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the key to life
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Vol. 75, No. 2

The APWA Reporter, the official magazine of

the American Public Works Association, covers
all facets of public works for APWA members
including industry news, legislative actions,
management issues and emerging technologies.


4 President’s Message
10 Call for nominations to APWA Board issued
12 Positive people and positive responses: the heart and soul of any team
17 Technical Committee News
18 Leading by example: the importance of diversity
20 APWA Book Review

18 C O L U M N S

6 Washington Insight
22 Recipes for Success
26 International Idea Exchange
62 Ask Ann


30 Balancing CSO affordability while maintaining existing water and sewer

37 From rooftops to rivers: green infrastructure yields economic and
environmental benefits
42 Water, water everywhere, and not a drop to waste…
46 Bringing water to the people and people to the water in Singapore
50 Implementation of a Membrane Biological Reactor at Schofield Barracks
52 Planning for future water needs of small rural communities in the west
54 Drought of 2007: Drastic times cause for drastic measures
56 Water security update
57 Regional Public Works Emergency Management Cooperative: a case report

35 W O R K Z O N E

64 WorkZone: Your Connection to Public Works Careers


66 Professional Directory
68 Products in the News

21 Education Calendar
68 World of Public Works Calendar
61 Index of Advertisers
Cover photo: The Columbia Heights Membrane Filtration Plant received APWA’s Project of the Year Award in 2007

in the Environment $10-$100 Million category. Pictured are (from left) Shahin Rezania, Ph.D., P.E., Director of Water February 2008 APWA Reporter 3
Treatment and Distribution Services, City of Minneapolis, Minn., and Chad Hill, P.E., Project Director, Black & Veatch
Corporation (photo courtesy of Black & Veatch Corporation).
Water: Our greatest challenge
and passion
Larry W. Frevert, P.E.
APWA President

ater is the key to life. potential benefits are negligible, it is

Fully two-thirds of the probably not a good investment of
earth is covered with public dollars. Too many projects in
water but only 1% of it the past have taken on lives of their Official Magazine of the
is fresh. Because 40% of the world’s own without defining the Environ- American Public Works Association
population is affected by water scar- mental Yield. These oversights can PUBLISHER
American Public Works Association
city today and it is estimated that lead to water shortages, pollution 2345 Grand Blvd., Suite #700
within 30 years the majority of the cleanup, failing systems and other Kansas City, MO 64108-2625
(800) 848-APWA (Member Services Hotline)
earth’s population will not have environmental and health hazards. (816) 472-6100 (Kansas City metro area)
enough water to drink, I believe FAX (816) 472-1610
Much of what public agencies can e-mail:
that providing safe drinking water Website:
do depends on funding, and an
and properly caring for our waste- EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
eye on long-term costs and benefits
water and stormwater are the great- Peter B. King
is essential. Balance is needed be-
est challenges we as public works EDITOR
tween the level of spending and the R. Kevin Clark
professionals face.
environmental benefit that will be GRAPHIC DESIGNER
Protecting and managing our water achieved. Projects with little or no Julie Smith

resources has become increasingly Environmental Yield cannot be un- ADVERTISING SALES
Amanda Daniel R. Kevin Clark
complex in recent decades. Chang- dertaken at the expense of all other Erin Ladd Kansas City Liaison
ing weather patterns, changing necessary sewer, wastewater and Jennifer Wirz (800) 848-APWA
(800) 800-0341
regulations and laws, aging infra- water infrastructure improvements.
structure, rising costs, and rate in- A community cannot continue to 1401 K. Street NW, 11th floor
creases affect all of us. How we, as spend money beyond the point of Washington, D.C. 20005
(202) 408-9541 FAX (202) 408-9542
public works professionals, manage diminishing returns, simply to meet
Disclaimer: The American Public Works Association
through this maze of complexities, absolute regulatory compliance. assumes no responsibility for statements and/or
maintain our perspective and focus There should be a viable, continuous opinions advanced by either editorial or advertising
contributors to this issue. APWA reserves the right
on our goals, is critical to complet- reevaluation of where to best spend to refuse to publish and to edit manuscripts
ing our missions. We need to work the limited resources to realize the to conform to the APWA Reporter standards.
together to address the future chal- best environmental benefit for our Publisher’s Notice: The APWA Reporter, February
2008, Vol. 75, No. 2 (ISSN 0092-4873; Publications
lenges by providing leadership in citizens. By continuously asking the Agreement No. 40040340). The APWA Reporter is
the protection and use of our most Environmental Yield question, the published monthly by the American Public Works
Association, 2345 Grand Boulevard, Suite 700,
precious resource. prudent investment of public funds Kansas City, MO 64108-2625. Subscription rate is
and improvements to environmen- $155 for nonmembers and $25 for chapter-spon-
A significant issue in managing wa- sored students. Periodicals postage paid at Kansas
tal protection will be optimized and City, MO and additional mailing offices. POSTMAS-
ter and all natural resources is Envi-
the benefits tremendous. Some of TER: Send address changes to the APWA Reporter,
ronmental Yield. The question that 2345 Grand Boulevard, #700, Kansas City, MO
the rules require substantial sums 64108-2625. Canada returns to: Station A, P.O. Box
should be asked continuously by
of money to enact and in the end, 54, Windsor, ON N9A 6J5.
both the public works official and
provide marginal benefit. In addi- Reprints and Permissions: Information is available at
environmental regulator is, “If this
tion, utilities are spending money
project is developed and construct- © 2008 by American Public Works Association
to comply with rules that are in
ed, and the program is implement- Address Change?
conflict with other rules.
ed, what will be the meaningful To alert us of a change to your membership record,
contact an APWA Membership Specialist at (800)
benefits to the environment?” If the In the future, utilities must con- 848-APWA or
question cannot be answered with a duct intelligent ongoing discussions The APWA Reporter is printed by Harmony Printing
positive environmental result or the with regulators to define where lim- & Development Co., Liberty, MO.

4 APWA Reporter February 2008

ited resources can best be used for the perature of ocean water a few degrees and stormwater issues. I fully expect
public benefit. Projects and programs will have a devastating and fatal effect that recommendations from this sym-
should follow a prioritization process on some forms of sea animal and plant posium will come forward that will
that includes a cost/benefit analysis, life. Further, rising ocean temperatures help direct APWA’s future legislative
takes into account the overall needs of and melting of the polar ice caps will priorities and our position and policy
the community and calculates the En- cause the ocean water level to rise, in- statements recommended to our mem-
vironmental Yield of the project. Pub- undating more land and turning ex- ber agencies. To learn more about this
lic funds must be used for meaningful isting freshwater supplies brackish or symposium, see the ad on page 45 of
purposes and have measurable public worse. When our earth’s population, this issue or go online to: http://www.
benefits consistent with the amount of now exceeding 6.5 billion people and
funds expended. expected to reach 9.1 billion by the
Navigating the world of water resourc-
year 2050, is coupled with diminished
Both public works officials and environ- es management means addressing
freshwater supplies and land area, we
mental regulators have a tremendous funding, regulation and environmen-
are on a collision course with disaster. I
stake in improving the environment tal issues in such a way that this one
believe it is incumbent on us, the pub-
and water quality for the next gen- precious resource is available to every
lic works community—the people who
eration. The challenge is to meet these community and every citizen now and
best understand these types of crises
goals because there is competition with in the years to come. Can you imag-
and best equipped to address them—to
other state and national programs for ine a greater impact on human life by
act now to help prepare for the future.
the same dollars. A new paradigm is re- public works? It’s no wonder that water
quired for the public works and regula- APWA will host its first-ever “Climate is becoming our greatest challenge and
tory communities to work together as a Change Symposium” April 9-10, in passion.
team which will provide a strong foun- Tempe, AZ. I look forward to that event
Thank you for all you do for APWA
dation for water quality improvements as an opportunity to learn more about
and for your service daily to the public
across the nation that noticeably pro- this “collision course” and what we
works profession.
gresses in the coming decades. must do to prevent it. Please consider
joining us or sending key members
Much has been said and written in
of your staff as we brainstorm needed
recent years about “Climate Change”
solutions across the environmental
and its impact on the environment. I
gamut, including water, wastewater
understand that just raising the tem-


Mission Statement: The American Public Works Association serves its members by
promoting professional excellence and public awareness through education, advocacy
and the exchange of knowledge.
Larry W. Frevert, P.E. Shelby P. LaSalle, Jr. ENGINEERING &
National Program Director/ Chairman and CEO TECHNOLOGY William A. Verkest, Chair
Public Works Krebs, LaSalle, LeMieux Patty Hilderbrand, P.E.
HDR Engineering, Inc. Consultants, Inc. Program Management & Robert Albee Erwin F. Hensch Michael R. Pender
Kansas City, MO Metairie, LA Development Manager
City of Kansas City, MO Roger K. Brown Robert S. Hopson Richard L. Ridings
Noel C. Thompson Larry T. Koehle, P.Eng. DIRECTOR-AT-LARGE, Myron D. Calkins Ronald W. Jensen John J. Roark
Consultant President ENVIRONMENTAL
Thompson Resources L&N Consulting MANAGEMENT Joseph F. Casazza Dwayne Kalynchuk Harold E. Smith
Louisville, KY Brampton, ON George Crombie
Secretary of Natural Resources Nick W. Diakiw Martin J. Manning June Rosentreter Spence
William A. Verkest, P.E. Larry Stevens, P.E. Waterbury, VT Robert C. Esterbrooks James L. Martin Tom Trice
Texas Municipal Program SUDAS Director
Manager Iowa State University DIRECTOR-AT-LARGE, Jerry M. Fay James J. McDonough Win Westfall
HDR Engineering, Inc. Ames, IA FLEET & FACILITIES
Arlington, TX MANAGEMENT Bob Freudenthal Robert Miller Carl D. Wills
DIRECTOR, REGION I R. LeRoy Givens, P.E. Director, General Services Dept. Herbert A. Goetsch Lambert C. Mims
Jean-Guy Courtemanche Vice President & Senior City of Fresno, CA
Business Development Project Manager J. Geoffrey Greenough Judith M. Mueller
Lumec, Inc. Bohannan Huston, Inc. DIRECTOR-AT-LARGE,
Boisbriand, QC Corrales, NM PUBLIC WORKS Ken Haag Ronald L. Norris
DIRECTOR, REGION II DIRECTOR, REGION VIII Diane Linderman, P.E. Executive Director
Ed Gottko, P.E. Ann Burnett-Troisi Director, Urban Infrastructure
Town Administrator (retired) Governmental Liaison for Peter B. King
and Development
Town of Westfield, NJ Pacific Bell (retired) VHB, Inc. Executive Director Emeritus
San Diego, CA Richmond, VA
Vice President Doug Drever TRANSPORTATION Editorial Advisory Board
AMEC Earth & Environmental Manager of Strategic Services John Okamoto
Greensboro, NC City of Saskatoon, SK Myron D. Calkins Neil S. Grigg Stephen J. O Neill
Chief Administrative Officer
Port of Seattle Gordon R. Garner Susan M. Hann Kyle E. Schilling
Seattle, WA

February 2008 APWA Reporter 5

Clean Water Act: Progress has been made,
but more work to be done
Julia Anastasio, Esq.
Senior Manager of Government Affairs
American Public Works Association
Washington, D.C.

007 marked the 35th anniversary of the Clean Water If you are interested in more information on any of these top-
Act (CWA). Since 1972, tremendous progress has been ics, please contact Julia Anastasio at
made, and today, our rivers, lakes and streams are far
cleaner than they were three decades ago. The act has
Legislative Highlights
leveraged billions of dollars for state and local governments H.R. 720: Water Quality Financing Act of 2007
to improve water quality and address water infrastructure The Water Quality Financing Act of 2007 authorizes $14 bil-
needs and the CWA has been one of our most successful lion over four years to the clean water state revolving fund
environmental statutes to date. But there is still more work and reauthorizes the federal commitment to clean water
to be done. Forty percent of the nation’s tested waters cur- infrastructure and begins to address the estimated $350 to
rently fail to meet quality standards. Congress and the fed- $500 billion funding gap between current expenditures and
eral agencies responsible for water resources have spent the identified needs. The legislation also includes a provision
past year working on solving these remaining problems and requiring the Government Accountability Office to under-
the APWA Water Resources Management Committee has take a study of potential funding mechanisms to support
been actively engaged in ensuring that the interests of pub- such a trust fund. H.R. 720 was passed by the U.S. House
lic works professionals are considered and addressed. of Representatives in March on a 303-108 vote. The Senate
Environment & Public Works Committee held a hearing to
address the need for more federal clean water funding. Sena-
tors at the hearing promised swift action on the SRF autho-
Distinctive Strengths. rization bill. Senate action is expected early in 2008. APWA
United Goals. submitted letters of support on each of these bills and has
continued to work with the Water Infrastructure Network in
advocating for a sustainable long-term funding solution to
the current water and wastewater infrastructure crisis.

H.R. 700, S. 836: Water Quality Investment Act of

The Water Quality Investment Act of 2007 will provide $1.8
billion in grants to local communities for sewer overflow
control projects. The House passed its version of this bill in
March 2007.

H. Res. 725: Recognizing the 35th Anniversary of

the Clean Water Act
This bipartisan resolution calls for a “sustainable long-term
solution to address the Nation’s decaying water infrastruc-
ture.” The resolution acknowledges the multi-billion-dollar
water infrastructure funding gap and supports the creation
of a federal clean water trust fund.

H.R. 1747: Safe Drinking Water for Healthy Com-

munities Act of 2007
Engineering, Planning, Code Enforcement, Landscape Architecture, Building and This piece of legislation would require EPA to propose a stan-
Safety, Construction Management, Financial and Economic Consulting, Geotechnical dard for perchlorate within 18 months of enactment and fi-
Engineering, Material Testing and Inspection, Homeland Security and Public Safety. nalized within 30 months. The House Energy & Commerce
Willdan Administrative Office: 800/424-9144 Committee passed this bill but movement to the floor for a
MuniFinancial: 800/755-MUNI (6864)
Arroyo Geotechnical: 714/634-3318 vote by the full House is not expected in the near future.
American Homeland Solutions: 877/818-5621

6 APWA Reporter February 2008

H.R. 2452, S. 2080: Raw Sewage Overflow Right to Bill in July and the Senate finally reached agreement on the
Know Act of 2007 bill early in December 2007. The two bills will need to be
The Raw Sewage Overflow Right to Know Act of 2007 would re- reconciled in conference before the legislation is sent to the
quire wastewater utilities to develop monitoring systems to President for his signature. The President has threatened to
detect any overflows and also require utilities to report over- veto the bill. Action on the conference report is unlikely until
flows to the public within 24 hours. Additionally, the bills February or March 2008. APWA members were actively en-
contain reporting requirements for overflows to local pub- gaged in advocating for passage of robust Conservation and
lic health authorities, state regulators, and the EPA. APWA Rural Development Titles. The next battle on this front will
submitted comments on the legislation that recognized the be working to ensure that congressional appropriators pro-
importance of public notification but there is a concern that vide enough funding for these vital programs.
the bills as currently drafted do not adequately take into ac-
H.R. 2421, S. 1870: Clean Water Restoration Act of 2007
count existing reporting requirements and technological
The Clean Water Restoration Act of 2007 seeks to clarify that
certain isolated non-navigable waters should fall under the
H.R. 1495, S. 1248: Water Resources Development CWA jurisdiction and ensure broad protection for isolated,
Act of 2007 non-navigable waters by removing all references in the
The Water Resources Development Act of 2007 authorizes CWA to “navigable waters” and replacing them with the
more than $23 billion for U.S. Army Corps of Engineers term “waters of the United States.” The bills were followed
to complete more than 900 projects related to flood con- closely by the release of a joint EPA USACE guidance direct-
trol, navigation, water supply, environmental restoration ing field staff on the process for making jurisdictional deter-
and infrastructure projects. WRDA also includes more than minations. Initial reaction to the guidance has been mixed
100 projects totaling $794 million earmarked for wastewa- and there is some anecdotal evidence that confusion over
ter and drinking water projects and significant funding for implementing the guidance is resulting in permitting delays
projects related to hurricane damage along the Gulf Coast. of approximately three months or more. APWA has been ac-
The Act also includes new independent review requirements tively engaged in working with congressional staff to craft
for projects more than $45 million and outlines the process a workable solution to the confusion created by last year’s
for deauthorizing unbuilt projects which are obsolete or no Rapanos Supreme Court decision that muddied section 404
longer necessary. President Bush vetoed WRDA because he jurisdictional determinations.
claimed that the legislation contained unnecessary projects
S. 1429: Small System Safe Drinking Water Act of 2007
and was unnecessarily expensive. The Senate overrode the
This legislation would prevent EPA from levying fines on
President’s veto by a vote of 74 to 14 and two days later the
communities with sub-par drinking water systems if the
House did the same in a 361-54 vote. Legislative leaders in
federal government has not provided them with sufficient
both houses of Congress have pledged to take up WRDA in
funding to make upgrades. Under the bill, enforcement of
2008 in an effort to get the reauthorization process back on
certain national drinking water regulations would be pro-
a two-year reauthorization schedule. APWA members were
hibited if eligible municipalities have not received enough
actively engaged in advocating for WRDA by sending letters
funds to pay the federal share of upgrades. The legislation
and making phone calls to their congressional representa-
applies to water systems serving fewer than 10,000 individu-
tives discussing the importance of this piece of legislation.
als. The bill recommends allocating $15 million per year for
H.R. 2419, S. 2302: Farm Bill Extension Act of 2007 each of the fiscal years from 2008 to 2012. The bill mandates
The Farm Bill Extension Act of 2007 reauthorizes a five-year that EPA ensure that small public water systems not cost us-
$280 billion farm bill that would increase conservation ers more per-capita basis than large water systems. It also
funding and addresses the water and wastewater rural utili- requires that EPA to the maximum extent practicable ensure
ties program project backlog. The Conservation Title reau- that small public system workers receive the technical assis-
thorizes several important conservation programs including tance and training needed to comply with national public
EQIP, Conservation Stewardship Program, and Wetland Re- drinking water standards. Finally, the bill would establish a
serve Programs. The title also includes a new program, the panel of experts to review the health effects of arsenic and
Regional Water Enhancement Program (RWEP), which lays disinfection byproducts and to report these findings to the
out a framework for funding conservation projects involv- Senate EPW Committee and the House Energy and Com-
ing multiple stakeholders including water utilities. Eligible merce Committee 180 days after the bill is enacted.
projects under the RWEP will include water quality, quantity
or conservation programs; groundwater recharge; stormwater
Regulatory Highlights
capture; and other water quality-related activities. The Rural Preliminary Effluent Guidelines Plan
Development Title provides significant funding for rural wa- The Preliminary Effluent Guidelines Plan provides informa-
ter and wastewater projects, programs for community facility tion and seeks comments on EPA’s 2007 annual reviews of
development, and regional economic development initia- effluent limitation guidelines and pretreatment standards
tives, among others. The House passed its version of the Farm for both existing and non-regulated categories, as well as

February 2008 APWA Reporter 7

its preliminary plan for 2008. The Preliminary Plan contains Water Related Climate Change Effects
updates on the current detailed studies of four existing cat- The EPA National Center for Environmental Assessment
egories: Steam Electric Power Generating; Coal Mining; Oil (NCEA) releases three draft reports that examine the effects
and Gas Extraction; and Hospitals. The Hospitals category of climate change on watersheds and aquatic ecosystems.
is included in a broader, more detailed study on the Health Climate & Land-Use Change Effects on Ecological Resources
Services Industry, which is a proposed new category that in Three Watersheds: A Synthesis Report provides watershed
also includes dental clinics, long-term care facilities, veteri- planners and managers with improved capabilities to con-
nary clinics, and medical laboratories and diagnostic cen- sider climate and land-use change and provides summaries
ters. This category change could bring about 475,000 new and comparisons from case studies of various watersheds.
dischargers into the pre-treatment program. Climate Change Effects on Stream and Biological Indicators: A
Preliminary Analysis describes how biological indicators of
Green Infrastructure ecosystem health may respond to climate change and con-
EPA issued a memorandum to clarify how green infrastruc- cludes that data from current sampling methods may be used
ture can be incorporated into existing regulatory programs to detect climate change impacts. Effects of Climate Change
in an effort to improve water quality. The Water Permits on Aquatic Invasive Species and Implications for Management
Division and the Water Enforcement Division of the Office examines state-level invasive species management plans
of Enforcement and Compliance Assistance (OECA) issued and their capability to incorporate changing environmental
the memo to regional EPA Water Division Directors and conditions, particularly climate change, and concludes that
Enforcement Coordinators, as well as all state NPDES pro- more research and data collection are needed for optimal in-
gram directors. The memo states that “in developing permit vasive species management considering climate change. The
requirements, permitting authorities may structure their three reports are available at
permits, as well as guidance or criteria for stormwater plans
and CSO long-term control plans, to encourage permittees Underground Carbon Dioxide Storage
to utilize green infrastructure approaches, where appropri- EPA announced its intention to develop regulations for un-
ate, in lieu of or in addition to more traditional controls.” derground injection of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide
For enforcement activities, EPA will consider the feasibility into deep rock formations for long-term storage. The regula-
of using green infrastructure as a pollution control option tions will aim to ensure that there is a consistent and effec-
and encourages states to do this as well. APWA joined with a tive permit system under the Safe Drinking Water Act for
group of stakeholders including the National Association of commercial scale geologic sequestration programs to help
Clean Water Agencies, the Low Impact Development Center reduce the effects of climate change. EPA plans to propose
and the Natural Resources Defense Council in supporting regulatory changes to its underground injection control pro-
this initiative. gram in the summer of 2008.

Watershed Permitting Guidance Effective Utility Management Collaboration

EPA published a new technical guidance on integrating Last year APWA joined with the Association of Metropolitan
NPDES permits into watershed management plans. The Water Agencies, American Water Works Association, Nation-
Watershed-Based NPDES Permitting Technical Guidance is a al Association of Clean Water Agencies, National Association
follow-up to the 2003 watershed permitting implementation of Water Companies, the Water Environment Federation
guidance and it leads interested parties through an analysis and EPA in a historic agreement to promote effective utility
of watershed data and the development of a framework for management across the water sector. Based on recommen-
implementing the NPDES program. The guidance also in- dations from a group of utility leaders, the Collaborating
cludes case studies describing how watershed approaches Organizations identified ten Attributes and several Keys to
involving NPDES permitting have been implemented across Management Success that provide a succinct indication of
the country. where effectively managed utilities should focus and what
they should strive to achieve. The Partners recommended
Water Sector Specific Plan that the water utility sector adopt and utilize these Attri-
EPA and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued butes as a basis for promoting improved management within
the final Critical Infrastructure and Key Resources Sector the sector. The Attributes can be viewed as a set of building
Specific Plan for the Water Sector as an input to the Nation- blocks for management improvement opportunities. The
al Infrastructure Protection Plan. The Water Sector Specific Attributes and Keys to Management Success provide the sec-
Plan outlines security and emergency response objectives for tor with a common framework to manage and sustain water
water and wastewater utilities and identifies four water sec- infrastructure and ensure sustainable utility operations. As
tor security goals: (1) sustain protection of the public health 2008 proceeds the Collaboration intends to provide several
and the environment; (2) recognize and reduce risks in the key products, including an implementation guide, an online
water sector; (3) maintain a resilient infrastructure; and (4) resources toolbox tied to the Attributes, and sample utility
increase communication, outreach and public confidence. A performance measures linked to the Attributes to help utili-
copy of the plan can be found at (search ties gauge their progress and manage more effectively under
for Water Sector Plan). this framework.

8 APWA Reporter February 2008

August 17–20, 2008 l New Orleans, LA | New Orleans Convention Center

Call for nominations to APWA Board issued

PWA’s National and Regional Nominating Com- Regional director seats

mittees are currently issuing a call for nominations There are also three regional director seats open for nomina-
for Board positions. tion this year. Regional Nominating Committees will nomi-
nate regional directors in Regions I, III and VII. Seats are cur-
President-elect and at-large director seats
rently held by Jean-Guy Courtemanche, Boisbriand, Québec;
The National Nominating Committee is currently accepting Elizabeth Treadway, Greensboro, NC; and R. LeRoy Givens,
nominations of candidates to three positions: president-elect P.E., Corrales, NM, respectively. Courtemanche, Treadway,
and two at-large seats in the functional areas of fleet and fa- and Givens are all three completing their first terms of of-
cilities and transportation. The president-elect serves a three- fice and are therefore eligible for a second three-year term in
year term as president-elect, president, and past president. their regional director position. All terms will begin at the
start of Congress in August 2008.
In 2007, the APWA membership voted on a change to the
regional and at-large directors’ terms of office. All new direc- APWA members wishing to put names before their respec-
tors on the Board will be eligible for three two-year terms of tive Regional Nominating Committee should send a letter of
office for a total of six years. All current directors complet- recommendation for each suggested candidate to the Region
ing their first term of three years will be eligible for a second I, III or VII Nominating Committee in care of the national
term of three years for a total of six years. All terms for in- office of APWA by close of business April 1, 2008. All nomi-
dividuals on the ballot will begin at the start of Congress in nations will then be forwarded to the respective Regional
August 2008. Nominating Committees.

