The Building Trades Employers' Association Northeast has partnered with the Massachusetts Construction Advancement Program and the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans to host a high-level overview of new and experienced Trustee Training.


The training sessions will be held on Wednesday, October 5th and Thursday, October 6th from 7:30 AM - 3:45 PM at the Omni Boston Hotel at the Seaport. Limited seats are still available.


Please reach out to Jeanne Tempesta TODAY to register at jtempesta@btea.com. 

John W. Egan Co., Inc. featured in Construction in Focus


The renowned construction magazine’s article “More Than Just a Fresh Lick of Paint” highlighted BTEA Northeast member contractor John W. Egan Co, Inc. for their exceptional work, stating the firm “is trusted by industry leaders for everything from exceptional architectural finishes to heavy industrial coatings on an impressive range of products.” 


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BTEA Northeast Members Attend SMACNA Annual Convention


18 BTEA Northeast members attended the 2022 SMACNA Annual Convention in Colorado Springs, CO. With a great mix of keynote speakers, educational seminars and a product showcase, it was a productive week for all who attended.

Congratulations to BTEA Northeast member MacKay Construction on your Engineering News-Record Merit Award for Ballardvale Fire Station


McKay Construction won the prestigious merit award for its work, based on the “ability of the project team to overcome challenges, contribution to the industry and community, safety and construction and design quality.”


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BTEA Northeast’s Women’s Golf Clinic Was a Massive Success


The BTEA Northeast Women in Construction group, in collaboration with NECA Boston, recently hosted a golf clinic at Granite Links. Over 20 women attended the afternoon filled with golf and networking. If you would like to attend the next event, please reach out to Jeanne Tempesta at jtempesta@btea.com.

1 Forbes Street Site to be Auctioned in Chelsea



Plans for a 500+ unit residential project at 1 Forbes Street in Chelsea have been scrapped and the site, which was foreclosed on in September, is to be auctioned on October 7th. Despite prior permitting to allow 590 units, John DePriest, Chelsea’s Director of Permitting and Land Use Planning, announced that the winning bidder would likely have to re-apply for permits.


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$500M Lab Building Breaks Ground at Boston Landing


On September 22nd construction began on a new 350,000 square foot $500 million lab space in Boston Landing. The building will be called Forum and is expected to open in 2024 and the developer, Ivanhoe Cambridge & Lendlease, announced that it is seeking additional spaces to build life science lab spaces.  



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BPDA Proposes Net Zero Now


Last Wednesday, the Boston Planning and Development Agency announced a proposal known as the Zero Net Carbon Building Zoning Initiative to require new buildings larger than 20,000 square feet or containing at least 15 residential units, to be at net zero carbon status upon completion of the project. Part of the BPDA proposal states that if buildings fail to meet net zero they would be allowed to produce renewable energy onsite to offset emissions. The BPDA is taking comments on the proposal through October 28.


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Employee Safety Data and Employer Liability  


As more data capturing technology makes its way onto jobsites, concerns over employee privacy and employer liability for stolen data are rising. Weight sensors, GPS technology, and biometric data are all tools meant to increase job site safety for workers but present an opportunity for personal data to be stolen from the employer. Construction Safety Equipment manufacturers such as Kenzen and Safe Site Check In warn employers to properly vet any and all technology providers they hire to prevent the loss or theft of sensitive employee data.


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Labor Rates Spike for Union & Open Shop Workers


The past year has seen a sharp spike in wage increases for both Union and Open Shop workers alike. In the years following the 2008 economic crisis Union wages had risen steadily at a rate of 0.1-0.2% annually. Between Q2 of 2021 and Q2 of 2022 first year increases rose by 0.8% to an average of 3.6% across all trades and New England reported a 4.3% increase in the second quarter report. After effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, record inflation, and difficulty attracting new workers have led to this year’s significant increase.


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Mayor Wu Nominates Nine Members to Boston Zoning Board of Appeal


Mayor Wu has nominated 9 individuals to the Boston Zoning Board of Appeal, retaining only a few members previously appointed by former Mayor Marty Walsh. The three that will remain are Hansy Better Barraza, Jeanne Pinado, and Kerry Logue who is finishing her current term and will then be an alternate. The full list of nominees is below:

Giovanni Valencia – West Roxbury


Norm Stembridge – Roxbury


Sherry Dong – Dorchester


Jeanne Pinado – Jamaica Plain


Hansy Better Barraza – Roslindale


Rasheem Shepard – Hyde Park


Alan Langham – Dorchester


Alaa Mukahaal – Mission Hill (Alternate)


Shavel’le Oliver – Mattapan (Alternate)


David Aiken – East Boston (Alternate)


Katie Whewell – West End (Alternate)


Thea Massouh – Brighton (Alternate)


Dave Collins – Roslindale (Alternate)


Cambridge Proposal would Limit Life Science Development


Quinton Zondervan and Marc McGovern, two Cambridge city councilors, filed a proposal to limit the areas where future life science labs can be built. Under the proposed changes life science labs could only be built in or near Cambridgeport, Alewife, and Kendall Square, while excluding developments from the rest of the city. Proponents of the proposal claim that it is a preventative measure and that existing labs will be grandfathered in, while opponents fear that the change would put Cambridge’s reputation as the Biotech capital of the world.


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U.S. Senate Passes the SBIR & STTR Reauthorization Act


The U.S. Senate Passed the SBIR & STTR Reauthorization Act which reauthorizes the Small Business Innovation Research and the Small Business Technology Transfer programs to continue supplying small businesses with roughly $2.4 billion in annual funding. The Bill is currently in the house but is expected to be passed quickly, providing much needed support to small businesses throughout the nation.


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DOL Independent Contractor Rule Approved by White House

 

The White House Office of Management and Budget approved a Department of Labor proposal defining independent contractor status under federal law. The proposal, RIN: 1235-AA43, is expected to be released in early October and comes after the DOL rescinded rules regarding independent contractors that were put into place by the Trump Administration. Once the rule is published there will be a 30-day comment period open to the public.


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  • U.S. Consumer Prices rose 8.3% between January and August of this year. 
  • The price of a 40-foot shipping container dropped by 50% over the last three months and fell below $4 thousand for the first time since September 2020
  • Dr. Susan Collins, the new president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston announced her commitment to lowering inflation to 2% and that, “Accomplishing price stability will require slower employment growth and a somewhat higher unemployment rate” during her speech to the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce on September 26th.
  • As part of the Orange Line overhaul, the MBTA replaced 120 fifty-year-old cars with 152 newly built ones. 
  • 64% of Massachusetts lawmakers are running unopposed in November’s election.
  • The Biden Administration announced a commitment to domestic biomanufacturing with a $2 billion pledge and targeted New Hampshire as an area to construct new manufacturing facilities. 
  • The Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce announced their opposition to the 4% surtax on income exceeding $1 million proposed by Question 1. The Chamber classified the surtax as a threat to middle-class families and small businesses throughout the state. 
  • Median Rent in the United States fell to $1,771.00 a month in August, a $10 decrease and the first in nearly a year, while Boston’s median sits at $3,000.00, up 9.7% since August 2021.


ABOUT BTEA NORTHEAST

The Building Trades Employers’ Association Northeast is the leading voice for the union building trades contractor throughout the New England region. The BTEA encompasses seven different area trade associations that employ tradespeople from several different local building trades unions. 


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