2nd annual ICE
Collective Bargaining Conference
Click here for online registration form
Click here for PDF of registration form
Click here to reserve hotel room
Thurs. Oct. 13 - Sat. Oct. 15
at the Grand Hyatt Washington, DC,
ICE will continue the lively collective bargaining discussion
that it began
at last autumm's inaugural conference.
This year we will:
- Revisit and continue the conversation on BAC agreements begun at last year's conference.
- Add Laborers' agreements to the discussion.
- Hear updates from last year's presenters and add the insights of new experts to the conversation.
- Hear a custom presentation on an analysis by the Construction Labor Research Council of masonry market share and union/non-union compensation in selected US cities.
- Attempt to top last year's Thursday evening Mt. Vernon tour and dinner with a visit to Historic Alexandria, VA
- Award the first Eugene George Award for service to the union masonry industry by a contractor with a Friday evening dinner and entertainment.
- Learn from experts and share with other similarly situated bargainers from across the country.
- Have an in-depth conversation about the state of collective bargaining in the masonry industry and what needs to be done in collective bargaining to make contractors more competitive.
- Develop best practices and influence ICE policy on collective bargaining.
Nominations Due for
Eugene George "Dedication" Award
One of the core missions of ICE is to encourage and foster service to the unionized masonry industry by its contractors. ICE's leaders believe that we have the responsibility to give back to the industry that has given us so much.
No one did this better than Eugene George!
Gene's signature is on the founding documents of every organization that exists to improve the union masonry industry, including ICE, the International Masonry Institute (IMI), the International Health Fund (IHF) and the International Pension Fund (IPF). He was chairman of their boards for most of his tenure on them.
Gene rarely missed a meeting and has logged more hours in service of the masonry industry than any other employer, by far. His impact on the industry continues as so many of us who learned from him and considered him mentor attempt to build upon his work and always "raise the bar."
ICE will be awarding its first Eugene George "Dedication" Award on Friday, October 14 in Washington DC, t
o honor Gene and celebrate the contributions of other employers whose service to the industry is deserving of recognition.
The nomination deadline is Sat. Oct. 10, but nominations will be accepted through Mon., Oct. 12. Nominees must be employers,
but nominations will be accepted from any of our industry partners.
Don't miss the opportunity to get the most dedicated contractor from your area the recognition he or she deserves. Click HERE to nominate them.
Please complete t
he 2016 Collective Bargaining Survey. It is online
he survey remains open until Fri. Sept. 30. The results will be included in the updated
ICE Annual Collective Bargaining Report that will be presented at the ICE Collective Bargaining Conference this Oct. 13-15.
Chairman Kline Releases Draft Legislation to Modernize Multiemployer Pensions and provide a new retirement option that protects workers, employers, retirees, and taxpayers
On September 9, 2016, Rep. John Kline (R-MN), chairman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, unveiled a discussion draft of proposed legislation to modernize the nation's multiemployer pension system.
As part of the Committee's ongoing efforts to strengthen retirement security, the proposed legislation follows years of bipartisan work led by a coalition of labor and business leaders, including ICE, and would provide workers a new option to save for retirement by authorizing an innovative multiemployer plan structure known as "composite plans."
Chairman Kline stated, "This proposal will provide more retirement choices for workers, more flexibility for employers, and greater protection for taxpayers. It reflects the input of business and labor leaders, as well as retiree advocates who have long recognized the need to strengthen retirement security. I encourage other concerned individuals to share their views and ideas."
Passage of composite plan legislation would complete the adoption of the full set of recommendations included in the report "Solutions, Not Bailouts" that was produced by the National Coordinating Committee for Multi-Employer Plans' (NCCMP) Retirement Security Review Commission (RSRC), which ICE was a member of. Many of the recommendations were enacted in 2014, when President Obama signed into law the bipartisan Multiemployer Pension Reform Act (MPRA). However, Congress did not adopt reforms at that time to modernize multiemployer pensions through the creation of a new composite plan design.
