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Association & Industry News

The estimated ready mixed concrete produced in July 2019 is 36.8 million cubic yards, 7.7% higher than that in July 2018. The estimated production in the U.S. for 2019 through July is 208 million cubic yards, 2.4% higher than that during the same period in 2018.

Ready mixed concrete production is estimated from cement shipments reported by the U.S. Geological Survey. More detail is available to NRMCA members here.

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This Build With Strength activity report summarizes activity in state and local legislation for July 2019. Locations of interest are municipalities throughout New Jersey and Massachusetts along with the cities of Philadelphia and Los Angeles.

Click here to access the advocacy report. For more information, contact John Loyer at

Recently, Build With Strength (BWS) joined the American Institute of Architects staff and architects from 46 states, Puerto Rico and the Bahamas in the inaugural 2019 AIA Disaster Assistance Program (DAP) Bootcamp. In service of this mission, the program was designed to build the knowledge and skills of state disaster coordinators and component (local chapter) staff leading their respective AIA State Disaster Assistance Programs. BWS was the co-sponsor of the program that will equip architects with the knowledge and skills to mitigate, prepare for, respond to and recover from a disaster. NRMCA’s Gregg Lewis, Lionel Lemay and Tien Peng were on hand to represent BWS.

"BWS is making a concerted effort to develop stronger ties with architects because of our shared purpose of the critical importance on building resilient communities," said Gregg Lewis, NRMCA executive vice president of promotion strategy and communications. "Lionel, Tien and I along with other BWS/NRMCA staff are committed to forging partnerships with organizations such as the American Institute of Architects."

With the exponential increase in natural disasters, NRMCA develops these partnerships by sharing emerging research with like-minded organizations. It communicates the impacts of building with concrete, the necessity of rigorous building codes and utilizing case studies to convey the changing construction landscape related to resilience.

Build With Strength is a coalition led by NRMCA that promotes resilient concrete construction through communications, project promotion, education and advocacy. BWS can help leverage policies to help place more concrete. For more information contact Tien Peng at or 206-913-8535.

   Euclid Chemical Company       Con-Tech Manufacturing, Inc.    

Starting January 6, 2020, commercial motor vehicle carriers are required to be registered with the new, secure Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse. Once registered, carriers are required to input all of their CDL-holders’ positive drug and alcohol tests, refused tests and return-to-duty testing elements. Carriers are also mandated to query the Clearinghouse for prospective drivers that may have drug and alcohol program violations and annually query for all drivers to check for any positive tests before a driver is allowed to operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) on public roadways.

Furthermore, carriers are required to have content from their drivers before conducting a driver query of the Clearinghouse. Drivers wishing to continue to drive for the carrier will need to register with the Clearinghouse to grant consent and to review their own information. Driver and carrier registration is completed online through FMCSA’s website.

Specifically, the elements for the Clearinghouse all carriers and drivers need to know are:
1. This is NOT a proposal; this program was finalized in December 2016 and becomes effective January 6, 2020.

2. Carriers are required to be registered with the Clearinghouse.

3. Drivers are not required to be registered, but in order for a carrier to fulfill their responsibility they will need to query each employed driver making it imperative for drivers to register should they wish to maintain employment

4. The Clearinghouse will contain only driver positive drug/alcohol tests, refused tests and the steps completed for the return-to-duty process after a positive test.

5. Information gathered in the Clearinghouse will be nationwide, meaning drivers that move jobs frequently will have information in the Clearinghouse accessible to all current and future carriers from January 6, 2020 moving forward.

6. There are two types of queries that can be performed: full and limited. A full query is required for pre-employment and if a positive test is shown in the Clearinghouse. A limited query is an annual query by carriers of all their CDL-holders to determine if a positive test is shown in the Clearinghouse.

7. Carriers can use third-party services to both report violations and query their drivers. However, third-party services must be made as the carrier’s designated service agent when the carrier registers and the third-party must be an authorized service registered through FMCSA.

8. Querying the Clearinghouse does have a cost. While single queries cost $1.25 for limited and full queries, carriers can purchase “bundles” of queries based on the carriers needs and number of drivers.

9. Training for personnel with the carrier and drivers will be key for a smooth registration and for maintaining compliance.

Click here for more information on the Clearinghouse, including all requirements, factsheets, query pricing schedules, frequently asked questions and more. You may also contact Gary Mullings at or Kevin Walgenbach at

NRMCA's free How To Become A Green-Star Auditor Webinar is scheduled for Tuesday, December 3, from 10 to 11 a.m. Eastern time. This is a required Webinar to be an Accredited Green-Star Auditor. This Webinar explains the educational and work experience needed to be an Accredited Green-Star Auditor and the continuing educational requirements to keep the certification. The Accredited Green-Star Auditor certification is valid for three years at which time the auditor must reapply. A few handy templates are covered to assist the company in starting Green-Star. At the conclusion of the Webinar, the attendee will understand the requirements to be an accredited Green-Star Auditor and the expectations that accompany certification.

