Mr. Topper`s News - Louisiana Asphalt Pavement Association
Mr. Topper’s News
November December 2004
The Voice of
Volume 4, Issue 6
Louisiana Asphalt Pavement Association
P.O. Box 80640 4815 Jamestown Ave., Suite 103
Baton Rouge, LA 70808
Phone: (225) 927-9737 Fax: (225) 927-9738
Web Page: www.lahotmix.org
E-mail: [email protected] & [email protected]
Special Interest Articles:
• DOTD Secretary Announces
$20 million Savings?
Quotes on Government
Storms Hit Coast
Gordon S. Leblanc
DOTD Secretary Announces $20 Million Savings
Johnny Bradberry, DOTD Secretary, announced recently that three major bridge projects will be
finished two years ahead of schedule, spuring future economic development in south Louisiana and
saving the state at least $20 million. The bridges shown below are part of the TIMED program and
will be completed by 2010, two years ahead of schedule. Secretary Bradberry stated “Governor
Blanco has made economic development her top priority, and this administration is not only
tearing down barriers to development, we literally are building bridges to opportunity.” Officials
in St. Francisville and Jefferson Parish were pleased by the announcement. Curtis Jelks, Chairman
of the Zachary Taylor Parkway Commission and Aaron Broussard, Jefferson Parish President
commended Mr. Bradberry for his leadership in accelerating the program. The Transportation
Infrastructure Model for Economic Development (TIMED) program also includes four-laning
three north-south routes (US 171, US 167, US 165), improvements to US 61, US 90, LA15, LA 3241,
Erhart Boulevard, Tchoupitoulas Corridor and West Napoleon. The program also paid for
improvements at the Louis Armstrong International Airport and the Port of New Orleans.
DOTD has added approximately $30 million of
new projects to the letting schedule for this
fiscal year to address the needs on rural
roads. The DOTD maintains approximately
6000 miles of roads classified as rural minor
collectors and local roads. Roads with these
classifications do not qualify for federal
highway funds for preservation. The 26 new
projects will improve approximately 120 miles
of Non-Federal Aid (NFA) rural roads in the
Each of the nine DOTD Districts received a
prorated portion of the $30 million for projects
in their districts based on the number of miles
of these ineligible routes. Districts 03, 04 and
08 have been given special permission to take
bids on some of the projects in the districts
rather than at headquarters. All of these
projects will be bid in November and
December 2004. Bids will be taken on the first
of these projects on November 17, 2004.
Huey P. Long
Baton Rouge is the 24th worst city in America in terms of sprawl including high traffic
congestion, little mixed-use zoning, poor air quality, poor public transportation, and
inconvenience for pedestrians. - www.smartgrowthamerica.com - BRNEXT
Baton Rouge motorist spend an addition $647 each in extra vehicle operating costs every year,
due to increased vehicle repair costs, tire wear and additional fuel consumption - over 150%
higher than the national average of $255 per year. -The Road Information Program Report, Dec.03
Mr. Topper’s News
Page 2 of 8
Reflections of great minds on Government
“Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress, But I repeat myself.”
“I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to
lift himself up by the handle.”
“A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.”
George Bernard Shaw
“A liberal is someone who feels a great debt to his fellow man, which debt he proposes to pay off with your
G. Gordon Liddy
“ Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner.”
James Bovard, Civil Libertarian
“ Foreign aid might be defined as a transfer of money from poor people in rich countries to rich people in poor
Douglas Casey, Classmate of Bill Clinton at Georgetown
“Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.”
P.J. O’Rourke, Civil Libertarian
“ Government is the great fiction, through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody
Frederic Bastiat, French Economist 1801-1850
“Government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps
moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.”
Ronald Reagan - 1986
“ I don’t make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.”
“ If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it’s free.”
“ If you want government to intervene domestically, you’re a liberal. If you want government to intervene
overseas, you’re a conservative. If you want government to intervene everywhere, you’re a moderate. If you
don’t want government to intervene anywhere, you’re an extremist.”