Ken A. Nerland from Fresno, CA, currently holds the at-large Candidate nominations may be self-nominations or may be
fleet and facilities seat. Nerland will complete his first term submitted by any APWA member or by a chapter.
in August 2008 and is eligible for nomination to this direc- How to nominate an individual for national and
tor position for one additional term of three years. regional offices
John Okamoto from Seattle, WA, currently holds the at-large A package of information (electronic format is preferred) must
transportation seat. Okamoto will complete his first term in be submitted on each nominee to contain the following:
August 2008 and is eligible for nomination to this director 1. A letter of nomination addressed to the Region I, III or
position for one additional term of three years. VII Nominating Committee or to the National Nomi-
nating Committee (whichever is appropriate). The letter
All nominations must be in the committee’s hands no later
must affirm the nominee has expressed a willingness to
than the close of business April 1, 2008. The National Nomi-
serve in the office for which they are being nominated,
nating Committee will then meet in early May to make deci-
the office designation for which he/she is being nomi-
sions on the ballot for the president-elect position and the
nated, and a brief statement to indicate the person’s ap-
two at-large positions, based on nominations received and
propriateness for the office.
issues such as diversity and leadership. Candidate nomina-
tions may be self-nominations or may be submitted by any 2. A current picture of the nominee and a letter from the
APWA member or by a chapter. nominee’s employer stating acceptance of the time
commitment involved with the position. Questions re-
The Board of Directors has issued a policy that the nomina- lated to time commitment for Board positions should
tions process utilized by the National Nominating Commit- be directed to Kaye Sullivan who will put you in contact
tee for the president-elect and at-large positions will be a with a current Board member.
“selection” process by the committee, not a “campaign” for
office. The Board strongly discourages “campaign” activity Individuals may make unlimited nominations, but each
and expenditure of funds in support of a candidacy. must be in a separate letter. All nominations must reach
APWA headquarters no later than close of business April 1,

10 APWA Reporter February 2008

2008. Electronic submissions are preferred. All nominations
and questions should be directed to: YOUR VOTE IN APWA
Kaye Sullivan DOES COUNT
APWA Deputy Executive Director
As an APWA member, you will have the opportunity
2345 Grand Blvd, Suite 700
to vote for members of the APWA Board of Directors
Kansas City, MO 64108-2625
between June 27 and July 25, 2008:
Phone: (816) 595-5233
FAX: (816) 595-5333 • APWA President-Elect;
• Two at-large directors in the functional areas of
Profile of an ideal candidate fleet and facilities and transportation; and
Required for all offices: • Regions I, III and VII Regional Directors (by APWA
• APWA member in good standing (all dues and services members in those respective regions).
fees paid).
The ballot will be available for online voting between
Desired for all offices: June 27 and July 25 on the “Members Only” section
• Knowledgeable and articulate on matters associated of the APWA website. There will also be a voting icon
with public works and willing to serve as a spokesper- on the home page of our website. If you do not have
son for APWA. access to a computer at home or work, you should be
able to access the APWA website online at your local
• Highly respected in community; solid professional ethi- public library. You may request a paper ballot from Kaye
cal character. Sullivan at (800) 848-APWA (2792) if you cannot vote
online. Additional reminders of the voting process will
• Active in chapter, committee, House of Delegates activi-
be sent through the infoNOW Communities; through
an e-mail to every member for whom we have an e-mail
• Committed to APWA and its values, and growth of the address; and in future issues of the APWA Reporter.
If you have questions, please contact Kaye Sullivan,
• Willing to devote the time necessary to the fulfillment APWA Deputy Executive Director, at ksullivan@apwa.
of the duties. net or (800) 848-APWA (2792).

Desired for president-elect:

• Service in a leadership or officership role in an APWA

• APWA national service; experience on the APWA Board

of Directors is highly desirable. NATIONAL APWA
• Continuous membership in APWA for the last five years
in a voting-eligible classification.
“You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is
• Employed in the field of public works for five years when you give of yourself that you truly give.”
within the last ten years, in a middle or higher manage- – Kahlil Gibran
ment capacity.
APWA is soliciting nominations for appointments to
• High ethical and moral standards. national offices for the August 2008–September 2009
year. Step forward and offer your expertise to your pro-
• Demonstrated leadership ability. fession. Contact your local chapter to let them know
• Personal commitment to public works. you have an interest in serving at the national level.
Information on appointments may be obtained on the
• Broad understanding of public works elements, issues APWA website at
and disciplines. nations or from Kaye Sullivan at National Headquarters
at or at (800) 848-APWA, ext. 5233.
• Exhibits qualities of national stature. A brief bio must be completed online or through hard
• Reputation of professionalism. copy. Nominations must arrive at headquarters by close
of business March 3, 2008.

February 2008 APWA Reporter 11

Positive people and positive responses:
the heart and soul of any team
John Cassis
President, The Cassis Group
Orlando, Florida
Speaker, 2008 APWA Snow Conference

Editor’s Note: John Cassis is the Opening General Session base. Then on December 11, 1995, a fire ripped through the
Speaker at the 2008 APWA North American Snow Conference company’s factories, leaving more than a dozen people hos-
in Louisville, Kentucky. His session is called “Catching a Second pitalized and the company, it seemed, in ruins.
Wind” and takes place at 3:45 p.m. Sunday, April 13 at the Ken-
tucky International Convention Center. For more information on Malden Mills chief Aaron Feuerstein, the grandson of the
the Snow Conference see pages 13-16 or visit our website at www. company’s founder, immediately announced that even with no production capacity and no immediate hope of produc-
The great historian Arnold Toynbee was once asked if he ing anything, he would continue to pay the company’s
could condense all of history into a few sentences. He re- 2,400 employees and pay their health insurance. It was esti-
plied he could do it in two words: “challenge and response.” mated that paying the company’s employees for 90 days and
So it is with our lives. It is filled with everyday challenges their health care for 180 days cost Feuerstein $10 million.
and our responses to them. His decision appeared to be bad business at the time, even
though it was highly moral.
I was traveling to Toronto going through Customs. There
was a delay and the Customs officer decided to tell me a In the end, Malden Mills was back to virtually full capacity
funny story. One day a man came through with his small within 90 days. A total of $15 million was invested in a new
son. He asked the man if he had anything to declare. The infrastructure. The committed and grateful workforce per-
man said “no” with a suspicious look on his face. So the of- formed so well that productivity and quality shot up. Before
ficer followed with, “Do you have any cigarettes to declare?” the fire, 6 to 7 percent of the company’s production was
The man said “no.” The officer asked, “Any alcohol?” Again, “off quality”; that number was reduced to 2 percent after the
the man said, “no.” At that point, the man’s son shouted fire. Feuerstein said the company’s employees paid him back
enthusiastically, “But he’s getting warmer, huh Daddy!” nearly tenfold. Feuerstein’s act was one of loyalty, honesty
and morality—old-school thoughts that are still relevant in
Some responses are better than others! today’s world.
A man had successfully run a neighborhood grocery store Positive responses and positive people with moral integrity
for many years. But then one day progress arrived. Two are the heart and soul of any team. Ohio State University did
new—and much larger—stores would open on the same a study and found 50 reasons why people lose their job. The
block. They would offer bigger selections...specials...sales. first 15 reasons had nothing to do with job skills or exper-
“You had better sell!” his friends and family cautioned. Oth- tise…but they all had to do with attitudes and our ability to
ers were less kind: “Don’t you know anything about busi- get along with other people.
ness at all? Get out now, before you lose everything.” The
man did not believe in giving in to competition or criticism. In the 1980s I worked for a hunger agency called World Re-
So, when the big day came and the larger stores opened, the lief. I visited a hospital in Calcutta, India which was run by
small-time merchant made the best of this situation. Each an extraordinary leader, Mother Teresa. She was humble, but
of the larger stores posted huge banners—one at the front of had a powerful presence. The two most important require-
the block and one right behind the man’s store. The banners ments she demanded from her staff were a joyful attitude
trumpeted: “Grand Opening Today!” The merchant posted and a loving commitment to those they served.
his own banner sandwiched between the signs of the two
large stores. His simply read: “Main Entrance!” Today more than ever we need to produce an environment
driven by positive people with inspiration, commitment,
Positive responses and positive people often cope better with loyalty, integrity and joy-filled passion. Albert Schweitzer
the grit and grind of everyday living. once said, “Sometimes your light goes out, and sometimes
your light is blown into flame again by an encounter with
In Stuart Crainer’s book The 75 Greatest Management Deci- another human being. Each of us owes the deepest thanks to
sions Ever Made he tells the story of Malden Mills, which those who have rekindled this inner light.”
is the perfect example of excellence of character. In an age
of diminishing loyalty and relentless downsizing, it stood The challenge we each face every day: Do we light up peo-
for traditional corporate values. Loyal employees worked ple’s lives or do we blow out their light?
alongside trusting management. Customer retention and
employee retention both registered a staggering 95 percent. See you in Louisville. Hopefully, there will be no snow!
The company, based in Lawrence, Massachusetts, had re- John Cassis can be reached at
mained steadfastly—some said foolishly—loyal to its home

12 APWA Reporter February 2008

Online Registration Now Open!

Join more than 1,000 public works professionals from streets, roads, and Not only does the Snow Conference have the best variety of vendors, it also
transportation departments from all across the Snow Belt of the U.S. and features the best technical and educational program out there with dynamic
Canada. It’s the only place you’ll find this much experience and knowledge of keynote speakers and more than 40 education sessions, roundtables, and
snow fighting and winter road maintenance under one roof. technical tours to choose from. This education program will help you stay
abreast of the latest state-of-the-art practices and procedures in snow & ice
The American Public Works Association is the public works community’s top control and winter road maintenance. You’ll come away with specific ideas to
resource for information and expertise on winter operations. APWA’s Snow fine-tune your winter operations program.
Conference combines four days of quality education programs and technical
tours with opportunities to network with manufacturers, distributors, Come get informed, inspired, and motivated at the
consultants and other public works professionals. 48th annual North American Snow Conference!

The Snow Conference exhibit floor just keeps getting better! More than 120
companies will showcase everything you need in equipment, technology,
products and services for snow & ice removal and winter operations. Visit for a current list of this year’s exhibitors.

American Public Works Association Presents:

2008 APWA North American Snow Conference

April 13 - 16, 2008

Kentucky International Convention Center, Louisville, Kentucky

Hosted by the Kentucky Chapter of APWA
Sunday, April 13 Tuesday, April 15
General Sessions & Keynote Speakers

Opening General Session Closing General Session

Catching a Second Wind How to Succeed, Stay Sane, and Have
Speaker: John Cassis Fun at Work: A Survival Guide for the
Motivation, management and
Road Weary
building a winning team often
Speaker: David Rabiner
become simple steps when the
Too much work? Testy
situation is viewed with an accurate
constituents? Office politics?
perspective. John shares humorous
Nasty commute? In his most
stories and ideas on how to sit
popular program, the closing
back, take a deep breath and
speaker, David Rabiner, shows how
“Catch a Second Wind” while
small shifts in attitude can make
turning life’s challenges into
big differences in our success,
opportunities. Attendees will gain a renewed sense of passion and
emotional well-being, and the
purpose for their work, which is crucial in building an effective team
amount of fun we have at work.
Men and women in the public sector, whether department heads or
front-line supervisors, have all raved that this program is not only
With his diverse background, John is a modern-day renaissance
great fun, it gives them tools they can use immediately to get along
man. He played baseball for the California Angels organization,
better with just about everyone.
was the inspirational speaker for the Chicago Bears from 1983-95,
served as minister to a small church in Colorado, addressed issues
David Rabiner is a speaker and trainer based in Portland, Oregon.
of world hunger as director of special projects for World Relief and
Since 1993, he has worked with more than 1,600 groups in 44
became a professional golfer in 2002.
states and 12 countries. His client list includes more than 300 city,
county, and other government agencies and the associations that
Monday, April 14
represent them. As a former city and county employee in Oregon,
General Session “Talk Show” he knows firsthand the challenges of navigating public politics,
Weathering the Storm – Don’t Go Out maintaining goodwill with demanding citizens, and leading and
Unprepared managing public sector employees.
Talk Show Host: Allison Martin, Mayor’s Office, Louisville,
Talk Show Guests: Diana Clonch, Ohio Department of Exhibit Dates & Hours
Transportation, Columbus, OH; Greg Hicks, Metro Louisville Sunday, April 13
Public Works and Assets, Louisville, KY; Jonathon Gano, City 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
of Springfield, MO; Bruce McPhail, City of Winnipeg, MB;
Larry Schneider, City of Ft. Collins, CO Monday, April 14
9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
This year’s “talk show” features panelists who have seen their share
of extreme winter weather storms as well as crossed paths with the Tuesday, April 15
media during or after the storms. Attend this interactive session to 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
find out about cutting-edge communication with citizens and media
during winter weather. Find out what actions were taken in these
major storm events and the lessons learned. Hear strategies and
realistic expectations of snow removal. Come armed with questions
for the panelists.
2008 APWA North American Snow Conference

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. 3:00 – 4:15 p.m.

Snow Conference at a Glance

Lunch on the Exhibit Floor Closing General Session
April 13 How to Succeed, Stay Sane, and Have Fun at
12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
Work: A Survival Guide for the Road Weary
Roundtable Discussions
2:30 − 3:30 p.m. 5:30 p.m.
2:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Education Sessions Buses depart for Kentucky
Education Sessions
Cold, Hard Facts: Count the Costs of Deicing Derby Night at Churchill
Materials 3:00 – 3:30 p.m. Downs
RWIS Development in Kentucky Refreshment Break on the
ODOT District 4 MPT – The Ultimate Snow & Exhibit Floor
Ice Fighting Machine 3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
3:45 – 5:00 p.m. Education Sessions
April 16
Opening General Session
Catching a Second Wind
8:00 – 11:00 a.m.
5:00 – 7:00 p.m. Technical Tours
Exhibit Opening & Welcome
Reception April 15 Tour 1
Airport Snow Removal Equipment
Tuesday Exhibit Hours:
8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Tour 2
7:30 – 8:30 a.m. Louisville Underground

April 14 Donuts & Dialogue

Start your day with a selection of
great education sessions accompanied
Exhibit Hours: by donuts and coffee.
9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
8:30 – 9:30 a.m.
7:30 – 9:00 a.m. Coffee Break on the
General Session “Talk Show” Exhibit Floor
Weathering the Storm – Don’t Go Out
9:30 – 10:30 a.m.
Education Sessions
9:00 – 10:00 a.m.
Coffee Break on the 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Exhibit Floor Non-compete Exhibit Time
10:00 – 11:00 a.m. 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon
Education Sessions Lunch on the Exhibit Floor
10:00 – 11:15 a.m. 12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
Education Sessions Education Sessions
1:45 – 2:45 p.m.
11:15 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Education Sessions
Non-compete Exhibit Time


2008 APWA North American Snow Conference

Conference Location Note: There are a limited number of rooms available in the APWA group block for the

General information
night of Saturday, April 12 due to the Thunder Over Louisville event.
and Hotels Once the block sells out, your rate may be much higher for Saturday night.

Exhibits, education sessions, and onsite If you will be arriving in Louisville on Saturday, plan to arrive in the morning or as early
registration will be located at the Kentucky in the afternoon as possible. Traffic will be heavy all day, with street closings near the
International Convention Center. riverfront beginning early afternoon and highway closings before the fireworks begin.

Special APWA room rates are available at Marriott Louisville Downtown Galt House Hotel & Suites
the official Snow Conference hotels – the (across the street from convention center, (four blocks from convention center,
Marriott Louisville Downtown and the Galt connected by pedway) connected by pedway)
House Hotel & Suites, both located within 280 West Jefferson Street 140 North 4th Avenue
walking distance of the convention center Louisville, KY 40202 Louisville, KY 40202
and connected by pedway. APWA will not APWA Room Rate: $139 APWA Room Rate: $122 standard room or
be providing shuttle service. Cutoff Date: March 14, 2008 $132 executive suite
Toll Free: 800-533-0127 Cutoff Date: March 14, 2008
Make your hotel reservations early! Special Hotel Direct: 502-627-5045 Toll Free: 800-843-4258
APWA room rates are offered on a space Online: Hotel Direct: 502-589-5200
available basis until March 14, 2008. Rates Group Code: apwapwa Online:
do not include tax, currently 15%. Group Number: 215794

Register before March 15 and save $50 on a full registration!

Full Registration includes entrance Exhibit floor passes are available for
into the exhibit hall, all education sessions Monday and Tuesday only and do not
and roundtables, Sunday reception on the include lunch.
exhibit floor, Monday and Tuesday lunch
Guest/Spouse Registrations are
on the exhibit floor, refreshment breaks,
available at a special rate, and include
the Tuesday evening Kentucky Derby
entrance into the exhibit hall and education
Night event at Churchill Downs, and the
sessions, plus the Tuesday evening Kentucky
Wednesday morning technical tour program.
Derby Night event.
One-Day Registrations are available
See the registration form for individual
for Sunday, Monday or Tuesday. Sunday
categories and rates. If your city has an
includes the reception on the exhibit floor.
APWA agency membership, please note that
Monday and Tuesday include lunch. Tuesday
individuals must be listed on your agency
does not include the Kentucky Derby Night
roster to receive the member registration
event, but you may purchase a ticket with
your registration.
You must have a full registration to
participate in the Wednesday technical tour

Online registration is available at


Water’s Number One at the Box Office

Colene Vogel
Technical Services Program Manager
American Public Works Association
Kansas City, Missouri

he Water Resources Management Committee made three months (generally, December through February). This
some big plans for Congress last year. They put to- year’s deadline is March 3.
gether a little thing they called the Stormwater Sum-
mit. They wanted Congress attendees to have the These people got involved! They are the members of the Wa-
chance to share ideas on all aspects of stormwater manage- ter Resources Management Committee:
ment: regulations, program administration and public edu- • Joe Superneau, Chair, Springfield, MA
cation, as well as the technical aspects of system design and • Keith Duncan, Norman, OK
construction. • Mary Meloy, Bend, OR
The one-day event took place on Workshop Wednesday. • Matt Singleton, Grapevine, TX
With so many great workshops going on, the committee • Bill Spearman, Columbia, SC
had hopes of attracting at least 75 attendees to the Storm- • Tom Trice, Bloomfield Hills, MI
water Summit. More than 200 came. Their pride in an event The At-Large Director acting as Board Liaison to the com-
well done quickly turned into “now what?” as planning for mittee is George Crombie. The staff liaison is Colene Vogel.
Congress 2008 began hot on the heels of the Congress 2007
wrap-up. The committee is always looking for input from APWA
members and chapters. If you’d like more information on
When the credits rolled for Stormwater Summit ’07, the what the committee’s up to or how to reach them, just go to
name at the top read Bill Spearman. Bill is closing in on the and select “Technical Committees.”
end of his third term on the Water Resources Management
Committee and he’s a past member of the Congress Program Colene Vogel is also the staff liaison to the Solid Waste Management
Review Committee. He took the lead on the Summit and and Facilities & Grounds Committees. She can be reached at (816)
definitely deserves top billing. 595-5221 or

As for 2008, sequels are always a challenge. Who will write

the screenplay? Will there be a new director or cast changes?
There will definitely be a new location. Will the audience During the week of
December 10, APWA
return or have they had their fill of the story? And, there’s President Larry Frevert
always a chance that a blockbuster could spawn a whole and his wife, Carol,
franchise that continues for years to come. along with Region VIII
Director Ann Burnett-
After much discussion, the committee decided to cover green Troisi and her husband,
Bob, attended the
infrastructure and flood control issues at the next Summit.
San Diego/Imperial
They also decided that it was important to make sure that Counties and Northern
the sessions are information exchanges and not just presen- California Chapters’
tations. Attendees need an opportunity to share their expe- holiday luncheons.
Both President Frevert
riences and ask questions. When everyone is participating
and Board member
and involved, everyone benefits. Burnett-Troisi spoke at
the luncheons. In the
Speaking of participation and involvement, would you like photo at left, Northern
to be considered for membership on the Water Resources California Chapter
Management Committee or another committee? Members President Lauren
Warren presents a
of APWA’s Technical Committees are appointed by the Presi- recognition to outgoing
dent-Elect and serve two-year terms. Appointments are made Chapter President Phil
from a list of nominees. Nominations are made online, usu- Harrington.
ally by the individual but sometimes by a chapter or Board
member. Nominations are open each year for approximately

February 2008 APWA Reporter 17

Leading by example: the importance
of diversity
A speech by Jelynne LeBlanc Burley
Jelynne LeBlanc Burley, Deputy City Manager, City of San Antonio, Texas; Jason E. Cosby, Assistant Director,
and Alyssa M. Lopez, Senior Management Analyst, Department of Public Works, City of San Antonio, Texas

n September 11, 2007, Jelynne LeBlanc Burley, Depu-

ty City Manager for the City of San Antonio, provided
an inspiring speech at the Congress Diversity Brunch
speaking of her achievements throughout her career.
From the great state of Louisiana, Ms. Burley began her career
with the City of San Antonio in 1984 and has served such
departments as Budget and Research, Parks and Recreation,
Public Works, Development Services, International Affairs
and the Office of Military Transformation. While serving as
Special Projects Manager in the Office of Dome Development
she was responsible for project management and design coor-
dination, sports franchise negotiation, and administration of
the Small, Minority, and Woman-Owned Business Advocacy
Program for the Alamodome.

During her tenure with the City, Ms. Burley has delivered
more than $550M in capital projects in the past 23 years.
While obviously facing many different challenges during this
time, she mentioned that when she reflects back on her career
Jelynne LeBlanc Burley speaks with Kenneth Emezium, Supervising
she did not see them as challenges but rather as opportunities Civil Engineer, City of Berkeley, Calif., following the Diversity Brunch
to improve herself into what she has become today. at the San Antonio Congress.

Ms. Burley realizes the importance and value of education. For example, she is in the Rotary Club of San Antonio, San
She has a B.A. from Southern University and an M.A. from Antonio Area Girl Scouts Nominating Committee, Texas
Trinity University. She is also a 1999 graduate of the Con- City Management Association, Urban Management Assis-
struction Executive Program at Texas A&M University as tants of South Texas and is on her third term on the Na-
well as a part-time instructor at Trinity University. tional Forum for Black Public Administrators Board of Di-
Working for the public sector, Ms. Burley understands the rectors. Ms. Burley also finds time to participate in various
importance of both work experience and civic participation. volunteer community events throughout the city. These ac-
She expressed the importance of having high-quality expe- tivities and associations have allowed her the opportunity to
riences in work that allow you to build competence, cred- understand her work and see the benefits it has on the city.
ibility and confidence, and elaborated on the importance She is blessed and humbled to work for the greater good of
of participating in community functions and organizations. the community.

Diversity “The true measure of an individual is how he treats

a person who can do him absolutely no good.”
Awareness − Ann Landers, syndicated columnist
Corner 1918-2002

18 APWA Reporter February 2008

Being successful in her career is the product of being able to Jelynne LeBlanc Burley can be reached at (210) 207-6543 or
get the career and social support that mentors, sponsors and; Jason E. Cosby, a member of APWA’s
special peers provide. Being active in the community and Road Safety Subcommittee and former member of the Diversity
professional organizations also provides a great opportunity and Membership Committees and National Committee on
for networking. By partaking in such activities and meeting Uniform Traffic Control Devices, can be reached at (210)
new people, she has been able to experience new cultures 207-7785 or; and Alyssa M. Lopez
and different thought processes and has provided an excel- can be reached at (210) 207-5862 or alyssa.munoz.lopez@
lent opportunity to learn a new way of doing things and
enhancing what she has already learned.

Her advice is to stay engaged in new

methods of learning. Read books and

Simply beautiful.
journal articles to discover new tech-
nologies that might assist you in your
work. This Congress was a perfect ex-
ample of how you and your employees
can network and learn the latest and
greatest public works has to offer.

Amidst getting an education, gaining

new work experiences, joining new Looking for a
organizations and volunteering in the
community, it is also important for you
fresh, natural
to take a step back and look at the big- solution to
ger picture. Ask yourself if you are do-
ing everything you can to add value. treating urban
Are there areas that allow room for im- runoff? Check
provement? Do not sit back and make
excuses for not accomplishing your out the future
goals. This is the time to figure out how of stormwater
you can make it happen. If you are an
employee looking to advance in your treatment today.
career, ask yourself what you need to
do to move up. Do you need additional
certifications or different work experi- Drop-in-place construction
ences? If you are in management, ask
yourself what opportunities are avail-
able for your staff to achieve their in-
Filterra offers you value and performance in a small and shallow footprint.
dividual goals. How can you assist in
ensuring that they have the tools neces-
You’ll appreciate low capital costs, increased buildable space, and user-
sary to grow within the organization? friendly maintenance.

Ms. Burley closed her speech by ex- Approved by Washington DOE, Maryland MDE, and Virginia DCR, you’re
pressing the importance of com- assured of high removal rates of TSS, nutrients, metals and bacteria.
mitment to yourself and your
organization. Among all of her ac- A beautiful solution is yours today. Contact us to receive your Design
complishments, she has two more— Assistance Kit, or for more information:
she has raised two very proud and in-
dependent children. This is proof that Headquarters: 866-349-3458
it can be done and you can have it all. Filterra is a division of
Take charge of your own career as this
is your responsibility.
A Growing Idea in Stormwater Filtration.
February 2008 APWA Reporter 19
APWA Book Review

Preparing Sewer Overflow

Response Plans: A Guidebook for
Local Governments
55 pp • 1998 • APWA • CD-ROM

This publication offers APWA members

and other wastewater collection system
owners and operators response plans
to address sanitary sewer overflows
(SSOs). APWA believes that following
a thorough and effective response plan to minimize any
health risks or damage to private property or the environ-
ment from SSOs is an important part of the overall manage-
ment of a sanitary sewer system. This Guidebook is designed
to assist communities to do just that.

In practice, addressing SSOs within a watershed context will

mean applying management strategies such as assessing all
environmental problems within a watershed comprehen-
sively, both point and non-point sources, and prioritizing
management efforts based on fixing the worst problems first
in a cost-effective manner.