Click here to register or for more information. You may also contact Gary Mullings at

There are only a few seats left for this year’s Environmental Certification Course to be held in Orlando, FL, November 19-21. Course attendees will be educated on industry-specific environmental issues that affect ready mixed concrete production, including the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, Discharge Permits, Stormwater Management, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, Solids Management, Hazardous Materials, Dust Control, Recycling, Spill Prevention Plans, Air Quality Management, Noise Management, Environmental Auditing and much more.

Those who should attend include plant managers, environmental managers, compliance managers, executives or anyone with fiscal and/or environmental responsibilities that should know the details concerning your company’s responsibilities when it comes to EPA regulations, the Clean Water Act, Discharge Permits, Stormwater Management and numerous other critical environmental matters.

Click here to register or for more information. You may also contact Gary Mullings at

   BASF Construction Chemicals       Charah, Inc    
Government Affairs

In a recent hearing of the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, several Members of Congress expressed the view that mass timber is a sustainable building resource. One member of the Committee, Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), expressed the opinion that it was a suitable and preferable alternative to concrete and steel built buildings. NRMCA and PCA drafted and submitted for the official record a statement identifying the true emissions impact of mass timber.

This is the latest in efforts of various interest groups attempting to promote one building material over another under the guise of sustainability or innovation. NRMCA and PCA will conduct meetings with members of the Select Committee and the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, which has jurisdiction over environmental legislation, on the sustainability of concrete.

For more information, contact Andrew Tyrrell at

On Thursday, October 31, the Senate passed the Fiscal Year 2020 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies (THUD) appropriations bill, thereby funding the Departments of Transportation (DOT) and Housing and Urban Development. The legislation includes a total of $86.6 billion for DOT, a $167 million increase from FY2019, as well as $1 billion for BUILD Grants (formerly TIGER Grants) and full FAST Act funding. You can read a full summary of the bill here.

NRMCA drafted and sent on behalf of the North American Concrete Alliance a letter supporting two specific amendments: the Barrasso Amendment, which prevented the clawing back of $7.6 billion in highway funds and the McSally-Jones Amendment, which stopped an automatic $1.2 billion cut to mass transit programs. NRMCA also joined the Transportation Construction Coalition (TCC) in sending a letter in support of these amendments and the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) in sending a letter specifically addressing the $1.2 billion in cuts to mass transit. You can read the NACA letter here, the TCC letter here, and the APTA letter here.

The rescission of $7.6 billion in unspent highway funds – which takes place automatically on July 1, 2020 – is a priority for NRMCA. The NRMCA Government Affairs team is in regular contact with the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, which is leading the broad effort to find a fix for the rescission. NRMCA joined AASHTO, NSSGA and PCA in asking Congress to prevent these clawbacks (see that letter here).

For more information, contact Andrew Tyrrell at

The NRMCA Financial Performance Improvement (FPI) Group last week hosted a dry run of an upcoming course, titled Think Like an Owner. Held at NRMCA’s new Alexandria, VA, headquarters, this dry run provided course instructor Bob Capasso and the FPI Group to get feedback on the material and prepare for offering the course to NRMCA member companies.

The course was developed in response to the growing industry trends of rising sales volume and declining profitability. The course is intended to provide senior managers and area and plant managers the tools to identify areas that they are losing or not maximizing profitability and what they can do to address those issues. The course is expected to be offered February 11-12, 2020. Registration information and additional details will be released shortly.

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   Xypex Chemical Corp       MAPEI    
News Links

Editor’s Note: With the news clips below, E-NEWS reinstitutes periodic summaries of concrete-related news to appear in this space. Look for more summaries in the coming weeks.

North Carolina – An October 6 article in The News & Observer of Raleigh published an opinion piece titled Stick-built Apartments Are a Rising Risk in the Triangle where the author asks why municipal leaders in the Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill region are “working with developers to cover our cities with dangerous, hastily constructed condos and apartment homes made out of sticks?” Read more.

Texas – The Fox affiliate in Dallas, KETK, broadcast an October 29 story concerning a North Texas builder who is constructing concrete homes capable of withstanding EF-5 winds because of “walls are made of concrete sandwiched between two layers of foam.” The story was aired a week after 11 confirmed tornadoes caused more than $277 million worth of damage the week before. Read more.

California – The Chico State Concrete Industry Management Department recently unveiled its new laboratory that features a student-designed machine that slices a concrete beam in half. An October 9 article by the Chico Enterprise-Record features a brief introduction to a video. Read more.

