Membership dues paid to the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) is the largest source of funding that we have. Its importance cannot be understated…it's a vital part of the association that enables us to continue to fight for our industry on behalf of all mason contractors. Our involvement on all fronts (from regulatory reform to education and training) continues to ensure the survivability and viability of our industry for generations to come. Below is a list of some of our recent successes supported by MCAA Membership dollars followed by a brief outlook for the year ahead.
The MCAA has taken a leadership role in the CISC (Construction Industry Safety Coalition) with regard to the silica rule. The MCAA has testified before OSHA on the proposed rule, and just this year testified before OMB regarding the proposed rules impact on our industry. The MCAA has taken a huge step and is challenging the rule with OSHA in Federal Courts by filing an appeal in April of this year. The final rule did include a provision that separated our construction from general industry, which is something the MCAA pushed for during testimony. This separation did help in the final rule as well as with an adjustment to table 1.
BIM Software Development
Phase II of the BIM Software Development program is well on its way. In March 2016, BIM masonry plug-ins for Revit were released for free to designers online. These plug-ins will make utilizing masonry in BIM much easier and quicker. This is an exciting step forward in the process and will offer huge opportunities for contractors. We are in year four of a five-year process and are excited to see the end result.
New Learning Experiences for Contractors
The MCAA has once again bulked up our webinar series and continues to make the program free for the 2016 season. Contractors can attend and allow everyone in their company access to the recorded events 24/7. Not all webinars are free to non-members, but nearly all are free to members.
New Member Benefits
In 2015-16, new member benefits were rolled out and added to the MCAA’s Perks program. New programs like Call A Doctor Plus, Lifelock and Priceline have been added, all with the purpose of saving members dollars on products and services they already use. A survey of members was done and those utilizing the program saved an average of $10,000 per company per year with all the different MCAA Perks programs. If you are not utilizing them yet, contact the MCAA office or visit www.masoncontractors.org/perks to get your dollars back today. Membership does really pay you back.
Sprint cellphone service did a great promotion and still offers tremendous benefits in our program. Beeline Safety Products has expanded their offerings and has worked with us to make our members aware of the quality products they offer and the great pricing they offer. This is a program that again can save you a ton of dollars you have to invest in safety equipment. Don’t pay more than you have to, by with the power of our group.
The MCAA is in our second year of offering CMD Insight. Our members can now purchase this “Intelligent Lead Source” program at a heavily discounted price. This system is an all-new way to uncover your best project opportunities. Flexible search options and easy to use filters give you instant access to a database with hundreds of thousands of projects, as well as plans, specifications, key players, contact information and even email addresses. You’ll have everything you need to find, bid, win and keep a steady pipeline of new work.
A Look to the Year Ahead
The MCAA will continue to push for legislation that would defund the enforcement of the new rule. This is a very difficult push, as President Obama would have to sign this into law and override his own agency. The MCAA is also working to minimize the impact a new rule would have in case the legislative side of things do not work in our favor. The MCAA has appealed the rule in the Federal Courts and hopes to negotiate a more favorable rule for contractors. Our work during the proposed rule process has created a better end result for the final rule, and we hope to get an even better rule from our appeal.
Development of Short Certifications
We expect to roll out several new certification opportunities this year. These will be courses contractors and employees can take to show proficiency at the topic. One currently on the schedule is Storm Shelter certification. It will be a short series of 4-5 videos on how to properly build a storm shelter. This is being done to help masonry reclaim market share and also to meet new requirements in the building safe room code. In addition, a grouting certification will also be developed as well as others. Look for more on these as we move through the year.
The MCAA continues to get young people excited about career opportunities in the masonry industry. This year, many of our committees will be working on this issue. If this issue or any other issues are of interest to you, and you would like to join one of our many committees, contact us at our office.
MCAA Smart Phone App
We are excited to announce a MCAA smart phone app will be available later this year. This app will be available for free download at your app store for both iPhones and Android phones later this year. This will help keep MCAA resources at your fingertips when you are away from your office.
As the year develops there will be undoubtedly more exciting opportunities for our association to participate in. We need your continued support to maximize our opportunities and serve the needs of our industry.