October 2016
Supported By
Recruit 3 & You're FREE
New Orleans Flood Maps
From Jerome Landry, NOLA Safety & Permits: 

As you may have heard, our new Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) became effective Friday September 30, 2016. We have been issuing permits for new construction and substantial improvement using the maps since they were adopted June 1st, 2016. We will no longer accept old benchmark certificates and elevation certificates that show the old FIRM date of 3/1/1984. All benchmarks submitted for new construction and substantial improvement must be on the new City of New Orleans 2016 Benchmark Certificate. All the local surveyors have the form and have been using them. If you have the benchmark on the old form with the FIRM date of 1984, please give your surveyor a call and they will gladly update it for you. 


For more Info on floodplain management for the City of New Orleans please visit:
Please email any questions or concerns to floods@nola.gov.
Fall Golf Tournament
Golf Ball Fall Golf Tournament
Thursday, October 20
@ Audubon Golf Course

Tito's Bloody Mary Bar

Fried Shrimp & Pickles by Buckwalter Insurance Group

Handrolled Cigars

YETI Cooler - Tito's Golf  Bag - & MORE!
HBAGNO PAC Fundraiser
Speed Networking Event
There is still room available at the 
Speed Networking Event

Thursday, October 6 - 4:30-6:30pm
Nordic Kitchens & Baths, 1818 Veterans Memorial Blvd

15 invited Builders will visit the station of each Associate around the room for 5 minutes each before moving on to the next table. Associates may display product samples and bring giveaways for the 15 builders participating.
This is a great opportunity to have some "face time" with builders you may have a hard time contacting, or that you may have never even met. Make sure to come with your best sales pitch and be ready to speed things up!

Participation Limited to 15 Non-Competing Vendors
These vendors topics are already reserved:
 Builder's Risk Insurance
House Wrap
Portable Restrooms
  Home Warranty

Employee Resource
Louisiana Economic Development provides an employer/employee service called Louisiana Job Connection. They have reached out to the HBAGNO to be a resource for our members who are in search of employees to meet the current construction demands as much of the area is rebuilding. Below is a customize link for our association. Use this free resource if you are in need of new employees, or are a job seeker. 

Matching Funds Needed!

New Orleans Education League of the Construction Industry was awarded a grant in the amount of $25,000 from the Home Building Industry Disaster Relief Fund! We are looking for support from HBA members to match a portion of those funds.

100% of your donations will go towards the construction supplies needed most. Our plan is to focus primarily on sheet rock and insulation. We will work with home owners in the affected areas, as well as builders who are volunteering their time to make repairs on flood damaged homes.

If you have any questions, please contact
Philip Thomas @ (504) 837-2700 or philip@home-builders.org.

Click HERE to donate through Paypal, or contact Philip to make a donation in person.

NOEL would like to thank Devon Sweeney of Sweeney Restoration,LLC, for donating their time to do site inspections for the Jefferson Joining Forces program.  

The Jefferson Joining Forces program remediates code violations for elderly, low-income and/or disabled home owners.  These repairs are done at no cost to the home owner, while being fully compensated to the contractor.  For more information on how you can donate your services or products to the Jefferson Joining Forces program, contact Philip Thomas @ (504) 837-2700.

Plentiful Jobs but Weak Growth, Wages and Inflation
Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D. is President of GraphsandLaughs, LLC and can be reached at elliot@graphsandlaughs.net. His daily 70 word economics and policy blog can be seen at www.econ70.com.

While the US economy is creating plenty of jobs, it isn't growing much. In the first half of 2016, gross domestic product (GDP) grew at an anemic annualized rate of just 1%, compared to about 2% since the end of the recession, and 2.5% from 2000 through 2007. Usually, weak economic growth has been associated with weak employment growth. But not now! Employment growth during the first six months of the year totaled slightly over one million jobs, or a healthy average of 175,000 net new jobs/month. If the historical relationship between GDP and employment that existed before the Great Recession still held, 40% fewer jobs would have been created since January. That said, what does slow growth mean for future wages, why is GDP growth so slow, is it likely to persist, and what does this imply about future interest rates? 
The prolonged and robust job growth we have been experiencing for the last several years has brought down the unemployment rate from 10% to just 4.9%, low by historic standards. As a result, workers are finally becoming scarce and labor costs are, at long last, rising, although not as fast as before the recession. This is because wage growth results from two forces: labor scarcity and increases in labor productivity. Having already discussed scarcity, let's focus on productivity growth, or the increase in output per worker per hour. What we see is dismal labor productivity growth. It has actually been declining for the last three quarters in a row, the first time this has ever happened outside of a recession. This goes a long way in explaining why wage growth remains mediocre despite the low unemployment rate.

