NCMA Midyear Meeting Highlights Industry

August 9, 2018
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NCMA Midyear Meeting highlights industry
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While the 100-Year Gala was a time of industry celebration, more than 400 members came together at the Midyear Meeting in Chicago, IL, to look to the future. With committee meetings, networking opportunities and social events, members strategized about the industry’s future in product development, promotion and education. Highlights of the week included the launch of the last 100-Year history video at the Town Hall Meeting, Unit Design Competition, Member Networking Reception and more. Thank you to those companies that have generously donated to the Midyear Meeting with sponsorships and the 100-Year Anniversary Celebration contributors. Stay tuned for the full Midyear Meeting recap next week.
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Home insurance premiums for frame construction higher than masonry
A recent study by Gavop shows that insurance premiums for wood frame houses are $550 higher than those constructed using masonry. The study looked at premiums by the same providers in Aurora, CO for both construction types. The study shows that in nearly all cases homeowners can save a significant amount on insurance for a concrete masonry home. Read more.

100-Year Anniversary Gala Celebration
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More than 350 NCMA members and industry partners gathered in Chicago on Wednesday evening to celebrate the association’s rich 100-year history. The evening gala event included honoring all the companies and individuals who helped shape the concrete masonry and hardscape industry into what it is today. The Second City cast and the American Idol finalist Leslie Hunt & Entourage entertained the guests. Held during the NCMA Midyear Meeting, the week-long celebration included a variety of special sessions commemorating where the industry has been and where it is heading in the future. 
Workforce shortages – The commodity of skills
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Are skilled craft professionals becoming scarce? With the construction industry continuing to expand — 282,000 jobs were added over the past year — and baby boomers retiring, the answer is overwhelmingly yes. By 2030, millennials, those born in the 1980s and 1990s, are predicted to make up 75 percent of the global workforce, which makes sense as the last of the baby boomers are set to turn 65 in 2029. The industry does not have the luxury to be nonchalant about the impending changes facing us with an estimated shortage of 1.5 million workers by 2021. Read more.

Senate completes action on FY 2019 Appropriations Bill
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On Aug. 1, the Senate passed H.R. 6147, a "minibus" appropriations bill that combined four appropriations bills, including Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD). The FY 2019 THUD Appropriations bill approved by the Senate includes $45 billion in funding (consistent with FAST Act levels) from the Highway Trust Fund for federal-aid highway programs, along with an additional $3.3 billion transfer from the general fund. The bill also includes $1 billion for Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) grants and $17.7 billion for the Federal Aviation Administration, with $3.35 billion for Airport Improvement Program (AIP) grants and an additional $750 million in AIP discretionary funds. Read more.

Total US construction starts for 2018 predicted to be down -0.2%
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ConstructConnect, a leading provider of construction information and technology solutions in North America, announced the release of its Fall 2018 Forecast and Quarterly Report. The forecast revealed minor revisions to its total construction starts from what was originally estimated last quarter. Total starts for 2018 over 2017 are now expected to be -0.2%, down slightly from the 0.4% figure previously calculated. Read more.

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Perfect for rustproofing stone veneer and stucco installations, 1/4" self-furred Ultra-Lath Plus® plastic lath is safer, easier to use than metal. It lowers installed costs, meets ASTM C1764, C1780, C1787, C1788 - and passes the multi-story fire test (NFPA 285). Available in sheets, rolls, strips – it’s unaffected by moisture/chemicals.

Ball State University committed to masonry design education
NCMA Foundation
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Tony Costello, FAIA, Irving Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Architecture at Ball State University gives a firsthand account of the benefits to masonry design education of both the Student Design Competition and the Unit Design Competition funded by the NCMA Education and Research Foundation, with local support from the Midwest Masonry Institute. The Student Design Competition project focused on designing a prototype medical clinic in rural Puerto Rico employing a clinic in a can system that would also serve as a pre and post disaster assistance center. The project for the Unit Design Competition included the challenge to incorporate disposed, plastic water bottles into the design as a component of sustainable design. These bottles are ubiquitous in all post natural disaster situations when potable water is of prime concern. Read more about the programs here.

