National Association of County Engineers   ~ October 2019
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Update from NACE President Tim Hens

One of the goals of my term is to try and make connections with as many people as possible because I'm a firm believer that NACE is built on relationships. Many of us attend our first annual conference because it's in our home state or because we need professional development to fulfill licensure requirements or just to do our jobs better. However, it's the friends we make at NACE that keep us coming back.

As I write this, I'm on plane heading to Peoria, IL to meet with our friends from the Illinois Association of County Engineers (IACE). In case anyone thought they'd get through one of my updates without mention of my beloved Buffalo Bills, you're wrong. I am actually flying to Illinois from Nashville, as Eve and I made the trip into town for the weekend to watch the Bills beat the Titans and keep their road win streak alive.

September is a relatively quiet month for NACE and most of our state affiliates. I think most of us are getting kids settled into school, sending kids to college or just scrambling at work to complete the summer construction schedule. There are very few conferences, meetings or events to attend; and many state legislatures are not in session. This changes very rapidly in the next few weeks.  


NACE Northeast Region Update    
 
The following was provided to NACE by Kevin Russel, Vice President of the Northeast Region and NACE Executive Committee Member.
  
Northeast Region Update

Leadership is a critical part, arguably the most critical part, of any organization. As County Engineers, all of us exercise some form of leadership in our communities. NACE is an organization comprised of leaders, and it has been my great pleasure working with the other members of the NACE Executive Committee doing the business of NACE during my time as the Northeast Region VP. I rarely, if ever, get to work with such a well-qualified and good-natured group of individuals. It's easy to get discouraged with the goings on of the world today, but it has been invigorating to me through my participation in NACE to see the caliber of people working as County Engineers around the Country, each one doing their part to make their community a better place to call home. I've worked with varied types of leaders in my 20 years of employment in Harrison County, Indiana. Some leaders were leaders in position only, and essentially only along for the ride. 
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Announces Major New Initiative to Support Rural Transportation Needs

 
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao announces initiative to address challenges in rural transportation and infrastructure

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao announced the creation of a major new initiative to support transportation needs in rural America. The initiative, known as the Rural Opportunities to Use Transportation for Economic Success (ROUTES) Initiative, will analyze the Department's discretionary funding and financing opportunities to ensure nationwide outcomes for rural communities' transportation infrastructure. Secretary Chao made the announcement during her remarks at the annual meeting of the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) in St. Louis, Missouri. 
"Rural America, which has a disproportionately high rate of fatalities and is historically neglected, needs to have its transportation needs addressed," said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao.
Read the full press release here
NACE Executive Director on Legislation Aimed at Increasing Rural Road Safety

NACE supports the Bipartisan Fixing America's Bridges and Rural Road Safety Acts


"Here in Buchanan County, we have over a dozen bridges that we need to repair or replace-- but money is tight,and we can't afford to complete all of these critical projects without federal support," said Buchanan County Engineer Brian Keierleber. "I appreciate Congresswoman Finkenauer's work to help Iowa's rural communities get federal funding to fix our structurally-deficient bridges, and I look forward to continuing to work with her to ensure everyone in our county can get around safely."

"Counties maintain nearly 40% of the nation's bridge inventory, and the nation's County Engineers are tasked with ensuring the safety of this vital transportation infrastructure every day," said National Association of County Engineers Executive Director Kevan Stone. "Millions of Americans depend on bridges to bring them to work and school each day while also bringing goods to market, and Congresswoman Finkenauer and Congressman Higgins realize the challenges and costs faced to maintain them. We commend their efforts to bring additional resources to keep them in a state of good repair through the reinstatement of the Highway Bridge Replacement and Rehabilitation Program."

Read the full press release here

"Here in Buchanan County, we're doing everything we can to reduce traffic fatalities-- and it's working but these projects can be expensive," said Buchanan County Engineer Brian Keierleber. "The Rural Road Safety Act will help Iowa's rural counties get federal funding for critical road safety improvements, and I applaud Congresswoman Finkenauer for her efforts to keep all rural road users safe."

"The nation's County Engineers maintain our local roads to ensure public safety, transport goods to market and most importantly, bring our families home safely each day," said National Association of County Engineers Executive Director Kevan Stone. "Congresswoman Finkenauer and Congressman Westerman recognize the crucial importance of safe local roadways, and we commend their efforts to improve and enhance their safety through the High Risk Rural Roads program. We fully support their goal of making sure every county and rural community has the necessary life-saving tools to make these safety improvements a reality."

Read the full press release here


Follow @RepFinkenauer  and @RepWesterman on Twitter for the latest on the Bipartisan Rural Road and Safety Act

Follow @RepFinkenauer and @RepClayHiggins on Twitter for the  latest on the Bipartisan Fixing America's Bridges Act
Webinar Reminder

As a service to our members, NACE indicates this announcement from the Federal Highway Administration
 
FHWA Bridge Bundling Guidebook webinar hosted by ABC-UTC

Bridge bundling is an important ABC planning and programming tool because of the time and cost savings that can be achieved by bundling multiple bridges into a single project. Bundling can lead to shorter duration projects through efficiencies gained in similar work types and coordinated phasing, but it can also accelerate entire bridge programs for owners. FHWA has recently published the Bridge Bundling Guidebook (BBG), a how-to manual that leads users through 10 steps for developing an effective bundling program. The guide includes readily useable tools to assist in delivering bundled projects, including selection criteria, sample contract documents, and case studies. Topics covered include project delivery methods, funding and financing, coalition building, and risk assessment. This webinar will provide an overview of the development and content of the Bridge Bundling Guidebook which can be applied at the project level and program/strategic level. Examples of bridge bundling projects are included.

Register for the webinar  here
  
 
What's New in Washington


Rural Road Safety Act proposes federal funding for critical safety improvements on rural roads
How 'resilience' became a politically safe word for 'climate change'



Job Postings
 
Alabama - Madison County:

Ohio - Portage County:
County Engineer

Check out the rest of the latest job postings from our members here