Featured Articles

What follows are recent articles, speeches and blogs from the Dawson team concerning environmental and regulatory issues. Please read through and see why Dawson & Associates is the nation’s leading firm for resolving complex water and environmental regulatory policy and procedures.

Steps to Successful Permitting on Native American Lands

Applicants seeking federal pipeline permits must appreciate the importance of tribal nation sovereignty, our colleagues Gen. (ret) Rick Stevens and Col. (ret) John Eisenhauer explain in the April 2019 Pipeline & Gas Journal. The two explain ways that federal applicants can hasten federal project approvals by through solid relationships with Native American tribes and the Army Corps of Engineers.

Understanding Corps Of Engineers Approach
to Pipeline Permit Approvals

The United States is in the beginning of a long-term energy revolution. But as Col. (ret) Marc Hildenbrand and John Studt argue in the May 2018 issue of Pipeline and Gas Journal, anyone who thinks the Army Corps of Engineers can be ignored on pipeline and other energy projects risks unnecessary and expensive construction delays.

Turning an infrastructure plan into a reality

The White House’s proposed $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan puts a long-overdue spotlight on our infrastructure needs, writes Gen. (ret) Rick Capka, our Chief Operating Officer since 2008 and formerly Federal Highway Administrator. In this February 2018 opinion piece for The Hill, Rick offers strategies on successful infrastructure planning.

Overcoming Permit Delays: Strategies to speed project approval

Federal permitting delays on infrastructure projects can be expensive, especially for public-private partnerships. But as Gen. (ret) Bob Flowers and Gen. (ret) Charles Williams explain in this article for the January/February 2018 issue of Constructor Magazine, a smart approach to permit applications can accelerate Federal approval for PPP projects times dramatically.

Clarity for the Clean Water Act

Our colleagues Gen. (ret) Bruce Berwick and Larry Liebesman explain the stakes when the Supreme Court hears oral arguments on proper judicial review of various challenges to the EPA’s 2015 Waters of the U.S. rule. This appeared in the October 10, 2017 issue of The Washington Times.

Thoughts on successful infrastructure partnerships

Public-private partnerships are a crucial part of the Trump Administration’s efforts to rebuild America’s infrastructure. Writing in a September 13, 2017 special section of The Washington Times, Gen. (ret) Charles Williams and Gary Loew explain from firsthand experience how to expedite Federal permit approvals for public private partnerships and manage PPP operations effectively.

How to reform flood insurance

By October 2017, Congress must reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program. Writing the August 7, 2017 Engineering News-Record, our colleague Joe Coughlin, who helped design FEMA’s Mandatory Purchase of Flood Insurance Guidelines, offers suggestions on improving the program.

What Infrastructure Needs: Smart Permitting

The Trump administration’s infrastructure plans rely heavily on public-private partnerships. Writing in the July 12, 2017 Engineering News-Record, our colleague Lt. Gen. Bob Flowers, who commanded the Army Corps of Engineers, offers advice on how the Administration could streamline the Federal approval process.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers an Unfair Target

Recent events involving Native American tribes and private developers highlight the confusing processes for federal environmental permitting. As Senior Advisor John Eisenhauer, who commanded the Corps of Engineers Portland District from 2011-13, explains in this February 3, 2017 Roll Call essay, many commentators and even elected officials unfairly target the Corps of Engineers with vitriolic and often tremendously unfair criticism.

U.S. Supreme Court’s ‘Waters of the U.S.’ gift to the Trump Administration

On January 13, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear arguments over which federal court should hear challenges to the EPA’s 2015 Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule. Dawson attorney Larry Liebesman explains in The Hill how SCOTUS’ action is likely to affect Congress and the Trump Administration.

Value Adjusted Total Evaluation Price: Source Selection Objectivity Coming Your Way?

New Department of Defense source selection procedures include a process called Value Adjusted Total Evaluated Price (VATEP). In this article from the December 2016 Contract Management Magazine, Dawson colleague Jimm Rich, formerly head of the Contracting Division for the Corps of Engineers’ Baltimore, Kansas City and Galveston districts, explains VATEP and how it relates to DOD’s better buying power guidance.

The 1986 Water Resources Development Act: Federal Policy lessons from someone who was there

In September 1986, Congress and the President agreed on major changes to Federal water programs. On the 30th anniversary of the 1986 Water Resources Development Act (WRDA), our founder Bob Dawson, who had a crucial role in the negotiations, reflects on WRDA’s success and its lessons for Federal water policy. This interview appeared in the September 2016 Municipal Water Leader.

Louisiana Flooding Makes Case for Changes to Insurance Program

Senior Advisor Joe Coughlin, Jr., who helped design FEMA’s Mandatory Purchase of Flood Insurance Guidelines, suggests lessons for Congress from the 2016 Louisiana flooding.

Flood control lessons from Louisiana’s flooding

The flooding that hit southern Louisiana in late summer 2016 was devastating. Our colleague Tom Sands, former Commanding General of the Army Corps of Engineers Lower Mississippi Valley and North Atlantic Divisions, has suggestions for reforming Federal flood control policy. This appeared in The Hill’s “Congress Blog” on September 7, 2016.

Vietnam: Reflections & memories

Engineers were among the first U.S. soldiers to be sent to Vietnam and our colleague Gen. (ret) Ted Stroup offers recollections on his time there. This article appeared in The Military Engineer’s Vietnam Commemorative Issue, Vol. 108, No. 703. Reprinted with permission of the Society of American Military Engineers. Copyright 2016. TME Vietnam Commemorative Issue may be purchased here.

