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Association & Industry News

The early bird registration deadline for NRMCA’s ConcreteWorks 2021 is Wednesday, August 25. Register by that date and save over $100 off the regular registration fees. Registration fees, except for a-la-carte registrations, include access to NRMCA’s ConcreteWorks, registration materials, attendance at education sessions and social functions. The CONCRETEPAC and RMC Research & Education Foundation fundraiser and some spouse/guest activities require a separate registration form and fee.

NRMCA has contracted a block of rooms at the resort at a discounted rate of $189/night plus applicable taxes and a $30/night resort fee that will cover several in-room amenities. Hotel reservations can be made by calling the Gaylord Palms directly at 877-491-0442 and asking for the NRMCA or National Ready Mixed Concrete Association rate or you can make your hotel reservations online. The hotel reservations cut-off date is Tuesday, September 7, or when the block sells out, whichever occurs first.

Exhibit space is still available for this year’s event. Reserve your space in the expo hall by completing the Exhibitor Application and returning it to NRMCA along with the required payment. Exhibit space is assigned by exhibition management on a first-come, first-served basis. Exhibit space costs and information can be found in the exhibitor prospectus.

For more information, please contact Senior Director of Meetings Jessica Walgenbach at jwalgenbach@nrmca.org or click here to access registration, hotel reservation information, the exhibitor prospectus and more.

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Nominations to fill the seats of eight expiring terms for the RMC Research & Education Foundation’s Board of Trustees are now being accepted. The Board will hold an election to fill expiring terms at its next meeting on Wednesday, November 10. Nominations must be received by Friday, September 17.

To nominate an individual for the Board, please contact Foundation Executive Director Julie Garbini at jgarbini@rmc-foundation.org or 703-706-4850. Please click here to view the Board of Trustees Position Description and visit www.rmc-foundation.org for more information about the work of the Foundation.

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Last week, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) updated its current guidance for how businesses should address COVID-19 in the workplace. The update reflects what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggested in late July for mask usage in areas with substantial and high COVID-19 transmission rates. Both the OSHA and CDC guidance is not mandated, but rather are recommendations. Specifically, OSHA’s guidance update:

  • Recommends that fully-vaccinated workers in areas of substantial or high community transmission wear masks in order to protect unvaccinated workers;
  • Recommends that fully-vaccinated workers who have close contacts with people with coronavirus wear masks for up to 14 days unless they have a negative coronavirus test at least 3-5 days after such contact;
  • Clarifies recommendations to protect unvaccinated workers and other at-risk workers in manufacturing, meat and poultry processing, seafood processing and agricultural processing; and
  • Links to the latest guidance on K-12 schools and CDC statements on public transit.

OSHA also noted in its update that it “continues to emphasize that vaccination is the optimal step to protect workers and encourages employers to engage with workers and their representatives to implement multi-layered approaches to protect unvaccinated or otherwise at-risk workers from the coronavirus.”

Click here to view OSHA’s updated guidance. For more information, contact Kevin Walgenbach at kwalgenbach@nrmca.org.

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Newly-installed National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel Jennifer Abruzzo last week outlined a lengthy set of priority issues the Board plans to address, many of which aim to overturn Trump-era decisions. In laying out these priorities for her staff she stated, “As our country fights a horrific pandemic and returns from an unprecedented economic recession, it is critical that the NLRB vigorously protect the rights of workers to freely associate and act collectively to improve their wages and working conditions. This memo should be seen as a road map for ways in which the Agency will better effectuate its mission and congressional mandate, including protecting the right to engage in concerted activities for mutual aid or protection and encouraging collective bargaining.”

The issues Abruzzo is looking to decide through new cases and potential rulemaking include, in part, employer handbooks, concerted protected activity, confidentiality agreements, union access to workplaces (physically and through e-mail), union dues, worker classification, case-handling procedures and Board authority over religious organizations. NRMCA will be working independently and with industry partners to monitor and advocate for beneficial industry outcomes.

Click here to review General Counsel Abruzzo’s priorities memo. For more information, contact Kevin Walgenbach at kwalgenbach@nrmca.org.

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Engineering

NRMCA Executive Vice President, Engineering, Colin Lobo recently partnered with technical representatives at the American Society of Concrete Contractors (ASCC) to author an article for ACI Concrete International magazine that addresses whether concrete used for floor slabs should be assigned to the durability exposure classes of ACI 318 and thereby comply with those requirements. There are some exposure conditions whereby the requirements for concrete would require a lower w/cm than typically used in practice and recommended by ACI Committee 302 on floor construction. Using concrete with a low w/cm could impact constructability and the ability to obtain the required finish and comply with floor tolerances.

In this article, it is suggested that concrete floor slabs constructed on a capillary break subgrade layer and on a vapor retarder are adequately isolated from exposure to sulfates in soil and suggests that these do not need to be assigned to the exposure class for more severe sulfate resistance. Testing performed on simulated systems and evaluation of preserving the integrity of vapor retarder sheets are used in this article to support the suggestions.

