December 2017 Print

President's Message

Well, here we are; it’s already December and we’re heading into a new year. There is a stark contrast between now and where we were during the 2008 recession. We are all living through an exciting time to be a Civil Engineer. Projects are being funded, innovation is prolific, and quality engineers are in demand. I think we have a great deal to be proud of and thankful for.

So, let’s pass some of our good fortune on. Please seriously consider contributing to our Golze Scholarship. Our hard-working scholarship committee was able to raise over $70,000 for scholarships last year through the generous donations of your members and their companies.  Please help us push our mission to the next level as we strive to help deserving students afford college. With looming taxes on graduate stipends and student loans while tuition costs continue to climb, students need our help now more than at any time in recent history.

In addition to the Golze Scholarship, your Sacramento Section leadership team is ramping up its efforts to develop a new Infrastructure Report Card. As I’m sure most of you are aware, this document is used at the highest levels of government to lobby for infrastructure improvement. Although many public projects are moving forward with an improved economy, we will need significant future funding to restore, replace, and build our roads, rails, airports, sewers, seaports, energy facilities or whatever it is you design, build, manage, maintain or simply use. We are therefore looking for individuals in both the public and private sectors to help us develop the report card or provide us valuable insight.  Please contact David Schwegel to help.   

Your Sacramento Section Board appreciates all that you do to advance our profession.  Please join us as we accelerate into the new year.     

Kind Regards, 

Adam J. Killinger, PE, GE
Sacramento Section President 2017-2018

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Calendar of Events

EWRI Networking Meeting 

Topic: Winter Forecast & Storm Tracking Technology
Claim Jumper
1111 J Street
Sacramento, CA

YMF Holiday Party

Bring a toy!
Old Spaghetti Factory
1910 J. Street
Sacramento, CA

EWB Holiday Party

All Welcome
Please email Ashley Martin for location

WRYMC 2018

Registration Open
Hilton Lake Las Vegas Nevada
1610 Lake Las Vegas Pkwy
Henderson, NV

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Call For Nominations - Project Awards


It's that time of year again to begin to think about the most outstanding projects within the Sacramento Section from the past year.  The categories of projects include: Airports & Ports, Bikeways & Trails, Community Involvement, Energy, Flood Management, Historical Renovation, Road & Highway, Structural, Transportation, Water, Architectural Engineering, Bridge, Construction, Environmental Engineering, Geotechnical, Parks & Recreation, Small Project (under $5M), Sustainable Engineering, Urban/Land Development, and Wastewater Treatment. PROJECTS NOMINATED MUST BE COMPLETED BY 2017.

Please CLICK HERE to nominate. The Project Award Banquet is tentatively scheduled for April 2018.  Stay tuned for more announcements! 

If you have any questions, please contact Senior Director, Tony Quintrall at

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Golze Scholarship Fund


Did you know the Sacramento Section Golze Scholarship Fund is one of the largest ASCE scholarship funds in the nation? Please join us in helping meet our goal to raise $100,000 for the Golze Scholarship Fund. Your donation will be matched up to $20,000 by former ASCE Section president Louay Owaidat. 

Last spring through your generous individual and corporate donations, we were able to award 21 aspiring civil engineers from UC Davis, CSU Sacramento, CSU Chico and University of Pacfic. 

Your participation in this is vital. If each member donates a little, we will have the greatest impact in our community. Donators will be recognized publicly in our newsletter and at the awards dinner. To donate, click here


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ASCE America’s Infrastructure Report Card


Region 9 is producing a Statewide Report Card while mentoring us on our section Report Card. These publications will be trademarks of ASCE and will be essential for our profession's formatting, messaging, and quality control standards. 

Region 9 needs subject matter experts from our section step forward to provide and analyze local data, which in turn will be usable for our local Report Card. Region 9 in turn will mentor us through ASCE’s new Report Card process, and provide assistance with our local Report Card as needed. For more information on the Report Card process in general, please click here to see the Infrastructure Report Card Training presentation that ASCE has prepared for our section.

