Blog

Viewing: All Entries
Page
of 6

Website offers resource for prevailing wage support Posted by on

In California, the ABC has been pushing cities to drop prevailing wage requirements on municipally funded jobs. In response to this push, a web-based resource was created for elected officials, UBC members and the public, illustrating the benefits of prevailing wage. The website - SmartCitiesPrevail.org - educates the public, news media and decision makers within city governments about how prevailing wages paid on public projects benefit Californians by preserving quality local jobs for working families.

The site contains some great resources including statistics, facts/myths about prevailing wage, and links to research and case studies collected from cities and states that have kept or eliminated prevailing wage. The site also offers useful tools and downloads, including a prevailing wage fact sheet.

Visit SmartCitiesPrevail.org to learn more!

Facebook users can also follow the group online here.





Walter A. Furman Co., Architectural Woodwork | A UNION shop Posted by on



Architectural millwork is a key element of any building project. When done right, it can really open eyes. At Walter A. Furman Company, craftsmanship and commitment are key, as union carpenters and company management carry on a long-standing company tradition of exceeding client expectations. Take a look behind the scenes to see how they bring it all together.





2011 NERCC Scholarship Opportunity Posted by on

The Scholarship Sub-Committee of the New England Regional Council of Carpenters has established the guidelines for the eligibility, application, and awarding of scholarships for 2011.

The official guidelines and application can be found here.

Applicants should submit the completed essay, application form and most recent transcript of grades by 5:00 p.m. on April 15, 2011 to NERCC Scholarship, ATTN: Malerie Anderson, 750 Dorchester Ave., Boston, MA 02125.

Applications received after April 15, 2011 will be ineligible.

To eliminate bias, the scholarship committee is blind to the identity of the applicant. Essays are numerically coded to prevent any reader from having knowledge of the writer. Winners of the top two prizes will be asked to read their essays at the June 2011 delegate meeting. Persons awarded first or second place in a prior year are ineligible for first or second place in subsequent years.


TAGS: Members, Nercc



NERCC uses high efficiency equipment, receives rebate Posted by on

The New England Regional Council of Carpenters (NERCC) recently received a rebate check in the amount of $103,880 from NSTAR Electric. The rebate was part of NSTAR??s Construction Solutions Program, which provides incentives for purchasing and installing high-efficiency equipment for us in commercial and industrial operations.

Before breaking ground at the NERCC??s new headquarters, the Carpenters Center, various rebate and incentive programs were examined as a means to not only cut costs, but improve overall efficiency over the lifetime of the building. NSTAR??s Construction Solutions Program was the best fit in terms of the lighting line and dealt specifically with the purchase of light fixtures and switches throughout the building.

In order to qualify for the program, certain terms and conditions had to be met. The project had to be completed in one year, in this case by May 11, 2010; the application had to be submitted with all paid invoices for material costs and labor; and a post installation verification had to be completed, verifying that the equipment was installed and consistent with sound engineering practices. The application had to be received and approved by NSTAR before construction began.

The lighting at the Carpenters Center has individual controls every regularly occupied space. Private and shared offices have two-level occupancy sensors, individual workstations have flexible, integrally-switched task lights, and classroom/conference spaces have multiple levels of switch controls to allow for adjustment of lighting levels in accordance with the activity happening in the space. By selecting incandescent lights with motion sensors and automatic shut off, the Carpenters Union hoped to save over 30% off of total annual consumption.

As part of its building plan, the Carpenters Union utilized its own Commissioning Study as an extra review process in the design and purchase of various elements throughout the building, including the lighting. This separate layer of review assured the Carpenters Union that the organization is given some kind of refund or equivalent in its operation on a daily basis, that true savings would be realized over the lifetime of the building.

Substantial completion of the project happened in January 2010, well ahead of the May deadline as set by the rebate parameters. With the deadline met and the application otherwise complete, the final step was to pass the post installation verification, during which a throughout audit of the system took place, with every fixture examined throughout the building. After passing the inspection, the rebate check was issued to NERCC.

The lighting line for the Carpenters Center, installed by union contractor McDonald Electric, was $217,000. After passing the final inspection, the NERCC was issued a check in the amount of $103,880. At the time the check was issued, representatives from the Carpenters Union were told that the check was one of the largest to be issued by NSTAR under this program.

??We have training programs for our members to learn the fundamentals of Green Building and prepare for LEED AP certification, however it??s very difficult to preach about the virtues of these practices if we??re not doing it ourselves at home,?? notes David Dow, NECMLP Special Projects and Facilities.

??Here at the Carpenters Center we now have a great example of how a building can be Green and efficient. The rewards and benefits of good planning and good design will be realized well beyond this onetime rebate payment and will be seen over the lifetime of the building.??





Carpenters Center receives Project of the Year Award from the Construction Institute Posted by on


(l-r) Marshall Felix- Project Superintendant, Suffolk Construction;
David Dow- NERCC Special Projects; Jeff Wade- Principal, ADD,
Inc.; Liviu Marza, Associate Principal, ADD, Inc.

The Carpenters Center has been recognized by the Construction Institute as a winner of their Pride in Construction Project of the Year award. Yesterday, The Construction Institute (TCI) presented the Pride in Construction Project of the Year Awards and the Volpe-Eagan Construction Safety Awards at their annual meeting and holiday luncheon.

The Construction Institute??s Pride in Construction Project of the Year Awards recognize projects that have been constructed in Massachusetts using union contractors and workers that have had a positive impact on the construction industry, the community, and the clients The Construction Institute serves. Entries submitted for Project of the Year were judged on quality of construction, design innovations, impact on the community, safety achievements, labor-Management relations and customer satisfaction

TCI awarded three Pride in Construction Project of the Year Awards recognizing The Carpenters Center (private sector project), the Fall River Justice Center (state public sector project) and the Haystack Ultra-Wideband Satellite Imaging Radar Antenna (federal public sector project).

The Carpenters Center was recognized for being an adaptive re-use of the property, by renovating and converting the existing building, which was in a state of disrepair and an eyesore for the community, into an appropriately-designed, mixed-use building. The Carpenters Union worked very closely with the surrounding community members to ensure that the design of the building complimented the neighborhood??s architectural character. The building stands as a symbol of pride and tradition of the Carpenters Union and its membership.

David Dow, NERCC Special Projects, accepted the award on the behalf of the Carpenters Union. Dow recognized and thanked the membership involved in the construction of the facility as well as the NERCC staff who ??had a vision and saw that vision through?? in the planning, design and execution of the project. He also acknowledged the project architecture firm ADD, Inc. and Construction Manager Suffolk Construction.

Following the Project of the Year Awards, two individuals were recognized as recipients of the Volpe-Eagan Safety Award. Receiving the safety awards were George Allen, Principal and Treasurer of signatory contractor Archer Corporation, and Trustee of the Boston Carpenters Apprenticeship and Training Fund and with Jamie Merloni, Training Director for the New England Laborers?? Training Trust Fund.


George Allen, recipient of the Volpe-Eagan
Safety Award stands with David Dow, who
accepted the Project of the Year Award on
behalf of the Carpenters Union.

The safety awards are conferred in honor of Patrick Volpe and Edward F. Eagan, both pioneers in promoting health and safety in the construction industry. Volpe was Safety Director for Volpe Construction and Chairman of Bulletin 12, a former state committee charged with revising the Commonwealth's occupational safety and health regulations. Eagan was a member of IBEW Local 103, had over twenty years of service with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and was highly regarded by both labor and management for his tireless dedication to safeguarding the lives and health of workers. Because of his outstanding contributions to safety and health in the construction industry, Eagan received the Volpe Safety Award in 1979.

TCI has continued this tradition with the hope that the awards program will encourage other individuals to emulate honorees by their dedication to safeguarding the lives and health of union construction workers.

George Allen is the Co-Founder and Treasurer of Archer Corporation, a company known for providing quality interior construction services, with an emphasis on installation. Located in Malden, Archer Corporation is the largest company of its kind in the greater Boston area. Archer Corporation combines "new world" technology with "old world" craftsmanship working for some of the most prestigious owners in the area.

