For Immediate Release
May 15-21, 2011 Declared Public Works Week in Springfield
Mayor Pro-tem Bob Stephens will proclaim May 15-21 to be National Public Works Week in Springfield at a signing ceremony in his office at 11:45 a.m., Tuesday, May 17, 2011. The signing ceremony will include the Mayor and representatives of the various divisions of Springfield Public Works. In addition, other local activities will feature Public Works exhibits and displays in the lobby of the Busch Building showcasing Springfield Public Works.
The theme for the 2011 National Public Works Week is "Public Works: Serving You and Your Community" speaking to the all-pervasive effort of public works professionals and their projects, enhancing quality of life and providing the necessities of community to the citizens of the world.
The City of Springfield's Department of Public Works has a strong tradition of outstanding leadership and accomplishment throughout the department. For example, the American Public Works Association annually presents a Top Ten Public Works Leaders of the Year Award. Since the program began in 1960, there have been a total of 500 Top Ten Leaders recognized by APWA, including 21 individuals from Missouri. Of the Missouri recipients, four have been from Springfield. Jonathan Gano was recognized as the Young Public Works Leader of the Year in 2010. Earlier this year, Randy Lyman joined Kevin Swearengin and Wayne Latimer as Public Works employees having received the Golden Manhole Award recognition for career-long accomplishments. In April, Phil Broyles and Bill Roach were recognized with Choose Environmental Excellence awards for their support of the city's urban forest.
In addition, Public Works facilities have been recognized for outstanding work. The Southwest Wastewater Treatment Plant was recently named 2010 Plant of the Year by the Missouri Water Environment Federation. The National Association of Clean Water Agencies presented the Southwest Wastewater Treatment Plant with a platinum peak performance award (for 100 percent permit compliance for five consecutive years) and the Northwest Wastewater Treatment Plant with a gold peak performance award (for 100 percent permit compliance in 2010).
The first National Public Works Week was instituted by the American Public Works Association (APWA) and observed in 1960. The observance is designed to bring about greater awareness and appreciation for the importance of Public Works services and programs in community life, and to enhance the prestige of professional engineers, administrators and staff serving in Public Works positions, as well as raising young people's interest in pursuing careers in the field. Today, the 29,000 members of APWA use the week to energize and educate the public on the importance of the contribution of public works to their daily lives.
Springfield's Department of Public Works, for example, maintains over 1,200 miles of sanitary sewers, two waste water treatment plants, 1,935 lane miles of streets, 138 traffic signals and 38,000 traffic and street signs, 87 public buildings (nearly 1.2 million square feet), and manages Springfield's solid waste and recycling programs, including disposal of household chemicals and operation of the Springfield Municipal Landfill. Other services include Hazelwood Cemetery maintenance, fleet management, urban forest management, maintenance of 70 City bridges and waterways and providing environmental education programs.
"Public Works touches our citizens' lives every day in many ways they may not even realize," said Steve Meyer, Co-Interim Director of Public Works.
"The vital infrastructure, services, and programs that our employees provide 365 days a year range from where the water goes when you brush your teeth in the morning, to the sidewalks and streets you travel on, to preservation of open space and floodplain management, to important environmental services and education efforts that are essential to protecting and enhancing Springfield's quality of life," said Phil Broyles, Co-Interim Director of Public Works.
For more information, contact: Co-Interim Directors of Public Works Phil Broyles and Steve Meyer, (417) 864-1902.