To get the process rolling, the following milestones have been established:

  • Week of December 11 2017: First Region 9 Kick-Off Meeting for early recruits 

  • Week of December 18 2017: Second Region 9 Kick-Off Meeting for recruits 

  • January 2018: 30-minute Section Report Card Meeting before Section Officers Meeting to discuss Report Card instructions from Society

  • Week of January 22, 2018: Third Region 9 Kick-Off Meeting for late recruits 

  • First Quarter 2019: Statewide Report Card Release

  • First-Second Quarter 2019: Section Report Card Release in Connection with the 150th Anniversary Celebration of the Transcontinental Railroad

We need volunteers to get actively engaged in these collaborative efforts. To join the Sacramento Section Report Card effort, please email David Schwegel at or (425)466-5677. To join the Region 9 Report Card effort, please email Tony Akel at

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Member Spotlight

Every year in September, officer, members, and guests of the Sacramento Section of ASCE gather for our annual Installation and Awards Dinner. An important part of the festivities is the presentation of awards offered by our Section for outstanding individual achievement. Each month, in this column, we will spotlight one or two of these award-winning engineers. 

2017 Outstanding Younger Civil Engineer Award Winner 

Shawn Leyva

Shawn Leyva is a Project Engineer at Crawford & Associates, Inc. in Sacramento, CA. His professional experience includes planning, coordinating, and managing geotechnical field explorations. As Project Engineer, Leyva has provided geotechnical recommendations for infrastructure rehabilitation or improvement projects including bridge investigations, road/pavement reconstruction, pipelines, and water/wastewater treatment structures. Leyva served in the United States Air Force from 2002 to 2012, including assignments at Ramstein Air Base in Germany and at Travis Air Force Base in California. He earned a B.S. degree in Civil Engineering and an M.S. degree in Engineering Science from University of the Pacific in 2014. He is a registered Civil Engineer in California.

Leyva currently serves as Treasurer for the ASCE Central Valley Branch and as Scholarship Chair for the Sacramento Chapter of the American Public Works Association. He has served as mentor to students on the Pacific ASCE MidPacific Student Competition Teams, as a guest speaker in classes, an evaluator of student projects, and as a constant advocate for students. Congratulations Shawn!

2017 Outstanding Civil Engineering Student Award Winner


Lauren Pitcher is a Civil Engineering Student at the California State University (CSU), Chico, and anticipates graduating this coming May. Pitcher has held engineering Internships with RNR Construction and Shimmick Construction. In 2017, shew was the Conference Chair for MidPac, and prior to that she was the Concrete Canoe Team Captain in both 2015 and 2016. Currently, Pitcher is serving as the CSU, Chico ASCE Student Chapter President. She enjoys traveling, camping, and boating. Congratulations Lauren!

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Capital Branch Activities

ASCE Capital Branch wishes all members and their families happy holidays and safe travels. The next monthly luncheon will be held on January 23, 2017. The details will be provided in the next EOG


The ASCE Capital Branch is pleased to announce an opportunity for the Civil Engineering Firms, Contractors and Vendors to sponsor ASCE’s monthly Luncheons. The sponsoring company will have the opportunity to make a brief presentation that is 3 to 5 minutes long and is supported by a few slides in PowerPoint format.  This opportunity will provide the sponsoring company a great marketing opportunity to the local engineering community.  For further information, please contact Jai Singh at (916) 580-9725.

JOIN US ON LinkedIn.

The Capital Branch has a group page to make it easier to post announcements about upcoming events of interest to Civil Engineers in the Sacramento area.  To join the group page go to


The Capital Branch has started a group page to make it easier to post announcements about upcoming events of interest to Civil Engineers in the Sacramento area.  To join the group page go to   

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Central Valley Branch Activities

We have monthly lunch meetings with various presentations on the third Tuesday of each month. If you are in the Stockton area please join us. For more information about the Central Valley Branch, please contact Rhett Kilgore at

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Feather River Branch Activities

For more information about future meetings and activities, please contact, Clay Slocum at, or 530-864-1648.

