Atlantic Chapter Update, August 2016 to Present
Membership has remained relatively stable the last session and we are looking to our membership to see what worked this past year to encourage new folks to try out APWA/CPWA
We held our Fall meeting in Edmundston, New Brunswick October 26,27, and 28th. It was a well attended session with over 100 registrants from all aspects of the Public Works field in our Chapter.
The highlight of the conference was an equipment rodeo and tabletop vendors session. The Rodeo attracted over 40 different equipment operators, supervisors and even suppliers to try their skills at a unique obstacle course. The contestants had to operate a wing equipped snow plow, a front end loader and an excavator through various skill testing obstacles to come up with an aggregate overall time ( less penalties of course). It was a great activity with bragging rights and fun trophies on the line!
In the end the home field advantage took hold with Edmundston city works crews operators taking the top 3 spots , however there were no losers as all had a great experience.
The educational sessions focused on De-Icing technology, Tire and tire retread information and factory demonstration, Electric Vehicle overview for municipalities, Snow dump management, , asset management , advances in equipment technology and a round table on vehicle life cycle costing . As Council of Chapter delegate I delivered a session on APWA national update and the programs of note for members such as Info-Now, APWA website. The session also included an introduction to the Atlantic Chapter members website.
There were many opportunities for networking and exchange of best practices, either after the sessions or during the off hour gatherings.
Once information was gathered the Chapter members have been diligently working on getting the web presence up and have recently uploaded a video http://atlantic.cpwa.net/ to the website to highlight this past fall's conference. ( also available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_6BYnwG6D0&feature=youtu.be )
Ultimately the goal is to keep the website up to date with relevant Chapter information
This was the third year where the Chapter had skipped a spring session in order to regroup and consolidate our outreach to our members. As an interim measure, the Chapter is looking to introduce small scale or localized educational opportunities for our members and are investigating similar models introduced at other chapters.
Best Practice / New Ideas
The Chapter's newest program, directed to the technical and administrative levels of Public Works referred to as the "Engineers' Council" has proven to be a success and the next approach is to time the meeting with the fall conference to increase attendance for both events.
The Chapter, continues with its award of two $1000 Bursaries to post-secondary education students, more specifically children of members looking to further their education. We are receiving applications and will be awarding bursaries this coming summer. To date the Chapter has participated in bursary awards for the past 15 years initially starting at $500 and now set at $1000 and we look forward to future contributions.
Educational Programs and Trainings
In the last 8 months we have only hosted the fall conference and have not initiated and new educational or training programs. Planning is currently underway for our next Conference in Charlottetown PEI , October 4, 5 and 6th where we anticipate holding the conference in conjunction with a Supplier trade show.
The upcoming year will see the Chapter look to further contribute to the educational and social well being of our members. Our biggest challenge continues to be expansion of membership in the overall Atlantic Provinces area particularly encouraging membership from Nova Scotia as we refocus our vision to the Atlantic as a whole. As always we look to take advantage of opportunities to promote APWA/CPWA where members can.
W. Gary Losier,
Council of Chapters Rep,
Atlantic Provinces Chapter
Canadian Public Works Association