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Etowah & Atlanta Chapters Joint Meeting

Board and General Membership Meeting

7/19/2018 » 7/21/2018

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Annual Technical Seminar and Exhibit Show with SPECIAL SESSIONS Saturday, 1/20/2018: "Soil & Erosion Level 2 Recertification" and "Certified Survey Technician" (CST) Exam.

1/18/2018 to 1/19/2018
When: Thursday, January 18, 2018
8:00 AM
Where: Sonesta Gwinnett Place Atlanta
1775 Pleasant Hill Road
Duluth, Georgia  30096
United States
Contact: Ginger Jones

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A block of rooms have been reserved at $109+tax per night.  Reserve your room by phone at 1.800.766.3782 and use the Group Code SAMSOG.  You can also make a room reservation online by clicking here.

Make plans to attend and reserve your room TODAY!



Thursday, January 18, 2018

7:00 - 8:00 am         Check-in, Continental Breakfast and Sponsor Exhibits - Independence Ballroom                              

8:00 - 8:30 am         Welcome / Opening Remarks / Introduction of Booth Sponsors – Dan Collins, President - Georgia Ballroom

8:30 - 10:00 am       FAA Regulations for UAS Operations – Georgia Ballroom
                                  George Southard, G
SKS Associates LLC. - 1.5 PDH

9:00 – 10:00 am      Resource Training Athens Room –"UAV Uses for Surveyors" presented by Lonnie Sears, PLS, eGPS Solutions

10:00 – 10:30 am    Break and Sponsor Exhibits - Independence Ballroom

10:30 – noon           Becoming a Licensed UAS Operator - Georgia Ballroom
                            George Southard, 
GSKS Associates LLC - 1.5 PDH

10:30am - noon      Young Surveyors Meeting (35 years or younger) - Boardroom 1 - PDH 1

Noon – 1:30 pm      Annual Varsity Lunch sponsored by eGPS Solutions

1:30 – 3:00 pm        Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) as a Tool - Georgia Ballroom
                            George Southard,
GSKS Associates LLC - 1.5 PDH              

2:00 – 3:00 pm        Resource Training Athens Room –"Field to Finish in Trimble Business Center" presented by Mark White, PLS, Duncan-Parnell

3:00 – 3:30 pm        Break and Sponsor Exhibits - Independence Ballroom

3:30 – 5:00 pm       
Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) as a Tool; continued - Georgia Ballroom
                            George Southard, GS
KS Associates LLC. - 1.5 PDH                                                          

4:00 – 5:00 pm        Resource Training – "Field to Finish" presented by Scott Griffin, Carlson Software                            

5:00 – 6:30 pm        Dinner sponsored by Allen Precision/Leica Solutions Center - BAHAMA BREEZE, 3590 Brenckenridge Blvd, Duluth
                                   (directly across the street from the Sonesta)

6:30 – 8:30 pm        SAMSOG Board and General Membership Meeting - 2.0 PDH


Friday, January 19, 2018

7:00 - 8:00 am         Check-in, Continental Breakfast and Sponsor Exhibitors - Independence Ballroom

7:45 – 8:00 am        Welcome and Announcements - Dan Collins, President - Georgia Ballroom


8:00 – 9:30 am        Georgia Superior Court Clerks’ Cooperative Authority (GSCCCA) – eFiling - Georgia Ballroom

                    Rachel Rice, Project Manager - 1.5 PDH


8:00 – 9:00 am        Resource Training – "Don't Get Left Behind" presented by Terry Nutt, Leica Geosystems Solutions Center

9:00 – 10:00 am      Resource Training – "Field to Finish in Trimble Business Center" presented by Mark White, PLS, Duncan-Parnell           

9:30 – 10:00 am      Break and Sponsor Exhibits -  Independence Ballroom

10:00 – noon           Georgia Superior Court Clerks’ Cooperative Authority (GSCCCA) – eFiling - Georgia Ballroom

                    Rachel Rice, Project Manager - 2.0 PDH

11:00 – noon           Resource Training – "Private Utility Locating vs. SUE: What is the difference and what does your project need?" presented by Alex Whitten, Sursurface Utility Investigations, LLC

- 1:00 pm       Awards Luncheon: Plat & Mapping Contest Awards and SAMPAC Raffle - Independence Ballroom

1:00 – 3:00 pm        Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors - Georgia Ballroom
                                   Darren Mickler & Josh Waters - 2.0 PDH

3:00 - 3:30 pm         Break and Sponsor Exhibits CLOSE - Independence Ballroom                                                                            

3:30 – 5:00 pm      New Datum: Replacing NAVD 88 and NAD 83 - Georgia Ballroom
                           Lonnie Sears, PLS - 1.5 PDH                             


Saturday, January 20, 2018 – SPECIAL SESSIONS

Soil & Erosion Level 2 Re-certification

7:30 - 8:00 am         Check-in; Coffee provided. Pre-function area of space listed below

8:00 – noon             Soil & Erosion Level 2 Re-certification

                   C. B. (Butch) Watson, III, RLS/PE, Project Manager
                   Municipal and Environmental Department of Croy Engineering, LLC

               Salon 7-8 or Centennial Ballroom or Independence

This session is for current Soil & Erosion Level 2 certified individuals only.