The article, Vapor Barriers Used with Capillary Breaks Reduce the Severity of Sulfate Exposure of Concrete, by James Klinger, Bruce Suprenant and Colin Lobo is published in the August 2021 issue of ACI’s magazine.

For more information, contact Colin Lobo at clobo@nrmca.org.

The NRMCA Concrete Durability Course is scheduled as an online course between September 10-20. The course will use presentation recordings from a previous offering of the course for attendees to access as their schedule permits. There will be quizzes and live sessions for review and Q&A during this period. Course handouts will be provided on the NRMCA online education portal. The exam for this course that provides the NRMCA Concrete Technologist Level 4 Certification will be on September 20. Details on the schedule are tentative at this time.

The course is taught by Michael Thomas, University of New Brunswick; Kevin Folliard, University of Texas at Austin and NRMCA Engineering staff. The course provides a fundamental understanding of the nature of cement and concrete as they relate to durability of concrete. Topics will cover cracking, alkali aggregate reactions, sulfate attack, corrosion of reinforcing steel, freeze-thaw durability and other aspects. A group exercise will be facilitated to familiarize attendees with the ConcreteWorks software used for mass concrete and service life prediction.

The course also discusses the durability provisions in the Building Code - ACI 318-19 and how specifications can be structured to address durability. Comprehensive reference material is provided as course notes which is an excellent resource for concrete producers and associated technical personnel.

Those with the NRMCA Level 3 Certification obtain the NRMCA Concrete Technologist Level 4 Certification when passing the exam offered with the course. It is not essential to have attended the NRMCA Technical Short Course to attend the Durability Course. The course provides required learning units toward the technical track of the NRMCA STEPS certification program. Persons interested in attending this course are encouraged to register as soon as possible.

Registration will be available here. For more information, contact Colin Lobo at clobo@nrmca.org.

Workforce Development

We are back to face-to-face interactive classes – with COVID protocols in place! Take advantage of NRMCA’s once-a-year discount to those who register for the Certified Concrete Sales Professional (CCSP) series of four workshops. Additionally, the class fee is reduced to companies that send three or more people to one sales class. Finally, all four classes will take place in Dallas, a central U.S. location. Each class will be held at the same hotel, conveniently close to Love Field and 20 minutes from Dallas/Ft Worth International Airport.

Rev up your sales staff for 2022! Each class stands alone so it does NOT have to be taken consecutively or collectively. The schedule is as follows:

Click here to register for the 4-class discount. For more information about each class, click on the titles above or contact NRMCA's Meetings Department at meetings@nrmca.org.

The 2021 Mixer Driver Survey shows turnover increased 3% the past year (the full report will be released September 1). As a result, the Workforce Development Committee Practices Task Group wants to remind producers that two checklists were developed with specific considerations for the ready mixed concrete industry. Their purpose is two-fold: to mitigate company risk while reinforcing HR acumen. While neither offer or encompass legal advice, they can be great go-to resources. The checklists are:

To grow the series, the Workforce Development Committee would like to hear what processes or checklists you would like to add. Additionally, if you have an area of expertise to help develop a checklist, please volunteer.

E-mail your thoughts to Eileen Dickson at edickson@nrmca.org.

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Calendar

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

September 10-17 Online Course
Concrete Durability Course
Email: Mason Jean, 703-706-4835

September 15, Free Virtual Conference
2021 Global Concrete Summit: Innovation
Sponsored by NRMCA, Grey Matters, Build With Strength and Pave Ahead
Email: Lionel Lemay, 847-922-7995

September 29 - October 3, Kissimmee, FL
NRMCA’s ConcreteWorks 2021
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 703-706-4852

October 13, Free Virtual Conference
2021 Global Concrete Summit: High Performance
Sponsored by NRMCA, Grey Matters, Build With Strength and Pave Ahead
Email: Lionel Lemay, 847-922-7995

October 18 - 20, Orlando, FL
Ready Mixed Concrete Safety Course
Email: Mason Jean, 703-706-4835

October 19 - 22, Dallas
CCSP Module I (Intro to Concrete Fundamentals)
Email: Mason Jean, 703-706-4835

November 9 - 11, Dallas
Effective RMC Supervisor Course
Email: Mason Jean, 703-706-4835

November 17, ET Free Virtual Conference
2021 Global Concrete Summit: Resilience
Sponsored by NRMCA, Grey Matters, Build With Strength and Pave Ahead
Email: Lionel Lemay, 847-922-7995

November 30 - December 2, Orlando, FL
NRMCA Environmental Certification Course
Email: Mason Jean, 703-706-4835

December 7 - 10, Orlando, FL
Plant Manager Certification Course
Co-located with Florida Concrete & Products Association
Email: Mason Jean, 703-706-4835

December 7 - 9, Dallas
CCSP Module II (General Business Knowledge)
Email: Mason Jean, 703-706-4835

December 15, Free Virtual Conference
2021 Global Concrete Summit: Low-Impact Development/Responsible Sourcing
Sponsored by NRMCA, Grey Matters, Build With Strength and Pave Ahead
Email: Lionel Lemay, 847-922-7995

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