June 30, 2004 A PRIMEDIA Property Vol. III No. 12
CONTENTS
Contractors Can Now Recruit Entry-Level Electrical Apprentices Online

Construction Market Stays Steady in April

Department of Homeland Security Seeks Help From Private Sector

Proposed Legislation Would Curb Counterfeiting

City of Bellevue, Wash., to Build New Community Center

City of Tigard, Ore., Accepting Proposals for Electrical Maintenance Services

Testing Circuit Breakers Safely

Eye on Safety

The Illuminating Engineering Society of North America Annual Conference

National Training Institute Event

Future Electricians of America


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    Around the Circuit
    Contractors Can Now Recruit Entry-Level Electrical Apprentices Online
    The electrical industry faced a severe skilled labor shortage during the construction boom, and industry experts are predicting another shortfall in the coming years. To help contractors recruit electrical apprentices, the Youth Training and Development Consortium (YTDC) recently launched a national recruitment service that places entry-level craftspeople into the construction and industrial maintenance industries. Contractors can search through a pool of 10,000 qualified candidates on YTDC's Web site. The majority of the students will initially come from Job Corps programs, but will eventually come from high school training programs across the United States. Kurt Morauer of the YTDC says the students will have the academic equivalent of the first year of apprenticeship training. "Our focus is recruiting 18- to 24-year-old youths into our industry in all trades," he says. "These entry-level electricians will have already made more than a year's commitment to becoming an electrician, which should help the retention percentage for the apprenticeship programs."


    ADVERTISEMENT
    Insulation Testing Just Got Easier!
    AEMC Instruments' Megohmmeter Model 5070 is the only fully automated 5000V graphical insulation tester, which provides insulation measurements to 10Tohm. Test results include DAR, PI, DD, Capacitance, Leakage Current as well as programmable temperature correction of resistance readings. It offers the ability to program up to three step voltage profiles (40 to 5100V), each containing up to five steps. It has an RS-232 interface and an extensive memory function, which permits storage results in files specific to the device under test. Includes DataView Lite software for data storage, analysis and report generation. Visit www.aemc.com to learn more.


    Construction Market Stays Steady in April
    Nonresidential building showed modest improvement in April to offset the slight drop in single-family housing, according to McGraw-Hill Construction. Residential building slipped 2% to $309.7 billion, nonresidential building posted a 2% gain and increased to $149.1 billion, and nonbuilding construction went up 1% to $86.7 billion. Many of the sectors reported gains, including stores (10%), warehouses (21%), school construction (6%), health-care facilities (16%), sewers (28%), water supply systems (10%), and river/harbor development (7%). Overall, total construction on an unadjusted basis was up 9% for the first four months of 2004 compared to the same period a year ago.

    Department of Homeland Security Seeks Help From Private Sector
    The one-year-old Department of Homeland Security depends heavily on the private sector because it contains the majority of the critical infrastructure that needs to be protected, according to the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA). To seek help from the private sector, the department is now posting its business opportunities on its Web site. Contractors can learn about the current solicitations and look ahead at future opportunities on the Homeland Security Open for Business Web site. Firms can also visit the Win Government Contracts Web site for more information about subcontract and small business opportunities.

    Proposed Legislation Would Curb Counterfeiting
    An anti-counterfeiting bill, which is sponsored by Representative Joe Knollenberg (R-MI), could go in front of the House and Senate this year. The legislation would amend the law prohibiting trafficking in products with counterfeit trademarks by imposing criminal sanctions on not only the individuals who traffic in goods with counterfeit marks, but also those who are involved with counterfeit trademarks and certification marks. The bill would also mandate the forfeiture of the counterfeit product, the proceeds made from the sale, and the tools used to make the counterfeit product or trademark. Finally, the bill would change the definition of a counterfeit mark to include copies of trademarks that are well known by the public.


    ADVERTISEMENT
    Split-Jaw™ Smart-Meter Brings New Meaning to "Automatic" Testing.
    The remarkable Split-Jaw™ Smart-Meter from IDEAL takes basic electrical measuring to a new level of convenience and safety with automatic no-dial testing. And the open configuration of the jaw allows for quick current measurements, especially in hard-to-reach panels. Visit www.idealindustries.com for a complete product profile of the easiest-to-use electrical tester on the market.