While labor productivity is expected to improve and return to the 2006 - 2015 annual average rate of 1.25%, that is way below the 2.5% annual growth rate between 1949 and 2005. This weak labor productivity growth is most likely the result of an aging population and years of weak corporate investment in plant and equipment. This continued lack of investment has sharply reduced corporate efficiency gains. As a result, to produce more product to meet virtually any increase in demand requires more hiring.

Importantly, the conditions that have created this weak investment environment will not dissipate soon. While energy prices appear to have bottomed, it is unlikely that they will soon rise. Thus, exploration and production activity in the oil patch is unlikely to increase much. Similarly, mining firms are holding back on investment while commodity prices are weak, and manufacturers that sell their output overseas will continue to face strong headwinds due to the strong US dollar. In addition, agricultural prices are also expected to remain depressed and auto sales have peaked. Collectively, this means investment in plant and equipment is likely to remain weak, all but insuring GDP growth of at best 2% for the foreseeable future.

With labor productivity weak, GDP growth sluggish, and inflation correspondingly low, the Fed has reduced how high it sees the long-term fed-funds rate reaching -- no higher than 3% compared to 4% or more as recently as 2013! As a result, it may well take three or four years for the fed-funds rate to hit just 3%. As for conventional 30-year mortgage rates, they are likely to remain below 4% well into 2018.
Kick-A$$ Cook Off
Congratulations to Morse Homes, Inc. for taking home the awards for both Best Presentation AND 1st Place! 


NOEL is taking monetary donations to help the flood victims. 

100% of your donations will go toward the construction supplies needed most. Our plan is to focus primarily on sheet rock and insulation. We will work with homeowners in the affected areas, as well as builders who are volunteering their time to make repairs on flood damaged homes. 

If you have any questions, please contact Philip Thomas
504.837.2700 or philip@home-builders.org

Click HERE to donate through PayPal, or contact Philip to make a donation in person. 

Class A Executive Office Space Available 
on the Northshore! 
Located at the foot of the twin span in Slidell, Lakeshore Parc offers monthly & long term leasing starting at $500 p/month.

Lease includes office furnishings, hard-wired Internet, utilities, & cleaning services. Also included is access to the pavilion overlooking Lake Pontchartrain, conference rooms, furnished front lobby, reception area, full kitchen, break room & open office area that's great for training.

Visit us online at LakeshoreParc.com. For appointments and information, contact Jaime Matthews at (985) 639-1954 or Jaime@SunriseHomes.net.

62250 West End Blvd. Slidell, LA 70461

Phil Hoffman chairs NAHB Construction, Codes, and Standards Committee

International Code Council Board of Directors Member Donny Phipps, Government Relations Senior Vice President Sara Yerkes and Mike Wich attended the 2016 National Association of Home Builders Midyear Board of Directors Committee Meetings in Miami, Fla. The Code Council delegation provided reports to the Construction, Codes and Standards Committee, chaired by  HBAGNO member Phil Hoffman from La Place, La .
Driverless Cars
Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D. is President of GraphsandLaughs, LLC and can be reached at elliot@graphsandlaughs.net. His daily 70 word economics and policy blog can be seen at www.econ70.com.

At present there are 240 million cars and light trucks in the USA, most of which are parked 23 hours a day or more. This idleness makes owning and driving a car expensive. If cars could just be used more, automobile transportation costs would fall. That is the promise of Uber, Lyft and all the other assorted ride hailing services. But, what about the next step, driverless cars? With no driver to pay, travel becomes even cheaper. What does the promise of cheaper transportation mean for cities, commutes, sprawl, and more generally how we live? I suggest it will encourage sprawl by increasing the distance of our commutes. Here's why:

As goods and services get cheaper we generally consume more of them. For example, long distance phone calls were once prohibitively expensive and we made them rarely. Today, they are free and we make lots of them. Televisions used to be very costly; a house had just one. Now, every room has a TV. Several years ago, gasoline was $4/gallon and owning a Prius was a status symbol. Now, with gasoline at $2.25/gallon, we are buying gas guzzlers by the gross and driving more too. In short, as something gets cheaper, we generally consume more of it.

