Thursday, September 13th
Short Pump Hilton
6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
A national firm with a local presence has been tapped to oversee construction of the massive data center being built in eastern Henrico for Facebook. DPR Construction has been chosen as the general contractor for the nearly 1 million-square-foot facility, which involves a $1 billion investment for the social media giant, at 5900 Elko Road in the White Oak Technology Park.
Facebook said work is underway on the site and DPR is accepting bids from subcontractors. A $220 million building permit was filed with the county Nov. 1 by DPR, calling for the construction of industrial buildings. To date, Facebook said, DPR has award-ed subcontracting gigs to three metro Richmond companies on the project: Rockville, Virginia-based Liesfeld Contractor Inc. for site work, ColonialWebb for mechanical work and Miller Electric for electrical work. Other subcontractors selected include Kansas-based Schufff Steel, Pennsylvania-based Lighthouse Electric Co. and Sterling-based Rosendin.
The first phase will consist of an H-shaped complex of two single-story, connected buildings. Documents on file with the county show three future buildings totaling 1.5 million additional square feet; however, a timeline for construction of the additional phases has not been released.
The Timmons Group has recently obtained its prequalification for right-of-way (ROW) acquisition services through the Virginia Department of Transportation. Less that a dozen firms in Virginia are prequalified for ROW acquisition. VDOT requires that ROW consulting firms be prequalified before providing these services on VDOT-administered construction projects.
In 2017 Timmons Group focused on expanding their ROW and easement acquisition capabilities. In addition to ROW services Timmons also expanded its infrastructure team to include bridge and structure design. These additions and expansions will help meet with the increased demands for infrastructure across the Commonwealth.
Congratulations to Allan Myers as the company was named by ENR MidAtlantic, a leading publication in the engineering and construction industry, as its 2017 Contractor of the Year. A key factor in ENR’s selection of Allan Myers is its “Home Safe Tonight” safety culture. Allan Myers boasts a 0.76 OSHA Recordable rate which is four times below the national average. Allan Myers safety campaign focuses on sending all of their workers home safely every night.
Allan Myers is a family-owned business that believes in contributing to the community and developing future industry leaders as it’s core values and along with their emphasis on safety, attribute to their success and recent record growth. About three-quarters of their business is transportation related with significant increase in recent years in the number of asphalt plants they operate. Congratulations to everyone at Allan Myers!
RAMCA is pleased to welcome these new members to the ever-growing and impressive roster of the association. Please take a moment to welcome their representatives to RAMCA when you see them at an upcoming RAMCA event. Green “New Member” ribbons on name badges identify new members at events throughout their first year.
We could almost write a weekly update with all the exciting news out of our partners at the Goochland CTE! RAMCA has partici-pated in the 1st quarter of 2018 in the CTE Advisory Council, the Career Fair with over 600 middle/high school aged students (RAMCA companies were 14 of 75 represented!), Business Roundtable with community leaders, and serving as student mentors. Several seniors in the Heavy Equipment Operator program have already been hired by RAMCA companies upon graduation.
Goochland recently announced the expansion of their 2 year Heavy Equipment Operator program into a 4-year Academy for Architecture and Construction. Since the below proposed course sequence, Goochland announced they will include Diesel Mechanics classes. They are also expanding to take students from Powhatan, and there is a wait-list for this program. Several RAMCA member companies have been instrumental in helping Goochland to develop these programs for which the administration is extremely grateful! Our continued partnership will help to create that pipeline of qualified employees all our members seek.
Goochland's CTE Academies allow students to experience high school education focused around specific career fields in aGoochland's CTE Academies allow students to experience high school education focused around specific career fields in ahands-on, problem-based learning environment. In each Academy, students learn alongside peers with similar careerinterests by taking core academic classes infused with authentic, Academy-specific application, along with specialized CTEcourses. Students will hove the opportunity toward the conclusion of each Academy to participate in a field-basedinternship or capstone apprenticeship. Goochland High School's CTE Academies allow students to exceed graduationrequirements, all the while preparing them for success after high school: work, college, oil that lies ahead.
