March 26, 2021
Safety Services and the AGC Value Proposition

I am regularly reminded how AGC contractors are the best in the business. Whether it is by project owners seeking input from industry-leading firms or committed individuals pushing the boundaries of performance, AGC members are at the forefront of innovation and redefining value in the industry. Nowhere do AGC members stand taller among peers than in their cultural commitment to safety. The numbers speak for themselves. The Construction Health And Safety Excellence (CHASE) program now boasts over 45 AGC member firms that consistently outperform their peers in hours worked against recordable incidents. (add CHASE link to website) The CHASE program stands as an 18-year model cooperative partnership with MNOSHA that has elevated the game of AGC members and delivered proven results.

At its core, building a safety culture requires committing to quality education and training. Again, AGC leads the way by providing a robust slate of educational offerings for members through the Supervisor Training Program (STP) curriculum taught by leading industry practitioners. (link to STP on website) Over the 40+ years of the STP training program, more than 250 graduates have gone on to add value and build the industry from within. Together, the CHASE program and STP provide an impressive testament to being the best!
Transition and Change Coming to AGC Safety Services

It is with very mixed emotions that I inform members of the pending retirement of longtime AGC of Minnesota Safety Director Doug Swenson. After almost 40 years in the industry and two stints with AGC, Doug will cap has distinguished career later this summer. A true industry legend and quiet leader, Doug has always been most comfortable in the field, where he has tirelessly elevated AGC of Minnesota’s Safety Services to unparalleled levels. The many programs and educational training and certifications that bear Doug’s fingerprints will live on well beyond his tenure and will always serve to remind us of the importance of human lives and the need to work safely. We certainly plan to celebrate the many contributions of Doug’s career and will provide opportunity for members to pay tribute to his legacy as his time with AGC draws to a close.
I am also extremely pleased to announce the hiring of AGC of Minnesota’s new Director of Safety and Educational Services, Matt Semerad. Matt comes to AGC with a strong record of construction-related experience, having worked for a variety of contractors and professional construction service providers. He holds a degree in Construction Management from the University of Minnesota and is well qualified to build upon the legacy of strong member-focused safety services that define the AGC brand. We are also fortunate to leverage Matt’s experience in teaching Supervisor Training Program (STP) classes. We look forward to Matt’s contributions in both educating the next generation of project managers and field personnel as well as enhancing the AGC safety value proposition.

You will see both Matt and Doug throughout the coming months working side by side as mentor and protégé. I encourage you to reach out and welcome Matt, wish Doug well, and to share with them your thoughts and observations of how to best add value in the safety services space.

Tim Worke, CEO
Legislature Eyes Budget Talks After Holiday Break

When legislators return from a week-long recess on April 6, they will start presenting more concrete proposals for the next two-year budget. Key committee deadlines have passed to help focus the House and Senate’s budget and policy considerations and priorities this session.

Both majorities in the House and the Senate have set their budget targets. This means the finance committees know what their limits are within the General Fund and typically reflect the priorities of each legislative body. Minnesota is the only state with a divided legislature. Below is a brief overview of the House and Senate targets:
Senate (Republican-led)
  • Federal tax conformity on Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans
  • Elimination of Unemployment Insurance taxes for COVID-19
  • Increased spending on transportation, health and human services, education
  • 5% administrative reduction all of state agencies

House (Democrat-led)
  • Increased spending focused on education and health and human services
  • Investments to improve economic security, including paid family leave, earned sick and safe time, affordable housing, and worker protection and support

For more information about the proposal, click here.

The Legislature must finish its work in the regular session by May 17. The next fiscal year begins July 1, 2021. There are still outstanding questions to understand how incoming federal dollars will be directed while the legislature is negotiating the budget.

The week of March 29 is a great time with the holiday break to check in with your legislator on issues affecting your business and the construction industry. Find your legislators here. Contact Laura Ziegler if you need any assistance or have questions. 
Senate Confirms Marty Walsh for Secretary of Labor

On March 22, the Senate confirmed the nomination of Boston Mayor Marty Walsh to become the next Secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor by a bipartisan final vote of 68-29. Mayor Walsh has a long history with the construction industry, as he is the former head of the Boston Building Trades Council and began his career with a local Boston Laborers’ union. For more information on the confirmation, click here.