Foundation awards over $230,000 in grants
NCMA Foundation
At the NCMA Midyear Meetings last week, the Foundation awarded $231,942 in new grants, including projects to support BIM initiatives, student design competitions, and a variety of research projects. Additionally, the Foundation awarded both the Paul and Helen Lenchuck Scholarship and the John and Marlene Heslip Scholarship to deserving students. The Paul and Helen Lenchuk Scholarship was granted to Rachel Chandler, attending California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Chandler is scheduled to graduate in June of 2019 with a Master’s degree in Architectural Engineering. The John and Marlene Heslip Scholarship was awarded to Joshua Ring, attending University of Wyoming. Ring is scheduled to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Architectural Engineering in May of 2019 and a Master’s degree in Structural Engineering in May of 2020. Look for more details on individual projects in E-news in the coming weeks.

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Basalite employees send congrats
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Basalite employees across the company’s west coast footprint took a moment of their day to send congratulations to NCMA for its 100-Year of service. Click here to see more snapshots of Basalite posing with NCMA 100-Year Banner. 

What is the difference between STC and OITC?
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With respect to concrete masonry, Sound Transmission Class (STC) is the measure of the ability of a sound barrier to reduce the sound intensity of varying sound frequencies, and is intended to capture typical room-to-room sound frequencies that travel from one side of a barrier to the next. Outdoor-Indoor Transmission Class, similar to STC, is the ability of a barrier to reduce the intensity of sound frequencies but is intended to capture typical outside sound frequencies. For more details refer to TEKS 13-1C and 13-4A.

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Time to plan training SRW Contractors this fall and winter months 
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The Level I and Advanced SRW Installer courses are one-day programs that teach installers the essential concepts related to the construction and performance of SRWs, providing the knowledge they need to install quality walls that ensure their long-term success. So far this year, over 500 have taken the SRW Courses in the US and Canada. It is the perfect time to consider organizing other courses for the training season in 2018. If you are interested in organizing course in your area please contact Gabriela Mariscal at NCMA or visit to see the details to host courses.

Last Chance to submit to the NCMA Masonry and SRW sales survey  
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The deadline to submit to the 2018 NCMA Masonry and SRW Sales survey is 8/15 and producers and SRW licensors are encouraged to submit. The survey is intended to track the growth and directional movement of masonry and segmental retaining wall block production based on the association’s work and initiatives. The survey can be found at and will provide extremely valuable information about the industry. If you want to more information or if your company wants to participate, please contact Gabriela Mariscal.
Register Today for the YPG Workshop October 23-24 in Fort Worth, TX
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The NCMA Fall YPG workshop will be held in Fort Worth, Texas and will include a day and half of networking with your peers. Learn more about NCMA, the industry, and where it is headed in the future. The workshop will include a plant tour, a panel discussion with NCMA YPG’s about their involvement with NCMA, and guest speaker Ken McFarland on transformational leadership. Don’t miss this opportunity to meet some new young professionals in the concrete masonry industry, learn more about opportunities in this industry, and engage in professional development. Register Here.
Register today for 2018 Basic Block and Hardscape Products Sales Course

Registration is now open for NCMA’s highly rated Basic Block and Hardscape Products Sales Course. The class will be held November 29-30, 2018 at the NCMA Headquarters in Herndon, VA. The course is an excellent foundation for sales professionals who have been in the concrete masonry and hardscapes industry for less than three years. The curriculum will focus on relationship building as well as technical information and marketing strategies vital to advancing students’ knowledge of the concrete masonry and hardscape markets.

Click here for course flyer. Click here for the course syllabus. Tuition is $575 for NCMA members/$975 for non-member participants. Discounts available for three or more registrants from the same company (Discount for NCMA members only). For more information please contact Clare Ramminger, Click here to register.

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