Membership Meetings


Our normal schedule for presentation/lunch meetings is (usually) on the third or fourth Thursday of the month, at the Nevada County Contractors Association office at 12:00 PM. The address is 149 Crown Point Court, Grass Valley, CA 95945.


August 25, 2022

Economics and Mining

Mining is a tough and speculative business and is very sensitive to global economics.  Inflation, supply and demand, and whimsical humans behaving in unpredictable ways make mining a challenging place to make a living.


Economics is known as the “dismal science”, and humans have been trying to figure it out since money was invented.


Mining is about moving stuff from here to there, and then mechanically breaking the material down into very small pieces.  The Newtonian laws governing this cannot be broken, as far as we know.


Join us in a discussion of Economics and Mining.


Rich Peevers, MEng, PE, holds degrees from Chico State University (Geology), UNR (MBA Finance), and Oregon State University (MEng. Civil/Environmental Engineering).  After nearly 20 years working for mines in northern Nevada, Rich joined Vector Engineering, which then became Ausenco and then Geo-Logic.  Rich then transitioned to an Ausenco client, Whittle Consulting, based in Melbourne, Australia.  Rich has been doing project optimization studies for Whittle since 2010.


May 22, 2022

Bonzi Sanitation Landfill Final Closure, Stanislaus County CA

Presented by Jake Russell, PE and Jordan Graham, PE

Geo-Logic Associates


Under contract with the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery CalRecycle” GLA prepared the Final Closure Plan and Construction Documents for final closure of the Bonzi Sanitation Landfill.  GLA also performed Construction Quality Assurance (CQA) and Construction Management (CM) during construction which was completed in April, 2022. CalRecycle assumed responsibility for the site after years of inaction from the site owner and their inability to properly fund and manage the closure and post closure activities. 

Challenges included:

  • Limited available funding from the State of California
  • Outdated CEQA
  • Multiple stake holders including local and state agencies: RWQCB, Stanislaus County, APCD, and CalRecycle, site owners, neighbors, etc.
  • History of enforcement actions from multiple agencies
  • Angry neighbors
  • Shallow groundwater with VOC impacts from the landfill
  • Flat topography
  • Within the flood plain of the Tuolumne River
  • Historic storm events during construction (October and December 2021)


The presentation will include an overview of the closure design and construction and discussion of how the project team navigated the challenging regulatory history, design constraints, and construction challenges. 


Jake Russell has been a resident of Nevada County for over 20 years after completing his BS in Environmental Engineering at Humboldt State. He has 24 years of focused solid waste engineering consulting and construction experience. As manager of our engineering group (Grass Valley, Granite Bay, Bend, and Denver), he is responsible for the civil design, permitting, and construction management of solid waste, composting, and impoundment projects throughout the United States and abroad.

Jordan Greenman grew up in Nevada County and returned home after studying Civil Engineering at UC Davis. She now has 6 years of experience with Geo-Logic Associates and has taken on lead designer and project manager roles on many projects. She focuses on landfill expansion and closure design and compost facility design.




April 28, 2022

PG&E Exchequer – Yosemite National Park 70kV Transmission Tower Replacement


Approximately 67 transmission towers were planned to be replaced along the Highway 140 corridor, in Mariposa County, California, from just south of Midpines to the substation located approximately 6 miles from the park entrance.  The replacement towers consisted of 4-legged lattice towers, wooden poles, and steel monopoles.


The foundation system that NV5 recommended was a modified foundation system that had been successfully used for Gazex avalanche cannons in the high Sierra.  For the PG&E Exchequer-Yosemite foundation system, NV5 designed concrete foundations that were bolted to the rock/soil with sleeved anchor holes.  Rock anchors were drilled with a template to ensure alignment with the adaptor plate.  The adaptor plate was designed to fit the selected tower legs.  All dimensions for the anchors and adaptor plates were laid out in AutoCAD, and the steel fabricator and drilling contractor used the AutoCAD drawings and precision cutting methods to align anchors and through bolt holes.


Concrete Foundations

The concrete foundations were hand-excavated on steep terrain into competent or fractured rock with downhill shear keyways.  Hard rock that could not be easily excavated was drilled and dowelled with No. 6 rebar to aid in placing form boards.


Anchor Bolts

Four rock anchors were installed at the four corner legs and laid out to accept the outer bolt hole of the legs which had the highest compression and tensile forces.  Anchor bolts consisted of No. 11, 14 and 18, hot dipped galvanized 150 ksi bars.   Anchor bolt loads varied from 70 to 285 kips.



Our foundation system was installed quickly and efficiently.  Originally, PG&E was prepared to set towers after all the foundations were installed.  However, due to NV5’s efficiency and precision, PG&E set lattice towers within minutes of approval of the pullout resistance of the foundation anchor bolts.

Outback Construction Inc. was the general contractor for the project, Neil’s Controlled Blasting performed the drilling, placement and testing of the anchor bolts, and NV5 provided the engineering design, quality control and proof and performance testing. 