Allen has overseen his company??s exemplary safety program for 40 years and holds several OSHA instructor certifications. But his resolute dedication to safety excellence does not end with Archer Corporation. As a trustee of the Boston Carpenters Apprenticeship & Training Fund (BCATF), he is an avid promoter of safety training programs for all Boston area carpenter apprentices and journeypersons and is responsible for implementing mandatory safety training for all BCATF apprentices.

Allen has demonstrated his commitment to advancing excellence in the construction industry beyond safety and health through his active participation in other industry organizations as well. He serves as President of the Building Trades Employers Association, is a Director for the Associated Subcontractors of Massachusetts and a Trustee of the Massachusetts Construction Advancement Program, and is a former Director of the Massachusetts Building Congress.

The Construction Institute (TCI) is a partnership comprised of building trades unions, union contractors, contractor associations, industry professionals, and 75,000 skilled union crafts men and women, dedicated to being the premier provider of construction services in Massachusetts. TCI promotes quality construction and a skilled construction workforce for the benefit of the Massachusetts construction industry, the local communities and the customers it serves.For additioanl information about all the award recipients click here.





Grant Writer Position Available Posted by on

The Massachusetts Carpenters and Apprenticeship Fund is hiring a full time Grant Writer who will work on behalf of the Massachusetts, Boston, and New England Carpenters Apprenticeship and Training Funds.

Job Location: Millbury, MA, United States
Salary: Commensurate with experience

Job Description
1. Write applications for federal, state local and private grant-funding opportunities according to organization??s strategic priorities.
2. Work with outside grant writing consultants as necessary.
3. Research to create a database of grant opportunities that match organization??s priorities.
4. Work with grant team to prioritize opportunities and map out strategy for each fiscal year and beyond.
5. Track federal and state legislation as appropriate to ensure organization is aware of potential future funding opportunities.
6. Identify opportunities for program growth which could be grant-funded.
7. Coordinate weekly (or more frequent) grant team meetings.
8. Assign workload and task to each member of grant team if team determines organization should pursue grant; hold team members to pre-established deadlines. Coordinate development of project narratives and project budgets with appropriate teams members and grant team overall.
9. Manage grant submission, subsequent reporting, and maintenance of grant data to satisfy funders?? needs.
10. Manage grant library for future reference.
11. Performs other duties as assigned.

Qualifications:
? 3-5 years experience writing training related grants.
? Experience working with outside consultants writing grants.
? Excellent team building skills, especially with multi-disciplinary teams.
? Strong written and verbal communication skills.
? Ability to coordinate overlapping projects and deadlines required.
? Excellent command of the English language.
? Strong analytical skills and experience with all Microsoft Office Suite applications and databases required.
? Portfolio of written work and official college transcript(s) will be required from finalists.

Reports To:
Director Massachusetts Carpenters Apprenticeship & Training Fund

Salary:
Hiring salary commensurate with education and experience

Work Schedule:
Non-standard, 40 hours per week

Licenses, Tools and Equipment:
Ability to use personal computer systems and accompanying software. Must have access to and use of own transportation.

To Apply:

*Please mail resume, cover letter and salary requirements to Massachusetts Carpenters Apprenticeship & Training Fund, 350 Fordham Rd, STE 201, Wilmington, MA 01887.

*The Massachusetts Carpenters Apprenticeship & Training Fund is an Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action Employer and is committed to attracting a wide range of diverse candidates.

*NO Email or Fax applications will be accepted.

Application Deadline: January 3, 2010

About the New England Carpenters Union Training Funds: The New England Carpenters Apprenticeship & Training Funds offers a four-year apprenticeship program to thoroughly develop the talents and skills of up-and-coming carpenters. The programs are a combination of classroom learning and job site employment.

The Carpenters Union also offers apprentices and journeymen a comprehensive Skills Training Enhancement Program (STEP) providing hands-on evening and weekend classes in a wide range of carpentry skills, general knowledge, certification, and safety. These training programs are designed to advance members?? careers and keep their skills current as the construction industry changes.




NERCC uses high efficiency equipment, receives rebate Posted by on

The New England Regional Council of Carpenters (NERCC) recently received a rebate check in the amount of $103,880 from NSTAR Electric. The rebate was part of NSTAR??s Construction Solutions Program, which provides incentives for purchasing and installing high-efficiency equipment for us in commercial and industrial operations.

Before breaking ground at the NERCC??s new headquarters, the Carpenters Center, various rebate and incentive programs were examined as a means to not only cut costs, but improve overall efficiency over the lifetime of the building. NSTAR??s Construction Solutions Program was the best fit in terms of the lighting line and dealt specifically with the purchase of light fixtures and switches throughout the building.

In order to qualify for the program, certain terms and conditions had to be met. The project had to be completed in one year, in this case by May 11, 2010; the application had to be submitted with all paid invoices for material costs and labor; and a post installation verification had to be completed, verifying that the equipment was installed and consistent with sound engineering practices. The application had to be received and approved by NSTAR before construction began.

The lighting at the Carpenters Center has individual controls every regularly occupied space. Private and shared offices have two-level occupancy sensors, individual workstations have flexible, integrally-switched task lights, and classroom/conference spaces have multiple levels of switch controls to allow for adjustment of lighting levels in accordance with the activity happening in the space. By selecting incandescent lights with motion sensors and automatic shut off, the Carpenters Union hoped to save over 30% off of total annual consumption.

As part of its building plan, the Carpenters Union utilized its own Commissioning Study as an extra review process in the design and purchase of various elements throughout the building, including the lighting. This separate layer of review assured the Carpenters Union that the organization is given some kind of refund or equivalent in its operation on a daily basis, that true savings would be realized over the lifetime of the building.

Substantial completion of the project happened in January 2010, well ahead of the May deadline as set by the rebate parameters. With the deadline met and the application otherwise complete, the final step was to pass the post installation verification, during which a throughout audit of the system took place, with every fixture examined throughout the building. After passing the inspection, the rebate check was issued to NERCC.

The lighting line for the Carpenters Center, installed by union contractor McDonald Electric, was $217,000. After passing the final inspection, the NERCC was issued a check in the amount of $103,880. At the time the check was issued, representatives from the Carpenters Union were told that the check was one of the largest to be issued by NSTAR under this program.

??We have training programs for our members to learn the fundamentals of Green Building and prepare for LEED AP certification, however it??s very difficult to preach about the virtues of these practices if we??re not doing it ourselves at home,?? notes David Dow, NECMLP Special Projects and Facilities.

??Here at the Carpenters Center we now have a great example of how a building can be Green and efficient. The rewards and benefits of good planning and good design will be realized well beyond this onetime rebate payment and will be seen over the lifetime of the building.??





4 Star now in trouble in Mass Posted by on

With a Stop Work order in place against them in Connecticut since December 3, 4 Star Drywall ran into more trouble today, when the Department of Industrial Accidents issued a Stop Work order against them in Massachusetts.

As in Connecticut, the Stop Work order was issued when authorities found out the company was performing drywall work without having workers compensation insurance in place. Today's order was issued at the future site of a Walgreen's in Somerset, where the company is believed to have had seven carpenters working. PM Construction, based in Maine, is the general contractor on the project. The Connecticut order is in place on a CVS site in Guilford, where 4 Star was hired by TRB Development.





NH contractors STOPped in CT Posted by on

Two contractors working on a CVS store in Guilford, Connecticut were issued STOP WORK orders on December 3 by the Connecticut Department of Labor because they did not have workers' compensation coverage in place for their employees. Those Stop Work orders remain in place.

4 Star Drywall of Manchester, New Hampshire and MPC Construction of New Ipswich, New Hampshire were hired by general contractors TRB Development, of Hooksett, New Hampshire.
The Stop Work orders were issued after a site visit by the DOL.

4 Star had at least 6 employees working on site without coverage. The company is responsible for drywall and ceiling work on the project.

It is unclear how many workers were employed by MPC on the project or what type of work they were doing. MPC generally does concrete work but also has a drywall division. The concrete work on the store was completed before the Stop Work orders were issued.