Students in the AAC will have the opportunity to:
Proposed Course Sequence
The Goochland County High School Gymnasium was bustling with activity the morning of February 13th, 2018. Fourteen (of 75 total booths) RAMCA member companies set up booths and displays to present to over 600 middle and high school students. Our members talked about their companies and the career opportunities for these future career-minded students! The Goochland administration continues to be wowed by RAMCA members participa-tion. As we look to the future and long-term planning, these partnerships are key to spread awareness of the fantastic career opportunities right here in Central Virginia. These students are being trained to graduate from high school both career and college ready. More exciting updates to follow! Please enjoy the pictures!
Crystalline silica is a common mineral found in the earth's crust. Materials like sand, stone, concrete, and mortar contain crystalline silica. It is also used to make products such as glass, pottery, ceramics, bricks, and artificial stone.
Respirable crystalline silica – very small particles at least 100 times smaller than ordinary sand you might find on beaches and playgrounds – is created when cutting, sawing, grinding, drilling, and crushing stone, rock, concrete, brick, block, and mortar. Activities such as abrasive blasting with sand; sawing brick or concrete; sanding or drilling into concrete walls; grinding mortar; manufacturing brick, concrete blocks, stone countertops, or ceramic products; and cutting or crushing stone result in worker exposures to respirable crystalline silica dust. Industrial sand used in certain operations, such as foundry work and hydraulic fracturing (fracking), is also a source of respirable crystalline silica exposure. About 2.3 million people in the U.S. are exposed to silica at work.
Workers who inhale these very small crystalline silica particles are at increased risk of developing serious silica-related diseases, including:
COMPLYING WITH THE CONSTRUCTION STANDARD:
OSHA's Respirable Crystalline Silica standard for construction requires employers to limit worker exposures to respirable crystalline silica and to take other steps to protect workers.
The standard provides flexible alternatives, which OSHA expects will be especially useful for small employers. Employers can either use the control methods laid out in Table 1 of the construction standard, or they can measure workers' exposure to silica and independently decide which dust controls work best to limit exposures to the PEL in their workplaces.
Regardless of which exposure control method is used, all construction employers covered by the standard are required to:
Construction employers must comply with all requirements of the standard by September 23, 2017, except requirements for laboratory evaluation of exposure samples, which begin on June 23, 2018. See pages 16-17 for the OSHA Fact Sheets for the Control of Silica Dust in Construction.
Senator Dick Black (R-Loudoun) and Senator Barbara Favola (D-Arlington) have both filed legislation to raises the minimum project cost requiring the use of value engineering from $5 million to $15 million. The bill exempts projects that are de-signed utilizing (i) a design-build contract or (ii) the Public-Private Transportation Act of 1995 from the value engineering requirements. RAMCA supports these bills as raising the threshold ensures that value engineering is used in projects where it is most appropriate. The bills were combined in the Senate Transportation Committee, and after passing the Sen-ate with an amendment that made it apply to projects with an estimated cost of more than $10 million, it was amended again in the House General Laws Committee to move that figure back up to $15 million with VUHCC’s support. SB 125 passed the House of Delegates 100-0, and the amended bill was agreed to by the Senate 40-0. Governor Northam signed the bill into law on March 9th.
Senator Jeremy McPike (D-Prince William) has filed Senate Bill 651, which expands the requirement under the Virginia Public Procurement Act that any state agency's goals for participation by small businesses include a minimum of three percent participation by service disabled veteran businesses from when such agencies are contracting only for information technology goods and services to when such agencies are contracting for any goods and services. RAMCA opposes this bill. This bill passed the Senate 38-0, but failed to report in the House General Laws Committee Subcommittee #4 on a 3-3 vote. The sponsor was able to have the bill reassigned to House General Laws Subcommittee #1 where it passed unani-mously and then passed the full House General Laws Committee 22-0. The bill has been amended to apply to executive branch agencies, instead of state agencies, as originally drafted. The amended bill has passed both the House and Senate unanimously.
Beneﬁts and Wages
After initially failing to report in the House General Laws Committee, House Bill 375 by Delegate Glenn Davis (R-Virginia Beach) was brought back up for consideration. This bill prohibits local governing bodies from establishing provisions relat-ed to procurement of goods, professional services, or construction that would require a wage floor or any other employee benefit or compensation above what is otherwise required by state or federal law to be provided by a contractor to one or more of the contractor's employees as part of a contract with the locality. RAMCA supports this legislation, and spoke in support of the bill in the House General Laws Committee Subcommittee #4. It passed the House of Delegates on a 51-48 party line vote, passed the Senate General Laws Committee 8-7, and then passed the Senate 21-19. It is expected that Governor Northam will veto the bill, as Governor McAuliffe did in 2017.
