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In preparation for their upcoming 2021 budget to be released prior to March 31, our Provincial government has reached out to all stakeholders and asked one question: What do we need to position Ontario for a strong economic recovery after COVID-19? I believe that the response to this question is actually easier than they believe but will require specific conditions to be met in order to properly Build for Recovery.

The Ontario government has opened up a short window of opportunity to make recommendations for the 2021 Ontario Budget. The Ministry of Finance is looking for submissions focusing on dealing with the economic impact of COVID-19 and ways to encourage economic growth.

You can find more information about the OGCA Pre-Budget Submission in this week’s President’s Report. In our submission, we focus on “Building for Recovery” and recommend that the Minister of Finance use the Budget to launch an aggressive investment in infrastructure to grow our economy.

To help you with your submission, we have prepared a template Budget submission and social media post communicating the importance of infrastructure investment. We ask all OGCA members to support our proposal for our industry to take a lead in our economic recovery. If you have any questions, please contact Erich Schmidt at erich@ogca.ca.

Ontario has extended the declared provincial emergency and all orders currently in force under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act until February 9, 2021. This includes restricting non-essential construction activities.

By clicking the link, you can find a full list of construction activities deemed essential.

Schools in several public health unit regions resumed in-person classes on January 25, 2021. To continue to keep students, staff and communities safe, key changes to school operations are in effect.

As the province-wide shutdown continues to be in effect, the COVID-19 Response Framework has been paused.

On Friday, January 22, we participated in a Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development Youth Advisor Secretariat Session with OGCA members EllisDon, AECON Group and Eastern Construction.

Each OGCA member was asked to appear before the panel to address a specific topic in which they had shown leadership: EllisDon regarding steps to engage and promote the trades to underrepresented communities; AECON due to their focus on women in the trades; and Eastern for their continued commitment to employing and supporting youth.

The goal of the session was to have a fulsome conversation with industry-leading construction employers on matters related to increasing the engagement of youth, including youth from under-resented groups, in the skilled trades. The advisors also focused on addressing the stigma associated with pursuing a career in the skilled trades, pathways to learning more about opportunities in construction and supports for prospective apprentices.

The OGCA is excited to see the results of this productive consultation. The Advisors have also launched a survey (click here) and ask you that anyone interested complete it before the end of January.

For more information regarding the Youth Advisor Secretariat, visit the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development Youth Advisors website. For more information about what the OGCA and its partners are doing to address the skills deficit and break down barriers, visit www.ogca.ca.

When Bell Canada launched their “Let’s Talk” initiative about Canada’s mental health in September 2010, I don’t believe that they could have foreseen the imperative need for this avenue and its impact in our current community as COVID-19 has elevated the need for constant discussions on mental health as well as how we cope with the alienation, depression and overall stresses brought on by this pandemic.

Mental health is linked to construction since it ties directly into our “Fit for Duty” policies and procedures for all contractors. Mental health is another aspect that we need to ensure is understood and openly discussed so that underlying issues do not become overt issues for our contractors. Where this subject was once taboo, it is now openly discussed in companies, regardless of the industry, and supported from the top management through the entire company to ensure that all the workers have access to assistance.

In the spirit of “Bell Let’s Talk Day,” the League of Champions is proud to present “Supporting Employees’ Mental Health During the Pandemic” on February 16 at 2 pm. This session will feature Hon. Michael Tibollo, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, to lead off our discussion. Additionally, Liz Horvath, Manager, Workplace Mental Health, Mental Health Commission of Canada, will be speaking about the impact of stress on mental and physical health and safety and coping strategies to help workers focus and improve their well-being. COVID-19 has put undue pressure on mental health in the workplace. Our goal is to further discuss this issue and provide practical advice, tips, and techniques to support your employees.

Please see the notice and registration in this newsletter.

The OGCA supports the LOC, Bell’s Let’s Talk initiative and all programs that assist our contractors in ensuring that their workers have a platform to adequately deal with underlying or overt mental health issues. If any of our members need assistance with this issue, please contact me directly at giovanni@ogca.ca or at 905.671.3969.

For more information on the Bell Let’s Talk initiative, please go to: https://letstalk.bell.ca/en/

Trisura Guarantee goes A Step Above
Trisura Guarantee Insurance Company
Trisura Guarantee Insurance Company is a Canadian specialty insurance and surety company with a passionate team that committed to fresh thinking and new ideas. In an industry that is beginning to adapt to the digital age, we’re leading the way with innovative processes that perfectly pair with our expertise in the field, delivering the results our clients are looking for seamlessly.
Click here to visit our website and learn more about our surety and specialty insurance solutions
Industry News

OGCA has received the following information from the Ontario Structural Steel Fabrication Association: 

We wish to notify our OSSFA Members and the construction industry on the present material pricing conditions for structural steel. While we have seen a historic rise in prices last year (2020) right up to December, we have now entered a new phase in Q1. Prices continue to climb higher, as we receive price increases from mills almost on a weekly basis and booked material orders are taking longer to produce and to receive. Market analysts have stated that globally, commodity prices in general will continue to rise in 2021.