The Guidebook is designed to help local system owners and

operators plan for effective SSO response. In the best man-
aged systems, SSO management does not end with the im-
mediate response. The flow chart (above right) illustrates a
systematic approach in which operation and maintenance
and capital improvement planning are applied to the man-
agement of SSOs. APWA encourages its members and other wastewater col-
This publication covers: lection system owners and operators to develop and imple-
ment SSO response plans using this document as a guide,
• Objectives; organization of plan; sewer overflow tracking and to use the referenced SSO management flow chart and
the watershed management concept as long-term tools to
• Overflow response procedure
improve their systems and the quality of their communities’
• Public advisory procedure water resources.

• Regulatory agency notification plan To obtain your copy, please call the APWA Bookstore at (800)
848-APWA, ext. 5254. Or, for more information on purchas-
• Media notification procedure ing this publication and other American Public Works As-
sociation books, please visit the APWA Bookstore online at
• Distribution and maintenance of SORP
The publication also contains several appendices and ta-
bles, suggested reading material, information on calculat-
ing overflow rates and volumes, example response plans,
flow charts, scripted news releases, and other valuable and
useful information.

20 APWA Reporter February 2008

or more information about these programs or to register online, visit
Program information will be updated as it becomes available. Questions? Call the Education Department
at 1-800-848-APWA.

7 The Black and White of Pavement #3: Construction of Quality Flexible and Rigid Pavements

7-8 PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Phoenix, AZ

February 20-22 Public Fleet Management Workshop – San Jose, CA

21 Water—A Precious Resource in Diminished Supply

28-29 PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Orlando, FL

6 Mastering the Media—Telling the Public Works Story Your Way!

6-7 PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – San Francisco, CA

10-12 Construction Inspection: A Review Workshop – Atlanta, GA

13-14 PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Washington, DC

14 Self Assessment Using the Management Practices Manual – Encinitas, CA

20 TARGET Emergency Preparedness #3: AFTER the Disaster – Reimbursement

20-21 PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Los Angeles, CA

27-28 PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Dallas, TX

3 Work Zones—Safety First

3-4 PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Seattle, WA

9-10 Symposium on Climate Change – Tempe, AZ

10-11 PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Las Vegas, NV

13-16 North American Snow Conference – Louisville, KY

17 Innovative Funding—Getting to the End of the Rainbow

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February 2008 APWA Reporter 21

No good deed goes unpunished
Doing the right thing when confronted with ethical dilemmas
John Lisenko
Retired Public Works Director
City of Foster City, California

In November 2007, the APWA Leader- generally accepted in our society, such Outside our organization, when we
ship and Management Committee con- as courage, compassion, tolerance, interact with other public agencies
cluded its series of articles on public honesty, loyalty, trustworthiness, fair- on a regional basis, we may face the
works leadership and management issues ness, responsibility, civility, profession- dilemma of staying loyal to the inter-
entitled “The Baker’s Potluck.” This was alism and respect. ests and policies of our agency while
the third series of articles (the first being recognizing that some of those may be
We may also rely on the Golden Rule:
“The Baker’s Dozen,” the second being in conflict with the greater good of the
Do unto others as you would have
“The Baker’s Menu”) that discuss various region. If you are on a regional com-
them do unto you. Applying these val-
leadership and management topics of in- mittee or board, one way to resolve this
ues to a given set of circumstances can
terest to APWA members. The committee’s dilemma is to advocate for your local
help us decide what we ought to do,
new series is entitled “Recipes for Success” interest, but vote on the basis of what’s
but finding that answer can be chal-
and touches on a variety of leadership and best for the region.
lenging when several different values
management topics. Along with each arti-
are in conflict, and we need to choose
cle is an actual recipe for a favorite public How many people have to get killed
between them.
works dish submitted by a member. Each before you do something???? – the
recipe is a favorite from the members in Circumstances that present us with Traffic Engineer’s dilemma. How do
their department. Give them a try. several possible outcomes that we must you respond to citizens’ concerns about
choose from based on our system of safety that result in requests for (stop
values are called ethical dilemmas. As sign, speed bump, speed limits, signal,
Good people do not need laws to tell them
public works practitioners we encoun- traffic calming…you name it) and do
to act responsibly, while bad people will
ter ethical dilemmas on a daily basis. so in a professional manner, balancing
find a way around the laws. – Plato
Here are some examples: a variety of interests? Add the political
When I do good, I feel good; when I do pressure from councils and commis-
Loyalty. Within our organization, one
bad, I feel bad. That’s my religion. – might ask “Loyalty to whom?” Faced sions that are trying to satisfy a vocal
Abraham Lincoln with the decision whether or not to re- minority, and the job becomes more
port a rule infraction that we witness, complex, adding a personal dimension
When the topic of ethics is mentioned
our loyalty to our fellow employees to the decision-making process. Often
in the media, it is usually in connection
may come into conflict with our loy- a traffic engineer must take a stand
with someone getting caught breaking
alty to our supervisor. If our supervisor that represents sound engineering
a law. Recent examples include use of
is more concerned with meeting the principles and safety for the majority
performance-enhancing drugs by ath-
ends and not the means, and the su- of the traveling public without having
letes, insider trading by corporate ex-
pervisor’s methods of achieving orga- the tangible support of that majority.
ecutives and various moral lapses by
nizational goals involve circumventing It’s a stand that requires a certain de-
prominent politicians. To categorize
rules and procedures, then our loyalty gree of personal courage balanced with
these as ethical issues is somewhat
to our supervisor may conflict with or- compassion for the emotional stake
misleading, since ethics isn’t so much
ganizational loyalty. Our loyalty to our of the vocal minority. The old adage
about what we have to do (obey the
organization may be in conflict with “It takes two fatalities, one injury and
law!) but more about what we ought
our loyalty to the public if the organi- three dead cats to warrant a signal…”
to do when presented with alternative
zation’s policies are not consistent with isn’t the answer, but neither is the in-
courses of action, all of which may be
our view of what’s right (the “Whistle- stallation of unwarranted traffic con-
legal, but have varying consequences
blower’s dilemma”). The risk we take trol devices that ultimately defeat the
to ourselves and to others.
in doing the right thing in these situ-
purpose they are intended for by breed-
As a guideline for what we ought to do, ations can result in consequences to us
ing contempt for the law.
we may refer to a set of values that are that range from loss of friendship to
loss of employment.

22 APWA Reporter February 2008

Doing unto others: customer ser- sition of devil’s advocate, demanding tant if not more so than reality. If the
vice and the use of public funds. of them a high degree of professional- same vendor seems to be getting the
Lending a helping hand to a citizen in ism, patience, courage and integrity. work over and over again, even if there
the course of our job is part of customer is a seemingly objective procurement
Who’s your buddy? Public con- process, then it is highly likely that
service. How far you extend that hand
tracts, public funds and the per- someone will think there is something
is not always clearly defined. We have
ception of misuse. Much of what fishy going on. At that point, you are
to strike a balance between individual
we do in public works is predicated guilty until proven innocent, a no-win
service (which can be highly time-
on developing good working relation- position to be in. For this reason, and
consuming) and service to the public
ships with our vendors—consultants, also because familiarity can breed con-
in general, which tends to represent a
contractors, sales people, and the like. tempt, it is a good idea to periodically
more efficient use of public resources.
Good relationships achieve a number reevaluate long-term contractual rela-
Requests for individual service are usu- of desired outcomes, including timely
ally accompanied by emotional appeals tionships.
conflict resolution, clear and open
to our compassion and desire to apply communication and, most important- Ethics is doing the right thing
the Golden Rule, while our primary ly, efficient use of public funds. Know- when no one is looking. While
mandate to do proactive asset manage- ing how to maintain objectivity and be many of our actions receive public re-
ment is predicated on rational and logi- fiscally responsible, while at the same view and scrutiny, a goodly portion of
cal decisions that are oriented to long- time trying to maintain good personal our daily activities are monitored by no
term goals and objectives, as opposed to relationships with your contractual one but us. Most public works activi-
more immediate gratification. Agencies partners, is not always an easy task and ties are geared to long-term benefits,
with limited resources (and in today’s can involve resolving ethical conflicts and the consequences associated with
environment, that’s most public agen- between values such as friendship, fair- whether we do the right thing or not
cies) that fail to address this dilemma ness, responsibility and loyalty. While may not surface for a long time. Since
end up devoting inordinate time to we may believe that our relationships public works is a mostly monopolistic
“reactive” maintenance in response to are on sound ethical grounds, in the activity, not even the market can deter-
individual needs and not enough time public sector perception is as impor- mine whether we’ve done a good job or
to systematic and proactive asset pres-

Environmental ethics…and the

use of public funds. Environmental
ethics is a complex subject, that, in ad-
dition to other values, asks us to con-
sider man’s place in the universe and
your quality
how that fits within the balance of na- DOT
ture. From a public works perspective, CERTIFIED
the ethical dilemma is precipitated by
the fact that environmental impacts are CAL-TRANS
associated with most, if not all, public CERTIFIED
works projects and activities (which are
primarily for man’s benefit). Because
funds are limited, only so much can
be spent on environmental mitigation ASTM C685
before an activity or a project is ren-
dered unfeasible. At times, this makes
public works professionals appear to CemenTech Volumetric Concrete Mixers produce
be insensitive to the environment quality concrete to meet your exacting standards
while trying to fulfill their fiduciary — day in and day out, load after load. Expect the
and project management responsibil- best, because CemenTech delivers.
ity. Unfortunately, the general public is
seldom aware of, or is asked to resolve
this dilemma involving the use of their
tax dollars. That leaves it up to what
is often an acrimonious “environmen-
tal process” which often places public
works managers in the unenviable po-

February 2008 APWA Reporter 23
not—we’re the only game in town! This Ethics courses tend to emphasize how than any expressed intent to give good
puts an added burden and responsibil- to avoid doing the wrong thing rather customer service. The “Enemy” may
ity on the public works professional to than how to select the right course of be “those greedy developers” or “those
set both the standard for performance action from several acceptable alterna- outsiders—the commuters who irre-
and also be the judge of it. tives. Learning what constitutes conflict sponsibly drive through our town,” or
of interest and what type of gifts should it may even be the public—“those un-
Ethics codes and courses, mission
be reported does not provide us with grateful whiners who want the service
statements rules, and regulations.
guidance on how to deal with the more but don’t want to pay for it.” These
Many public agencies and profession-
subtle pressures and behaviors that may blanket generalizations, sometimes ut-
al organizations have codified ethi-
influence our decisions on important tered out of a legitimate feeling of frus-
cal standards, sometimes as a formal
matters such as selecting consultants or tration, influence attitudes and beliefs
“Code of Ethics,” sometimes embedded
dealing with contractors. and translate into actions by employ-
in a Mission Statement or in a State-
ees who, in the course of doing their
ment of Professional Conduct. There Organizational culture. A more
job, are trying to do their best to re-
are also numerous ethics courses that important influence than mission
solve ethical dilemmas under the pres-
are offered (mandatory in California statements or ethics codes on how em-
sure of time and limited resources.
for all elected and appointed officials). ployees will resolve ethical dilemmas is
For the person whose upbringing has organizational culture. Organizations Neither customer service training,
included a grounding in basic morals that profess their virtues through eth- team building or process “reengineer-
and values, these codes and standards ics codes and mission statements but ing” can alter an organizational culture
are a confirmation of those values, but do not “walk the talk” send mixed mes- until all levels of the organization ad-
not very helpful in resolving ethical di- sages to their employees. Whom the mit to and are willing to openly con-
lemmas that require us to select from organization perceives as “the Enemy” front the biases and prejudices that are
options that all appear to be consistent will often determine staff attitudes and embedded within.
with the basic value system. how the organization interacts with
its external environment much more So what can we do?
First, we need to recognize that the
situation is an ethical dilemma. This
Order Custom Bulk recognition is usually characterized by

Editorial Reprints
an uneasiness in the pit of our stom-
ach, a vague feeling of discomfort or
anxiety, or perhaps even annoyance
and anger. These feelings are like the
Now that you have been yellow light at the intersection. They
featured in the APWA are a warning to us that the decisions
that follow need to be made carefully,
Reporter, why not leverage and not based solely on our emotional
this opportunity to promote response to the situation.

your product or service with Next we need to identify what category

the dilemma falls in:
custom reprints?
• Is it a “personal cost” ethical di-
Custom reprints are available in quantities of 100 or lemma wherein your job, reputa-
more and are printed on high-quality, gloss-coated tion, friendship, etc. may be on
paper stock in black & white or full color. Custom the line? Or, is it a:
reprints make great handouts at trade shows, inserts for
• Right vs. Right dilemma, where
media kits and direct mail pieces. Custom PDF’s are also
one or more positive values are in
available for posting on your website. conflict?

Call our reprint department at Following is a checklist that can be used

to help arrive at an outcome that will
(800) 259-0470 for complete details. leave you feeling good about yourself:

• See which values apply to your di-


24 APWA Reporter February 2008

• Don’t lose sight of the facts. Summary to make a difference and to contribute
It has often occurred to me that how in a meaningful way to our profession,
• Recognize that in the public sector
one reacts to a traffic signal provides a our families and our community, we
perception can be as or sometimes
good model for defining ethical behav- have to wrestle with the ethical dilem-
more important than reality. Vi-
ior. When we approach a signalized in- mas that confront us daily, and make
sualize the impact of seeing your
tersection, it is clear to most of us that the best choice we can from those that
decision on the front page of next
the red light means stop, a green light are available.
day’s paper, and how comfortable
you will be in defending it. means go. If we go through a red light “The sad truth is that most evil is done by
we knowingly break the law and risk people who never make up their minds to
• Sort out the options and look for suffering the consequences if we get be good or evil.” – Hannah Arendt
the option that has the greatest caught. A green light means we have
potential for overall benefit with unrestricted permission to go (unless John Lisenko is a retired Public Works Di-
the least harm. Visualize explain- there’s a fire truck heading our way!). rector with the City of Foster City, Califor-
ing to a child why you did what Approaching a yellow light, however, nia. He occasionally consults and is also
you did. we have several options—slow down, one of the organizers and instructors of
speed up, or continue at the same the APWA Northern California Chapter’s
• Step “outside yourself” and try to
speed. While many will automatically Public Works Institute. He can be reached
analyze the situation dispassion-
slow down (these are the truly ethical at
ately. One way to do this is to talk
people who invite road rage and rear-
to someone who doesn’t have the
end collisions), a fair number of us will
same personal stake in the out-
decide what to do based on the situa-
come that you do. Seek out the
tion. Our choice will be influenced by 1 medium to large onion coarsely
advice of “ethical barometers”—
our personality, our frame of mind at chopped
people in your organization who
the time, our preoccupation with where 1 green onion (scallion) sliced
are respected because they “walk
we are going, how late we are, etc. Only 1 green pepper diced
the talk.”
by stepping outside of ourselves can we 1 pound cube steak cut in ½ inch
• If you’re a “can do” energetic go- appreciate what the yellow light is re- cubes
getter, prone to focus more on ally there for—not to be interpreted in 1 can (15 oz) kidney beans
ends rather than means, pay atten- terms of our personal needs and wants, undrained
tion to those who ask seemingly but in terms of our concern for the 1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes
“dumb” questions and work at a safety of others. It is there to alert us 1 can (6 oz) tomato paste (can be
more deliberate pace. that we need to proceed with caution, flavored)
because our actions could have serious 1 bag of shredded cheddar cheese
• Listen to your perennial critics and consequences not just to us, but to oth- 1 tsp chili powder
council “Gadflies.” Although they er users of the roadway. Recognition of 1 bag of Four Cheese or Nacho
may be annoying, irritating and of- this fact puts us on the path to behav- Doritos
ten irrational, like the “Village Idiot” ing ethically. 1 tsp crushed red pepper
of olden days, these folks sometimes 1 tsp black pepper
have an uncanny knack for piercing The reward for doing the right thing
Assorted hot sauces
through the veneer of good inten- is not always immediate, nor does it
1 tsp garlic powder
tions and rationalization and iden- always come to us from the external
1 tsp salt
tifying the hypocrisy inherent in environment. On the contrary, behav-
3 tsp sugar
some organizational cultures. ing ethically can have negative con-
sequences, such as loss of friendships, Place ingredients in crock pot in
• It helps to remember that it is the public criticism, negative impacts to listed order and cook on low for 3
public’s money we are dealing certain members of the public and/or to 5 hours (depending upon crock
with, while at the same time treat- the environment, and can lead to a lot pot or until the savory aroma
ing it as if it were our own hard- of personal agonizing over the alterna- overcomes you and you have to
earned dollars, and not parting tives we discarded when we picked the have it now). Stir occasionally
with it too readily in the interest one we thought best. Sometimes doing until done.
of resolving disputes, satisfying nothing seems like the safest course.
individual constituent demands However, doing nothing is seldom an Don Jacobovitz, P.E.
or otherwise easing the burden of acceptable alternative, and does not Public Works Director
having to prioritize and make dif- absolve us of responsibility for the con- Putnam County, FL
ficult decisions and choices. sequences of our inaction. If we want

February 2008 APWA Reporter 25

What’s happened to
Paul A. Hindman, P.E.
Manager, Design, Construction and Maintenance Program
Urban Drainage and Flood Control District
Denver, Colorado

Editor’s Note: Paul Hindman was the 73 billion koruna (2.6 billion dollars),” of the old vehicles that were sold in
recipient of a 2007 Jennings Randolph according to Deutsche Presse Agentur. It the country while under communistic
Fellowship for an exchange program with was reported as the “…worst flooding rule. However, most of the new vehi-
the Slovak and Czech Republics. During in Prague’s 800-year history” by CNN. cles are compact in size, unlike in the
his visit to the Slovak Public Works Asso- Following the flood, as has happened U.S. where you find the opposite. The
ciation and Czech Republic Public Works throughout their history, rebuilding public works facilities are either old or
Association Joint Conference in October occurred and “For the most part ‘life new. For example, in Nové Mestro Vad
2007, he investigated how the Slovak and is back to normal’ said Terezin spokes- Náhom, Slovak Republic, we visited
Czech public works professionals have man Roman Cervenka.” the public works facility for the city. As
managed floods and how they have pro- shown in the photo, the administrative
What I discovered on my travels was offices are typical of other buildings
tected their citizens and property. He has
both expected and unexpected. built in the communistic era, function
submitted the following article reflecting
his experiences and will make a presenta- The Expected over aesthetics. However, in the yard
tion on his findings at the 2008 APWA of the facility is a brand new asphalt
Water flows downhill just like it does
Congress in New Orleans. plant that was recently purchased from
in the United States. Public works pro-
a German manufacturer. It rivals any-
This is probably the most frequently fessionals have managed the flow of
thing I have seen in the U.S.
asked question I receive from people stormwater by installing drop struc-
when they hear I went to the Czech tures and bank protection in devel-
and Slovak Republics: “What’s hap- oped areas following sound engineer-
pened to Czechoslovakia?” The answer ing principles. Along waterways where
is Czechoslovakia no longer exists. In development exists, the grade of the
1989 Czechoslovakia saw the fall of channel, river or stream has to be flat-
communism. This is commonly re- tened to control the degradation of the
ferred to as the Velvet Revolution. In waterway. The banks have been stabi-
1993 the country was split into two lized using rock (riprap), man-made
countries, the Czech and Slovak Re- structures made out of concrete, or a
publics, which existed prior to the 1918 combination of both.
merger that followed WWI. Since 1989, Public Works administrative building, Nové
both countries have adopted a capital- Mestro Vad Náhom, Slovakia
istic economy along with a democratic
government. Both countries have fully Another surprising part of the trip was
embraced democracy and are striving learning that all the towns and cities
under the new regime. are run by private industry. An elected
town or city council selects a private
The purpose of my trip to the Czech firm to provide all the public works ser-
and Slovak Republics was to investigate vices which, by contrast, in the U.S. are
their drainage and flood control facili- performed by public works employees.
ties and to compare and contrast them In the Slovak and Czech Republics they
to the ones in my own organization. have completely embraced privatiza-
Drop Structure on Vltava River, Prague, Czech
The Czech and Slovak region has ex- tion. Each firm is hired for five years and
perienced flooding since the area was their contract is extended if the council
inhabited in the 3rd century B.C. when
The Unexpected views their service as being satisfactory.
the Celtic migrations occurred. As re- A service that is not the responsibility
The first thing that surprised me upon
cently as 2002, a major flood occurred of the local public works company is
arrival to the Slovak Republic was how
that caused “…flood damage totaling major drainage. They are required to
every car was new. I didn’t observe any

26 APWA Reporter February 2008

maintain and improve the storm sewer control facilities. I was not able to dis- Return Trip
system, but at the point that the outfall cuss major drainage with a represen- The trip was very enlightening and I
discharges into a waterway, no matter tative of the federal government but made many new friends. Our fellow
how small, the responsibility lies with I was able to observe a few examples public works professionals in the Slo-
the federal government. Where the lo- of their work. In Trenčínské Teplice, vak and Czech Republics are working
cal public works company has jurisdic- Slovakia, the main waterway histori- very hard to make their communities
tion they take great pride in their re- cally traveled through the middle of the best they can be. This is a theme
sponsibility. This was very evident by town. During communistic rule in the that came through strongly every-
observing the manhole lids which were 1950s, a workforce was mobilized that where I traveled. Also, their hospital-
personalized for each town or city. One constructed a rock-walled channel cir- ity and zest for life is far and above
was even comical and provided a pho- cumventing the town on the north anything I have experienced in the
to opportunity for tourists. side. According to the current public United States. Therefore, I am already
works director, the channel has nev- planning on returning to both coun-
er overtopped and flooded the town. tries to further investigate their public
Each rock was hand placed and mor- works improvements and experience
tared in place. again their rich history.
In Prague and Bratislava, they have gone Paul Hindman is the APWA Colorado
state-of-the-art and constructed a flood Chapter Delegate and a past president of
wall system produced by a German the chapter. He is a past member of the
company. The flood wall is constructed national Awards Review and Congress Site
Manhole cover, Bratislava, Slovakia of aluminum panels and is stored in Selection Committees. He can be reached
nearby warehouses. As the Vltava and at (303) 455-6277 or phindman@udfcd.
As stated earlier, the purpose of my trip Danube Rivers rise, public works work- org.
to the Czech and Slovak Republics was ers remove the panels from storage and
to investigate their drainage and flood install them along the river walk.

February 2008 APWA Reporter 27

Waste management and public policy in the
Czech and Slovak Republics
Bill Bruce
Commissioner, Department of General Services
City of Albany, New York
2007 Jennings Randolph Fellow

Editor’s Note: Bill Bruce was the recipient of a 2007 Jennings percentage of vehicles and equipment that were of a very
Randolph Fellowship for an exchange program with the Slovak small size by American standards. However, many European
and Czech Republics. During his visit to the Slovak Public Works streets and public places are very old with narrow streets
Association and Czech Republic Public Works Association Joint and sidewalks, often hand-laid with small blocks of stone in
Conference in October 2007, he studied waste management and decorative patterns.
waste disposal legislation, regulation, and practices in both coun-
tries. He has submitted the following article reflecting his experi-
ences and will make a presentation on his findings at the 2008
APWA Congress in New Orleans.

Three APWA representatives and I started our tour of the

Czech and Slovak Republics by attending the annual joint
Czech and Slovak Public Works Associations conference,
held this year in Slovakia. We had an opportunity at the
conference to inspect equipment and vehicles on display
by European vendors. One immediate difference was the

Decorative sidewalks installed by hand, of small stone blocks, are

common in every city center.

Landfilling is still the final disposal option for most waste.

We saw the landfill outside the town of Trenčínské Teplice
where we attended the conference, and later the landfill for
Prague, capital of the Czech Republic. Both republics are still
heavily dependent on landfills. However, the per capita vol-
ume of waste generation in Europe is only half of what it
is in the U.S. Also, based on European Union (EU) regu-
lations, all member states have to reduce the landfilling
of biodegradable municipal waste, with reduction targets
Detectable Warning Plates for 2009 and 2016. During our tour of Bratislava, capital
of Slovakia, we were advised that they operate a waste-
When it comes to quality & safety, you’ll know right where we stand. to-energy facility, built just a year and a half ago. Waste-
to-energy plants in Europe are subject to stringent design
and operating standards, and are now more accepted by
the public and less controversial than here in the U.S.—
especially because waste is now identified as a renewable,
“Word on the street is Neenah” locally-produced energy source, in a Europe very conscious
of energy security issues as well as its dependence on for-

800-558-5075 eign energy. Other new technologies such as mechanical/

biological waste treatment, which we have not yet seen here in the U.S., are now operational in Europe.

28 APWA Reporter February 2008

ically regulate the delivery of water or electricity. Most waste
management is provided by what we would call authorities,
operating under rigorous state regulation. These authori-
ties all enjoy flow control and can plan and manage their
systems more effectively because of this fact. As a result of
EU legislation, major appliances, including computers and
electronics, have a disposal cost included in the purchase
price. These funds are used by the federal governments to
subsidize redemption centers for appliances and electronics,
operated at the local or regional level, ensuring maximum
recycling and keeping unwanted items out of landfills.

