NRMCA e-news
Association & Industry News
True Dispatch
The preliminary estimate of ready mixed concrete production in March is 27.5 million cubic yards, 19% higher than that in March 2015. The estimated ready mixed concrete production in the first quarter of 2016 is 69 million cubic yards, 14% higher than that during the same period in 2015.
 
Ready mixed concrete production is estimated from cement shipments reported by the U.S. Geological Survey. NRMCA members can view more details, including a breakdown by state, here.
It is with sadness that NRMCA notes the recent death of former chairman of the Board of Directors Morris A. Lauwereins. Mr. Lauwereins worked for Material Service Corporation in Chicago in the 1970's and 1980's and during that period served NRMCA in various capacities, culminating in being a member of the Board of Directors and serving as chairman in 1978, succeeding Mr. R.O. Evans and preceding Mr. Fred Bartel. 
 
Mr. Lauwereins was a native of Ogdensburg, NY, and served in the Army in World War II, earning two Purple Hearts, one of which was a result of injuries sustained during the Battle of the Bulge. He was a graduate of Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN, earning a bachelor's degree in civil engineering. He died from complications of lymphoma at the age of 92 on May 14. He would have celebrated his 70th wedding anniversary this September with his wife Betty. Mr. Lauwereins had five children, 10 grandchildren and three great grandchildren. He was living in Kirkland, WA, at the time of his death. He was buried in Tahoma National Cemetery, Kent, WA.
 
Condolences may be mailed to Mrs. Morris Lauwereins, c/o Lynn Holstein, 25927 210th Ave. SE, Maple Valley, WA 98038.
WAM USA, Inc. Putzmeister America, Inc.
Government Affairs
Fritz-Pak Corporation

Media articles on Congress, transportation infrastructure, regulation, taxes and other subjects, each of which relate to the ready mixed concrete industry, are updated each week by NRMCA's Government Affairs staff. To access the most recent compilation of articles for May 16 - 20, 2016, please click here.

If you would like to receive this weekly updated link in a separate e-mail, or if you have questions or comments about the roundup, contact NRMCA’s Jill Landry at jlandry@nrmca.org.

The House Transportation and Infrastructure (T&I) Committee introduced the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 on May 20 and will mark up the bill on May 25. The legislation authorizes projects and activities related to the key missions of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps), including developing and maintaining the nation’s waterway infrastructure and supporting effective and targeted flood protection and environmental restoration needs.

Earlier this year, the Corps released implementation guidelines in response to resiliency language NRMCA was able to have included in the 2014 law. NRMCA successfully secured language in the Water Resources & Reform Development Act of 2014  that directed the Corps to encourage the use of resilient construction techniques in all Corps projects and also secured a definition of "resilient construction techniques". NRMCA defined resilient construction techniques among other things as water resources infrastructure projects that will resist hazards brought on by major disasters and continue to serve the primary function of the water resources infrastructure project following the disaster and have the ability to recover and withstand the disruptive event. NRMCA is continuing to work with the Corps of Engineers Deputy Commanding General for Civil and Emergency Operations Major General Donald Jackson to ensure that the implementation guidelines released throughout the summer months through engineering guides and circulars correspond with the directive of the language passed in the WRRDA.
 
Click here to view the bill in full. Click here to view a summary of the bill. For more information, contact Kerri Leininger at kleininger@nrmca.org.
The House Appropriations Committee marked up the Transportation Housing and Urban Development (THUD) bill on May 24. The bill authorizes $58.2 billion for FY 2017 to fund transportation and housing programs. Total discretionary spending for the Department of Transportation totals $19.2 billion.
 
The House bill contains two provisions that NRMCA advocated to have included because of their direct impact to the ready mixed concrete industry. The first is a fix to the 34-hour restart provision error from last year’s omnibus spending package. The provision continues the suspension of the 34-hour restart requirements until the congressionally-mandated Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) study is concluded. Specifically, the two requirements being suspended are the two off-duty periods between 1 - 5 a.m and the prohibition on using more than one restart during a consecutive 168-hour period. The second is a fix to halt the FMCSA from proceeding with the Safety Fitness Determination rulemaking until all reforms related to the Compliance, Safety and Accountability/Safety Measurement System (CSA/SMS) programs mandated by the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act) are completed.

The proposed new system would remove all the existing ratings and create only one rating, "Unfit". NRMCA believes a major concern with the proposal is that the new proposed methodology utilizes flawed CSA/SMS data and scores, which pursuant to the FAST Act, Congress has directed the agency to completely overhaul just two months ago. NRMCA supports the goal of an easily understandable, rational safety fitness determination system, but the recent rulemaking is built on a flawed foundation and must be fixed. An amendment submitted by Ranking Member David Price (D-NC) to strike both provisions failed to pass the full committee.
 
