MCAA Hits ‘The Hill’
The MCAA held its annual South of 40 Conference and Legislative Conference in May in Washington, D.C. A healthy attendance at all events made the week a resounding success.
|The South of 40 group gathered for a day of learning and fun.|
Kicking off the week on Tuesday, May 20, was the South of 40 Conference. Attendees gathered in front of the Capitol Building, where they were met by Mary Oehrlein, historic preservation officer, Office of the Architect of the Capitol, who offered a U.S. Capitol Stone Repair Tour. Oehrlein led attendees around the exterior of the Capitol, explaining the different types of repairs, cleaning and restoration occurring around the building. (Look for a special article covering these repairs in an upcoming issue of Masonry.)
The South of 40 Conference also included educational seminars on masonry ordinances, delivered by the Texas Masonry Council’s Rudy Garza; bricklaying robots, delivered by Scott Peters of Construction Robotics; and swarm bots, delivered by Professor Michael Silver, University of Buffalo.
The day was crowned by a one-of-a-kind, behind-the-scenes tour of the Capitol Building. Rep. Reid Ribble of Wisconsin gave South of 40 Conference attendees a private tour that included special access and a wealth of information. Some South of 40 Conference participants attended various Congressional fundraisers in the evening, and a few found the time to take in a Washington Nationals baseball game that night. It was a busy day, to say the least
|Construction Robotics’ Scott Peters talked to the South of 40 group about advances in masonry robotics.||The Texas Masonry Council’s Rudy Garza addressed the South of 40 group to discuss masonry ordinances.||Michael Silver addressed the South of 40 group about the marriage of technology and architecture, including swarm bots.|
|The U.S. Capitol’s historic preservation officer, Mary Oehrlein (standing center, in black), gave the South of 40 group a tour of the Capitol’s exterior stone repairs.||Congressman Reid Ribble led the South of 40 group on a behind-the-scenes tour of the U.S. Capitol.|
Movin’ and shakin’ on The Hill
Bright and early on Wednesday morning, Legislative Conference attendees met for a strategy breakfast and issues briefing at Bullfeathers restaurant. The Keelen Group’s Stephen Borg assured that conference attendees were prepared for a full day of visiting representatives and senators. More than 100 meetings took place during two days, thanks to the efforts of The Keelen Group in organizing and setting meetings for attendees.
|Legislative Conference attendees were briefed by Keelen Group’s Steve Borg before a day on The Hill.||Keelen Group’s Matt Keelen, MCAA Vice Chairman Mike Sutter, Congresswoman Krysten Sinema, and Colleen Sutter|
|Conference attendees enjoy a relaxing evening reception hosted by The Keelen Group.||Senator Richard Burr (4th from left) accepts the MCAA Freedom and Prosperity Award from Gary Joyner (4th from right).|
The MCAA bestowed the Freedom and Prosperity Award to four members of Congress, including Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC); Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL); Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-KY); and Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL).
The Freedom and Prosperity Awards were created to recognize Members of Congress who have championed pro-small business policies supported by MCAA. Recipients understand that MCAA member companies, free from regulatory burden, can focus on growing their businesses and providing jobs, which will strengthen the U.S. economy and allow everyone to prosper.
|Mark Kemp presented the MCAA Freedom and Prosperity Award to Congressman Brett Guthrie.||Senator Bill Nelson accepts the MCAA Freedom and Prosperity Award from Mark Kemp.|
MCAA positions to Members of Congress
The MCAA makes a difference for its members every year by sitting front and center in the offices of our Members of Congress, explaining our positions on several important bills. Bills or concerns include: repeal of the 3% Government Withholding Tax; repeal of the Alternative Minimum Tax; opposition of America’s Affordable Health Choices Act; opposition of Bid Shopping; support of Comprehensive Immigration Reform; support of Concrete Masonry Checkoff; opposition of new Crystalline Silica regulation from OSHA; repeal of the Estate Tax; support of incorporating life-cycle costs into Military Construction (MILCON); improved enforcement of laws re: Misclassification of Employees at Independent Contractors; support of a broad-based approach to National Energy Policy; support of Pension Reform; support of Rebounding The Highly Skilled Workforce; non-support of unnecessary Regulation/Agency Rulemaking; support of School Construction; and support of the Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy.
|Congressman Trent Franks, Colleen Sutter, MCAA Vice Chairman Mike Sutter||Lisa Prichard, Senator Jeff Flake, MCAA Vice Chairman Mike Sutter, and Moroni Mejia|
|MCAA Chairman Mark Kemp, Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn, Andy Sneed and Bryan Foster||Lindsey Stringer, Congressman Bill Flores, Moroni Mejia, and Steve Borg
|Brent Moore, Ashlee Moore, Congressman Walter Jones, Gary Joyner, and Imani Brodie||Vice Chairman Mike Sutter, Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick, Lisa Prichard, and Moroni Mejia|
|Imani Brodie, Gary Joyner, Congressman Howard Coble, Brent Moore, Ashlee Moore, and Jennifer Morrell||MCAA President and CEO Jeff Buczkiewicz, MCAA Vice Chairman Mike Sutter, Sen. Jerry Moran, MCAA Chairman Mark Kemp, MCAA Secretary Paul Oldham, Keelen Group’s Steve Borg|
You can learn where the MCAA officially stands on these positions by visiting www.masoncontractors.org/positions.
|2014 OFFICIAL SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500® REGIONAL SCHEDULE|
Saturday, June 14, Gatineau, QB2. Ohio
Saturday, August 2, Harrison, OH
4. East Tennessee
6. British Columbia
8. West Tennessee
Wednesday, October 8, Waterloo, ON14. Pennsylvania
Thursday, October 9, Crum Lynne, PA
17. North Carolina
18. New Jersey
19. North Texas
20. South Texas
As the first female president of the North Carolina Masonry Contractors Association, Ashlee Moore has a full plate. But all indications are that she’ll do a fantastic job leading the masonry contractors of North Carolina. Ashlee, a manager at Koontz Masonry Inc. (KMI), is a spit fire – both smart and capable. Masonry wanted to get to know Ashlee a little better, and here’s what we learned:
Masonry: Explain how masonry infiltrated your family.
Masonry: What’s it like to be a woman in such a male-dominated field?
Masonry: Women in leadership roles have a special job as they lead others, but still keep their families going day to day. How do you manage that, and what is your advice for women trying to achieve a work/life balance?
Masonry: What are your goals during your tenure as president of NCMCA?
Masonry: Do you feel like the masonry industry is behind some other materials in marketing itself, and are we addressing it now?
Masonry: Any thoughts about the Mason Contractors Association of America?
Masonry: Any comments on the OSHA proposed silica rule and how the masonry industry has united to fight this proposed rule?
Masonry: Why is the NCMCA such a strong, successful association?
We try to keep our local chapters strong by having monthly meetings, we offer training and we have an excellent certification program. We have golf tournaments, build Habitat houses, have brick and block laying competitions, and we strongly support our local high school masonry programs.
Lynn Nash, our executive VP at NCMCA, is one of the major reasons we have such a strong association. He keeps everything running smoothly and keeps all of us informed of issues affecting our industry.
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