February 14, 2006 A Prism Business Media Publication Vol. V, No. 3


CONTENTS
CMA Report Indicates Manufacturing Innovation Process at Risk

NJATC Creates Nationwide Network of Regional Training Centers

FM Approvals Publishes New
Product Updates

New Orleans City Council Replaces "Fast-Track" Ordinance With More Limited Law

Langley Air Force Base Seeks Contractor
for New Hospital Addition

County in New York Requests Bids
for Fire Alarm System

Business Brief

President Bush Proposes 2007 Budget Increases for OSHA

Engineers Week

IEC Annual
Legislative Conference

EGSA Spring Convention

2006 National
Manufacturing Week


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    Around the Circuit
    CMA Report Indicates Manufacturing Innovation Process at Risk
    The Council of Manufacturing Associations (CMA), a division of the Washington, D.C.-based National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), recently released a report pointing to the downward trends in U.S. manufacturing that may pose a threat to America's long-term economic growth and living standards. According to the report, "U.S. Manufacturing Innovation at Risk," there are five warning signs that show America's manufacturing innovation process is at risk:

    -Manufacturing output since the last recession lags that of earlier economic recoveries.
    -Manufacturing capacity remains underutilized, slowing investment in new plants and equipment.
    -The U.S. share of global trade in manufactured products has shrunk, falling from 13% in the 1990s to 10% in 2004.
    -While manufacturing continues to pay better than other industries, the sector is experiencing a broadening shortage of skilled workers.
    -While the United States continues to spend more than any other country in R&D investment, U.S. growth in R&D has averaged only about 1% per year in real terms since 2000.

    To read the full report, visit the NAM Web site.



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    NJATC Creates Nationwide Network of Regional Training Centers
    The National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC), formed through Bethesda, Md.-based NECA and Washington, D.C.-based IBEW, is in the process of creating a nationwide network of regional training centers. Each center will be staffed and equipped to keep union electrical workers up-to-date through courses covering such topics as computer technology, fiber-optic and photovoltaic systems, copper-structured cabling, and traffic signal operation. This year, sites have been established in Portland, Ore.; Pittsburgh; Detroit; and Birmingham, Ala. For 2007, sites are planned for Winter Park, Fla.; Omaha, Neb.; Commerce, Calif.; and Dorchester, Mass.

    FM Approvals Publishes New
    Product Updates

    Johnston, R.I.-based product testing and certification organization FM Approvals recently published its "2006 Approval Guide" on CD-ROM. The guide provides detailed engineering data and technical information on the application and use of more than 45,000 fire-protection products, building materials, electrical equipment, and services. The disc also contains more than 140 approval standards documents. For more information, visit FM Approvals' Web site.

    New Orleans City Council Replaces "Fast-Track" Ordinance With More Limited Law
    On Feb. 2, the New Orleans City Council passed a new ordinance repealing the previous "fast-track" inspections law that allowed any licensed Louisiana electrician or electrical contractor to conduct electrical inspections on commercial and residential properties. Under the new law, passed at the request of New Orleans-based Entergy, licensed electrical contractors meeting all qualifications of Chapter 27 of the 2000 International Building Code are permitted to inspect and certify that the work performed at any residential structure of no more than four family units is in compliance with the code, provided that the property owner signs a "hold harmless" clause designed to protect both the city and Entergy if the uninspected work proves faulty.

    The law also says that the city's Department of Safety and Permits may inspect any electrical work certified in order to maintain quality control. It also prescribes what documents electrical contractors and property owners must submit to the city before Entergy will be notified to turn on the power. The ordinance will be in effect until July 31. The newly prescribed forms are available on the city's Web site.



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    a New Level

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    Project Watch
    Langley Air Force Base Seeks Contractor
    for New Hospital Addition

    The Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk District, at Langley Air Force Base, Va., is soliciting bids for the construction of a 145,000 square-foot multi-story addition and an option for the renovation of a 25,000 square-foot facility at its hospital. The central plant renovation includes the replacement of the 167-ton chiller and associated equipment. The scope of electrical work consists of a 4000A, 480/277V, 3-phase, 4-wire double-ended switchboard. The magnitude of construction is estimated to be between $45 and $50 million. The deadline for proposals is April 4. To download the plans, visit the Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk District, Web site.

    County in New York Requests Bids
    for Fire Alarm System

    Nassau County, N.Y., is asking for bids for a contract that involves furnishing the necessary labor, materials, tools, equipment, and incidentals for the installation of an addressable fire alarm system, illuminated exit signs, and emergency lighting units in the Hempstead House, Sands Point Preserve. There will be a mandatory pre-bid meeting/walk-through at the project site Feb. 24 at 10 a.m. EST. The deadline for proposals is Feb. 28 at 10:30 a.m. EST. For directions to the pre-bid meeting and more information regarding the request for bids, visit the county's Web site.