Returning our attention back to driverless cars, as new technologies and roads are built to specifically accommodate these vehicles, their transformative potential will become apparent. They will not only be safer than existing cars, but will travel faster and get much better gas mileage. And, shared self-driving cars are expected to easily take 50% of existing cars off the road. Suddenly the cost of conveying a passenger is likely to be not much more than double or triple the cost of public transit. Better yet, hailing such a vehicle from the permanent circulating fleet will take little time and no more than a swipe or two on your smart phone. As a bonus, on-street parking and most off-street parking would completely disappear.

In short, we are on the verge of faster, safer, and cheaper travel. Add to this the twin observations that people generally are willing to commute about 30 minutes to get to work, and that (possibly as a result), urban population densities have generally been declining by about 1%/year since about 1890, and you have a strong likelihood that the cost and time savings these new modes of travel promise will result in longer distance commutes, and thus continued sprawl. In short, the easier it is to get from "Here" to "There", the farther away from "There" people are apt to live. 
Moreover, this outcome is highly likely no matter how things turn out. If we enthusiastically embrace ride-sharing technology, something Americans have never done, we will all be whisked speedily to our now ever-distant places of work and sprawl continues. By contrast, if few of us ride-share and we instead use our own self-driving cars, which is probably more likely, it would mean more cars on the road and thus slightly slower speeds than what could be achieved via mass ride-sharing and thus longer commutes. But we would all be watching TV or reading so who cares!
Member Rebate Program

Calling All Entries!
Entry Deadline: Tuesday, November 1
Member Rebate Program
The Member Rebate Program is a free member benefit of your State & Local Home Builders Association.

There are over 40 of the country's leading manufacturer brands participating in the Member Rebate Program.

Visit Member Benefits for more information, or CLICK HERE to view an online brochure with helpful information about the program.
In This Issue:
NOLA Flood Maps
PAC Fundraiser
Louisiana Job Connection
Matching Funds Needed for Rebuilding
Calendar of Events
Online Education Available

Also Supported By:  



Did you know you can renew your membership online? 

Just login from the HBAGNO homepage to renew your membership.

October Calendar of Events
All Events held at HBA office unless otherwise noted 

See details below for 
"Featured Events"

4-5) OSHA 10, 9am-3pm

5) HBAGNO PAC Fundraiser @ Adams & Reese, LLP
See box to the left for details

6) Remodelers Council Meeting @ 12pm

6) Speed Networking Event @ Nordic Kichens & Baths, 1818 Veterans Blvd
See box to left for details

11) Golf Tournament Committee Meeting @ 1pm

12-14) LHBA Board Meetings, Renaissance Hotel, New Orleans

12) Executive Committee Meeting @ 12pm

18) HBA Board of Directors Meeting @ 4pm

20) Golf Tournament @ Audubon Park Golf Course
See box to left for details
Job Postings
Goldin Metals
Harvey, LA 

or Visit:

Apply in person at Harvey facility.
Quick Links & Resources

Community Jobs for Bid:

* Under Compliance, click on Employers' Workers' Compensation Coverage Verification
NAHB Online Courses Logo
2016 Senior Officers of the Board

President, Floyd Simeon
Vice President, Mike LeCorgne
Treasurer, Frank Morse
Secretary, Michael Kraft
Immediate Past President, Roy Olsen

2016 Board of Directors

Steve Albert
John Arms
Alexis Brown
Nick Castjohn
Charlie Fontenelle
David Gaspard
Phil Hoffman
Kevin Katner

Jo Ann Kostik
Peter Lanaux
Bruce Layburn
Harold LeBlanc
Brian Mills
Scott Morse
Helmut Mundt
Randy Noel
Lynda Nugent Smith
Rolf Parelius
Kimberly Rooney
Dorothy Stanich
Zach Tyson
Kirk Williamson
Steve Wobbema
Wes Wyman

HBA Staff Contacts

Jon Luther , Executive Vice President
Philip Thomas, Education Director & NOEL Program Director  philip@home-builders.org
Lauren Galliano , Director of Membership & Industry Relations    lauren@home-builders.org
Rita Bautista, Governmental Affairs Representative    rita@home-builders.org
Shane Gray , Accountant  shane@home-builders.org

Did We Miss Something?
Please contact Lauren at the HBA office with any pertinent industry-related issues and/or professional achievements you'd like to share with your association members.

Feature Articles in upcoming issues of sticks & bricks or HBA's printed publication, the homebuilder quarterly(HQ), are FREE opportunities for HBA members to market themselves to 1,000+ industry professionals.

Click Here to Request Details and Submitter Deadlines