APWA AZ Newsletter 2017 May

APWA AZ Newsletter 2017 May

NEWSLETTER                                                                                                                                                                      MAY 2017


May 8, 2017
Statewide Conference Committee Meeting
More Info >

May 9, 2017
Prescott Valley Group Luncheon
More Info >

May 11, 2017
Programs Committee Meeting
More Info >

May 11, 2017
Spring Joint Association Mixer
More Info >

May 12, 2017
APWA NAB Trap Tournament
More Info >

May 17, 2017
More Info >

May 17, 2017
APWA May Luncheon
More Info >

May 25, 2017
Education and Training Committee Meeting
More Info >

August 2-4, 2017
Statewide Conference
More Info >


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Congratulations to David Fabiano, Town Engineer for the Town of Gilbert. David was selected as one of APWA National Top Ten Public Works Leaders of the Year. The Top Ten Public Works Leaders of the Year recognizes the outstanding career service achievements of individual public works professionals. David will be celebrated by the Town of Gilbert on May 4th at a special Gilbert Town Council Meeting, and at PWX APWA National Conference in Orlando in August. Thank you David for all your contributions to the Arizona Chapter.

This month, May 21-27 is National Public Works Week. For those of us who work in the industry, it is a time to appreciate all the men and women who contribute so much to assure a higher quality of life in our communities.  

Since 1960, APWA has sponsored National Public Works Week. Across North America, our more than 29,000 members in the U.S. and Canada use this week to energize and educate the public on the importance of public works: planning, building, managing, and operating at the heart of their local communities to improve everyday quality of life.

APWA encourages public works agencies and professionals to take the opportunity to make their stories known in their communities. The National Public Works Week How-To Guide is one of several resources the Association makes available to agencies to assist them in the development and implementation of their own individual celebrations.

Here are a few ideas how your company or municipality can celebrate the Week. 

Environmental Campaign: organize a tree planting ceremony or trash pickup at a neighborhood park.

Public Works Exhibit: Arrange to display an exhibit at libraries, community centers, and shopping malls.

Employee Appreciation Day: Acknowledge the many accomplishments public works employees contribute throughout the year with a special recognition event.

Outreach to Schools: A T-Shirt Design Contest encourages students to be creative while they learn about public works.

APWA Arizona Chapter Events for May: 
May 9th    – Northern Branch Luncheon in Prescott – Topic: CIP Updates
May 11th – Joint Mixer at Pedal Haus, Tempe, AZ
May 12th – Northern Branch Trap Shooting Tournament, Prescott Trap & Skeet Club, Dewey, AZ
May 17th – State Chapter Board Meeting & Luncheon – Topic: CIP Update
June 15th  - Is the deadline for Student Scholarship Application 
******      The Statewide Conference Vendor Booth, Attendee and Hotel Registration is open now!  Check the website for Event & Conference registration details. 

Loretta Flick

APWA Luncheon Programs:

May 17, 2017
Rebekah Morris will give a presentation on the upcoming CIP’s for various state local and county agencies

June 21, 2017
Susan Duncan will give a presentation on ADA Guidelines and the issues that PW Departments and Consultants have to navigate

Public Works Institute Training
June 12 -14, 2017

Looking to gain an understanding of the interworking of Public Works? Are you a Public Works Agency employee looking for a higher degree of leadership and management skills? If you answered yes to either of these questions or know of someone who could benefit from these situations, then APWA’s Public Works Institute (PWI) is for you.

The program consists of four modules, that when taken in their entirety, will offer you a better understanding of Public Works with essential skills needed to advance in supervisory and management positions. It is not a requirement to take the sessions in any particular order. 

Modules consist of                                                                          

  • Basic supervision
  • Advanced supervision
  • Public works management
  • Advanced management topics

Subject Units interspersed among Modules

  • Supervisory Techniques and skills
  • Basic Management skills
  • Communication skills
  • Leadership skills
  • Community Service/Customer Orientation skills
  • Impact of law on public works
  • Fundamentals of government
  • Finance
  • Resource Management Skills
  • Public Works Operations
  • Creating the Future

Each module is a three-day course of instruction. At the end of the 90 total hours, completion is recognized with a Certificate of Completion awarded by Arizona Public Works Institute and National APWA. Module Two is scheduled for June 12 - 14. View the event details and registration at: http://arizona.apwa.net/EventDetails/10256

2017 APWA Statewide Conference
Leadership in Infrastructure: Motivate, Innovate, Elevate
August 2-4, 2017, at the Hilton El Conquistador, Tucson, AZ

Don't miss the 2017 Arizona Chapter APWA Statewide Conference where members and non-members can exchange information, socialize, and learn from each other and technical experts.  Visit the conference website for information and registration. www.azapwaconference.com