Joseph Sobran - 1995
“In general, the art of government consists in taking as much money as possible from one party of the citizens
to give to the other.”
Voltaire – 1764
“ Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest in you.”
Pericles – 495-429 BC
“No man’s life, liberty or property is safe while the legislature is in session.” Mark Twain –1866
“The government is like a baby’s alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no responsibility at
“ The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of the blessings. The inherent blessing of socialism is
the equal sharing of misery.”
“The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the taxidermist leaves the skin.”
“A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have.”
Thomas Jefferson, Famous Revolutionary
“There is no distinctly native American criminal class, save Congress.”
Mr. Topper’s News
Page 3 of 8
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from LAPA
Greetings From DIXIE
Don and Glenyss hope and pray for a Safe
and Happy Holiday Season to all of our
members, customers, colleagues and their
families in Louisiana and across the U.S.
...I pray that on this day [Christmas] when only
peace and good-will are preached to mankind,
better thoughts may fill the hearts of our enemies
and turn them to peace. - Robert E. Lee, 1807-1870 -
Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a
state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill,
to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real
spirit of Christmas. Calvin Coolidge 30th President of the U.S.
The hot mix asphalt industry is a
national leader in recycling its
product. Twice as much asphalt
pavement is recycled as paper, glass,
plastic and aluminum combined. As
you can see from the chart, over 80
million tons of asphalt pavement is
recycled annually. This results in
lower costs for the nation’s taxpayers
and it increases the availability of
valuable landfill space across the U.S.
Mr. Topper’s News
Page 4 of 8
SECRETARY WORKING TO GET HOUSE IN ORDER
Despite a $10 billion backlog in state highway projects, it will be at
least 2006 before any tax or fee hike is sought to pay for
improvements according to DOTD Secretary Johnny Bradberry. He
said the highway agency suffers from image problems, and he must
address that issue before requesting new tax dollars. "We are not in
a position ... to ask the public for more money." Gov. Kathleen
Blanco named him to the post in March where he succeeded former
Secretary Kam Movassaghi who has often said the state needed to
immediately spend at least $200 million a year more for highways.
Bradberry agreed with part of Movassaghi's view.” This state has a
$10 billion backlog in work we need to do," he said. "The state has
a real issue around money. It has a big backlog.” He suggested that
$200 million a year is not enough. "When I ask for money, it is
going to be a significant amount of money," Bradberry said.
However, he said, the DOTD first needs time to make its operations
more efficient, which he said will take up much of 2005. "We have
a negative image with the public," he said. "We are always on the
defensive. I hate playing defense." In 2006 a tax hike for highways
could only be considered in a special legislative session. Gov.
Blanco faces re-election in 2007, which means any push for higher
highway taxes then is unlikely. "I think there will come a time in the
first term when it is likely we will be discussing more (highway)
money, whether it comes from tolls, whether it comes from an
increased tax, whatever," Bradberry told news reporters after his
address. But the first step, he said, is a detailed plan to make his
department more efficient. He hopes to present the plan to Blanco
and top lawmakers early next year. "My message to you is, before
we ask for more money from the state and citizens of the state, we
need to get our house in order," Bradberry said. "How long that is
going to take I can't tell you," he said. "But I would hope in the next
year and a half to two years we will have that out of the way."
Source: The Advocate
The highway department is sometimes
the target of complaints that it is
wasteful, unresponsive and slow to
finish projects. "Are we getting the
most out of our people at DOTD? We
are not," Bradberry said. He said that,
while the agency has a good base of
employees, he plans to study
department operations and decide what
changes are needed to boost public
trust. Motorists pay state and federal
taxes of 38.4 cents a gallon. The federal
portion is 18.4 cents a gallon. The state
portion is 20 cents a gallon. Bradberry
noted that the 16-cent portion of the
state's gasoline tax has not changed
since 1984. He said it now has the
buying power of 9 cents per gallon
while steel, cement and other
construction costs continue to rise. The
highway department has an annual
operating budget of $1.6 billion. About
two-thirds of the $600 million
construction budget is for preservation
rather than new roads and bridges.
