Associated Construction Contractors of New Jersey

Construction Recap

September 5, 2013

Ensure Your Presence in ACCNJ's New Magazine

Deadline for Member News & Giving Back Info: September 10, 2013

Deadline for Advertisements:  September 13, 2013

As we get closer to publishing the first edition of New Jersey Construction, we remind members to make your presence known! We offer paid advertising opportunities as well as a special "Member News" section in the publication where you can share, at no cost, news about recent events and accomplishments in your company. Most particularly, we invite you to contribute to our "Giving Back" section so we can recognize those in your organization who generously donate their time and expertise to better their communities. Please refer to Bulletin 12-13 for the complete advertising package and Bulletin 14-13 for Member News and Giving Back information. Both bulletins may be found in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Carpenters' ICRA Program - Last Call for Registration

In Bulletin 15-13, we sent our Active Members information about the Carpenters' Infection Control Risk Assessment (ICRA) Program, which offers training courses on "Best Practices in Healthcare Construction in Occupied Facilities." On September 19, at the Carpenters' Kenilworth Training Center, members can learn more about the training program and ongoing efforts to educate and promote mandatory training and certification to New Jersey hospitals and healthcare facilities. For complete details and the registration form, access the bulletin in the members-only section at accnj.orgPre-registration by September 12 is required for this no-cost program.

Labor Information Online

Bricklayers:  Agreement Available

In Bulletin 17-13, we informed members they could access online the new agreement between ACCNJ and the International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers, Local Union Nos. 2, 4 & 5, effective May 1, 2013, or request a paper copy. For details, please refer to the bulletin found in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Carpenters: Agreement Available

In Bulletin 28-13, we informed members they could access online the new agreement between ACCNJ and the Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters and Eastern Millwrights Regional Council, effective May 1, 2013, or request a paper copy. For details, please refer to the bulletin found in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Laborers: New Wage Rates

Effective September 1, 2013, wage rates have changed for Construction and General Laborers Local Nos. 172 & 472, and Asphalt Laborers Local No. 172. For details, please refer to Bulletin 29-13 in the members-only section at accnj.org.

ACCNJ Provides Certificate of Membership, Logo

In a recent letter to members, we enclosed a Certificate of Membership to use as part of your bid packages and marketing tools or for display in your office. We invite you to contact us if you would like additional original certificates or seek a copy via email. Just email your request to jschiff@accnj.org.

Also, please note the ACCNJ logo is available for members to download from the members-only section of our website, accnj.org. We encourage you to download and review the Logo Usage Guidelines as well, a brief PDF that helps us preserve the integrity of the logo for all members.

State Legislative Activity

Higher Education Bond Act Monies Approved

As we reported in Bulletin 18-13, Governor Christie signed into law S-2884 / A-4202, a bill that appropriates approximately $716 million to the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education and officially begins the initial disbursement of the Bond Act's resources to New Jersey's colleges and universities. Members may access the bulletin in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Governor Signs Into Law ACCNJ-Supported 2% Retainage Bill

Of particular note, given the recent approval of the Higher Education Bond Act monies discussed above, Governor Christie signed into law a critically important ACCNJ initiative that explicitly states "2% retainage" on projects that fall within New Jersey State College Contracts Law. The law was necessary given the industry had seen a burdensome trend toward 10% or higher retainage clauses included in many State College bid specifications. The new law took effect immediately. For more details, refer to Bulletin 23-13 in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Environmental Infrastructure Trust Monies Approved

Governor Christie also signed into law several bills that authorize spending or otherwise impact New Jersey's Environmental Infrastructure Trust, an independent State financing authority that provides low-cost financing for the construction of infrastructure projects that enhance and protect our State's water resources and facilitate economic development. For details, refer to Bulletin 19-13 in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Federal News of Note 

Fighting Reverse Auction Practice

AGC of America redoubled its efforts to combat reverse auction procurement for construction services following the recent launch of a US General Services Administration reverse auction platform that enables any federal agency to conduct a procurement through an online reverse auction. In a letter to the GSA on August 13, AGC of America noted that purchasing construction services is complex and cannot be compared to purchase of an off-the-shelf commodity. For more on AGC's position, long supported by the New Jersey chapters, visit http://www.agc.org/cs/advocacy/legislative_activity/Reverse_Auctions.

FAR Council Issues Final Rule

AGC of America was pleased to report that the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Council, in its final rule requiring federal agencies to adopt uniform past-performance ratings, did not remove the right for contractors to seek review of past-performance evaluations at a level above the contracting officers. The original proposed rule removed that right, and in comments to the rule, AGC repeatedly highlighted the need to retain that administrative appeal right.

OSHA Publishes Silica Dust Rule

As we told you in Bulletin #27-13, OSHA has finally published a proposed rule on silica dust exposure, requesting public comment. The rule includes two standards, one of which is specific to the construction industry. ACCNJ is an active participant in the New Jersey Silica Outreach and Research Alliance, NJ SOAR, partnering with OSHA to prevent worker exposure to silica dust. For more information, refer to the bulletin in the members-only section at accnj.org.

