NRMCA e-news

National Ready Mixed Concrete Association

Schwing America, Inc.
The Euclid Chemical Company
What's a FRIB and why is it good news for the ready mixed concrete industry? The Facility for Rare Isotope Beams is under construction on the campus of Michigan State University in East Lansing - it requires concrete walls that will measure 14 feet thick. And while the FRIB won't operate until at least 2020, the concrete poured on one day recently was the largest placement of the entire project - about 350 mixer trucks' worth.

Source: The State News for March 10. Read more.
Iowa State University researchers are hoping their work will help prevent the dreaded delayed or cancelled flights at airports across the country. A team of 19 researchers is developing three methods to prevent snow and ice from collecting on the paved surfaces on airport runways and taxi ways. The three technologies vary from a spray coating to internally-warmed concrete. The first method uses electrically conductive concrete, where volts of electricity are sent through the concrete to warm it from the inside. A second similar method also creates internal warmth, but instead builds the concrete around copper pipes, which then send heated liquid through them to create heat. The third method uses a superhydrophobic coat, which can be directly sprayed onto the concrete. When snow and ice hit the pavement, it can easily roll off the surface instead of collecting on top.

Source: A March 7 article by the Ames (IA) Tribune.
The Mineral Products Association (MPA) has urged the United Kingdom government to end the loopholes that enable volumetric concrete mixers to sidestep HGV regulations. The Department for Transport (DfT) has issued two consultations proposing that volumetrics are brought within the scope of Operator (O) Licences and are required to undertake regular roadworthiness testing. The DfT also proposes to end the distortion whereby volumetrics currently operate to weight limits significantly higher than HGVs (a four axle HGV, such as a ready mixed concrete truck mixer, has a maximum gross weight of 32 t, whereas volumetrics often operate at 40 to 45 t).  MPA supports these proposals and has urged the government to implement them as soon as possible.

Source: A March 6 posting on Read more.
A huge fire that destroyed a 408-unit apartment complex in Edgewater, New Jersey, last month is causing public officials to re-examine building codes governing multi-family construction and the safety of combustible wood-frame construction.

Fire protection provisions in new construction reduce the use of non-combustible materials like concrete in favor of sprinkler systems alone. However, reliance on a single system results in less protection than the addition of passive fire resistant materials like concrete, masonry and steel. PCA and other concrete interests have long advocated for balanced design for safety and property protection.

Following this fire, New Jersey officials are re-thinking the appropriateness of light-frame construction for multi-family dwellings.

Read more at Think Harder.Blog. Source: Portland Cement Association Executive Report e-newsletter for March 2.
NRMCA Vice President, National Resources, Amy Miller was recently asked to participate in a Producer member’s internal meeting with key personnel and sales force. Miller discussed resources available through NRMCA membership that are focused on increasing yardage.

"Our members will often ask the resource team to speak at their internal meetings in regard to opportunities to increase yardage through current NRMCA offerings," Miller said. "We are constantly adding new tools to our arsenal of products and always sharing new ways to be more successful in the marketplace. These opportunities to speak to our members, 'the boots on the ground,' are invaluable. We are able to open up communication channels and ultimately we will get follow-up calls from those star performers looking to make a difference in their marketplace."

If you’d like a resource director to a part of your company’s meeting, please contact one of them here.
In another example of good communication and Full Loop Promotion, NRMCA Senior Director, National Resources, Doug O’Neill reports on how Michigan Concrete Association Director of Engineering Kerry Sutton was once again not only there to provided support, but did so before her industry colleagues knew it was needed. O’Neill was contacted by a local contractor who was working on a parking lot conversion and was asked to reach out to the design team to offer industry resources. A call to the design firm initiated a discussion of the project, but also opened up the opportunity to present at one of the firm's monthly "lunch-n-learns." Topic suggestions were submitted; at the same time both the contractor and Kerry Sutton were copied into the communication.

"Kerry replied immediately that she was planning a presentation at this same firm in a few days and would look up the particular contact to provide further assistance," O’Neill said. "How’s that for proactive support!"

Sutton gave her presentation on concrete mixes and specifications along with jointing best practices to the team at this design firm and has now set up a second opportunity for the industry to return and talk about specific design recommendations for concrete parking lots. The contractor has also been invited in to talk about issues from a contractor’s perspective.

For more information, contact Doug O'Neill at
NRMCA Paving Engineer Amanda Hult and Senior Director, National Resources, Phil Kresge will host a free, one-hour Design Assistance Program (DAP) Webinar on Tuesday, March 31 at 11:30 a.m. Eastern time. The Webinar will detail the free services provided to the industry through the Design Assistance Programs. NRMCA staff will discuss in detail the information provided in the deliverables as well as how to use this information as a part of the promotional effort for parking lots and streets and local roads.