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Shasta Branch Activities

For more information about the Shasta Branch meetings, please contact Susan Goodwin at

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Younger Members Forum (YMF)


Thursday, December 7, 5:30 - 7:30
Old Spaghetti Factory
1910 J Street

Join us at the annual holiday party and bring a toy for the Toys For Tots toy drive. Please mark your calendar and plan on attending this fun and philanthropic event!


January 11-14, 2018
Convention Venue: Hilton Lake Las Vegas Resort
Register by December 14

Are you interested in getting more involved with ASCE while developing valuable leadership skills? Do you want to connect with peers in the region and build your network?

Consider attending WRYMC! WRYMC is the annual conference for the Western Region Younger Members Council. Learn more about the conference here

Please email Patrick if you intend to join us and register here today!


Who's taking the PE Exam? Are you? Good news, YMF offers the best PE review courses in town. 

8-Hour Review
January 24 - March 14, 2018
Register by January 8, 2018

Survey Review
February 7,10, and 11, 2018
Register by January 15, 2018

Seismic Review
February 24March 3, 10, and 17, 2018
Register By: January 15, 2018

Register here

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Environmental Water Resources Institute (EWRI)


Wednesday, December 6, 6-8 pm
Claim Jumper Restaurant
1111 J Street
Sacramento, CA

Topic: Winter forecast and latest storm tracking technology
Speaker: Michael Anderson, State Climatologist
Cost: $25 ($15 for students)
Click here to register

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Engineers Without Borders


Our next chapter meeting will be our holiday party, all are welcome!

Wednesday, December 20, 6PM
Ashley Martin’s House
Contact Ashley at 530-200-6309 or  for directions.


It is the time of year for Engineers Without Borders annual year end campaign! Each project teams campaign will continue through the end of the year. Use the link below to support the project team campaigns:

Panama Team:

Belize Team:

Kenya Team:

For more information about each of the project teams, visit


The East Kanyamamba, Kenya (KEK) project team has set up a fundraising campaign with Paint Nite to raise funds for our upcoming monitoring and continued implementation trip. Here’s how to support:

Find an event you want to attend near you on Then use our fundraiser code (VF-EWBKEK) at check out. Paint Nite will donate $15 for every ticket bought with this code. You can learn more at our Paint Nite campaign

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History & Heritage Committee



Chuck Spinks, P.E., M. ASCE
Chair, Region 9 History & Heritage Committee

In 2019, the nation will be celebrating the 150th anniversary of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad. The construction of the Transcontinental Railroad was the most significant project in the world in the 19th century. It was like going to the moon in the 20th century; few thought it was possible with the technology of the time. It involved constructing 2,000 miles of railroad over two major mountain ranges, the Rocky Mountains, and the even more difficult Sierra Nevada. Both crossings were at a higher elevation than any railroad in the world up to that time.

This event is especially significant to California for the following reasons:

  • The Central Pacific Railroad of California was incorporated on June 26, 1861 in Sacramento, more than a year before the Union Pacific railroad was formed in the East.

  • The single person most responsible for getting the Pacific Railroad Act of 1862 passed by Congress was a Civil Engineer in California, Theodore Judah, a member of ASCE.

  • Construction of the Central Pacific Railroad started on January 23, 1863 in Sacramento, over 2 and ½ years before the first rail was laid by the Union Pacific.

  • By far the most difficult and challenging part of the route for the Civil Engineers and the construction workers was crossing the Sierra Nevada.

  • The construction of the Central Pacific required the effort of thousands of Chinese immigrants that made up 90% of the work force, with many of their descendants currently living in California.

The Theodore Judah Monument cornerstone being dedicated on April 25, 1930 by ASCE President John F. Coleman during ASCE’s National Convention in Sacramento.

The ASCE Region 9 and the Society History & Heritage Committees have started planning activities for the celebrations in 2019. The major ASCE activity will be a Railroad History Symposium in Sacramento in May of 2019. It will include speakers on topics of Railroad History, concentrating on the Transcontinental Railroad and the railroad technology of the time. Tours and field trips will be conducted before or after the Symposium. Look for announcements from ASCE coming out in early 2018.