Walmart to look at NERCC contractors Posted by on

Eight senior representatives managing renovation and construction of Walmart and Sam's Club stores came to the Carpenters Center last week to talk to over fifty union contractors about future building projects in New England. The retail giant reviewed their internal contractor prequalification process and talked in general terms about upcoming projects in a two-hour meeting. The developing relationship is the result of coordination between the New England Regional Council of Carpenters and the New Jersey State Council of Carpenters, which has had significant success having Walmart stores build union there.

"Walmart is a huge company that has taken some hits about how they do business," said Mark Erlich, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of NERCC. "As a result, they appear to be focused on eliminating future problems including those that might occur during construction. They have a comprehensive prequalification process for general contractors and they've brought in serious people from the industry and regulatory agencies to help them become compliant with the law."

The company plans to build more than 150 new stores in the next year and doesn't want any store to go more than 5-7 years without being renovated.

For NERCC, the meeting highlighted the business development role the union plays for contractors: "Some union contractors only see us as a supplier of labor, affordable benefits and craft training," Erlich said. "We also view the relationship as a partnership in which we can help them generate business and, therefore, jobs for our members."






Health Fair Cancelled Posted by on

The Health Fair sponsored by the New England Carpenters Health Benefits Funds scheduled for December 11 at the Carpenters Center has been canceled.




Its time to step up the 50% annuity withdrawal rul... Posted by on

Its time to step up the 50% annuity withdrawal rules. Members are taking whatever hours they can right now whther its 16 hours a week or whatever the case is. Its nnot right to say hey you worked 16 hours 8 weeks ago so we cant help you out. loans are no good to people who arent working so the 50% rule is the only hope for alot of members. Stop putting all these restrictions on this and help the members who need it. remember we are supposed to be a brotherhood and alot of members arent feeling that brotherly love. Do whatever it takes to help.Do a case to case basis if need be. Its now 160 hours in 12 months but cant work the first month or last 3 of the 12 month period. Why? what about the people that are taking these short weeks in hopes they might get insurance again sometime? Since when is it the policy of this union to say stay home from work and then we'll help. I was told when i was an apprentice to never turn down work because you never know when its going to come again, now im being told i worked 16 hours 8 weeks ago so we cant help. STOP the nonsense and start helping each other. Stop all these lil restrictions and months and this and that. just take a little look at someones work history and help them.




You can be a famous carpenter... Posted by on

We got a call today from Screaming Flea Productions, a company out of Seattle that's looking for a carpenter for the A&E show "Sell This House." If you don't look like Brad Pitt, that's great. They want a regular, down-to-earth looking carpenter that's good at what they do. They're looking to cast someone in December and then fly them to Texas to shot a test episode in January. Here are the details they sent along.

Casting Call:
Sex: Male
Age: 30 ?C 50
We??re looking for a master craftsman to mix it up with our designer. Somebody confident, good at his job, and with an attitude. Very outspoken. Somebody who is good with people ?C he will be talking our homeowners through the projects.

Here??s a link to the Sell This House website: http://www.aetv.com/sell-this-house/index.jsp

We??re shooting the pilot in mid-January and will need to have it cast by the end of the December. Any of your guys that are interested can contact me at the info below.

FYI ?C I also contacted the Union in Chicago, so no pressure New England!

LEE CHRISTOFFERSON
Executive Producer
lee@sfpseattle.com
Screaming Flea Productions
5950 6th Ave. South, Suite 109
Seattle, WA 98108
(206) 763-3383x202
(206) 412-3660.cell
www.sfpseattle.com




Congratulations Brian. You are a tribute to Brothe... Posted by on

Congratulations Brian. You are a tribute to Brotherhood of carpenters, your family and friends as well as your alma mater Northeast Metro Tech. I remember you as a hard working, dedicated student who would not anything stand in your way to becoming the outstanding person yoou are today. I fondly recall you rallying your classmates and informing them of the benefits as a Union Carpenter. Now can observe as you continue to grow and mature as a member of Carpenters Local 218.

Your Teacher and Friend,

Mr. Villandry (Mr. V)




I'm not surprised. I worked for Mayo at an out... Posted by on

I'm not surprised. I worked for Mayo at an out-of-state location in 2008 and they were all about quick fixes, patch jobs, and little follow-through. They're the reason I don't trust corporate property management companies.




Connearny is carpenter, valedictorian Posted by on

Congratulations are due to Brother Brian Connearny, who was selected by instructors at the Boston Labor Guild as the valedictorian for the Fall 2010 class. Brian's a member of Carpenters Local 218 and the son and grandson of union carpenters from Local 67.

Connearney spoke at the graduation ceremony this week about the service his father and grandfather gave to the United Brotherhood and explained the significance of elements of the UBC crest.

The graduating class included six other union carpenters who participated in Guild programs. The Boston Labor Guild has been offering classes and services to foster greater communication and cooperation between labor and management since the 1940s. Local 275 Business Agent Kevin Kelley is currently the President of the Labor Guild.




Carpenters Center to host health fair Posted by on

The New England Carpenters Health Benefit Fund will be holding a comprehensive health and wellness fair for members at the Carpenters Center Saturday, December 11 from 10am-2pm. Presented in conjunction with Blue Cross-Blue Shield, the event will feature:

Flu Shot Clinic
Blood Pressure Reading
Cholesterol Screening
Diabetes Screening + Workshop
Dermatology Analysis
Vision Exams
Two Massage Chairs
Smoking Cessation Consultation
Stress Management & Nutrition Workshops

The event will also feature give-aways and raffled prizes, including a flat screen television. To register for the event, contact Blue Cross-Blue Shield at 800.262.2583.




Carpenters at Build Boston Posted by on



Join us this week as nationally and internationally recognized industry leaders team up with the Northeast??s best to share their expertise in over 150 workshops, sessions, symposiums and tours at the 26th annual Build Boston, November 17-19, 2010.

The Carpenters Union is exhibiting at this year??s event in booth number 952.

Build Boston is the Northeast??s premier architecture and building event. Representatives from the Carpenters will be on hand at the booth to speak with architects, engineers, contractors, interior designers, and other industry professionals participating in the three day event.

Build Boston is a regional convention put on by the Boston Society of Architects. The event features nationally recognized industry leaders and is New England??s largest annual convention and tradeshow for the design and construction industry. For more information visit www.BuildBoston.com.

Don??t forget to stop by and visit the Carpenters Union at booth #952.


TAGS: Outreach



FOX 25 hits employers who exploit Posted by on

Mike Beaudet of the FOX 25 Boston's Investigative Team reported last night on employers who hire and exploit immigrant workers with little or no regard for getting caught or punished. (story embedded below)

The story includes the tale of drywall carpenters employed Jared Stevens and Elite Drywall to perform work on a new Wicked Pizza location at the Legacy Place Mall in Dedham. NERCC Organizers confronted Stevens about the fact that his employees were owed $15,000 in wages for work they had performed at Wicked Pizza and another job in New Hampshire. The workers eventually went on strike, a story that was the focus of this NERCC video last month.

In the FOX piece, Jessica Vaughan with the Center for Immigration Studies said government efforts to crack down on employers hiring and exploiting illegal immigrants has not been enough of a deterrent so far.

??Essentially what happens is these workers pretend to be legal and the employers pretend to believe them. And that's how everybody is able to keep the system going. ??It is easy for them to get away with it because there are no penalties. There's no deterrents for them. In most cases, what they're facing is a slap on the wrist or a warning," she said.

Bruce Foucart, ICE Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in New England, told Beaudet that focusing on employers rather than individual workers would have a greater impact, but claimed budget issues and the newness of the enforcement efforts has limited their success. He admits the problem exists and the bad guys are the ones making out.

??It exists out there and the bottom line with that is the employers are benefiting. They're benefiting if they have an illegal workforce," Foucart said. "Employers are getting away with it obviously and given limited resources we're doing the best we can."

After years of trying to tackle the problem by targeting immigrant workers, several years ago the New England Regional Council of Carpenters changed their focus in a way that is now being mirrored by enforcement agencies. Since the union began helping immigrant workers who are not paid properly, they are more likely to blow the whistle on employers who win work over honest union contractors by cheating.

