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You are not alone.

Yours is one of nearly 20,000 public works departments serving citizens across the United States. Each agency struggles with the same challenges: responding to ever-changing (and ever-expanding) U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations, deciding how and when to restore or replace aging infrastructure, managing your department's assets, and gathering the funding and personnel to make it all possible.

To be the most effective public servant possible, you must keep up with changes in public works-related processes, equipment and technology. But how?

According to an exclusive PUBLIC WORKS reader survey, the top two ways you gather information are at educational seminars (65%) and trade shows (61%). The American Public Works Association's 2006 International Public Works Congress and Exposition (Sept. 10–13 in Kansas City) offers both—and the chance to learn from your peers.

The following pages are broken into 13 core public works areas, with highlights on the speakers and products the APWA has assembled for each. For more detail on any of them, visit www.apwa.net. When you're not sharing advice and war stories with your peers, walk the trade show floor to try out the equipment and tools your vendors have developed to help you and your department be as proactive as possible.

We're delighted to help you take maximum advantage of your precious travel budget at the APWA Congress and Exposition, the only conference dedicated solely to public works professionals. If you're one of the thousands of PW leaders planning on attending the show, please drop us a line at pw@hanleywood.com; we'd love to hear your thoughts on the show, including your can't-miss seminars and items you'll be prowling for on the exhibit space floor. See you in Kansas City!