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March 31, 2008 A Penton Media Publication Vol. VII, No. 6

Construction Costs Outpace Other Inflation Measures

High Inventories Decrease Housing Starts

BIM Contract Provides Best Practices Standard

States Approve Green Legislation

Tenant Improvements in Wisconsin

Electrical Systems Replacement in Tennessee

Business Brief

Electrical Worker Dies in Trench Collapse

Enlighten Americas 2008

Electrical Safety and Reliability Conference & Exhibition

Battcon 2008

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    Around the Circuit
    Construction Costs Outpace Other
    Inflation Measures

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics' (BLS) producer price indexes (PPI), the prices for materials used in all types of construction plus items consumed by contractors, such as diesel fuel, climbed 0.6% in February, compared to 0.2% for the PPI for finished goods and 0.3% for the consumer price index (CPI), before seasonal adjustment. In February, there were jumps in the PPIs for many construction materials: 5.8% for copper and brass mill shapes; 3.5% for hot-rolled bars, plates, and structural shapes for rebar and structural steel; and 2.2% for diesel fuel. From December 2003 through February 2008, prices for construction inputs have spiked 31%, compared to a 15% increase for the CPI.

    To read more on this topic, visit EC&M's Web site.

    Three-Phase Power Quality Analyzer
    AEMC's PowerPad® Model 3945-B power quality analyzer measures true RMS single and three-phase parameters at 256 samples/cycle. The meter is menu-driven with direct access functions that are activated at the push of a button. It has a large, easy-to-read color graphical display and includes DataView® software FREE for data storage, real-time display, analysis, and report generation.

    High Inventories Decrease Housing Starts
    High home inventories will cause housing starts to decline 25% in 2008 from already depressed 2007 levels, according to a recent Skokie, Ill.-based Portland Cement Association (PCA) Economic Research report. PCA is predicting a 9.5- to 10-month supply of homes to be in "inventory" for sale by the end of 2008. The main contributor to the large inventory will be the large number of foreclosures caused by the sub-prime crisis, says Edward J. Sullivan, PCA chief economist. "Typically, builders accelerate start activity when the inventory supply reaches five months," Sullivan says. PCA is estimating that a significant improvement in inventory won't occur until the second half of 2009.

    To read more on this topic, visit EC&M's Web site.

    BIM Contract Provides Best
    Practices Standard

    Arlington, Va.-based Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) recently approved the addition of the Building Information Modeling (BIM) Addendum to the ConsensusDOCS catalog. According to AGC, the BIM contract is the first and only industry standard document to globally address the legal uncertainties associated with using BIM. Twenty-one leading associations representing owners, contractors, subcontractors, sureties, and designers that are actively supporting ConsensusDOCS have endorsed or are anticipated to endorse this standard document.

    To read more on this topic, visit EC&M's Web site.

    States Approve Green Legislation
    Washington, Oregon, and South Dakota are among the latest states to encourage renewable energy development and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire recently approved the Climate Change Framework/Green-Collar Jobs Act. Oregon and South Dakota will offer tax incentives for renewable-energy equipment and wind energy facilities, respectively.

    To read more on this topic, visit EC&M's Web site.

    ILSCO Product Line Expansion
    ILSCO has expanded its ACO line to include ACO-1000 with a wire range of 1000kcmil — 750kcmil. The ACO-1000 wire range includes 900kcmil compacted aluminum conductor and is manufactured from high-strength aluminum alloy. The off-center pin allows connectors to be rotated for parallel applications. The ACO line of aluminum offset pigtail adaptors is UL listed and CSA certified with a wire range 1000kcmil — 2/0.

    Project Watch
    Tenant Improvements in Wisconsin
    The Dane County Purchasing Department, Madison, Wis., is seeking construction services for tenant improvements for the third floor of the City-County Building. Scope of work includes electrical and plumbing, HVAC, flooring, ceiling, and drywall partitions. Submissions are due April 3. For more documents, register at the Dane County Web site.

    Electrical Systems Replacement
    in Tennessee

    The Tennessee Board of Regents, Nashville, Tenn., is requesting proposals for Phase 1 of electrical systems replacement in the Health & P.E. Building at Tennessee Technological University, Cookeville, Tenn. Scope of work includes new power service, power distribution system, and wiring devices. Proposals will be accepted until 3 p.m. CDT on April 9. For more information, contact Harold Damron, Vreeland Engineers, by phone at (865) 637-4451.