Toronto – During a seminar on carbon negative concrete, a California-based scientist said “concrete holds the greatest capability to sequester more carbon dioxide than any other avenue available.” The scientist, Brent Constantz, founder and CEO of Blue Planet Ltd., spoke at the 14th annual Green Building Festival held in Toronto in mid-October. The Daily Commercial News covered the event with an October 16 posting. Read more.

   Terex Advance       Ryder Fuel Services    

Last week, NRMCA partnered with the Wyoming Technology Transfer Center and the American Concrete Pavement Association's Colorado/Wyoming chapter to bring ”Key Steps for Building a Successful Concrete Project” to Buffalo and Cheyenne, WY. Jamie Johnson, PE, a pavement engineer for the chapter; Dave Figurski, PE, technical services engineer, LafargeHolcim, and NRMCA Vice President, Local Paving, Don Clem, presented the latest innovations in concrete design and construction of concrete pavements, including an overview of proper construction techniques for concrete flatwork, concrete overlays, NRMCA's Design Assistance Program and other industry resources.

The programs were attended by about 30 professionals from WYDOT, the cities of Casper, Cheyenne and Laramie, several engineering firms, cement and ready mixed concrete companies, and a general contractor. Shown here are Dave Figurski, LafargeHolcim (at left), and Larry Saunders, Mountain Cement Company, demonstrating the impact of variables and admixtures on cement slurry mixes.

For more information, contact Don A. Clem at

The Amazon Fulfillment Center in St. Charles, MO, seen here is a testament to concrete construction with 2.3 million square feet of concrete floor space stacked within four stories of tilt-up wall panels and 1,570,000 square feet of concrete parking lot and paving, reports NRMCA Senior Vice President, Local Paving, Jon Hansen. NRMCA Producer member Breckenridge Material Company supplied contractor Fenix Construction Company a continuous supply of ready mixed concrete.

“The developer was insistent on a structure that would stand the test of time due to sustainability and decided on concrete over any other available building material. Unlike asphalt, concrete yields an extensive life cycle so a concrete parking lot was chosen. Not only were the loading dock areas concrete, all parking lots as well as driveways incorporated concrete. Amazon is a true testament to the beauty and efficiency of such a versatile product,” wrote the general contractor.

For more information about this project, contact Gina Loddeke, marketing manager at the Concrete Council of St. Louis at or Jon Hansen at Photo courtesy of Rhett Dunlap of Breckenridge Materials.

Luke McHugh, P.E., NRMCA senior director, local paving, was recently asked by the City of Philadelphia Division of Aviation, Engineering Department to demonstrate how to identify and repair concrete pavement distresses. Over 20 engineers and field personnel were in attendance to learn about joint and crack sealing, partial depth repair, full depth repair and slab replacement that can be performed within the time constraints allotted by aircraft operations.

For more information, contact Luke McHugh at

   Concrete Pump Supply       Hendrickson Auxiliary Axle Systems    


January 14 – 16, Des Moines, IA
Effective RMC Supervisor Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

January 14 – 16, Nashville, TN
CCSP Module I: Introduction to Concrete Fundamentals—Concrete 101
Sponsored by the Tennessee Concrete Association
Email: Darla Sparkman, 615-360-7393

January 21 – 24, Cincinnati *Sold Out
NRMCA Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

January 28 – 30, Orlando, FL
Dispatcher Training Forum
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

January 28 – 30, Dallas
CCSP Module III: Business for Profit: General Business Knowledge
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

February 25 – 28, Miami
NRMCA Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

March 7 – 9, Las Vegas
NRMCA 2020 Annual Convention
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

March 10 – 14, Las Vegas
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

March 17 – 19, Dallas
CCSP Module IV: Sales Fundamentals for Sales and Non-Sales Staff
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

March 24 – 27, Boston
NRMCA Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

September 27 – 29, Aurora, CO
NRMCA's ConcreteWorks
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

December 15 – 18, Phoenix
NRMCA Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852


*Please note that e-mail and direct links to each event listed below can be accessed from NRMCA's Web site. 

November 11 – 15, Baltimore
Concrete Technologist Training and Certification “Short Course”
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

November 19 – 21, Orlando, FL
Environmental Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

November 20, Little Rock, AR
Improving Concrete Quality Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

December 3, Denver
Insulating Concrete Forms (ICF) Contractor Training Course
Email: Emma Dolan, CRMCA, 303-290-0303

December 3, Webinar
How to Become a Green-Star Auditor
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

December 10, Hagerstown, MD
Pervious Concrete Contractor Certification Program
Email: MRMCA 301-694-4899

December 10 – 13, Orlando, FL *Sold Out
Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

December 17 – 19, Dallas
CCSP Module II: Understanding the Concrete Contractor’s Business
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

   Basys Processing, Inc.       Shumaker Industries