Election Brings Infrastructure Wins, Opportunity for Improvement

December 2, 2016
ASCE Executive Director Tom Smith

Amid a contentious election season, one thing that the presidential candidates could agree on was the need for major infrastructure upgrades.

President-Elect Trump has proposed financing up to $1 trillion in infrastructure. If invested wisely, $1 trillion would help to curb the $3,400 American families lose each year due to aging infrastructure, while also stimulating our economy and creating jobs.

As part of ASCE’s efforts to urge policymakers at all levels of government, including President-Elect Trump, to make our nation’s infrastructure a priority, we will release our 2017 Report Card for America’s Infrastructure in March, grading 16 categories of infrastructure using the familiar format of a school report card.

This year’s election saw numerous wins in state and local infrastructure ballot initiatives. While some initiatives unfortunately fell short, Illinois and New Jersey became the 31st and 32nd states to vote in favor of dedicating their fuel tax revenue to transportation projects. Meanwhile, Maine voted to approve a transportation bond measure for many infrastructure areas, including roadways, bridges, airports, ports, rail, and transit.

Funding for public transit saw varying success across the country. Metro Atlanta approved a sales tax increase of $2.5 billion over the next 40 years to fund its public transit system, MARTA. In California, San Francisco passed public transit systems aid, but similar measures were defeated in San Luis Obispo, Sacramento, and San Diego. A vote on increasing the millage rate to fund the Regional Transit Authority of Southeast Michigan was also defeated.

Your votes secured some important wins. We urge you to continue working with your elected officials to help restore America’s infrastructure.





In case you missed them, here are some other exciting developments around the ASCE community:

Meet the 5 career achievers honored with 2017 OPAL Awards

The Society’s annual Outstanding Projects And Leaders awards are among the highest tributes a civil engineer can achieve. Annually, we choose five winners for their success in construction, design, education, government, or management. ASCE has named the 2017 honorees who will receive their awards at the Society’s OPAL Gala in March. Here are the OPAL winners.

Get primed to Dream Big for Engineers Week 2017 with archived webcast

By now we know it will be huge in more ways than one, but how can professionals make the most of the premiere of Dream Big: Engineering Our World during Engineers Week 2017? A special webcast at the Maryland Science Center introduced the range of outreach activities behind the film and interviewed two of Dream Big’s engineering stars, one of whom is ASCE member Menzer Pehlivan. See the archived webcast.

Discover 5 essential green-engineering innovations for your next project

Since ASCE cofounded the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure in 2011, projects achieving an Envision designation have ranged from a sustainable streetcar system to a park that uses art to recycle pond water. Are you working on a project with sustainability applications like these? ASCE News has compiled five Envision designees that offer inspiration.

Here’s why it pays to know about business development

For a recent edition of his Ask Anthony career advice feature, Anthony Fasano shares valuable perspectives on why today’s civil engineers should know about business development. He offers five ways to bring in new clients or enhance relationships with current ones in a post to ASCE News. Explore more of Fasano’s advice in his archive at the ASCE News Careers & Leadership page.

Say ‘I’m in’ to support ASCE’s drive to slash life-cycle costs 5 percent

Civil engineers around the world have begun taking a pledge to support ASCE’s goal of cutting infrastructure life-cycle costs in half by 2025. A new ASCE Grand Challenge website encourages professionals to support the initiative by clicking an “I’m in!” button. While there, visitors can share relevant professional experiences, follow updates on outreach projects, and more. The site’s resources include an outreach toolkit, a graphic on “closing the infrastructure gap,” and more. Are you in?

Plan your winter getaway and earn as many as 42 PDHs

ASCE Week Orlando is a great way to build up the PDHs you need for license renewal. Making the deal sweeter is the opportunity to take a behind-the-scenes tour of Walt Disney World. Coming in March, ASCE Week offers the convenience of 12 seminars in one place. Registering now gives you the deepest discounts – as much as $1,100 on two seminars or up to $450 off one course. Check out the seminar list online and register today.

Find a speaker for your next local meeting or volunteer to be one

ASCE’s Online Speakers Bureau database offers a roster of members willing to share insights and expertise with fellow professionals. The Online Speakers Bureau also invites potential speakers to sign up and provide details on what they can offer. Sign up to be a speaker or find one for your next ASCE meeting or event.

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