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The Department of Labor’s proposal to implement Executive Order 13658 establishing a minimum wage for federal contractors raised concerns which were outlined in comments ABC submitted July 28. Under the proposal, beginning Jan. 1, 2015, the hourly minimum wage paid by contractors to workers performing on covered federal contracts would be $10.10 per hour. In the comments, ABC states the proposal should be withdrawn or substantially modified.

Social media is a tricky, complex form of communication; One that takes a lot more time and effort to be effective than people realize. When a company can’t understand why their social media efforts aren’t working, there might be a variety of reasons why. Here are four ineffective tactics that many companies will find themselves violating and should stop doing to try to increase their success online.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released draft forms on July 24 that employers will use to report on health coverage they offer to their employees, also known as information reporting requirements under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), effective for the 2015 calendar year. Employers with 50 or more full-time employees and full-time equivalent employees are encouraged to learn more about the draft reporting forms by viewing an analysis prepared by Littler Mendelson, P.C.

In order to successfully define and implement workforce development initiatives to best serve ABC members, contractors are invited to take part in a new survey related to training. Three randomly selected participants will be awarded $500 American Express gift cards once the survey is closed.

The Intent to Compete forms for the 2015 National Craft Championships are now available online for ABC members and chapters who think their apprentices and craft trainees have what it takes to win the national title of ABC’s  craft champions. The competition will take place March 3-6 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. and Intent to Compete forms are due by Dec. 1, 2014.The 2015 competition will feature the following crafts:

July 14, an updated document on Enforcement Guidance on Pregnancy Discrimination and Related Issues was released by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Littler Mendelson, P.C., has issued an analysis, which includes some important compliance steps employers should take. 

President Obama issued Executive Order 11246 July 21, which prohibits federal contractors from discriminating against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) employees and prohibits discrimination based on gender identity in federal employment. The executive order affects federal contractors and federally-assisted construction contractors and subcontractors who do over $10,000 in government business in one year.

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) was signed into law July 22 and has the potential to create great opportunities for ABC members who have been looking for skilled workers to fill the labor shortage. Here’s how it directly affects ABC members:

In the July 16 ruling of Merit Construction Alliance v. City of Quincy, the First Circuit Court of Appeals found that the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) preempts a controversial city ordinance that forced contractors to “engage in a bona fide apprentice training program" registered with the Massachusetts Department of Labor Standards as a condition of bidding for city work.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is looking for responses to two surveys regarding the potential use of government-mandated project labor agreements (PLA) on projects in Hawaii and Washington. In addition, the U.S. Navy’s Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) is requesting comments on a PLA survey for a project in California.

OSHA has released an updated list of almost 500 industry groups that are exempt from programmed safety inspections for FY2015; the list includes five construction-related North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes. An employer would be exempt from a programmed inspection when there are 10 or fewer employees at a worksite.

With six short months before the Terrorism Risk Insurance act (TRIA) is set to expire, the U.S. Senate voted 93-4 to pass the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2014 (S. 2244) which would ensure the construction industry is able to secure affordable terrorism insurance for seven more years.

The modern construction jobsite office (or trailer) is evolving every day. The old days where a field superintendent rents a small connection box with a roll-up door for tool access and a small corner desk are gone. The status quo today appears to be a 40 by 10 ft. mobile trailer with a bathroom and office space at each end, fully equipped with the latest gadgets.

Updated summaries of employer requirements included in the Affordable Care Act are available for ABC members in reference documents provided by Washington Council Ernst & Young. The documents are available in the Health Care Law Employer Toolkit (login required) on ABC’s website.

With the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) moving forward with a rulemaking to expand its existing Lead Renovation and Repair Painting rule to include public and commercial buildings, ABC, as a part of the Commercial Properties Coalition, submitted comments on EPA’s framework for identifying and evaluating lead-based paint hazards from renovation, repair, painting activities in public and commercial buildings.

Over the next two years, contractors expect the percentage of their work that involves BIM to increase by 50%, on average, according to 2013 McGraw Hill Construction data. Because of this, every construction owner should be learning how to incorporate BIM into their business. Here are two reasons why.

The Leadership Conference, Nov. 11-13 in Miami, Fla., will provide the opportunity for incoming and current board members, chapter staff, industry attorneys and ABC student chapters to learn what it takes to be a successful leader at ABC and in their careers. Attendees will share lessons learned, discover new ways to encourage business growth, and build relationships with industry peers. Here’s who should attend the conference:

FedEx wants to help celebrate ABC members’ hard work and accomplishments by automatically signing them up to receive an exclusive offer every week from FedEx Fridays until Sept. 5 when they enroll in the FedEx Advantage® discount program.

Through 30 different national committees, more than 300 individuals from ABC member companies are helping to address issues of concern to the merit shop construction industry and guide the association in delivering high-quality services to members and chapters.  Here are the top three reasons to get involved in an ABC National committee:

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) placed into effect an interim enforcement policy until Oct. 31 which delays enforcement of most new requirements  of the Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution and Electrical Protective Equipment final rule for employers who are complying with the existing General Industry rule.

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