS equipment," said Ben Clement, supervisor of the county global information systems (GIS).

While the request for the system was made by the fairgrounds, Clement was charged with obtaining the bid and explaining the county's plans for the GPS.

"The county does already have similar GPS equipment however, the county survey crews are using them a large portion of the time, especially in fair weather," continued Clement.

The engineer grade GPS that is being considered for purchase has a base price of approximately $18,000.

Clement pointed out that the need for this grade of equipment stems from the fact that it will give coordinates down to the centimeter in real time.

Service district member and Carbon Commissioner Bill Krompel indicated he would like to investigate how the county's current equipment is being used and shared.

"We need to see if we can be more effective and organized with equipment that we have," said Krompel.

Krompel inquired whether the county would need to train an additional employee to oversee and use the equipment.

Clement stated that someone from the GIS office would be trained to operate the equipment as well as to record and interpret the GPS data for the county fairgrounds and the golf course.

"It takes someone with good GPS knowledge to interpret and store this data but once recorded almost anyone could read the positioning display," said Clement.

"We want equipment of this caliber to be well cared for - we don't want it thrown in the back of someone's truck until it is needed," pointed out Krompel.

The service district agreed that the GPS device would pay for itself time and time again if used correctly.

But the board members had concerns about whether the county needed an additional device and how it would be used.

The fairgrounds is requesting the new system to more definitively map water and gas lines. The golf course wants the system for similar reasons.

The facilities could save water and employee time by obtaining more immediate knowledge of valve positions within the lines.

"This will take time however," said Clement. "We will take the opportunity to map out lines as they are dug up but until we get the device we can't really start a database," continued Clement. 'We can use it to keep information about county infrastructure that can be lost when people retire or move on. This system will not only be used to map the infrastructure but to provide essential information about what has been mapped. You would not only know where the line is, but what type of line it is and how it is valved."

In conclusion, the service district asked the fairgrounds and golf course to develop a definitive request that would outline three things: who would use the device, what the device would be used for and who would be responsible for caring for the device. The district will re-examine the purchase request at a future meeting.



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