NSPE Gateway to Government July/August 2009
In This Issue of PEG e-News...

2009 PEGASUS Winner Recognized

Amy Horst Ruggeri, P.E., was announced as the 2009 PEGASUS winner. The Professional Engineer in Government Achievement and Service in the United States Award recognizes the engineer who has made the most outstanding contribution to the advancement and practice of engineering.

Horst Ruggeri is a native of Springfield, Missouri. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Missouri-Rolla (now Missouri University of Science & Technology) with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering in 1990 and then earned Master of Science in Civil Engineering in 1991. Horst Ruggeri has worked in various departments at City Utilities of Springfield, Missouri since graduation, and is currently a plant engineer at Southwest Power Station. She became licensed in 1995 and is a past president of the Mid-Missouri Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Ozark Chapter of the Missouri Society of Professional Engineers. Horst Ruggeri has been active on several local and state committees in MSPE. 

To learn more about the PEGASUS Award, please visit the NSPE Web site.

Navy Brings Auto Engineers Aboard

NAVSEA, the Naval Sea Systems Command, is helping ease the burden of displaced auto engineers by transitioning them into careers as civilian military employees. NAVSEA started their program by hiring about 50 engineers for its Naval Aquisition Association Program. This two-year career training program will give participants on the job training. NAVSEA is also reaching out to other engineering and science communities to fill its skills gap through national regional and local events. Over 2,000 new employees are needed. 

For the full article, read the July 2009 issue of PE magazine.

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Florida Atlantic University Finds Ocean Holds Energy Source

Florida Atlantic University’s Center for Ocean Energy Technology (COET) has deployed Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers (ADCPs) moorings in the Atlantic Ocean off the east coast of Florida. The deployment of ADCP will enable researchers to gather baseline information which is needed to characterize in detail the spatial and temporal variability of the Gulf Stream, the most energy dense ocean current, for its potential use as an abundant renewable energy source.

“The deployment of the ADCPs is a major milestone for Florida Atlantic University, and our research and development efforts to utilize energy from the Gulf Stream as a source of renewable energy,” says FAU President Frank T. Brogan. “We are very proud of our researchers at the Center for Ocean Energy Technology, and our academic, industry, and government partners for helping us move closer to providing a better quality of life for Florida’s citizens and beyond.”

As part of the regulatory approval cycle, COET received authorization from the Army Corps of Engineers under a nationwide permit to deploy the ADCPs in the Atlantic Ocean. COET is working together with FAU’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute and industry, government, and academic partners to develop an integrated system approach toward environmental, ecological, resource and power system assessment, and risk avoidance to ensure that all elements related to harnessing open-ocean access energy research and development are addressed and understood. [ return to top ]

House Passes DOT/HUD Spending Bill

The House recently passed the Department of Transportation and Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act for the fiscal year 2010. The bill provides $123.1 billion in critical transportation and housing investments. 

Highlights of the transportation section include:
• $3.5 billion for airport modernization, safety, and efficiency grants.
• $41.1 billion to improve and repair highway infrastructure.
• $10.48 billion for the Federal Transit Administration.
• $4 billion for high speed passenger rail.
• $1.2 billion for aviation safety programs to hire additional flight standard inspectors and aircraft certification inspection staff.
• $99.2 million to provide additional investigators to respond to and investigate transportation crashes.
• $1.5 billion to support Amtrak, the national passenger rail system.

Highlights of the Housing and Urban Development section include:
• $8.7 billion for affordable housing to 1.3 million low-income families and individuals, two-thirds of whom are elderly or disabled. 
• $1 billion to rehabilitate and build housing for low-income seniors.
• $196.5 million to provide counseling for families in danger of foreclosure. 
• $75 million to provide 10,000 housing vouchers to homeless veterans. 
• $70 million to offer prospective homebuyers assistance.

This bill will now move to the Senate for their consideration and approval.  [ return to top ]

Audit Raises Questions About Wisconsin DOT's Use of Consultants

According to state auditors, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's heavy use of consulting engineers rather than state engineers may have hampered oversight as well as increased costs on state highway project. 

Although auditors found no issue with the structural soundness of the highway construction, they did find that in over 50% of projects reviewed, contractors conducted measurements less frequently than required in the contacts or failed to record their measurements. It was also found that WDOT could have saved $1.2 million over 16 months if they had used state engineers over consultants. WDOT is supposed to first assign state construction engineers to oversee projects and then use consulting firms to help meet required staffing levels or provided additional expertise. 

Due to longstanding concerns about DOT practices concerning consultants have lead to changes in its quality assurance practices. Construction engineers are now instructed to closely observe contractors taking measurements, and documenting measurements electronically to ensure stimulus funds are being used according to contractual requirements. 

For the full article read the July 2009 issue of PE magazine.
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2009-10 PEG Executive Board Contact Information

Louise Carosi Doyle, P.E.

Sandra Knight, P.E., F.NSPE, M.ASCE

John Cardarelli II, Ph.D., P.E.

Immediate Past Chair & BOD Representative
Tim Madhanagopal, P.E., BCEE, F.NSPE

Northeastern Regional Vice Chair
David Alan Janover, P.E.

Southeastern Regional Vice Chair
D. Scott Wolf, P.E., PLS

Central Regional Vice Chair
Kirankumar Topudurti, Ph.D., P.E.

Southwest Regional Vice Chair
Mark Dubbin, P.E.

Western & Pacific Regional Vice Chair
Michael Simpson, P.E.

North Central Regional Vice Chair
Gary J. Pendergrass, P.E., RG

Young Engineer Representative
D. Scott Wolf, P.E., PLS


NSPE Regions

Central Region

Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia, Wisconsin

North Central Region

Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota

Northeast Region

Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont

Southeast Region

Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia

Southwest Region

Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Wyoming

Western Region

Alaska, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington  [ return to top ]

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