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Guest speaker Jason Iken, P.E., senior assistant director, city of Houston-Wastewater Operations Branch, spoke to nearly 90 attendees at the Underground Construction Technology Association (UCTA) Gulf Coast Chapter general luncheon meeting held in Houston on Aug. 3. The topic covered the city of Houston’s management of its sanitary sewer rehab program.

In a continuing effort to improve the Whistleblower Protection Program, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that it is implementing additional measures to strengthen the program and is releasing an internal report detailing a recent review of the program.

The Water Environment Research Foundation (WERF) received an unprecedented number of pre-proposals seeking funding for stormwater management research under its 2011 Unsolicited Research Program.

Moody's Investors Service, one of the world’s leading credit rating agencies, affirmed in July Atlanta, GA’s A1 rating on the city’s $3.2 billion water and wastewater revenue bonds.

The Jersey City, NJ, Municipal Utilities Authority (JCMUA) will spend more than $52 million on sewer repairs and upgrades and pay a civil penalty of $375,000 after repeated violations of the Clean Water Act, according to a settlement with the federal government.

On July 14, the Johnson County, KS, Board of Commissioners authorized construction of an underground effluent pipe between the treatment plant to a discharge point on the river.

Kane County, IL, has been awarded more than $2.27 million in federal disaster aid for five infrastructure projects aimed at alleviating chronic flooding. The federal funding is part of the Illinois “IKE” Disaster Recovery Program established in the wake of Hurricane Ike in Sept. 2008.

Meritage Midstream Services LLC is planning to build a new rich gas gathering system in Webb County, TX. Escondido Resources II LLC will serve as the system’s anchor tenant and will have firm capacity on Meritage’s existing Eagle Ford Escondido Gathering System to move its Eagle Ford volumes.

The Plastics Pipe Institute Inc. (PPI) has added two new online software aids to assist in the design and installation of polyethylene (PE) pipe.

Common Ground Alliance (CGA) partnered with 3M and Greg Biffle, driver of the No. 16 3M Ford Fusion in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, to promote the 811 “Call Before You Dig” phone number at the Aug. 7 Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway, a race he won in 2010.

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