Delegate Barry Knight (R-Virginia Beach) sponsored House Bill 823, which provides that a general contractor may not waive or diminish his lien rights in a contract in advance of furnishing any labor, services, or materials. RAMCA supports the bill. It passed the House of Delegates 98-0, and passed the Senate 38-0. The Senate companion, Senate Bill 319 by Senator Frank Ruff (R-Mecklenburg), passed the Senate 39-0, and recently passed the House Courts of Justice Committee 17-0, and then passed the House of Delegates 100-0. Senate Bill 319 has been signed into law by Governor Northam.
General Business Issues
Senator Bryce Reeves (R-Spotsylvania) filed Senate Bill 478 which provides that a contract entered into by a person under-taking work without a valid Virginia contractor's license is unenforceable by such person. However, the bill also prohibits assertion of lack of licensure or certification as a defense to any action or suit if the unlicensed contractor gives substantial performance within the terms of the contract in good faith and without actual knowledge that a license or certificate was required. RAMCA supports this legislation. A substitute bill was offered that states a construction contract entered into by a person undertaking work without a valid Virginia contractor's license shall not be enforceable by the unlicensed contrac-tor undertaking the work unless the unlicensed contractor (i) gives substantial performance within the terms of the con-tract in good faith and (ii) did not have actual knowledge that a license or certificate was required by this chapter to per-form the work for which he seeks to recover payment. After passing the Senate General Laws Committee and full Senate unanimously, it passed the House General Laws Subcommittee #2 and full House General Laws Committee unanimously. The amended bill has passed both the House and Senate unanimously.
WHEREAS, the underground utility infrastructure in Virginia provides for vital services to the citizens and businesses of the Commonwealth; and
WHEREAS, these underground utility lines are placed at the risk of damage every time someone digs in close proximity to the facilities; and
WHEREAS, each year, the Commonwealth and country’s underground utility infrastructure is jeopardized by unintentional damage caused by those who fail to call 811 to have underground lines located prior to digging; and
WHEREAS, the potential consequences of failing to call 811 include possible service interruption, damage to the environment, personal injury, and even death; and
WHEREAS, Virginians can call 811 from anywhere in the country and are encouraged to do so a few days prior to digging so that the local utility companies can mark the approximate location of buried lines with flags or paint, in order to prevent damage to vital utilities; and
WHEREAS, the Virginia State Corporation Commission and Virginia 811, working with all stakeholders , have developed a public education campaign using the “Dig with C.A.R.E., Keep Virginia Safe” message to increase awareness regarding safe digging practices; and
WHEREAS, the “Dig with C.A.R.E., Keep Virginia Safe” message was designed to encourage those who excavate to call 811, allow the required time for marking the underground utility lines, respect the marks and excavate carefully;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize April 2018 as SAFE DIGGING MONTH in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.
Whittington W. Clement—Partner,
Government Relations, Hunton & Williams
RAMCA held it’s March member meeting on Thursday the 15h at the Hilton Rich-mond Hotel & Spa/Short Pump. Whitt Clement of Hunton & Williams, was our guest and he reported on the 2018 General Assembly Session. Whitt is a Partner at the firm and head of the State Government Relations Practice Group representing RAMCA before the Legislative and Executive branches of Virginia’s Government. Whitt and his group assist by speaking before legislative committees and subcom-mittees, monitoring legislation, lobbying state policy makers and weekly through-out the session you received updates written by Robb Bohannon, a valued member of Whitt’s team.
Whitt received both his Bachelor’s and Law degree from the University of Virginia. He is a former member of the Virginia House of Delegates who served as Chair of the Transportation Committee as well as the Commerce and Trade Committee. His experience as a member of the House Appropriations Committee is a true asset as much transportation funding finds its way through appropriations. Last, but certainly not least, Whitt served as Virginia’s Secretary of Transportation from 2002-2005. Between Whitt and his entire team, RAMCA’s interests are in good, experienced hands!