    Space-Saving Pull Box Ships and Stores Flat
    The EZ FORM Pull Box by Hoffman stores flat and out of the way in trucks or cribs, folding and snapping together in seconds when you're short a pull box. Save time spent on trips to retrieve an additional pull box — request a free sample today.

    Web Exclusives
    Business Brief
    Norwalk, Conn.-based EMCOR Group recently announced its Las Vegas-based subsidiary, Dynalectric Company of Nevada, has been awarded a contract to provide electrical construction services for a natural gas turbine generator project at the Nevada Power Clark Station, Clark County, Nev. Dynalectric is installing all project feeder cabling, bus duct, and controls between 12 new natural gas-fired turbine generators and the electrical control houses for each generator, in addition to all controls from the control houses to the master control room and three transformers for downstream power distribution.

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

    Great Prices on Cord Grips
    Starting from only $1.33, elecDirect Cord Grip Connectors are always in stock. Available with or without mesh grips in NPT, PG, or metric threading. Choose from aluminum, steel, or stainless steel materials. All connectors are UL listed and CSA.
    elecDirect stocks more than 13,000 electrical products and tools. Use Coupon Code EZONE308 at checkout to receive 10% off your next order. - or call toll free 800-701-0975.

    Eye on Safety
    Electrical Worker Dies in Trench Collapse
    According to several reports, city-contracted construction worker, Martin Samaniego, 37, of Hesperia, Calif., died on March 25 after sand collapsed the trench in which he was installing an underground power line to connect electrical substations in Banning, Calif. A team of investigators from state Department of Occupational Safety and Health and law enforcement agencies spent much of the afternoon inspecting the scene to determine if there was adequate shoring in the trench, official said.

    Last year, Samaneigo's employer, Pouk & Steinle, was fined almost $50,000 by the California Department of Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) after three people died as a result of a job-site accident, according to the San Bernadino County Sun. OSHA cited the company for violations that included failure to provide adequate safety instructions to new employees and failure by the work crew to warn motorists and direct them past a nighttime project. The contractor's spokesman, Mark Hanson, insists the firm follows safety standards.

    Check More, Fix More, Spend Less!
    The new Agilent U1240A series enables you to check more with all the DMM features you would expect to see and more. Maintenance tasks are greatly simplified with frequency and capacitance and dual temperature functions. And new features, like a switch counter, harmonic ratio, and differential temperature, further extend your capabilities with just a push of the button. Click to learn more.

    Call for Papers
    Enlighten Americas 2008
    The International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD), Chicago, is seeking experts in their fields to present workshops and seminars at Enlighten Americas 2008, the IALD Annual Meeting and Conference. This year, the conference will be held October 2-4 in Cancun, Mexico.

    The theme of the conference this year is "The Power of Light," and the intent is to initiate and/or continue dialog that evokes and provokes thought associated with what lighting designers do as well as why and how they do it. Who are lighting designers? What fuels enthusiasm for lighting design? What tools do lighting designers need to have a successful career and business? IALD is looking for speakers and seminars that will challenge traditional opinion about design, motivate attendees to think outside the box and reinvigorate the passion for lighting design. The deadline for submission is April 21. For more information, visit the IALD Web site.

    Shows & Events
    Electrical Safety and Reliability Conference & Exhibition
    The Professional Electrical Apparatus Recyclers League (PEARL) will present its 11th annual Electrical Safety and Reliability Conference & Exhibition from May 3-6 in Costa Mesa, Calif. Conference topics at this year's event include safety, electrical failure diagnosis, testing standards and techniques, and government regulations. There will also sessions for hands-on training as well as round-table discussions. For more information and to register, visit the conference's Web site.

    Battcon 2008
    2008 International Stationary Battery Conference and Trade Show (Battcon) is scheduled for May 5-7 in Marco Island, Fla. Presentations for this year's event include the effects of Hurricane Katrina on battery lead times, battery recycling, permanent load shifting and UPS functionality at a telecommunications site using the vanadium flow battery, and long-term results of battery capacity recovery processes for VRLA cells. For more information and to register, visit the Battcon Web site.

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