The union has also found it more beneficial to bring public shame to contractors and those who employ them, including owners who go out of their way to claim they don't know what's involved in lowball bids. Unlike immigrant workers and some subcontractors, they can't as easily disappear from the jobsites, or the communities in which they do business.





Greeley being honored tonight Posted by on

Paul Greeley, the Director of the Carpenters Assistance Program (CAP) is being honored tonight by the South Boston Collaborative Center with the "Beacon of Hope" award. The South Boston Collaborative Center offers treatment and prevention support for those struggling with substance abuse. A native of South Boston, Greeley has been running the CAPs program since 2002 and has a history of involvement in South Boston prevention programs.

A member of Carpenters Local 33 since 1983, Greeley is a licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor and a member of the Labor Assistance professionals of Massachusetts. He volunteered throughout the 1990s as the director of a South Boston Courthouse-based program that offered alcohol and drug counseling.




State to honor establishment of unemployment insurance at CC Posted by on

Seventy-five years ago, Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed into law the Unemployment Insurance Act. As all-too-many carpenters know these days, unemployment insurance has become one of the most important social safety nets in our country. It provides necessary support to workers who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own.

Protecting decent unemployment benefits and fighting for extensions of benefits when the economy is bad for longer periods of time has been a regular battle fought by unions. Appropriately, then, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development will be holding a celebration of the 75th anniversary at the Carpenters Center on November 17. The event, co-sponsored by the AFL-CIO of Massachusetts and the National Employment Law project, will take place at 10am.




Results of targeted races in New England Posted by on

Connecticut
Ballot issues in Bridgeport led extended voting hours, confusion and uncertain results in a couple of close races. By Wednesday morning, there still hadn't been a winner called in the Governor's race between NERCC-endorsed Dan Malloy and Tom Foley. Though Foley held a lead, it was narrow, only 10,000 votes separated the two after more than a million ballots had be cast. Ten percent of precincts had yet to deliver results.

Fourth district incumbent Representative Jim Himes also had to deal with the anxiety of Bridgeport ballot problems and a very close race. But the carpenter's choice was being declared the victor in his fight for re-election.

Chris Murphy, the Democratic incumbent in the 5th District scored a relative comfortable win over Sam Caligiuri winning 54% of the vote to the Republican's 46%.


Massachusetts

After Scott Brown's surprise win earlier in the year, Republicans had their eyes on more upsets in Massachusetts. Energized by national money and national momentum, they targeted both congressional and constitutional offices in the state. They lost every one of them.
The big news was Deval Patrick's win over Charlie Baker for Governor. Patrick was a solid ally of union carpenter issues in his first four-year term. His re-election ensures important progress on issues like misclassification in the construction industry won't be wiped away.

Carpenters were heavily involved in six congressional races, all of which ended up being wins with more convincing margins that some expected. Barney Frank, John Tierney and Nikki Tsongas won re-election by double digit margins while Bill Keating held on to the 10th Congressional seat for Democrats by beating Jeff Perry in a race that national GOP operatives thought very winnable. Keating will take over for the retiring Bill Delahunt.

At the state level, all constitutional offices stayed in Democratic hands, though some will have new faces. Attorney General Martha Coakely rebounded from her stinging loss to Brown by soundly winning re-election. Steve Grossman and Suzanne Bump won larger than expected victories for Treasurer and Auditor, respectively.

Of the three ballot questions considered by Massachusetts voters, the union had endorsed a position on only one: a no vote on Question 3. The question, which would have made a significant cut to the state income tax that would've had a devastating impact on local aid, was soundly defeated.

Maine
Two of the three carpenter targeted races in Maine resulted in victories on election day. Both incumbent Representatives won by comfortable margins. District 1 Representative Chellie Pingree took 57% of the vote in her contest against Dean Scontras. In the 2nd District, Mike Michaud was also a big winner, besting Republican Jason Levesque by 12 percentage points.

The race for Governor didn't go quite so well as Libby Mitchell lost a three-way race. Republican Paul LePage and Independent Eliot Cutler were locked in a tight race that hadn't yet been called by Wednesday morning, but would see one of them elected likely with less than 40% of the vote.

New Hampshire
The toughest night for Democrats in New England was undoubtedly in New Hampshire, where Republicans swept to massive victories in the State House with the exception being the corner office.

Governor John Lynch, endorsed by union carpenters, won a fourth two-year term, unprecedented since colonial times.

The New Hampshire delegation going to Washington will have a significantly new look. Republican Kelly Ayotte defeated Congressman Paul Hodes in the race to replace Republican Judd Gregg.

The seat Hodes gave up to run for Senate was also lost to Republicans as Charlie Bass won a return ticket to Washington by defeating Ann Kuster. Bass had served six terms as a Congressman before being defeated by Hodes in 2006.

Carol Shea-Porter, surprise winner in the 2006 elections, also went down to defeat at the hands of Republican Frank Guinta.

Rhode Island

Carpenters in Rhode Island had targeted two races, one on the state level and one on the federal level.

Carpenters endorsed former Republican Senator turned Independent Gubernatorial candidate Lincoln Chaffee, who was victorious. Chaffee defeated Republican John Robitaille and Democrat Frank Caprio. The son of long-time former Senator John Chaffee, Lincoln Chaffee left the GOP in 2007 after being defeated in a bid for re-election to the Senate by Sheldon Whitehouse.

Taking over Patrick Kennedy's seat in Congress will be David Cicilline, who defeated Republican John Loughlin. Cicilline was elected Mayor of Providence in 2003.

Vermont

The two targeted races in Vermont went in dramatically different directions, but in the end were both good news for union carpenters.
Democrat Peter Shumlin had to wait until 9 a.m. Wednesday before getting a call from Republican Brian Dube conceding the race for Governor of Vermont. The closely fought race came down to just a few thousand votes. Shumlin will take over for Jim Douglas who did not run for re-election to a fifth two-year term.
Senator Pat Leahy cruised to re-election over Republican Len Britton. His 33-point win sends him back to Washington for a seventh term. Leahy will be the second most senior member of the Senate in its next session.




New England resists national red tide Posted by on

A message from Mark Erlich, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the New England Regional Council of Carpenters:

Yesterday's election results indicated, once again, that voters in New England are independent thinkers and do not necessarily follow national trends. While Carpenter-endorsed candidates did not win every race in every state, they were overwhelmingly successful. Our efforts were critical in holding back the national Republican anti-union tide. Once again, the members of the New England Regional Council of Carpenters demonstrated their readiness to work hard on behalf of those politicians who have continued to defend workers rights in the most difficult economic and political environment of our lifetimes. Our members made signs, phone banked, attended rallies, knocked on doors and did all the crucial things that make up the ingredients of a winning campaign. I am as proud of our organization -- its members and its staff -- as I've ever been. Thank you all for your hard work. It paid off.




Mock Election held at Quinnipiac Posted by on


From Quad News/by Emily Morgan
11/2/10

Protesters Back on Mount Carmel
Election Day may have been Nov. 2, but protesters from the carpenter and steel workers unions wanted to get the vote a day earlier with their own election.

"We wanted to play off Election Day and find out Lahey's approval rating on campus," said Jeff Wolcheski, a business representative and organizer with the New England Regional Council of Carpenters.

Members of the Quinnipiac and Hamden communities driving up Mount Carmel Ave were met with the familiar sight of the protesters handing out flyers, but this time participants were asked to stop and cast their vote. In response to the question, "Do you approve of the way President Lahey handles construction projects on your campus?" voters could choose to mark either "approve" or "disapprove".

Responses were mainly verbal though, as the cool temperature kept participants from getting out of their cars to fill out a ballot, according to Wolcheski.

"Many of the people we've spoken to have said they disapprove," Wolcheski said.

The protesters are still looking to sit down with the Quinnipiac administration to discuss responsible employer language in the contracts the school gives to contractors they hire for their projects.

In September, Joe Rubertone, associate vice president for facilities administration, called Bruce Lydem, vice president and director of organizing for the Carpenters Local 24 union, to ask about the protests. According to Wolcheski, the phone call came after the school's Board of Trustees met at the university and saw the protesters.