There is much we can learn from the more environmentally

protective legislation, regulation and practices being applied
in the European Union and its member states, whether your
responsibilities involve fleet management, fuel efficiency
and alternative fuels, green building design, recycling and
Metal waste cans are still prevalent because many people heat with waste management, pump efficiency in water and wastewa-
wood or coal and need to dispose the ashes.
ter systems, urban forestry, energy efficiency of public build-
In general, public policy on waste management in the EU ings and facilities, or “smart” transportation projects. With
and member states seems more advanced than here in the the increasing emphasis on climate change, public works
U.S. We are much more likely to rely on free market capi- officials will play a critical role as environmental protection
talism. Long-haul, out-of-state landfill disposal is becoming increasingly becomes a focus in public policy at the federal,
more common here in the eastern U.S. In Europe, waste state and local levels.
management is seen more as a critical resource management
Bill Bruce can be reached at (518) 432-1144 or
issue, and regulated more like an essential service, as we typ-

Bring your agency to peak performance and

productivity levels by attending the workshop for

Self Assessment
Using the Management
Practices Manual
A Tool for Improving Operations
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Join us at the following workshop location:

March 14, 2008 Encinitas, CA

If you are a public works director, manager, supervisor,

accreditation manager, or a municipal administrator
performing public works functions, this is the workshop
for you. Get your questions answered, evaluate your entire
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February 2008 APWA Reporter 29

Balancing CSO affordability while
maintaining existing water and
sewer infrastructure
Joseph Superneau, P.E., Executive Director, Springfield, MA Water and Sewer Commission, and Chair, APWA Water
Resources Management Committee; Robert Stoops, P.E., Chief Engineer, and Joshua Schimmel, Project Engineer,
Springfield, MA Water and Sewer Commission

Introduction transmission main were constructed in 1908. The Cobble

The Springfield Water and Sewer Commission (Commission) Mountain Dam and Reservoir were completed circa 1930.
is committed to improving the quality of life throughout Water flows from the treatment plant to the Provin Mountain
the Pioneer Valley by providing critical water and wastewa- storage facility where there are four 15-million-gallon con-
ter services in support of public health protection, environ- crete underground storage reservoirs. Tanks were constructed
mental stewardship and sustainable economic development. in 1909 and 1930, and two in the 1960s. Thirty-six miles of
Currently, about one-third of the sewer system in the City large transmission main carry water to the City of Springfield.
of Springfield flows to a Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) These transmission mains vary in age from 60 years to 100
system. The Commission is under its third Administrative years old. The distribution system consists of 580 miles of
Consent Order (ACO) from the U.S. Environmental Protec- piping dating back to the 1880s, with the majority of the pipe
tion Agency (EPA) to abate wet weather discharges from the installed from the 1930s to the 1960s. In this system, there
CSOs. This article summarizes the Commission’s significant are hundreds of miles of unlined cast iron water pipe, which
efforts to meet ACO requirements while maintaining ser- needs to be cleaned and lined or replaced.
vices, addressing the rate burdens of unfunded federal and
state regulatory initiatives, and the resulting economic im- Wastewater
pacts to a struggling community in western Massachusetts. The wastewater collection system in Springfield serves a
More importantly, it supports the necessity of achieving a population of about 260,000 and consists of approximate-
balance between regulatory compliance, CSO affordability ly 600 miles of sanitary, combined and interceptor sewers;
and sustainable infrastructure improvements for both water 12,000 manholes; and 30 sewage pumping stations (includ-
and wastewater systems. This balance can and must be at- ing seven flood control stations). Wastewater is conveyed
tained through a partnership approach between regulatory to the Springfield Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility
agencies and local water and wastewater utilities. (SRWTF). The SRWTF treats wastewater from the house-
holds, businesses, and industries within Springfield and
surrounding six member communities, including Agawam,
The Commission owns and maintains watershed land, East Longmeadow, Longmeadow, Ludlow, Wilbraham, and
dams, reservoirs, transmission mains, storage tanks, water West Springfield. The SRWTF is one of the largest facilities in
and wastewater treatment plants, pumping stations, and New England and provides treatment at an annual average
more than 1,200 miles of water and sewer mains. The Com- of 40 MGD.
mission recently completed a five-year $70 million capital
improvement program that focused on redundancy and reli- The Commission owns and is responsible for the 70-year-
ability through the replacement and repair of its aging infra- old flood control infrastructure that is directly connected to
structure while concurrently meeting the ACOs. What lies the combined wastewater collection system along the Con-
ahead is hundreds of millions of dollars in capital improve- necticut River. The flood control system includes seven large
ments to repair and maintain acceptable water and wastewa- flood control pumping stations, associated piping, valves,
ter service as well as meet CSO regulations. gates and appurtenances.

Drinking Water The Long Term Control Plan (LTCP)

In Massachusetts, the Commission supplies drinking water In March 2000 the Commission completed a draft CSO
to a population of approximately 250,000 in the commu- Long Term Control Plan and Environmental Impact Report
nities of Springfield, Ludlow, Agawam, East Longmeadow, (LTCP). Projects delineated in the LTCP were evaluated based
Longmeadow, Southwick and Westfield. The annual average on effectiveness of CSO reduction vs. cost. The goal was to
water use is about 36 million gallons per day (MGD). The pri- identify projects that were at the “knee of the CSO reduction
mary water sources are the Borden Brook and Cobble Moun- vs. cost curve.” At the conceptual level of planning, these
tain Reservoirs. The Borden Brook Reservoir, portions of the projects would provide the Commission with the most cost-
West Parish Filters Treatment Plant and many miles of large effective CSO control.

30 APWA Reporter February 2008

CSO control technologies were evaluated for each of three the abatement of the Mill River CSOs. The Commission pro-
rivers that receive CSO discharge—the Mill River, the Chi- ceeded to comply with the ACO schedule by rapidly mov-
copee River, and the Connecticut River. This effort resulted ing through the project design and bidding process. From
in a massing of CSO-related information under one umbrella. the perspective of the regulators, the pace of the response
Each of the CSOs could now be assessed in terms of how they to the ACO was good. Projects designed to abate CSOs were
functioned as a system vs. individually. Based on the exist- progressing. The Commission was content because the ACO
ing sewer system information and the skeletal flow metering included a specific project that was affordable (at $5.2 mil-
data gathered, a simple hydraulic model was developed to aid lion) and capable of being implemented.
in analyzing the effectiveness of the various CSO abatement
Aggressive deadlines specified in the ACO required a com-
strategies. The end result was an overall recommended plan
pressed design schedule. Additional information was gath-
for CSO abatement that resided at the “knee of the curve,”
ered through the design phase; however, because of the short
with an estimated total cost of $140 million. In accordance
schedule, the recommendations from the LTCP were the
with EPA requirements, the LTCP also included a chapter on
guiding principles for design and construction. As the proj-
affordability. The affordability analysis results showed that
ect moved through construction the Commission realized
Springfield ratepayers could only afford approximately 1/10
that although compliance with the ACO was maintained,
of the proposed CSO program cost.
there were some fundamental flaws with the approach. Evi-
CSO Abatement dence indicated that the LTCP was more of a planning tool
In November 2000, the Commission entered into negotia- than a guide for final design. Lack of time to thoroughly
tions with EPA and the Massachusetts Department of Envi- investigate existing infrastructure resulted in a litany of
ronmental Protection (DEP) to develop an affordable phased changed conditions and utility conflicts in the field.
CSO program. An ACO would define the initial phase of
Lessons Learned
work. The information provided in the LTCP was used as
Given the condensed project schedule, Commission staff
the basis for the specific projects associated with the ACO.
and the consulting engineers worked together throughout
The initial ACO identified Interceptor Relief and Storage for

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February 2008 APWA Reporter 31

construction to produce a functional CSO project. Schedule tanks or an equivalent project. The storage project was origi-
drove the Mill River Project to the detriment of proper plan- nally selected because the LTCP estimated optimum CSO
ning and design. Field changes during construction were the discharge reduction in relation to the capital cost.
norm and not the exception. Upon completion, the project
In moving from the conceptual plan of a LTCP to the reality
was considered a success by the regulators and the Commis-
of final design, the engineer needs to provide a more in-
sion because deadlines were met, the costs contained and
volved study and investigation of existing conditions, in ad-
the annual CSOs to the Mill River were reduced to meet the
dition to analyses of various control strategies and options,
regulatory requirements.
prior to final design. It is a serious mistake for regulators and
The project team performed a post-project review to look utilities to apply the conceptual information provided in a
at how to reduce change orders and address other contract LTCP as the basis for a final design without proper field veri-
changes. The outstanding factor was scheduling adequate fication. To do so potentially results in spending millions
time for the engineer to completely field verify and evaluate of dollars on a project that may not perform or accomplish
all critical pipe and CSO regulators, and to perform detailed what was intended.
flow monitoring to validate the design criteria. To rush forth
The preliminary design for the Chicopee River CSO Project
to meet an artificial schedule was counterproductive and re-
included 21 new flow monitoring locations for this storm-
sulted in multiple change orders.
water basin, inspection and measurement of every regulator,
Moving Forward and the inspection and assessment of all sewer pipes. Be-
The next focus was the Chicopee River CSO project and cause of this level of effort, it became evident that the flow
Commission staff negotiated an ACO with the regulatory requirements significantly changed from the minimal flow
agencies. The ACO included specific projects from the LTCP monitoring performed at the planning stage (13 flow meters
and provided sufficient time for adequate field investiga- citywide) to the new monitoring program.
tion, flow monitoring and design. The final ACO specified
The new hydraulic model indicated that the predicted stor-
the design and construction of a series of three CSO storage
age tanks, based on the preliminary data from the LTCP,
were incorrect in number and undersized. Due to the in-
crease in size and number of storage tanks predicted by the
updated model, additional knowledge of subsurface condi-
 ½ tions, and identification of many utility conflicts, the esti-
mated construction cost jumped from $14 million to almost
$50 million. This cost did not include the annual operating
and maintenance cost for the storage tanks, which would
have been substantial.

Several alternative approaches were quickly identified that

served the dual purpose of improvements to the existing in-
frastructure while controlling CSOs. A hybrid project was
developed that included targeted separation, new sanitary
sewer, limited storage, and pumping station improvements.
The new project also addressed infrastructure upgrades; such
as replacement of deteriorated sewer and drain pipes, ap-
purtenances, creating added pipe capacity and pump station
ÞO>FK>DBOLAR@QP improvements that the Commission would have ultimately
ÞKSFOLKJBKQ>I completed regardless of an ACO.
The alternative approach would clearly provide a tremen-

dous benefit to our ratepayers. The remaining hurdle was
Þ >KELIBO>JBP® to demonstrate to EPA and DEP that this approach achieved
Made in the USA 1883-2008 †ˆˆ’„€„’‚„ƒ LSBOP the original goals for CSO control set forth in the ACO. The
ÞRPQLJ LDLLSBOP Commission used the design level hydraulic model to dem-
ÞBQB@Q>?IB>OKFKD onstrate project equality with respect to the estimated an-
I>QBP nual CSO overflows. With the model results in hand, dem-
onstrating the proposed change went smoothly because the
Commission had continually maintained contact with the
local regulatory staff throughout the process.

32 APWA Reporter February 2008

The goal should be to negotiate an ACO that did not identi- Since that estimate was prepared, the Mill River Project has
fy specific projects, but rather identified achievable goals for been completed within budget. The Chicopee River Project
CSO control based on overall system needs. The flexibility is under construction with an estimated project cost of $30
to consider cost benefit and affordability should be factored million. The Washburn Street CSO Project, which resulted
into this process. from structural failure of a CSO regulator, was completed
for approximately $8 million and the Clinton Street Project
EPA Affordability Guidance Definition was replaced with a sewer separation project due to escalat-
EPA has established affordability guidance to assess the eco- ing costs. The Connecticut River Phase I Project cost is now
nomic burden of CSO abatement in terms of annual cost estimated at $15 million.
and the long-term impacts upon resi-
dents and businesses. EPA acknowledg-
es that the determination of substan-
tial impact on the wider community
depends on both the cost of pollution
control and the general financial and
economic health of the community.

One of the most critical indicators of

economic health is measured by the
median household income. The me-

Awards Program 2008

dian household income for Springfield
residents has hovered around $30,000
per year (2005 dollars). This is almost
half of the state median of $57,000
(2005 dollars). The EPA substantial im-
pact preliminary screener looks at the
project cost to achieve policy compli-
ance as a percent of median household
income. For the City of Springfield,
this value has been estimated to be ap-
proximately 1.5% through the updated
Preliminary CSO Controls. This value
indicates that the economic burden for
Springfield is already excessive. And,
the Commission’s water and wastewa-
APWA’s Awards Program recognizes individuals, groups and
ter systems still require hundreds of chapters for their outstanding contributions to the profession of
millions of dollars for capital improve- public works. Some of the awards presented include Distinguished
ments over the next twenty years. Service, Young Leader, Public Works Project of the Year, and
During the preparation of the LTCP, Top Ten Public Works Leader of the Year, to name just a few.
costs for the Mill River, Chicopee River
and Connecticut River CSO abatement Each award is listed on the APWA website. Criteria and
programs were estimated at $6.1 mil- nomination forms for the 2008 Awards Program
lion, $15.9 million and $117.6 mil-
are now available online.
lion, respectively. At that time, the
LTCP affordability analysis prepared by
Metcalf & Eddy, Inc. concluded that,
“Springfield will incur widespread so- DON’T FORGET!
cial and economic impact as the re-
sult of implementing preliminary CSO
Nominations are due March 3, 2008!
controls.” The preliminary CSO costs
for the Mill River, Chicopee River and
the Phase I Connecticut River Projects
were estimated at $35 million through
the year 2011. Nominate Your Award-Winners Today!
February 2008 APWA Reporter 33
What was estimated to cost $35 million in year 2000 and are many factors to consider when prioritizing the financial
was determined to exceed the affordability thresholds and needs of an organization, including:
cause widespread social and economic impact, will actually
• The costs of essential services and functions within the
cost approximately $60 million. And it does not end there.
organization and the inflation related to those costs.
The balance of the proposed CSO work is now estimated at
more than $180 million. Since 2000, Springfield’s actual me- • The capital replacement/improvement costs needed to
dian household income has decreased to less than $30,000 provide sustainable infrastructure into the future.
per year. Given the tenuous economic plight of Springfield
residents and businesses, the increased burden of the Up- • The added costs of regulatory compliance.
dated Preliminary CSO Control projects alone presents an
• The future needs to meet population changes or chang-
unreasonable impact to the community.
es in demand.
What does affordability really mean to our • The ability and willingness of the users to pay for the
customers? services.
In 2005 Springfield’s median household annual income was
$29,922, down 1.6% from 2000. A household with a gross Financial Reality for a Water and Sewer System
income of $30,000, after payroll deductions of federal and By 2010 the Commission will have borrowed $150 million
state taxes, health insurance, retirement and other manda- in the previous decade: $70 million for much-needed wa-
tory deductions, brings home a net income of about $20,000. ter and sewer infrastructure repairs and $80 million for CSO
To the median-income family, this means budgeting about work. There remains a looming amount of $180 million
$10,000 for mortgage or rent payments; $5,000 must be needed to complete the identified CSO projects in the Draft
budgeted for heat, electricity and telephone payments, and LTCP. Also on the radar screen is another $100 million for
the remaining $5,000 for food. There is no money for other sewer repairs, based on a detailed assessment of the sewers in
expenses such as clothing, transportation, cable television, one section of the city. The 70-year-old flood control pump-
pets, entertainment, medical care co-payments, or water and ing stations require upgrades to the tune of an estimated
sewer bills. $10-15 million.

How do we justify asking people to make real-life choices be- On the drinking water side, major replacement of a 100-year-
tween heat, food, medicine, and reducing CSOs to a river they old water storage tank and repairs and replacement of miles
cannot swim in? Springfield is a poor city where the crime of large transmission pipe are being evaluated. These wa-
rate has escalated, public education needs have increased, ter projects could easily reach $50 million over the next
and medical issues have worsened. Springfield ranked sixth 10 years. And, the Commission is considering a new water
worst in the nation for the percentage of its children living treatment plant at Ludlow Reservoir to meet future water
in poverty in 2006, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s demands at a cost of $25 million.
American Community Survey. This climate further hinders
The Commission’s FY 2008 annual operating budget is ap-
support for rate increases and funding of CSO projects with
proximately $50 million, of which about 9% is for debt ser-
little or no benefit to the community.
vice. In 2010 the annual budget is expected to increase to
Cost/Benefit $57 million, with an estimated debt service rate equaling
Money is a critical factor when developing and implement- about 16% of the total. If the Commission proceeds down
ing any environmental project and lines must be drawn the road to borrow another $400 million over the next 10
somewhere. If a project costs $10 million to reach a 95% years, the annual debt service would increase about $32 mil-
solution and $20 million to reach a 99% solution, with min- lion with an additional debt service reserve of $72 million
imum environmental benefit gained, is this sound public required to satisfy bond covenants. The debt service would
investment? It should be the obligation of both the envi- account for approximately 50% of the operating budget.
ronmental regulator and the public works official to work Such numbers would be staggering to the City and would
together and find this line. For every dollar spent on limited cause financial and political chaos resulting in rigor mortis
environmental gain there is one less dollar to invest in other for the Commission.
projects that provide greater environmental benefits.
In the last four years, four unexpected projects have devel-
What does affordability mean for the oped which cost over $12 million to repair. The largest proj-
Commission? ect was an 8-foot-diameter brick sewer collapse (circa 1880)
The Commission is required to meet various laws and regu- which resulted in an $8 million repair. While writing this
lations promulgated by the state and federal governments. article, another sinkhole problem developed around a ma-
All of these laws and regulations have costs associated with jor water transmission main gate chamber and the prelimi-
compliance. Realistically looking at fiscal projections, there nary estimate is $4 million to repair. This major transmis-

34 APWA Reporter February 2008

sion main may need to be removed from service pending • Fecal loading from the upstream non-point source
the repair. These types of unexpected emergency repairs will runoff and stormwater significantly exceed those
continue to plague the Commission considering the age of from CSOs.
the system.
• After Phase I CSO controls are implemented, water qual-
Springfield’s case is not unusual. It represents a community ity swimming criteria exceedences during wet weather
that has an aging infrastructure, which has seen continual would reduce only by less than four hours following a
underinvestment in maintenance and upgrades to the water three-month storm.
and sewer systems. The systems now require major capital
• Reducing CSO loads would have relatively small effect
repairs and improvements. When considering the rate im-
on overall river quality.
pacts over the next 10 to 20 years, meeting the repair and re-
placement needs must be a top priority and the Commission • If all CSOs were eliminated, water quality goals would
must always have sufficient funds to repair the unforeseen. not be achieved during the one-year storm event.

If the Commission were to spend $800 million to eliminate

all CSOs, the river would still not meet water quality stan-
dards because of other point and non-point source contri-
butions and upstream pollutant loadings. Common sense
indicates the need to reduce and eventually eliminate sew-
age from entering the river. However, it is important to bal-
ance the level of spending as it relates to the environmental
benefit that will be achieved. Projects with little or no Envi-
ronmental Yield cannot be undertaken at the expense of all
other necessary sewer, wastewater and water infrastructure
improvements. A community cannot continue to spend
money beyond the point of diminishing returns, simply to
meet absolute regulatory compliance. There should be a vi-
able, continuous reevaluation of where to best spend the
limited resources to realize the best environmental benefit
Collapse of an 8-foot-diameter brick sewer, circa 1880, resulted in the for our citizens. By continuously asking the Environmen-
reconstruction of the street, all underground utilities and the CSO tal Yield question, the prudent investment of public funds
regulating chambers at a cost of $8 million.
and improvements to environmental protection will be op-
timized and the benefits tremendous.
Environmental Yield
Another significant issue that cannot be overlooked is Envi- An example would be whether to invest in the replacement
ronmental Yield. The question that should be asked contin- or repair of a critical pump station or force main or to con-
uously by both the public works official and environmental trol a CSO. If the pump station or force main failed, raw sew-
regulator is, “If this project is developed and constructed, age would flow into the river 24 hours per day for months
and the program is implemented, what will be the mean- on end. If the CSO was not controlled, discharges of diluted
ingful benefits to the environment?” If the question can- sewage would come and go in wet weather. It is clear that
not be answered with a positive environmental result or the failure of the critical infrastructure would have greater envi-
potential benefits are negligible, it is probably not a good ronmental consequences and a higher Environmental Yield.
investment of public dollars. Too many projects in the past Environmental regulators must recognize this point as they
have taken on lives of their own without defining the Envi- work to advance CSO controls.
ronmental Yield. Conclusions
The Commission recognized the importance and regional To quote Winston Churchill, “If you have an important
nature of Environmental Yield for the Connecticut River. In point to make, don’t try to be subtle or clever. Use a pile
conjunction with the Cities of Holyoke, Chicopee, and the driver. Hit the point once. Then come back and hit it again.
Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, a study was prepared Then hit it a third time—a tremendous whack.” The point
to develop a regional water quality model of the Connecti- to be driven home is simple—utilities cannot possibly com-
cut River. The model simulated approximately 50 CSOs, ply with all the existing regulations together with those
stormwater discharges and upstream river conditions from being promulgated and maintain existing water and sewer
Holyoke to the Connecticut border. A brief synopsis of mod- infrastructure. Some of the rules require substantial sums of
el results includes: money to enact and in the end, provide marginal benefit.

February 2008 APWA Reporter 35

In addition, utilities are spending money to comply with tors to define where limited resources can best be used for
rules that are in conflict with other rules. In some cases, one the public benefit. Projects and programs should follow a
regulator may be applying pressure for compliance, which is prioritization process that includes a cost/benefit analysis
in conflict with another regulator’s requirements. and takes into account the overall needs of the Commis-
sion. Public funds must be used for meaningful purposes
The best solutions for local environmental problems are
and have measurable public benefits consistent with the
site-specific. Several lessons learned during Springfield’s CSO
amount of funds expended.
abatement program include:
The Commission cannot continue to borrow money for
• Conceptual information collected as part of the devel-
capital projects to meet regulatory requirements and ignore
opment of a LTCP is limited and cannot be used directly
the needed repairs to the infrastructure. That is a formula for
for design and implementation of specific projects.
system-wide failure and is irresponsible to our ratepayers.
• The best solutions to environmental problems require Infrastructure system failures result in significant negative
significant research, detailed evaluations, modeling and impacts to the community and individuals. The existing in-
in-depth investigation prior to implementation. frastructure system needs to be maintained in balance with
meeting regulations.
• Regulatory compliance and ACOs should allow for flexi-
bility in implementation. After the research, evaluations Both public works officials and environmental regulators
and modeling are conducted, the engineering solutions have a tremendous stake in improving the environment
inevitably change for the better. and water quality for the next generation. The challenge
is to meet these goals because there is competition with
• The quality of the river will not significantly improve other state and national programs for the same dollars. One
if all CSOs are eliminated. Environmental Yield should way to meet the challenge and reach the goal is working
be the focus. There is a limited pool of funds available together. Just think of a coalition of public works officials
for competing needs and water and wastewater services and environmental regulators jointly addressing Congress
must be maintained through the regulatory implemen- in support of new funding mechanisms and regulations
tation process. that make sense while protecting the environment. If this
• Infrastructure repairs and improvements must be imple- sounds far-fetched, think it through. The foundation of the
mented regardless of the process of meeting or imple- public works profession is to build infrastructure that pro-
menting new regulations. tects the public and the environment. The foundation of an
environmental regulator is to ensure that laws and regula-
In the future, to implement the lessons learned, utilities tions adopted by elected officials are carried out to protect
must conduct intelligent, ongoing discussions with regula- the environment. There is not a conflict between these two
agendas. A new paradigm is re-
quired by both parties to realize
that working together as a team
provides a foundation for water
quality improvements across
the nation that noticeably pro-
gresses in the coming decades.

Joseph Superneau is the Chair of

APWA’s Water Resources Man-
agement Committee; he can be
reached at (413) 787-6256 x-152
or joe.superneau@waterandsewer.
org; Robert Stoops can be reached
at (413) 787-6256 x-188 or bob.; and
Joshua Schimmel can be reached
at (413) 787-6256 x-139 or josh.

36 APWA Reporter February 2008

From rooftops to rivers: green infrastructure
yields economic and environmental benefits
Nancy Stoner, Director, Clean Water Project, Natural Resources Defense Council, Washing-
ton, D.C.; Alexandra Dapolito Dunn, Esq., Assistant Dean of Environmental Law Programs,
Pace University School of Law, White Plains, New York

ost urban and suburban waterways in the United need, as evidenced by its recent D- grade assessed by the
States are polluted, and wet weather impacts are a American Society of Civil Engineers.2 As miles and miles of
huge part of the problem. While boating or other underground pipes age they become more likely to fail,3 at
non-contact recreation may be possible, many ur- the same time that they are taxed further due to increasing
ban and suburban streams, lakes or coastal waters are often population and development. For example, at our current
unsafe for swimming or other direct contact after it rains. rate of investment, EPA has projected that sewage pollution
Rainfall carries trash, toxins and bacteria into waterways, in- will be as high in 2025 as it was in 1968—before the passage
creasing the risk of illness for swimmers and making these of the Clean Water Act—that is, when Lake Erie was declared
waters unhealthy for fish, amphibians and birds. If these dead and the Cuyahoga River was on fire.4
same urban rivers, lakes and coastal waters are clean, they
Add to this mix the projected impacts of global warming on
can become a tremendous community resource, providing
water resources and shorelines. Global warming is anticipat-
fishing, swimming and other recreational opportunities as
ed to have adverse effects on available freshwater resourc-
well as a higher quality source of drinking water for cities
es. For example, the Natural Resources Defense Council’s
and suburbs. However, if polluted, they can be a potential
(NRDC’s) recent report, In Hot Water, projects that global
health hazard as well as an eyesore, lowering property values
warming will decrease snowpack in the American West, re-
and detracting from community revitalization efforts.
duce water supplies, increase the magnitude and frequency
As rain comes into contact with streets, parking lots and of floods and droughts, and degrade aquatic habitat by re-
rooftops, an environmental chain reaction occurs. This rain ducing stream flows and increasing the temperature of wa-
picks up oil, grease and toxins, as well as pathogens, nu- terways.5 EPA reports that while data are inconclusive, some
trients and other pollutants, and deposits them into lakes, models predict that global warming will increase the fre-
streams and coastal waters. The high-volume, high-velocity quency of Combined Sewer Overflows by up to 12 percent,
flows cause additional adverse environmental consequenc- as well as the volume and velocity of stormwater flows.6 EPA
es, including flooding, streambank scouring, riparian habi- also notes that the costs of adapting existing CSO mitigation
tat loss, flashy streams, increased stream temperatures, and, plans to manage the long-term risks associated with climate
because the rainwater cannot soak into the ground, depleted change could significantly increase funding requirements,
groundwater resources. These problems will only continue exacerbating what is known as the “infrastructure gap”—
to grow as our nation’s population increases and, even more the difference between available funding and the actually
importantly, as development continues to spread across the needed funding.7
landscape—at twice the rate of population growth.

