Associations - Page 2

ASA Midwest Council Meet the General Contractors Expo on February 1, 2023

/

The American Subcontractors Association (ASA) – Midwest Council will host its 21st  annual Meet the General Contractors Expo on February 1, 2023, at the St. Charles Convention Center.
The yearly event gives area subcontractors and construction professionals the opportunity for valuable networking time with many of  St. Louis’ top general contractors.

The expo provides an ideal opportunity for construction industry professionals to network with general contractors, all in one place and in a relaxed setting. The expo is specifically designed for networking and building relationships with multiple representatives from the area general contractorsAs of today, there are 34 GC exhibitors participating in this must attend event for the STL construction industry!

2023 General Contractor Exhibitors
Alberici Constructors, Inc.ARCO ConstructionBEX Construction ServicesBrinkmann ConstructorsBSI ConstructorsContegra Construction CompanyConway ContractingEagan Building GroupEchelon ConstructorsHelmkamp Construction Co.IMPACT Strategies, Inc.Integrate Construction PartnersInterface Construction Corp.KAI BuildKadean ConstructionKeeley ConstructionKCI Construction Co.The Korte CompanyKozeny-Wagner, Inc.Landco ConstructionMcCarthy Building Companies, Inc.McGrath & Associates, Inc.Paric CorporationPinnacle Contracting, Inc.Poettker Construction Co.R.G. Ross Construction Co.Rhodey ConstructionRoanoke ConstructionRussellSITELINES, Inc.S. M. Wilson & Co.Tarlton CorporationUnited Construction Ent. Co. of St. Louis, Inc.Wright Construction Services

Advance Expo Registration is $85 for ASA Members and $125 for Non-Members. Registration includes hosted bar and appetizers. Register online at  https://asamidwest.com/asaevents/asa-meet-the-gcs-expo-2023/by January 18, 2023.  After January 18th , 2023,  there is a $15 surcharge on late registration, so register today for the early bird discount.

Advance Registration is required, and space is filling up very quickly so register soon.

ASA will have a booth at the expo with information about the St. Louis chapter, and details of upcoming industry events for 2023.  The event is open to ASA Members only from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m., and then open to all registered attendees from 4:30 to 7:00 p.m.

The American Subcontractors Association (ASA) Midwest Council is a construction trade association made up of quality specialty subcontractors and suppliers serving the construction industry and the community in the greater St. Louis metropolitan area and southern Illinois. The ASA Midwest Council’s purpose is to improve the construction process through active participation in education, advocacy and cooperation. For more information about the ASA Midwest Council, visit www.asamidwest.com or contact Executive Director, Susan Winkelmann at 314-845-0855. ASA Midwest Council – Building. Community. Est. 1967

IBEW/NECA Electrical Connection Donates Services To Correct Faulty Electrical Repairs to Woman’s Home

/

Warns Residents to Avoid Unskilled and Unlicensed Repairman

            Sparks shooting out of a bedroom wall socket, arcing from the main electrical panel, flickering lights, and exposed light fixtures with hanging wires – all the result of a slick repair sales pitch that made Angela Bryant’s first home a nightmare.  

Faced with up to $6,000 in electrical repairs to her home in St. Louis’ Mark Twain neighborhood, Bryant opted for what appeared to be a cheap solution from an unskilled repairman.  It made her home even more unsafe and unlivable. 

            With no hope for a solution, Bryant was directed by a social agency to contact the International Brotherhood of Electrical Worker (IBEW) Local 1. She connected with business representative Chris Clermont and he engaged IBEW and St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) leadership, which agreed to fund Bryant’s much needed repairs through their Electrical Connection partnership.

            “I was blown away after talking to Chris.  Somebody actually cared,” said Bryant. “I don’t have to be afraid of living in my home anymore. IBEW/NECA cared enough to make my house livable through their incredible generosity.”  Clermont engaged IBEW-signatory contractor RJP Electric to assess the Bryant’s needs and perform the repairs. 

            “This was a more than 80-year-old home that already had a history of jury-rigged electrical repairs by the unskilled,” noted Tom Piotrowski, project manager, RJP Electric.  “The latest attempt at repairs made it even worse.  The main breaker and busbar were corroded and there were exposed wires with improper splicing throughout the home.”

            “Half of my home wasn’t powered,” said Bryant. “I had to unplug every electrical device just to do laundry. The most frightening thing was sparks flying out of my bedroom wall socket and the arcing at the electrical panel.”

            “It is an all too common problem,” noted Frank Jacobs, business manager, IBEW Local 1.  “People fall for a sales pitch on electrical repairs by someone who is devoid of the skills needed to make safe repairs that comply with electrical codes. That creates not only a shock hazard but a fire hazard.”

