MCAA Regional Report, Region H
Presented at the 2018 MCAA Convention
California - Todd Williams
Hawaii - No State Chair
Nevada - No State Chair
- 129 CA total bricklayer apprentices
- 95 bricklayer union apprentices
- 55 apprentices So Cal. 84 inclusive of all related trades (bricklayer, marble, refractory, pointer/cleaners/caulkers)
- 40 apprentices Nor Cal. 188 inclusive of all related trades (bricklayer, terrazzo, marble, pointer/cleaners/caulkers)
- 34 bricklayer open shop apprentices
- 8 other industry supported high school and adult apprentice programs
- 6 high school training programs
- 2 adult apprentice programs run by Masonry Industry Training Association (MITA)
CaliforniaCalifornia added the most construction jobs in the country (48,400 jobs, 6.2 percent) between November 2016 and November 2017, according to American General Contractors of America (AGC) 12/22/17 construction employment report, and the California Department of Finance forecasts construction wages to increase approximately 3.5% in each of the next three years.
Residential will outpace commercial projects with office and retail construction expected to slow while industrial and multifamily will continue growth. The UCLA Anderson’s Summer/Fall 2017 Forecast goes on to say that California’s job and income gains combined with a severe housing shortage is driving the residential market.
While the implications of the new federal tax plan are eagerly awaited, they offer a mixed bag of economic outcomes with positivity on the immediate horizon but both building and employment projected to decline by the end of 2019. Availability of a skilled trade workforce remains a top priority with Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) analysts summarizing the situation as “…a stressed construction labor market.”
Masonry Marketing Activities
CaliforniaThe Concrete Masonry Association of California and Nevada (CMACN) continues to reward exceptional masonry projects every odd-numbered year (2017, 2015, etc.) at their Concrete Masonry Design Awards held in September.
- CMACN also has a multi-platform marketing campaign, “WHY MASONRY”, promoting the use of CMU via website, publication ads, and brochures.
- CMACN distributes 15,000 copies quarterly of “Profiles in Masonry” featuring award winning projects to architects and other design professionals in CA and NV.
- CMACN distributes over 5,900 copies of “Masonry Chronicles” featuring technical notes and building code updates to engineers statewide.
CaliforniaWood Looking to go to New Heights
- A report by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) shows a requested increase in height of certain new “heavy timber” construction from the traditional 4-5 stories to 9 stories to be considered for 2021 I-Codes.
997 bills reached the Governor’s desk in the first half of the 2017-18 legislative session. He vetoed about 5% of them. A highlight of new laws going into effect January 1, 2018 and some lingering initiatives is as follows:
- AB 92 extends until 2023 the provision allowing awarding bodies to exceed 5% retention on a public project if that project is deemed to be “substantially complex.”
- AB 1223 helps subcontractors determine whether state agencies have paid a general contractor for subcontractors’ work by requiring state agencies with a Web site to post when they paid, how much they paid, on which project, and to whom so that subcontractors may demand timely payment.
- SB 418 caps Skilled and Trained Workforce graduation percentage requirement at 30% (vs. 60%) for a number of occupations including: bricklayer, marble mason, stone mason, terrazzo worker or finisher. “Skilled and trained workforce” means ALL workers are either “skilled journeypersons” or apprentices registered in a state-approved apprenticeship program.
The Mason Contractors Association of California (MCAC) conducted silica exposure testing for the task of mortar mixing in 2017. Those test results demonstrated that the task of mortar mixing can be below the PEL of 50 ug/m3 and, in most cases, is below the Action Level of 25 ug/m3. MCAC plans to use the results in rulemaking efforts with Cal/OSHA.
Cal/OSHA penalties increased from a maximum of $7,000 to $12,471 for general violations. The new minimum penalty for repeat and willful violations is $8,908 and the maximum goes from $70,000 to $124,709. Penalties are permitted to increase annually based on the Consumer Price Index.
About the Author
Dennis Withsosky is the President of New Dimension Masonry, Inc. He has served as MCAA Region H Vice President.