Congress is considering reauthorization of the National Geological & Geophysical Data Preservation Program, first passed in 2005. The program, based in the USGS, puts up small matching funds to help state geological surveys to catalog and digitize our vast archives. Since 2011, AZGS has successfully competed for funds to help digitize the files we acquired in the merger of the Arizona Dept. of Mines & Mineral Resources. These files are being placed online at minedata.azgs.az.gov for free downloading. We are working through hundreds of thousands of pages of files and reports, 10,000 maps, and thousands of historical photos, to get them scanned, catalogued, georeferenced and online.
Randy Showstack, reporter for AGU's Eos newspaper, covered the hearing in the House last month, and wrote a story describing the scope of the program nationally and some of its other impacts - http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2014EO390002/pdf
AZGS funding from the program has ranged from about $25 to $40 thousand per year, among the larger grants in the country. Over, Congress has appropriated about $8 million since 2007, with $4.6 million going to state surveys.
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