            On December 12, 2022, RJP made extensive repairs to the home, fixing the electrical panel, the improper splicing and secured all connections within junction boxes, bringing the home up code.

      “There are other issues beyond the hidden dangers created by unskilled so-called ‘handymen,’” noted Kyle McKenna, executive vice president, St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).  “When it comes time to sell the home, any reputable electrical inspector is going to find and require the faulty repairs to be fixed. So why live with the hazard?”

            McKenna noted that many of the issues in Bryant’s home are similar to what the Electrical Connection partnership finds each year when it donates services to help Rebuilding Together St. Louis make low income homes safer.

The Electrical Connection and local inspection agencies say most electrical problems created by the unskilled involve attempts to tie in new equipment and wiring with existing electrical infrastructure. That includes:

  • Too many circuits for the number of positions in an electrical panel and electrical service panels located in a bathroom or a habitable room, often a room addition.  It should be in a utility area. Panels are also found mounted on moist walls where water leaks in, leading to corrosion and rust.
  • GFCIs added to kitchen countertops in an existing metal box that’s too small.  Many homes built before 1978 have this issue.
  • Improper splices and splices made outside of electrical boxes. Cables entering enclosures without the connector. Old style service entrance cables are often found with deteriorated jackets
  • Attempting to integrate old knob and tube wiring with new electrical wiring.
  • Decks added without permits, leading to unsafe overhead electric drops that are low enough to be a hazard to anyone on the deck. 
  • Outdoor receptacles installed with the wrong weatherproof cover and outdoor light fixtures installed without the required electrical box.
  • Illegal circuit runs to outbuildings.
  • Ampere rating of an overcurrent device exceeding the rating of the circuit conductors

The Electrical Connection offers the largest data base of licensed electrical contractors and skilled electricians dedicated to building in compliance with the National Electrical Code.  Learn more at www.electricalconnection.org

AGC of Missouri Names 2023 Leadership

/

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri (AGCMO) announced its 2023 officers and board of directors for the statewide association representing contractors and suppliers in 110 counties throughout Missouri.

Tom Huster, president of KCI Construction Company, has been elected chairman of the board.  KCI, with offices in St. Louis and Springfield, MO, began in 1922 as a carpentry construction firm named Kloster Company. While maintaining a focus on self-performed work through the decades, it changed its name to Kloster Construction as it added concrete, sewer, heavy concrete, deep foundation, and highway and bridge work. In 1995 the company’s name changed to KCI and it further expanded to include self-performed earthwork and utilities work. KCI and its predecessor companies have been members of AGC since 1950 and Huster has served on the AGC of Missouri board since 2020, and also served on the former AGC of St. Louis board.

Other AGC of Missouri officers for 2023 are: chairman-elect of the board – Kyle Phillips, Herzog Contracting Corp.; secretary/treasurer – Mike Rallo, Jr., PARIC Corporation; and immediate past chairman of the board – Sean Thouvenout, Branco Enterprises, Inc. Also serving on the 2023 board of directors are highway & transportation division chair – Doug Fronick, APAC-Central, Inc.; building division chair – Michael Deihl, Holland Construction Service, Inc.; and utility infrastructure division chair – Steve Sellenriek, Sellenriek Construction, Inc.

Serving on the board as directors representing contractor members are Michael Luth, Fred M. Luth & Sons, Inc.; Earl Ming, Alberici Constructors, Inc.; and Andy Ernst, Pace Construction Company.

Jeremy Knernschield, Collins & Hermann, Inc. also will serve as a director, representing specialty contractors, while Steve Hicks, PE, S.H. Smith & Company, Inc. will serve as director, representing supplier/service providers. Nick Arb of Guarantee Electrical Co. will serve ex-officio, representing the Construction Leadership Council. Drew Leary, Capital Paving and Construction LLC will also serve ex-officio, representing the Young Executives Club.

Announcing the new board’s formation, Leonard Toenjes, CAE, president of AGCMO said, “We are fortunate to have such an experienced group of people involved in the construction industry to help lead our association through the coming year.  Missouri’s construction outlook is generally positive as we work to meet current challenges related to workforce, supply chains, rising costs and economic uncertainty. Like many others, our industry is adapting to a changing environment, and these leaders are helping to provide our members with ‘real-world’ solutions and resources to meet the challenges.”                