ICE fully supports the decision by Chairman Kline to take the next step in the reform process and ICE will continue to work on Capitol Hill to urge Republicans and Democrats to make passage of Chairman Kline's legislation an immediate and top priority.
To read the discussion draft, click
For a section-by-section outline of the discussion draft, click
To read a summary of the discussion draft, click
To read answers to basic questions, click
Quality Construction Alliance (QCA)
National Issues Conference In Review
The 2016 Quality Construction Alliance (QCA) National Legislative Issues Conference was held May 10-12 in Washington, DC and drew a record crowd of close to 200 contractor and employer association representatives.
Conference goers split their time between attending panel presentations and visiting Capitol Hill to lobby for the interests of the union construction and maintenance industry.
Affirmative Action, Fair Pay & Sick Leave
The event kicked off on Tuesday with several expert presentations covering Affirmative Action Plan Requirements for Registered Apprenticeship Programs; Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order 139673; and Paid Sick Leave Accrual on Direct Federal Construction Projects Executive Order 13706.
Lou Malone of O'Donoghue and O'Donoghue provided insight as to why the U.S. Department of Labor is updating its rulemaking on Apprentices
hip Equal Employment Opportunity Regulations. Joint Apprenticeship Training Committees (JATCs) will be required to do a number of things under the proposed rule, such as analyze their existing apprenticeship pools and compare them to the available pool within their respective communities to ensure that recruitment extends to all persons without regard to race, sex, ethnicity or disability. DOL's recommendations include utilizing individuals from underrepresented groups to help recruit, mentor, and conduct exit interviews to ensure compliance is being met. Biddle Consulting Group's Director of EEO/AA John Piatt also provided extensive comments on "Understanding Utilization Analyses of the Proposed Affirmative Action Obligations of Apprenticeship Programs."
Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) and Center for American Progress Policy Director Karla Walter provided an overview of Executi
ve Order 13673 on Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces. The EO's stated objective is to "promote economy and efficiency in procurement by contracting with responsible sources who comply with labor laws." Under the Executive Order, before contracting officers may award contracts worth more than $500,000, prospective contractors must disclose violations of 14 labor laws and "equivalent state laws" within the preceding three-year period. These disclosures will then guide decisions on the contractor's ability to ultimately be eligible for the work.
A&A Industrial Piping, Inc.'s General Manager Bill Albanese, Sr. compared the new disclosure requirement to the pre-qualifications many contractors already have to complete before bidding for federal work. Under the existing system, contracting officers are overburdened, as are labor compliance officers. If implemented, this new EO will require more bureaucrats to ensure compliance, but union contractors are less inconvenienced by these disclosure requirements than our competition.
Multiemployer Pension Reform
On Wednesday the QCA Program moved to the Newseum with the first panel presentation dedicated to multiemployer pension reform. Former Congressman George Miller, who served as Chairman of the House Education and Workforce Committee from 2007 to 2011, moderated.
National Coordinating Committee for Multiemployer Plans (NCCMP) Executive Director Randy DeFrehn provided an update on the U.S. Department of Treasury's rejection of the Teamsters Central States Pension Plan's proposal to cut retirement benefits to help stave off insolvency, and the impact that will have on the Pension Benefit Guarantee Board (PBGC) and efforts to get Composite Plans enacted as part of a new legislative package. "The long-term solvency of Central States is now questionable," DeFrehn said, "and PBGC has projected that they will need some $15 billion in assets to remain viable when they are currently generating $250 million annually through PBGC contributions." Such a scenario would require contributions to increase more than fourfold, which is a non-starter.
Senate Finance Committee Tax and Benefits Counsel Preston Rutledge weighed in on the political landscape and priorities of Congress, noting that what some may consider unrelated issues are coalescing under the umbrella of pension reform. Mr. Miller summed up the panel by saying, "Who is the Federal Government to stand in the way of this industry from saving themselves!"
