Arizona Builders' Alliance Newsletter

Association News                                                                                                                                                                                  January 2014
In This Issue
ABA Hires Lobbying Firm
Get to know your elected officials
Apprenticeship Updates
Explorer Post 811
ABA's Educational Webinars
Member Achievements
Congratulations to the SEP/LDF Graduates
AGC's News
Grow Your Business with ABC
ABA's Toy Drive
Volunteer Day 2013
Cornerstone Nominations
President's Installation Dinner & Auction
Lloyd Scholarships
The Month in Photos


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ABA Offices:

1825 W. Adams
Phoenix, AZ 85007

1661 N. Swan, 
Ste. 144
Tucson, AZ 85712

ABA's Staff
Working for you...


Mark Minter
Executive Director


Tom Dunn
Southern Arizona Director


Erica Lange
Assistant Executive Director


Debbie Carlson
So. AZ Office Manager


Gary Townsley
Director of Apprenticeship


Jenn Swanson
Director of Management Education
Carol McMullen
Dana Jones
Apprenticeship Coordinator


Nita Ornelas
Office Administrator


Mary Navarrette
Chapter Accountant



Happy New Year ABA Members! 

As we venture into 2014, I want to thank you for making the ABA the best commercial construction trade
Erica Lange 
ABA Assistant Executive Director
association in the nation.  Because of your support, loyalty, and commitment to the Association, we were able to tackle a lot this past year.  
Our goal as an Association is to help your business grow and thrive and to help the construction industry as a whole.  In the past few months, you may have noticed changes in the ABA.  If you missed Mark Minter's December webinar presentation, please take a moment to review this pdf of "How the ABA Can Help Your Company in 2014."   We will be making the webinar available to you at your convenience on our new website, once it's completed.  
As you see, we have a lot of programs coming up in 2014 - (view calendar), including a Technology Seminar, a program called "Networking for the Nervous," and several webinar offerings, in addition to our regular programs.  
Mark your calendars for February 7.  The President's Installation Dinner and Auction will be held that evening from 6 - 9pm.  Registration will be available online soon.  In particular, your assistance is needed on the Auction Committee.  Please contact me if you have an interest in participating in this committee, which meets in January and then again on the day of the event.  

There are a LOT of photos from the month of December at the bottom of the e-newsletter.  Make sure to browse through these and if you're a Facebook member and see yourself in a photo, please tag it to increase the ABA's visibility. And make sure you LIKE our page.  

The ABA wishes you a new year filled with peace, joy, and meaning.  And lots of building! 

Erica Lange
Assistant Executive Director 


ABA Prepares for Legislative Session: Hires State's Premiere Lobbying Firm
by Mark Minter, Executive Director

In December the ABA Board of Directors' ratified the hiring of Triadvocates to represent us in the upcoming legislativesession.  Triadvocates is a lobbying firm that specializes in representing Arizona business and industry including firms such as Intel, Microsoft, Vanguard Health and Verizon Wireless. Recently, the Phoenix Business Journal recognized Triadvocates as the No. 1 lobbying firm in Arizona.


The hiring of Triadvocates will give ABA a full-time presence at the Arizona State Legislature.  A year-round effort of contact with state legislators will assure that the construction industry's voice is heard on a variety of topics including tax policy, procurement, labor and regulatory issues.  It will also help us have earlier knowledge of pending legislative proposals and the chance to confer and affect legislation in a more organized fashion.

Panel Updates Members on TPT Changes


by Mark Minter, Executive Director


A panel of tax, accounting and regulatory experts recently updated ABA members on the pending changes to prime contracting and TPT.  Craig McPike of Snell & Wilmer, Adam Carey from BeachFleischman and Christie Comanita from the Department of Revenue briefed nearly 50 industry representatives on the pending changes.  The issues discussed included broad changes such as the future taxing of internet sales, the use of a reporting portal and the consolidated auditing by DOR on behalf of cities.  Also discussed was the separation of "service work" from prime contracting.  Service work is the repair, replacement and remodeling of existing facilities.  Material incorporated into service work would be taxed at the point-of-sale rather than incorporated into the larger project and taxed under the prime contracting model.  Questions and comments from the attendees indicated a high level of confusion and frustration regarding companies who do both prime contracting projects and service work. 


