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MassGIS standard for digital parcels and related data sets

This standard for spatial accuracy and detail of assessor parcel mapping and related attribute information is for developing digital versions of assessor’s property maps for use in planning, property assessment, and map display.

Version 2.1, Released May 2012

Overview

This standard:

  1. Provides communities a flexible specification for developing a digital parcel file suitable for use in a geographic information system (GIS). Because text labeling and the creation of a master address file are integral to extending the usefulness of a digital parcel file, portions of this standard address the creation of those datasets.
  2. Makes it possible to merge digital property information from more than one community for multi-town mapping and spatial analysis.
  3. Makes it possible to identify a single property parcel statewide based on a single unique identifier.
  4. Provides various levels of documentation.
  5. Assures a minimum level of spatial accuracy.

This minor upgrade to the standard reflects experience gained in fiscal years 2011 and 2012 as standardized digital parcel mapping was developed for most communities in the Commonwealth. Most of the changes in version 2.1 were implemented as changes to the contract specification for the six original mapping vendors working on the statewide parcel mapping project, so this version serves to formally document changes that have already been put into practice. The two exceptions to this are the additions of the TAXPAR_ID field in the OthLeg feature class and the CAMA_ID field to the assessing extract, which have been discussed with mapping vendors, CAMA vendors, assessors and other stakeholders but not yet implemented.

Please note that this standard is NOT a general purpose standard for traditional printed parcel map sheets. This standard for spatial accuracy and detail of property boundaries and related attribute information is for developing digital versions of assessor’s property maps for use in planning, property assessment, and graphic map display.  However, there is no intent to provide a standard for developing the authoritative definition of property boundaries or to specify limits for legal boundary determination or property conveyance purposes. Matters related to those more definitive interests remain the purview of the professional title attorney and/or professional land surveyor.

Document

MassGIS Parcel Data Quality Assurance - If you receive a data file from a contractor or develop one in-house and you want to have the file checked for conformance with Level III of the MassGIS standard, contact send email to Neil MacGaffey at MassGIS at neil.macgaffey@state.ma.us.  MassGIS provides this service at no charge to Massachusetts cities and towns.

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