In this edition of our newsletter, I want to bring all of you up to date on our job creating initiatives, as well as some of the volunteer efforts being made throughout the state.
Campaign for Jobs (C4J) – This is an initiative from the International Masonry Institute (IMI) that focuses on very specific jobs in our jurisdiction in the very early planning stages. Led by IMI’s professionals in design, sustainability, green building and building codes, the effort is made to influence owners and their design representatives to make sure as much of the products the BAC installs are used. Here is a brief listing of current projects/owners targeted; New Jersey City University, Rowan University, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Cancer Institute of New Jersey at Rutgers and on a national level, Marriott Hotels.
New Jersey Structural Coalition – Our Structural Coalition is made up of the BAC, Masonry Contractors of New Jersey and IMI. Through this coalition we have hired a professional structural engineer. Every month our engineer, along with one of the two IMI architects, visit firms throughout our jurisdiction doing preservations on the benefits of building using masonry as the structural component of their building. We also present how we can be competitive not only in the overall cost but in scheduling as well. To date, the coalition has met with architectural and engineering firms. We have also met with the NJ Schools Development Authority (SDA), the NJ Department of Community Affairs (DCA), as well as local school boards.
Legislative – The legislative process has become more and more of a day to day effort of your Union and your representatives. But the result of that has been the passage of “Direct Hire” agreements as well as “Responsible Bidders” requirements. Through the direct efforts of your Union representatives, we have passed these types of agreements, a government entity hires our BAC members directly to do work. Under “Responsible Bidders” requirements, Department of Labor (DOL) apprentice training as well as health care benefits is mandated on employers. This benefits our Union employer partners and therefore our members.
Marketing – “Retooling, Refining, Realigning – Rebuilding America’s Oldest Craft Brick by Brick” was adopted almost two years ago now. We continue to meet with private developers in an effort to convince them of the benefits of using BAC members on their projects. We continue to offer cross craft and upgrade training to our members, as well as training new products and systems on the market like “Rain Screen” to make sure we are positioned to install the work properly when called upon. We must continue to ensure that we are without question “the Best Hands in the Business”. Internally, we continue to build a database on everyone doing business in the construction industry throughout our jurisdiction. Currently, we have over 1,000 contacts!
These are a few of the efforts being made on behalf of you, our members, to create opportunities for you to go to work. Working together with our International, IMI and our contractor partners, we are covering every aspect of our industry like never before. As the construction economy begins to improve, we are well positioned to take advantage of every job opportunity available. There are still some areas of our state that remain slow, and we suggest that everyone be willing to travel to secure the work where we have it. We strongly urge everyone to learn about new products and training, as well as upgrade your crafts as necessary. This International Union has not been around since 1865 by mistake. We ALL must remain involved and diligent to make sure that proud tradition continues!
The leadership of your Union will continue to work to level the playing field, raise our visibility, provide effective and beneficial training, and identify the REAL problems we face and offer solutions to overcome them. All this is to provide opportunity for our members to go to work. We will do our part. Will you?
Richard E. Tolson
BAC Local 4 Members Say:
No Union Funds for a Non-Union Project
BAC Local 4 Members recently voiced opposition to a Montclair NJ project partially funded by the California Teachers Union Pension Fund. California Pension money is lowering the standards for construction workers in N.J.
BAC/ ADC of NJ Statewide Apprentice Contest
Apprentice Coordinators Tom Feeney and Robert Alesandro worked together to organize a statewide contest for our apprentices. The effort consisted of three separate competitions. The Local #4 contest was held on March 9th at the Fairfield Training Center and the Local #5 contest was held on April 13th at the Bordentown Training Center as a precursor for the state competition, which was held on May 18th at the Bordentown Training Center. A special thank you to all of the judges and our pre job students. We would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all of our participants on the local and state level.