These problematic impacts are exacerbated in the over 770 2
cities in the United States served by combined wastewater
U.S. EPA, The Clean Water and Drinking Water Infrastructure Gap Analysis,
and stormwater pipes, as these peak wet weather flows cause EPA-816-R-02-020 (Sept. 2002) (projects that 47% of sewer pipes will be in
Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs). The United States Envi- poor, very poor, or life-elapsed condition by 2020, up from 10% in 1980 and
23% in 2000).
ronmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) 2004 Report to Con-
gress on sewer overflows estimated the volume of CSO dis- 4
U.S. EPA, The Clean Water and Drinking Water Infrastructure Gap Analysis,
charged nationwide at 850 billion gallons per year.1 Despite EPA-816-R-02-020 (Sept. 2002).

diligent efforts by cities to mitigate the impacts of CSOs, 5

In Hot Water, pp. 4-16.
these efforts can be hindered overall by the failing condi-
tion of the nation’s wastewater infrastructure. This critical 6
“A Screening Assessment of the Potential Impacts of Climate Change on
system of underground pipes and conveyances is in dire Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Mitigation in the Great Lakes and New
England Regions’’ (EPA/600/R-07/033A); available at
Report to Congress, Impacts of CSOs and SSOs, August 2004, EPA
833-R-04-001 at ES-5; Report available at
Id. at 26.

February 2008 APWA Reporter 37

With global warming, failing infrastructure and a land de- NRDC’s 2006 report, Rooftops to Rivers, reported on the
velopment rate of twice that of population growth, our na- green infrastructure strategies already employed by forward-
tion faces a water quality problem that is literally begging thinking communities that are stretching wastewater infra-
for attention, investment and innovation. Continuing to structure investments to achieve more by focusing on multi-
use the approaches of the past to deal with these pollution benefit approaches, by leveraging private as well as public
sources is likely to be both costly and largely unsuccessful. investment, and by weaving green infrastructure controls
Public works managers are challenged to change tradition- into a broad range of ongoing municipal activities, such as
al ways of thinking. It is time to revisit the long-embraced repair and rehabilitation of roads. And both the clean wa-
philosophy that the best course is to move stormwater as terways themselves and the green infrastructure that keeps
rapidly as possible into pipes—recognizing that in many them clean increase property values, revitalize blighted
cases this volume goes untreated into waterways or worse, neighborhoods, enhance street life and community aesthet-
causing sewage pipes to exceed capacity and overflow. Fortu- ics, and provide free recreation.8
nately there are alternatives, and one is catching on in pro-
In 2007, NRDC, EPA, the Low Impact Development Cen-
gressive cities and towns across the United States. It is called
ter, the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, the
green infrastructure, which does not just mean “green” as
Association of State and Interstate Water Pollution Control
in environmentally sound, but instead green as the color of
Administrators, and a whole host of other organizations, in-
the vegetation that it relies upon as its principal wastewater
cluding the American Public Works Association, joined to-
treatment mechanism. The term “green infrastructure” has
gether to promote use of green infrastructure in stormwater
many definitions because it is used on a variety of scales—
and sewer overflow control programs. Since that time, EPA
watershed or subwatershed, neighborhood, or site. In this
has compiled and developed a number of green infrastruc-
article it applies to natural systems or designed or engineered
ture resources that offer information and guidance to com-
systems that use soil and vegetation to mimic natural pro-
munities nationwide.9 EPA also has named a green infra-
cesses to protect and enhance environmental quality and
structure coordinator at EPA Headquarters in Washington,
provide utility services.
D.C., and in each of the ten Regions, making it even easier
Green infrastructure in cities, where stormwater-induced for cities to gain information and guidance about green in-
pollution is most severe, includes green roofs, trees and tree frastructure projects.10
boxes, rain gardens, vegetated swales, pocket wetlands, in-
Active green infrastructure programs in several U.S. cities,
filtration planters and vegetated median strips—really any-
including Chicago, Portland and Seattle, have yielded early
where where soil and vegetation can be worked into the ur-
and significant success. Green infrastructure offers the ad-
ban landscape. Green infrastructure is often accompanied
vantage of managing rain where it falls, often preventing it
by other decentralized storage and infiltration approaches,
from reaching the sewer system. Less water in the sewer sys-
including the use of permeable pavement and rain barrels
tem means less pollution discharged from CSOs or separate
and cisterns to capture and reuse rainfall for watering plants
stormwater sewers and lower treatment costs at wastewater
or flushing toilets. All of these have the benefit of keep-
treatment plants. Cost savings have also been gained from
ing rainwater out of the combined system so that it does
either avoiding the addition of new infrastructure or dimin-
not cause sewage overflows, allowing it to be absorbed and
ishing the size and scope of capacity improvements.
cleansed by soil and vegetation, and then reused or allowed
to flow back into groundwater or surface water resources. An $8 million subsidized downspout disconnection pro-
gram in Portland has saved $250 million in infrastructure
Green infrastructure benefits include improved water qual-
improvements by diverting one billion gallons of rain annu-
ity, expanded wildlife habitat, enhanced drinking water
ally from the combined sewer system and allowing the rain
supplies, protected open space and parks, energy savings,
to soak into the ground. Seattle’s first Street Edge Alternative
smog reduction, decreased flooding, improved aesthetics
(SEA) pilot project has retained 99 percent of the rain that
and higher property values. Green infrastructure often saves
has fallen during the five years of monitoring and prevented
taxpayers money as well by not only reducing sewage and
it from being discharged to sensitive receiving waters that
stormwater pollution, but also by minimizing the amount
are home to salmon.
of water that needs to be conveyed to centralized treatment
facilities, thereby making those facilities more cost-effective
to operate. Use of green infrastructure approaches in addi- 8
NRDC, Rooftops to Rivers: Green Strategies for Controlling Stormwater and
tion to modernization of aging, decaying treatment plants, Combined Sewer Overflows (June 2006).
collection systems and distribution systems can forestall the
need for even more costly approaches and investments in
the future. 10

38 APWA Reporter February 2008

The benefits of introducing green infrastructure are not con- ers, engineers, construction workers, maintenance workers
fined to water quality. Green infrastructure filters airborne and a variety of small businesses engaged in designing and
pollutants, helps to offset urban heat island effects, and building green roofs, rain gardens, tree boxes and other types
can reduce the heating and cooling demands of buildings. of green infrastructure.11 Green infrastructure approaches
Temperatures above Chicago’s City Hall green roof average can achieve cleaner bodies of water, a greener environment
10-15°F lower than a nearby black tar roof, with the differ- and better quality of life.
ence being as much as 50°F in August. The associated energy
The cities that have shown innovation adopting green
savings for the building are estimated to be $3,600 annually.
practices are at the forefront of the policy and institutional
And one benefit of green infrastructure is often a critical fac-
changes necessary to encourage new green programs. In
tor for thriving and sustainable communities: the aesthetic
many cities, however, green infrastructure remains a garnish,
benefits gained from trees and vegetation.
not the meal. So, what can we do to eliminate obstacles—
A further good example of green infrastructure practices is real or perceived—to green infrastructure solutions?
the restoration of highly urbanized areas by using existing
First, we need to refine and make readily accessible user-
wetlands for stormwater management, as well as creating
friendly models to quantify effectiveness of green infrastruc-
new wetlands for the same purpose. In the Rouge River area
ture solutions and its life-cycle cost, and tools for measuring
of Michigan, the Inkster Wetlands demonstration project
economic and environmental benefits realized from the use
uses 14 acres of wetlands (approximately nine of which are
of green infrastructure. Measurement of small-scale projects
constructed) adjacent to the river to naturally treat storm-
can be done with general ease. For example, to address lo-
water before it enters the river. Prior to the project, “hard
calized flooding caused by runoff from one alley, the City
infrastructure” discharge pipes routed stormwater past the
of Chicago removed the asphalt from the 630-foot-long,
existing wetlands and directly to the river; however, the dem-
16-foot-wide area and replaced it with a permeable paving
onstration project rerouted stormwater through the existing
system. The City then measured that, instead of generating
wetlands which were supplemented with new, constructed
stormwater runoff, the alley will infiltrate and retain the vol-
wetlands. The project was completed in 1997 at a cost of
ume of a three-inch, one-hour rain event. The permeable
$465,000. The results of a subsequent five-year monitoring
pavement requires little maintenance and has a life expec-
study evaluated the effectiveness of the project at improv-
tancy of 25 to 35 years. In other areas of the country, studies
ing the quality of the stormwater runoff and found that in
in Maryland and Illinois show that new residential develop-
addition to dampening stormwater flows, the wetlands also
ments using conservation design approaches saved $3,500
reduced concentrations of total suspended solids by 80 per-
to $4,500 per lot (quarter- to half-acre lots) when compared
cent, total phosphorus by 70 percent, and both oxygen de-
to new developments with conventional stormwater con-
pleting substances (BOD) and heavy metals by 60 percent.
trols. These developments were conceived and designed to
These cities that have shown innovation adopting green reduce and manage stormwater runoff by preserving natural
practices have also been at the forefront of the policy and vegetation and landscaping, reducing overall site impervi-
institutional changes necessary to encourage new programs. ousness and installing green stormwater controls. Cost sav-
Public funding has been critical to the adoption and ac- ings for these developments resulted from less conventional
ceptance of green infrastructure. Public financing has been stormwater infrastructure and paving and lower site prepa-
used directly to install pilot projects and subsidize commu- ration costs. Importantly, in addition to lowering costs, each
nity programs and provide grant money for private efforts. of the sites discharges less stormwater than conventional de-
Chicago’s Department of the Environment announced that velopments. Adding to the cost savings, developments uti-
it would provide twenty $5,000 grants in 2006 for small- lizing green infrastructure normally yield more lots for sale
scale commercial and residential green roofs and received by eliminating land-consuming conventional stormwater
123 applications. Policy changes have required that green controls, and lots in green developments generally have a
infrastructure be the first option for new development and higher sale price because of the premium that buyers place
offered financial incentives for green infrastructure retrofits. on vegetation and conservation development. Methods for
Several cities have revised their stormwater regulations to predicting the effectiveness of large-scale or large-area green
place an emphasis on onsite retention and treatment and infrastructure projects prove more challenging and are still
state a preference for green infrastructure approaches. Cities evolving, but absolutely exist today. For example, researchers
have also structured their utility fees to provide a fee dis- at the University of California at Davis have estimated that
count when green controls are installed. for every 1,000 deciduous trees in California’s Central Valley,
stormwater runoff is reduced nearly one million gallons—a
Another emerging advantage of green infrastructure is its
link with the green jobs movement. Where it is being ap- 11 (projects creation of 50,000
plied, green infrastructure creates jobs for architects, design- new jobs from green infrastructure initiative)

February 2008 APWA Reporter 39

value of almost $7,000. EPA, in fact, now has gathered in a Third, the role of regulatory requirements must be ex-
single location a variety of accepted predictive models and plored—both in terms of how they facilitate and also hinder
calculators for green infrastructure, putting these tools in the use of green infrastructure. In the category of facilitation,
the hands of city managers and planners nationwide and research shows that a common driver among many cities us-
helping to debunk the myth that the effectiveness of green ing green infrastructure is, in fact, the need to assure compli-
solutions cannot be measured.12 ance with regulatory requirements. For example, a catalyst
for Portland, Oregon’s active green infrastructure program
Second, we need to identify—and take proactive steps to
is a need to satisfy a number of environmental regulatory
create—sources of federal, state and local funding for green
requirements, including limitations on Combined Sewer
infrastructure projects. The billions of dollars necessary to
Overflows, discharges into groundwaters used as drinking
mitigate water pollution simply and absolutely cannot be
water supplies, and total maximum daily load (TMDL) al-
found at the local level alone. Experience shows that when
public financing is on the table, entities will pick up the
green infrastructure ball and run with it. As an example However, these same regulatory requirements have shown
(and as previously mentioned), in 2006 Chicago’s Depart- themselves to hinder opportunities for creativity and will-
ment of the Environment announced that it would provide ingness on the part of municipal decision makers to actively
twenty $5,000 grants for small-scale commercial and resi- promote and introduce green infrastructure. For example,
dential green roofs—and received 123 applications. EPA re- models have shown that trees with mature canopies can ab-
cently cataloged a variety of federal programs where fund- sorb the first half-inch of rainfall—but trees can’t be planted
ing for green infrastructure projects may be available.13 with mature canopies. In contrast, a pipe can capture water
Meaningful funding for such projects at the state and local as soon as it is installed and online. Because our regulatory
levels remains generally elusive, but is starting to become and enforcement system revolves around compliance and
more common.14 immediate results, and because green solutions can take time
to come into their own, green infrastructure can be snubbed
There are a variety of other ways to create funding for green
in favor of a tried-and-true hard infrastructure solution that
solutions. These include the creation of stormwater utili-
can produce measurable results to regulators. For example,
ties, similar in function to water and wastewater utilities,
many cities are reluctant to use green infrastructure as part
which then allow for the assessment and collection of user
of their CSO remediation programs because enforcement of-
fees dedicated to a stormwater management program. The
ficials generally prefer to see water quality benefit realized
dedicated funds can then be applied in part to green infra-
expressed in traditional terms, such as percent capture. Per-
structure solutions or they can include incentives to encour-
cent capture through green solutions is seen as unreliable—
age voluntary use of green infrastructure. For example, Port-
and thus, possibly less enforceable. We need to ensure that
land’s River Rewards program provides a credit of up to 35
green infrastructure projects become an acceptable alterna-
percent of the standard stormwater fee for properties that
tive to hard infrastructure solutions in federal, state and lo-
retain stormwater onsite. Another option is dedicating a cer-
cal permitting and enforcement contexts—even if they may
tain portion of collected local tax revenues to a stormwa-
take more time to become fully effective. For example, a tree
ter fund, thereby removing stormwater management from
can take 20 years or more to develop a full canopy that will
volatile and competitive general revenue funding at the lo-
maximize its stormwater retention and other environmental
cal level. These dedicated stormwater funding sources could
benefits, which makes regulators reluctant to include them in
identify a preference for green infrastructure or establish a
long-term control plans for Combined Sewer Overflows; but
funding scale based upon the relative use of green manage-
it can take almost as long to design and build underground
ment techniques. Frankly, the organizational structures and
storage tunnels to retain wet weather flows, and those tun-
possibilities are many—but they have to be entertained and
nels provide no benefits until they are completed. At least
seriously considered, and existing revenue collection mech-
trees provide some stormwater retention, shade, property
anisms may need to be abolished or changed. And while
enhancement, air quality benefits and aesthetics while they
change can be hard, it is far from impossible—especially
are growing. Regulatory and enforcement officials should
when the environment stands to benefit.
focus on the big picture and ensure that the remedies they
seek are the most beneficial over the long haul.
Many stormwater regulations focus on peak flow rate con-
trol and flood control, and not on retention of stormwater
13 and recharge of groundwater resources. Revision of these
regulations to require minimizing and reducing impervi-
ous surfaces, protecting existing vegetation, maintaining

40 APWA Reporter February 2008

pre-development runoff volume and infiltration rates, and provements when a street is already likely to be torn up and
providing water quality improvements can encourage green construction crews are onsite.
infrastructure because it can meet these objectives. New Jer-
Fourth, we need to increase the public’s and policy makers’
sey’s stormwater management standards require 300-foot
awareness and acceptance of green infrastructure options.
riparian buffers and stipulate a preference for non-structural
Although green infrastructure is in many cases less costly
best management practices (BMPs). These standards also in-
than traditional methods of stormwater and sewer overflow
stitute water quantity as well as quality regulations. The wa-
control, it often is easier to continue the habit of investing
ter quantity standards require no change in groundwater re-
in existing conventional controls rather than trying an alter-
charge volume following construction and that infiltration
native approach. It is incumbent on local decision makers,
be used to maintain pre-development runoff volumes and
leaders and citizens to promote and publicize cleaner, more
peak flow rates. Any increase in runoff volume must be off-
environmentally attractive methods of reducing the water
set by a decrease in post-construction peak flow rate. Water
pollution that reaches their communities. Green infrastruc-
quality standards require a reduction in stormwater nutrient
ture presents an opportunity for community outreach and
loads to the “maximum extent feasible” and total suspended
education. Downspout disconnections, rain barrels, rain
solids reductions of 80 percent. If the receiving water body
gardens and green roofs may individually manage a rela-
is a high-quality water, the required total suspended solids
tively small volume of stormwater, but collectively can have
reduction is 95 percent.
a significant impact. Green infrastructure can be introduced
Further, existing local zoning requirements and building into a community one lot or one neighborhood at a time.
codes often inadvertently discourage the use of green infra-
A commonality among cities that have incorporated green
structure. Provisions requiring downspouts to be connected
infrastructure is a commitment from city personnel. Whether
to the stormwater collection system prohibit disconnection
elected officials or professional staff, these city leaders have
programs and the use of green space for treatment of rooftop
recognized the benefits of green infrastructure and have suc-
runoff. Mandatory street widths and building setbacks can
cessfully communicated its value to the public. These cities
unnecessarily increase imperviousness. Stormwater treat-
have also been innovative with their regulations and envi-
ment requirements that favor centralized collection and
ronmental policies, looking for existing and alternative av-
treatment and prescribe treatment options offer little oppor-
enues to encourage adoption of new stormwater and CSO
tunity or incentive to use green infrastructure. Jurisdictions
control strategies. These efforts are often popular because of
should review their applicable stormwater and wastewater
the public’s positive response to the “greenscaping” that ac-
ordinances and revise them to remove barriers to green
companies the programs. As many local leaders have found,
infrastructure use and encourage more environmentally
using green infrastructure in place of or in combination
friendly regulations. Those looking to see what other juris-
with less effective conventional methods of managing water
dictions have done can consult a variety of resources, such
pollution and stormwater runoff can have benefits beyond
as the comprehensive, publicly available compilation of
just economic cost savings and reduced pollution.
ordinances maintained by Pace University School of Law’s
Land Use Law Center in its Gaining Ground database. This Finding an effective approach to achieve urban water quality
resource contains local ordinances on all subjects, including has been elusive. However, it should be clear now that many
low impact development and stormwater management, and cities are developing a track record of success in the green in-
groups them by state, EPA region, and topic.15 frastructure arena. They are demonstrating convincingly that
green infrastructure is an economically and environmentally
It is also critically important to recognize that some of the
viable approach for water management and natural resource
most significant barriers to incorporating green infrastruc-
protection in urban areas. So with that, let’s do what it takes,
ture into existing urban areas are the costs and challenges
city by city, to start enjoying the environmental and quality-
associated with retrofitting these systems into built-out
of-life benefits green infrastructure delivers.
and space-constrained urban areas. For example, green in-
frastructure solutions may be more appealing to developers Nancy Stoner is the Director of the Clean Water Project at the
and cities when they are part of a large investment of capital Natural Resources Defense Council, an organization that uses
for new projects that are projected to substantially overhaul law, science and the support of 1.2 million members to ensure
and upgrade existing infrastructure. For example, it is of- a safe and healthy environment for all living things; she can
ten less expensive to install a green roof when an existing be reached at (202) 289-2394 or Alexandra
roof needs to be replaced, and rain gardens or trees in road Dapolito Dunn is the Assistant Dean of Environmental Law Pro-
median strips are often installed along with other street im- grams at Pace University School of Law, which is nationally rec-
ognized for its environmental law program; she can be reached at
See; look under “browse resources,” (914) 422-4209 or
no password needed.

February 2008 APWA Reporter 41

Water, water everywhere, and not a drop
to waste…
Michael J. Graves
Project Manager and Wastewater Operations Specialist
Garver Engineers
Norman, Oklahoma

he availability of water is vastly becoming a top prior- southeastern part of the United States has reported extreme
ity of municipal planners and utility administrators. drought conditions, specifically in north and western Geor-
With an increasing population and the subsequent gia. State climatologists and University of Georgia officials
demand for water resources, a new focus on waste- predict little hope of major recovery and say that there is
water reuse is emerging—and not just in the arid climates a good probability that by the spring of 2008 southeastern
of the deep Southwest. A shrinking freshwater supply and Georgia may also experience severe drought conditions.
increasingly stringent discharge criteria have many utility
Water scarcity and expanding metropolitan populations
providers seeing the millions of gallons discharged by their
are encouraging potable water providers to identify and de-
wastewater treatment facilities as a supplemental supply and
potential revenue. velop additional surface and groundwater supply sources.
Officials are planning billion-dollar projects to move un-
In June of 2006, the National Drought Mitigation Cen- allocated raw water hundreds and thousands of miles for
ter at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln reported that treatment and distribution to major population centers.
more than 60 percent of the United States is experiencing In some instances water utilities are competing for water
abnormally dry or drought conditions. More recently, the rights in neighboring states in an effort to quench their
thirst for water supply reserves.

This quest for more water, and increasing regulatory stan-

dards on sewage plant effluents, has driven municipalities
to consider wastewater reuse as a viable long-term solution
to reduce potable water demand. Reclaimed wastewater has
long been an acceptable product for agriculture and golf

ACROSS THE NATION! course irrigation, industrial processes and aquifer recharge.
Polished wastewater effluents are also being utilized for in-
direct reuse or discharge to a surface water supply. In order
to realize sustainability in these and other wastewater reuse
alternatives a utility must have confidence in its ability to
reliably produce high-quality wastewater effluent.

Advancing Water Reuse Technology

Over the past 10 years treatment of wastewater with mem-
brane filters has grown. Membrane filtration delivers superi-
or water quality, and with a growing number of installations,
capital and operational costs are more closely resembling
those associated with traditional wastewater treatment pro-
BUT THERE IS A SIMPLE, EASY SOLUTION. cesses. In addition to the production of reuse quality waste-
water, membranes offer unique advantages during wastewa-
The Access Ready Panel is the perfect answer when the original
cover on a street light pole is missing or cannot be reinstalled.
ter facility expansions as a result of their reduced treatment
Available in any color, it installs in seconds, requires no tools and process unit footprint and operational simplicity.
includes tamper-resistant locks.
Membranes are a man-made filter material that provide a
30 Day Money Back Trial Offer. physical barrier. The membrane’s pore size is designed to
capture target pollutants. Table 1 indicates the range of pol-
THE KELLY GROUP, INC. lutant capture as compared to membrane pore size. Mem-
P. O . B o x 5 4 9 1 E v a n s t o n , I L 6 0 2 0 4 - 5 4 9 1 brane manufacturers offer a number of physical configura-
847-869-0390 847-655-6081 Fax tions ranging from a flat sheet of membrane material to a
w w w. t h e k e l l y g r o u p i n c . c o m spiral-wound tube or even a hollow core fiber.

42 APWA Reporter February 2008

Table 2 represents a comparison of three different wastewa-
Table 1: Spectrum of Membrane Pollutant Capture
ter treatment trains consisting of the following:
Description Pore size (microns) Pollutant Capture
1. Conventional biological process followed by clarifica-
Microfiltration 0.1 – 1.0 Bacteria
tion and granular gravity filtration
Ultrafiltration 0.01 – 0.1 Viruses 2. Conventional biological process followed by clarifica-
Nanofiltration 0.001 – 0.01 Pesticides tion and membrane filtration
Reverse Osmosis < 0.001 Desalination 3. MBR

Most of today’s wastewater treatment facilities employ a bio- Water Reuse Case Study
logical process in which the facility itself is an engineered MBR applications have dramatically increased and, with
environment. They are designed to optimize the biodegra- more installations, more confidence has been established in
dation of organic waste and the separation of suspended the MBR’s ability to produce reliable high-quality effluent.
solids from the incoming wastewater. If a utility desires A recent Midwest case study evaluated two pilot-scale MBR
to produce a reuse quality product, or if a discharge water plants that were targeting extremely low-level effluent phos-
quality target cannot be met with conventional treatment, phorus concentrations. The pilot project verified that the
membrane treatment of wastewater effluents is a practical target effluent concentrations can be met and effluent water
application to consider. Membrane treatment can also oc- quality is sufficient for reuse applications.
cur in a combined process with the conventional biological
The proposed treatment process to meet the effluent phos-
treatment plant.
phorus goal of 0.037-mg/L was an MBR that integrated bio-
This is the concept behind the Membrane Biological Reac- logical, chemical and membrane processes for nutrient re-
tor. MBR treatment plants are unique in that the membranes moval into an activated sludge treatment process. Further,
are integral to the biological process, and in some cases, sub- the proposed treatment process targeted an effluent nitrate
merged within the existing biological process tanks. The level of less than 10 mg/L. There are inherent limitations
MBR scenario offers the previously mentioned capital cost to minimum effluent phosphorus concentrations that can
benefits by eliminating the solids settling (clarifiers) compo- be achieved through biological means. As such, the biologi-
nent of a traditional wastewater treatment plant. However, cal process was enhanced with a chemical nutrient removal
there are also many added operational considerations of the process prior to membrane filtration. Tertiary phosphorus
MBR. Because the membranes take the place of the second- removal was achieved by chemical precipitation with a
ary clarification step, operators are no longer burdened with metal coagulant (alum). The membrane system could then
sludge bulking and the negative impacts of filamentous or provide superior solids and precipitate removal and replace
Nocardia bacteria. Operational issues are further enhanced conventional secondary clarifiers and granular filters. The
by the MBR’s ability to operate at higher suspended solids general schematic of the proposed process treatment train is
concentrations, thus reducing sludge yields and the estab- provided in Figure 1.
lishment of a more stable biomass that is potentially resis-
tant to variable organic and toxic loads.