Mark your calendar for LAPA Convention: June 1-5, 2005 Point Clear, Alabama
Join & Attend
"Patriotism is as much a virtue
as justice, and is as necessary
for the support of societies as
natural affection is for the
support of families."
Benjamin Rush, Founding Father 1745-1813
Mark Your Calendar:
The Big Island
"The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be
expected on a nation that disregards the eternal
rules of order and right, which Heaven itself has
ordained." –George Washington“The orderly transfer of authority as called for in the
Constitution routinely takes place as it has for almost two
centuries and few of us stop to think how unique we really are. In
the eyes of many in the world, this every-4-year ceremony we
accept as normal is nothing more than a miracle… We are a
united people pledged to maintaining a political system which
guarantees individual liberty to a greater degree than any
- Ronald Reagan-
Mr. Topper’s News
5 of 8News
5 of 8
Hurricane Season Hits the Gulf Coast Hard
Photos from Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Alabama
Not for fame or reward
Not for place or for rank
Not lured by ambition
Or goaded by necessity
But in simple
Obedience to duty
As they understood it
These men suffered all
Dared all - and died.
Inscription above from the Confederate Monument at Arlington attributed to Rev. R.H. McKim, Confederate Chaplain
“Carved out of the endurance of granite, God created his masterpiece---the Confederate soldier.”
---Lillian Henderson --"The South is a land that has known sorrows;
it is a land that has broken the ashen crust and
moistened it with tears; a land scarred and
riven by the plowshare of war and billowed
with the graves of her dead; but a land of
legend, a land of song, a land of hallowed and
What’s Happening in DC ?
Transportation Construction Coalition Fly-In
April 26-27, 2005 Washington, DC
Jay Hansen, Vice President, Government Affairs
National Asphalt Pavement Association
and Senator, TN
"To that land every drop of my blood, every
fiber of my being, every pulsation of my heart,
is consecrated forever. I was born of her womb;
I was nurtured at her breast; and when my last
hour shall come, I pray GOD that I may be
pillowed upon her bosom and rocked to sleep
within her tender and encircling arms."
Page 6 of 8
Mr. Topper’s News
LAPA’S 46th CONVENTION
MARK YOUR CALENDAR. . . . .
JUNE 1-5, 2005
THE MARRIOTT GRAND HOTEL
POINT CLEAR, ALABAMA
Attractions: Golf, Spa, Swimming, Biking, Sailing, Beach, Shopping, Nature
Trails, Jet Skis, Horseback Riding, Antiquing, and MORE!!!!!!
WATCH YOUR MAIL FOR REGISTRATION FORMS TO FOLLOW!!!
FOR MORE INFORMATION CALL 225-927-9737
Support LAPA By Attending the Annual Meeting and Convention
[Professional Development Hours (PDH’s) will be awarded for technical sessions.]