New Hiring Rules Proposed

New US Department of Labor rules would require most federal government contractors to set hiring goals of 7% disabled workers, 8% veterans. Latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the unemployment rate for disabled workers is 14.7%, and 9.9% for veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan (7.3% for veterans overall). AGC of America's CEO Stephen Sandherr called the proposed rules "oppressive" because they "force federal contractors to spend an estimated $6 billion a year to produce reams of new paperwork proving they are doing what the federal government already knows they are doing." The rules would affect contractors with at least 50 employees and $50,000 in government contracts.

AGC of America Resources

2014 AGC Alliant Build America Awards

In Bulletin 20-13, we provided detailed information on the 2014 AGC/Alliant Build America competition, which is open to ACCNJ members for entries until November 1, 2013. The bulletin is available in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Register Now for Technology Webinar

We announced in Bulletin 24-13 an AGC of America-hosted webinar, "A Technology Blueprint for General Contractors," scheduled for September 24, 2013. The bulletin is available in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Industry News of Note

Personnel Changes at NJ Turnpike Authority

Richard J. Raczynski, Chief Engineer at the New Jersey Turnpike Authority, announced his retirement, effective August 31. Rob Fischer has been appointed Acting Chief Engineer. Rich was always accessible to the construction community, keeping us apprised of events important to the industry, and we wish him well in his retirement. We also extend best wishes to Rob as he assumes this interim role.

Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force Report

A 200-page Rebuilding Strategy was released in late August by President Obama's Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force. The release includes a progress report and key recommendations for federal investment in storm-affected areas. For details, members may access Bulletin 26-13 in the members-only section at accnj.org.

In other news...

Amtrak's Northeast Corridor upgrades hinge on overcoming political, funding challenges http://www.progressiverailroading.com/amtrak/article/Amtrak39s-Northeast-Corridor-upgrades-hinge-on-overcoming-political-funding-challenges--37150?source=pr_digital08/14/2013&usedate=08/14/2013&email=bernie@bwcommunications.net&cid=14449#

NJ Transit didn't follow its own storm plan http://www.northjersey.com/news/bergen/NJ_Transit_didnt_follow_its_own_storm_plan.html?page=all

New Jersey to build storm-resilient grid for its transit system http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/26/us-electric-grid-newjersey-idUSBRE97POSS20130826

Read more industry news in Hot Topics 

In August, we posted numerous news items on our website at accnj.org/hot-topics/. Every Friday, members receive an email recapping the Hot Topics posted for the week. We encourage members to check the Hot Topics site often for late-breaking news of interest to the industry.

Support a Member's Benefit Event - Saturday!

ACCNJ member Let It Grow, Inc., a Landscape Site Construction contractor, invites members to its 18th Annual Benefit Concert this Saturday, September 7, 2013, at the firm's headquarters, 52 Ackerson Street, River Edge, NJ.  Local bands will play the music of The Grateful Dead and The Band, and this year's proceeds benefit Retinoblastoma Awareness. Doors open at 3:30 pm, music begins at 4:00 pm. Tickets are $25, children under 12 free. Rain date Sunday, September 8, 2:00 pm. For information, call 201.489.9499 or visit the website at www.letitgrow.com

Upcoming Events

Registration Open for OSHA 30-Hour Course

We encourage members to register early for the ACCNJ-hosted OSHA 30-Hour Construction Safety Course scheduled for the first four Tuesdays in October. Find details and the registration form in Bulletin 13-13 in the members-only section at accnj.org

Registration Open for Pension Program

Members signatory to the Bricklayers, Carpenters, Ironworkers, Laborers or Operating Engineers are invited to attend a special program scheduled for Monday, October 14, 2013, on the state of multi-employer pension plans held by those trades. Details and a registration form may be found in Bulletin 21-13 in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Registration Open for Coffee Talk with the Port Authority

Members are invited to join us on October 25, 2013, for the next event in the Coffee Talk Series. Bill Baroni, Deputy Director of The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, will provide an overview of the infrastructure projects in its capital plan. While there is no charge to attend this program, pre-registration is required. For details, find the Coffee Talk flyer on the Events page at accnj.org, email akopin@accnj.org or call 732.225.2265 for details.

Registration Open for Winter Conference

In Bulletin 02-13, we issued details on the ACCNJ Winter Conference, scheduled for February at the Regent Palms Resort in Turks and Caicos. Members may access the bulletin with registration information in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Registration Open for BIM Units 1 & 2

ACCNJ will host BIM Unit 1, "BIM 101:  An Introduction to Building Information Modeling," at the Association office on Friday, November 1, 2013, followed by BIM Unit 2, "BIM Technology," on Friday, December 6, 2013.  Members may access Bulletin 22-13 with complete information and registration forms in the members-only section at accnj.org.

Check the Mail - Invitations for Gala Dinner Dance

Invitations were sent to all members for our Inaugural Gala Dinner Dance on Friday, November 22, 2013, at Nanina's In the Park, Belleville. We hope to see you there, and encourage you to take advantage of Souvenir Journal advertising and opportunities to support the ACCNJ Political Action Committee through sponsorships. You will find all the information, plus reservation and sponsorship forms, in your invitation. If you have questions, please call the Association office at 732.225.2265 or email jschiff@accnj.org.

Save the Date - Annual Membership Meeting

Our last membership event of the year is scheduled for December 10 at the Robert B. Meyner Reception Center, PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel. Registration forms will be distributed this fall.