While Lydem and Rubertone corresponded back and forth, protesters scaled down their activities. But on Sept. 28, all communication ceased, according to a press release sent out by William Jordan, a business representative and organizer for the New England Regional Council of Carpenters. After this, protesters decided to ramp up their efforts again.

Protesters have been handing out leaflets along Mount Carmel Ave and at the North and South lot entrances to the university since June

"We're asking for a level playing field," Wolcheski said. "[The Quinnipiac community] deserves quality work on campus."

The Connecticut Department of Labor has already issued stop work orders against two contractors working on campus projects because of the illegal misclassification of employees as independent contractors, according to the press release sent out by Jordan.

"We have a solution to the misclassification," Wolcheski said. "We want to speak about responsible employers working on campus."

Wolcheski has said their protests are not about hiring union workers over nonunion workers.

"If Quinnipiac University was acting responsibly and hiring responsible contractors who abide by community standard wages, benefits, retirement packages and state and federal laws, we would not be out here right now," Jordan said in the press release.

Wolcheski compared Quinnipiac's hiring practices to Yale University.

"Yale doesn't allow third and fourth tiered subcontractors," Wolcheski said. "Quinnipiac wants to be in the same league [as Yale] but won't act with the same responsibility."

The university has no comment on the matter according to a statement by John Morgan, associate vice president for public relations.

In September, Joe Rubertone, associate vice president for facilities administration, called Bruce Lydem, vice president and director of organizing for the Carpenters Local 24 union, to ask about the protests. According to
Wolcheski, the phone call came after the school's Board of Trustees met at the university and saw the protesters.

While Lydem and Rubertone corresponded back and forth, protesters scaled down their activities. But on Sept. 28, all communication ceased, according to a press release sent out by William Jordan, a business representative and organizer for the New England Regional Council of Carpenters. After this, protesters decided to ramp up their efforts again.
Protesters have been handing out leaflets along Mount Carmel Ave and at the North and South lot entrances to the university since June

"We're asking for a level playing field," Wolcheski said. "[The Quinnipiac community] deserves quality work on campus."

The Connecticut Department of Labor has already issued stop work orders against two contractors working on campus projects because of the illegal misclassification of employees as independent contractors, according to the press release sent out by Jordan.

"We have a solution to the misclassification," Wolcheski said. "We want to speak about responsible employers working on campus."

Wolcheski has said their protests are not about hiring union workers over nonunion workers.

"If Quinnipiac University was acting responsibly and hiring responsible contractors who abide by community standard wages, benefits, retirement packages and state and federal laws, we would not be out here right now," Jordan said in the press release.

Wolcheski compared Quinnipiac's hiring practices to Yale University.

"Yale doesn't allow third and fourth tiered subcontractors," Wolcheski said. "Quinnipiac wants to be in the same league [as Yale] but won't act with the same responsibility."

The university has no comment on the matter according to a statement by John Morgan, associate vice president for public relations.

Read the article on the Quad News website here.


TAGS: Connecticut



Congrats Eamonn. From your old friend Alan From I... Posted by on

Congrats Eamonn.

From your old friend Alan From Ireland




A message from Tom Flynn, NERCC Political Director Posted by on

Brothers and Sisters:

Polls will open in about 15 hours. Have you done all that you can to make sure you??re celebrating results tomorrow night rather than worrying about what the next few years will bring?

As a union, the Carpenters have a tremendous reputation as campaigners. We build signs, we do standouts, we make phone calls, we rally for our candidates. Now we need to put the final piece of the puzzle in place. We need to Get Out The Vote. GOTV is the most crucial part in any race. Raising the profile of a candidate is one important step. Convincing voters that your candidate is the best option in the field is a second, vital part of any campaign. But the only numbers that count in any election are vote totals.

We are supporting a full slate of candidates in every state in New England. And with few ??sure things?? out there this year, ever candidate and every campaign is looking for help. We have the experience and the bodies. Now is the time to turn our favorite candidates into our favorite elected officials. Now is the time to ensure that when we have an issue that??s important to us, our phone calls get returned and action gets taken on behalf of our members.

Not ever campaign activity is fun. At this point of the campaign, many voters are tired of phone calls and literature brought to their front door. But that doesn??t mean those activities don??t play a vital role in a successful GOTV effort.

I??m asking all staff and all members to get involved in any way necessary to help the candidates we??re backing. The negative national predictions are just that, predictions. Pundits don??t make election results, hard working campaigns and voters do. The future is in our hands. Let??s get to work.
Members interested in volunteering for campaign activity on election day, November 2, should contact their local union halls for activity in their area

Thank you,

Thomas Flynn
NERCC Political Director




Massachusetts poposes debarment for Callahan Posted by on

The Department of Capital Asset Management in Massachusetts has proposed debarring Callahan, Inc. from bidding or performing any work as a result of their actions in bidding for the contract to build a new Hanover High School.

After submitting their Statement of Qualifications to the town and submitting the lowest bid, it was discovered that Callahan, Inc had taken credit for projects performed by another company in order to qualify to bid in Hanover. Though the Attorney General twice advised the Town to throw out Hanover's bid or rebid the job through an expedited process, the town moved forward with Callahan.

Petitioned by a group of union carpenters living in Hanover, a judge then ordered work on the project to stop pending further consideration of the fraud and Hanover's selecting Callahan. Another judge over-ruled that order, sending the case to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. The SJC agreed with the Town's argument that although Callahan clearly lied on the SOQ, the Town was aware of the lies and chose to do business with the company anyway.

DCAM now appears to be saying that even though Hanover has been allowed to work with a contractor that lied about its qualifications, the State of Massachusetts will not allow it again. Unless Callahan asks for an wins an appeal from DCAM, the already tarnished reputation of the company will be formalized.
 





Mock Election to be held at Quinnipiac University Posted by on

After months of leafleting outside of Quinnipiac University's campus, carpenters are holding a mock election on Monday November 1, 2010 from 8:00AM until 1:00PM to see how the faculty, students, and area residents feel about President John Lahey's handling of their concerns in regards to illegal contractors working on Quinnipiac University projects.

Carpenters have been greeting, and passing out informational leaflets to local residents, faculty, and students since June 17, 2010, trying to raise awareness of the misclassification of workers by contractors hired directly by Quinnipiac University to work on campus projects.

The Connecticut Department of Labor already has issued Stop Work Orders, for illegal misclassification of employees as independent contractors against two contractors working on Quinnipiac University campus projects.

Wolcheski and the carpenters have made a point to let people know that this is not a matter of nonunion workers on campus. If Quinnipiac University was acting responsibly and hiring responsible contractors who abide by community standard wages, benefits, retirement packages, and state and federal laws, we would not be out here right now.

??We make our living in the construction industry,?? says Wolcheski. ??We know the good guys, the bad guys, and the really bad guys. We know all the scams and shortcuts that hurt not just workers in the industry, but owners like Quinnipiac and the local communities. For the University to simply fold their arms and claim ??they know best?? seems shortsighted and needlessly closed minded.??

Check in to the campaign??s website www.QuinnipiacToday.com to learn more about what??s going on at Quinnipiac and find out the results of Monday??s campus poll.


TAGS: Connecticut



Members encouraged to get out the vote for endorsed candidates Posted by on

This Tuesday, voters throughout New England and the United States will cast ballots electing candidates on the federal, state and local level. The winners in these elections will have a significant impact on many aspects of our lives. In particular, they will decide legislation regarding the construction industry and enforcement agencies that oversee existing laws. The New England Regional Council of Carpenters, Local Union affiliates and rank-and-file members have talked with and read up on issues and candidates. After thorough consideration and discussion of their positions in regards to economic, construction-related and union issues,the union has endorsed a number of candidates as worthy of votes by union carpenters. Below is a partial list. For information regarding more local races, please contact the Local Union within the district.

No matter where you live or who you choose to vote for, please exercise your right to vote. Encourage your family, friends and co-workers to cast a ballot as well. We all share responsibility for governing our communities. The future is in our hands.

Connecticut
For United States Senate: Richard Blumenthal
For Congress: Jim Himes and Chris Murphy
For Governor: Dan Malloy

Massachusetts
For Congress: Richard Neal, Jim McGovern, Barney Frank, John Tierney and Bill Keating
For Governor: Deval Patrick
For Treasurer: Steve Grossman
For Auditor: Suzanne Bump
Ballot Questions: No on Question 3.