Certified Survey Technician Exam

8:00 – noon            
Certified Survey Technician (CST) Exam
                                Exam Location: eGPS Solutions - 4317 Park Drive, Suite 200, Norcross (approximately 1 mile from Sonesta)
                                For more information and to register contact Stan Wilson at


Thursday, January 18, 2018

8:30am – 10:00am      FAA Regulations for UAS Operations, George Southard, GSKS Associates LLC

In August 2016 the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued a set of rules allowing commercial operations using Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) for the first time.  These rules are designed to allow for the safe integration of UAS into the National Airspace System.  Until the release of these new rules, using UAS for any type of commercial activity severely restricted to those who were able to get a special waiver from the FAA.  Now with the implementation of 14CFR Part 107 - FAA regulations are in place allowing professionals from Agriculture to Land Surveying and hundreds of other to use this exciting new tool in their work.  This session will provide detailed information helping the Surveying and Mapping professional safely and legally use their UAS as a survey tool.

George Southard professional career in the photogrammetry profession began in 1977.   He has served in numerous positions in the geospatial profession, including: Director of  Business Operations at Analytical Surveys, International Sales Manager at Leica Geosystems, Director of Programs for Trimble, Inc. In 2012 he founded GSKS Associates LLC a private consulting firm specializing in advocacy and education in the geospatial profession. Mr. Southard has a Master’s Degree in Geography with emphasis in cartography and photogrammetry from Brigham Young University.  

Contact Information: 1-720-273-9141 (Queen Creek, AZ).

10:30pm – noon               Becoming a Licensed UAS Operator, George Southard, GSKS Associates LLC

This presentation is detailed review of the steps needed to qualify for an FAA Remote Pilot Certificate (sometimes referred to a drone pilot’s license).  In the FAA regulations authorizing the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) for commercial (non-recreational) use, provision is made for the certification of UAS operators.  This certification includes studying for and passing a Knowledge Test for remote pilots, filing an application for the remote pilot certificate and getting security clearance through the TSA.  The objective of this course is to help potential remote pilots negotiate through the many documents, regulations and study materials provided by the FAA.

1:30pm – 5:00pm             Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) as a Tool for Land Surveyors, George Southard, GSKS Associates LLC

This session will introduce the implementation of UAS a tool for the Surveying and Mapping professional. As with all new and different technologies, at first there is a lot of excitement and hope, but early enthusiasm often quickly dampens as unforeseen and sometimes costly pitfalls crash the party.  In this session we will explore the business opportunities for using UAS as a tool for surveying and mapping.  But we will also look into the pitfalls and expose the wide-ranging costs of owning and operating UAS field survey activities. 

Successful use of this exciting new technology also demands the integration of new disciplines, procedures and processes not common in most land survey operations.  This session will introduce the concepts of photogrammetry, handing of massive amounts of digital data, logistics and planning associated with UAS operations.  

Friday, January 19, 2018


8:00am – noon                  Georgia Superior Court Clerks’ Cooperative Authority (GSCCCA) – eFiling - Georgia Ballroom

Rachel Rice, Project Manager

The presentation will be a comprehensive review of eFiling plats. We will review how to get started, requirements set in the Electronic Recording Rules for the State of Georgia, how to eFile plats, who is eligible and answer any questions surveyors may have as it relates to eFiling plats.

Rachel Rice currently serves as Project Manager for the Georgia Superior Court Clerks’ Cooperative Authority.  In her role, Rachel manages the staff of the Fines and Fees division, conducts audit reviews while fulfilling statutory mandates, and schedules and conducts training for various groups.  Also, Rachel serves as the business liaison for Authority eFile projects, assisting Superior Court Clerks’ offices and providing participating vendors with current Clerk Office participation information. A native of Charlotte, NC, Rachel moved to Atlanta in 2004 and began her career with the Clerks’ Authority in the Fines and Fees division.  With a background in teaching, Rachel then moved into the Training Coordinator position in 2005, serving in that capacity until taking on her current role of Project Manager.  Prior to joining the Georgia Superior Court Clerks’ Cooperative Authority, Rachel taught high school math and coached volleyball, basketball and softball for several years.  Rachel has a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics from Queens University and currently resides in Marietta, GA with her husband, Brandon, and son, Ethan.

