County introduces GIS websitePublished 8:37pm Monday, January 16, 2012
ST. JOSEPH — The Berrien County Geographic Information System (GIS) Department invites the public to attend a “Get to Know Berrien’s GIS Website” event in Berrien County’s Administration Building’s Board of Commissioners room 2:30 and 6 p.m. Monday. Seating is limited.
Berrien County’s GIS website is an interactive public access tool that allows users view county information, public records and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) via a centralized search portal.
Following a review process and recommendation, Berrien County selected The Schneider Corporation’s Beacon product for its its user-friendly design, performance and overall functionality. Schneider is a leader in providing GIS solutions to hundreds of municipal, county, state, federal and private entities.
The search portal features a public site that includes taxation and property information, in-depth search capabilities and property reports. The portal also provides users the ability to view an interactive map of the county’s GIS data and aerial photography, as well as convenient tools to collect parcel information.
“We’ve had an online GIS mapping system for years but, after listening to what our consumers wanted, we went out and found a product that fit our customer’s needs,” said Lex Winans, the director for the county’s GIS.
“It was the simplicity and ease of use which initially caught my attention,” Winans said.
Berrien County’s GIS and Land Description department is made of five employees whose primary responsibility it is to maintain county properties and spatial data as well as assist with customer service.
Customers are still welcome to come into the GIS & Land Description office to obtain a hard copy map, e.g., (8.5-by-11 inches) for $20.
The cost of using the GIS website is $15 per day or $50 per month plus a processing fee compared to the previous website price of $10 per hour plus a processing fee.