    Project Watch
    City of Bellevue, Wash., to Build New Community Center
    The city of Bellevue, Wash., is now accepting proposals for the construction of a 33,000-square-foot community center. Bids are due at 11 a.m. on July 22, 2004, and should be sent to 11511 Main Street, Fifth Floor, Bellevue, WA 98009. The scope of work will include a double gymnasium, classrooms, a multipurpose room with full kitchen, fitness and exercise facilities, games area, and office space. The project is valued at $8.4 million. Bidders are invited to participate in a site walk from 10 a.m. to noon on July 8. For more information, view the bid notice.

    City of Tigard, Ore., Accepting Proposals for Electrical Maintenance Services
    The city of Tigard, Ore., is looking for firms to provide electrical maintenance services. Sealed proposals will be accepted until 2 p.m. on
    July 8 and should be sent to Joe Barrett, Buyer, Tigard City Hall Court Counter, 13125 SW Hall Blvd., Tigard, OR 97223. Contractors can download proposal packets on the Tigard, Ore., Web site. For more information, view the bid notice.



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    Zone Exclusives
    Testing Circuit Breakers Safely
    It's not hard to get hurt while racking in or racking out a circuit breaker if you aren't careful. John Kaldon, president of Broad Run Consultants, discusses the arc-flash dangers present in these situations and what you need to know to avoid them. Visit EC&M's Web site for the full article.

    Eye on Safety
    Electrical contracting firms can analyze and improve their safety and health management programs by reading a new guide designed for the construction industry. The Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) recently published a 118-page handbook titled "Construction Safety Management: Fundamental Components of Successful Safety Programs." The book provides tips on management support, pre-task planning, substance abuse testing, return-to-work plans, and finding a safe and qualified workforce. The guide also outlines the policies and procedures used by the safest firms in ABC's Safety and Training and Evaluation Process (STEP) program. For more information, visit ABC's Web site.


    ADVERTISEMENT
    NIMBUS™ Offers 190 Insulated Connectors. Configurations include single-sided or dual-sided multi-tap connectors as well as in-line or offset splicer-reducer connectors. Dual rated for copper or aluminum conductor, the offering is UL Listed and features removable plugs for entry port closure. Visit our web site at www.ilsco.com for additional product information.

    Shows and Events
    The Illuminating Engineering Society of North America Annual Conference
    The Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA) will bring together lighting professionals from different disciplines at its annual conference July 25-28 at the Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel in Tampa, Fla. The event includes two three-hour workshops on the topics of "Lighting Audio Visual and Video Teleconferencing Spaces" and "Marketing Your Services to Owners and Architects." For more information, view a copy of the conference brochure.

    National Training Institute Event
    Electricians, line workers, and datacom technicians can learn about new technologies and discover ways to increase productivity at the National Training Institute July 29-Aug. 7 in Knoxville, Tenn. The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) first organized the event 15 years ago to improve and extend the training of the attendees. Last year, the event drew 1,200 professionals, and the weekend trade show featured more than 90 manufacturers and service providers. View the NTI Web site for more information.

    Future Electricians of America
    Sixty-eight electrical students, dressed in yellow and blue hardhats and crisp tan uniforms, had six hours to successfully complete a residential electrical problem at the National SkillsUSA Championships on June 24 in Kansas City, Mo. Following the completion of the hands-on portion of the contest, retired electricians roamed the aisles to judge the students' work. Seventeen postsecondary and 21 secondary students also competed in the Industrial Motor Control contest. The students had to interpret a ladder diagram, bend conduit, and install motor control equipment and related enclosures, raceways, pilot devices, and circuitry. Bob Baird, technical committee chair and vice president apprenticeship and training, standards and safety for the Independent Electrical Contractors, Inc., says the students also had to participate in a 12- to 15- minute oral exam with a panel of electrical contractors to prepare them for the real world. "Many of these students have never been in a job interview," he says. "By doing the oral interview, they learn that good communication skills are extremely important in the electrical industry." View the medalists by visiting the SkillsUSA Web site.

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