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri (AGCMO) represents the united voice of the construction industry throughout the state of Missouri. AGC of Missouri represents nearly 550 commercial, industrial, highway, transportation, and utility infrastructure contractors, industry partners and related firms in 110 counties across the state of Missouri. AGCMO operates offices in St. Louis, Jefferson City and Springfield. Visit: www.agcmo.org

$2 Billion in New St. Louis Area Infrastructure Investments for Construction Industry

/

To be showcased at networking event on February 28; Lt. Governor Mike Kehoe to Deliver Keynote Address

Officials from numerous St. Louis area government agencies, municipalities and utilities will showcase more than $2 billion in upcoming infrastructure spending plans for local construction contractors and other industry professionals at the 2023 Investment in Infrastructure Expo to be held February 28, 2023 at the St. Charles Convention Center.  The infrastructure project presenters will discuss their plans and bidding opportunities one-on-one with hundreds of general and specialty contractors in attendance in a trade show floor networking environment that will also feature exhibits by dozens of equipment dealers and suppliers and a keynote address by Missouri Lt. Governor Mike Kehoe.

Sponsored by the SITE Improvement Association for the seventh year, more than 500 construction industry partners are expected to attend. The event will run from 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm with networking and drinks/appetizers beginning at 3:30 pm.

“With the large amount of new state and federal infrastructure investments flowing into the St. Louis region over the next five years, the Expo provides everyone a look at the new infrastructure investments that will enhance our region’s competitiveness, create good jobs and make our economy stronger for decades to come,” said Jeremy Bennett, Executive Director of SITE Improvement Association. “This year’s event is structured to maximize the opportunity for everyone to come together, build meaningful relationships, ask questions, and help prepare more competitive bids. We are honored that Lt. Governor Kehoe will join us as he recognizes the importance of this event to our industry and to the state’s economy.”

Project Presenters will staff individual booths to showcase their project information in an open networking environment with interested contractors. Bennett says this process will result in better quality projects and ensure the best use of the billions in taxpayer and ratepayer dollars that will be spent on these projects.

Project presenters currently scheduled to participate in the Expo, are listed below, with more expected to be added:

  • U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Missouri Department of Transportation
  • St. Louis County Highway Department
  • St. Charles County Highway Department
  • Franklin County Highway Department
  • Metropolitan Sewer District – St. Louis
  • Ameren
  • City of Bridgeton
  • City of Chesterfield
  • City of Crestwood
  • City of Ellisville
  • City of Kirkwood
  • City of Manchester
  • City of O’Fallon
  • City of St. Louis

Tickets to the Expo are $25 per person and can be purchased by visiting www.sitestl.org/event/2023-investment-in-infrastructure-expo/ or through the QR Code below.  Sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities are also available by contacting Leah Behlmann at leah@sitestl.org or by calling SITE’s office 314-966-2950.  More information about the event is featured in this 2-minute video:  https://youtu.be/HQz7iruSP6E

AGC-Sage survey finds Contractors are Upbeat But Less Than A Year Ago,

/

Contractors are generally optimistic about the outlook for nonresidential and multifamily construction in 2023, but optimism is less widespread than a year ago, based on the 2023 AGC-Sage Construction Hiring and Business Outlook Survey, which AGC released on Wednesday. The survey included 1,032 responses submitted November 7-December 9. Respondents were asked whether the dollar value of projects they compete for would be higher or lower in 2023. The net reading (the percent of respondents expecting a higher dollar value less the percent expecting a lower amount) was positive for 14 out of 17 project types. The broadest optimism was for highway and bridge projects and transportation facilities; for both segments, the net reading was positive by 42 percentage points. There were also relatively high net readings for water and sewer projects, 38; federal agency work, 37; power and other health care (such as clinics, labs, and testing facilities), 28 each; and hospital and public building construction, 23 each. But only the last had a higher net reading than in the 2020 survey. The largest declines, 31 percentage points each, were in the net readings for warehouse construction (from 41 in the 2022 survey to 10) and multifamily projects (from 32 to 1). Net readings were negative for lodging (-4, down from 6 last year), private office (down from -8 to -21) and retail construction (down from -8 to -22). Two-thirds (69%) of firms expect to add employees in 2023, down slightly from 74% a year ago. Only 5% of firms reported having worked on new projects funded by the 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, while 6% said they had won bids but have not started work. Breakouts of the answers by respondents in 18 states, the four Census regions, three revenue sizes, and by union/open-shop showed broadly similar results.