The Region 9 History & Heritage Committee is also looking for new Historic Civil Engineering Landmarks to designate, either with a regional award or with a national award. It would be great to have one or more Historic Civil Engineering Landmark awards for the historic year 2019. The Criteria for the National award are:

  • The nominated project must represent a significant facet of civil engineering history, and must have contributed to the development of the nation or a very large region.
  • The nominated project needs to be at least 50 years old.
  • A local section and region must officially nominate the project.
  • A detailed submittal to include the Historic Civil Engineering Landmark Form must be submitted to the National History and Heritage Committee for approval
  • If approved, ASCE will supply the 13” X 19” bronze plaque.
  • The section will organize a dedication ceremony to be attended by the society president or their delegate.

The criteria for the local or regional award are less stringent, but similar. The Region 9 History & Heritage Committee will assist and support local efforts in preparing the award applications. If you have any questions or ideas for awards, please contact Chuck Spinks at, or the committee Vice Chair, Andy Machen at

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Disaster Preparedness


Have you been certified as a Safety Assessment Evaluator (SAP) yet? If you haven’t, then you’re not ready for a disaster. When thousands of homes and businesses have been damaged or destroyed by an earthquake somewhere in California you won’t be able to offer your engineering assistance. And you’ll want to. So let’s get you certified.

It’s easy to get trained. The six-hour course is often FREE (or at a small charge for lunch and meeting room) and is provided in areas around the State periodically. The cert is good for FIVE years and then you can renew online… what could be simpler?  To find a class in your area, check the training schedule at and click on their Training Calendar. Look for an SAP Evaluator training class near you.

If you don’t find a class in your area, send an email to me saying you’re interested and I’ll do my best to set one up near you if enough people are interested. Please email me at:

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Continuing Education


ASCE announces new asynchronous online instructor-led programs in which you move through a 6 or 12-week learning experience with your peers. The Guided Online Course content includes recorded video lectures, interactive exercises, case studies, live webinars and weekly discussions to help you master the course material. Gain unlimited, 24/7 accessibility to weekly modules. Complete coursework at the time and pace that is most convenient for you, using your own devices. Click here to see full list of courses.

Buy 2 Registrations and get the 3rd Free!
To receive this discount, email contact information for all registrants and a registration confirmation email will be sent to each attendee. Or call 1-800-548-2723 to register, and mention the code GOCFREE. To inquire about larger group discounts, write to


Design of Concrete Pavements
December 7 - 8 | Sacramento, CA

Financial Management for the Professional Engineer
February 2-3, 2018 | San Francisco Metro-Area


You've asked for it and we listened!  Pay 1 low rate, and gain unlimited access to your choice of 10 on-demand webinars from ASCE's complete catalog, during a 365-day subscription period. Order your on-demand webinar subscription today!  For individual use only, not to be used for groups.

  • Save up to 63%
  • Earn up to 15 CEUs/PDHs
  • Pay one low fee 
  • 10 on-demand webinars of your choice
  • State-of-the-practice programs taught by leading practitioners
  • A convenient, effective, affordable way to earn CEUs/PDHs for P.E. license renewal


Webinars are convenient, low-cost, and an efficient training option. Login anywhere and interact with the instructor and other participants. Live webinars cover practical, targeted topics taught by experts in their field. Gain knowledge and earn PDHs. Plus, as a Sacramento Section member, a portion of the webinar fee will go back to support our local chapter. For more details, go to: Use Promo Code WEBSACSEC to secure your preferred rate.


On-demand learning is a convenient and effective method for engineers to earn PDHs/CEUs and gain practical, real-world knowledge.  ASCE's programs are developed by industry experts and available for a variety of technical areas and in your choice of format to meet the demands facing today's engineers. Plus, as a Sacramento Section member, a portion of the webinar fee will go back to support our local chapter. For more details, go to: Use Promo Code WEBSACSEC to secure your preferred rate.

