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New Webinar Series: Delivering Capital Improvements with Limited Resources

May 28, 2020

We understand that your professional development resources are constrained these days. So, when it’s harder for you to send your staff to conferences, Freese and Nichols is bringing the learning opportunities to you.

We are kicking off a series of free webinars to help you find ways to meet your constituents’ needs amid budget shortfalls. The classes are taught by our experienced professionals — bringing expertise in management, funding, engineering and more — and tailored to municipal organizations like yours.

Read on for more details and registration links; if the timing of any session doesn’t work for you, please contact us for alternate arrangements.

We're licensed to award one PDH for each class in many states.
(For Florida attendees: Florida Provider No. 0008234; level of difficulty: moderate)


Public Engagement: How to thrive in a virtual environment

Date: Thursday, September 2

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 am Central / 11:00 am – 12:00 pm Eastern 

Presenter: Wendy Shabay, Erica Craycraft

Description:  Most of our public engagement is now conducted virtually, and it’s expected to stay that way even beyond the pandemic. But you don’t have to just survive in a virtual environment — you can thrive there. This webinar will explore a variety of tools and approaches that enable you to achieve your community’s engagement goals safely and effectively. 

REGISTER HERE: Public Engagement: How to thrive in a virtual environment


Proactive Approaches to Maintaining Water Quality in Your Distribution System 

Date: Wednesday, Sept 30

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 am Central / 11:00 am – 12:00 pm Eastern 

Presenter: Scott Cole, Xi Zhao

Description:  Water utilities in warm climates often face water quality challenges during summer and early fall months. Sustained warm temperatures provide the perfect environment for nitrification, autodecomposition, and other phenomena that degrade chlorine residuals in the distribution system. This presentation will share utilities’ lessons learned and explore proactive strategies to maintain water quality in your distribution system.

REGISTER HERE: Proactive Approaches to Maintaining Water Quality in Your Distribution System


Never waste a good drought: Lessons learned from North Texas and North Georgia  

Date: Wednesday, October 7

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 am Central / 11:00 am – 12:00 pm Eastern 

Presenter: Jeremy Rice, Paula Feldman

Description:  Dallas-Fort Worth and Atlanta, two of the nation’s fastest-growing regions, are both largely dependent on surface water supplies. Both also experienced record droughts in the past 15 years. This presentation will share lessons learned from both droughts and explore how water suppliers and legislators in both states are addressing the risk and resiliency of water supply systems. 

REGISTER HERE: Never waste a good drought


Environmental Due Diligence (Often Underappreciated Until It’s Too Late)

Date: Wednesday, October 14

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 am Central / 11:00 am – 12:00 pm Eastern 

Presenter: Jimmy Gibson, Kim Buckley

Description: When the environmental due diligence” of a project site gets only a cursory review, it can lead to construction delays, added costs and a project delivery that the owner isn’t expecting. This presentation will teach how to develop an environmental due diligence plan up front, helping you mitigate potential problems and keep surprises to a minimum. 

REGISTER HERE: Environmental Due Diligence


Practical Asset Management Planning for Your Largest Water/Wastewater Assets

Date: Wednesday, October 21

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 am Central / 11:00 am – 12:00 pm Eastern 

Presenter: James Naylor, Allison Blake 

Description: Identifying your water and wastewater facilities’ assets and determining their condition and criticality can greatly improve your plant management and planning. Additionally, developing GIS locations of underground assets can help avoid unforeseen conditions and conflicts during future projects. This presentation will provide an overview of risk and criticality assessments and discuss best practices for implementing an asset management program. 

REGISTER HERE: Practical Asset Management Planning for Your Largest Water/Wastewater Assets


Don’t Treat Your Rainwater: Condition Assessment and SSES Programs to Reduce I/I in Collections Systems

Date: Thursday, October 29

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 am Central / 11:00 am – 12:00 pm Eastern 

Presenter: Brian White, Steven Rhodes

Description: Utilities often struggle to know where to capital dollars: find and repair I/I sources within their wastewater collection system, or invest in conveyance and treatment? The good news is that many utilities already have an abundance of data that can inform those decisions. We’ll discuss challenges and lessons learned from the implementation of several condition assessment, SSES, and I/I reduction programs. 

REGISTER HERE: Don’t Treat Your Rainwater


Previous Webinars

The Art of Managing Construction, Part 1: Construction Contract Administration

This two-part series provides best practices for managing your construction toolbox and solutions to common challenges. Part 1 will focus on the Construction Contract Administration process. The administration of construction contracts is as much of an art as it is a science. In this class, we will cover the soft skills and best practices that will enable you to execute your projects.

The Art of Managing Construction, Part 2: Site Inspection and Construction Red Flags

This two-part series provides best practices for managing your construction toolbox and solutions to common challenges. Part 2 will focus on the site inspection process: how to spot red flags and prevent incidents before they happen. You'll learn how successful construction managers identify issues, reduce client concerns, solve problems, and implement solutions.

Is Collaborative Project Delivery Right For My Organization? Best Practices For Delivery Of Capital Projects

Collaborative Project Delivery approaches such as Construction Manager at Risk and Design-Build are now mainstream in the public sector. However, owners must understand many procurement and execution practices to be successful. This session will review these differences and provide best practices to keep in mind as you consider a transition to collaborative delivery. 

Comprehensive Flood Planning for Informed Communities – From Data to Decision Making

Comprehensive flood plans are becoming the new norm and may encompass a wide range of activities and approaches as they are implemented on a regional or statewide basisFreese and Nichols is bringing together flood management officials from across the South to discuss data challenges, outreach/engagement, funding, measures of success, and the roles of federal and municipal partners. Agencies scheduled to participate on the panel are Mecklenburg County, NC; Oklahoma Water Resources Board; Georgia Environmental Protection Division; and Louisiana Office of Community Development.

Prioritizing Critical Infrastructure (CIP) Needs In A Challenging Environment

In every budget year, significant competition exists for CIP budgets with needs including growth, infrastructure renewal, operational, regulatory, deficiencies and economic development. Projected revenue shortfalls resulting from the current pandemic and economic conditions in 2020 have further complicated budget allocations. This presentation will provide an overview of tools and approaches that can be used for tracking and prioritizing projects and analyzing multiple scenarios.  

Navigating Texas’ New Funding for Disaster Mitigation 

Mitigation against disaster is now more important than ever, but figuring out how to pay for it can be difficult. Don’t miss out on this year’s new funding sources to assist with disaster mitigation: The Texas Water Development Board’s Flood Infrastructure Fund (applications due June 15) and the Texas General Land Office’s Community Development Block Grant – Mitigation funds. This presentation will explain each program and help you with ideas on how to access these funds.

What Water Planning Can Teach Flood Planning

The flood planning effort passed by the Texas Legislature in 2019 represents a new, essential and ambitious undertaking for the state. But the framework looks familiar: It follows the structure of the state water plan, a successful model that over the past two decades has enabled Texas to integrate the disparate needs of our sprawling state into a long-range plan. That two decades-plus of experience has taught valuable lessons in innovation, collaboration and data analysis that can be applied to flood planning.

Getting Projects Out the Door with Limited Time and Resources

Many municipalities and agencies face the challenge of needing major infrastructure to keep up with a rapidly growing population but lacked the resources to deliver a large capital improvement program (CIP) of the magnitude required. This webinar provides key strategies that can be used to help deliver necessary capital improvements through development of a customized Capital Project Delivery Plan that takes advantage of both internal and external resources.