UPCOMING EVENTS 2004
FLORIDA or BUST
Congress pulled a fast one as part of the
2001 tax cut. It raised the exemption from
federal estate taxes and lowered estate tax
rates but it financed the federal breaks in
part by cutting the credit for state taxes
paid-to 75% of state taxes in 2002, 50% in
2003, 25% in 2004 and 0% in 2005. That
left states a hard choice: forgo estate tax
revenue or impose as estate tax that
would cost real money and might drive
wealthy folks away. The good news for
heirs is that 25 states are swallowing the
revenue loss. They are collecting only the
amount of estate tax the feds give a credit
for, meaning that in 2005, they will get
zero. The following states are heirfriendly and you need not worry about
state estate taxes:
California Mississippi Texas
Source: Forbes Magazine
Mississippi Transportation Institute Conference, Biloxi, MS
Southeast Asphalt User Producer Group, Baton Rouge, LA
League of Cities, Indianapolis, IN
TRB Annual Meeting, Washington, DC
Jan. 31-Feb. 2:
Association of Modified Asphalt Producers (AMAP) Conference, Las Vegas, NV
32nd Annual Rocky Mountain Asphalt Conference & Equipment Show, Denver, CO
NAPA 50th Annual Convention, The Big Island of Hawaii
Police Jury Association Annual Convention, Kenner, LA
AAPT Annual Meeting, Hyatt Regency, Long Beach California
ConExpo-ConAgg, 2005, Las Vegas, Nevada
Transportation Construction Coalition Fly-In, Washington, DC
LAPA’s 46th Annual Convention, Marriott Grand Hotel, Point Clear, AL
NAPA’s Mid Year Committee Meetings,
State Asphalt Pavement Associations Annual Meeting, Aspen, Colorado
SASHTO Annual Meeting, Puerto Rico
AASHTO Annual Meeting, Nashville, TN
Nov 30-Dec 2
Louisiana Parish Engineers Association Fall Conference
SEAUPG Annual Conference, TBD
Asphalt Institute Annual Meeting, Phoenix, Arizona
Reflections of the Presidential Election
Mr. Topper’s News
First off, I can't remember a more exhilarating election day, or a more important presidential
lifetime. And now that it's over, as much as I am overjoyed by the result, I find myself reflecting just as much
on what the election tells me about the American people, and it's hard to be anything less that very
impressed. Voter turnout was at a high percentage not seen in forty years, and as a result, President Bush
won with the highest vote total of any president in U.S. history.
Mr. Topper’s News
But my appreciation for the American people is only in part a product of their backing the guy I supported.
More telling for me was how they apparently dealt with a barrage of factors, and how they did, or did not,
allows some of them to determine their choice. In particular I have in mind the last-minute videotape of
Osama bin Laden.
District – Louisiana
Talk about your October surprises! On Friday, October 29, just four days before Americans went to the polls
to choose their president, the evil terrorist emerged with a lengthy "address to the American people,"
obviously with the aim of interjecting himself into the minds of the electorate and influencing the outcome of
the election. It was a strange message, mixing many anti-American myths found in Michael Moore's
propaganda film. But more importantly, he seemed to be offering an unbelievable devil's bargain with the
American people: cease your war on terrorism in the Middle East, and the terrorists will leave you alone.
From the moment the tape emerged, political pundits of all stripes began trying to decipher -- just as bin
Laden expected, I imagine -- what the impact might be on the voting public. There was talk among liberals
about how it might hurt the president, as a reminder to the American people that the mastermind of the 9/11
attacks was still on the loose, seemingly confirming charges by Senator Kerry that the president had fumbled
the war on al Qaeda by taking the war to Iraq.
On the flip side, conservatives speculated that the tape might somehow benefit the president's election
hopes for the basic reason that it would remind the American people of terrorism as an issue, that the
terrorist menace was still very real, and that his leadership in handling terrorism had long been his strongest
quality. There was also the reminder of Spain, in which the pre-election attacks in Madrid were seen as
punishment against a conservative government that had been tough on terrorists, and in which the people of
Spain reacted by voting out of office that same government. Conservatives and others here in America
speculated that the bin Laden tape would not find the American people so easily intimidated, and in fact it
would backfire in a surge in Bush voters wishing to send a message to the terrorists that they are very
different from Europeans. I myself could not avoid wondering, as I stood in the election booth, just what kind
of reaction would come from bin Laden and other enemies of America around the world, should President
Bush not win a second term. Visions of bin Laden gloating and Saddam Hussein celebrating in his jail cell
made me wince, and I worried about how the rest of the American people would feel to see the same thing
But while similar thoughts as these may have played in the back of the mind of many people in America, and
may have contributed to some increased support for President Bush, there's little evidence to suggest that it
was a significant factor. Looking at daily tracking polls the week prior to the release of bin Laden's tape, you
saw the president's lead hovering at an average of about three percentage points. But in the days following
the tape, and up to election day itself, that three point lead remained essentially unchanged.