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    Web Exclusives
    Business Brief
    On Feb. 6, Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy announced that it awarded an engineering, procurement and construction contract to the Shaw Stone & Webster unit of Baton Rouge, La.-based The Shaw Group Inc. The new 750MW supercritical coal-fired power plant, with a total cost of $1.35 billion, will be the third unit at Xcel's Comanche Generating Station in Pueblo, Colo. Shaw's lump-sum, turnkey contract covers "balance of plant" facilities, including the erection of the steam turbine and supplying and erecting associated plant systems, including piping, pumps, heat exchangers, and electrical equipment. In addition, the scope includes engineering and installation of concrete foundations and other civil and electrical works for the total facility. The new plant is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2009.

    For more Business Briefs, visit EC&M's Web site.



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    E-Mon D-Mon Submeters Contractor Certification Program
    Hunt Power is now offering electrical contractors the opportunity to become certified installers of E-Mon D-Mon products. One-day seminars focus on identifying the correct meter for the job, proper installation for both walk-up-and-read meters and advanced meters that tie into RightEnergy meter-reading software, and verification that meter installations were successful and systems are functioning properly. Annual benefits include a Web listing with Hunt Power, certification seal for use on business cards, and promotional material and access to dedicated product and technical support for E-Mon D-Mon meters. Sign up to learn more about this exciting new program at www.huntpower.com/ecm24.asp or call (866) 944-4868.


    Eye on Safety
    President Bush Proposes 2007
    Budget Increases for OSHA

    President George W. Bush's budget proposal for fiscal year 2007 includes an $11.2 million increase for OSHA, which would give the department $483.7 million for the fiscal year. Jonathan Snare, acting assistant secretary of labor for OSHA, said Feb. 6 that the request includes increases for federal enforcement, compliance assistance, and safety and health statistics. The budget also contains two major initiatives: Development of a new information system and expansion of outreach for Hispanic and other non-English speaking workers as well as for workers involved in the cleanup and recovery efforts along the Gulf Coast.


    ADVERTISEMENT
    NIMBUS insulated connectors from ILSCO feature single- or dual-sided multi-tap configurations in addition to in-line or offset splicer-reducer connectors. A new mountable version for use in troughs, wire ways, or panels has recently been introduced. 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
    Engineers Week
    Engineers Week (EWeek), founded by a formal coalition of more than 70 engineering, education, and cultural societies and more than 50 corporations and government agencies dedicated to raising public awareness of engineers' positive contributions to the quality of life, is scheduled for the week of Feb. 19. EWeek was initiated in the United States, but programs and materials are now also accessible to countries around the world, including Australia, Canada, Colombia, Dubai, Germany, India, Mexico, the Netherlands, and Trinidad and Tobago.

    Included in this year's program is "Connecting the World to Engineering," a global Internet initiative sponsored by IEEE-USA. The program consists of forums and live teleconferences that link engineering undergraduates and young engineering professionals with business leaders in the engineering community worldwide. New to the EWeek lineup in 2006 is "Connecting Educators to Engineering," a program that links engineers with educators to promote engineering careers in schools. Additionally, six training seminars will be broadcast live on the EWeek Web site in February.

    IEC Annual
    Legislative Conference

    All IEC members are invited to attend the IEC National 2006 Legislative Conference scheduled to be held from March 13-25 at the Washington Court Hotel in Washington, D.C. Speakers at this year's event include Congressman Sam Johnson (R-TX), Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), and Rich Galen, senior advisor to the public relations firm Manning, Selvage and Lee. For more information and to register for the conference, visit IEC's Web site.

    EGSA Spring Convention
    The Electrical Generating Systems Association (EGSA) will present its annual Spring Convention in Sarasota, Fla., from March 19-21. Seminars at the event include "Global Demand for Reliable Power," "Catastrophic Hurricanes and Our Changing Climate," "Disaster Preparedness," "Construction Trends: A Consulting Engineer Perspective," and "Emergency Power and the International Building Code." To download a PDF of the brochure for the 2006 conference, visit ESGA's Web site.

    2006 National
    Manufacturing Week

    The 2006 National Manufacturing Week is scheduled to take place at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Ill., from March 20-23. This year's application-oriented conference contains more than 250 all-new sessions and workshops covering topics such as regulatory compliance, power and energy management, new control technologies, and wireless and RFID. For more information on sessions and to register for the conference, visit the National Manufacturing Week Web site.
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