Page 3 - Arkansas 811 Magazine 2022 Issue 1
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Publisher’s Perspective
The 811 Magazine in Arkansas provides stakeholders with a unique opportunity. We solicit input from all stakeholders not only in Arkansas but surrounding states. The feedback is eye-opening. Not enough locators to keep up with the tickets, or unreasonable demands placed on the locating community by utilities and excavators. Of course, the issue is defined by which perspective you believe. Likely, the issue is somewhere in the middle. No matter which side of the fence you come down on, real damage prevention is often the loser.
For the past 15 years, we’ve worked with states facing identical
issues that brought the various perspectives from across their
state together to consider accountability to the state’s dig law. They did this, not because it was easy but rather because it was necessary. Learning to respect yellow paint or red paint becomes easier when we learn to respect all paint.
We believe that working together is made possible by a desire to understand each other’s perspective and being willing to discuss differences honestly and with mutual respect for those differences. This is directly opposed to maintaining the status quo of pointing fingers and refusing to engage in meaningful dialogue to identify common goals so as to arrive at common solutions.
Of course, the municipalities will have different perspectives than the excavators working in their cities and so do the contract locators have their own perspectives. We must be willing to work together to achieve the higher and common goal of damage prevention.
And here is part of the reason why. H.R. 3684, the landmark bipartisan infrastructure bill passed the U.S. Congress. This bill referred to as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act
set minimum state-by-state funding over the next 5 years. What that means is that Arkansas will be allocated $528M for water projects, $3.6B for highways, $278M for bridges and $100M for broadband. The next five years could easily be some of the busiest times in our generation. If what we’re doing today is failing our stakeholders, I hardly think it is the solution for tomorrow’s challenges.
We are committed to keeping all stakeholders informed about the impending directives on the national, regional and local levels. The concept of this magazine is to do just that in a way that also allows you to speak your own mind as to what you think works and what doesn’t. We trust that you will take the time to let us know how to make it more helpful and informative.
Join in the conversation at the Arkansas Damage Prevention Summit or subscribe to the Arkansas 811 Magazine. All magazines are mailed quarterly at no cost to U.S. addresses only.
Contact me at (501) 269-1000 and let’s talk. Let’s get stronger together! Remember, call 811 before you dig and then dig safely!
Roger Cox President ACTS Now, Inc.
2022, Issue 1
Arkansas 811 Magazine • 1

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