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February 2017
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Outside Sales - Sandy Hienz
We are excited to welcome Sandy Hienz to the HBA team this month! Sandy will be handling outside sales for the HBA, helping to make sure all HBA members have the opportunity to market to their full potential within the HBA. 

Sandy is bringing a wealth of knowledge from her experience with companies such as Cumulus Media, Cox Media, The Weather Channel, and HBO, which will surely enhance the marketing program. 

Be sure to say hi to Sandy at the next event or reach out to her today! 504.252.3192 or
Home Builders Institute
L to R: Roy Olsen, Scott Morse, Mike LeCorgne, John Courson (HBI CEO), Randy Strauss (HBI Chairman 2017), Jon Luther, Floyd Simeon

We are very proud that our own CEO, Jon Luther, serves on the national board of trustees of the Home Builders Institute(HBI). HBI's providing amazing construction trades educational and career opportunities to at-risk youth, returning military veterans, and nonviolent offenders. Building Careers-Changing Lives.

Parade of Homes : June 3-4 & 10-11, 2017

Now is the time to sign up for the Parade! Whether you're a builder or an advertiser, take advantage of one of HBA's biggest media opportunities!

New Orleans Education League of the Construction Industry

Thanks to everyone who joined us for our Owner Occupied Rehabilitation info session. We hope everyone is able to bid and win as many jobs as possible. If you'd like more information on the Owner Occupied Rehabilitation Program, or Jefferson Joining Forces, please contact Philip Thomas.

The theme for this month's secret word is Mardi Gras. The secret word for February 2017 is Doubloon. Call Lauren at the HBA office at (504) 837-2700 and tell her this word. The first person to call with the correct word will win a $20 gift card to Martin Wine Cellar. 

Congratulations to Marilyn Cox of Home Bank for winning last month. If you've already won, we ask that you please give others a chance. Thanks for reading!  

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Thanks to Devon Sweeney, with Sweeney Restorations, and John Heald, with One Man and a Tool Box, for volunteering their time in January to help elderly and/or disabled home owners make it through the repair process. For more information on how you can get involved with Jefferson Joining Forces, contact Philip Thomas.

2017 Economic Forecast: Like 2016 but Slightly Better
Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D. is President of GraphsandLaughs, LLC and can be reached at His daily 70 word economics and policy blog can be seen at

Entering 2017, the domestic economic landscape is solid, and while there is an increased likelihood of volatility with President Trump in the White House, the risks to the forecast are slightly to the upside.  This is because the proposed combination of personal and corporate tax cuts, increases in infrastructure and defense spending, reduced regulatory burdens and the likely repatriation of hundreds of billions in overseas corporate cash are all expected to boost economic activity and inflation in 2017. 

However, there are also definite economic headwinds.  It is highly likely that Congress will reduce the size of any tax cuts and spending increases sought by President Trump, blunting their impact.  In addition, legislation takes time to pass and, after passage, there will be lengthy lags before the money begins to impact the economy.  Also, the already rising dollar will hurt manufacturing activity by raising the cost of exports.  Lastly, any attempt to slap tariffs on imports is fraught with the risk of precipitating a trade war, which has obvious negative growth implications.

With all this uncertainty in mind, I expect full-year 2017 GDP to come in at 2.3%, slightly higher than the 1.9% growth experienced last year and the 2% average rate of growth since the end of the Great Recession.  Headline inflation looks to pick up from roughly 1.5% to near 2% in 2017, while core inflation (which excludes food and energy) will edge up, but only slightly.  Because of the slow rise in inflation, the Federal Reserve will have the luxury of time to raise the federal funds rate from where they are now, at 0.625% to, at most, 1.375% by year end, with a rate increase coming roughly every three months and starting no earlier than June. 

Turning our attention to the labor market, I expect net new monthly job growth to average 160,000/month, which, while down, from 188,000/month in 2016, is excellent given that we are late in the business cycle and there are relatively few potential workers still on the sidelines.  Thus, the unemployment rate will probably fall from 4.6% today to 4.3% or possibly 4.2% by year end.  As the labor market tightens, nominal wage growth should increase further in 2017 with average annual wage increases rising from 2.4% to as much as 3%: a healthy rise.

Because of better GDP growth and falling unemployment, 10-year Treasuries will end 2017 at 2.70%, and the rate on 30-year mortgages will be 4.6% as the yield curve rises and steepens due to faster rising long-term rates.  But, continued easing of credit conditions and rising consumer spending due to continued good employment and wage growth will keep the economy and housing market on track. 

Housing starts should increase by about 7.5%, to 1.25 million.  Single-family starts will likely total 850,000, up from 760,000, while multifamily starts should hit 400,000, up from 390,000.  New and existing home sales should collectively rise by about 3% and end the year at 6.15 million, with mortgage purchase volume advancing by $100 billion and refinance activity falling by about $400 billion due to the rise in mortgage rates.  Housing inventories will, regrettably, remain unchanged, and combined with limited new home building, home prices will rise by 5%.  Lastly, I put the chances of a recession in 2017 at a low 15% to 20%.
From the 2017 HBAGNO President, Michael LeCorgne
Michael LeCorgne, CAPS, CGA, CGP, CSP 
I am delighted to serve as your President in the upcoming year. This association means a great deal to me and my business, and I plan to continue to invest an enormous amount of time and energy to see it thrive in the new year. 

We plan to diversify our monthly membership meetings so that every other month (starting January 19th) we will meet for a nothing but networking happy hour - we're calling it Sip & Socialize. The other months will have our traditional luncheons, providing an opportunity to fit within all members' schedules. 

