Sewer and drinking water funding has been a back burner issue in Washington for the past decade, as local infrastructure needs have come to a boil. But the economic stimulus package Congress will pass will include substantial funds for water infrastructure.
The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) has given verbal assurance to NASSCO that it will continue to consider the sewer rehabilitation work typically performed by its members as "maintenance" rather than "construction" as had been proposed in a rule change to OSHA's confined space standard, reports Irv Gemora, executive director of NASSCO.
The city of Garland, TX, is in the process of a major sanitary sewer improvement program that will expand its capacity and improve conditions for this community of 230,000 located just northeast of Dallas.
In the underground construction industry, the fact that American sewers are overtaxed and given to overflows that endanger public health is no secret. But raising public awareness is a problem, and we're happy to see items in the general interest press like Sunday's New York Times article focusing on the issue: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/23/us/23sewer.html?_r=2&hp (free registration many be required).