Click here to view the bill. For more information, contact Jill Landry at jlandry@nrmca.org.
Buildings
NRMCA launched its new Build with Strength initiative last week by hosting a roundtable discussion titled Building with Strength for a Sustainable Future during the International Concrete Sustainability Conference in Washington, DC, in front of an audience of 300 people. The roundtable featured a panel of experts from the design, construction and safety communities, including Eric Coleman, development coordinator of EYC Companies; Randy Kirchain, principal research scientist at MIT; Jon Narva, director of external relations for the National Association of State Fire Marshals and Chris Drew, director of sustainability at Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill. Lionel Lemay of NRMCA moderated the panel discussion aimed at understanding how these construction industry leaders are using concrete for building construction.
 
"Architects must consider the full life-cycle costs of buildings during development," said MIT's Kirchain. "Thinking long-term – beyond the initial phase where we look at construction and materials – is critically important."
 
"In many instances, especially during construction, wood frame buildings are more susceptible and vulnerable to fire damage than similar concrete structures" said Narva of the fire marshals' association. "Because of this, first responders approach fires in these structures differently than they would a less vulnerable concrete structure."
 
"The nature of concrete in construction offers advantages beyond strength and durability," said Coleman of EYC Companies. "Concrete’s composition and mass means heat moves more slowly through the material, keeping buildings warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.  This energy efficiency translates directly into cost-savings over the long-term."
 
Visit www.buildwithstrength.com to learn about concrete construction, its ease of use and creative applications, safety and strength or contact Lionel Lemay at LLemay@nrmca.org or 847-918-7101.
OES
Schwing America, Inc.
Last week, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its long-awaited and contentious final rule to revamp overtime compensation regulations. Specifically, the final rule includes:
 
• Raising the salary threshold for overtime pay from $455/week or $23,660 to $913/week or rather $47,476 per year (which is less than the proposed $50,440 or $970/week);
• Increasing the highly-compensated employee threshold from $100,000 to $134,004;
• Updating the salary threshold every three years, starting in 2020 (will be tied to the 40th percentile of full-time salaried workers in the lowest income region of the country);
• Amending the salary basis test to allow employers to use nondiscretionary bonuses and incentive payments (commissions) to satisfy up to 10 percent of the new standard salary level;
• NOT changing the "duties test" for executive, administrative and professional employees (which was originally hinted at in the proposal); and
• Becoming effective on December 1, 2016 (allowing only 6 months for businesses to prepare). 

Click here and here for more information, factsheets, FAQs and upcoming DOL Webinars on the rule. Click here to view the 508-page final rule.

For more information, contact Kevin Walgenbach at kwalgenbach@nrmca.org.
Does your facility need to report to the Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) Program? Have you run the calculations to determine if your facility does? Do you know what the requirements are and/or how to report if necessary? Now’s the time to obtain answers to all of these questions. Remember, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) TRI Program "tracks the management of more than 650 toxic chemicals that may pose a threat to human health and the environment." Specifically, "U.S. facilities in certain industry sectors must report annually how much of each chemical is released to the environment and/or managed through recycling, energy recovery and treatment." This information is then submitted annually to EPA and compiled in the TRI.

All facilities that handle toxic chemicals, including ready mixed concrete plants, are required to calculate the quantities that were handled and if any quantity is over an allowable threshold, that chemical and amount need to be reported under the program. Should a facility need to report, the reporting deadline is Friday, July 1,
 
Click here for more on the program, listed chemicals, potential for reporting and when/how to report. For more information, contact Gary Mullings at gmullings@nrmca.org or Kevin Walgenbach at kwalgenbach@nrmca.org.
Last week, the White House Office of Management and Budget’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) published the Spring 2016 Unified Agenda. The Unified Agenda is the clearinghouse for public access to federal regulatory agencies’ respective regulatory actions, covering 60 departments, agencies and commissions, including EPA, OSHA, FMCSA and the IRS. Some of the regulatory actions include, but are not limited to, FMCSA’s Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) Speed Limiters and CDL Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse rules, OSHA’s Backing, Powered Industrial Trucks, Lock-Out/Tag-Out and Fall Protection rules, as well as, EPA’s Heavy-Duty Vehicle Phase 2 Emissions Reduction rule.

Click here to view all updated agenda issues. For more information, contact Kevin Walgenbach at kwalgenbach@nrmca.org.
The June 28 – July 1 Plant Manager Certification class in Denver is already half full, so do not delay registration. There will  be one more class in 2016: December 13 – 16, in Anaheim, CA.  Registration is also open for the California class.
 
June 28 - July 1, Denver
December 13 - 16, Anaheim, CA
 
Click here for more information, registration options and staff contact.
McNeilus Truck & Manufacturing, Inc. The Euclid Chemical Company McInnis USA, Inc. Xypex Chemical Corp
Education & Training
The Educational Activities Committee invites ready mix producers to submit their company’s most innovative training initiatives of 2015-2016. Companies must submit their entries no later than Friday, July 29. The Innovation in Training Award winner will be recognized at NRMCA's ConcreteWorks to be held in September in Nashville.  Additionally, the winning submission will be featured in a best-practices article in NRMCA's quarterly magazine, Concrete InFocus. MTSU's Concrete Industry Management program faculty will serve as judges.
 
