A Geographic Information System (GIS) is a computer-based system that uses location information, such as land features, parcel information, municipal addresses, postal codes, aerial photography to map information for better analysis.
Within municipal government, GIS refers to a collection of technologies including computer hardware, software, and data that are combined to capture, store, update, analyze, and display all forms of geographically referenced features. Examples of data collected are water lines, street sign and fire hydrant location. Layers of information and data collected can be added to maps to relate various elements while providing a systematic framework for managing location-based data. All the different layers can be placed on one area map which can then be utilized to sort or find necessary information as related to municipal requirements. With all data entered in database fashion, changes can be constantly made to keep information current and many types of analyses can be done on the collected information to solve specific municipal problems. Data can be accessed based on specific requirements of department.