What does this tell us about the American people? Did they simply ignore it? I don't think so. I think they
looked at it, digested it, and then refused to let it affect how they felt about the candidates prior to its
release. In a way, this is the strongest possible reaction and the best possible outcome. Had the American
people flocked to one candidate or the other, bin Laden could have rejoiced that he had in fact served as an
influence on the American people. Yes, I still believe that it might have felt worse for me had bin Laden
achieved threatening Americans away from supporting President Bush. Not that I in any way believe the
terrorists supported Senator Kerry -- I would never say such a thing, and I believe Senator Kerry, if elected,
would have tried his best to defeat bin Laden. But at the same time, the appearance of a Bush defeat would
have been taken as a victory for bin Laden in his own eyes.
That the American people were able to factor all of this in and then ultimately decide not to let it be a factor in
their decision shows just how much different and stronger they indeed are. It shows that, at the bottom of it
all, they had faith in America, knowing that regardless of who their president is, the terrorists will be
defeated. And by this very act of faith, by sticking to their choice regardless of the terrorist's intent to
change them, the American people, in this one instance, did in fact defeat the terrorists.
2005 Membership Directories
are being printed and will be
available for January mailing.
You should check the 2004
issue for errors. And if you
need extra copies, please
advise Glenyss Naro at:
RED WINS OVER BLUE AGAIN
George W. Bush is
reelected to another
four year term as
President of the
United States on
November 2, 2004.
Producer Contractor Members Associate Members
Louisianan Contractor Magazine
Louisiana Machinery Co.
Barriere Construction Co. LLC
All Equipment & Manufacturing
Louisiana One Call
Benton & Brown
Louisiana Parish Engineers Association
Bessette Development Co.
Astec Industries, Inc.
Louisiana Testing & Inspection, Inc.
W.E. Blain & Sons Inc.
Louisiana TIMED Managers (LTM)
Boh Brothers Construction
Baton Rouge Airport Authority
Marathon Ashland Petroleum
Coastal Bridge & Asphalt Co.
Bengal Transportation Services
D & J Construction
Blacklidge Emulsions, Inc.
Pavement Markings Co.
Bohlin Instruments, Inc.
Dreher Contracting Co., Inc.
Burns Cooley Dennis, Inc
PPM Consultants, Inc.
F.G. Sullivan Construction
C. P. Grace & Associates, Inc.
RCS Contractors, Inc.
Gilbert Southern Corp.
Carmeuse Lime and Stone
Resonant Machines, Inc.
River Mountain Quarries
R.E. Heidt Construction
Component Sales & Services, Inc.
Prairie Contractors, Inc.
Construction Materials, Inc.
Scott Construction Equipment
Huey Stockstill Corporation
Davison Petroleum Products LLC
SJB Group, Inc.
Super Associate Members
Dixie Materials, Inc.
SMECO Grooving & Grinding
Asphalt Products Unlimited Inc.
Donna Fill, Inc.
Soils & Foundation Engineers
Eagle Asphalt Products
Eckstein Marine Services, LLC
Southwest Materials, Inc.
FALCO Lime Company
Ergon Asphalt and Emulsions
St. Paul Surety
H&E Equipment Services L.L.C.
Terral Riverservice, Inc.
Martin Marietta Aggregates
Ingram Barge Co.
Total Petrochemicals USA, Inc.
Koch Materials, Co.
Trans Tech Systems, Inc.
Vulcan Materials Company
Lazenby & Associates
Troxler Electronic Laboratories
Lion Oil Company
TXI Expanded Shale and Clay
P. O. Box 80640
4815 Jamestown Ave., Suite 103
Baton Rouge, LA 70808
We’re on the Web!
See us at:
First Vice President:
Houma, LA Seminar
PEOPLE UPDATE AND PROMOTIONS
Second Vice President:
Associate Member Rep.:
J. Don Weathers
New Producer Members
Lake Charles, LA
LAPA Team at Amedee
Tournament in Gonzales
Mike Hodgkins, VP
Dreher Contracting Co.
West Monroe, LA
Cathy Grace announces
Bryan Grace as V.P., C.P.
Grace & Associates, Inc.
Know Who This Is ?