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Industry News - September 2009

More Than 340 Attend Georgia Branch AGC’s Convention

The annual convention for Georgia Branch, AGC was held June 7-9 in Amelia Island, Fla., with more than 340 people attending. Speakers included AGC of America’s CEO Stephen Sandherr; Doug Pruitt, 2009 president of AGC of America and president of Sundt Construction; and Scott Shelar, executive director of the Construction Education Foundation of Georgia.

Chapter officers and board members were installed for the 2009-2010 year: They include: president - Dan Baker, Duffey Southeast of Cedartown, Ga.; vice president - Gary Newell, Collins & Co., Smyrna; secretary - Tony Pellicano, Pellicano Constructionof Albany; and treasurer -  Ken Swofford, Swofford Construction, Austell.

The chapter presented its 2009 SIR Award to E. Turner Collins for “a lifetime of distinguished service and individual contributions to the industry.” The association also presented its 2009 Build Georgia awards.

ValleyCrest Recognizes Employees for Safety Record

Calabasas, Calif.-based ValleyCrest Landscape Cos. presented 2009 Ford Ranger trucks to five employees across the country for superior performance in workplace safety as part of its 2009 National Safety Day.
Initiated as a safety incentive program in 2002, the annual Safety Day truck giveaway reinforces ValleyCrest’s commitment to workplace safety by encouraging employees to perform throughout the year accident free. To qualify, full-time field employees must complete one-year of service with no accidents and be employed by a branch that meets or exceeds the company’s threshold safety standards.

 “In challenging economic times, we recognize that there is an even greater importance in keeping workplace safety top-of mind,” said Richard A. Sperber, president and CEO of ValleyCrest, in a statement. “It not only makes sense for the well-being of our employees, it makes sense for our businesses.”

Two of the five recipients of the Ford truck were from Florida. They were: Humberto Garcia, foreman with ValleyCrest Landscape Development in Tampa; and Evelio Guevara, gardener with ValleyCrest Landscape Maintenance inHomestead.

ValleyCrest’s safety incentive program draws winners from a pool of more than 4,000 eligible employees who qualified across five different U.S. regions.

Hope Yet, for Homeowners Affected by Chinese Drywall?

A New York-based company is claiming to offer a product that can remediate the effects of toxic drywall for suffering homeowners. Electrocorp, an industrial air purification company, announced that field testing by a Florida company showed levels of hydrogen sulfide and other gases emitted from tainted drywall were reduced by 80% to 90% after only 24 hours of operating the company's air purification equipment.

Electrocorp has developed a customized carbon filter specifically to reduce the H2S and other gases that have been found to leach from what has now become known as toxic Chinese drywall. Tests have identified that the drywall emits dangerous gases, including H2S, which thousands of homeowners claim have made them sick. As well, these gases can corrode wiring and other metals.

Electrocorp has teamed up with Spiderman Mulholland, a forensic investigator and owner of US Building Consultants, which inspects buildings, diagnoses problems and recommends solutions.

KHS&S Contractors Opens Office in South Florida

Tampa-based KHS&S Contractors has opened an office in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The office is KHS&S’ third Florida location and its 11th in the United States. Other Florida offices are in Tampa and Orlando.

Willis A. Smith Achieves LEED Gold for its Own HQ

Willis A. Smith Construction of Sarasota, Fla., announced it has received LEED Gold certification for its recently constructed headquarters facility.

“Thirty months ago we began with the idea of constructing our own green facility,” stated David Sessions, president of Willis A. Smith Construction. “This certification is another important step in designating this firm as (a) leader in sustainability and green building.”

Among the items noted in the achievement of a Gold rating were: a rain water harvesting system that serves toilets and urinals, resulting in zero potable water usage.; a cool roof system that helps the building stay cooler; the use of solar power generated from 60 photovoltaic panels located on the building’s roof, providing 13% of the building’s electricity needs; and the use of an insulated concrete forms system in the construction, which allows for little heat infiltration during the summer.


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