1:00pm - 3:00 pm      Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors
                                   Darren Mickler, Executive Director
                                  Josh Waters, Legal Counsel and Operations & Compliance Manager

An overview of activities undertaken by the Board including the number of new licensees and barriers to entry into the profession, discuss changes to OCGA 15-6-67 known as the Georgia Plat and Condominium Plan Recording Act of 2017 and discuss the current Status of the Bibb/Monroe County line (to the extent an update is available).

Darren Mickler holds an A.A. from Middle Georgia College and a B.A. from Georgia College and State University.  He spent 12 years with zipper giant YKK(USA)INC as Process Manager for the Macon plant and 2 years with Morgan Stanley as an Investment Advisor before joining the Secretary of State’s Professional Licensing Board Division in July of 2002.   He and his wife and 2 children reside in Bonaire. 

Josh Waters serves as Legal Counsel and Operations and Compliance Manager for the Professional Licensing Boards Division of the Georgia Office of the Secretary of State (PLBD).  In addition to overseeing various projects, he manages the Legal Services Section of the PLBD.  Prior to this position, Mr. Waters served as the Assistant Director of the Elections Division and as an Executive Director with the PLBD.

Mr. Waters a holds a B.A. from the University of Georgia, a J.D. from the University of Mississippi and is a member of the Georgia Bar.  He and his wife reside in Perry, GA.


Friday, January 19, 2018; continued

3:30 pm - 5:00pm         New Datum: Replacing NAVD 88 and NAD 83
                                              Lonnie Sears, PLS
                                              eGPS Solutions, Inc.

A review of National Geodetic Survey (NGS) plans to replace the current datum and how it will affect land surveying and other geospatial applications in Georgia.

Lonnie Sears. PLS has over 27 years of Geodetic Surveying experience. Mr. Sears has performed GPS Control Surveys in several states and integrated DGPS, RTK and Static Survey methods into daily surveying tasks.  He is currently licensed in Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, Florida, Mississippi and Tennessee. Mr. Sears is a partner in and President of eGPS Solutions and is a partner in Champion Instruments who manufactures and integrates GNSS equipment for Land Surveyors. Mr. Sears is married with 3 children, 4 grandchildren, and lives in Dacula, Georgia. He is a graduate of West Virginia University Institute of Technology in 1984 with a degree in Civil/Survey Technology.


Saturday, January 20, 2018


8:00am – 3:00pm              Certified Survey Technician Exam
                                              eGPS Solutions – 4317 Park Drive, Suite 200, Norcross (approximately 1 mile from Sonesta)

                        For more information and to REGISTER contact Stan Wilson at


8:00am - noon      Soil & Erosion Level 2 Re-Certification
                                 C.B. (Butch) Watson, III, RLS/PE
                                 Exam Location: Sonesta Gwinnett Place Atlanta, 1775 Pleasant Hill Road, Duluth, Georgia 30096

Butch Watson, RLS/PE graduated with a Bachelor of Civil Engineering Technology in August 1975 from Southern Technical Institute, earned a Bachelor of Science in Industry from Georgia Southern College in June 1972, was registered as Georgia Land Surveyor in 1986, and as a Georgia Professional Engineer in 1987.  He is a project manager in the Municipal and Environmental Department of Croy Engineering, LLC (Croy).  Mr. Watson joined Croy as a Project Manager in the Engineering Department in May 2009, after a nine-year career with Gaskins Surveying & Engineering Company.  Mr. Watson and his department are responsible for environmental engineering (design and modeling for water, wastewater, and water-reuse), water resources (initial site evaluation, NPDES compliance, and erosion control training) and construction management/administration projects for private and municipal clients.  Through Mr. Watson’s efforts, Croy continues in the training program under the NPDES certification / re-certification program.


S&E Re-certification Requirements

According to State law, a certified individual shall be required to attend and participate in at least four hours of approved continuing education courses, as established by the Commission, every three years. (O.C.G.A. 12-7-19).


The Georgia Soil and Water Conservation Commission (GSWCC) in consultation with the Stakeholder Advisory Board have established the re-certification requirements.  Individuals will have the option of attending a GSWCC four hour course or third party approved courses totaling four hours of instruction.  There will not be an examination required for re-certification. (Reprinted from the Georgia Soil & Water Conservation web site

NOTICE:  Anyone that took the S&E LEVEL 2 re-certification course at the 2015 SAMSOG Technical Seminar has a certification expiration date of 2018.  This Level 2 re-certification course is being offered at the three (3) year interval for re-certification required as part of the design professional certification program.  Once a certified person retakes a re-certification course, the participant roster takes 3 to 4 days to be processed by GSWCC.  During this process, a certified person cannot, technically, certify ESPCP (Erosion, Sedimentation & Pollution Control Plan) sheets if your certification date on your card has lapsed.  If you do not want to wait for the SAMSOG re-certification or have to submit plans during the GSWCC re-certification process, you can attend another course.

COST:  SAMSOG Member - $100 and Non-member - $200 (includes notebook)

Printable AGENDA



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