The law has a delayed effective date of January 1st, 2015.  There are no plans to amend the statute in 2014.  However, the Department of Revenue and members of the legislature seem to be recognizing that as the law goes into effect further clarification will be needed.  The ABA will offer additional TPT seminars in both Southern Arizona and the Valley in mid-2014. 

To see more photos of the TPT Seminar, click here. 

If you have a specific legislative topic you'd like to hear about, please contact Mark Minter or call at 602.274.8222 ext. 31.

Tis the get to know your elected officials

by Tom Dunn, Director of Southern Arizona

Tom Dunn

2014 is an election year, which allows us the opportunity to get to know our elected officials better.  It also provides us the chance to inform them about business and commercial construction issues and concerns.  These topics range from OSHA, to taxation, PACE funding, regulation, government spending, and much, much more.  ABA has been very effective throughout the years and we want to become even better.  To get better, we need our advocacy to include strong membership participation (this means you!).  Participation can vary depending on the circumstances and the timing of issues.  


For this upcoming season, let's get more involved.  Let's get to know our legislators, senators, and candidates better.  We need to become their experts in commercial construction.  There are many ways to do this.  If you have an interesting job site in a specific district, give our elected officials a tour.  If you haven't personally visited your representative's office, let's go meet with them together.  The ABA legislative committee is a standing committee that meets in Phoenix when the legislature is in session, attending this meeting is a great start.  Contact Mark Minter or Tom Dunn if you'd like to be involved on the legislative committee. 

Gary Townsley ABA Apprenticeship Director
New Apprenticeship Semester to Begin in January
by Gary Townsley, Apprenticeship Director


Spring Orientation for our Electrical Program is on January 6 and 7 from 4:30-7pm at GWCC in  the south building room 1330.  Visit to register for orientation.   I encourage you to speak with your employees about starting the program so they can begin working towards earning their Journey Worker Certifications and gaining knowledge and skill in the electrical industry.

Electrical classes start the week of January 13.  The last semester finished with 260 apprentices in the program and we are looking forward to the spring semester starting.
Please mark your calendars and plan on attending these outstanding activities.  Equipment operator and mechanic apprentices' first class of 2014 is scheduled for Friday, January 24. 


Please mark your calendars and plan on attending the following events:
  • April 4 - Annual Golf Tournament will be at the Legacy 
  • April 15 - SkillsUSA Championships/ABA Electrical Craft Championships at the Phoenix Convention Center.

For more information, visit or contact Gary Townsley, Apprenticeship Director. 


Explorer Post 811


The Explorer Post 811 is garnering attention from our ABC and AGC representatives which may want to replicate our efforts and best practices.     The upcoming tour will be held on January 25 at Sun Mechanical in Tucson. 
Eric Buchholz and Todd Scholer will lead the tour of their operations.  
This program is working to reach the next generation of workers to inform them of potential career opportunities in commercial construction.  Upcoming tours in the spring may include YOUR COMPANY!  



If you have an interesting facility or jobsite that would be conducive to exploring, please contact Tom Kittle or Tom Dunn.  


Introducing the ABA's Educational Webinars!

As a result of the member survey and focus groups, conducted in the summer of 2013, we discovered that 80% of our members wanted the ABA to offer educational webinars.  Mark Minter hosted the first webinar on December 19, which included information about strategic changes to the ABA in 2014, as well as how your company can get the  most benefit for your membership.  This webinar will be available on our website sometime early next year.  In addition, two additional webinars are scheduled for the 1st quarter, including:



When Time is Money - Proving and Collecting Delay Damages In Construction  January 16 (9-10am):
Presented by P. Douglas Folk, Clark Hill PLC


Navigating Lien Notices February 19 (9-10am):
Presented by 

Gregory P. Gillis, 

Nussbaum Gillis & Dinner, P.C. 