Maine
For Congress: Chellie Pingree, Mike Michaud
For Governor: Libby Mitchell

New Hampshire
For Senate: Paul Hodes
For Congress: Carol Shea-Porter, Ann Kuster
For Governor: John Lynch

Rhode Island
For Congress: David Cicilline
For Governor: Lincoln Chafee

Vermont
For Senate: Patrick Leahy
For Governor: Peter Shumlin




Carpenters Union at the New England Business Expo Posted by on

The New England Regional Council of Carpenters was exhibiting today at the 24th annual New England Business Expo. The show was being held at the DCU Center in Worcester, MA.

The annual New England Business Expo brings together businesses from the region to market their products and services, increase visibility, and network with other professionals.

Attendees walked the show floor and had the opportunity to speak with various business vendors. They also attend professional business seminars in a wide variety of topic areas all intended to "jumpstart the imagination, re-energize and refocus your efforts" in the work place.

Representatives from the Carpenters Union were on hand, promoting union carpenters and contractors- the best joint venture in the industry.

While working at the trade show, Organizer Manny Gines was invited to do an interview with the AM Latino radio station La Nueva Mega, found on the dial at 890, 1310, and 1400.

Gines was interviewed by host Andres Perez. He spoke about the Carpenters Union and their efforts to protect all workers' rights. He added that the Carpenters Union offers the "best training in the United States. We also promote safety, productivity, and quality in the workplace. We fight and stand up for all labor issues and social justice."



The day was a huge success for the union, as representatives educated and built relationships between the union and attendees who we hope will use union carpenters for their future projects.




Charlie's friends Posted by on

,





Carpenters hot on the trail, the campaign trail Posted by on

It's been another busy week of political campaigning for union carpenters. More than just getting ready to cast their own votes, members are taking to the streets and the phones to champion their favorite candidates and encouraging others--including their union Brothers and Sisters, to do the same.

Tuesday night in Worcester, members from Carpenters Local 107 and other Carpenter Locals joined together to hold signs in support of Congressman Jim McGovern before a debate at the Northboro Senior Center. The debate was sponsored by the Northboro Tea Party. At previous events, Tea Party supporters have been overly enthusiastic, to the point of attempting to physically intimidate McGovern and his supporters at events.

That was not the case Tuesday. As noted by the Worcester Telegram and Gazette, those union carpenters more than outnumbered the Tea Partiers, they made them virtually invisible. This video, though a little dark, makes that point very clear.



McGovern, a former Aide to the late Congressman Joe Moakley, has been serving the 3rd Congressional District for fourteen years and has become a solid favorite of union carpenters.

The next night, carpenters in at least three areas of Massachusetts were getting ready for election night.

Close to 100 members of Carpenters Local 108 braved the rain to show their support for 2nd District Congressman Richie Neal. Representing a District that covers the lower third of the state from Milford to Springfield, Neal has been hitting the campaign trail and the television airwaves hard to earn another term with union carpenters lending their full support.


At the same time, members in Southeastern Massachusetts were dialing their Brother and Sister union carpenters encouraging them to cast their votes on Tuesday for Deval Patrick. From 3-7pm, a small group of members made more than 1,400 calls using the union's user-friendly calling system.



In Boston, Mayor Tom Menino visited with Members of Carpenters Local 33 urging them to gear up for a final push to re-elect Governor Deval Patrick. Responding to a recent article that highlighted some policy differences between the Mayor and the Governor over the last four years, Menino said it's true that he doesn't always agree with the Governor. "I don't always agree with my wife, either, but we've had a very long and happy relationship."

Menino said Charlie Baker and Republicans continually calling to cut taxes was "cheap rhetoric." "Don't buy it," he said. "Every city, town and state has to have revenue. Without taxes, you can't have schools. You can't have police officers. You can't have a fire department."

"This election is about jobs. This election is about you and your kids and family and how you're going to take care of them in the future. Last year a lot of union members voted for Scott Brown. The truth is a lot of these candidates sound wonderful, but they taste terrible. They don't care about you and your families and a lot of the people that support them would like nothing better than to see unions disappear."

Menino wrapped up by asking members to vote, encourage their family and friends to vote and to try to give two hours of their time between now and the time the polls close on Tuesday to make a difference in the campaign.





The people you meet... Posted by on

NERCC and the New England Carpenters Labor Management Program are at the Mainebiz Momentum Convention in Augusta, Maine this week to talk about how union carpenters and contractors are the best joint venture in the cosntruciton industry. While there, they got a visit from Maine Senator Susan Collins. Collins was interested in what the Carpenters union has been up to and is scheduling a meeting to have more detailed coversations after the elections.

If you're in Maine, stop by the show and visit with us at Booth #316.

Pictured, from left to right are: Molly Walsh of the Communications Department, Maine Senator Susan Collins and Maine Local 1996 Business Agent John Leavitt.


TAGS: Maine



Recognizing leadership Posted by on

The Boston Carpenters Apprenticeship and Training Program recently held a cookout at the Carpenters Center to thank members who have participated in the Mentoring Program.

The Mentoring Program, which is Directed by Local 33 Brother Peter Flynn connects experienced journey level carpenters to apprentices. Through phone calls and face-to-face meetings, the mentors reach out to younger members offering encouragement, advice and support. Mentors are contacted at least four times a year, after they attend formal training sessions to check in on their work reports, attendance at union meetings and adherence to apprentice program guidelines.

Construction can be a tough way to make a living, especially for younger carpenters facing one of the most difficult economic periods in generations. The program takes special steps to pair up women apprentices with women members and journey level carpenters that are military veterans with apprentices who have come in to the union through the Helmets to Hardhats program.


"The calls give the mentor the chance to pass on their experience in dealing with the types of challenging times that we're in right now," said Flynn. "the response has been extremely positive, both from the apprentices who appreciate the calls and the mentors."


TAGS: Training



Bad guys nailed in Mass, Conn Posted by on

Enforcement agencies in Connecticut and Massachusetts this week moved against contractors who have been violating laws in ways that undermine the ability of honest union carpenters and contractors to compete.

The Department of Labor in Connecticut performed a random on-site inspection of an AvalonBay job in Wilton, Connecticut, finding an out of state subcontractor who didn't have workers' compensation coverage. The employees of the company were sent home and will not be allowed to work on the site until they can prove proper coverage.

A representative of AvalonBay told the Norwalk Hour he expected the problem to be remedied soon, but did not indicate how they were able to work on the job without coverage in the first place.

Workers comp coverage should be of significant concern for AvalonBay, given their history in New England. Not long after OSHA had issued a series of citations for serious violations of fall protection regulations on jobs being built for AvalonBay, a 27-year old carpenter named Oscar Pintado fell to his death on an AvalonBay job in Woburn, Mass. He was working for a framing contractor which managed 150 wood framers. All of them, including Pintado, were listed as "independent contractors," meaning they were not covered by workers' compensation. His family was not eligible for any benefits or compensation.

In Massachusetts, the Attorney General's office reached a settlement agreement with Vincent Locke and his company V. Locke Contracting, Inc. over a string of violations for which they will pay a total of $100,000 in fines and restitution to workers.

After receiving a complaint that workers were not being paid the proper prevailing wage, Attorney General Martha Coakley's office began an investigation. Locke and V. Locke agreed to a settlement which cites them for intentionally violating the Prevailing Wage Law by failing to pay the prevailing wage to 35 employees. They are also being cited for violating Prevailing Wage Records Keeping Laws, violating the Independent contractor law by misclassifying employees as independent contractors and violating Overtime Law. Each of the citations cover violations that occurred from January 2008 through the investigation.

Locke and his company have agreed to make payments totaling $90,000 to workers and to pay the state $2,500 for each of the four citations. They will also be debarred from bidding on or performing any public work for a period of six months.