Worker Misclassification & More
Congressman Tom MacArthur (R-NJ) discussed the bill he cosponsored with Congressman Donald Norcross (D-NJ) that would clarify worker misclassification in the construction industry. "New Jersey is projected to lose $500 million per year in revenue because of the misclassification of employees as independent contractors," he said.
||ICE's Lobbyist Colin Keohan briefs the group on misclassification
Representative Lou Barletta (R-PA), Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), and Representative John Delaney (D-MD) all spoke on the importance of the Federal Government's investment in infrastructure and the impact it could have on the economy and our country's competitiveness with the world. "Studies have shown that for every $1 spent on infrastructure, you see $2 of economic growth," said Rep. Delaney.
Representative David McKinley (R-WV) finished the morning's session by speaking at length about the new Congressional Building Trades Caucus, and the need to educate those on Capitol Hill of the unique issues impacting the construction industry. "I am one of two licensed engineers in Congress, out of 535. There are 242 attorneys, not that there's anything wrong with that, but just keep in mind that is what we're dealing with."
The QCA Program concluded on Wednesday with North
America's Building Trades Union's President Sean McGarvey addressing those in attendance. He provided a heartfelt perspective on MPRA's impact on labor, and Treasury's rejection of Central States. "It is always a powerful statement when both management and labor can walk into an office on Capitol Hill with the same message, and I applaud you on your efforts here this week!" said McGarvey.
ICE is pleased to announce that we have retained the services of Colin Keohan as our lobbyist on Capitol Hill. Mr. Keohan has over 15 years experience as a lobbyist and regulatory attorney and has worked at various state and federal agencies including the Federal Election Commission and more recently at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. He will be working with other member organizations of the Construction Employers of America (CEA) to represent ICE and and our legislative priorities. Mr. Keohan can be reached at
or at (202) 375-9819.
SAVE Program Develops Ergonomics
for Masonry Apprentices
Researchers, with funding from The Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR) continue to partner with ICE through the Masonry r2p Partnership to develop a comprehensive ergonomics training program for masonry apprentices.
SAVE, which stands for Safety Voice for Ergonomics (SAVE) is in its second year of development. During the first year, the research team, headed by Dan Anton at Eastern Washington University, met with the Partnership, were given the opportunity to meet with instructors at the national training center to get their input on the pros and cons of such training, and conducted a focus group with masonry contractors. Through this focus group, the research team gained a better understanding of the barriers to apprentices speaking up about ergonomics hazards they observe on jobsites. In addition, the researchers surveyed apprentices at 12 BAC-IMI training centers across the U.S. to assess their access to and use of the electronic devices such as smart phones, computers and tablets, they plan to use to deliver the training.
With feedback from these stakeholders, the researchers developed the training program, which consists of videos and hands on activities, and covers risk factors for injury and potential solutions, as well as units that provide apprentices with strategies for appropriately raising ergonomic hazards with supervisors. Thanks to the generous help of Shawn Lenczowski at the Portland training center and Joe Vanek at the Minneapolis training center, as well as their instructors and apprentices, the researchers were able to test the training units and gain important feedback on what did and did not work. The training program is now being modified and improved in response.
In the months ahead, the researchers will be testing the improved training materials at nine BAC-IMI training centers across the country and making any necessary final adjustments. Once reviewed with the Partnership and finalized, the training program will be made available for distribution through IMI to all BAC-IMI training centers.
CEA Weighs In On Party Platforms
The Construction Employers of America, a union building trades advocacy organization to which ICE belongs, wrote to the Platform Committees for the Democratic National Convention and Republican National Convention asking them to include policies that support the domestic construction industry. CEA advocated that the parties' official platforms promote policies that honor the vital role that highly skilled union building trade shops play in creating and maintaining the country's infrastructure, supporting small business, and strengthening the middle class.
CEA requested that both Convention Platform Committees include policies that will ensure the country continues to support and nurture a vibrant, high-quality domestic construction industry. Highly skilled union building trade shops strengthen the middle class and are good for the country. CEA member companies are family-owned businesses that follow the rules and provide superior wages and benefits--including health insurance, pensions, and worker safety investments--to their employees.