This Webinar is ideal for those involved in the promotion of concrete pavements or looking for assistance in gaining market share in concrete parking lots and streets and local roads. Designers and specifiers looking for information on how to submit for pavement design assistance are also invited to attend.

Please contact Amanda Hult at for more information or click here to register.
ZF Industries, LLC
United States portland cement consumption grew 9.3 percent in the third quarter of 2014 against the same period in 2013. Growth among user groups was widespread, with 15 of the 18 segments tracked recording gains in excess of 4 percent. Several segments highly concentrated in the residential sector have experienced the largest growth, including brick & block (22 percent), interlocking pavers (16 percent), concrete roof tile (15 percent) and building materials dealers (15 percent). PCA’s Survey of Portland Cement by User Group provides end-user cement tonnage for 18 individual segments. Historical data tables and graphs detail segment performance.

Source: Portland Cement Association Executive Report e-newsletter for March 2.
The Concrete Science Platform (CSP) of the MIT Concrete Sustainability Hub recently released a white paper that summarizes the first phase of research results on the structure of calcium-silicate-hydrate (C‑S‑H), the key binding component in cement paste. Researchers in the CSP have created models of C‑S‑H at the atomic-scale that shed new light on its performance in several areas. These studies aimed to discover ways to make a more resilient concrete that lasts longer and reduces the material’s carbon footprint. The CSP concentrated on three areas:  dissolution, precipitation and hardened paste. Each area produced a new model that fills a gap which previously eluded scientists. The models are flexible and can be used to answer questions at nano- to micro-scales as well as at a macro level. For example, the models provide input that might be used by industry to expedite the development, testing, and quality control of cement and concrete materials.

Click here to view a PDF of the full report. Source: Portland Cement Association Executive Report e-newsletter for March 2. The MIT CSHub was established in 2009 with joint funding from the RMC Research & Education Foundation and the Portland Cement Association.
The Concrete Joint Sustainability Initiative (CJSI) has appointed Julie Buffenbarger chairman of CJSI. The coalition also elected James Toscas and Kevin Mlutkowski as vice chairs focusing on advocacy and operations, respectively. CJSI is a coalition of industry institutes and associations representing individuals and companies that design, fabricate, construct or maintain concrete structures.

As chair of CJSI, Buffenbarger will leverage her knowledge of concrete to increase educational opportunities and build partnerships highlighting the sustainable, durable, and resilient benefits of concrete design and construction. Buffenbarger is a construction specialist with Lafarge, a fellow of the American Concrete Institute (ACI) and LEED AP BD+C accredited. She also serves as chair of the ACI Sustainability of Concrete Technical Committee.

"Concrete is the foundation of resilience," said Buffenbarger. "Concrete provides countless solutions to building green, energy-efficient, durable, and secure buildings and infrastructure in our communities. Through the Concrete Joint Sustainability Initiative, we work to increase awareness, outreach and education so that the role and charge of concrete in resilient and sustainable development is understood globally."

As vice chair of advocacy, Toscas will advocate influence on public policy, laws and budgets to educate government officials and the public about the role of concrete in sustainable and resilient construction. Toscas is the president and CEO of the Portland Cement Association. Mlutkowski is the director of sustainability and marketing with the American Concrete Institute and LEED AP BD+C accredited. As the vice chair of operations for CJSI, he will oversee day-to-day operations to support the administrative, strategic and educational efforts of the Initiative.

For more information about CJSI, visit
The Regional Concrete Technology Training and Certification program (Short Course) was attended by 60 industry personnel in February. The course was co-sponsored by the Washington Concrete and Aggregates Association. Attendees are commended for their participation in the intense course on concrete technology. The exam results have been finalized with the following number of certifications awarded:

• NRMCA Field Testing Technician Grade II – 26 (38 of 52 passed the exam, but some lacked the pre-requisite ACI Grade I certification)
• NRMCA Concrete Technologist Level 2 – 40
• NRMCA Concrete Technologist Level 3 – 22

Neal Bratton with Irving Materials, Inc., Evansville, IN, is congratulated for obtaining the highest scores in the Level 2 and Level 3 exams. The next Short Course will be course offered in Silver Spring, MD, in November. Dates are being finalized.

NRMCA has scheduled the Concrete Durability Course (and Concrete Technologist Level 4 certification) in Nashville, June 2-4. Click here to register for the Durability Course or contact Karen Bean at
NRMCA’s Commitment to Environmental Excellence Awards competition offers producers national recognition for outstanding contributions to protecting the environment and maintaining sound management practice in their operations. The program salutes companies that have not only met, but surpassed governmental compliance measures and demonstrated a commitment to environmental excellence through plant and staff investment. Any NRMCA member company producing ready mixed concrete from a fixed plant location in the U.S., its territories or Canada is eligible to enter. Awards will be determined upon individual plant merits; companies may choose to enter plants from any or all of the five production volume categories.