Construction spending (not adjusted for inflation) totaled $1.81 trillion in November at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, up 0.2% from the upwardly revised October rate and up 8.5% year-over-year (y/y), the Census Bureau reported on Tuesday. However, without a deflator, it is impossible to say how much of the y/y gain is in units vs. price. Private residential construction decreased for the sixth-straight month, by 0.5%, with single-family homebuilding down 2.9%, multifamily construction spending up 2.4%, and owner-occupied improvements up 1.3%. Private nonresidential construction spending climbed 1.7%. The largest private nonresidential segment (at the seasonally adjusted November rate)—manufacturing construction—jumped 6.5% (including computer/electronic/electrical, up 16%, and chemical and pharmaceutical, up 0.2%). Commercial construction was flat (consisting of warehouse, down 1.5%; retail, up 1.5%; and farm, up 3.2%). Power rose 1.2% (with electric power up 1.0% and oil and gas field structures and pipelines up 2.0%). Private office and data center construction fell 0.1%. Public construction spending fell 0.1%. The largest public segment, highway and street construction, slid 1.0%. Public education rose 0.1%. Public transportation construction declined 0.2%.

There were 344,000 job openings in construction, not seasonally adjusted, at the end of November, an increase of 21,000 (6.5%) y/y and the largest November total in the 22-year history of the data, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported on Wednesday in its monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) release. Hires fell by 102,000 (-30%) y/y to 234,000 and the hire rate, 3.0% of the month’s employment, was the lowest yet for November. BLS does not break out residential from nonresidential construction in the JOLTS report; however, the Census report on spending is consistent with a drop in residential hiring and an increase in nonresidential openings. Layoffs and discharges totaled 164,000 (2.1% of employees), the lowest November total and rate in series history. Quits fell by 91,000 (47%) to 102,000.

Contractors “are anticipating construction support staff wage increases to average 4.5% by year end, up from the 2021 actual increase of 4.4%” and 3.8% in 2020, construction pay consultancy PAS reported on December 27, based on its survey of 209 firms. “When we factor in those contractors who are freezing pay, the projected 2022 increase is 4.3%. Looking forward, we think 2023 support staff increases will likely mimic 2022 activity.”

“Through November, about $33 billion in new auto-factory investment has been pledged in the U.S., including money for the construction of new assembly plants and battery-making facilities, according to the Center for Automotive Research,” the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday. “The 11-month total adds to the $37 billion in new auto-factory spending committed in 2021,” up from $9 billion in 2017. Locations in the South account for about two-thirds of the 2021 and 2022 investment announcements, although there have also been projects in Michigan, Ohio, Kansas, and elsewhere. The Census spending release showed a 26% y/y jump in transportation equipment plant construction.

Milestones and Advancements in 2022 Reinforce St. Louis Region as a Global Freight Hub

/

The St. Louis region marked a series of major milestones in 2022 that enhanced the bi-state area’s freight network at a time when the supply chain disruptions were the norm and the need for resiliency and redundancy has never been greater. From the lingering effects of COVID-19 to the historic drought that severely impacted barge traffic on the Mississippi River, 2022 underscored the importance of being able to offer shippers options when it comes to moving their goods. It also further reinforced the effectiveness of the nationally recognized approach the St. Louis region is taking to strengthen freight infrastructure.

“Supply chain hurdles like the low water levels we have experienced the last few months serve as reminders of the importance of multimodal infrastructure providing redundancy and helping to resolve supply chain disruptions,” said Mary Lamie, Executive Vice President – Multi Modal Enterprises for Bi-State Development and head of the St. Louis Regional Freightway enterprise.

Topping the list of the region’s accomplishments in 2022 was the completion of the $222 million project to replace the Merchants Bridge over the Mississippi River. With the grand reopening of the new double track bridge in September, the St. Louis Regional Freightway celebrated the delivery of the region’s highest priority infrastructure project. The new structure can accommodate trains traveling in the opposite direction at the same time, doubling the capacity of the bridge, so it can move freight faster, more cost-effectively and reliably. Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis (TRRA) owns the bridge, which dates to the 1890s and crosses the Mississippi River at St. Louis serving six Class I railroads and Amtrak. TRRA provided 90% of the construction costs, making this project a model for public-private partnerships.

Another regional high priority project also advanced during the past year, with the August announcement by the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) that they have selected Chicago-based Walsh Construction for the Interstate 270 Mississippi River Bridge Replacement and Riverview Drive Interchange project. Jointly funded by IDOT and MoDOT, this bridge replacement project is the result of a unique collaboration between the two DOT’s that resulted in their ability to simultaneously secure hundreds of millions in needed funding to move forward. The multi-year construction project is expected to begin in January 2023.

This past year also was a pivotal period for the plans to bring new Container-On-Vessel (COV) service to the Midwest. The Jefferson County Port Authority received at $25 million grant from Missouri officials to support the development of a new container facility at the port in Herculaneum. It will be a key hub on the new all-water, north-south trade lane connecting the St. Louis region to the lower Mississippi River and on to worldwide destinations. American Patriot Container Transport LLC (APCT) is expected to announce soon the awarding of the contract to build the first four vessels that will be part of the new COV fleet. The U.S. Coast Guard and Seamen’s Church Institute’s Center for Maritime Education Work also began work this past year to prepare for the safe debut of those new vessels.