Table 2: Relative comparison of treatment alternatives

Parameter Conventional Conventional MBR
Clarification Clarification
Granular Membrane
Filtration Filtration
Land use 3X 3X 1X
Effluent Very Good Excellent Excellent
Pathogen Very Good Excellent Excellent
Capital Cost 0.8X 1X 0.9X
Figure 1: Pilot Plant Process Schematic
Processes to 3 3 1
Operate The pilot study was conducted in four phases over a six-
month period. The four phases included:
Operator High High Low
Attention • Phase 1 – Startup: This phase provided the develop-
Operator High Medium Low ment of a microorganism population to establish bio-
Familiarity logical treatment.

February 2008 APWA Reporter 43

• Phase 2 – Optimization: The optimization phase
Table 3: Summary of Pilot Plant Effluent
provided operational time for biological and chemical
Water Quality
phosphorus removal and to allow the membrane pro-
cess to be optimized and finalized prior to entering the Parameter 30-day Running Average
demonstration period.
Total Phosphorus < 0.03
• Phase 3 – Demonstration: This phase aimed to dem-
Nitrate < 7.0
onstrate that the proposed process treatment train can
meet all water quality requirements over the full dem- Ammonia-N < 0.1
onstration period. It also demonstrated the proposed COD < 18
full-scale design parameters. TSS <2
• Phase 4 – Recovery: This phase aimed to determine if Turbidity < 0.05
a recovery clean will restore the membranes to original Total Coliform < 10 cfu/100mL
condition, as well as test for irreversible fouling of the
membranes. Given the water quality achieved by the pilot units, MBR
technology, combined with biological and chemical nutri-
A detailed monitoring, sam- ent removal, should be considered where nutrient require-
pling, and analysis plan was ments of NPDES permits are very stringent and/or for reuse
developed for each phase programs. For instance, the Safe Drinking Water Act targets
of the pilot study to en- a drinking water finished turbidity value of <0.1 ntu. From
sure proper data collection Table 3, the piloted MBR processes produced an effluent tur-
and similarity of results. bidity value an order of magnitude less than the drinking
In general, analytical data water standard.
was collected from 24-hour
composite samplers, and an Water Reuse Scenario
independent certified test- With discharge restrictions driving municipalities to pro-
ing laboratory performed duce near drinking water quality from their wastewater ef-
necessary testing. Opera- fluents, a new paradigm may be in order. For most cities, it
tional data was collected seems a shame to expend the effort required to produce a
via online electronic in- high-quality effluent only to throw it away. The reality is
Hollow Fiber Membrane Module
strumentation, and access to that the effluent produced by an MBR plant will have sig-
the data was provided to project team members through a nificant value. Many municipalities in the arid Southwest
secure Internet connection. The data was evaluated for the and along both coasts already consider treated wastewater
ability to reliably maintain target effluent phosphorus and as a valuable resource and practice reuse in one or more of
nitrate concentrations. Also, the data was analyzed for am- the following ways:
monia, COD, TSS, turbidity and total coliform.
• Irrigation (golf courses, ball fields, agricultural crops, etc.)
Both MBR pilot plants proved to be an effective barrier to • Industrial (boiler water, air scrubbers, etc.)
particulate matter, including unhydrolyzed solids, suspend-
ed solids and chemical precipitants. Given the effectiveness • Commercial (car washes, facility/product washdown, etc.)
of the membranes, the pilot units operated at an elevated • Municipal (firefighting, WWTP washdown, etc.)
suspended solids concentration (9,000 to 11,000 mg/L),
• Indirect potable (blending with other raw water resourc-
thus providing the operational benefits anticipated from a
es prior to WTP)
higher solids concentration.
When assigning a value to this new resource, it is important
During the demonstration phase, both pilot units achieved
to consider at least two key points:
significant phosphorus reduction. Overall, the pilot units
achieved 99.49% phosphorus removal when comparing pilot 1. Every gallon reused in place of potable water translates
unit influent to the pilot unit’s effluent (membrane perme- into an additional gallon of finished water capacity
ate). As shown in Table 3, the pilot units comfortably provid- gained (typical Midwestern finished water rate = $2 per
ed effluent below the extremely stringent phosphorus limit of thousand). This is particularly valuable during the high-
0.037 mg/L. Similar to the total phosphorus, the piloted treat- demand summer months.
ment processes achieved nitrate levels well below the target
set for the pilot study. As demonstrated, the pilot units pro- 2. Direct sale of effluent equates to raw water purchase by
duced an effluent with less than 7 mg/L nitrate. Table 3 sum- industrial and commercial non-potable water users (as-
marizes the effluent water quality from the pilot units during sume raw water rate = 85 cents per thousand).
the demonstration phase as a 30-day running average.

44 APWA Reporter February 2008

For illustration purposes, consider the MBR equipment shift to reuse of one of their most valuable commodities—
payback period if a mid-sized municipality were to practice wastewater effluents—is on the horizon.
non-potable reuse of 1.0 mgd of WWTP effluent:
• Municipal Reuse = 0.6 mgd for all municipal non-pota- The author thanks the Water Business Line staff at Garver Engi-
ble needs (irrigation of golf courses, city parks and mu- neers for their input to this article.
nicipal complexes, WWTP washdown, etc.)
Michael J. Graves can be reached at (405) 329-2555 or MJGraves@
• Effluent Sale = 0.4 mgd for industrial and commercial
• Value = [(2.00/1000)0.6M +
(0.85/1000 + 2.00/1000)0.4M]365
= $854,000/yr The American Public Works Association in cooperation with the National
• MBR Equipment Package Cost = Center of Excellence on SMART Innovations at Arizona State University
($1.50/gal)(1mg) = $1.5M proudly present:

Interest Rate = 3 percent
MBR Equipment Payback Approxi-
Symposium on
mately 2 years

Under this scenario it is evident that

the capital costs associated with ad-
vanced reuse technology can offer a
rapid return on the city’s investment.

Water Reuse Implementation

Before implementation of wastewater
reuse, municipalities should consider The Public Works Role, Strategy and Impact
preparation of a Water Reuse Plan
April 9-10, 2008 • Tempe, AZ
and the associated economic analy-
ses. Such a plan can help educate the
Preparing for Tomorrow
public, develop target users, establish
Although typically a tougher sale to CLIMATE¬CHANGE
the public, the greatest economic po-
tential would be development of the
plant effluent as a source of raw water $IRECTOR¬OF¬.ATIONAL¬#ENTER¬¬ 2ESOURCE¬#ONSERVATION¬0LANNER
supply. As most utility professionals ¬OF¬%XCELLENCE ¬!RIZONA¬3TATE¬ 3EATTLE¬0UBLIC¬5TILITIES
have experienced, when it comes to in- 5NIVERSITY ¬4EMPE ¬!: 3EATTLE ¬7!
direct potable reuse of wastewater the $R¬+RISTIE¬,¬%BI $WAYNE¬+ALYNCHUK ¬0%NG
general public is not convinced that 3ENIOR¬-ANAGING¬3CIENTIST¬ 'ENERAL¬-ANAGER¬OF¬¬
today’s water supply shortage warrants
promotion of wastewater discharges
into water supply reservoirs. $R¬0ETER¬3CHULTZ
As source water supplies continue to 3CIENCE¬0ROGRAM¬/FlCE¬
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ties consider ways to offset the stresses visit our website at and click on
on water supplies, it appears a priority the Symposium on Climate Change link.

February 2008 APWA Reporter 45

Bringing water to the people and people to
the water in Singapore
Gerry Miller, Deputy Director of Water Resources, Black & Veatch, Kansas City, Missouri; Nguan Sen Tan,
Director of Catchment & Waterways Department, PUB Singapore; William Lim Chuan Hoe, Deputy Director
of Catchment & Waterways Department, PUB Singapore; James Currie, Managing Director, Black & Veatch,
Singapore; Kin Joe Cheng, Project Manager, Black & Veatch, Singapore

ecessity has been described used water with microfiltration/ulta- water; public education in keeping
as the mother of invention— filtration, reverse osmosis, and ultra- our waters clean
which may explain why the violet filtration provides multi-barrier,
city-state of Singapore has dual-membrane treatment for direct Through its ABC Waters Programme,
long been a leader in water resources non-potable use and indirect potable PUB seeks to:
management. More than 4.5 million use (mixed and blended with reservoir • Develop these water bodies into
people reside within a geographic area water). A continuous public education vibrant, clean and aesthetically
one-fourth the size of Rhode Island. and acceptance program is an impor- pleasing lifestyle attractions for all
Optimization of water resources is es- tant aspect of NEWater. to enjoy;
sential for a highly urbanized island
nation surrounded by ocean water, Fourthly, Singapore is tapping into • Tap ideas, expertise and resources
and PUB Singapore has adopted an ef- desalination of seawater. The Singa- from watershed managers to de-
fective multifaceted approach to wa- pore-Tuas Seawater Desalination Plant velop and manage catchments
ter resources management by adding earned distinction in the Desalination and water bodies as new commu-
new sources of supply while striving to Plant of the Year category at the 2006 nity spaces, while protecting water
make the most of existing supplies. Global Water Awards. The 36 million- quality and public safety; and
gallon-per-day (136,380 cubic-meter-
As the national water agency, PUB has per-day) seawater reverse-osmosis • Get the community closer to the
a mission to secure an adequate supply (SWRO) plant is the largest of its kind water so that they will learn to
of water at an affordable cost to Singa- in Asia and one of the largest in the treasure it more.
poreans. Its strategy—“Water for All: world. The plant, designed by Black &
An Education and Community En-
Conserve, Value, Enjoy”—captures the Veatch in collaboration with EPC con-
gagement Plan provides the framework
board’s intent to ensure a sustainable tractor Hydrochem (a wholly-owned
for developing a systematic strategy
water supply by diversifying supply subsidiary of Hyflux), is one of the
for reaching key audiences with spe-
sources and managing demand. The most energy-efficient SWRO plants in
cific key messages critical to the suc-
board obtains water from four sources the world.
cess of the ABC Waters Programme. It
and has implemented a public educa-
tion program to bring Singaporeans Singapore’s ABC Waters is essential for gaining the support and
closer to water so they will fully realize Programme involvement of the 3P (People, Public
Singapore’s Active, Beautiful, and Clean and Private) sectors. Its ultimate pur-
its value and embrace conservation.
(ABC) Waters Programme spans the na- pose is to increase public stewardship
Four National Taps tion’s water resources and extends be- of the water bodies and waterways, as
As a result of a concerted effort to diver- yond the functional use of reservoirs well as to inform people about the ABC
sify supply options, PUB now has four and collection channels. Simply stated, Waters Programme.
sources of supply. The first “National the ABCs are: Physical aspects of the plan promote
Tap” is stormwater. Catchments span personal bonding with the local waters
half of Singapore, and total catchment • Active – Introduce new recreation-
al and community spaces for all to and associated land. They can include
area will be increased to two-thirds of such tangible activities as erecting signs
the land area with three new reservoir enjoy; bring people closer to our
waters that indicate the names of waterways,
schemes. The second water source is canals, and major drains; designing and
imported water from neighboring Jo- • Beautiful – Transform utilitarian installing storyboards with interpretive
hore, Malaysia. canals and drains into naturalized displays to convey key messages (e.g.,
NEWater is the third National Tap. rivers and streams history, the water cycle); providing ed-
PUB’s NEWater program provides a ucation sites at selected locations; and
• Clean – Treat water close to source;
sustainable solution to Singapore’s creating a center to highlight the im-
build people-water relationships to
water supply. Advanced treatment of portance of water for Singapore as well
instill sense of ownership of our
as PUB’s achievements in addressing

46 APWA Reporter February 2008

the need for an approach to managing • Natural resources, including ter- • Demographics and urban patterns
and conserving water resources. rain, surface geology and soils, cli- as well as historical, cultural, and
mate, and vegetation; heritage factors; and
Western Catchment Master Plan
In the summer of 2006, PUB engaged • Existing water quantity and quality; • Existing water-based and water-
Black & Veatch to serve as watershed related recreation.
manager for the Western Catchment.
Other companies were engaged to
serve in that capacity for the other
two catchments. The role of each wa-
tershed manager is to prepare a master
plan for its respective catchment and
then implement selected projects over
a three-year period as an initial stage of
the ABC Waters Programme. Selected
projects from the plan completed by
Black & Veatch in June 2007 have been
identified for implementation.

Development of the Western Catch-

ment Master Plan included research and
analysis of many factors, including:

• Principles for successfully integrat-

ing water bodies and activities;

• Principles for sustainable urban Western Catchment area in Singapore (Courtesy of Black & Veatch)
drainage for clean water;

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February 2008 APWA Reporter 47
Singapore has a tropical urban hy-
drology strongly influenced by short-
duration, high-intensity rainfall and
generally urbanized catchments with
extensive impervious paved areas that
are drained by a hydraulically efficient
stormwater collection and conveyance
system. The original natural streams in
the Western Catchment, as elsewhere
in Singapore, have been largely re-
placed by straightened, concrete-lined
channels to enlarge their hydraulic ca-
pacities. Most of the waterways are in-
termittent streams, and the waterways
not separated from the open seas by
tidal gates are subjected to tidal influ-
ence. PUB’s assets in the Western Catch-
ment include seven major water bodies Wetlands are being added to the northern part of Jurong Lake to improve water quality, and
visitors will be able to enjoy the improvements by strolling an adjacent boardwalk. (Courtesy
or reservoirs, four rivers, and numerous
of Black & Veatch)
smaller rivers and major drains.
dragon boating as well as a dock for ments using wetlands.
It is recognized that waterways will not
water play. It will become more beau-
be used unless they are attractive, ac- Pandan Reservoir. The man-made
tiful through the addition of a geyser
cessible, and continuous. For example, Pandan Reservoir is currently a com-
with boardwalks, a promenade, and
improvements largely focus on making petitive water sports area that was
wetlands to soften the edges. And it
waterways more interesting, pleasant, formed through the construction of
will become cleaner through the instal-
enjoyable, satisfying, and fulfilling to a 3.85-mile-long (6.2-kilometer-long)
lation of gross pollutant traps upstream
attract people. The waterways must be earthen dike that is approximately 4.4
of the lake to reduce litter entering the
easily accessible and offer visitors the yards (4 meters) higher than the road
lake, the use of interpretive storyboards
opportunity to follow through to a de- level. As is, the reservoir is not highly
to instruct the public about the history
sired destination. The waterways must visible to the public. Pandan Reservoir
of the lake and the importance of keep-
also contain water beyond their dry provides some wonderful opportuni-
ing the water clean, aeration via the
weather flow channels. ties for development as a major water-
new geyser, and water quality improve-
Two of the six projects in the Western
Catchment Master Plan that have been
selected for immediate development
are briefly described below.

Jurong Lake. Presently surrounding

the Chinese and Japanese Gardens,
Jurong Lake Park has been selected for
transformation. Highlights of the pro-
posals are providing wetlands and a
geyser fountain within the north part
of the lake to improve water quality;
fishing areas; paths and pavilions ring-
ing the lake; visitor facilities including
shelters and a refreshment center; fam-
ily water-based activities in the form of
pedal boats and a children’s fish pond;
significantly increased access from
the eastern and northern sides; and a
historical and science-based focus on
water through storyboards and other
means. The lake and park will become
more active through the addition of ar- One of the improvements planned for Pandan Reservoir is the addition of rowing and kayak-
ing lanes to facilitate more interaction with and appreciation of the water. (Courtesy of Black
eas for fishing and kayaking and mini-
& Veatch)

48 APWA Reporter February 2008

based recreation center in the western
part of Singapore, full of vibrancy and
activity. It can be the place to learn or
improve water sports skills, fish, in-
dulge in remote control model boat-
ing, learn about mangrove habitats, or
simply enjoy a waterside picnic.

In the future, it will become more ac-

tive through enhancements that will
include a viewing deck, car parks, pub-
lic toilets, and changing rooms; the ad-
dition of rowing and kayaking lanes for
training and competition; and facilities
for fishing, sailing and remote-control
boating. Improvements to make the
reservoir more beautiful include the
addition of a floating island to serve as Pandan Reservoir, located in Singapore’s Western Catchment and shown here in existing
a landmark and 455 yard (500 meter) form, is being transformed into a more active, beautiful, and clean water body. (Courtesy of
racing lanes for the rowers; softscap- Black & Veatch)
ing the harsh rock embankments; and Jurong Lake and Pandan Reservoir are ment that can serve as an example for
landscaping and shelters. The reservoir but two elements of the Western Catch- communities worldwide.
will become cleaner through the addi- ment Master Plan, which, in turn, is
but only one piece of a bigger picture. Gerry Miller can be reached at (913)
tion of rock pools along the Ulu Pan-
In many ways and on many levels, Sin- 458-3678 or; James
dan canal that will serve as a place for
gapore is moving ahead with a holistic, Currie can be reached at;
fish to hide and breed and will provide
integrated approach to water manage- and Kin Joe Cheng can be reached at
a safe wading area for the public.

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February 2008 APWA Reporter 49

Implementation of a Membrane Biological
Reactor at Schofield Barracks
Trey Maddox, Engineer Intern, and Karl Santa, Mechanical Engineer, Utilities
Division, Directorate of Public Works, USAG-HI, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii

he island of Oahu has a population approaching one at Schofield Barracks to increase the versatility of the reuse
million people. The primary source of drinking water of the wastewater. Successful design and implementation of
for the population is groundwater. The groundwater the new technological upgrades at the WWTP resulted in
on Oahu is a natural freshwater resource but this re- the improved quality of the treated water from R2 quality to
source is limited. Planners have projected that by the year R1 quality. While the R2 quality was constrained to agricul-
2020 groundwater sources on Oahu will be fully developed. tural use, the R1 quality water can be used for irrigation of
Our island water supply is a precious resource that needs golf courses and other large grassy areas in the vicinity. The
special attention and protection. To extend the life of this increased use of the wastewater alleviates the demand on
precious resource, we need new creative and innovative the groundwater sources.
ideas for water conservation.
The rapid population growth experienced at Schofield Bar-
The large presence of the U.S. Army on Oahu makes them racks not only requires increased conservation but increased
a major player in the role of conserving our water resourc- capacity of the WWTP. The challenge the Army was faced
es. One method the Army is using to achieve sustainabil- with was limited space and a limited budget to implement
ity is upgrading the Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) new technological upgrades of the WWTP. Due to the Ar-


Retain and reuse more of your groundwater or surface water supply! Hear from
the experts ways to ensure your community a safe, dependable water supply and
prepare for future water emergencies. Find out what critical action one agency
had to take during a water crisis and the lessons learned.

Topics of discussion: Speakers:

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50 APWA Reporter February 2008

aeration zone where the bacteria consume the organic com-
pounds before the wastewater reaches the membrane. After
passing through the membrane the water has been stripped
of contaminants such as bacteria and viruses, suspended sol-
ids, parasites, and some organic macro molecules. This puts
the MBR in the ultrafiltration range. Once the water goes
through the membrane it is sent through UV disinfection
which is the final stage of the process before the water is
considered R1 quality.

The membrane bioreactor has several distinct advantages

over the previous existing conventional activated sludge
system. The benefits of the implementation of the MBR re-
sulted in the following improvements:

• Higher quality effluent (R1) with numerous possible ap-

Installation of MBR
plications for reuse
my’s goals and constraints, a Membrane Biological Reactor
• Higher capacity without increasing the plant footprint
system (MBR) was chosen as the ideal solution.
• Elimination of secondary clarifiers
The operation of the MBR technology involves the use of • Increased automation
hollow strands of porous plastic fiber with billions of micro- • Modular expandability
scopic pores on the surface. The pores form a physical barri- • Built-in redundancy
er to impurities while allowing pure water molecules to pass • Higher mixed liquor concentrations (8-10,000 mg/L
through and be collected inside the hollow fiber. Implemen- compared to 1200 mg/L)
tation of an MBR would meet stringent reuse water quality
Due to the limited space and the limited supply of groundwater
standards while increasing capacity, achieve a cost-effective
in Hawaii, the membrane bioreactor was an ideal solution for
and reliable solution, maximize reuse of the existing infra-
the Schofield Barracks wastewater treatment plant. The MBR is
structure, and minimize the plant footprint. The new plant
also in line with the Army’s emphasis on sustainability.
design will increase the flow capacity from 2.3 million gal-
lons per day (MGD) to 4.2 MGD. The increased capacity is On June 5, 2007, Aqua Engineers and the U.S. Army as a
essential for the rapid population growth experienced at partnership were awarded a 2007 Global Ecomagination
Schofield Barracks. The new MBR system is ideal for the new Leadership Award. This was awarded by General Electric as
stringent discharge and reuse limits, tight budgets, and lim- a result of the successful design and implementation of the
ited space the Army is faced with at Schofield Barracks. new technological upgrades at the Wastewater Treatment
Plant at Schofield Barracks.
Construction of the MBR began in March 2006 and was
completed in November 2006. In the MBR system, the fi- Trey Maddox can be reached at (808) 656-1410 ext. 1104 or-
bers are submerged in an aerated biological reactor. Before; Karl Santa can be reached at (808)
the wastewater reaches the MBR it first goes through a fine 656-2682 ext. 1226 or Aqua Engineers,
screen that removes larger particles that could damage the a firm specializing in water and wastewater projects in Hawaii,
fibers. Following the anoxic zone, the wastewater enters an can be reached at

February 2008 APWA Reporter 51

Planning for future water needs of
small rural communities in the west
Tena Campbell, P.E.
Project Manager
Bowen, Collins & Associates
Board Member, APWA Utah Chapter

ater in the western United States is a precious to set the goal for the plan. The Census can help to provide
commodity. Many states such as Utah are con- forecasting numbers. Also, state-operated departments like
sidered to be desert climates and providing the the Utah Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget can pro-
quality and quantity of water to support the vide some assistance with projections. Typical information
inevitable growth is an ongoing battle. Finding, develop- used for demand forecasting is water billing data, weather
ing and sustaining water supplies provides a challenge that data, demographic data and economic data. This informa-
most rural communities struggle to overcome. To maintain tion is used to develop per capita and land use projections.
service to development, communities must be constantly
planning ahead. Evaluate Need for Additional Sources: Once the de-
mand is forecasted, the need for additional supplies can be
Planning for the future can be a daunting task. Smaller com- evaluated. This involves looking at existing sources and de-
munities generally do not have the resources needed for termining their long-term yield. This would include evalu-
proper planning, and they may become overwhelmed with ating the annual production, peak production and seasonal
the task. Planning is generally triggered after an accounting availability of each source. It also includes managing the de-
of the existing system supplies has been done or an event mand on the existing sources allowing them to last longer.
has occurred which drives the need for more source, storage Management of demand can delay the requirement for de-
or distribution. The timeframe used for planning is typically veloping new sources by maximizing the existing supplies.
10-20 years for distribution lines, 20-30 years for transmis-
sion lines and 50+ years for supply sources. The following Identify Water Supply Options: After comparing the
steps outline the planning process that rural communities existing supplies to the projected demands, the supply defi-
can follow. cit can be determined. The community then needs to ex-
amine all possibilities for new sources of supply. These may
Funding the Plan: Most rural communities do not have include groundwater supplies, new or expanded surface sup-
the staff or qualified resources required to develop a plan for plies, purchased water from other suppliers, importation of
their future water needs. This task generally is contracted water through wholesale suppliers, and reuse water. Each of
out to a consultant who can guide them through the de- the available options should be considered and all issues as-
velopment of the plan, but consultants cost money. Fund- sociated with each option should be evaluated. These issues
ing can be obtained for small communities through state may include:
and federal programs which are set up specifically for the
rural cities and towns. A few examples are the State Revolv- • Regulatory requirements for the source such as cross-
ing Fund (SRF) Program and the USDA Rural Development ing state boundaries with supply, development of the
Utility Funding Program for Rural Communities. These pro- source, and monitoring and reporting.
grams offer loan/grant combinations that are attractive to • Water quality of the source. Determining if partial or
small communities. In addition, the Rural Water Association full treatment be required, and if the source be worth
has state chapters set up that can assist rural communities the investment to develop if the water quality is ques-
with applying for funding at little or no cost. The funding tionable.
agencies encourage small and rural communities to devel-
op these plans by providing planning fund options. Most • Proper protection of the new source and any existing
construction project funding requires rural communities to sources in the same area should be considered.
have plans in place to qualify for the funds. The consultant
• Public perception and acceptance can play an important
fees for developing the plan for small communities can be
role in getting approval to construct, operate, maintain
up to $50,000 depending on their complexity. Larger water
and protect the new source.
systems may spend up to $150,000 for a plan.
• Adequate water rights should be available for the source
Demand Forecast: Once funding is secured and resources
before considering its development. In the western
are in place, the planning process can begin. First, a com-
United States, the appropriation doctrine of water rights
munity must first understand what their current and future
is used.
needs will be. Some speculation of future growth is necessary

52 APWA Reporter February 2008

• The life of the new source should be evaluated. If it will menting the plan. A capital improvements program, which
only be available seasonally or for a limited number of is generally phased, should be part of the plan. It may take
years, it may not meet the projected demands. from 10 to 15 years to get the plan funded, studied, designed
and constructed. The plan will be instrumental in applying
• The yield of the new source and the potential impacts for and acquiring funding for the project(s).
on adjacent existing sources must be considered. For ex-
ample, if a groundwater well may influence other exist- Tena Campbell can be reached at (801) 495-2224 or tcampbell@
ing wells in the same aquifer, it may not be permitted This article was brought to you by the APWA
for construction. Small Cities/Rural Communities Forum. For more information
• The environmental impacts of the
new source can rule it out before it
can be constructed. All potential im-
pacts should be evaluated such as en-
dangered species, wetlands, cultural

We make
resources, contaminated soils, visual
impacts, streams and lakes.

