A few weeks ago I went down to Atlanta, GA to help ASCE participate in the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) annual Legislative Summit. The meeting is the largest gathering of state legislators held each year and was attended by nearly 5,000 people.
One of the things I did there was to exhibit at the meeting with a booth that focused on the 2013 Report Card for America’s Infrastructure. I, along with other ASCE staff was able to interact with legislators and legislative staff from all 50 states. A special thanks to ASCE members from the Georgia Section who volunteered at this meeting: Janille Smith Colin, Jeffrey Chui, Danielle Elkins, A.M.ASCE, Katherine Gurd, Rick Gurney, P.E., M.ASCE, Rebecca Shelton, P.E., M.ASCE, and Ray Wilke, P.E., M.ASCE.
The exhibit hall was a very…interesting… place. Every group under the sun seems to have a presence and everyone is pushing their message out to state legislators. From the National Rifle Association to the American Association for Nude Recreation, The Beer Institute to Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, if you are interested in an issue you can find someone to talk to you and educate you on it.
Personally, I had multiple good conversations with state legislators about the condition on their state’s infrastructure and what they can do about it. It was a worthwhile event and I hope that people learned as much from me as I learned from others.
NCSL next year is in Minneapolis. If you are in the area you should stop in!