AGC-MN will be releasing the new form construction contracts hopefully soon. We are holding them because of a bill being discussed in the MN Legislature regarding that duty to defend that would have significant consequences.
Prefabrication Construction Contracts

AGC America is hosting a webinar on April 13 on prefabrication construction cases. Learn more here.
Labor Negotiations

AGC America is hosting a webinar on April 13 on prefabrication construction Spring 2021 Labor Negotiations are underway. If you are signatory with Cement Masons NW MN / Duluth HH, Cement Masons ND, Carpenters ND, Millwrights 1348, Operators ND or Laborers ND, and have not been contacted, email Mike as soon as possible. 
MnDOT Request for Letters of Interest

MnDOT is releasing a Request for Letters of Interest for the $200-300 million I-494 Airport to Hwy 169 Design-Build project. Download the document, or find more information here, including the project Sharepoint site.
CM/GC Request for Proposals Available
TH 10/75 – 11th Street Underpass in Moorhead, MN

The Request for Proposals (RFP) is issued by the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) to all firms and teams of firms interested in a Construction Manager/General Contractor (CMGC) professional/technical services contract for the TH 10/75 – 11th Street Underpass project located in Clay County, Minnesota. MnDOT invites such Proposers to submit competitive proposals for CMGC services for the Project as more specifically described in this RFP. Information here.
Constructability Review Request

Due to a high calculated daily road user cost and lengthy detours required, MnDOT is seeking input on the staging and constructability of the grading operations for the
SP 0119-30 (TH 210/US 169) – Unbonded Concrete Overlay project. MnDOT is hopeful that this input will aid in the timely construction of a quality roadway and minimize the amount of negative impacts to the traveling public during construction. Click here for all the information.

GSOC has determined it is important to make necessary one call locate changes. These change are targeted to begin April 21, 2021. Please review the information here so you have the necessary tools to start your next project.

The changes include:
  • Dynamic High-Volume Ticket Alert Notice
  • Meet Ticket Recommendations for Projects with Long Duration of Work
  • Update Ticket Process Change
  • White Lining Responses
  • Mark Entire Lot Instructions
2021-2022 AGC of Minnesota Foundation Scholarships Open

Students enrolled in an accredited post-secondary institution in a construction field are encouraged to apply for the AGC of Minnesota Foundation 2021-2022 scholarships. Application and instructions can be found here.
AGC Workforce Development Scholarships Open

The AGC Education and Research Foundation offers Workforce Development Scholarships to students enrolled in accredited technical schools or craft training programs in any discipline of commercial construction. Students in technical or approved craft training programs will have until June 1st to apply for $1,000 scholarships (renewal for up to two years) from the AGC Education and Research Foundation.

To review the complete list of criteria click here. Students can click here to apply.  The Education and Research Foundation is committed to taking steps to ensure students have the technical skills needed to immediately enter into the commercial construction workforce. For further questions, contact Courtney Bishop.
EEOC Approves Resolution Against Violence

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently unanimously approved a resolution condemning the recent violence, harassment, and acts of bias against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States. The resolution reaffirms the Commission’s commitment to combat all forms of harassment and discrimination against members of AAPI communities, and to ensure equal opportunity, inclusion, and dignity for all in the workplace.
Free Bystander Intervention to Stop Anti-Asian American Harassment

This one-hour, interactive training will teach you Hollaback!’s 5D’s of bystander intervention methodology. We’ll start by talking about the types of disrespect that Asian and Asian American folks are facing right now — from microaggressions to violence — using a tool we call the “spectrum of disrespect.” You’ll learn what to look for and the positive impact that bystander intervention has on individuals and communities. We’ll talk through five strategies for intervention: distract, delegate, document, delay, and direct; and how to prioritize your own safety while intervening.

There are multiple training dates and times available, beginning April 5. Click here for more information and registration.

AGC of Minnesota welcomes the following new members:
My Medical Clinic
1560 Beam Avenue
Maplewood, MN 55109

My Medical Clinic offers a full spectrum of Occupational Health Services including immigration medical exams, DOT physical exams, pre-employment drug testing, agility testing, drug screening, random testing, asbestos testing, silica physical exams and more. My Medical Clinic has certification status as a SBE and MBE firm
TR Concrete
20002 Ferret Street NW
Nowthen, MN 55330

TR Concrete specializes in commercial and industrial masonry and concrete services, including foundations, vertical concrete structures, masonry, excavating and washing.
Leadership Blueprint 2021-2022

AGC Minnesota is pleased to announce that the 2021/22 Leadership Blueprint schedule is complete and nominations are now being accepted. Class size is limited to 21 people and applicants must be nominated by their supervisor. The Leadership Blueprint is available to AGC Minnesota members only and will begin November 4-5, 2021.

Please submit a completed nominating form and supporting documentation to Merry Beckmann by June 30, 2021. Successful candidates will be notified no later than August 2, 2021.
National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction: May 3-7

OSHA announced that it has scheduled the eighth annual National Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction for May 3-7, 2021. OSHA encourages construction employers and other stakeholders to join the event to promote awareness and training to address one of the industry’s most serious dangers.

OSHA’s Fall Prevention Stand-Down webpage offers a wide range of compliance resources in many languages.
Save the Dates for Golf and Sporting Clays

Mark your calendars for these AGC summer events:

  • Golf Tournament: August 6
  • Sporting Clays Fundraiser: September 15

More information on both events can be found here.
Your Trusted Resource

Associated General Contractors of Minnesota 

525 Park Street, Suite 110 |  St. Paul, MN 55103