Please click here to read the full statement.

This Associate Member webinar will feature key information for greener concrete production including accurate weighing, moisture control and temperature control for the optimization of every batch. Register and join the discussion on how these methods improve profitability and how to make greener concrete work for you.

Tecwill specializes in modular and relocatable concrete plants suitable for cold areas. Their world leading technology provides significant savings in energy consumption and production costs and reduces CO2 emissions of plants.

Please click here to register.

With COVID-19 cases on the rise, new strains cropping up and a slower than hoped rollout of vaccines, it is essential to remain vigilant and follow worksite health and safety protocols as well as general public health measures, says the Canadian Construction Association (CCA).

Please click here to read the full statement.

TTC is considering a Line 1 subway shut down currently targeted from Monday, March 15, 2021, to Thursday, March 24, 2021, to perform asbestos abatement work over the northbound track and platform level at St. Patrick Station.

They currently have an RFP - P58PY21034 - Asbestos Abatement – St. Patrick Station Northbound Platform out and would like to reach out to vendors who may be interested in this project.

For more information and details about the project, please visit TTC’s Bonfire Public Portal at the link below:


innovation Corner

COMPASS Pulse is a free 12 question (eight minutes) survey designed to help general contractors identify and mitigate supply chain risk. Questions aim to assess the pandemic's effect on your subcontractor's financial, workforce, capacity, and project risk. You can find their 2020 Review survey by clicking here.

With COMPASS Pulse, analyzing and reviewing thousands of subcontractor submissions is easy and effective. All communications are coordinated by COMPASS and can be limited to subcontractors on new projects, active contracts or largest exposure. Survey responses are used in conjunction with COMPASS Analytical Reports to identify trends, patterns and exposure on an aggregate level and identify high-risk subcontractors to encourage further dialogue.

If you would like more information, visit the COMPASS Pulse website or contact Stephen Brode at sbrode@bespokemetrics.com.

Join the League of Champions on February 16, 2021 at 2 p.m. for the next webinar in our series.

Ways to Support Employees' Mental Health During COVID will provide you with tools you can use to address one our industry’s biggest challenges.

We are pleased to announce that the Honourable Michael Tibollo, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, will be leading off our discussion. Liz Horvath, from the Mental Health Commission of Canada, will be speaking about the impact of stress on mental and physical health and safety, and providing coping strategies to help workers focus and improve their wellbeing.

Click here to Register for this webinar.

This past December proved to be one of the deadliest months in recent memory for the construction industry. Due to the unprecedented fatalities, the construction industry in Ontario was asked to pause and STAND DOWN for safety.
Concrete Flooring Association
K. Winter Sanitation Inc.

Applications are now being accepted for the annual Doug Chalmers Award for Safety, which will be presented at Leadership Day, a virtual event taking place in February/March.

The deadline for applications is February 12, 2021. If you or someone you know deserves this award, please click here to download the application form and submit their name for consideration.

Mark your calendar for March 5, 12 and 19 for the Leadership Conference to be presented at 8:30 a.m. each day in three parts of 90 minutes each.

Unfortunately, we will not be able to meet in-person this year, but through the magic of Zoom, we will present you with the information you need to keep your workers safe.

On the first day, you will hear from leaders in government and the industry, including a presentation from CPO Ron Kelusky. We will celebrate improvements in workplace safety and welcome new members to the League of Champions. We will also award our prestigious Doug Chalmers Safety Award to this year’s winner! Make sure you submit your nomination by February 12.

The second day of the conference will feature a panel discussion on “Leadership During a Crisis.” This panel will feature industry leaders who will discuss the challenges and strategies they found were successful in keeping their employees safe.

The third day will feature a panel discussion on “Building an Effective Strategy to Manage Worker Safety.” The focus will include supporting mental health, managing subcontractor performance and updating your OH&S strategy.

More details and a list of presenters will be released this Thursday. Keep an eye out for your invitation!


Metropolitan Credit Adjusters Ltd
Member News

OGCA's 2021 Membership Directory is now online.

Please click here to access it. 


Associate Partner News and Events

Now, more than ever, as we grapple with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, we need ways to support the wellness of our youth and young adults.

For several years, Sherrard Kuzz LLP has proudly supported Head to Head, a Canada-wide, community based program that connects elite athletes, including Olympians, with youth, to promote resilience and wellness.

Please click here for the invitation.

