Top 10 Reasons to Attend Congress in Anaheim 2012!

 
10.  Enjoy a fantastic, sunny, host city with perfect temperatures located only a few miles from the ocean and right next to the House of the Mouse (discounted twilight tickets available). Take a dip in the ocean or a ride on the Matterhorn!

9.  Be awed by an outstanding keynote speaker each day giving insight, motivation, inspiration and images for public works in the future.  

8.  Experience the Expo with more than 400 exhibitors, 36 exhibitor product presentations, power learning sessions, happy hour and daily prize drawings.

7.  Take advantage of more than a dozen networking opportunities to meet, network, and learn from your colleagues including golf, tennis, get acquainted party, first-timers session, and more!

6.  Discover the latest uses of technologies in public works such as Apps for public works, GPS, Social Media, and more in the all new Technology Pavilion.

5.  Enjoy a great dinner or a night out with your chapter colleagues at one of Anaheim’s finest restaurants or hot spots.

4.  Expand your professional social networks through LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and others.

3.  Experience face-to-face learning (not watching a computer screen) in your choice of more than 125 education sessions covering the breadth of public works.

2.  Tour some of Anaheim’s best public works facilities and engineering projects.

1. Get away from the everyday headaches of the office or the field and re-energize your mind and spirit!
 

From high-tech, to high impact, experience the latest innovations and solutions that will have you "Walking on Sunshine!"


 

This article originally appeared in the June 2012 issue of the APWA Reporter.

Attending the APWA Congress Pays Dividends


City of Newport winning sidewalk liability battle

After years of struggling with frequent and expensive bodily injury claims from individuals falling on city sidewalks, the City of Newport is reversing that trend with the help of innovations discovered at the APWA Congress. In 2009, William R. Riccio, Jr., P.E., PWLF, Director of Public Services for the City of Newport, Rhode Island, attended the APWA Congress in Columbus, Ohio, after receiving a risk management scholarship provided by the Rhode Island Interlocal Risk Management Trust, the City of Newport’s insurance provider.
 
After one year with the City, Riccio noticed an alarming rate of claims associated with “trips and falls” along sidewalks; it was obvious that the City was not viewing this matter comprehensively. Shortly after attending Congress, Riccio was presented a sidewalk liability analysis by the City’s insurance provider which confirmed the startling numbers which indicated that the City of Newport had averaged 9.4 claims per year which translated into monetary claims in excess of $800,000. For the City of Newport, finding a way to reduce liability exposure in the midst of tough economic times and tight municipal budgets required us to think outside the box.
 
As Riccio indicates, “We began by establishing an aggressive sidewalk inspection and maintenance program. With the assistance of engineering interns, we were able to catalogue the scope and magnitude of the problem at hand. As we attempted to develop a sustainable program, we quickly realized that sidewalk panel replacement could only be a part of the solution. Most of the claims were located within the most heavily traveled pedestrian ways in this internationally-acclaimed seaside tourist community. Although we had to focus on the immediate matter at hand, we also needed to develop a program that would be able to be implemented throughout the entire city.”
 
Riccio recalled meeting a vendor on the exhibit floor in Columbus whom Riccio thought might be able to provide another piece of the puzzle. The vendor was hopeful that they might have the answer that would help Riccio get control of the problem. The vendor arranged a demonstration of the sidewalk panel cutting service, and Riccio was immediately sold on its applicability. As he notes, “Over the past two seasons we have been able to get control of the situation, by eliminating more then 350 trip hazards from our pedestrian ways which has resulted in a 50% decrease in the frequency of our sidewalk-related claims.” The City of Newport’s risk provider is amazed at the results of this seemingly simple yet innovative solution for which they recently awarded the City of Newport the Thomas Sweeney Innovation Award for Risk Management.
 
“It is my hope that these initiatives have also helped to reduce our insurance premiums,” Riccio said. “Had I not attended Congress in 2009, I am not sure where we would be right now but the rewards have been realized and I have not missed a Congress since.”
 
You just never know where or when you will meet that person or company that can help you to develop or to implement a solution to a long-standing need. Get involved in Congress and always remember that your issue is likely not unique to your municipality. There is always an answer to a question and at Congress it is usually easy to find.