  • This year’s conference theme is “Leadership in Infrastructure: Motivate, Innovate, Elevate” and our goal is to provide attendees with many opportunities to learn, network, and become more effective leaders of our industry.
  • Our keynote speaker is JJ Birden, former NFL wide receiver and now leadership and opportunity trainer. His keynote is titled “How to Lead and Perform at the Highest Level”. Whether you are a football fan or not, JJ will inspire and motivate you to be your best in business and in your personal life.
  • We are going to have a lot of fun and eat a lot of good food (seriously, this conference offers more food and beverages than any other conference in our industry). The Thursday night “Fun Night” will be an indoor/outdoor luau with food, entertainment, lawn games, prizes, and more. Hawaiian attire is recommended but not required.
  • Thursday will be full of educational sessions on a wide variety of topics and Friday will feature a new and exciting agency/owner networking program where you will get updates from all over the state and opportunities to connect with decision makers (more details to come).
  • Enjoy the hotel’s newly renovated rooms for only $89 per night, the same price they have been since 2014.
  • Exhibit booths are all 8x10 and we have added more booths than last year. Reserve your space today. Booths selection is on a first come basis. See the exhibitor map for available spaces.

Special thanks to those firms that have already registered as sponsors and exhibitors:

  • Platinum Sponsors


  • Gold Sponsors



  • Continental Breakfast and Break Sponsors


  • Public Agency Sponsors

    Achen-Gardner Construction
    Civiltec Engineering
    Dibble Engineering
    E&A Consulting Group, Inc.

  • Exhibitors

    Accurate Corrosion Control Inc. (ACCI)
    Achen-Gardner Construction
    Aerotech Mapping
    AMEC Foster Wheeler
    Asphalt Zipper
    Building Products Company
    Burgess & Niple
    CADsoft Consulting
    Civiltec Engineering
    DBA Construction, Inc.
    Dibble Engineering
    E & A Consulting Group
    Forterra Pipe & Precast
    HDA Architects, LLC
    Hobas Pipe USA
    Holbrook Asphalt
    Michael Baker International
    Neenah Enterprises
    Olsson Associates
    Project Engineering Consultants
    Regional Pavement Maintenance
    Rinker Materials
    Rummel Construction
    Sunrise Engineering
    TechSolutions Consultants
    Workplace Safety Specialists
    Zumar Industries

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to:

Practicing Young Professionals Committee

The Practicing Young Professionals committee reaches out to younger members of the public works field in order to strengthen the future of the industry. The committee puts on educational lunches on the future of the industry at municipal offices and networking events in order to encourage both public and private practicing young professionals on career development.

Please contact Cory Steele, Committee Chair for more information; cory.steele@strand.com

On Tuesday March 28th, 2017, the Phoenix Branch Young Professional Committee put on a Lunch and Learn at the City of Phoenix’s Design and Construction Management Division. The topic of the Lunch and Learn was Completing the Streets with Green Roads. Nineteen people attended the event and enjoyed the chance to converse with other young professionals in the public works field. 

New Member Spotlight

Name and Title: Ryan Kelly – Account Manager with AeroTech Mapping

With APWA Since: April 2017

Describe your job responsibilities: My job responsibilities include management, sales, and building relationships with our customers to understand and provide for their photogrammetric needs.

What was your favorite project to work on in the last 10 years? My favorite project was working on the Arizona State University Sun Devil Stadium Renovation. Our team delivered 1”=40’ scale topographic mapping (with 1’ contours) and a color digital orthphotography with a .25’ pixel resolution of the facilities.  

Where have your travels taken you? My travels have taken me from Chibougamau, Canada to Lahaina, Maui and many places in between.

Name one thing not many people know about you: I am colorblind.

New Members

Anna E. JanuszStaff Materials EngineerWestern Technologies Inc
Ryan Kelly, CPAccount MgrAerotech Mapping Technologies
Amy C. Murray, CSMMarketing DirectorRon Turley Associates
Debbie ParkinsBusiness DevelopmentWestern Technologies Inc
Randy Philip WeyrauchVice PresidentNFra Inc

Why Your Investment In Project Management Training Will Fail And
How You Can Make It Successful

Michael S. Ellegood, PSMJ Resources

A very wise boss I once worked for said, “The only way a consulting engineering firm can be successful is if its project managers are successful.” Understanding this at least intrinsically, many of us, company leaders, have made the investment in project management training for our PM’s and perhaps those who aspire to be PMs.

Chances are this investment won’t work out as planned and it will be business as usual in a few short days or weeks.  What happened and how can we make this not insubstantial investment pay off?

According to Art Petty, a Chicago based management consultant (art.petty@artpetty.com), big, bold strategies often fail for a combination of causes endemic to a corporate environment.  In fact, he lists them from A to Z here, (https://artpetty.com/2017/02/19/succeed-change/), I have selected a few that I think are particularly applicable to our industry.