Other accomplishments in 2022 include funding of corridors of Interstate 70 from Kansas City to St. Louis and improvements to Interstate 55, which further support various port projects in Jefferson County, Missouri. These are just a few of the MoDOT projects on the St. Louis Regional Freightway’s 2023 Priority Projects List, which includes 25 infrastructure projects in Illinois and Missouri totaling more than $3.8 billion. The investments are focused on strengthening critical roads, bridges, rail infrastructure, and port and airport facilities and help to drive the high level of industrial construction occurring on both sides of the Mississippi River in Illinois and Missouri.

“Multimodal transportation is part of an interdependent supply chain, and these are the types of projects that help bridge the gap when there is a weak link in the system,” said Lamie. “We salute the Freight Development Committee, IDOT and MoDOT, East-West Gateway Council of Governments and industry leaders for their leadership with infrastructure investment and their focus on building in redundancy so our region’s freight networks can be part of the solution to the national supply chain disruption.”

The infrastructure investment comes at a critical time as the region continues to see significant new investment in the industrial sector. Modern bulk distribution buildings under construction in the two-state area hit an historic high in early 2022, approaching 8 million square feet (MSF). The record level of construction illustrates the industrial real estate market in the southwestern Illinois and eastern Missouri region continues to expand to meet ever increasing demand as world and domestic markets strive to move beyond the disruption that defined the prior two years. In mid-2022, nearly 7.4 MSF remained under construction in the St. Louis region, a level of construction 78% higher than 2021 and 47% higher than the most recent five-year average. One hundred percent of the modern bulk construction projects underway are speculative, a level of speculative activity that is higher than in 2019, 2020, and 2021 combined, and a clear indication that developers believe the St. Louis market is a solid place for investment.

Further evidence can be seen in more recent announcements, a few of which include plans for a $129 million St. Charles County industrial park in Missouri that is expected to create more than 950 jobs; a new $188 million industrial park to be developed by NorthPoint Development in Maryland Heights, Missouri; and electric car manufacturer Tesla’s plans to open a massive warehouse south of Interstate 270 in Illinois.

The Tesla development would take shape in a noteworthy industrial corridor in Illinois — a 60-mile stretch of Route 3 near St. Louis. Spanning from north of Alton in Madison County to south of Waterloo in Monroe County and bordered by the Mississippi River and Interstate 255, this nationally significant heavy industrial corridor is already a thriving hub for manufacturing and logistics operations that generate more than $16 billion in annual business revenue and support 221,881 direct and indirect jobs. The Illinois Route 3 corridor has distinct advantages over other areas around the country, such as the percentage of direct jobs in manufacturing, transportation and warehousing that greatly eclipse the regional and national averages. More than 20 types of manufacturing operations are present in the corridor, delivering a location quotient of 1.26 or more and indicating a noteworthy regional concentration. 

“These concentrations and logistical connections make it a unique asset in the Midwest from a site selection point of view,” said Doug Rasmussen, CEO and Managing Principal of Steadfast City Economic & Community Partners, the author of a recently completed economic impact study on the Illinois Route 3 corridor. 

The region’s robust aviation sector also made headlines in 2022 as the directors of five of the busiest airports in the bi-state area gathered for a forum that spotlighted not only the unique collaboration that exists between them, but also their collective impact on the St. Louis region’s economy. The event revealed that St. Louis Lambert International Airport and Spirit of St. Louis Airport in eastern Missouri and MidAmerica St. Louis Airport, St. Louis Downtown Airport and St. Louis Regional Airport in southwestern Illinois have a combined annual economic impact that exceeds $10 million. Between all five the airports and their tenants, they employ 36,500 individuals, a number that is set to grow in the coming year as major tenants such as Gulfstream and West Star Aviation expand their operations in the region. In other aviation related news, Lufthansa Airlines launched direct flights from St. Louis Lambert International Airport to Frankfurt Germany in June, marking the return of direct service to Europe for the first time in 20 years.

In May 2022, the St. Louis Regional Freightway hosted the 5th annual FreightWeekSTL, which delivered a wealth of great content spotlighting a series of innovations, investments and partnerships that will make national and global freight movements more efficient. The week-long conference highlighted the St. Louis region’s role in those initiatives and reinforced that one location with global access makes this region a logistics and manufacturing hub primed for continued growth. Highlights can be found at www.TheFreightway.com, where plans for FreightWeekSTL 2023 will also be shared in the coming weeks.

