Asphalt conference keynote speaker Ma does her homework

Assembly Speaker Pro Tem Fiona Ma prepares for her keynote address at Thursday's "California Asphalt Pavement Conference." Ma is author of a bill in the Legislature, AB812, which aims to increase the utilization of Recycled Asphalt Pavement (RAP) in Cali

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Assembly Speaker Pro Tem Fiona Ma, the keynote speaker at Thursday's "California Asphalt Pavement Conference" in Sacramento, has been doing her homework in preparation for the event.

Ma is author of a bill in the Legislature, AB812, which aims, among other things, to increase the utilization of Recycled Asphalt Pavement (RAP) in California. The bill is likely to be heard by a legislative committee in January.

Ma, a Certified Public Accountant by training and who has relatives in the construction industry, has been visible around California as she builds support for the legislation. She was a featured speaker Oct. 11 at a Monterey conference put on by the California Construction & Industrial Materials Association (CalCIMA), and has been exchanging correspondence with the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans).

Ma, a Democrat from San Francisco, also has been touring facilities of prominent construction materials firms, including visiting a Vulcan Materials plant in Pleasanton on Oct. 18. She is expected to be frank in her effort to urge Caltrans to use more RAP in asphalt mixes. Currently the department caps RAP at 15 percent unless special approvals are obtained.

Caltrans Deputy Director Steve Takigawa, who oversees maintenance and operations for the department, will also be a featured speaker at Thursday's conference.

The conference will feature the latest information on asphalt pavement specifications, research, best-practices and trends. The day-long event will be held at the Radisson Hotel, 500 Leisure Lane in Sacramento. Lunch and refreshments will be included. To learn more or to register on-line, click HERE.

The conference is made possible thanks in part to the generous participation of our sponsors: AkzoNobel, Asphalt Consulting Services, Dynapac, Holdrege & Kull, InstroTek, Knife River Construction, MeadWestVaco, National Blending, PQ Corp., RoadTec, Telfer Oil, and Valero Refining.