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United States Department of the Interior
Montana State Office
5001 Southgate Drive
Billings, Montana 59101-4669

 August 4, 2009

4010 (MT9230) P
Instruction Memorandum No. MT-2009-060
Expires: 9/30/2010
To:             State Management Team
                  Attention: Rangeland Management Specialists
From:         State Director
Subject:     Implementation of the Pasture and Grazing Allotment Boundary Data Standard
Program Area: Grazing Management
Purpose: The purpose of this Instruction Memorandum (IM) is to notify the field offices that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Montana/Dakotas will adopt and implement the livestock grazing pasture and allotment boundary spatial data standard. We will consider the published version of the national data standard “Grazing Boundaries Implementation Guidelines” (February 13, 2009) (Attachment 3) as the “best and final” standard and will migrate our existing pasture and grazing allotment boundary spatial data into compliance with the draft national standard. We recognize that the burden will remain with us to assure that our livestock grazing pasture and allotment boundary spatial data are modified as needed once the final national standard is issued.
Policy/Action: Each field office will prepare their existing pasture and grazing allotment boundary spatial data sets for loading into the Spatial Data Engine (SDE) database located in the State Office. Once the data is loaded into the SDE, the field offices will not maintain separate versions of the data set. All updating, editing, maintenance, and analysis of the pasture and grazing allotment boundaries will occur on the centralized data set in the SDE. Training in the use of the SDE will be provided to all data stewards and editors prior to the implementation of this policy.
The field offices will review the Table:  “Range and Allotment Management Data Stewards” (Attachment 4) to update the list of data stewards and data editors if required. This updated list shall be sent via email to Kevin Brooks, Data Administrator at Kevin_Brooks@blm.gov within 15 days of the issue date of this IM.
Within 15 days after the issue date of this IM, the State Office Data Steward and the Data Administrator will conduct a “kickoff” conference call/netmeeting with the field office Data Stewards. The data standardization process will be explained and the following schedule reviewed.
Within 30 days after the “kickoff” conference call, the field office Data Stewards will review the “Pasture and Grazing Allotment Boundary Data Standard Report” (Attachment 2) and determine what changes must be made to their spatial data in order to comply with the national data standard. Two conference call/netmeeting sessions will be scheduled during the “kickoff” call to facilitate this review. Also by this date, the geographic information system (GIS) staff in the State Office will ensure that the data structure in the SDE complies with the data standard. 
Within 60 daysafter the review period, each field office will ensure that their existing pasture and allotment spatial data has been “snapped” to the Geographic Coordinate Database (GCDB) data set, where pasture or allotment boundaries are coincident with the GCDB lines. Each office will submit the location of this data to the State Office GIS Coordinator, Branch of Information Resource Management (MT9320). This is the data set that will be loaded into the SDE.
Within 15 days after the field offices report the location of their data sets, the State Office GIS staff will complete the loading of the field office pasture and allotment data into the SDE and local copies of the data will be removed from service. The field offices shall review the SDE data set to ensure that their data was loaded correctly. The field office Data Stewards will report to the State Office GIS Coordinator any errors or discrepancies in their data after the load into the SDE.
Within 15 days after the field offices review the SDE data set, the State Office Data Steward will issue an IM stating that the BLM Montana/Dakotas will adopt and utilize the national data standard for pasture and grazing allotment boundaries. This IM will also direct the field offices to use the SDE data set for all editing, maintenance, analysis, and display of pasture and grazing allotment boundaries spatial data.  This data set will be stored and maintained in the central repository and will be our corporate data set. 
Current pasture and allotment data will be maintained as a historical record and as part of our existing land use decisions. The field offices are not to delete this data, but are to remove it from daily service after the successful load of their data into the SDE. This data may be useful for historical research or comparisons and shall not be modified.
Timeframe: Effective Immediately.
Budget Impact: There is no anticipated budget impact. There is a recognized workload for the GIS specialists, and the Range Data Stewards and data editors in each field office during the cleanup, aligning with the GCDB and migration phase and for the State Office GIS staff during the SDE loading.
Background: The implementation of data standards is a tactic the BLM is using to enhance data management across organizational boundaries. Well documented and easily accessible data sources save time when performing data research or analysis and during map preparation. Standardized data can be more accurate, and can be legally and scientifically defensible.  This may aid the agency by reducing litigations and appeals.  Data standards refer to the name, definition, presentation, and business rules governing data sets.  They are based on the known data requirements and are set by the stakeholders who need the data. 
Manual/Handbook Sections Affected: None.
Coordination: This IM was coordinated with the Branch of Planning and Biological Resourcesand the Branch of Information Resource Management. The field offices have previously had several opportunities to comment on the national data standard.
Contact: If you have any questions, please contact Floyd Thompson, Rangeland Management Specialist, at (406) 896-5025, Kevin Brooks, Data Administrator at (406) 896-5270 or Shelley Johnson, Acting State GIS Coordinator at (406)-896-5140.
Signed by:                                                                               Authenticated by:
Gene R. Terland                                                                      Melissa R. Dykes
State Director                                                                          Staff Assistant (MT9230)
4 Attachments
    4-Grazing Boundaries Progress Tracking Matrix (3 pp)

Last updated: 02-28-2013