CEA offered to work with the Platform Committees to promote national policies that move America forward. From investing in infrastructure to training the next generation of high-quality construction workers, there are several important policies that CEA urged the Platform Committees to incorporate into their official Convention Platforms:
- Promote Sound Infrastructure Policies and invest in our nation's aging infrastructure
- Modernize Retirement Plan Options through federal authorization of composite plans
- Prepare the Next Generation of Skilled Workers by supporting apprenticeship training programs
- Invest in Energy Efficient Buildings and set and enforce strong and attainable building codes
- Enhance Manufacturing Efficiency and support policies that advance the deployment of combined heat and power and waste heat to power technologies
- Support Responsible Employers Through Bid Listing and require prime contractor project winners to use the listed subcontractor at the price listed
- Close Employee Misclassification Loophole through reform of existing tax law to identify bad actors so the government can recoup lost tax revenue
Our industry is working to ensure that our federal policy needs are known to the next President and is promoting swift action on these initiatives which will strengthen the economy and create good paying jobs. CEA stands ready to work with both presidential nominees and the parties' Platform Committees to advance common sense policies that reflect the importance of a strong union building trade construction industry.
Education and Advocacy in the Wake of the Release of New Silica Rule
The Construction Industry Safety Coalition (CISC), which ICE is a member of, is continuing the fight against the parts of OSHA's new silica rule that we believe threaten the competitiveness of signatory masonry contractors in the US court system. With the new rule in place, we have also turned our attention to educating our membership on the final rule. Bradford Hammock of Jackson Lewis P.C., the attorney for CISC, has recorded a webinar, "OSHA's New Final Rule on Crystalline Silica: What You Need to Know." ICE affiliates can go to the members section of the ICE website to obtain the password and link to the webinar.
Participants in this webinar will able to:
- Understand the history of the crystalline silica standard as well as key compliance dates.
- Comprehend the scope and the application of the standard to construction industry.
- Detail the compliance requirements for jobsite activities covered by the standard.
Hammock will be participating in the ICE Collective Bargaining Conference on October 13-15, where he will speak about what is required of ICE members under the new rule and participate in the discussion about what can be done in collective bargaining and through labor/management relationships to attempt to level the playing field the rule has tilted.
OSHA Announces the Issuance of the Final Electronic Recordkeeping Rule
The new rule requires:
- Companies with 250 or more employees, in covered industries including construction, must electronically submit to OSHA injury and illness information from OSHA Forms 300 (log), 300A (summary), and 301 (incident report) annually.
- Establishments with 20-249 employees in certain industries-including construction-must electronically submit annually information from OSHA Form 300A only.
- Employee involvement in the recordkeeping system, such as informing employees of how they are to report a work-related injury, providing employees access to records, and establishing reasonable procedures for employees to report injuries.
- A prohibition from discriminating against an employee for reporting a work-related fatality, injury, or illness.
- Electronic submission of information through a secure website.
This final rule becomes effective on January 1, 2017, except for § 1904.35 (employee involvement) and §1904.36 (prohibition against discrimination/retaliation), which became effective on August 10, 2016.
OSHA intends to post some of the data submitted to their website and also use this information for enforcement and compliance assistance efforts. In addition, State Plan States are required to adopt identical recordkeeping and reporting regulations.
The 273 page pre-publication copy of the rule can be found
TAUC Union Labor Supply Survey
The Second Association of Union Constructors (TAUC) Union Labor Supply Survey Report is available on TAUC's website.
The comprehensive 83-page report builds on last year's initial study, providing even more detail, data cuts and historical analysis. It is designed to give construction professionals an in-depth understanding of the current state of union labor supply in the construction and maintenance industry throughout the United States.
to download executive summary.
to download full report.
Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels has selected Dean McKenzie as the new director of the agency's Directorate of Construction. McKenzie served as director of OSHA's Office of Construction Services from 2012-2013, then became the deputy director in 2013, and has been the acting director since January of this year.
McKenzie worked in construction, particularly industrial, in Indiana, Florida, Colorado and the Caribbean for more than 40 years. He has been a licensed general contractor, business owner, and project and operations manager.
ICE and its Construction Employers of America (CEA) safety partners will be meeting with the new director this Winter to discuss our priorities and concerns.