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Upcoming Events

2018 Annual Event Calendar

Jan - 9-Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting

Feb - 6-BOD M

Mar - 6-BOD

Apr - BOD  / Industry Dinner Meeting

May - 8-BOD

May 25 - Mesothelioma Golf Tournament

June -12-BOD  

July - 10-BOD

Aug - No Meetings

Sept - 5 BOD Meeting

Sept - 7-10-TIAC Conference 

Oct - 23 - BOD Meeting

Nov - 15 - BOD / AGM / Dinner Presentation with Ronald Coleman (Executive Suites Hotel Bby)

Dec - 8 - Christmas Dinner at River Rock Casino Rmd.

Dec - 18 - BOD / BOD Luncheon

 

Monday
Sep102018

August 2018 E-News Bulletin

Click on the image below for PDF version.

 

Tuesday
Aug072018

July 2018 Between Newsletters Newsletter

Click on the image below for PDF version.

 

Tuesday
Jul312018

Fortis Announces New Pipe Insulation Rebates Program

Click document for the full 11-page PDF version.


 

Thursday
Jul262018

DANA TAYLOR: B.C. Needs Prompt-payment Legislation for Contractors

This article originally appeared on The Province

When was the last time you bought groceries and told Save-On Foods that they would have to wait a couple of months before you would pay them? It would never fly. Trade contractors in British Columbia — those who build the structures in which you live, work, play and study — must also pay their expenses on time. But to get paid for their completed work, they must routinely wait and wait and wait.

Waiting long periods to be paid leads to cash-flow problems for companies that are mostly small- to medium-sized enterprises and are often family-run. Squeezed cash flow discourages hiring, training and investments in productivity improvements such as technologies. Badly needed apprentices are not taken on and business that could grow, don’t.

Because the practice of delaying payment has been going on so long, it has become standard in the construction industry. “Pay-when-paid” contract clauses are now considered normal. The trades are often forced to accept these terms or lose the job.

Construction is a high-risk business and payment delays have the effect of shifting the risk down the chain of payment. Trades end up bearing the burden of financing construction projects. They must build this risk into their bids which drives up the cost of construction. Nationally, as much as $46 billion, at current volumes, remains unpaid past a 30-day period, keeping that money out of economic circulation.

We know general contractors are often waiting to be paid themselves, but shifting payment delays onto the trades means more risk is being taken by the little guys, those likely least able afford to it. All too often, this cash-flow crunch leads to personal hardship, including bankruptcies. If you are a tradesperson, this translates into bounced paycheques and/or absence of benefits like health insurance and pensions.

B.C. needs prompt-payment legislation to ensure contractors and subcontractors are paid in a timely way, within 30 days. It’s only fair. While payment delays are not unique to construction, the impact is significant. Construction represents 8.6 per cent of GPP and nine per cent of the provincial workforce so when construction contractors are not paid, the economy suffers. The issue is, or ought to be, politically neutral because if implemented, everybody wins, including the B.C. economy.

Prompt-payment legislation was adopted provincially in Ontario in December 2017 and is in the process of becoming law in Manitoba. The federal government has announced its intention to introduce legislation related to public projects soon. In other jurisdictions around the world, prompt-payment legislation is well established.

In B.C., the Council of Construction Trades Associations, a coalition of 11 trade associations, has launched Prompt Payment B.C., attracting construction and professional associations and labour together to lobby the provincial government for prompt-payment legislation. There is widespread support on this issue that impacts more than 16,000 trade contractors provincewide.

While the case in support of legislation is clear, a survey is being conducted to collect data in addition to a letter-writing campaign to MLAs. Our position strengthens with more industry participation. If this issue touches you in any way, please go to www.PromptPaymentBC.ca to complete the survey and send off your letter. Even those not in the industry can send a letter. Both actions are quick and easy and will help alert government to the scope of the problem.

Dana Taylor is the acting chairman of Prompt Payment B.C. and executive vice-president of the Mechanical Contractors Association of B.C.