(Registration Available Soon)


Congratulations Adolfson & Peterson on being named Best Place to Work!
Bryan Dunn,
A & P's Southwest Regional Leader


Congratulations to ABA member, Adolfson & Peterson, on being named one of the three Best Small Business Places to Work in the Phoenix Business Journal! Read below about how a company can earn this prestigious honor, as well as what other ABA member companies made this list! 


The Phoenix Business Journal works with a national research firm to survey, audit and rank companies after they are nominated.  Employees of those companies are asked to complete an online survey that measures team effectiveness, trust in senior leaders, feeling valued, manager effectiveness, compensation, benefits and more. Each nominee must reach a minimum percentage of employee participation to be eligible as a finalist.  Quantum Workplace then compiles the data, computes "engagement scores" from it, and uses those scores to rank the finalists in each of five size categories.
Congratulations to the following ABA members who also made the Phoenix Business Journal's Best Places to Work list:
  • Suntec Concrete- Ranked #5 on Large/Extra-Large List
  • DPR Construction - Ranked #6 on Medium List
  • Jennings, Strouss & Salmon PLC - Ranked #9 on Medium List
  • McCarthy Building Companies - Ranked #16 on Medium List
  • Lovitt & Touche Inc. - Ranked #19 on Medium List
  • Kitchell - Ranked #28 on Medium List
Also, congratulations to our new lobbying partner, Triadvocates LLC, for making the #3 spot on the Best Places to Work Micro List. 
If your company has an accomplishment that is appropriate for the ABA's e-newsletter, please contact Erica Lange for consideration. 


Congratulations to the SEP and LDF 2013 Graduates! 
Jennifer Swanson ABA Management Education Director

A sincere congratulations to the SEP and LDF 2013 graduates! Both programs were attended by dedicated, professional and quality leaders!


If you are a company owner, executive or senior leader and are are interested in the Senior Executive Program for fall of 2014, please email Jenn Swanson


See photo of the SEP 2013 graduates.

See photos of the LDF 2013 graduates.

See photos from the 2013 LDF/SEP graduation lunch.  

The latest news for your business 
AGC News, the single source for news and updates relevant to the construction industry, was recently unveiled at AGC's coverage of legislation, environmental regulations, association education resources, construction economic data, and more, is now available in a single spot. 



Bookmark and check often for the latest updates.

Grow Your Business with ABC

When your company joined the Arizona Builders' Alliance, you had a choice to join the National ABC.  If you chose this, you can take advantage of the many member benefits the ABC offers. 


The ABC offers a program called the Accredited Quality Contractor Program, which was launched in 1993.  It is a program which publicly recognizes and honors those construction firms which have documented their commitment in five key areas of corporate responsibility:

  • Quality
  • Safety (STEP Gold, Platinum or Diamond Level Required)
  • Employee Benefits
  • Training 
  • Community Relations

There are many benefits to being recognized as an Accredited Quality Contractor.  To learn more about the program, go to this link.  To find out if you're an ABC member, please contact Nita Ornelas.  

The ABA delivers smiles to over 400 Valley children


This year the ABA, with the help of over 100 member companies and members, collected toys for Sunshine Acres Community and Sunshine Group Homes Organizations.  These organizations provide homes and care for needy children who have been displaced, abused, neglected or orphaned.  As an Association, we managed to collect enough toys to give the 300+ children of Sunshine Group Homes a Merry Christmas and the 100+ orphans of Sunshine Acres four toys/child, cookies, drinks, a visit from Santa & Mrs. Claus, as well as lots of holiday spirit.  


If you in ANY way participated in the toy drive, the ABA wishes to extend our sincere gratitude!  Watching the happiness brought to these children was priceless.  A special thank you to the Community Service Board, who made all the giving possible.  If you'd like to participate on the Community Service Board, please contact Erica Lange.  The community service board helps organize, plan and coordinate the Cellphones for Soldiers Drive, the Backpack Drive, the Toy Drive, and helps select the Community Service Project in which LDF students will participate annually.  


If you've got a community service project that you'd like considered for the 2014 LDF class, please submit this application to Erica Lange prior to January 14.  

Southern Arizona Volunteer Day 2013: Another Success! 


