SAINT LOUIS COUNTY PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT
LAND SURVEY DIVISION
COUNTY SURVEYOR'S OFFICE
2012 BUSINESS PLAN
James T. Foldesi, PE - Public Works Director/Highway Engineer
Thomas J. O'Malley, PLS - County Surveyor
Mission: To maintain the records and landmarks of the Public Land Survey System (PLSS) while providing Land Surveying services for county government in Road and Bridge Construction, Subdivision Plat Approval, Resource Management, and Geographic Information Systems.
- All Public Land Survey System corners (outside of large undevelopable areas such as the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness) will be monumented and certified with precise GPS coordinates.
- Survey control for road and bridge construction projects will be readily available for use in design and implementation, and will be replaced where disturbed by construction per MS 160 upon completion.
- Subdivision plat review as enabled by MS 389 and required by County Ordinances 34 and 60 will provide the necessary oversight to help protect public interest and welfare.
- Resource Managers will have the necessary location information to complete projects efficiently.
- The county's Geographic Information System parcel lines will be based on reliable survey control.
- Public and interested parties will have access to county-held survey records, including certificate of survey documents filed under the authority of County Ordinance 21.
Numerous vision-driven workflows are in place and producing positive outcomes, including providing survey control and other services for Public Works, providing timely feedback on subdivision plat review applications, providing users with reliable PLSS data where it is available, and managing survey records. Although we are making progress on county-wide PLSS remonumentation, our present pace puts completion on the distant horizon, and leads to a performance gap in areas where data is absent or unreliable. Resource managers, private sector partners, and GIS interests could greatly benefit from reliable county-wide PLSS data. The great need we see far outstrips our capacity, causing users to mitigate this information deficit with other, less desirable, less reliable substitutions such as calculated approximate corner positions.
To address these issues, management and administration should consider options including adding staff to the division, reallocating current resources, upgrading technology, streamlining workflows, and increased participation from our private and public sector partners.