Chuck Kull

Chuck Kull is the Principal Engineer at NV5.  He was the Founding Principal of Holdrege & Kull, Consulting Engineers and Geologists (H&K), which was established in 1993.  In 2017, H&K joined NV5 Global, Inc.  Chuck has designed and overseen geotechnical engineering projects throughout California for 38 years.  His professional engineering background includes transportation and infrastructure design for the public and private sector; forensic engineering and disaster mitigation; mining and reclamation; shoring and tie-back design; geo-structural design and rock bolting for large penstock thrust blocks, bridge abutments, tunnels, and towers; and earthwork grading projects in challenging soil conditions. 


Will Last

Will Last joined NV5 as an engineering intern.  After graduating from Boise State University, he returned to work as a full-time engineer, and has now been with NV5 for 2 years.  He has experience in subsurface exploration, foundation and retaining wall design, slope stability analysis, and rock bolt design and testing.

Will is the 2016 recipient of an EANC scholarship.



March 24, 2022

The vision for the RV park started in 2018 with a meeting at Humpty Dumpty restaurant.  After sketching a few things on a piece of paper and explaining the CEQA process, the two local developers wanted to move full steam ahead.  More than 3 years later, the project received final approved at Grass Valley City Council on January 25 2022.  The project is currently in the design phase and the developers hope to break ground this summer.  


Rob Wood is the Principal Planner and CEO at Millennium Planning & Engineering.  He is a certified planner with over 22 years experience in land use,  environmental planning and project management. Rob has a broad range of experience including land development projects and compliance with CEQA and NEPA requirements.


Rob was born and raised in Grass Valley.  After 4 years in the Marine Corps, he returned to Grass Valley and began working at Cranmer Engineering doing perc tests and drafting while taking night classes at Sierra College.  He later worked for Vector Engineering until transferring to UNR.  In 1999, he returned to Grass Valley to work for SCO until January 1, 2018 (which was the start of Millennium).



February 17, 2022

Commercial Street Project consists of roadway rehabilitation of Commercial Street between Union Street and Pine Street. Sidewalk will be widened and crosswalks enhanced to provide safe, convenient and efficient pedestrian access within the Downtown Historic District.  Street improvements include replacement of deteriorated pavement, drainage improvements, granite curbs, gas lights, and replacement of water and sewer pipe that was originally placed in the 1880’s. Nevada City is the County seat with Courthouse, Probate Dept. and District Attorney located on or adjacent to this street. There is significant use by pedestrians and vehicles both during the work day and during evenings and weekends due to the restaurants, shops and bars in this area.  City residents, downtown merchants,  and other members of the public participated in the development of the design in several public meetings, workshops, mailers and online surveys.

Bryan McAlister is a civil engineer and surveyor currently serving as City Engineer for the City of Nevada City.    Bryan has been actively involved in projects in Nevada County for more than 20 years.   He was drawn to this small town community and its environment as a ‘great place to live and raise kids’ after going to college and working for a number of years in Southern CA. 


January 20, 2022

Please join us for a presentation by Lillian Sparks of Millennium Planning and Engineering about the design and construction of the new Dutch Bros Coffee in the Brunswick Basin.  


November 11, 2021

Mike Dent from Nevada County and Gus Becerra from the Regional Housing Authority will talk about the two projects they are involved with in Western Nevada County.  Cashin’s Field is a new construction 51-unit multi-family affordable housing project targeting low-income families making up to 60% of area median income; and Brunswick Commons is a new construction 41-unit permanent supportive affordable housing project targeting the homeless and the homeless with mental illness making up to 50% of area median income in Nevada City and Grass Valley respectively.  Mike and Gus will discuss challenges and funding for both projects.


October 28, 2021

On Thursday, October 28, 2021, Pat Nelson, Environmental Officer with Cal OES Recovery, will present the nuts and bolts of the disaster recovery process. 

This will include:

  • The Disaster Declaration Process,
  • Initial Actions to address deployment of Emergency Protective Measures,
  • How Local, State, and Federal Agencies coordinate Recovery Processes,
  • Environmental Protection Plan Implementation. 

Pat has been responsible for the recovery processes for the Camp Fire, the 2020, and 2021 Wildfire Recovery efforts.


August 26, 2021


Rebuilding Paradise

The Camp Fire of 2018 devastated the Town of Paradise and surrounding areas.  This presentation will give a brief overview of the aftermath of the destruction, from clean up efforts to creating safe drinking water to rebuilding the Town.  You will be informed of efforts currently underway.


Sean Jackson

Sean Jackson is a registered Civil Engineer in CA.  Sean has a BS in Civil Engineering from CSU Chico.  Sean started his career overseeing bridge and roadway projects with Western Federal Lands Highway Division.  Since then, Sean formed a business with Frank Sands, Jackson & Sands Engineering, Inc., which focuses primarily on the structural analysis of residential homes.