Column: How well do you explain roofing options to clients? | Permits, starts point to U.S. housing resurgence | 34 states increase construction workforce in January
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March 20, 2013
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Column: How well do you explain roofing options to clients?
As weather events become more extreme, choosing the right roofing materials becomes more important, writes Steve Maxwell. In this article, he explains why a whole-roof underlayment and zinc strips are important, and which shingles or tiles work best on different roofs. Ottawa Citizen (Ontario) (3/18)
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Sloped Cover Design Meets International Building Code Requirements
Bilco's Lumivent® combines the security and protection of an automatic fire vent with the added benefits of a skylight—saving lives and reducing energy costs. The product's sloped cover design meets International Building Code Requirements (2012 IBC 2610.3). Visit www.bilco.com for more information.
 
News & Trends
Permits, starts point to U.S. housing resurgence
Adding to accumulating evidence of a meaningful revival in the U.S. housing sector, the number of construction permits applied for in February rose 4.6% to a nearly five-year high while housing starts increased 0.8%, the Commerce Department reported. "We're optimistic about the housing recovery. We'll continue to see construction pick up. Housing continues to be a bright spot for the economy," said Anika Khan, a senior economist at Wells Fargo Securities. Bloomberg (3/19)
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34 states increase construction workforce in January
Construction employment rose in 34 states in January and has increased in 24 states over the past 12 months, according to an analysis of federal labor data by the Associated General Contractors of America. Texas topped the list of states that added the most number of workers between January 2012 and January 2013, while Kansas didn't do so well, shedding 4.7% of its construction jobs over the year. Florida came in at No. 18 of the states adding the most construction jobs. American City Business Journals/San Antonio/Alamo City Beat blog (3/18), American City Business Journals/Wichita, Kan. (3/18), Sunshine State News (Fla.) (3/18)
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NYC's 1WTC soars closer to completion
Columnist Mike Kelly takes a tour of 1 World Trade Center in New York City, where the spire is being assembled high above the ground. He describes how it feels to be looking down upon the city and the memorial pools. "[T]his project is far greater than the sum of its parts," said Bill Baroni, deputy executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. "It is perhaps the most important construction project we’ve ever done. It is a moral imperative that we get it right." The Record (Hackensack, N.J.) (3/19)
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N.M. roofing group educates clients about "unscrupulous" contractors
The New Mexico Roofing Contractors Association wants customers to be able to discern "unscrupulous and unprofessional" roofing contractors and why choosing a professional and reliable contractor makes sense. The initiative involves the launch of a new website, a Facebook page and ads in various media. "We’re going to make sure New Mexico homeowners know the difference between a real professional contractor and a fly-by-night operator," said Mark Carillo, the group's executive director. American City Business Journals/Albuquerque, N.M./Morning Edition blog (3/19)
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N.J. roofing company faces OSHA fines for fall-protection violations
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has levied about $57,000 in fines against Conte Roofing in Ridgefield, N.J., for violating fall-protection standards and other workplace-safety regulations. The agency began to investigate the company last October after a worker fell 20 feet from a commercial roof and broke his neck. The company also was charged with failing to provide fall protection and ladder training to its workers. The Record (Hackensack, N.J.) (3/19)
Energy & the Environment
"Sloppy science" makes reflective roofs popular, not necessarily good
Reflective roofs could exacerbate the effect of global warming and do more harm than good for buildings in northern climates, writes Samir Ibrahim, director of design services and project reviews at Carlisle SynTec. He says their popularity is based on "sloppy science and good marketing" and points to a recent study done by Stanford University that highlights some of the problems with white roofs. The Huffington Post (3/18)
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EPA: D.C. among cities with most Energy Star-certified buildings
Washington, D.C., has emerged as a role model for sustainable building, as it has the second-highest number of Energy Star-certified structures among U.S. cities despite being smaller than the leader, Los Angeles, in terms of land area. The U.S. capital aims to become "the greenest, healthiest and most livable city in the U.S." by 2032, according to its Sustainable D.C. project. EarthTechling.com (3/16)
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In the Office
Dealing with employee negativity
Negative employees can take a serious toll on your company's culture, writes Tim Parker. Don't let employees make excuses for their poor behavior, and give them a time frame in which to improve their attitudes, he recommends. If nothing else works, you may have to remove negative employees from your organization. Intuit Small Business Blog (3/18)
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Government & Regulatory
Business Roundtable plans push to overhaul tax code
The Business Roundtable plans to embark on an extensive campaign to educate the public on what it says is the need to modernize the U.S. tax code. It will promote the idea that the corporate tax rate should be reduced to 25% and offshore income taxes should be limited. Some fear that this push by the largest corporations could widen a gulf opened with small business advocates, who felt betrayed by big businesses' acquiescence to allowing the top income tax rate to rise in the fiscal cliff negotiations. Many small businesses are taxed at individual rates. The Hill/On the Money blog (3/18)
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NRCA News
NRLRC offers webinar about ICE audits
The National Roofing Legal Resource Center will hold "ICE Audits: Are You at Risk?" March 21 at 1 p.m. EDT. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has increased its investigations, and many employers nationwide have been ordered to submit their I-9 employment eligibility forms and other documents for inspection -- often with little notice. These administrative audits can lead to significant fines and penalties, as well as criminal charges against your company. The 90-minute webinar will help you determine whether you and your company are in compliance or at risk of an inspection and fines. The webinar is free for NRLRC members; the NRCA member price is $55, and the retail price is $75. Learn more, and register.
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NRCA offers F.Y.I. brochure

NRCA's F.Y.I. brochure highlights roofing material options and costs, how to choose a roofing professional, and how to maintain roof systems. It educates residential customers about basic roofing terminology and rules of thumb for buying steep-slope roof systems. It also has a "Commonly Asked Questions" section for potential customers. The member price for a set of 100 brochures is $50, and the retail price is $100. Purchase the brochure.
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SmartQuote
Quality is not an act, it is a habit."
-- Aristotle,
Greek philosopher
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