About St. Louis Regional Freightway  

A Bi-State Development enterprise, the St. Louis Regional Freightway is a regional freight district and comprehensive authority for freight operations and opportunities within eight counties in southwestern Illinois and eastern Missouri, which comprise the St. Louis metropolitan area. Public sector and private industry businesses are partnering with the St. Louis Regional Freightway to establish the bi-state region as one of the premier multimodal freight hubs and distribution centers in the United States through marketing and advocacy for infrastructure development that supports the movement of freight. To learn more, visit thefreightway.com.  

Electrical Connection Supports “Shop with a Cop” Programs

Rural and urban “Shop with a Cop” holiday giving programs are again getting support from the IBEW/NECA Electrical Connection partnership.  The partnership has been supporting the St. Francois County “Shop with a Cop” for 27 years.  In 2016, it supported the relaunch of a similar program in Ferguson, Mo. and has supported it ever since.   Both programs received a $5,000 donation to help law enforcement purchase holiday gifts for children that they would not otherwise receive.  The Electrical Connection is a partnership of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 and the St. Louis Chapter, National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).

Danny Miller, COO of Total Electric, first engaged the Electrical Connection in 1995 in the St. Francois County “Shop with a Cop” program.  Total Electric has supported the program for 30 years since its inception.  Today, it has grown to become one of the largest in the nation and served more than 500 children this year.  On December 16, 2022, law enforcement and first responders from throughout the state gathered at the Wal-Mart in Farmington, Mo. to take the children holiday shopping.   

 “Especially in this day and age, it is inspiring to see communities come together through ‘Shop with a Cop’ to brighten the holidays for families in need,” noted Miller. “But more than that, it is an enduring law enforcement trust building program.”

“We greatly appreciate the IBEW/NECA Electrical Connection’s nearly three decades of support which has allowed us to serve so many children,” said Dan Bullock, St. Francois County Sheriff.  To date, the Electrical Connection has donated $89,000 to the St. Francois County ‘Shop with a Cop’

The Ferguson “Shop with a Cop,” which the Electrical Connection has provided $35,000 in support since 2016, was held on Dec. 21, 2022. It served 27 children. Parents arrived at the Ferguson Police Department at 222 S. Florissant Rd. to pick up gifts for their children from law enforcement.

“Our workforce and contractors live and work in St. Louis and communities throughout eastern Missouri,” noted Frank Jacobs, business manager, IBEW. “It has long been a basic tenet that our service goes beyond the construction and maintenance of electrical and communication technology infrastructure. Programs like ‘Shop with a Cop’ allow us to support the less fortunate in the communities we serve.”   

The Electrical Connection represents 135 IBEW-signatory electrical contractors and more than 5,000 highly skilled IBEW electricians and communication technicians.  Members of the Electrical Connection provide safe and reliable electrical construction, maintenance, repair and replacement services across Missouri, the nation and the world.  For more information visit www.electricalconnection.org.

Three-Fourths of Metros Add Jobs in November; Population Growth Rebounds

/

Submitted by the AGC

Construction employment, not seasonally adjusted, rose from November 2021 to November 2022 in 258 (75%) of the 358 metro areas (including divisions of larger metros) for which the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) posts construction employment data, fell in 45 (13%) and was unchanged in 55, according to an analysis AGC released on Wednesday. (BLS reports combined totals for mining, logging, and construction in most metro areas, to avoid disclosing data about industries with few employers. AGC treats the changes as being solely from construction.) Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land again added the most jobs (18,500 construction jobs, 9%), followed by the Dallas-Plano-Irving division (13,500 combined jobs, 9%); Seattle-Bellevue-Everett division (10,400 construction jobs, 10%); and the Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale (9,400 construction jobs, 7%). The largest percentage gain occurred Provo-Orem, Utah (23%, 6,400 combined jobs), followed by gains of 15% each in Anchorage, Alaska (1,400 construction jobs), Kankakee, Ill. (200 combined jobs), Grants Pass, Ore. (200 construction jobs) and Providence-Warwick, R.I. (4,000 construction jobs). The largest numerical and percentage losses again occurred in Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford (-8,500 construction jobs, -10%) and Richmond, Va. (-3,300 combined jobs, -8%), followed by Camden, N.J. (-1,700 combined jobs, -7%).

