One more to go!
I have one more article to write before I turn my pen over to the next President of MCAA. Before I do that, I have to share more with you concerning our industry. I believe this is an exciting time as we prepare for the future. Some may be saying, “I am just trying to survive,” and I know many of us are doing that very thing. Even at that, we are surviving the future!
Today in Dallas, NCMA and their team of champions are meeting concerning the “Check-off Program” for the block industry. This is huge for our success as contractors and for the entire industry. The proposal is asking for $.01 (one cent) per block. This money will be used to promote our industry and grow it, so we can all have more work at a profitable margin. I ask each of us, as contractors, to call on our block suppliers and let them know; it is important to all of us for them to support this effort. This can be the turnaround for us to regain the market share we have lost during the last few years.
MCAA also is preparing as an association for the future. The MCAA membership has taken steps to add a new membership classification. This will be for residential mason contractors. We believe this is the right association to represent the entire industry, rather than just commercial. One of our government agencies decided, after hundreds of years, that building a wood fireplace is being done incorrectly, and is a cause of global warming. I want to go on record as saying this is crazy, but they didn’t ask me.
The EPA folks were doing all they could to make it almost impossible to build a wood-burning fireplace. MCAA stepped in and went to work, and convinced the EPA to allow us to set up a certification program on how to build fireplaces. Even that sounds crazy, but I promise you, it is better than a government agency telling us how to do it – they have never built one. It was a wakeup call to MCAA, and it made us realize we must represent all mason contractors, rather than just the commercial contractor. Along with the new membership classification, we currently are working on the fireplace certification program and should have it ready in early-2012.
When you receive this, I hope you are getting ready to go to Vegas for the MCAA Convention and the World of Concrete/Masonry. I believe it is shaping up to be one of the best conventions we have ever had. Great educational programs, a great show, networking, association businesses, fun, and my opportunity to say “thank you and goodbye!”
That is only as MCAA President, because I will always be involved in MCAA as long as I remain in business. Until then, this old cowboy says, “Each of you shoot for the moon, and even if you miss, you will land among the stars.”
About the Author
Mackie Bounds is Owner of Brazos Masonry, Inc., in Waco, Texas, and has served as Treasurer, Secretary, Vice President and President of the MCAA. In 1989, Bounds started Brazos Masonry, and his first act of business was to join MCAA. He has always been active in the masonry industry. He became the first subcontractor to be elected to the Board of Directors of the Central Texas AGC and subsequently was elected to the National AGC Board of Directors. In 1995, he was elected as the first President of the Central Texas Mason Contractors Association. Bounds spent eight years on the MCAA Executive Board, including two years as President from 2010-2012 and was the recipient of the 2013 C. DeWitt Brown Leadman Award.