Tuesday
Jul172018

New BC Crown corp to oversee labour for public infrastructure projects

This article originally appeared on www.news1130.com

by NEWS 1130 STAFF

BURNABY (NEWS 1130) – The B.C. government has created a new Crown Corporation to handle hiring and paying construction workers for provincial infrastructure projects in a move that’s being lauded by unions, but criticized by independent contractors.

Premier John Horgan announced Monday the province has signed a Community Benefits Agreement (CBA), which will make it a priority to hire people who live within close proximity to a construction project, Indigenous people and women, while paying union-level wages and having space for training and apprenticeships.

“Community Benefits Agreements ensure that projects will be on time, on budget, fair wages are paid to everyone and importantly that legacy of new workers for the future are part and parcel of the deal,” Horgan said following a tour of the BCIT Ironworkers Training Facility in Burnaby.

The BC Infrastructure Inc. (BCIB), has been created to oversee the CBA and to work with unions to hire labourers and manage things like payroll and benefits.

The new rules will apply to work on a new Pattullo Bridge, and the lane-widening projects on the Trans-Canada Highway between Kamloops and the Alberta border, according to Horgan. Transportation Minster Claire Trevena says British Columbians deserve to work on major projects that are happening in their own communities.

The BC Building Trades (BCBT) applauds the province’s decision, calling it a “good day for B.C. workers, families and communities.”

“Certain sectors of our province have been ignored for far too long,” BCBT director Tom Sigurdson said in a release. “Under a Community Benefits Agreement, these groups will have the opportunity to contribute and invest in their communities while essentially building B.C.”

The new format will prevent temporary foreign workers from taking positions which could have the possibility of being filled by a local, the organization said.

However, independent contractors fear a new Crown Corporation will increase bureaucracy, slow project and inflate the cost of projects for companies and taxpayers.

“What we’re concerned about is escalating costs and project delays,” said Chris Gardner with the BC Independent Contractors and Business Association. “We saw the same model used in the 1990s, the Island Highway Model. It didn’t work then, it’s not going to work now.”

As Horgan talks about a critical labour shortage in the construction sector, Gardener worries his non-unionized workers, which he says make up a majority of construction workers in the province, will miss out on job opportunities due to this new model.

“The government can’t take $1.4 billion for the Pattullo Bridge and siphon it off and only say only these 15 per cent of companies are going to have an opportunity to bid,” he said.

The province expects the agreement to add an additional $5 million to the more than $2 billion being spent on the Pattulo Bridge and Trans-Canada expansion projects, according to Trevena.

“The cost of making sure that we’re training the next generation of workers is one I think British Columbians understand,” Horgan said. “I don’t see any significant increase in costs beyond those that you would expect on billions of dollars worth of investment.”

“We’re in support of community benefits.We think any time a local community can benefit from infrastructure projects is fantastic,” said Rieghardt van Enter with the Progressive Contractors Association  “What we’re concerned about is some of the details mentioned where there’s going to be a separate crown corporation that’s going to be employing the labour force. Any time you add a new twist into the construction process, you add the risk of either injury to safety and also cost overruns.”

Both groups expressed concern about not being consulted before the changes were made.

“Nobody has a chance to work on those agreements or talk about it. It was really a behind closed doors thing and it kind of gives you the sense that there’s some backroom deals happening here,” van Enter said.

B.C.’s official opposition party isn’t keen on the announcement either, and calls it a “political payoff at the taxpayer’s expense.”

The Liberals say that the NDP is clawing back freedoms in the construction industry, forcing workers into a union membership they may not want.

“We’ve seen how the NDP has managed project labour agreements in the past–costs of the project go up, and taxpayers are ultimately on the hook,” says Jas Johal, BC Liberal Jobs Critic and MLA for Richmond-Queensborough in a release. “If history is any indication, this move will provide yet another example of the NDP not being very good at spending British Columbians’ hard-earned money.”

Liberal Labour Critic and MLA for Chilliwack, John Martin, is echoing Gardner’s statement.

“Excluding qualified companies from bidding on government contracts is unfair, causes needless delays, and inflates costs,” he says.

“British Columbians deserve better than this, for projects they care about and are paying for. A deal that is a payoff for past donations to the NDP is simply wrong. We need to see the best price, not payoffs.”