Also yesterday, Coakley's office reported that two subcontractors working on the Hanover High School project for Callahan, Inc. have been cited for violations of wage and wage reporting laws. Action Floors has been issued a $2,000 penalty for intentionally failing to submit true and accurate certified payroll while Superior Foundations was found to have intentionally failing to pay proper prevailing wages on the Hanover High School project. Superior was also cited for prevailing wage violations while working on the Swansea Police Station. Superior has been issued a $2,000 penalty for the violations and order to pay $3,802.94 in restitution to workers who were cheated.

The Hanover High School project has been a source of controversy for years. After fighting to win local approval to fund construction of a new building, local authorities came under fire for ignoring or excusing misleading statements Callahan, Inc made to justify it's qualifications for the project. The Town successfully fought to have put aside opinions by the Attorney General's office and a suit brought by union carpenters in Hanover that the project should be rebid. Treasurer Tim Cahill, who's office was in control of funding for the project, refused repeated requests to intervene.





Wicked big problems at Legacy Place Posted by on

When six carpenters weren't paid the wages they were owed working on a Wicked Pizza at the upscale Legacy Place shopping center in Dedham, Mass., they turned to the Carpenters union for help. Though they weren't union members, anytime a contractor can get away without paying carpenters, it undermines industry standards and union members. As fellow carpenters, helping them is also just the right thing to do.

So NERCC Organizers Marty Coyle and Manny Gines organized a demonstration with other staff that quickly got the attention of the mall's management. Security scrambled on a Segway in a golf cart and a pickup truck. Police were called not once, but twice, even when the demonstration moved to the busy, but public sidewalk along busy Route 1.

Elite Drywall employed the carpenters on the Wicked Pizza project and on another job in New Hampshire. After promising to deliver checks to the carpenters, they simply strung them along until the carpenters walked off on strike. They've since filed wage complaints in Massachusetts and New Hampshire to recover the $15,000 they are owed.





Carpenters campaign for Frank Posted by on

The picture's a bit blurry, but union carpenters have been clear in their support for Congressman Barney Frank. Why? Because he's never shied away from supporting working class people and issues important to union members.





Carpenters for Murphy in CT Posted by on

Union Carpenters in Connecticut have taken to the campaign trail to show their support for 5th District Congressman Chris Murphy. These pictures were taken before Congressman Murphy's recent debate.





Practicing what he teaches Posted by on

Apprentices in Eastern Massachusetts and many journey level carpenters who have taken upgrade training are familiar with Tim Tudor and his interest in energy efficient building. For several years he's taught classes focusing on energy efficient building, renovation and weatherization in Millbury and Boston in addition to woodframe training. Now his neighbors on Cape Cod are learning how serious he is about green building. Tudor was featured in a piece last week in the Cape Cod Times for his participation in a program that provides rebates to home owners who take steps to reduce their energy use.

The goal of the program is to reduce energy consumption by 50%. Tudor is aiming for a 70% reduction, which would net him a $17,000 rebate. Tudor is doing a comprehensive rehab of his home--called a deep energy retrofit--including new cellulose insulation in the walls, and insulating panels on the exterior of the roof and walls. The roof will be raised by 12-inch thick panels while the walls will have 4-inch thick panels covered by siding.

Other work includes changing doors and windows and taking other steps to reduce the air flow through the house. You can read more about Tudor's project on the Cape Cod Time's site here.


Photos from CapeCodTimes.com. Click image for more photots.


TAGS: Leed, Training



Mass 1099 task force reports increased success Posted by on

The Massachusetts Joint Task Force on the Underground Economy and the Employee Misclassification (JTF) has released its annual report for 2010, showing a dramatic increase in collected taxes owed and penalties issued. The report, summarizing the second year of work by the JTF, lists $6.5 million was collected through cooperative enforcement, up from $1.4 million last year. The total includes $2 million in new unemployment insurance taxes $1.5 million in overdue taxes collected through 196 audit investigations and $1.87 million in fines as a result of 3,676 stop work orders issued for lack of workers' compensation insurance. The JTF was formed by an Executive Order of Governor Deval Patrick early March of 2008. There are now more than a dozen state agencies sharing information relevant to the underground economy and cooperating in enforcement efforts. The full annual report is available online here.

Workers who feel they are being misclassified can request assistance here.





A look at job loss/creation Posted by on

In the second edition of White House White Board, Austan Goolsbee, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, looks back at the President??s record on the economy through the perspective of the last three years in private sector employment.

From WhiteHouse.gov.



"Here??s the bottom line: when President Obama came into office in January of 2009, we were in the middle of the worst economic crisis this country has seen since the Great Depression. Through the Recovery Act, tax credits for working families and small businesses, and investments in the industries of the future, we are getting back on the right track. We went from losing nearly 800,000 jobs in a single month as the President came into office to our ninth straight month of private sector job growth last month.
We still have a lot of work to do. Times are still tough for millions of Americans who are out of work, and we??re not going to rest until those folks can find a job.
"


TAGS: Economy, Jobs, Obama



CT members rally for Malloy Posted by on

Union carpenters are doing their part to protect working standards in Connecticut by supporting former Stamford Mayor Dannel Malloy's bid for the Governor's office. Malloy is locked in a tight race with businessman Tom Foley.

The latest show of support from union carpenters was in New London where members joined with officers of the New London Police Department and other uions at a rally prior to the most recent televised debate.

Malloy and his running mate Nancy Wyman addressed the enthusiastic crowd as did George Jepsen, a long-time Carpenters union favorite who is running for Attorney General and Second District Congressman Joe Courtney.





Peabody Learning Academy opens its doors, thanks carpenters Posted by on



The Northshore Mall, along with the Simon Youth Foundation, held a ribbon cutting ceremony today at the newly opened Peabody Learning Academy. City and school officials, students, along with representatives from Simon Malls, union leaders, and several of the Boston insurance firms supporting the project, gathered for the ceremony.

This Education Resource Center (ERC) is the first of its kind in New England. The project was organized by the Simon Youth Foundation, the nonprofit arm of Simon Property Group, which is part owner and manager of the mall.

The Simon Youth Foundation takes advantage of empty space in company-owned malls to house these satellite schools. The school districts provide the teachers, equipment, and pay the utilities. The Simon Youth Foundation covers the rent and more importantly facilities partnerships with other organizations ?C in this case, the Carpenters Union.

The Simon Youth Foundation currently serves more than 2,500 students through 25 ERCs located in 12 states, and last year gave $1.4 million in scholarships to graduates. The ERCs have served over 19,000 students since the inception of the program in 1998.

One supervisor and two teachers, all from the Peabody school district, staff the ERC to assist students who are on the verge of dropping out, or who have already left, to reverse course and earn their high school diploma. There are currently nineteen students enrolled at the Peabody Learning Academy.

The program provides a rigorous academic program, especially in the areas of reading, writing, and mathematics, within a nontraditional learning environment. The program offers students the opportunity to earn a high school diploma and also provides career counseling for school-to-college and school-to-work transitions.

Volunteers from the Carpenters Union did all of the metal stud/drywall work at the facility as well as the suspended ceilings, doors and hardware, and all of the case work including kitchen cabinets and wood trim.

Each of the speakers at the ribbon cutting ceremony took time to thank all of the trades unions for volunteering 100% of the labor for the project.

The Carpenters Union was especially recognized for the being the first trade to step on board with the project.

??Very early on I approached Ken Amero and Nick DiGiovanni from the Carpenters Union and asked if [the Carpenters] could make a contribution of labor to the project. They were the first from the labor side to embrace this project,?? said Mark Whiting, Area General Manager of the Northshore Mall.

??It was a collaborative effort to bring this job together and we really appreciate their level of dedication.??

Dr. Richard Markoff, the Executive Vice President of the Simon Youth Foundation, as he commended all those involved with spearheading the project. When asked specifically about the help the ERC received from the Carpenters Union he said, ??Those volunteers get our unceasing gratitude, I cannot say enough about their tremendous support, which helped make this dream a reality. Their time and effort is going to help so many kids turn their lives around.??

A plaque will hang at the Peabody Learning Academy to recognize and thank the New England Carpenters Union and the volunteers that made the project possible.




Congrats on the new building, looks lovely! Posted by on

Congrats on the new building, looks lovely!