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Region 9



Kwame A. Agyare, P.E., ENV SP, M. ASCE
ASCE Region 9 (California)
Director and Chair, Region 9 Board of Governors

ASCE is nearing the completion of a two-year long process that will result in a major update to the Society’s Strategic Plan.  In my recent November newsletter article I had noted that the Society’s top three strategic initiatives for the past several years have essentially been: (1) Sustainable Infrastructure – where members are dedicated to ensuring a sustainable future in which human society has the capacity and opportunity to maintain and improve its quality of life indefinitely, without degrading the quantity, quality, or the availability of natural, economic and social resources; (2) The ASCE Grand Challenge – established to reduce the life cycle cost of infrastructure by 50% by 2025 and to foster the optimization of infrastructure investments for society, and; (3) Raise the Bar – seeking to advance the profession and the public welfare by actively supporting the national movement to raise educational requirements for licensure of future professional engineers.  The new ASCE Strategic Plan will encompass new goals to chart our Society’s future. 

The Vision for the Society will remain “Civil Engineers are global leaders building a better quality of life” 

The Mission for the Society was modified by the Board of Direction in March of this year, from “Provide essential value to our members and partners, advance civil engineering, and serve the public good” to an updated version which states “Deliver value to our members, advance civil engineering, and protect the public health, safety, and welfare.”

Six new goals have been developed for the Society going forward. The new goals will be accompanied by several Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to ensure that the goals are substantially achieved in the coming years.

The new goals are:

  1.     Civil engineers develop and apply innovative, state-of-the-art practices and technologies
  2.     All infrastructure is safe, efficient, and sustainable
  3.     ASCE advances the educational and professional standards for civil engineers
  4.     The public values civil engineer’s essential role in society
  5.     An ever-growing number of civil engineers are members of, and engage in, ASCE
  6.     ASCE excels in strategic and operational effectiveness

Strategies necessary to achieve these goals are currently in development.  A final decision on the strategies and the entire strategic plan is scheduled for the March 16-17, 2018 Society Board meeting in Arlington, VA.  Several ASCE leaders are currently involved in the process.  These include Section & Branch Presidents or committee chairs who oversee a committee; the Board of Directors; and some constituent committees of ASCE.  These entities have been tasked to gather input from fellow officers, local board members and committee members towards the plan.  Region 9 members can contact their local leaders to provide input towards this effort.  Written comments on the new Goals are to be submitted electronically to ASCE at no later than December 14, 2017.

For any information regarding ASCE Region 9 activities, please contact me at or you may visit the ASCE Region 9 website at



Rossana G. D’Antonio, P.E., G.E., F. ASCE
ASCE Region 9 Governor-At-Large 
Los Angeles Section

I just returned from attending the ASCE International Conference on Sustainable Infrastructure in New York City and I’m feeling energized and inspired.  As you can clearly deduce from the name, the conference promotes sustainability.  Which got me thinking about what sustainability means to me especially as I embark on my new role as Region Governor of the Los Angeles Section for California.

Society is facing daunting current day challenges that will task our civil engineering profession.  Our technical and leadership skills are needed now more than ever to address climate change, aging infrastructure, long-term resiliency needs, dwindling financial resources, and increased poverty levels, just to name a few.  Civil engineers will be tasked with finding solutions to problems never before faced.  Decisions we make today will have huge economic and social impacts not only to today’s society but to future generations.

It is clear that these new challenges require new approaches based on new types of thinking.  And while we are all trying to figure things out, we do not have to go at it alone.  The conference made it clear that cross collaboration and knowledge sharing goes a long way and we are stronger together.  ASCE has always been a great resource for me going back to my college days and I have remained active throughout the years in several different capacities.  It is where I first established professional relationships that I carry with me to this day.  In September, I was sworn in as Region Governor at ASCE Headquarters in Reston, Virginia during the President’s & Governor’s Forum and Leadership Orientation Weekend.  The event was awe inspiring and I do not take this responsibility lightly.  Arriving for the first time at the ASCE mothership felt like coming home.  I had the privilege of meeting the dedicated ASCE staff that work diligently and behind-the-scenes in strengthening our profession at a global level.  The event also brought together dozens of volunteers just like me committed at giving back to a profession we love.    

That weekend reminded me that I follow in the footsteps of those that came before me.  And, yes, in order to maintain a sustainable leadership pipeline, it will be imperative that my shoulders serve as a foundation for future generations.  We must inspire them to think holistically with economic, social, and environmental issues in mind; to innovate, remain curious, and pursue the art of the possible; and broaden the profession’s technical excellence and professional leadership.  What better way to do so than to encourage working to implement ASCE’s goals and strategic initiatives.  From what I see, the next generation is ready, able and willing to do so and I am hopeful in what the future holds. 