In addition to networking events, I am especially excited that the 501(c)(3), NOEL, has been thriving this past year and will soon be expanding into more parishes. They have had so much success with the Jefferson Parish Office of Community Development that neighboring municipalities have taken notice and have recognized the opportunity for economic development. 

Many of us board members will start out the year by visiting the International Builders Show in Orlando. This is always a great time, and we undoubtedly will come back with ideas to implement for our local chapter. Our own New Orleans Home & Garden Show in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome is gearing up to have another great year of putting local suppliers and builders in touch with the home-buying public.

Remember to GET INVOLVED! You only get out of your association what you put into it, and we need the support of every member to see this association thrive in 2017. 

Mike LeCorgne, CAPS, CGA, CGP, CSP
M3P Homes, LLC
2017 Remodelers Council
Rolf Parelius, CAPS, CGR, CGP, CPD,  Viking Construction Services, Inc.
As we look forward to 2017, it is my goal to ensure that the Remodelers Council serves as a valuable asset to your businesses. For this reason, I plan to restructure the council offerings in the coming year.

Instead of having monthly or bi-monthly lunches at the HBA office, the council leadership (myself along with Vice-Chair Roy Olsen) will be striving to bring in dynamic and knowledgeable speakers for 4 Quarterly Luncheons. These luncheons will focus on topics to help your business. and sponsors will still have the opportunity to have a presence with table top sponsorships. They will be free for council members, and guests are welcome for the price of lunch.

Additionally, we will be hosting quarterly Remodelers Roundtables at the HBA office for council members only. These Roundtables will provide a safe, open forum for members to discuss issues faced in the field. It is my hope that these discussions will help provide practical solutions from our peers. 

It is also my goal to grow our council, as the numbers have steadily declined in the past several years. All members are encouraged to bring guests to the luncheons. If a council member successfully recruits 2 new RC members in 2017, that member will receive their next year's council membership for FREE. That's right, r ecruit 2 new council members and your membership if FREE!

I look forwrad to serving as your chair in the coming year, and encourage each of you to reach out with additional suggestions on how to improve our council.
NAHB Student Chapter at Delgado Community College

HBAGNO is proud to support our local student chapter at Delgado Community College. Pictured above is the Student Chapter Faculty Advisor, Professor P. Victor Mirzai, HBAGNO Board of DIrectors member, Jo Ann Kostik, and HBAGNO President, Mike LeCorgne.
In This Issue:
Home Builders Institute
Parade of Homes
2017: Like 2016 but Slightly Better
From Last Month
Calendar of Events
Remodelers Luncheon
Professional Women in Building
General Membership Meeting

Also Supported By:  



Terrebonne Insurance Agency, Inc.


Compass Capital Management




Buckwalter Insurance

Group, LLC


The Law Office of 

Kyle Sclafani


Office Depot


HomeBuilders Self 

Insurers Fund




Lumber Products, Inc.


Builders Risk Insurance


Klumb Forest Products


February Calendar 
of Events
All Events held at HBA office unless otherwise noted 
See details below for 
"Featured Events"

2) Remodelers Council Luncheon @ Fidelity Bank, 1811 Metairie Ave., Metairie

8) Professional Women in Building Luncheon @Ralph's on the Park, 900 City Park Ave., NOLA

16) General Membership Meeting @ Andrea's Restaurant, 3100 19th Street, Metairie

20) Home & Garden Show Board Meeting @ 4pm

21) HBA Board of Directors Meeting @ 4pm
February 2
12:00 - 1:00pm
Remodelers Council Luncheon


Location: Fidelity Bank, 1811 Metairie Ave., Metairie

FREE for Remodelers Council members
$10 for non-RC members

February 8
11:15 am - 1:00 pm
Professional Women in Building Luncheon

Guest Speaker:
Gayle Benson

Location: Ralph's on the Park, 900 City Park Ave., NOLA

February 16
11:30 am - 1:00 pm
General Membership Meeting

Location: Andrea's Restaurant. 3100 19th Street, Metairie

Job Postings
List your open jobs here!
No charge for HBA members
Quick Links & Resources

Community Jobs for Bid:

* Under Compliance, click on Employers' Workers' Compensation Coverage Verification

Did you know you can renew your membership online? 

Just login from the HBAGNO homepage to renew your membership.

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2017 Senior Officers of the Board

President, Mike LeCorgne  
Vice President, Frank Morse 
Treasurer, Michael Kraft 
Secretary, Rolf Parelius 
Immediate Past President, Floyd Simeon

2017 Board of Directors

Steve Albert 
John Arms 
Charlie Fontenelle 
David Gaspard
John Heald 
Phil Hoffman  
Kevin Katner 
Larry Kornman
Jo Ann Kostik 
Peter Lanaux
 Ben Laws 
Bruce Layburn 
Harold LeBlanc
Brian Mills
Scott Morse 
Helmut Mundt 
Randy Noel
Lynda Nugent Smith
Roy  Olse n
Wagner Rocha 
Kimberly Rooney
Dorothy Stanich
Devon Sweeney 
Zach Tyson 
Kirk Williamson  
Steve Wobbema 
Wes Wyman
HBA Staff Contacts

Jon Luther , Executive Vice President
Philip Thomas, Education Director & NOEL Program Director
Lauren Galliano , Director of Membership & Industry Relations
Rita Bautista, Governmental Affairs Representative
Shane Gray , Accountant

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.

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