U.S. population growth between July 1, 2021 and July 1, 2022 rebounded to 0.38% from a record-low 0.16% in the previous 12 months, but growth was limited to fewer states, the Census Bureau reported on Thursday. Population changes over time are a major contributor to demand for numerous types of construction, funding for public construction, and supply of potential construction workers. Net international migration nearly tripled to 1.01 million, which, “coupled with the largest year-over-year increase in total births since 2007, is behind this increase.” Population increased in 32 states and the District of Columbia, compared to 35 states with increases the previous year. Florida’s population grew by 1.9% (416,754 residents and up from 1.1% in 2021) and was, for “the first time since 1957,…the state with the largest percent increase in population.” Florida had the largest increase in growth rate from 2021 and the second-largest numerical gain, after Texas (470,708, 1.6%, up from 1.1%), an AGC analysis showed. Growth accelerated—another indicator of potential demand for construction—in 26 states and D.C. and slowed in 24 states. Among 18 states with population losses, New York had the largest numerical and percentage declines (-180,341, -0.9%). Idaho had the largest slowdown (from 3.0% to 1.8%) but still had the second-fastest growth rate.

Total construction starts fell 18% from October at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, Dodge Construction Network reported on Monday. Nonresidential building starts plunged 25% (including commercial, -33%; institutional, -12%; and manufacturing, -69%). Nonbuilding starts tumbled 21% (highway and bridge, -32%; utility/gas plants up 3%; environmental public works, -7%; and miscellaneous, -30%). Residential starts fell 5% (single-family, -9%, and multifamily, up 1%).

Housing starts (units) in November dipped 0.5% at a seasonally adjusted annual rate from the October rate and 16% y/y, the Census Bureau reported on Tuesday. Single-family starts fell 4.1% for the month and 32% y/y. Multifamily (five or more units) starts climbed 4.8% for the month and 25% y/y. Residential permits slumped 11% for the month and 22% y/y. Single-family permits declined for the ninth-straight month, by 7.1% from October and 30% y/y. Multifamily permits decreased 18% for the month and 11% y/y. There were 915,000 multifamily units under construction in November, the most since 1983, but the drop in permits suggests multifamily construction will shrink once current projects finish.

Two academic studies published this year, discussed in the education newsletter Hechinger Report on September 19, document the value of well-designed career and technical education (CTE), at least in Massachusetts. One study analyzed the earnings of Massachusetts high school students in the first seven years after graduation from either a CTE program or a traditional high school. All 10 CTE programs led to higher earnings each year than what non-CTE students earned. Construction CTE students had the largest increment: $3000 more than traditional grads in the first year and $7700 more after seven years. Another study finds that “the public gains between $56,500 to $113,900 in higher earnings and reduced welfare expenditures for each vocational high school student in Massachusetts. But in Connecticut, the benefits were much smaller—only about $10,000. New Jersey and Delaware run costlier vocational programs and more analysis is needed to see if they are paying off.”

Jeff Limbaugh Elected SIBA President

//

Effective January 1, 2023, Jeff Limbaugh, Limbaugh Construction Co., Inc., Granite City, Illinois was elected as President of the Southern Illinois Builders Association.

Other officers for 2023 are:  First Vice President – Scott Plocher, Plocher Construction Company, Inc., Highland, Illinois; Second Vice President – Richard Boyer, Boyer Fire Protection, St. Louis, Missouri; and Secretary/Treasurer – Matt Fricke, Warning Lites of Southern Illinois, East St. Louis, Illinois.

Three year Directors elected were:  Matt Gardner, Luhr Crosby, L.L.C., Columbia, Illinois; Gregg Korte, Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc., Highland, Illinois; Tom Lavelle, Keller Construction, Inc., Glen Carbon, Illinois; Jason Litteken, Litteken Construction, Breese, Illinois; Dave Murray, Samron Midwest Contracting, Murphysboro, Illinois; Andy Poirot, McCarthy Building Companies, Inc., Collinsville, Illinois; and Scott Harding, SCI Engineering, Inc., O’Fallon, Illinois.

SIBA Staff Members:  Donna Richter, Chief Executive Officer; Jennifer Jung, Executive Secretary; John Holt, Director of Safety and Education; Shari Schutzenhofer, Administrative Assistant; Stephanie Foster, Administrative Assistant; Brittney Harneck, Administrative Assistant; and Tim Adams, Administrative Assistant.

The Southern Illinois Builders Association is a trade association of contractors representing approximately 500 commercial and industrial building, highway and utility construction contractors throughout Southern Illinois.