As I embark on this three-year term as Governor, my plan is to promote leadership development, support the local Sections and Branches on any issues that may arise, provide outreach to younger member forums and student chapters, and improve member service. These are exciting times for me and our civil engineering profession.  Our profession is in the midst of a transformation, a renaissance of sorts.  We all have the opportunity to lead the way in influencing change and I am excited about venturing on this journey together. I hope to meet many of you throughout Region 9 and share any insight I may have on the value of ASCE participation as well as my experience with the ASCE initiatives.  It is truly an honor to serve as Region Governor!   If you would like to get in touch with me, please contact me at

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Legislative Update


Richard Markuson
Region 9 Legislative Advocate 

Apply Today for the 2018 Water Leaders Class Applications are now being accepted for the 2018 William R. Gianelli Water Leaders Class. The one-year program fosters a deeper knowledge of water issues and leadership skills. Criteria for acceptance include a commitment to understanding water issues and an interest in seeking leadership roles on public boards and commissions, or key staff positions Applications for the yearlong program are due by Dec. 5. More information here

Legislation: The California State Legislature is currently on hiatus with the new session scheduled to begin in January 2018. Members are encouraged to hold “in-home District” meetings with their elected officials while the legislators are out of session. Here is the final status of Region 9 bills: 

  • AB 28 (Frazier): Department of Transportation:  environmental review process:  federal pilot program - Support: Re-enacts, until January 1, 2020, Caltrans' authority to waive its 11th Amendment right to sovereign immunity from lawsuits brought in federal court thereby allowing Caltrans to continue assuming the role of the U.S. DOT for NEPA decision making. Chaptered
  • AB 56 (Holden): IBank Funding to Infrastructure Supporting Housing Production - Support: Permits the IBank, established in 1994, to promote “economic revitalization, enable future development, and encourage a healthy climate for jobs in California” for financing the infrastructure that supports housing production. Chaptered
  • AB 544 (Bloom): Vehicles: High Occupancy Vehicle Lanes - Support: Creates a new program to grant, until September 30, 2025, federal inherently low emission vehicles (ILEVs) and transitional zero-emission vehicles (TZEVs) access to high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes for approximately a four-year period, regardless of vehicle occupancy level. Chaptered
  • AB 994 (Muratsuchi): Health care districts: design-build - Support: allows the board of directors of the Beach Cities Health District (BCHD) to use design-build contracting for construction of buildings. Chaptered
  • AB 1000 (Friedman): Water conveyance: use of facility with unused capacity - Oppose would have prohibited a transferor of water from using a water conveyance facility that has unused capacity to transfer water from a groundwater basin as specified, unless the State Lands Commission, in consultation with the Department of Fish and Wildlife, finds that the transfer of the water will not adversely affect the natural or cultural resources, including groundwater resources or habitat, of those federal and state lands. 2-year bill
  • AB 1523 (Obernolte): San Bernardino County Transportation Authority:  Design-Build – Support: authorizes the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority (SBCTA) to use design-build contracting on one project in the City of San Bernardino. Chaptered
  • AB 1654 (Rubio): Water Conservation:  Support: would enhance existing reporting and drought response requirements. Urban retail water suppliers would report annually to DWR on the status of their water supplies for that year and whether supplies will be adequate to meet projected customer demand. If supplies are not adequate to meet demand, the water supplier would be required to implement the appropriate responses as described in their water shortage contingency analysis. 2-year bill
  • AB 1671 (Caballero): Backflow Protection and Cross Connection Controls:  Standards – Support: Requires the State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) to, on or before January 1, 2020, adopt standards for backflow protection and cross-connection control. Chaptered
  • SB 1 (Beall): Transportation Funding – Support: Increases several taxes and fees to raise the equivalent of roughly $52.4 billion over ten years in new transportation revenues and makes adjustments for inflation every year; directs the funding to be used towards deferred maintenance on the state highways and local streets and roads, and to improve the state's trade corridors, transit, and active transportation facilities. Chaptered
  • SB 3 (Beall): Veterans and Affordable Housing Bond Act of 2018 – Support: enacts the Veterans and Affordable Housing Bond Act of 2018 and authorizes the issuance of $4 billion in general obligation (GO) bonds for affordable housing programs and a veteran’s home ownership program, subject to approval by the voters in the November 6, 2018 election. Chaptered
  • SB 373 (Cannella) Public contracts: design-build: Stanislaus Regional Water Authority – Support: allows the Stanislaus Regional Water Authority to utilize design-build to construct a surface water supply project. Chaptered
  • SB 436 (Allen): Teachers:  California STEM Professional Teaching Pathway Act of 2017 – Support: establishes the California STEM Professional Teaching Pathway to recruit, train, support, and retain qualified science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals, including military veterans, as mathematics and science teachers in California. 2-year bill
  • SB 623 (Monning) Water quality: Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund. Oppose: creates the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund, administered by the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), and imposes water, fertilizer and dairy fees to fund safe drinking water programs. 2-year bill
  • SB 793 (Hill) Competitive bidding: design-build and best value construction contracting. Support: allows specified special districts to use design-build contracting for construction of buildings or other facilities in those districts, and expands a pilot program that allows seven counties to use best value contracting for specified projects until January 1, 2020. Chaptered