• The financial issues and economic

feasibility must be evaluated. If

a source is too expensive to con-
struct based on its ultimate pro-
duction, then it may be ruled out
as an option.

Identify the Preferred Plan: Af-
ter extensive evaluation of all options
and impacts, the preferred alternative
should be selected. The selection should
be based on which option was the most

cost effective, had the least amount of
environmental impact, was most widely
accepted by the public, and was finan-
cially feasible to construct. The selec-
tion team for the preferred alternative
should be made up of representatives
from all interest groups. These may in-
clude staff from the community’s util-
ity and administrative departments,
elected officials, regulators, the public

and/or public interest groups, and en- retex seals keep Mother Nature’s showers from getting into your sanitary system
vironmental groups. All potential stake- through manhole chimneys. By sealing that extra water out, your system gains
holders should participate in the deci- effective capacity overnight.
sion process to facilitate acceptance and
a smooth transition through the plan. Just as importantly, you protect the environment. By keeping rainwater out, you can
An effective way to include the stake- reduce or eliminate system bypassing into rivers and lakes.
holders is to develop a committee with Call or e-mail us ( We’ve got the facts, the case studies, and
representatives from each group which the numbers to show you how our
will participate from start to finish in simple seal can save your sanitary
the planning process. The committee system from a rainy day.
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tion of the preferred alternative is to be Cretex Specialty Products
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Once the plan is complete and the E-mail your inquiries to
preferred alternative selected, the rural
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February 2008 APWA Reporter 53 Cre

Drought of 2007: Drastic times cause
for drastic measures
Layton Meng
PR Manager
Gresham, Smith and Partners
Nashville, Tennessee

s was the case in

most of the south-
eastern United
States throughout
the summer of 2007, Elmore
County, Alabama experi-
enced record lows when it
came to the amount of rain-
fall it received. This lack of
rainfall severely affected
water levels in a number of
lakes in Alabama, including
Lake Martin, which is the
main water supply for the
Central Elmore Water and
Sewer Authority (CEWSA).
After several meetings with
the Alabama Power Compa-
ny, who controls the release
of water from Lake Martin for
power generation, CEWSA
realized that if this situation
was ignored and the drought
The emergency pumps are designed to deliver raw water at a rate of 6,000 gallons per minute. This
continued, they were going floating barge will rise and fall with the lake level, ensuring reliable operation.
to run out of water.
tions. CEWSA elected to work with a local supplier, Hydra-
“To ensure a continuous and uninterrupted supply of water
Service out of Warrior, Ala., who would provide all equip-
to more than 66,000 people, we worked in partnership with
ment and some labor to install the system. After a meeting
water services engineers from Gresham, Smith and Partners
with GS&P, CEWSA and Hydra-Service, a floating barge sys-
(GS&P) to develop a quick, strategic and effective way to
tem was conceptually laid out along with required controls
solve this problem,” commented Robert L. Prince, Jr., gen-
and connections. Understanding the urgency of the prob-
eral manager of CEWSA.
lem, Hydra-Service began fabricating barges the next day.
CEWSA and GS&P started by assessing the situation and
The system was designed to be able to deliver 6,000 gal-
looking at the raw water pump station to determine at what
lons per minute (gpm) to the raw water pump station. The
water level elevation in Lake Martin, the area’s main water
unconventional part was that the static head condition,
supply, the raw water pumps would begin to cavitate. The
typically a fixed quantity in hydraulics, was going to vary
pump’s raw water intake is fed by two intake lines in Lake
from the initial condition to an assumed “doomsday” lake
Martin. The “upper intake” was dry and the lake level was
level when the drought had hit its peak—a level taken to be
continuing to fall to record lows for this time of year, mean-
approximately 18 feet lower than current levels. This was
ing the same fate was possible for the “lower” intake. After
achieved by sizing the pumps for the worst case and utiliz-
much consideration, it was agreed that CEWSA must go for-
ing variable frequency drives to reduce pump speed and flow
ward with the Emergency Drought Intake Plan.
as required.
Emergency Drought Intake Plan The Floating Barge Concept
GS&P considered various pump types, layouts, piping
The barge consists of four separate floats, three of which
schemes and pump feasibilities due to existing site condi-

54 APWA Reporter February 2008

each house a 95 HP submersible pump and the fourth sup- to develop an innovative and non-traditional solution
porting the necessary pipe header. Each pump can handle to a unique problem,” stated Bo Linder, project manager
approximately 4600 gpm. This means two pumps together from GS&P.
achieve the flow required, leaving the third pump as a back-
After five weeks of efficient teamwork, the conceptual de-
up. The associated control panels are set up on shore. Power
sign, fabrication, delivery and construction were complete
is supplied from the existing motor control center with the
and the system was up and running. CEWSA did not experi-
existing 1000 kW genset providing backup power. Eighteen-
ence any interruption in their ability to provide water ser-
inch HDPE pipe is suspended just below the water surface by
vice to their customers. Furthermore, this emergency pump
floats and serves as the raw water line between the barge and
concept, as well as the modifications to the existing infra-
the connection point.
structure, allows CEWSA to operate their existing raw water
pump station in the same manner as prior to the drought. It
also provides easy connections in the future should extreme
drought conditions strike again.

Andy Yarbrough, project engineer from GS&P added, “This

project posed a unique challenge in that we were operat-
ing against a very serious deadline being imposed by nature.
Ultimately, success was a direct result of the collaboration
among all parties involved. Equal input from CEWSA, GS&P
and Hydra-Service led to a reliable solution that maintained
the quality of life for the citizens of Elmore County.”

Layton Meng can be reached at (615) 770-8463 or Layton_
Approximately 550 feet of 18-inch high-density polyethylene pipe
were fused together to provide a discharge line for the floating
pump station. A track hoe is moving the line into place for connec-
tion to the existing 24-inch raw water intake line.

The modifications to existing infrastructure were twofold.

The first required an approximately 10-foot-deep excavation
to get to the upper intake line. It was cut and a 24” tee with
a 24” plug valve was installed. The valve was closed and the
pump discharge was hooked up to the tee. This valve al-
lowed the intake screen to be closed off and isolated from
the emergency pumping system. All joints on the upper in-
take line were dug up and restrained to ensure the pipeline
could handle the operating pressures it would see.

The second modification was necessary because of the need

to hydraulically connect the existing wet well, which was
split into two separate wet wells by an internal partition wall,
while isolating the lower intake screen from the system. Dif-
fering water levels in this wet well were not desirable and
would also make the control system very complex. The solu-
tion was to install a 24” plug valve in the lower intake line.
This modification required an excavation approximately 30’
x 40’ and 25’ deep. The excavation required one six-inch
pump to provide the necessary dewatering during the instal-
lation of the plug valve. Nylon covers were custom-made
and placed on the lower intake screen by divers. The line
was cut and the valve was, after much effort, installed and
closed. Mission accomplished.

“The success of this project boiled down to the coopera-
tion of environmental professionals all working together

February 2008 APWA Reporter 55

Water security update

Matt Singleton
Director of Public Works
City of Grapevine, Texas
Member, APWA Water Resources Management Committee

n the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World President Bush issued a directive that has taken water and
Trade Center and Pentagon many security initiatives were wastewater utility security to a new level. President Bush
enacted—none more critical than the initiatives that af- issued the Homeland Security Presidential Directive 7
fect the 160,000 public drinking water utilities and the (HSPD-7). This directive charges certain federal agencies
more than 16,000 wastewater utilities in the United States. with identifying and prioritizing critical national infrastruc-
ture and resources for protection from terrorist acts that
Drinking water and wastewater facilities are vulnerable to could cause catastrophic health impacts or mass casualties;
a variety of attacks, including contamination with deadly undermine public confidence; or disrupt essential govern-
agents and physical and cyber attacks. In the event these ment functions, essential services or the economy. In rec-
attacks were to occur large numbers of illnesses or casual- ognition of the distinctive characteristics of different infra-
ties or denial of service would be the result. Critical services structure assets, HSPD-7 divides the national infrastructure
such as firefighting, health care and other dependent and into 17 sectors and assigned protection responsibilities for
interdependent sectors such as energy, transportation, and them to selected federal agencies. EPA has been designated
food and agriculture would suffer negative impacts from a as the federal agency for the water sector.
denial of this service.
A key requirement of HSPD-7 is that DHS and EPA develop
For decades, water sector utilities have been protecting hu- a strategy to protect all critical infrastructure. That strategy
man health and the environment. EPA has been working is called the National Infrastructure Protection Plan (NIPP).
with public and private water sector utilities to secure criti- It provides the unifying structure for integration of current
cal infrastructure across the nation. This work began prior to and future infrastructure protection efforts into a single
9/11; many of EPA’s ongoing programs support security-re- national program to achieve the goal of a safer, more se-
lated activities and were carried out under the Safe Drinking cure nation. The plan can be found at
Water Act, Clean Water Act, and the Federal Water Pollution xprevprot/programs/editorial_0827.shtm. Wastewater facili-
Control Act. All water sector utility partners continue to col- ties are now considered a critical asset. Up to now security
efforts concentrated on drinking water systems.
laborate to be better prepared to prevent, detect and respond
to and recover from terrorist attacks and other intentional The National Association of Clean Water Agencies
acts, natural disasters and other hazards. (NACWA) published Protecting Water Infrastructure Assets…
Legal Issues in a Time of Crisis Checklist in the wake of Sep-
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was estab-
tember 11, 2001. Since that time terrorist attacks have con-
lished immediately following 9/11. The mission is to lead
tinued around the world and NACWA has partnered with
the unified national effort to secure America. DHS is to pre-
the American Public Works Association, the Association of
vent and deter terrorist attacks and protect against and re- Metropolitan Water Agencies and the Water Environment
spond to threats and hazards to the nation. DHS is to ensure Federation to expand, revise and update the issues covered
safe and secure borders, welcome lawful immigrants and in the original Checklist. This revision is still in draft form
visitors, and promote the free-flow of commerce. but will soon be released. The original document can be
found in the NACWA bookstore.
Several programs were promulgated to enhance security for
drinking water facilities. Each facility was to develop a Vul- We all rely on clean and safe water. As professionals in the
nerability Assessment that identified potential areas of ex- water and wastewater utility industry it is paramount that
posure to hazards. Then each facility was to develop a Risk we protect these critical assets. All of the sector’s public
Management Plan which outlined tools to mitigate the haz- health, environmental and security-related efforts rely on
ards. EPA is the lead agency, under the DHS, to ensure these a multi-barrier approach. Every community water system
programs were implemented. EPA (at least Region 6) has be- must provide an annual “Consumer Confidence Report” to
gun monitoring facility compliance with the Risk Manage- its customers. We must utilize every tool available to ensure
ment Plan and, in the event of a deficiency, issuing a Notice the most up-to-date and effective security systems.
of Violation and a fine.
Matt Singleton can be reached at (817) 410-3328 or matts@
56 APWA Reporter February 2008
Regional Public Works Emergency
Management Cooperative: a case report
Tim Prince, Chief Engineer, Oakland County Drain Commissioner’s office, Oakland County, Michigan;
Tom Trice, Director of Public Works, Bloomfield Township, Michigan, and APWA Past President; and
Michael Kenel, Senior Management Consultant, CDM, Ann Arbor, Michigan

akland County is located in southeast Michigan and Perceived Needs and Benefits
consists of 61 cities, villages and townships (CVTs). With climate change and an apparent increase in activism
The population density of the county varies from and political extremism, the number and types of hazards
several larger cities that border Detroit in the south- confronting the public works infrastructure appear to be on
east portion of the county, to a very rural environment in the rise. Although no major acts of international terrorism
the northwest. The Oakland County Drain Commissioner have occurred in the U.S. since September 11, 2001, there
(OCDC) oversees water, wastewater, and stormwater activi- continues to be concerns regarding domestic terrorism, ex-
ties within the county and the Road Commission of Oakland tremist elements within more moderate activist organiza-
County (RCOC) oversees the maintenance and operation tions, and more likely, a devious act being committed by
of the county’s roads and bridges. Although the larger cit- a disgruntled employee or citizen. In addition, although
ies and townships often have an independent public works hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires are more frequently
staff, the rural communities are more likely to rely on the associated with the southern and/or western parts of the
County for public works support. In addition, the Southeast U.S., the Great Lakes and eastern regions of the country are
Oakland County Water Authority (SOCWA) provides engi- becoming concerned with the perceived increased risk of
neering support for water public works in 11 of the county’s flooding, droughts, and possible water shortages.
larger communities.
Three independent events suggest that the role public works
Oakland County is providing oversight and coordination of personnel are to play in response to a catastrophic event
County and CVT activities in the areas of emergency, as- is about to change. With the collapse of the World Trade
set, and information management. The County recognizes Center towers on September 11, 2001 it became apparent
that these three management systems overlap in the areas of that public works personnel could be found working with
data collection, storage, and distribution, and that CVTs will local law enforcement and firefighting officials to clear away
need to be able to access a common Information Technol- rubble and search for survivors. During the power outage of
ogy (IT) system or network to achieve real-time data moni- 2003 that impacted the northeastern U.S., we found public
toring across the county. Thus, the County has developed works personnel with hand-held lamps guiding motorists
a common systems approach, requiring that datasets and out of the downtown areas of New York City. Operations
operational procedures be standardized across local juris- were curtailed due to insufficient emergency power backup
dictional lines to provide consistency and efficiency with at water and wastewater facilities. As the public contacted
newly implemented practices and acquired technologies. public works personnel, law enforcement, or their elected
officials regarding the resumption of services, they often re-
With initial funding by the U.S. Department of Homeland ceived different answers making it apparent that data shar-
Security, OCDC selected a steering committee to enhance ing and communications in times of an emergency lacked
public works communication, data sharing, and response consistency and timeliness. Finally, with Hurricane Katrina,
capabilities in the event of a disaster or catastrophic event. we experienced such a vast extent of damage that it was clear
The steering committee includes representatives of OCDC, public works personnel were going to be engaged in disaster
the County’s CVTs, SOCWA, and OCIT, the County’s Infor- recovery efforts long after local law enforcement and fire of-
mation Technology department. In looking at preparedness ficials returned to their daily job assignments.
enhancements, the committee relies on an all-hazards per-
Faced with these challenges, public works personnel clearly
spective, recognizing the need to address both natural di-
exceeded the call of duty. Risking life and limb, they up-
sasters (e.g., floods, storms, pandemics) and acts of sabotage
held America’s longstanding tradition of helping people in
(e.g., domestic or international terrorism). Finally, realizing
need. Perhaps the real lesson learned from these events is
that emergency preparedness tools and programs are more
that we need to invest in the emergency response capabili-
likely to be adopted when integrated into everyday work ac- ties of public works personnel just as we are doing for law
tivities, the committee’s recommended programs and tools enforcement officers and firefighters who currently receive
focus on the more traditional, non-catastrophic events as the majority of security funds. Everyone benefits if public
well (e.g., water main breaks, debris clearing). works personnel have the right equipment, training, and

February 2008 APWA Reporter 57

real-time information enabling them to respond in a timely • Develop policy statements related to the direction and
and sustained manner. operation of the program.

Smaller communities, having limited or no public works • Set short- and long-term goals and objectives.
staff to rely on in an emergency, are perhaps in greatest need
of a regional emergency cooperative that can supplement • Be responsible for securing funding.
their existing capabilities. As local governments experience • Approve and monitor performance metrics.
less federal and state funding, it becomes even more impera-
tive that communities take full advantage of programs and • Approve the scope, schedule, and budget for the 10
tools that can provide optimal emergency preparedness at project initiatives.
the lowest possible cost.
• Assign roles and responsibilities within the coopera-
Vision and Strategic Plan tive.
Through facilitated meetings, the steering committee devel-
A second administrative body, the Technical Council, is
oped a long-term vision of where it wanted the County and
needed to support the identification and adoption of new
CVT public works community to be in regards to emergency
preparedness within the next five to eight years. The vision technologies in a consistent and efficient manner across the
is for public works to work in concert with the other emer- region. Technical Council members could consist of repre-
gency response agencies within the county, and for the indi- sentatives from the County and CVTs recognized for their
vidual public works organizations to share resources, skills, knowledge and expertise in specific disciplines including, at
and information so the County can prevent, prepare for, a minimum:
respond to, and recover from any disaster as quickly and as • Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
efficiently as possible. • Information Technology and System Networks
Four strategic goals were developed to support the public • Emergency Management and Response
works community in reaching its long-term vision. The • Online Water Quality Monitoring
goals focus on having a sustainable governance structure • Security System Design and Implementation
that would oversee: the development of technologies and • Communication Systems
procedures in a consistent manner across the various CVT
The Technical Council would guide the governance board
jurisdictions; the development of standardized emergency
on the adoption of new technologies as they become com-
operating procedures that would service as the basis of train-
mercially available, and would develop standards and pro-
ing and exercises; the enhancement of emergency notifica-
tocols enabling the local communities to adopt acquired
tion and interoperable communication systems; and the
technologies for seamless integration across jurisdictional
providing of public works personnel with the technology
lines. The Technical Council also would act as a resource to
and real-time data to best manage an emergency.
local communities regarding the selection of specific ven-
The steering committee identified deliverables and/or activi- dor products and provide cost savings by recommending the
ties that would need to be performed for the public works consolidation of purchases.
community to reach their strategic goals. Some 74 deliver-
ables and/or activities were identified. These activities were 2. Standardized Supporting Data Sets: The data man-
grouped into 10 project initiatives which now serve as the agement needs of GIS, Asset Management, Emergency Man-
basis of the steering committee’s Strategic Plan for Emergen- agement, and Computer Maintenance Management Systems
cy Preparedness. often overlap. For example, geographically locating critical
infrastructure assets on a GIS system can support an emer-
Project Initiatives gency management program by enabling emergency person-
The timing and degree to which the 10 project initiatives nel to arrive promptly at the scene. The physical condition
are implemented will depend on the availability of resources and repair history for water mains as stored in an asset man-
and the specific needs of the public works community as the agement database might be accessed to support a decision to
program matures over the next four to five years. The proj- replace the water main instead of repairing it again. As in-
ects were designed and described in such a fashion so that dividual public works communities obtain and accumulate
communities would clearly recognize that, by joining the this data, it would be prudent to have a standardized data
regional cooperative, they could achieve an optimal level of format and common terminology allowing data sharing and
preparedness with far less expense than if they were to try to analysis in a similar fashion across the region.
achieve the same results on their own. The following project
initiatives were identified: 3. Standardized Operating Procedures: Public works
personnel need to know their specific roles and responsibili-
1. Governance: Representatives of the various CVTs would ties in responding to an emergency. Often these responsi-
be selected by the steering committee to oversee the activities bilities differ depending on the nature of the incident (e.g.,
of the cooperative. Specifically the governance board would: tornado versus water contamination). Incident-specific

58 APWA Reporter February 2008

emergency operating procedures adopted uniformly by all 6. Drills and Exercises: Building on the standardized
participants within the cooperative can enhance under- emergency operating procedures and training defined earlier,
standing and expectations during an emergency and serve drills and exercises complete the cycle. The lessons learned
as the basis for joint training and exercises. A formalized during the drills and exercises can be used to further refine
method of issuing additional operational procedures when the response procedures and training content. A strategy for
new technologies are acquired should be implemented. conducting drills and exercises is needed if public works per-
This ensures the regular communication of what is needed sonnel are going to gain the maximum benefit. Experience
to achieve optimal performance. It is particularly impor- suggests that public works personnel receive prior training in
tant that such procedures reflect the Incident Command the National Incident Management System and the Incident
structure as defined in the National Incident Management Command organizational structure. Staff should understand
System and that the incident-specific emergency operating the role and responsibilities of the Incident Commander, the
procedures address all hazards that might be expected to various section chiefs (e.g., logistics, operations), and the
confront public works personnel. supporting role team members need to play. By conducting
sequentially more complex table-top exercises, the activities
4. Joint Training Program: Joint training can reduce
take on real meaning, especially if they are based on some
overall costs, build relationships, promote communication
of the more common disasters likely to be encountered (e.g.,
across jurisdictional lines, and be structured to make maxi-
major water main breaks, inclement weather, power outages)
mum and practical use of standardized operating procedures.
by public works personnel. Similarly, live exercises are best
In addition to training on adopted procedures, training is
received if they start with public works personnel and then
also needed on the Incident Command System as it applies
expand to include local law enforcement and first respond-
to public works operations, and on the deployment of new
ers, culminating with more complex incident scenarios in-
technologies as they are adopted across the region. Training,
volving multiple agencies (e.g., public health, hospitals, and
and possible credentialing of response team members, may
state government agencies).
remove the concern often expressed about the preparedness
of personnel providing assistance. The overall training pro- 7. Mutual Aid Agreement and Response Teams:
gram can consist of courses provided by federal and state WARN (Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network) is a
agencies, third-party vendors, or members of the Technical mutual aid initiative being promoted by the U.S. Environ-
Council and local communities. mental Protection Agency (EPA) and individual state emer-
gency management agencies. WARN proposes that a mutual
5. Communication and Alert Notification: Consider-
aid agreement is signed by the utilities to share resources in
able investment has been made to provide local law enforce-
response to an emergency or catastrophic event. A number of
ment and first responders with interoperable communica-
states are expanding the initial concept beyond wastewater
tions and automated alert notification systems. Such systems
and water utilities to include transportation and other parts
are equally important to public works personnel because of
of the broader public works community. Contact names and
their expanded role in response and recovery operations.
equipment lists are provided to facilitate the exchange of
Typically, during the early phases of an emergency, there
resources. The Oakland County Mutual Aid (OCMA) agree-
is a heightened need for law enforcement and firefighters
ment, developed as part of the Public Works Emergency
to communicate quickly and effectively. Consequently, pro-
Management Cooperative, goes well beyond WARN. OCMA
tocols may need to assign a lower priority to routine public
provides a governance structure that oversees emergency
works announcements to ensure that emergency communi-
management practices across jurisdictional lines. In addi-
cations are uninterrupted and that the entire system is not
tion to equipment and resource lists, OCMA looks at issues
related to interoperable communications, alert notification,
Given the large number of CVTs within Oakland County, sharing of real-time information, and optimizing response
and that multiple points of contact may be needed for some capabilities through the creation of Rapid Response Teams.
communities, an automated alert notification system can Rapid Response Teams are intended to optimize response ca-
reduce call and response times significantly. Commercially pabilities by having a select and limited number of highly
available software packages can systematically send text and efficient, trained, and equipped response teams dedicated to
voice messages over an array of communication devices specific emergency tasks such as road clearing, underground
(e.g., land lines, cell phones, pagers, e-mails) until the tar- pipe installation, and emergency power generation. With a
geted recipient acknowledges receipt of the message. Such finite number of teams strategically placed throughout the
systems can automatically translate voice and text messages county or region, the need for each community or jurisdic-
into foreign languages. In addition, they often can over- tion to develop the sole ability to address a catastrophic
come the obstacles that occur when individual communi- event is avoided. Cost savings come from the consolidation
ties use incompatible communication devices from different of training, equipment, and exercise requirements.
8. SCADA and Security System Integration: Super-
visory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) and Access

February 2008 APWA Reporter 59

Control/Video Surveillance Security Systems allow public information can enable public works personnel to review ma-
works personnel to control and monitor operations at their terials when their workloads are at a minimum:
individual facilities. In the event of an emergency, person-
nel may need to abandon their work locations and seek shel- • Facility-Specific Critical Infrastructure Protection Plans
ter at a distant location. The ability to control and monitor • Standardized Routine Operational Procedures
these systems at a remote location provides an added mar- • Standardized Incident-Specific Emergency Operating
gin of safety and redundancy. The operation of such systems Procedures
on a common regional network allows, with appropriate ac- • Training Announcements and Individual Training Records
cess restrictions, personnel to access real-time data and con- • Emergency Evacuation and Shelter Plans
trol devices at any point along the network. This may prove • Location of Emergency Equipment, Spare Parts, and Key
valuable in those circumstances (e.g., airborne release of a Personnel
toxic agent) where public works personnel are unable to ac- In summary, the training and knowledge needed by public
cess their normal work locations. works personnel to respond to relatively infrequent emer-
9. Contamination gency events can be significantly improved by providing a
Warning Systems: user-friendly information management system.
Early warning detec- Critical Success Factors
tion of contaminated
Four critical success factors are identified in implementing
drinking water can sig-
the Public Works Emergency Management Cooperative: the
nificantly reduce the
need for top-down commitment, strong leadership, empow-
negative consequences
erment of local public works personnel, and funding.
related to a contami-
nation. The EPA has As with any new initiative, strong senior management and
developed a strategy organizational commitment are needed to promote signifi-
for the early detection cant change. This is particularly challenging for a regional
of water contaminants Figure 1: A field monitor station cooperative where reporting and organizational structures
that couples five sur- measuring ammonia, conductivity, pH, are fractionated. It requires that the top managers in each
temperature, dissolved oxygen, UV, and
veillance systems with total chlorine participating public works community know, accept, and
a “Consequence Man- communicate the contributing roles and responsibilities of
agement Plan.” Each of the following surveillance systems individual public works personnel dedicated within their or-
is to have clearly defined “triggering criteria” that will signal ganization. Without an ongoing commitment, any attempt
an increased level of threat and action: to heighten preparedness will be short-lived.