All entries and photos must be received via e-mail to by Friday, July 31. Click here for staff contact, more information and the entry form.
NRMCA's Fleet Benchmarking Survey survey is filled out by industry fleet managers and/or financial managers early each year, based on data gathered from the previous calendar year’s performance. This year’s form includes new question on mixer drum composition, idle time and types of fuel being used. The survey is used to establish industry benchmarking norms and procedures. Information gathered from the annual Fleet Benchmarking Survey is published each fall in a full report in NRMCA's quarterly magazine Concrete InFocus magazine. A shorter Executive Summary of the survey is also made available to all.

The deadline for submitting completed entries via e-mail to is Wednesday, April 1. Click here for staff contact, more information and the survey entry form.
NRMCA's Safety Contest & Benchmarking Survey has for years been a safety performance and incentive/award program aimed to foster safe practices at ready mixed concrete plants across the nation. The survey is a per-plant contest open to all facilities operated by NRMCA member companies in good standing in 2014. Companies with more than one division are encouraged to distribute entry blanks to individuals responsible for keeping safety records at each plant location.

Entries must be received at NRMCA via e-mail no later than Wednesday, April 15, to Karen Bean at Click here for more information, staff contact and the survey entry form.
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 March 2 - 6, 2015, 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 Kerri Leininger at
NRMCA encourages you to join our industry allies for the Transportation Construction Coalition’s (TCC) 2015 Legislative Fly-In on April 14-15 in Washington, DC, and make the case to "Fix the Highway Trust Fund". Federal transportation programs are facing a crisis this year. With MAP-21 set to expire May 31 and the Department of Transportation estimating that the Highway Trust Fund will run out of money this spring, there has never been a greater need for Congress to act. Highway Trust Fund revenue remains insufficient to support current funding levels. New Representatives and Senators are unfamiliar with how these programs operate and the benefits they bring not only to their states and districts, but also the incredible contribution they make to the national economy.

This is the year to come to DC and deliver the message: "Fix the Highway Trust Fund!" constituent visits are a key component to any successful advocacy strategy on Capitol Hill. Your congressional delegation needs to hear from you about the importance of continued investment in transportation infrastructure to the nation’s economy — creating jobs while building the future. As in the past, a legislative briefing is scheduled to update you on the latest congressional developments and educational briefing packets will be prepared for you to deliver to your congressional delegation.

The transportation construction industry cannot afford to sit back and wait for Washington to act. Now is the time to demand action. Congress needs to understand that failure to address the Highway Trust Fund crisis and ensure sustainable funding undermines the construction industry sector — materials producers, contractors, equipment manufacturers, labor — builders of the America’s surface transportation network essential to economic growth and prosperity. Join hundreds of other industry leaders in delivering our message to Capitol Hill.

This year’s meeting will be held at the Hyatt Regency Washington at 400 New Jersey Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20001. To make your hotel reservation, please contact the hotel by calling 1-800-421-1442 or 202-737-1234. Ask for the TCC Fly-In rate of $315 per night.

Please click here to register for the TCC Fly-in. For more information, please contact Kerri Leininger at or 240-485-1159.
Earlier this month, the Senate passed a joint resolution (53-46) under the Congressional Review Act (CRA) offered by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Mike Enzi (R-WY) to stop the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) from implementing the "ambush election" rule. The senators introduced the resolution under the CRA last month, which is the first step in stopping the NLRB’s from implementing the rule without congressional authorization. House Education & Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-MN) along with House Health, Employment, Labor and Pensions Subcommittee Chairman Phil Poe (R-TN) have introduced a similar resolution in the House. The House will begin debate on the measure once it returns from recess next week. Once the resolution is brought to the floor for a vote, it will require a simple majority for passage before sending it to the president.

The "ambush election" rule, finalized by the NLRB in December 2014, becomes effective on April 14, 2015 and implements sweeping changes to union elections. It allows a labor union to hold an election in as few as 11 days – the current election is held in an average of 38 days -- after the Board receives an election petition, prevents workers from receiving balanced information from both sides of the bargaining table and requires employers to disclose their employees’ personal contact information. NRMCA, along with members of the Coalition of Democratic Workforce, sent a letter to members of Congress supporting the Congressional Review Act in order to stop the NLRB from implementing this rule.

For more information, contact NRMCA’s Kerri Leininger at
The minutes of NRMCA's Educational Activities Committee (EAC) March 1 meeting at NRMCA’s Annual Convention in Orlando are now available on EAC's Web site. The next EAC meeting will be held on September 20 during ConcreteWorks in San Antonio.