Input Costs Mixed in November; 38 States Add Jobs

/

Contractors’ input costs were mixed again in November, as decreases in fuel, lumber, steel, and aluminum costs outweighed increased prices for copper, glass, and trucking, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data posted on December 9. The producer price index (PPI) for material and service inputs to new nonresidential construction declined 0.4% for the month. The index rose 10.1% year-over-year (y/y)—markedly more than the 7.1% increase in the consumer price index, the most widely watched measure of inflation. The PPI for inputs to new residential construction slipped 0.2% for the month but increased 9.2% y/y. There were notable one-month declines in PPIs for diesel fuel (-3.4%, but up 60% y/y), lumber and plywood (-3.1% for the month and -5.8% y/y), steel mill products (-3.0% and -27%, respectively), and aluminum mill shapes (-1.9% and -13%). The PPI increased by more than 1% from October for copper and brass mill shapes (5.4% but down 7.8% y/y), flat glass (1.5% for the month and 12% y/y), and truck transportation of freight (1.1% and 11%, respectively). Other items that contributed to the double-digit y/y increase in input costs include architectural coatings (unchanged for the month but up 26% y/y), paving mixtures and blocks (-0.9% and 20%), gypsum building materials (0.4% and 18%), concrete products (0.8% and 14%), insulation materials (-0.2% and 14%), asphalt felts and coatings (0.6% and 12%), and plastic construction products (-0.5% and 11%). In addition, indexes rose at double-digit rates for new, repair, and maintenance work by subcontractors: roofing contractors (0 and 21%), plumbing (0.3% and 15%), electrical (0.1% and 14%), and concrete contractors (0.3% and 11%). The PPI for new nonresidential building construction—a measure of the price that contractors say they would bid to build a fixed set of buildings—rose 0.2% for the month and 19.8% y/y. AGC posted tables of construction PPIs. The December edition of AGC’s Construction Inflation Alert discusses materials costs (through October), supply chain, and labor availability challenges for contractors.

Seasonally adjusted construction employment rose from October to November in 38 states, declined in eight states, and was flat in four states and the District of Columbia, according to AGC’s analysis of data BLS posted today. Florida added the most construction jobs over the month (5,400, 0.9%), followed by Ohio (4,800, 2.0%), Louisiana (3,400, 2.7%), and Michigan (3,300, 1.8%). Rhode Island had the largest percentage gain (3.6%, 800 jobs), followed by Nebraska (3.3%, 2,000), Louisiana, Ohio, and Vermont (2.0%, 300). Texas lost the most jobs in November (-3,900, -0.5%), followed by Colorado (-3,400, -1.8%), Minnesota (-1,300, -1.8%), and South Carolina (-700, -0.7%). Colorado and Minnesota had the largest percentage loss, followed by New Mexico (-0.7%, -400) and South Carolina. Compared to November 2021, construction employment last month was higher in 42 states and lower in eight states and D.C. California added the most jobs y/y (37,200, 4.2%), followed by Texas (29,200, 3.9%) and Florida (22,600, 3.9%). The top percentage gains were in North Dakota (16%, 4,000 jobs), Rhode Island (13%, 2,700), and Utah (12%, 14,500). South Carolina lost the largest number and percentage of construction jobs y/y (-4,700, -4.5%), followed by New Jersey (-4,600, -2.9%). (For D.C., Delaware, and Hawaii, which have few mining or logging jobs, BLS posts combined totals with construction; AGC treats the changes as all from construction.)

The value of construction starts in current dollars (i.e., not inflation-adjusted) in November plunged 18% y/y, data firm ConstructConnect reported today. Nonresidential building starts slumped 17% y/y, not seasonally adjusted, with institutional starts up 7.0%, industrial (manufacturing) starts down 9.9%, and commercial starts down 40%. Engineering (civil) starts climbed 5.8% y/y, with roads up 4.5%, water/sewage up 14%, bridges down 21%, dams/marine down 22%, power and miscellaneous civil up 46%, and airports up 42%. Residential starts plummeted 28% y/y, with single-family down 20% and apartments down 45%.

The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) registered a score of 46.6 in November, down from 47.7 in October and the second-straight reading below 50 since January 2021, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported on Wednesday. AIA calls the index “a leading economic indicator that leads nonresidential construction activity by approximately 9-12 months.” The ABI is derived from the share of responding architecture firms that report a gain in billings over the previous month less the share reporting a decline in billings, presented on a 0-to-100 scale. Any score below 50 means more firms reported decreased billings than increased billings. Readings for practice specialties (based on three-month averages) varied: mixed practice, 51.5 (up from 51.4 in October); institutional, 47.7 (down from 51.5); residential (mainly multifamily), 46.1 (down from 46.3); and commercial/industrial, 44.2 (down from 45.4).

“Year-to-date [YTD], ending in October, the total number of multifamily permits issued nationwide reached 575,671,” 17% more than in January-October 2021,” the National Association of Home Builders posted today, based on Census Bureau data. “Between October 2021 YTD and October 2022 YTD, 39 states and the District of Columbia recorded growth, while 11 states recorded a decline in multifamily permits. Georgia led the way with a sharp rise (168.7%) in multifamily permits from 9,237 to 24,818 while Delaware had the largest decline of 61.5% from 968 to 373.”