Petrela, Winter & Associates, a leading bonding and insurance brokerage that focuses exclusively in construction, invites contractors to save the date for their first virtual construction conference happening February 24, 2021. Without leaving your seat, this event offers contractors a day filled with dynamic, prominent construction executives and engaging speakers, all sharing powerful observations and ideas relevant to the contracting businesses today. The agenda can be accessed by clicking here

A limited number of free registrations for this event will be available to OGCA contractor members shortly. Please keep an eye out for further information.

The team at Petrela, Winter & Associates looks forward to ‘seeing’ you there!

Petrela, Winter & Associates is a partner broker of Navacord, a top commercial insurance brokerage in Canada and leader in surety and construction insurance.

As per the direction of the Associate Partner Committee and the OGCA Board of Directors, we are pleased to profile two more of our APP members in this issue of the newsletter.

Alliance Creative Marketing
For all of your marketing needs, you should check out Alliance's website. Everything from apparel to customer gifts, you can rely on Alliance to provide what you need. Click here for their profile page.

Trisura Guarantee Insurance Company
Trisura Guarantee Insurance Company is a Canadian specialty lines insurance and surety company. Through a select network of national and regional brokerage firms, Trisura Guarantee provides innovative solutions and expertise in Contract, Developer and Commercial Surety, Directors’ and Officers’ Liability, Fidelity, Professional Liability including Media, Technology and Cyber Liability, Property, Casualty and Warranty products. Trisura Guarantee is rated A- (Excellent) by A.M. Best Company. Click here to see their profile page.

Stay Ahead of the Curve With Superior Piping.
Ontario Pipe Trades Council
The United Association (UA) has been training qualified piping professionals for over 150 years. With 17 state-of-the-art training centres, we train: Steam/Pipefitters, Gasfitters, Sprinkler fitters, Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Mechanics, Plumbers, Instrumentation Mechanics and Welders. Stay ahead of the curve, and stay on time and on budget with our superior piping skills.
CMiC: Collaboration, Communications & Control. Without Compromise.
No matter what the size of the project, CMiC delivers everything you need to run all of your jobs in one place – effective collaboration, communications, control, direction and project tracking. Improved workflows ensure that field teams are able to easily communicate issues, report RFIs, distribute documents, track activities and collaborate more effectively. 
Ask an expert and determine your solution today!
ProEst Estimating Software
ELM Insurance Brokers Inc.
Legislative & Legal Updates

The latest issue of the Ontario Legislative Reports is now available on the OGCA website. Please click here to access the latest issue.

The Ontario Legislative Report is updated every two weeks and explains the intention and status of legislation and regulations that could impact the construction industry. For issues prior to January 2020, please contact Mary Wademan at OGCA.

Education & Events

On January 15, Small Business Minister Prabmeet Sarkaria announced that applications for the New Ontario Small Business Support Grant are now open. This vital program will provide eligible businesses a one-time grant of much needed support to help get them through these challenging times.

Please click here for full information. Click here for the User Application Guide, and click here for the News Release.

About this event, presented by RESCON

Join leaders of the construction industry as well as the Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development, Monte McNaughton, and Chief Prevention Officer, Ron Kelusky to learn about the new COVID-19 regulations and restrictions and what they mean for the construction industry.

*A Zoom link will be sent to you on January 27, 2021 that will allow you to join the Mitigating the Spread of COVID-19 in Construction webinar.

Please click here to register through Eventbrite.

Often senior staff, managers and supervisors will need to conduct investigations on behalf of the company. The reasons for an investigation could range from very simple to very serious.  One thing they will often have in common is the need to clarify confusing statements. Occasionally it will be necessary to figure out if a worker is telling the truth. It is important to accomplish these goals while being respectful and avoiding accusations.

Please click here to watch a YouTube video, issued by the OSWCA, that, in under five minutes, explains the Excess Soils regulations and how it affects contractors.

Calendar of Events

Registration is now open for the 2021 Canadian Construction Association’s (CCA) annual conference! We are excited to bring you the same incredible content and networking you have come to expect from CCA's leading annual event, proving once again that we as an industry are Virtually Unstoppable!
Register early to take advantage of our EARLY BIRD pricing before it expires January 31, 2021.

General Hillier and Dan Aykroyd confirmed for the CCA virtual conference

We are thrilled to announce that General (Retired) Rick Hillier will provide the kickoff keynote at this year’s conference. As a leading figure in Canada, General Hillier will speak on adaptive leadership in the next normal.
In addition to a program featuring industry leaders from around the world sharing best practices and learnings, we are delighted to host three social events including our night with Dan Aykroyd and Crystal Head Vodka. Check out our program for the latest updates and session details.

G4S Secure Solutions (Canada) Ltd.