New Transportation Director for Missouri
The Missouri Highway and Transportation Commission has selected Patrick McKenna to serve as director of the state Department of Transportation (MoDOT). Presently, McKenna is deputy commissioner of the New Hampshire DOT. He will start his new job on December 7.
He will start his new job at an agency facing many challenges, particularly low revenues. MoDOT has not significant improvement or expansion projects slated for the next five years because of lack of funding. The agency anticipates it will not even have enough money to fully maintain roads and bridges in the state within a couple of years.
McKenna will be coming from a different environment. New Hampshire raised its fuel tax in 2014. It also has toll roads; Missouri has none, though McKenna has suggested it should be on the table as a way to pay for roads.
You can find out more about McKenna and his appointment in the Kansas City Star, Jefferson City News-Tribune, or St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
California Communities Consider Direct Potable Reuse
The drought in California has led to a discussion of direct potable reuse of wastewater. This “toilet-to-tap” practice involves sending treated wastewater directly to treatment for drinking water. Some Texas communities have already adopted this practice as a response to drought. You can find out more here.