• Online Water Quality Monitoring (Figure 1) Equally important is strong leadership from those oversee-
• Routine Sampling and Analysis ing the governance of the program. This is particularly diffi-
• Public Health Disease Outbreak Surveillance cult given the often challenging workloads of public service
• Citizen or Customer Complaint Call Centers personnel. In many cases, this problem has been exacerbat-
• Security Breach Notification System ed by recent and frequent cutbacks in funding. This concern
can be partially addressed if the cooperative’s governing
With each increasing threat level (possible, credible, or con-
board establishes a management system approach, allowing
firmed contamination event) the Consequence Management
board members to set policies, goals, objectives, and perfor-
Plan details the appropriate additional investigation and
mance metrics demonstrating progress toward the intended
emergency response measures that are to be implemented.
goals. Such metrics must be easily measurable and are most
10. Web-based Emergency Information Portal: A criti- relevant when directly related to an outcome. For example,
cal factor in the long-term sustainability of any public works a valid performance metric for the cooperative would be the
organization is the ability to retain and build on its existing amount of time it takes a Rapid Response Team to collec-
knowledge base. This historical problem is further complicat- tively assemble, fully equipped and ready to respond in a
ed by the Baby Boomer generation reaching retirement age. proficient manner, at a mock disaster site.
Formal succession plans are needed to avoid “brain drain.”
Empowering and holding public works personnel account-
Hard copies of training materials and operational procedures
able are key ingredients. Frontline personnel often have the
that are not used on a routine basis are often stored out of
knowledge and practical experience to know what works
sight, only to be retrieved in an emergency. With the advent
well. Their views need to be considered as part of the design
of computer technology and the Internet, training materials
of any particular project or initiative and/or in the setting of
and operational procedures can be retrieved online during
reasonable performance metrics. Provided with the neces-
non-emergency times. A secure and password-protected in-
sary tools, training, and data, their overarching goal is to
formation Web portal that contains the following types of
implement any project or initiative in a manner that has a

60 APWA Reporter February 2008

positive impact on the relative performance metrics. Given of resources and skills can better attain an optimal state of
the often uncertainty regarding the impact of a project or readiness at the lowest cost. Getting local governments to
initiative on a specific metric, it is often better to adopt a accept this most general premise has not been difficult. By
“continuous improvement” philosophy and acknowledge the same token, it is not difficult to gain acceptance of the
the benefit of incremental improvements. belief that optimal preparedness can save lives and reduce
property damage in the event of a catastrophe. The great-
Finally, funding is problematic. Federal grants, the primary est contention seems to lie in how such programs are to be
means for funding such initiatives, is often sporadic and spe- funded and in developing consensus on the optimal state
cific to a particular project or need. Ongoing funding may of preparedness needed. An ongoing funding stream, even
be needed from the benefiting local governments to address if minimal, is needed to sustain the cooperative over time.
at least the administrative costs of running the cooperative. Otherwise, as in the past, we are likely to be confronted with
This can be in the form of actual dollars or donated time and a program that falls to the wayside, only to be regenerated
equipment. In addition to providing oversight of the coop- after some new tragedy occurs.
erative’s activities, the administrative costs also support the
application for federal grants. The solution to the funding Striving for consensus on some optimal state of prepared-
dilemma is most likely to consist of several factors. For ex- ness might be a moot point. We all have perceptions on
ample, funds from local governments are likely needed for what needs to be done. But lack of time and resources often
the administrative costs of the cooperative while more costly limits our ability to implement what is needed. Neverthe-
projects should be targeted for federal grants (of which there less, taking the time to agree on a vision and list of support-
are a number of sources). The use of a risk-based approach ing projects will contribute to a sense of unity and direction.
could be utilized to prioritize all projects. As funds become This is particularly important when dealing with a diverse
available, projects offering the greatest risk reduction would and broad number of local communities that want to do the
be funded first. Finally, it should be accepted that the time right thing, but are in need of some semblance of structure
of project completion will be related to the rate that funding and organization.
is achieved.
Tim Prince can be reached at (248) 858-0958 or ocdc@oakgov.
Concluding Remarks com; Tom Trice, APWA Past President, can be reached at (248)
The need for a regional Public Works Emergency Manage- 433-7732 or; and Michael Kenel can be
ment Cooperative is driven by the belief that the pooling reached at (313) 919-2685 or

When you contact an advertiser regarding a product, please tell them you saw their ad in the APWA Reporter. Thanks! – The Editor
Legend: IFC = Inside Front Cover; IBC = Inside Back Cover; BC = Back Cover

Buchart-Horn, Inc., p. 66 Historical Bricks, p. 66 Neenah Foundry Company, p. 28
Burns & McDonnell, p. 67 Holt Technologies, p. 67 NTech Industries, Inc., p. 66
Cemen Tech, p. 23 Hubbell, Roth & Clark, Inc., p. 66 O.R. Colan Associates, p. 67
Central Parts Warehouse, p. 66 The Kelly Group Inc., p. 42 PacifiCAD, p. 66
CIPPlanner, p. 51 LyCox Enterprises, Inc., p. 49 Paragon Partners Ltd., p. 66
Cretex Specialty Products, p. 53 Magswitch, p. 27 Pulltarps Manufacturing, p. 66
Dannenbaum Engineering Company, Manhole Adjustible Riser Co., p. 67 Soil Retention Systems, p. 63
p. 66
Mattern & Craig, p. 36 Upper Iowa University, p. IFC
Designovations, Inc., p. 67
MCP Industries, p. 67 USABlueBook, p. 31
East Jordan Iron Works, p. 32
Metal Forms Corporation, p. 67 WEST Consultants, Inc., p. 67
ESRI, p. 2
M.J. Harden Associates, Inc., p. 66 The Willdan Group of Companies, pp.
Filterra, p. 19 6, 67
National Society of Professional Engi-
Gee Asphalt Systems, Inc., p. 66 neers, p. 1

February 2008 APWA Reporter 61

Kyle Clark, a student in Kansas City, MO, “The City of Hayward, CA is looking into
asks “Do any public works departments ways to control illegal dumping within
ever allow advertising on their snow- the city limits. Among the options we are
plows or street sweepers like you see on exploring is the use of wireless “flash-
city buses?” cams” which photograph violators and
warn them that they have been detected. We would
Thanks, Kyle. To my knowledge most public like to know if you have any information you could
agencies that are supported by general revenue share with us about this equipment.” Randall
tax dollars are not allowed to place paid advertis- Smith, Hayward, CA
ing on their equipment. City bus services actual-
ly operate with their own revenue stream so they The equipment is being used for several purposes
can set their own guidelines for generating funds. If public in many locations around the country. Phoenix
agencies were allowed to do so, the money generated would is using it to record graffiti artists in the act. Oth-
go back into the big “city pot” of money and could not be er locations are using it for the purpose you men-
dedicated specifically to public works. tion, recording illegal dumping as well as surveil-
lance of high crime or indecent exposure areas. Since the
Public works agencies have been creative in decorating
cameras are battery operated and equipped with a flash to
their snowplows. Several have contests for their residents or
allow for taking photos after dark, it sounds like it would be
school classes or art groups to paint the snowplow blades.
ideal for your purposes. The units cost approximately $5,500
As you can imagine they are pretty creative. The blades are
each. If you are using the Flashcam and could provide ad-
then usually put on display prior to the heavy snow removal
ditional information, you can contact Randall directly at
season. The paint wears off by the end of the winter, the
plow blades or cleaned and prepared, and another contest
takes place the next fall. “Guess the pandemic flu excitement is
over. Haven’t heard anything about it re-
“We are interested in developing mutual
cently. Do we need to worry about it any
aid agreements for our public works de-
partment, similar to those that police
and fire departments have. Does APWA
Not sure I’d agree that it’s “over” because I don’t
have any samples available or anyone we
think it’s even started in this country yet. Pan-
could talk to about it?”
demic drills have been scheduled in several ma-
jor cities across the country to enable local gov-
Yes on both counts. The APWA website Resource
ernments and businesses to work through mock
Center ( then emer-
drills to see how well-prepared they would be with commu-
gency management) has several plans for various
nications and precautions should the flu pandemic actual-
agencies that could give you a good jumping off
ly occur. Chicago was the first to test their capabilities with
point to begin working on yours. Another great
the aid of a computer simulation. About 100 employees of
resource would be the public works folks in Gainesville, FL.
five city agencies and private businesses watched on pro-
They just completed their Accreditation Site Visit, becom-
jection screens as the officials decided how to respond to
ing the 48th agency, and the entire Chapter 8, Emergency
power outages, staffing shortages at police and fire depart-
Management, was documented as a Model Chapter. This
ments and a lack of basic supplies at supermarkets. Sorry
means they have many great things to share in the art of
to say, the public works department was not one of the
public works emergency management. Feel free to contact
city agencies invited to participate in the drill. Guess basic
Teresa Scott, Public Works Director, at scotta@cityofgaines-
services like water, wastewater, operation of traffic signals,
etc. won’t be impacted!

62 APWA Reporter February 2008

Program organizers did note that
they had not made some major deci-
sions such as what would happen if
the schools were to close. Who would
take care of the kids? Would parents
have to stay home from work? There
are definitely some serious concerns to
be addressed and public works players
should be in on the discussions. Future
tests of the simulation are scheduled
for 2008 in New York, Los Angeles,
and Atlanta. If you have the oppor-
tunity, step up and insist that public
works be part of the drills!

“I know we’ve joked

about reusing treated
wastewater for years
but with the severe
drought in many
areas, is that getting closer to

Yes. I’m not aware of actual

treated wastewater being
used for drinking water pur-
poses, but that may be hap-
pening already. However,
several areas are working on plans to
put highly treated water filtered from
sewer lines back into the ground to
boost drinking water supplies. The City
of Huntington Beach, CA is finalizing
a procedure that would put the treated
water, already filtered extremely well
through a reverse osmosis process so
that it takes out even minuscule viruses, Driveways I Pathways I RV & Boat Areas
through a sterilizing process of heavy Fire Lanes I Swales I Parking Areas
ultraviolet light and hydrogen peroxide,
meant to break down anything left into
harmless elements like carbon and hy-
drogen. The agency believes putting the
water back into the ground will boost
the amount of usable water from city
wells which supply about three-quarters
of the city’s water.

Ask Ann…
Please address all inquiries to:
Ann Daniels
APWA, 2345 Grand Blvd., Suite 700
Kansas City, MO 64108-2625
Fax questions to: Plantable concrete systems ®

(816) 472-1610
8 0 0 - 3 4 6 - 7 9 9 5
Operations Engineer the Nebraska Department of Economic Development as the
Cape Girardeau, MO “Community of the Century.” Our clean Midwestern com-
Experience in civil engineering or closely-related discipline, munity of 22,000 has more industry per capita than any
in traffic signal operations/maintenance and street mainte- other city in Nebraska. The current City Engineer has been
nance/construction is required. Preference may be given for with us for over 30 years and will retire in about a year.
B.S. degree in Civil Engineering and a Missouri Professional Build on your career experience by coming to Columbus,
Engineer registration or the ability to obtain within one Nebraska. Salary $38,424 to $51,876. Apply to City of Co-
year. Starting salary range $45,487.10 to $55,432.00 plus lumbus H.R., 2424 14th St., Columbus, NE 68601. Fax (402)
benefits DOQ. See for details. 563-1380, e-mail
Send résumé to Human Resources, 401 Independence, Cape
Girardeau, MO 63703. Résumés will be accepted until the Assistant Fleet Manager
position is filled. EOE/ADA/M/F/V County of Sonoma, Fleet Operations
Santa Rosa, CA
Director of Public Works Grow your career with the County of Sonoma General Ser-
Waukesha, WI (pop. 70,000) vices Department! In this management-level position, you
Growing, historic, full-service community located in SE will manage staff, operations and related projects of the
Wisconsin seeks experienced public works professional to Fleet Operations Division. We are seeking an individual
lead its full-service Public Works Department consisting of with academic course work in automotive or equipment
119 full-time employees and $8.9 million operating budget maintenance, engineering, public administration, business
plus $10.5 million wastewater treatment facility budget and administration, and two years of supervisory experience in
$5 million annual capital budget. Bachelor’s degree in civil automotive or equipment maintenance, including experi-
engineering or related field required plus seven to ten years ence with computerized maintenance systems; and excel-
increasingly responsible public works management experi- lent interpersonal, supervising and communication skills.
ence. Professional engineering designation preferred. Ap- The salary range is $75,950–$92,334 annually with excellent
pointed by Mayor and City Administrator with consent of benefits, including 3% at 60 retirement package. For a de-
the Common Council. Residency preferred. Salary range: tailed job description, required application packet and to ap-
$91,000–$119,000 DOQ. Position open until filled. Submit ply online, please visit or
résumé with salary history and five references to Heidi Voor- contact Sonoma County Human Resources, (707) 565-2331,
hees, President, The PAR Group, 100 N. Waukegan Road, 575 Administration Dr., 116B, Santa Rosa, CA 95403. Appli-
Suite 211, Lake Bluff, IL 60044. TEL: (847) 234-0005; FAX: cation deadline February 10, 2008. EOE/AA
(847) 234-8309; E-Mail:
Director of Public Works
Public Works Director Evanston, IL (pop. 75,000)
Edmond, Oklahoma Beautiful lakefront community north of Chicago seeks expe-
Complete position profile available at rienced candidates to lead its Public Works Department. 196
careers. Send résumé to Human Resources, PO Box 2970, FTEs and $100 million budget. Home to Northwestern Uni-
Edmond, OK 73083 or fax to (405) 359-4688. versity, Evanston is an ethnically, racially and economically
diverse community. Position is appointed by City Manager.
Assistant City Engineer Qualified individuals expected to have a strong background
Columbus, NE in strategic planning, organizing and directing the adminis-
Description: Professional Engineering position which could trative, management and operational functions of an urban
reasonably lead to becoming the City Engineer for the City public works department. Must have five to ten years in-
of Columbus, Nebraska. Will initially be assigned to develop creasingly responsible experience in an upper management
the Surface Water Management Program and perform de- position in a community of comparable size and complex-
sign work under the direction of the City Engineer. Require- ity. Requires bachelor’s degree in engineering, public admin-
ments: Bachelor’s degree in civil engineering or related field. istration or related field. Master’s degree or P.E. strongly de-
Must have passed the Fundamentals Exam, possess at least sired. Additional information regarding the position can be
two years of civil engineering experience and have the abil- found at the Consultant’s website:
ity to become Nebraska licensed as a Professional Engineer Starting salary $115,000–$120,000 DOQ. Residency not re-
within two years. The City of Columbus was recognized by quired. Open until filled. Inquire/apply in confidence: The

64 APWA Reporter February 2008

PAR Group, Heidi Voorhees, President, 100 N. Waukegan Wastewater Treatment Plant Superintendent,
Road, Suite 211, Lake Bluff, IL 60044. TEL: (847) 234-0005; $67,371–$90,709/yr.
FAX: (847) 234-8309; Email: Lansing, MI
This career position requires a bachelor’s degree in civil,
Assistant Director, Operations & Maintenance
chemical, environmental engineering or a related field and
Bellevue, WA
six (6) years of experience in either a Class A or B Wastewater
The City of Bellevue, WA is seeking candidates for the As-
Plant of which three (3) years of experience must have been
sistant Director of Operations and Maintenance for the
in a supervisory capacity in a Class A Plant (or an equiva-
Utilities Department. This position leads 110 professionals
lency). Must be certified as a Class A Plant Operator by the
in the operations and maintenance of regional water, waste-
State of Michigan, and possess a valid driver’s license. Inter-
water, and surface water systems and the performance of
ested applicants must complete and return a City of Lansing
street and walkway/bikeway maintenance activities. Candi-
Employment Application by February 18, 2008. View our
date should have a bachelor’s degree in a related field, MS
website at for more details or call
or MPA preferred, and 8+ years of managerial experience in
(517) 483-4004.
public utilities or an equivalent combination. Salary range is
$83,357–$115,059 DOE. For more information or to submit Director of Public Works
your résumé, go to Please sub- Fairfield, OH
mit résumé by February 15, 2008. The City of Fairfield, Ohio seeks a Director of Public Works.
Fairfield is a full-service, progressive city, located just north
Engineering Division Manager of Cincinnati. It has a vibrant economic base, exceptional
Travis County, TX quality of life and encompasses 20 square miles, with a pop-
Travis County (Austin, TX) is seeking qualified candidates to ulation approaching 45,000. The Director of Public Works is
manage the development and implementation of complex responsible for overseeing the Divisions of Construction Ser-
engineering project scopes, schedules, budgets and programs; vices, Streets and Drainage, Engineering and Fleet Manage-
direct and supervise technical and professional staff involved ment. The City also operates a utility enterprise comprised
with the maintenance and construction of road and bridge of water and wastewater treatment, collection and distribu-
inventory; and coordinate and work closely with officials, tion. The Director of Public Works reports directly to the
department heads and outside agencies. Requires experience City Manager and is responsible for a total annual budget
and education equivalent to a bachelor’s degree in civil en- of $5.2 million which includes 41 full-time employees. The
gineering or closely-related field plus five years professional five-year capital improvement plan is $47.6 million. Fair-
engineering design and/or analysis experience to include field holds the distinction of being one of only 45
three years in a management or supervisory role. Registration Public Works Departments in the nation to earn
as a Professional Engineer in the State of Texas or proof of full departmental accreditation from APWA. The
eligibility for reciprocity at the time of hire. If licensed in an- successful candidate will have a bachelor’s degree in engi-
other state, Texas license must be obtained within six months neering, public administration or a related field. A master’s
of hire. $5,923.70–$7,700.82 Monthly CWE + comprehen- degree is preferred. Relevant experience in a city of com-
sive benefit package. Open Until Filled. To apply, download parable size and complexity may be substituted as appro-
the Travis County Employment Application at www.Trav- priate. Ohio Engineering licensure or ability to obtain same and submit with résumé to a plus. This assignment requires substantial background in or direct mail to: Travis County HRMD, 1010 the following: construction management, infrastructure de-
Lavaca Street, Austin, TX 78701. EOE/ADA velopment, maintenance of facilities, streets and drainage
systems, engineering design and fleet operation. Must have
Storm Water (MS4) Manager excellent leadership, communication and managerial skills
Dallas, TX and valid driver’s license. Position offers a highly competi-
The City of Dallas is seeking a Senior Program Manager for tive salary and benefits package. For information about the
the Storm Water (MS4) Program. Primary responsibilities City of Fairfield, visit To apply, send
include compliance with the MS4 permit, managing the résumé and salary history to: H.R. Manager, City of Fairfield,
storm water utility, and coordinating with other agencies 5350 Pleasant Ave, Fairfield, OH 45014 or e-mail to human_
and City departments. The program has a staff of 52 with Résumé submittals preferred by
an operating budget of approx. $4.5M and utility fund 2/29/08. EOE/ADA
of approx. $29M annually. Qualifications: BS in civil or
environmental engineering, water resources, or closely- Storm Water Superintendent
related field (advance degree is preferred) and minimum of Aurora, CO
six years experience (a minimum of two at a management The City of Aurora is accepting applications for the position
level). Experience managing one or more Phase I NPDES and of Storm Water Superintendent.  This position coordinates
and directs the storm drainage maintenance section of the
or TPDES storm water programs is preferred. Hiring range:
Water Department under the direction of the Manager of
$5,717–$7,576 monthly. Send a résumé and cover letter to
Wastewater & Storm Drain. For a complete job description
and to apply online go to EOE

February 2008 APWA Reporter 65

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66 APWA Reporter February 2008

MCP Industries
Career Opportunities
Manhole adjustment problems?
Mfg. co. having locations in sev-
Need Help?
eral states seeking qualified can-
We Have Solutions!
didates for Sales/Engineer for No. TX, AR, OK, No. LA. Qualifica-
tions incl. bachelor’s degree (civil
engineering or related field desir-
ADJUSTABLE able). Sales exp. in construction/
RISER CO. INC. infrastructure industries, i.e.,
641-672-2356 • 1-800-785-2526 underground utility contractors,
Fax: 641-672-1038 dept. of sanitation. Desirable to
Oskaloosa, Iowa have experience but willing to
train into position. E-mail résumé

Mfg. co. having locations in sev-

eral states seeking qualified can-
Cut concrete forming time in half didates for Civil Engineer/Pro-
with Poly Meta Forms®. This motional Rep/Sales Engineer for
revolutionary system out
performs wood hands
Arizona. Qualifications incl. bach-
down. Ask about elor’s degree (civil engineering or
our “Sidewalk related field desirable). Sales exp.
Construction Kit”
designed for in construction/infrastructure in-
Public Works dustries, i.e., underground utility
contractors, dept. of sanitation.
Desirable to have exp. but will-
Metal Forms Corporation •
Phone: 414-964-4550 • Fax: 414-964-4503
ing to train into position. E-mail
résumé to



No Concrete
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February 2008 APWA Reporter 67

International Public Works Congress & Exposition North American Snow Conference
2008 Aug. 17-20 New Orleans, LA 2008 Apr. 13-16 Louisville, KY
2009 Sept. 13-16 Columbus, OH 2009 Apr. 26-29 Des Moines, IA
2010 Aug. 15-18 Boston, MA
For more information, contact Brenda Shaver at (800) 848-APWA or send
2011 Sept. 18-21 Denver, CO
e-mail to
2012 Aug. 26-29 Indianapolis, IN
2013 Aug. 25-28 Chicago, IL
National Public Works Week: May 18-24, 2008
For more information, contact Dana Priddy at (800) 848-APWA or send
e-mail to Always the third full week in May. For more information, contact Jon
Dilley at (800) 848-APWA or send e-mail to

Products in the News

Magnetic Manhole Elegant new Shorewood
Lifters from fixture designed for historic
Magswitch districts, civic renovations
Magswitch Technol- Sun Valley Lighting introduces
ogy Inc. has uncovered Shorewood, a classically-styled
a better way to lift man- lantern designed to enhance historic
hole covers without the restorations and new commercial
strain and injury associ- projects. Shorewood can be wall- or
ated with the standard manhole hook or shovel. Fingers are pole-mounted and features an integral,
broken, back muscles are twisted and pulled, and cities lose self-contained ballast compartment
hundreds of man-hours and pay thousands of dollars each with “quick disconnect” capability.
year specifically related to manhole cover injury. The Mag- This allows the electrical module to
switch Manhole Lifters virtually eliminate the chance of be unplugged and replaced in seconds
injury by keeping your employees in control of the manhole during routine servicing or maintenance. The luminaire is
cover, and its lightweight design and ease of use will keep UL-listed for damp or wet locations and houses lamps up to
your employees productive and safe. Would you spend one 250 watts. Shorewood features a rounded dome and curved
minute to save thousands of dollars per year? Contact Mag- base with vintage detailing. The wall-mounted model is
switch today for more information, visit www.magswitch. 31” high and has a 22”-tall scrolled arm that extends 25”, or call (303) 242-7010. from the wall. The matching pole-mounted Shorewood is
44” high. For more information about the Shorewood, or a
free copy of the new Cityscapes product catalog, contact Sun
Valley Lighting at (800) 877-6537 or email: municipalteam@ Visit the website at

CIPPlanner provides fully integrated CPM solution Versatile Walk ‘n’ Roll
CIPPlanner Corporation introduces CIPAce 5.3 with packer/roller
enhanced project management features. CIPAce™ Software See the all-new Series 3
provides a single software platform solution for Capital Walk ‘n’ Roll packer/
Program Management (CPM) on a real-time basis across the roller, the most versatile
organization. The entire life cycle of the capital program and motor grader attached
each capital project under the program, from initialization, compactor on the market
evaluation to completion, is managed under the CIPAce™ today. The Series 3 is available in two sizes: the WR75 has
Software solution. All the historical capital planning and a 75” packing width and five independent walking beams,
analysis information, capital budget, actual and encumbrance and the WR90 has a 90” packing width and six independent
expenditures, project schedules and resources are managed walking beams. A 36” hydraulic side-shift module is available
by one single solution. As more cities and counties employ as an option. The Walk ‘n’ Roll packer/roller attaches to
what has been termed a “continuous planning process” the grader’s rear ripper. No Ripper! No Problem! We offer a
capable of addressing the changes and resultant impacts to Heavy Duty Lift Assembly if your grader doesn’t have a rear
the overall strategic and master plans, there is a greater need ripper. For more information visit us on the Web at www.
for the new project management features of CIPAce 5.3 and The Walk ‘n’ Roll packer/roller is
its fully integrated CPM solution. For more information call Built with Pride in the USA. And distributed exclusively by
(866) 364-8054 or send e-mail to LyCox Enterprises, Inc. – Billings, MT.

68 APWA Reporter February 2008


“We wouldn’t consider buying equipment without using”

Danny Davis, road superintendent for Curry County, New Mexico, visits when soliciting bids
for heavy equipment. “We use it to spec the equipment that will best serve our county,” he says. “We won’t buy
anything without it.” The site includes bid specifications for hundreds of machines, generator sets and work tools,
plus Life Cycle Cost forms and Scheduled Maintenance Calculation forms that can be edited, printed and attached to
RFP documents.

“We expect bidders to fill out Life Cycle Costs to the point that we understand what it will cost to own that machine
whether it’s eight, 10 or 12 years,” explains Davis. With a more complete picture of total ownership costs, the county
can budget accurately, manage expenditures wisely and reduce risk. “Life Cycle Cost is the way to go for us because
we get the best piece of equipment for the taxpayer,” concludes Davis. “That’s why we always go with Caterpillar.”
The National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP), National Association of State Procurement Officials (NASPO) and National Association of Fleet Administrators
(NAFA) endorse the use of Life Cycle Costing as a preferred procurement method.

© 2007 Caterpillar CAT, CATERPILLAR, their respective logos, “Caterpillar Yellow” and the POWER EDGE trade dress, as well as
All Rights Reserved corporate and product identity used herein, are trademarks of Caterpillar and may not be used without permission.
APWA has launched WorkZone with
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