Drawing upon his 15 years of research, Collins will weave together stories and examples that illustrate the principles and encourage attendees to consider how they can apply them within their own spans of responsibility to create a pocket of greatness.
After the opening event, attendees will have the opportunity to participate in timely workshops on hot topics in the hot-mix asphalt (HMA) industry. HMA producers, contractors and equipment suppliers from around the world will be on hand for the general sessions featuring exceptional speakers who will address current industry issues and future trends.
Need for NEPA REFORM
Lawyer remarks to American Bar Association
A U.S. House of Representatives task force established to consider reforms to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) has put forward several important proposals that could help ensure decisions made by federal, state and local government agencies to add new highway capacity are not subject to endless legal challenge, an American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) staff attorney said June 2.
ARTBA's Nick Goldstein delivered his remarks before an American Law Institute/American Bar Association environmental litigation conference in San Francisco. He was part of a panel analyzing the recent draft report by the House task force, which contained more than 20 recommendations for updating NEPA.
NEPA is a 1969 law that regulates the environmental review process all transportation projects must undergo before construction can begin. NEPA's original intent was to protect the environment by ensuring the public has a role in the federal decision-making process and in minimizing the environmental impacts that result from federal activities. Provisions in the law, however, have been increasingly used by anti-growth groups to shut down or delay transportation improvement projects.
Goldstein said the NEPA task force report contained a number of valuable ideas for improvement, such as eliminating duplicative reviews and curbing excessive and frivolous environmental litigation. The report calls for establishing lead agencies for conducting environmental reviews and a 180-day time limit for filing project-related NEPA lawsuits. Such a statute of limitations, Goldstein said, would lead to more certainty in the transportation planning and help speed the delivery of highway improvement projects.
Goldstein also highlighted a number of the positive environmental reforms ARTBA worked to achieve in the 2005 federal highway and transit program reauthorization bill, SAFETEA-LU.
Online Training for Asphalt Industry
Pavia Systems offers education on the web
Using its online learning management software, Pavia Systems allows users to manage their own learning while employers track their process from the web.
The Pavia Online Training Center offers a host of system features designed to effectively manage and track users through the training process. Features include:
- Quizzes. Each course contains online quizzes to track learning and measure progress.
- Certificates. Once a course is completed, users can print a certificate to verify completion.
- Supplemental resources. Additional materials such as handouts and PowerPoint presentations are available.
- Multilingual delivery. Courses can be produced in other languages.
Contractor Awarded "Best of the Best"
Ace Asphalt recognized for workplace safety
Ace Asphalt of Arizona Inc. has been honored with the 2005 "Best of the Best" Business Award for Workplace Safety from SCF Arizona. The award recognizes innovation, financial investment and rigorous training commitments in improving on-the-job safety and security and in reducing the number of injuries and time lost by employees.
After being honored as a nominee for this award in 2004, Ace Asphalt recognized the opportunity to improve its safety practices this year.
"We knew what we had to do to achieve this and we put the right things into place in order to accomplish this goal," says Scott Montanye, safety manager for Ace Asphalt. "We've really worked hard and are using this as a benchmark for continued success in this area."