From West Point to Vietnam

Lt. Col. (ret) Bob Wolff, PhD, PE, who joined us in 2015, recounts what the Army Corps of Engineers faced in Vietnam during the late 1960s and what the Corps was able to accomplish. This article appeared in The Military Engineer’s Vietnam Commemorative Issue, Vol. 108, No. 703. Reprinted with permission of the Society of American Military Engineers. Copyright 2016. TME Vietnam Commemorative Issue may be purchased here.

Contributions of the Corps’ Planning Process: Reducing Hurricane and Flood Risks to the Nation

The Army Corps of Engineers’ Civil Works Program has always been at the forefront of situation-specific planning. In this article for the April 2016 Municipal Water Leader, our colleague Ed Dickey, who was Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civll Works explains how the Corps has been a pioneer in applying incremental analysis on its ecological restoration and multipurpose plans. .

Market Research: The crucial first step in Federal contracting

Before a federal agency releases a Request for Proposals, it issues a Sources Sought announcement, which is an essential component of the government contracting process. Dawson colleague John Moore, who headed contracting at the Corps of Engineers Savannah District for 18 years, explains this process and the key role of market research in the May 2016 issue of The Military Engineer.

Understanding the Endangered Species Act’s role in Federal water permitting

Obtaining an Endangered Species Act certification is a crucial part of Clean Water Act permitting. In the April 2016 issue of The Military Engineer, Dawson’s Bill Hartwig and Dr. Jon Deason, PhD explain why all construction projects with a Federal nexus must comply with the Act’s terms and how to expedite this process.

Port dredging: 5 ways to expedite approval from the Army Corps of Engineers

Port and channel dredging requires approval from the Army Corps of Engineers. But approvals are often delayed due to lack of planning for material disposal. Writing in the spring 2016 Seaports, published by the American Association of Port Authorities, our colleagues Brig. Gen. (Ret) Rick Capka, Linda Morrison and Elizabeth Fagot offer 5 recommendations for expediting Corps approvals.

On land and water, voice of voters ignored

Few environmental issues as as important to Florida as water protection and management. Senior Advisor Estus Whitfield, who was the principal environmental advisor to four Florida Governors, weighs in on the urgency of this issue in March 27, 2015 The Tampa Bay Times.

Environmental Permitting: Getting to “Yes” with the Army Corps of Engineers

Developers often miscalculate when negotiating with federal officials over environmental issues, especially water management. Our colleagues Col. (Ret) John Eisenhauer and Rob Vining explain how to work more effectively on these issues. John was commander of the Army Corps of Engineers Portland District and Rob served four years as head of the Corps’ Civil Works Programs, Management Division. This appeared in the March 2015 Constructor.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Change Management Strategies

Dawson colleagues Maj. Gen. (Ret) Bo Temple and Dwight Beranek explain how the  US Army Corps of Engineers leadership and development programs should evolve to meet future challenges in this January 2015 article in The Military Engineer.

George Washington Goethals: What Engineers Can Learn From an Exemplary Leader

In this October 2014 speech about the building of the Panama Canal, Dawson Senior Advisor Maj. Gen. (Ret) Bo Temple offers his thoughts about leadership in the face of overwhelming adversity.  This speech was presented to the American Society of Civil Engineers, which presented Bo with its Parcel-Sverdrup Engineer Management Award.

Our Mission, Our History

Senior Advisor Lt. Gen. (Ret) Ted Stroup, who joined our team in 2013, offers thoughts on the Army Corps of Engineers’ history and mission in this article for the August 2014 issue of The Military Engineer. Ted’s article is adapted from his acceptance speech upon being presented the Society of American Military Engineers’ 2014 Golden Eagle Award for his contributions to national security.

Frying Birds in Midair

Senior Advisor Greg Walcher, who helped the State of Colorado negotiate settlement of the largest Western water case in U.S. history, offers a slightly satirical look at a downside to solar development in the August 2014 American Spectator.

Gold DeFleury Acceptance Remarks

Our colleague Maj. Gen. (Ret) Bo Temple, former Acting Commanding General of the Army Corps of Engineers, delivered this Gold De Fleury acceptance speech on April 25, 2014 at Ft. Leonard Wood.

How to Deal with the Corps

Senior Vice President Maj. Gen. (Ret) Don Riley, who was Deputy Commanding General of the Army Corps of Engineers, gives suggestions on working effectively with the Corps in Engineering News-Record. (25 February 2014)

Can We Keep the Public Safe From Floods?

Senior Vice President Don Riley discusses Federal approaches to flood control policy in this article that appeared in the January 2014 Water Resources Impact.

Our Mission, Our History

In a December 2013 speech to the Society of American Military Engineers, Lt. Gen. (Ret) Henry Hatch, who was Commanding General of the Army Corps of Engineers, stresses engineering’s role in future sustainability.

Invasive vs. Endangered Species: US Biodiversity and Economy at Risk

Senior Advisor Scott Cameron explains the national threat posed by invasive species and urges Corporate America to take a more nation-wide interest in fighting their spread in this November 2013 blog for Conservefewell.org.

Building Flood Risk Reduction Infrastructure Pays Off and Can Even Pay Back

Maj. Gen. (Ret) Bo Temple co-authored this look at flood risk reduction infrastructure in the August 6, 2013 Engineering News-Record.

Perspectives on Afghanistan

In this article for The Naples Daily News, Col. Joseph Schmitt shares his experience supporting military operations in Afghanistan. (26 December 2010)