November 2017

Attending TACERA. What a Welcome as the Newest NACE VP!

 By Todd Kinney, PE
       Clinton County, Iowa

On October 17-19 I had the opportunity to attend the Texas Association of County Engineers & Road Administrators (TACERA) Annual Conference. The conference was held at the Wyndham Riverwalk Hotel in San Antonio, Texas.

Attending this meeting was one of my first “official” duties as NACE South Central Regional Vice President.

Needless to say I was a little apprehensive about going to Texas to attend their conference and give an update on NACE. Any anxiety I had quickly disappeared thanks to the kindness shown to me by Tony Vasquez, Texas NACE Director at Large, and Bryan Neaves, TACERA 2016-2017 President. In fact, the hospitality of everyone I met was truly overwhelming.

The two and half days were filled with technical sessions (two separate tracks to choose from) ranging from base stabilization, HMA mix types, weed control, ethics, communication with public, pavement rehabilitation, dam issues and finally hurricane Harvey. It seems like wherever you go there is common ground in some of the challenges we face.

Two of these that resonated with me were dealing with high plasticity index soils and weed control. The presentation on the affects of hurricane Harvey was very interesting and the sheer volume of water that they had to deal with is hard to fathom for this Iowa farm boy. I was also very surprised to hear that some roads are actually constructed from crushed shells.

I find there is a calming and reassuring effect that comes from discussing our unique and common issues we all must cope with on a daily basis with your peers at a state meeting, NACE committee meeting or a NACE conference. NACE members are really great people and their collective experience and knowledge is an unbelievable resource.

I believe that supporting and learning from each other is one of the biggest benefits gained from being a member of NACE. The more you get involved with NACE the bigger the benefit!

One last thing … The National Center for Pavement Preservation is trying to collect information regarding agency experience levels with pavement preservation techniques and areas of interest for additional training.

Please take a couple minutes and provide your valuable input. The survey is a short 5 questions.

I want to wish everyone a joyful holiday season! I hope you take the time to appreciate all blessings we have in our lives.


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