In an effort, based on member feedback, to provide more time and a more condusive format for networking, we tried an entirely different format for this meeting. Instead of sitting down for a formal dinner, food was available throughout with open sitting options to encourage more mingling. The front of the room was set up theater style for members to sit during the 30 minute speaker session. Then it was back to networking and enjoying dessert and beverages. Based on the number of guests that stayed until after 9:00 p.m. I’d say this was a format that worked!
On Thursday, February 8th, a small but distinguished group of RAM-CA members made an inaugural visit to the General Assembly to meet with Delegates and Senators from districts encompassing either our businesses or our residences. With just a few weeks notice this group put together a schedule of office visits that included 7 Central Virginia Senators and 7 Delegates. As many of our member companies are located in the same districts, some representatives were visited by multiple RAMCA members that morning.On Thursday, February 8th, a small but distinguished group of RAM-CA members made an inaugural visit to the General Assembly to meet with Delegates and Senators from districts encompassing either our businesses or our residences. With just a few weeks notice this group put together a schedule of office visits that included 7 Central Virginia Senators and 7 Delegates. As many of our member companies are located in the same districts, some representatives were visited by multiple RAMCA members that morning.
The day began sitting in the House Transportation Committee Meeting. Their special guest was Transportation Secretary Shannon Valentine who addressed the committee as well as took questions. The group then dispersed to the various offices to meet with their representatives. Each group had a “leave behind packet” highlighting RAMCA and their own company. At noon we ventured high in the Capitol to sit in the Senate balcony and watch a full session in action. We finished the day with a debriefing lunch to discuss the various experiences and highlights. The overall conclusion was that it was a morning well spent and one that should become an annual RAMCA activity. We will begin planning in the 4th quarter of 2018 for RAMCA Day at the 2019 General Assembly!
Each Delegate and Senator was given a packet with a RAMCA “one-pager” (see below) highlighting who we are and what we do on one side, and featuring lists of all our Contractor and Associate member companies on the backside, a RAMCA brochure, and a “Save-the-Date” for the 53rd Installation of Officers and Legislator’s Night on May 3rd. These packets were distributed at the 7:30 a.m. meeting before heading up to the Capitol. Participants were encouraged to add promotional information about their companies and their business cards.
Knowing time in front of a legislator is really limited (not to mention it can take effort to get past their aid!) , the week prior to the appoint-ments, each company worked on an “elevator” speech. If you have 45 seconds and must introduce yourself and your company giving a brief synopsis of what you do and what issues impact your business, what would you say? Everyone’s prep work paid off with successful visits with all!
What a 2017 RAMCA had! I could not be more pleased or excited about the results of the first year as your Executive Director. One of the biggest undertakings was building a completely new website. Not only does the website now allow you to register and pay online (only if you choose, checks are still welcome) but it is has mobile and tablet friendly views so you can register anytime, anywhere. The site also allows Meredyth and I to do updates and create the events which is a cost savings to the association. The second big initiative of 2017 was to build RAMCA’s training programs. Please see Meredyth’s report for details. Training will continue to be a big focus for RAMCA as it provides great value to our members as well as non-members in the Central Virginia area and beyond.
In 2017 we saw terrific growth in our membership, a trend that has continued into the first quarter of 2018. See our Members in the News for details and be sure to be on the look out at our next events for the green “New Member” ribbons on the name badges. Introduce yourself and make all our new members feel welcome. Growth seems to have been a theme in 2017 as RAMCA saw record attendance at all our events. RAMCA also had a record year for sponsorships. We cannot thank all of our member companies enough for your support throughout the year. Whether you sponsor one event, multiple, or at the Diamond (new!), Platinum or Gold Club level, we are appreciative of every single sponsorship. Not only do they contribute to the overall financial health of RAMCA but they allow us to plan events at great venues, with great food, entertainment, and other touches that make the events memorable.
As we continue into 2018 you will see changes and additions as you, our members, let us know what you’d like to get out of the organization. We are working hard to collaborate with industry partners throughout Central Virginia. We will continue to support the Goochland Career and Technical Education program, work on introducing county and state funded apprenticeship programs, participate in additional business leadership roundtables which gives RAMCA a platform to communicate our members’ hiring needs, add new training initiatives and develop and grow our relationships with our delegates, senators, and the leaders in our municipalities.