These efforts personify the character of the ABA membership and our industry.  Our membership eagerly helps those in need and in turn, changes lives!  ABA members love to build their community. This year they built more than tangible improvements to Miracle Square, they helped build value and self-respect for those recipients at the property. Miracle Square has relentlessly focused on helping the most vulnerable in our society for nearly 20 years.  This year's Volunteer Day gave ABA members the opportunity to reap the rewards of bringing the forgotten back into the fold. We're thankful for the chance to help Miracle Square provide more miracles for our community!


Thank you to all the ABA members, friends and families that helped throughout the entire year, putting others first in these challenging times. ABA volunteers were there the morning of Christmas Eve, overseeing the model suite's final City of Tucson inspection that allowed the resident to move back into her home before Christmas Day -  which ABA volunteers assisted in as well.  Great job!


Unfortunately, the weather didn't cooperate very well this December.  Due to rain and cooler temperatures, the roof coating could not be applied.  We need 8-10 people to assist in applying the roof coating in January. Contact Tom Dunn or Debbie Carlson if you can assist.  


See more photos from Volunteer Day here.  

Cornerstone Building Foundation Nominations Extended to January 10!

Nominate the best in our industry for the 20th Annual Cornerstone Awards.


We are once again asking for members of the AIA, ABA, NAWIC, ACEC, CSI, SDA and SAAEMA, the leading construction trade and professional organizations in Southern Arizona, to nominate their favorite industry partners for the prestigious Cornerstone Awards celebrating industry workmanship, skill responsibility, and integrity in the building development industry. 




ABA's President's Installation Dinner & Auction 

Lorraine Bergman Caliente Construction Outgoing ABA President


The Arizona Builders' Alliance cordially invites you to honor outgoing President Lorraine Bergman, Caliente Construction and Incoming President Rob Caylor, Caylor Construction at the annual President's installation dinner & auction.  The evening includes reception, dinner and auction to benefit ABA education programs.  


Friday, February 7

6:00 -9:00pm

Phoenix Airport Marriott

1101 N. 44th St., Phoenix, AZ 85008


You can participate in the President's Installation in one or all of the followings ways: 


  • Register for yourself or for a table of 5 or 10 by submitting this flyer. (online registration will be available after the new year)
  • Donate an item to the Auction.  Proceeds will benefit the ABA's education programs.  Simply fill out this form to commit to a donation. 
  • Join the "President's Club" and see your company's logo in lights.  Your contributions will defray the cost of the President's Installation Dinner.  See details here.  
    Rob Caylor 
    Caylor Construction 
    Incoming  ABA President
  • Volunteer on the Auction Committee.  Your help would be greatly appreciated on this committee, which meets 2-3 times in January and helps the day of the event.  Contact Erica Lange to join the committee. 

Lloyd Scholarships / University of Arizona College of Architecture Planning and Landscape Architecture (CAPLA) Scholarships 


We've moved the date of the UA CAPLA/Lloyd dinner to February 2014, allowing the students more time to create their portfolios.  The CAPLA selection meeting will be held in mid-February with the dinner on Tuesday, February 25 at the CAPLA building.  


The Lloyd scholar interviews will also be held in mid-February.  The Lloyd scholar is awarded to an engineering student that is pursuing a career in construction and best exemplifies the qualities of Bill Lloyd, Sr.  


If interested in participating, please contact Tom Dunn or Debbie Carlson.

The Month in Photos!

To see photos from this past month's events, programs or educational programs, click on the appropriate links below.  If you find yourself in any of these photos and are a Facebook user, please tag yourself, so the ABA's Business Fan Page can continue to grow.  And don't forget to LIKE us!  


12-20 ABA presentation of gifts to Sunshine Acres 

12-19 wrapping of gifts for Sunshine Acres

ABA's Toy Drive for Sunshine Group Homes

12-18 Southern Arizona Legislative Reception 

12-11 LEAN Unit 4 Class

Class of 2013 Senior Executive Program Graduates

Class of 2013 Leadership Development Forum Graduates

12-12 LDF/SEP 2013 Graduation Luncheon 

12-7 Volunteer Day - Southern Arizona

12-4 Transaction Privilege Tax Seminar

12-3 Merry McMullen Mixer