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* News Release *
 
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
For Immediate Release

COUNTY ENGINEER APPOINTS NEW TAX MAP MANAGER
Staff News

Butler County Engineer Greg Wilkens announces the promotion of GIS Specialist Lydia Thacker, P.S., to the position of Tax Map / GIS Manager. Thacker will oversee day to day operations of the BCEO Tax Map Department while continuing to maintain the Engineer's GIS program.

Ms. Thacker replaces longtime Tax Map Manager Bert Brown who has retired after 17 and a half years in the position. The main duties of the Tax Map Department are to maintain survey maps and information as they relate to parcels, addressing, and center line mileage. As GIS Specialist, Ms. Thacker developed the BCEO GIS data base and now sees the two roles naturally coming together: "The updated GIS technology allows us to maintain Tax Map information more efficiently. We hope to create a more accessible process for the public as well as our own employees who need to utilize this information." GIS is an acronym for Geographical Information System and has become an increasingly important tool in the field of engineering.

Ms. Thacker has been with the BCEO for five years and came from the City of Fairfield where she worked as GIS Analyst. Her background also includes working as a Survey Technician for Hazlet & Erdal and the City of Cincinnati. She is also employed as a part-time instructor at Cincinnati State Technical College.

A registered Professional Surveyor (P.S.) in the State of Ohio, Ms. Thacker holds a Bachelor's Degree in Construction Management and Surveying from Northern Kentucky University and earned her Associates Degree from Cincinnati State in Civil Engineering Technology in 1980.

More About GIS

Geographical Information System (GIS) is a computer system for creating "intelligent maps." What this means is that real life features such as roads, survey monuments, traffic signals, utilities, and storm sewers, or, real life events -- traffic crashes, traffic counts, water testing -- are located and a map of these features is created. The features and events are represented by lines, points, or areas on the map and located where they actually are or have occurred on the earth. The location of these features can be obtained by a surveyor using survey equipment, digitizing from an aerial photograph, or using handheld GPS (Global Positioning System) location devices.

After the location is established any information or data about that feature or event can be connected to it by using a database and creating an "intelligent map." Using an interactive map, the computer operator can click on a feature or event represented by a line, point, or area and a data sheet appears with information about that feature or event.

GIS and the BCEO Tax Map Department

The new GIS technology is being integrated with more traditional forms of map record keeping that will allow the Engineer's Office to provide the information in a variety of digital formats. While tax maps have historically been kept in the form of large, cumbersome paperbound books, the goal is to offer more flexibility with a wide range of electronic formats with which to deliver the same information based on specific needs. Thacker said she also plans to offer tax map info via a web-based format in the near future.

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For more information contact:

Chris Petrocy, BCEO Public Information Supervisor
Greg Wilkens, P.E., P.S., Butler County Engineer
Phone 513.867.5744 • Fax 513.867.5849


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