Time Flies When You’re Working Hard
By Paul Oldham
How time is flying. It really seems as you get older, the days go by quicker. Our company has had smaller projects this year than we have had for the last few years, which keeps everyone hoping. By the time you get up and go on a project, it's over, but the crews seem to be flowing better and happier. When I talk to prospective employees, I always point out that in our business, a positive can be that your work environment does change, and it changes often. It's not like you are going to show up every day to the same building. With us, you get a new and different location quite often, I believe that is a good selling point to many people.
In August, our Executive Board attended the NCMA’s Midyear Meeting in Milwaukee. The Check-Off program was a topic at the meetings. At the time, the registration process for manufacturers was continuing with the anticipation that it would be done by the end of August, in the hopes that the announcement of the voting period would closely follow. Lots of excitement and positive momentum on that front, and the NCMA is continuing to work through and clear up questions from the opposition. MCAA continues to support all efforts for our industry to have a common mechanism for funding education and promotion of our products.
Workforce development was discussed at great length, does anyone have a real solid answer to this?— I don’t believe anyone really does, and mostly because every industry is battling this issue. We attended their Legislative Committee meeting and were updated on their current approach to legislative issues, and their lobbyist gave a lengthy update on the current Infrastructure Bills, and their paths, and reality of passage. Every time I listen to the process it makes my head spin. There are good parts to the negotiated bill that would give our industry opportunities, so we will see. NCMA continues to campaign how the CMU industry is the best form of resilient construction, and keeps its eye on the ever-growing movement dealing with the carbon cycle.
During the pandemic, the NCMA has been vetting through the process of merging their association and the ICPI (Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute). There was a lot of excitement at the meetings about this becoming a reality, based on where they are currently it is looking like it will become a reality in 2022. I would like to thank our entire executive board, Larry, Dick, Kent, and Jeff for attending. It allowed us to work on many MCAA items face-to-face and to grow the personal connection that forms while serving.
We will be having our Midyear meeting in Memphis in a few weeks. Registrations for the event hit new records this year in both attendance and promptness. The hotel rooms were gone within two weeks of registration opening up. Jeff and his team have worked hard to find more rooms, and those have filled up as soon as we got them. It will be an exciting and information-packed event. I understand the optional events have filled up as well. I’m also looking forward to the haunted tour. Many Midyear meetings ago, Lisa and I did an optional Haunted Ghost tour in Chicago that we regularly reminisce about. My mouth is already watering for the Memphis BBQ, the Rendezvous is just across the street down the alley, and I can’t wait to take in some evening blues and jazz music on Beale Street. I wish everyone safe travels and look forward to seeing everyone face-to-face. If you're not able to attend, look forward to the next issues of the magazine for highlights.
About the Author
Paul Oldham is the MCAA Legislative Committee Chairperson.