Video of Deval Patrick at the Carpenters Center Posted by on




Governor Patrick visits the Carpenters Center Posted by on

To see more pictures, click here.

Patrick fires up Carpenters Center
A friendship was renewed this week at the Carpenters Center as Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick visited with more than 450 union carpenters to talk about his first term in office and his re-election campaign. He was greeted enthusiastically by members both eager to continue the relationship and fearful of what might happen if Republican Charlie Baker were elected.

Four years ago Patrick joined Organizers from the Carpenters union on a visit to a nonunion site on the North Shore. Despite the rain and threat of arrest, Patrick dove right in, learning firsthand how some contractors in the industry cheat workers out of their wages or basic protections like unemployment or workers' compensation coverage. After his election, Patrick went to work on the underground economy, establishing a Task Force of multiple state agencies to share information and cooperate on enforcement efforts.

Both Patrick and NERCC Executive Secretary-Treasurer Mark Erlich recounted the experience and how it shaped the Patrick administration.

Erlich got the crowd fired up talking about the beating the construction industry has taken over the last two years, it's struggle to recover and the contrasting the positions of Governor Patrick and Charlie Baker on important issues:

"Corporate profits are up, the banks are flush with cash, but they will not lend, they will not spend and, as a result, we don't build," Erlich said. "But that's what Deval Patrick has done. Charlie Baker and Tim Cahill want to slash and burn and eliminate any further investment in public construction.We know what the consequences of that would be"

"Governor Deval Patrick has made it clear that he supports a state prevailing wage law.Charlie Baker opposes it. Governor Deval Patrick re-established the Secretary of Labor position and has put the talented Joanne Goldstein in that position. Baker demonizes unions on tv ads and everywhere else and Tim Cahill could care less if unions played a role in state government.

"Governor Deval Patrick opposed cutting unemployment benefits from 30 to 26 weeks because he recognized the pain that people are experiencing in the depths of this recession.Charlie Baker supported the cuts and Tim Cahill told a talk radio host that Massachusetts benefits are too high and jobless workers collect too long.

"Governor Deval Patrick supports Project Labor Agreements, Charlie Baker opposes them.

"Governor Deval Patrick has made record numbers of labor appointments to important state boards and agencies. You can bet that would not happen under a Baker or Cahill administration."

Govenor Patrick then took the microphone and highighted his efforts to serve not just the bottom line of the budget, but the citizens and the future of the Commonwealth.

"Government is about people, not abstract policy ideas," he said, before talking about groups of unemployed workers he has met who are frustrated, but not necessarily angry, the way they are made out to be by talk radio shows.

"They're not angry, they're scared," Patrick said. "They're not looking at the Governor or the Mayor or others and saying it's their fault. they're not looking to government to solve their problems. They jsut want to know that you see them. That you're worried about them, and that you're doing what you can for them. The whole confidence in the American Dream is up for grabs."

"Charlie Baker doesn't see you. He doesn't see the people behind the choices we have to make. To him, the budget is a math problem. For me, it's about people, human beings. And the hard and difficult and compelling balance that we have to strike.

Patrick then confronted an issue that has been at the forefront of carpenters minds this election season: a casino bill. Saying he proposed the first casino bill and appreciated the help of union carpenters and others to push it forward, he said he wouldn't sign the existing bill because it served connected special interests on Beacon Hill, not workers.

He pledged to continue and win the fight with "a good bill, a jobs creating bill because it will emphasize where the jobs are, which is in the destination resort style casinos and not just wheeling in slot machines to tracks that are connected and are powerful interests on Beacon Hill.

Patrick took questions from several union members, then lingered to shake hands and have one-on-one conversations with members about the election and the construction industry.

"I think Governor Patrick showed that he's interested and concerned with our issues and our members," said Political Director Tom Flynn. "He has a difficult election, but I think he convinced a lot of carpenters to support him and help on his campaign because he's on their side. I think he motivated a lot of union carpenters."




Apprentice Expo 2010 Posted by on

On Friday, October 1st, the New England Carpenters Union hosted the annual Apprenticeship Expo. Students and instructors from thirty-eight schools attended the event. NERCC staff gave each school a guided tour of the training facility to give the students a firsthand look at the work of professional union carpenters.



It was a record turnout for this year??s Apprenticeship Expo, with over 900 students in attendance. The Expo drew these record numbers in spite of the heavy rains that forced some logistical changes to be made to the set up of the event. Additionally, before the first group of students arrived, the training center, along with the rest of the town of Millbury, lost power due to a downed transformer. Training Center staff quickly jumped in to action, preparing generators to power the facility. Luckily, the town??s power was restored in time for the Expo to begin, and the day continued on without a hitch. The Expo was a huge success.

Students attending the event learned about career opportunities in the Carpenters Union. While touring the facilities they were able to see union carpenters showcase their skills in the following areas: Green Construction/Lead Awareness, Best Practices in Health Care Construction, Scaffold Erector Construction, Rough Terrain & Aerial Lift, General Carpentry, Concrete Forms, Interior Systems/Drywall, Interior Finish/Cabinet Install, Floorcovering, Piledriving, Commercial Diving, Mill Cabinet, Alucobond Panel Installation, and Millwright.

Robert Archambault, a teacher from Chicopee Comprehensive High School, brought a small group of students to this year??s Expo. It was the second year his school had attended the event. "This is a great opportunity for our students. It's a real life look at the opportunities available to them after they graduate and what will be expected of them as union carpenters. You can't get better than this."

The following schools attended this year??s Expo:
Blackstone Valley
Blue Hills Regional Vocational Technical High School
Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School
Cape Cod Regional Technical High School
Carpenters Dream Works
Chicopee High School
Franklin County Tech School
Greater Lawrence School
Greater Lowell Technical High School
Job Corps Connecticut
Keefe Technical School
Lawrence CPA
Leominster Center Tech Ed
Lower Pioneer Valley
Lynn Vocational Technical High School
Madison Park Technical Vocational High School
Minute Man Career and Technical High School
Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School
Nashoba Regional Vocational Technical School
Northeast Metropolitan Regional Vocational School
North Shore Regional Vocational
Old Colony Regional Vocational Technical High School
Pathfinder Regional Vocational Technical High School
Plymouth South High School
Quincy High School
Shawsheen Valley Tech High
Shriver Job Corps, Devens, MA
Silver Lake Regional High School
Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School
Smith Vocational High School
South High School
South Shore Regional Vocational Technical High School
Tantasqua Regional High School
Tri County Regional Vocational Technical High School
Upper Cape Cod Regional Technical School
Westfield Voc Tech High School
Westover Job Corps
Wm J Dean Vocational Tech High School ?C Holyoke, MA


TAGS: Training



Training: first and foremost Posted by on

Few programs are as important to the construction industry as training, and no one trains carpenters like the Carpenters Union.

The Carpenters Union focuses on helping all carpenters, whether they've been working in the industry for thirty years or they're just getting their start. We're committed to providing well-rounded carpenters across the entire range of building disciplines.

Check out the schedule of classes being offered this fall and winter in Connecticut to find the class and schedule that??s right for you.





Labor Secretary Visits Carpenters Center Posted by on

Joanne Goldstein, Massachusetts Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development paid a visit to the Carpenters Center this week to learn more about apprenticeship and upgrade training.

Last month, the Boston Carpenters Apprenticeship and Training Fund was awarded a $166,000 grant to train and certify long-term unemployed carpenters in metal framing and drywall installation. The money originated from the American Recovery and Reinvestment
Act, often referred to as the "Stimulus Bill. It was part of $1.2 million that was dispersed by the state to support ??efforts to equip Massachusetts workers with 21st century economy skills.??





Labor Secretary visits Carpenters Center Posted by on

Joanne Goldstein, Massachusetts Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development paid a visit to the Carpenters Center this week to learn more about apprenticeship and upgrade training.

Last month, the Boston Carpenters Apprenticeship and Training Fund was awarded a $166,000 grant to train and certify long-term unemployed carpenters in metal framing and drywall installation. The money originated from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, often referred to as the "Stimulus Bill. It was part of $1.2 million that was dispersed by the state to support ??efforts to equip Massachusetts workers with 21st century economy skills.??




browse POSTS BY CATeGORY: