Amy Schumaker on Mapping Morgan County with GIS

Morgan County has given a gift to its citizens.

And very few of its citizens know about it.

It’s called Morgan County Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

It’s a mapping system that identifies the owners of the 12,000 parcels in Morgan County.

From the comfort of your own home, you can type in the name of a property owner, or address, and up comes the property.

You can find out who your neighbors and where the property lines are.

Amy Schumaker is the Morgan County GIS director and county planner.

“A lot of people don’t know about it,” Schumaker told This Week in Morgan County with Russell Mokhiber. “That is unfortunate. It is such an amazing system. It is fun to be able to get in there. You can be at Google maps all day, but you don’t know who lives at the property. With GIS, you type in the name of the property owner, street address, or parcel number and up comes the map.”

The county uses GIS for property tax purposes and for first responders.

Schumaker says that right now, the county is verifying 911 addresses so that first responders can more easily identify where citizens live in case of emergency.

Almost every county in West Virginia has a GIS system in place.

Do county GIS directors get together and talk shop?

“Yes,” Schumaker says. “We get together once a year through the West Virginia Association of Geospatial Professionals.” And there is an email list where GIS directors can bounce ideas off one another.

What about if there is a sale of property – how often is Morgan County GIS updated?

“Once a year,” Schumaker said. “I have my own internal system that I can manually update. But for the public, it’s updated once a year.”

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