Recent Reports

Environmental Research Letters released Availability of High-Magnitude Streamflow for Groundwater Banking in the Central Valley, California. “California’s climate is characterized by the largest precipitation and streamflow variability observed within the coterminous U.S. This, combined with chronic groundwater overdraft ... creates the need to identify additional surface water sources available for groundwater recharge using methods such as agricultural groundwater banking, aquifer storage and recovery, and spreading basins…. [W]e present a comprehensive analysis of the magnitude, frequency, duration and timing of high-magnitude streamflow (HMF) for 93 stream gauges covering the Sacramento, San Joaquin and Tulare basins in California…. The results suggest that there is sufficient unmanaged surface water physically available to mitigate long-term groundwater overdraft in the Central Valley.”

They also published Dry Groundwater Wells in the Western United States. “During California’s severe five-year drought groundwater levels fell to record lows and people in farming communities from Tulare County to Paso Robles saw their wells go dry. Now researchers have analyzed records for about 2 million wells across 17 western states from Texas to Oregon, and they estimate that one out of every 30 wells was dry between 2013 and 2015. The researchers also found dry wells were concentrated in farming areas such as California’s Central Valley and the High Plains. In some areas, they estimated that up to one-fifth of wells were dry…. [T]he study confirmed that domestic wells are shallower and more susceptible to going dry than agricultural wells in parts of the Central Valley, though not all of it. Outside of California … the depths of household wells and agricultural wells were similar in most of the areas they analyzed.” (Desert SunSep. 29, 2017)

UC Davis published Disruptive Transportation: The Adoption, Utilization, and Impacts of Ride-Hailing in the United States. “Ride-hailing services have exploded in popularity around the world in a relatively short period of time, and initial evidence suggests that they capture a relatively significant share of how people travel in major cities. Looking forward towards a future with automated vehicle technology – which is estimated to accelerate adoption of these services, it is critical that transportation planners and policymakers begin to understand how “mobility as a service” models shape travel patterns.” The key takeaways from the study include finding a higher use of the services among the wealthy and a higher use in urban areas. A significant finding was that the majority of trips would have been made via walking, biking, public transit, or simply avoided.

The CA State Auditor’s office has released its report, “Dept. of Water Resources: The Unexpected Complexity of California WaterFix Has Resulted in Significant Cost Increases and Delays,” finds “the planning phase” of WaterFix “experienced significant cost increases and schedule delays because of the scale and unexpected complexity of the project,” noting “as of June 2017, the planning costs had reached $280 million;” also finds DWR did not follow contractor bidding requirements when it replaced the program manager for the conservation and conveyance program,” selecting the Hallmark Group, whose contract “has tripled from $4.1 million to $13.8 million; also finds DWR “has not completed either an economic or financial analysis to demonstrate the financial viability of WaterFix.” 