Meredyth and I are here to serve you. Never hesitate to communicate to us anything you’d like to see for RAMCA. Your feedback and input is valued. We hope to see all of you at our next event on May 3rd, 2018. RAMCA with hold the 53rd Installation of Officers and Legislator’s Night.
I’ve had such a wonderful first full year with RAMCA! I have enjoyed working with Vanessa, getting to know many of the members better and I appreciate how welcome everyone has made me feel. Before I started, Vanessa told me how much she enjoyed working with all the mem-bers and after a year I absolutely understand how she feels!
Much of my focus has been on assisting with the planning and execution of RAMCA’s almost monthly events. From golf to dinner meetings to the Installation of Officers and Legislators Night, we continue to look for ways to change the format of the events or simply change a venue to keep things new and interesting. Working with members on the social and golf committees has been a great source of new ideas. Committees are open to anyone, please contact me to be added to the committee list. The Golf, Social and Membership Committees all recently met to work on the upcoming events. See details on pages 11-13 for all the second quarter events as well as some information about the new “Associate Showcase” being planned for September 13th.
My other priority is the growth of the RAMCA Training Programs. For several years, RAMCA only offered a First Aid and CPR class once a year. In January of 2017, RAMCA began offering monthly Erosion and Sediment Control Contractors Certification classes to RAMCA members and non-members alike. In 2018 we have added Basic, Intermediate and Advanced (as needed) Work Zone Safety with flagger certification. See the chart below for the classes we have scheduled. We will add more Work Zone Safety classes quarterly. If your company would ever like a private class (8 attendee minimum) either at your location or at one of RAMCA’s training locations, please contact me and we can set one up that works for your schedule. Be sure everyone on your team has all the necessary certifications before the big busy season is under-way!
Hope to see you at the next event!
On Thursday, January 11, over 70 RAMCA members gathered in the Tree Bar Room at Hardywood Park Craft Brewery to catch up after the holidays. Great beers along with a new venue made for a fun night for all who attended. Thank you very much to our “Buy a Round” sponsor, RJ Smith Companies!
Recently, the Henrico County Board of Supervisors heard an update on upcoming public works projects. The projects are coming from a mix of state, local and federal funding. Here’s a look at some of them:
On May 18th, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued the ﬁnal version of a much‐anticipated rule to expand overtime eligibility. This new rule will take eﬀect December 1, 2016 and, based on DOL estimates, will expand overtime eligibility to more than 4.2 million additional workers. The new rule focuses primarily on updating the salary and compensation levels needed for executive, administrative, and professional workers to be exempt. In particular, the ﬁnal rule: (1) increases the salary threshold for the standard White Collar Exemptions (from $23,660 to $47,476), and the Highly Compensated Employee Exemption (HCE) (from $100,000 to $134,004); and (2) establishes a process for updating the thresholds automatically every three years, beginning on January 1, 2020. Employers may include non‐discretionary bonuses, incentive pay, and commissions in calculating whether an employee meets the salary threshold‐up to ten percent of the threshold ($4,747). The incentive must be paid on a quarterly or more frequent basis to be used for this purpose.
PHOTO: Ryan Glasgow ‐ Labor & Employment Partner ‐ Hunton & Williams, LLP
Guest speaker was labor lawyer Ryan Glasgow with the Hunton Williams law ﬁrm who presented a thorough explanation of the new rule, and answered many questions from the membership as to its applicaon. Copies of his handout from that meeng are available by contacting the RAMCA oﬃce.
The State Corporaon Commission (which oversees enforcement of the Virginia's underground damage prevention laws) and at least one large gas company are interested in pursuing increases in civil penalties currently assessed against excavators for cutting or damaging underground utility lines in the hope that doing so will further reduce damages, particularly those caused by repeat and egregious oﬀenders. The SCC is particularly concerned about gas damages associated with horizontal directional drilling and RAMCA shares those concerns, but RAMCA staﬀ has informed the SCC that excavators are currently not in favor of such an approach and suggested that the SCC meet with all stakeholders to explore the current options for enforcement as well as discuss expanding those options to include new ways to address the problems created by these few bad actors. Eﬀorts are ongoing to reach some consensus about how to proceed and RAMCA will keep the membership informed as this matter evolves.