GIS Program (Geographic Information System)

The GIS Program is part of the Realty Services Office and the Tribal Surveying Office. Like the Realty Services Office, the GIS Program is not defined in the Cherokee Code. It was created by administrative action of the executive branch and Tribal Council to perform functions required by the Tribe to research, identify, and map the Tribe’s system of possessory holdings. Some highlights from FY18:

  • Developed inventory of all Tribal land purchases (past and present).
  • Worked with the office of the North Carolina Secretary of State to complete the NC Seamless Parcels Project. Now EBCI can download parcels from any county in North Carolina. These will be helpful to THPO and Lands Acquisition.
  • Began field work on Fee-To-Trust Land Surveys that are required to be done to meet SLM standards. Herron surveys did not meet BLM standards.
  • New GIS Survey Crews completed several surveys.
  • Served on Department of Interior Committees: Cadastral Subcommittee of Land Rights and Interest as part of the Land Buy Back Program and Cobel Settlement; National Geospatial Advisory Committee (NGAC), addressing Indian rights and needs on Trust Land Records Management.
  • The GIS office worked with the Department of the Interior’s Office of Inspector General with its ongoing investigation into Cherokee BIA Realty and Fire.
  • Developed procedures for recording Tribal land records in the GIS. Produced maps and survey line comparison analyses for numerous land issues, including 25 Trust Boundary sites and many others.
  • GIS staff completed over 500 parcel ownership title searches, and identified over 50 conflicting land ownership and survey problems (examples: the person transferring land was not the true owner of land; two people possessed conflicting ownership documents of the same parcel; incorrect paperwork processed by BIA).
  • GIS staff served on and coordinated the Business and Lands Committee. Staff also converted and documented over 11,000 Tribal land records in the GIS system.
  • Completed and produced over 900 maps for various Tribal programs and Tribal members.