EAC is always looking for new members. The hot project is pulling together a task group that will also include members from the HR Task Group. Its goal is to fully vet the industry’s hiring and retention issues, including surveying the industry to gather mixer driver retention and turnover statistics as well as developing a national mixer driver recruitment program.

To volunteer or for more information or questions, contact NRMCA's EAC liaison Eileen Dickson at
Due to the increased demand, the NRMCA March Internet Spotlight, good through Tuesday, April 8, is the ASTM Standards for Concrete Technician Certification Guide. This publication includes 12 ASTM practices and test methods related to testing fresh and  hardened concrete, including those required for ACI grade 1 field-testing and strength testing technician certification.

Purchase of this guide is for NRMCA members only. Order online today and receive 15% off the already low NRMCA member price and ASTM prices. Regular member price is $42, Internet Special $38.70, plus shipping. Use Discount Code: ISMAR15.
*Please note that e-mail and direct links to each event listed below can be accessed from NRMCA's Web site.

March 13, Free Webinar
Winning Initial Streets & Roads Projects in Counties & Municipalities
Email: Jacques Jenkins, 240-485-1165
March 16-18, West Palm Beach, FL
Safety Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
March 18, Free Webinar
STEPS - A Long Term Career Tool for the RMC Industry
Email: Shawnita Dickens, 888-84-NRMCA, x1154
March 23, Free Webinar
Streets & Roads Elected-Official Advocacy
Email: Jacques Jenkins, 240-485-1165
March 24-27, Salt Lake City *Sold Out
Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
March 25, Webinar
Sales Management 101...
Email: Shawnita Dickens, 888-84-NRMCA, x1154
March 31-April 2, Silver Spring, MD
CCSP Module IV: Professional Sales Skills Workshop - 24 hours
Email: Shawnita Dickens, 888-84-NRMCA, x1154
April 6, Free Webinar
Roller-Compacted Concrete for Streets & Roads
Email: Jacques Jenkins, 240-485-1165
April 6-8, Nashville, TN (Presented by Tennessee Concrete Association)
CCSP Module IV: Professional Sales Skills
Email: Shawnita Dickens, 888-84-NRMCA, x1154
April 7, Webinar
Introduction to Concrete Pavement Analyst Program
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
April 7, Webinar (Part I) (Part II is April 14)
Designing and Specifying Pervious Concrete
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
April 21, Webinar
Roller Compacted Concrete: Another Choice for Pavement
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
April, 28, Orlando, FL
Handling Concrete Specifications
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
April 28, Columbus, OH (Presented by Ohio Concrete)
Pervious Concrete Contractor Certification
Email: Shawnita Dickens, 888-84-NRMCA, x1154
May 11-13, Miami
International Concrete Sustainability Conference
Email: Lionel Lemay, 847-918-7101
May 13, Webinar
Personal Leadership and Coaching
Email: Shawnita Dickens, 888-84-NRMCA, x1154
June 2-4, Nashville, TN
Concrete Durability Course
Email: Karen Bean, 240-485-1168
July 6, Free Webinar
Streets & Roads Promotion & Advocacy Overview
Email: Jacques Jenkins, 240-485-1165
July 13, Free Webinar
Streets & Roads Team Building & Situation Analysis
Email: Jacques Jenkins, 240-485-1165
July 20, Free Webinar
Streets & Roads Promotion for DOTs, Counties & Municipalities
Email: Jacques Jenkins, 240-485-1165
September 9, Webinar
Recruiting & Hiring Top Performing Ready Mix Sales Reps
Email: Shawnita Dickens, 888-84-NRMCA, x1154
October 13-16, Silver Spring, MD
CCSP Module I: Concrete 101
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
November 2-6, Silver Spring, MD
Annual Concrete Technologist Training and Certification Course "Short Course"
Email: Karen Bean, 240-485-1168
November 10-12, Silver Spring, MD
Effective RMC Supervisor Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
November 18, Webinar
Sales Performance Assessments and Reviews
Email: Shawnita Dickens, 888-84-NRMCA, x1154
December 1-3, Orlando, FL
Environmental Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
December 1-3, Silver Spring, MD
CCSP Module II: Customer Business Knowledge
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
December 8-11, Orlando, FL
Plant Manager Certification Course
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
February 23-25, Silver Spring, MD
CCSP Module III: General Business Knowledge
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152

March 15-17, Silver Spring, MD
CCSP Module IV: Professional Sales Skills
Email: Jessica Walgenbach, 888-84-NRMCA, x1152
Fritz-Pak Corporation
MPAQ Automation
Putzmeister America, Inc.
Xypex Chemical Corp
McNeilus Truck & Manufacturing, Inc.
Lehigh Hanson