Click here or contact NRMCA's Eileen Dickson at 240-485-1164 or by e-mail, edickson@nrmca.org.
Calendar
*Please note that e-mail and direct links to each event listed below can be accessed from NRMCA's Web site.

May 26, Webinar
Seven Things You Can Do To Place More Concrete in Buildings
Email: Lionel Lemay, 847-918-7101
 
June 6 - 8, Silver Spring, MD
Concrete Durability Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
 
June 28 - July 1, Centennial, CO
Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
 
June 23, Webinar
Seven Things You Can Do To Place More Concrete in Buildings
Email: Lionel Lemay, 847-918-7101
 
June 28, Ronkonkoma, NY
Building Green With Concrete
Email: Tien Peng, 206-913-8535
 
June 30, Fairfax, VA
Building Green With Concrete
Email: Tien Peng, 206-913-8535 
 
September 18 - 20, Nashville, TN
NRMCA's ConcreteWorks 2016
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
 
October 4 - 7, Silver Spring, MD
CCSP Module I: Concrete 101
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
 
October 11, Webinar
Recruiting & Hiring Top Performing Ready Mix Sales Reps
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
 
November 7-11, Silver Spring, MD
Annual "Short Course"
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152

December 6, Webinar 
Sales Performance Assessments and Reviews... for Ready Mix Sales Managers
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
 
December 13-16, Anaheim, CA
Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
Promotion
The U.S. Green Building Council's Kentucky chapter has named Brett Ruffing, director of technology and education for the Kentucky Ready-Mixed Concrete Association (KRMCA) its Outstanding Volunteer award for 2016. Following is an excerpt from the USGBC announcement: "A LEED Green Associate, Brett has been an active leader since joining the Kentucky Community in 2009. He has served on every committee numerous times, as Membership Chair for years as well as serving on the Kentucky Board for two years. He has raised more than $10,000 in sponsorships from his company, Kentucky Ready Mix Concrete Association (a USGBC member), and from his constituents, for Green Scenes and Lunch & Learns and Green Apple Day of Service. Brett has planned Advocacy Day, and played a major and vital role in vetting legislation, meeting with legislators, and printing handouts that detailed our position on legislation plus our impact in KY. Through his relationships with legislators and municipal leaders, Brett has helped raise the profile of LEED Plaque Ceremonies by inviting these leaders to speak about the impact of green building on the state of Kentucky."

Additionally, Ruffing has served on national concrete and cement industry task forces to further industry participation in developing - and comply with - LEED requirements (such as EPDs, HPDs, etc.), and to educate concrete and cement industry employees about LEED and concrete’s contribution to LEED credits. He has given presentations across the country about the successes of Kentucky's green schools and Green Schools Caucus, and is currently working with a colleague in Washington to spread the message.

"I am of the opinion that all state associations should have a big presence in their state USGBC’s," said Finley Messick, KRMCA executive director. "Brett’s involvement has been huge for us. We are currently fighting a code change for multi-family housing up to three stories. Many of the home builders want to revert from 2012 code back to 2009 code. With Brett’s help, the USGBC-KY has agreed to stand with us against this change. Without Brett’s connection in USGBC, this would have never happened."

For more information, contact Phil Kresge at pkresge@nrmca.org.
Sustainability
NRMCA hosted the 11th annual International Concrete Sustainability Conference (2016 ICSC) last week in suburban Washington, DC. The conference provided learning opportunities on the latest advances, knowledge, research, tools and solutions for sustainable concrete manufacturing, design and construction. More than 300 people from all over the world attended and presented at the conference. For the first time, the 2016 ICSC was co-located with the International Self-Consolidating Concrete Conference (SCC 2016), sponsored by the Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T). The SCC conference included topics ranging from SCC materials and design methodology to production and quality control. Performance measurement, economics and sustainability of SCC, and many case studies involving the use of SCC in iconic structures will also be presented.
 
Click here for more information about the conference or contact Lionel Lemay at LLemay@nrmca.org or 847-918-7101.
Continental Mixers CarbonCure Technologies Inc.
Products & Services
The NRMCA May Internet Spotlight, which will be good through Tuesday, June 7, is the Guide to Preparing RMC Job Descriptions CD-Rom. This CD includes over 500 sample job descriptions submitted by some of the leading concrete firms in the country. Also included on the CD are guidelines for writing job descriptions and a post offer screen manual. The purpose of the post offer screen is to determine if the applicant can safely perform the physical demands of the job or if reasonable accommodations can be given following ADA guidelines. These job descriptions can be easily downloaded and customized for your company's use.
 
Order online today and receive 20% off the regular member single set price of $99, so the Internet Special is $79.20, plus shipping. Please use discount code ISMAY16, to receive your discount.

The second Internet Spotlight for May, also good through June 7, is the driver training DVD Road Call. This 14-minute video lesson demonstrates the proper, safe and legal procedures to follow in the event of a mixer truck being disabled along a roadway.
 
Order online today and receive 20% off the regular member single set price of $70, making the Internet Special $56, plus shipping. Please use discount code ISMAY16, to receive your discount.