Shapiro and Associates
Specialty: Environmental and regulatory analysis
Sue Sander doesn’t see an uptick in private sector environmental work coming any time soon.
Sander, president of Shapiro and Associates, said, “Things will be pretty constant between now and 2003 assuming the stock market doesn’t make a big swooping dip.”
She added, “Even though interest rates are low, people are unwilling to take risk.” Federal work and having other offices in Portland and Boise has cushioned the softness in the Puget Sound private sector market, Sander said.
“In terms of our client base, our federal clients are clients that use us via rosters, and open end contracts are where we’re getting our work,” she said.
That said, Sander said Shapiro is having a good year.
“We would have had a phenomenal year if it hadn’t been for personnel change in our Portland office,” she said.
Earlier this year, a new firm, Natural Resource Planning Services hung out its shingle. That firm has a number of people formally with Shapiro’s Portland office. Sander said there is an ongoing dispute, legal and otherwise, about how that transpired.
Shapiro’s Boise office is doing well, Sander said, with about a dozen jobs under way for the Idaho Department of Transportation.
In Portland, the firm is working on facility expansions for Nike and Hyundai as well as Endangered Species Act compliance projects.
In Seattle, Shapiro is working on a water resources master plan for the King County Department of Natural Resources and environmental work for a new or rehabbed Magnolia Bridge.
Also, Shapiro is working on a biological assessment for Lake Washington in conjunction with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the National Marine Fisheries Service.
Sander said at the federal level environmental restrictions are easing.
“I think that under the current administration things are loosening a wee bit, although the ESA is continuing to prevent development.” Also, on a project-level, she said, “There’s still constipation in the federal sector related to permits.”
Sander said Shapiro’s strength rests on the experience of its staff, many of whom have worked with, or for, resource agencies for decades.
“Its just not a hot market right now,” she said. “The good news is the staff I have right now are really great people.”
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