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The Law & Civil Engineering


Gene Bass

This will likely be an article that will cause you to say, “well, I know that ... isn’t it obvious...” Yet, it can be helpful for someone else to state the obvious where you might step back and realize that you have not noticed something in your own business. Call them “nuggets of knowledge” “general guidelines” or “whatever” to help avoid disputes and claims.

Only do business with good, honest, well financed people and/or entitles for clients. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to pick and choose only the cream of the crop. Unfortunately, experience has shown that there are bad people out there and that even the best communication and documentation will not disable their efforts to ruin an otherwise ideal project. Just try to avoid them. The same goes for consultants as well.

Be clear in the beginning as to what is expected of each party to the contract. The failure to meet expectations is a great catalyst for litigation and disputes. If all parties are fully aware of what is expected of the other, there will be fewer surprises and fewer disputes. It is not only important in the beginning but as the project continues.

Communication is the key. Do not assume that your client fully understands what you are saying as you understand it. A good rule is to “say what it is” and “say what it isn’t.” It is important that your client understand and appreciate the scope and limitations of what you will do. If you have worked with the client before and on the same type of project, you can have a reasonable expectation that your client’s understanding of your work corresponds with your own. Your client, however, may not fully understand what your work involves and may not be willing to admit it. In that case, you have the special burden of asking enough of the right questions so that you feel comfortable of your client’s position.

Be aware, especially when trying to win a job with a new client, not to lead the client to expect something that you cannot realistic deliver. Some clients may not be so willing to forgive the differences between what was represented, either directly or impliedly, in the beginning and what was delivered qt the end. While there may be any number of reasonable explanations as to why the originally represented deliverables ended up not being possible, the client may have particularly relied on the engineer’s sales pitch and anticipated a particular result from the beginning. Failure of that expectation can set up the relationship for claims against and damage to the reputation of the engineer.


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Officer Contacts

(Those listed in blue are considered Section Board Members with voting authority. Everyone else on this list is invited to our meetings to give an update on their subsidiary organization)


President   Adam Killinger 951-265-5289
President Elect   Michael Konieczki 916-840-5211
Senior Director  Tony Quintrall 916-993-7616
Junior Director Megan LeRoy 916-859-3651
Secretary Dr. Ben Fell 916-278-8139
Treasurer Jafar Faghih 916-679-8864
Past President Elias Karam 209-481-6857
Executive Director Marie Silveira   916-296-9856
YMF Board Rep Bryan Perrin 916-751-0849
Region 9 Chair Kwame Agyare  
Region 9 Governor Thor Larsen  916-973-0356
Egrs. w/o Borders Ashley Martin 530-200-6309
Ladies Auxiliary Marlene Tobia 916-492-2181
EOG/Webmaster Michelle Zeiss 916-717-4070
Capital Branch Jai Singh 916-788-2884
Central Valley Branch Rhett Kilgore 209-943-2021
Feather River Branch  Clay Slocum 530-864-1648
Shasta Branch Susan Goodwin 530-223-2585 


Coasts, Oceans Ports & Rivers Inst. Zia Zafir 916-366-1701
Construction Inst.    Brad Quon 916-871-2080
Environ. & Water Resources Inst.  Rich Juricich 916-492-2181 
Geo-Institute Kartk Atyam 916-679-2005
Structural Engineering Inst.

Niranjen Kanepathipillai 916-227-4463
Transportation & Development Inst.   Vacant     


College Accreditation Joan Al-Kazily    530-756-9530
Disaster Preparedness John Andrew 916-651-9657
Education & Awards Thor Larsen  916-973-0356
Government Relations Craig Copelan 530-908-4790
History & Heritage Thor Larsen  916-973-0356
Membership-Life Mem. Thor Larsen  916-973-0356
Scholarship Eric Polson  916-801-6290
Sustainability Jennifer Buchanan 916-240-7010


California State University, Sacramento Vince Anicich  
University of the Pacific Joey McElhany  
University of California, Davis Abdulla Alishaq  
California State University, Chico Grant Rose  


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