  • “Had managers who gave it lip service but did not take it seriously”:  Too often, younger less experienced project managers, participate in the training, return to the office eager to apply the newly learned skills only to be discouraged by more senior managers who were “too busy to attend training” and did not buy into the training.  “I’ve been managing projects for 20 years, not much they can tell me!”
  • “Did not understand why it was needed”:  Design professionals too often get caught up in the design aspects and overlook the primary goal – to deliver a project on time and on budget with satisfied stakeholders while making a profit for the company and establishing the firm as a “trusted advisor”.  PM reporting and protocols just get in the way.
  • Could not connect their daily jobs to the strategy and so they quit trying:  Learning to use project management skills is often difficult.  While trying to solve complex technical issues, keep the often-demanding clients happy, and juggling the diverse personalities of the design team, effective PM protocols and tools drift into the distant background. 
  • Decided to take a wait and see approach just in case it was another flavor-of-the-month initiative: Perhaps more common in public agencies or in larger more corporate organizations this arm’s length view reflects a skepticism that PM tools and protocols are just ephemeral – “ignore it and it will eventually go away”.

These are just four of the 26 causes cited by the very excellent Art Petty article.  Many more are doubtless applicable as well.  But now we made the investment, and the investment was costly both in terms of out of pocket and in the lost billable time that our key staff spent in the training, how do we make this investment worthwhile?  How do we achieve a return on our investment?  How do we prove Art Petty wrong?

Some Tips:

  • Before the training even starts, before decisions are made, get a cross section of staff together and discuss the need for improved project management within the organization.  This makes the decision more collaborative and less “top down” (My boss told me to go, that’s why I’m here”)
  • Insist that all levels of management engage in the training.  Not just the junior people but the middle and senior managers as well.  In the most effective organization, the senior management including the CEO participate as well.  This sends a clear message to all that “We’re serious about improving our project delivery?”  Note:  we offer a complimentary executive level mini-course as an adjunct to our public-sector PM training, yet few executives seem to have the time to avail themselves of the training.
  • Manage the implementation as you would any major initiative.  Do not try to do everything at once, instead, set up a schedule to implement, start with the easy stuff then move on to the more complex protocols but set up a schedule and measure progress.
  • Evaluate progress just as you would progress on a project.  Ask “Where are we?”, “What’s next?”; “What are the issues?”, “How is it working for us?”

Having made a significant investment in the training, let’s make this work.  And, let’s make project delivery better than it now is.  Good luck.

Signal Butte Water Treatment Plant 

John Brobeck, City of Mesa Supervising Engineer

When completed; the Signal Butte Water Treatment Plant (SBWTP) will be the second plant owned and operated by the City of Mesa.

The SBWTP is being built to accommodate increasing demand for water caused by new development in the City; most of which is from building in southeast Mesa. Based on current demand projections the SBWTP has been designed to treat 24 MGD and accommodate a future expansion to 48 MGD. The plant is designed to treat water from the Central Arizona Project (CAP) canal and is being constructed using the construction manager at risk (CMAR) process.

The designer and contract manager for the project is Black & Veatch and the CMAR is Sundt Construction. Both firms have extensive experience with water treatment plants.

The total programmed amount for this project is $127M. The construction contract included two guaranteed maximum price (GMP) components for a total of $104M. The contract duration is 745 days. The notice to proceed was issued on July 28, 2016 and requires Sundt Construction to have the plant approved to introduce water into the City water system no later than May 4, 2018.

The project was broken into 2 GMP’s to expedite the construction for meeting the water demand, reduce construction cost, and allow the contractor to procure critical long lead time equipment. GMP-1 scope included constructing the concrete portion of the treatment complex and recovered water basin structures, yard process piping, site work, and procurement of long lead-time items. Gmp-2 is for the balance of the work required to complete the full plant.  All procurement through the CMAR used a best value approach for the selection of equipment, materials, and subcontractors. This allowed the City to select systems that have the best lifecycle cost.

The plant utilizes the following state-of-the-art processes resulting in the smallest “footprint” to treat the water:

  • Raw Water Intake - Metering and Control from the CAP canal. The water travels three miles to the plant metering and control structure. This raw water line is a separate project currently under construction.
  • Ozone with Contact Basins - Reduces treatment chemicals, improves settling and filterability, and removes taste and odor.
  • Ballasted Flocculation - Rapidly removes particles by weighing them down with silica sand.
  • Deep-Bed Monomedia Filtration - Removes viruses, bacteria, and particulates as small as one micron. These operate as a biological treatment process to reduce total organic compounds (TOC).
  • Reservoir and Finished Water Pumping Station - Delivers potable drinking water to Mesa customers in three pressure zones.
  • Recovered Water - Water used to clean particles from the filters is separated and recycled.
  • Belt Filter Press – Used to remove water from sludge and eliminating the requirement for drying beds.

Below is a 3D rendering of the plant.

2017 Scholarships

The Arizona Chapter of the American Public Works Association, in keeping with its objectives, will award one or more $1,500 scholarships for 2017. Scholarships are presented to deserving students striving to complete educational requirements for a career path in public works. Degrees or Majors in Public Administration, Civil or Environmental Engineering, Public Works and Water Resources Technology Programs are examples of related fields of study. Career objectives may be in the public or private sector, but in either case must be associated directly or indirectly with public works matters or agencies.  The deadline for the application is June 15, 2017.

Please click here to see the application for more detailed information.  

Please direct questions to:

Gregory B Smith, PE/PS, ENV_SP
Arizona Chapter
APWA Scholarship Committee

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