ASCE Region 6 Recap from the Legislative Fly-In

Author: Sean Merrell PE, PTOE, F.ASCE | ASCE Region 6 Director

April 2023

This year we had beautiful weather on March 1-3 for the ASCE Legislative Fly-in as we actually got to meet face-to-face with our Members of Congress and their senior legislative staff in Washington, DC. This was an exclusive and intensive two-day event providing participants with professional development in honing their skills in the public policy process and advocacy, as well as valuable peer-to-peer networking with fellow ASCE influencers. We also advanced the Society’s collective policy priorities while learning beneficial leadership skills we can bring back to the workplace.

The ask of our Legislators this year focused on:

  • Continued support of the IIJA by ensuring the funding provided is allocated in a timely manner to the appropriate agencies
  • Reauthorization of the FAA funding
  • Reauthorization of the National Dam Safety Program
  • Support in championing resilient infrastructure

We had over 250 ASCE advocates with us on Capitol Hill, including 17 from Texas and 3 from New Mexico.

Some of the activities we participated in included:

  • Exclusive briefing sessions on key activity in Congress impacting the profession, new regulations and implementation plans, and ASCE’s legislative priorities.
  • Interactive training on advocacy, communicating your “ask”, and building relationships with your elected leaders — including pre-event webinars.
  • Networking with your ASCE peers from across the country.
  • Virtual meetings with your Members of Congress or their staff.
  • Tips on continuing valuable relationships with your elected officials once you return home.

Our speakers this year included:

  • ASCE Global President Maria Lehman
  • ASCE Global President Elect Marsia Geldert-Murphy
  • Federal Highway Administrator Shailen Bhatt
  • AASHTO President Roger Millar
  • Brad Fitch (President & CEO of the Congressional Management Foundation)
  • Joe St. George (National Political Editor from Scripps News)
  • The Department of Transportation Secretary for Washington State, Wisconsin, Delaware and Louisiana

Please consider participating next year as the program continues to improve and grow every year.