A bi-monthly news publication for AWI Manufacturing & Supplier Members March 2, 2006
Industry News

Architecture Billings Index Indicates Continued Positive Momentum for Construction Industry

The Architecture Billings Index (ABI), a leading economic indicator of nonresidential construction activity, was positive in January for the twelfth consecutive month, and fourteen out of the last fifteen months.  Based on the approximately six- to nine-month lag time between architecture billings and construction spending, business conditions appear favorable for the nonresidential construction market in 2006 and possibly into 2007.  The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the January ABI rating was 55.5 (any score above 50 indicates an increase), up from the seasonally adjusted score of 53.7 in December 2005.
 
“As the residential market shows signs of softening, the nonresidential market is in excellent position to pick up the slack in construction activity,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA.  “Nonresidential construction not only represents billions of dollars in economic activity, but also generates a lot of related spending in furnishings and interior decor.”
 
According to Department of Commerce figures on Construction Put in Place, spending on nonresidential construction in 2005 totaled $487 billion accounting for four percent of GDP.  The impact on the overall economy is significant considering that the AIA Consensus Construction Forecast Panel has anticipated close to five percent real growth in nonresidential building construction this year, with growth evenly balanced between the commercial / industrial and institutional sectors.
 
Key January ABI Highlights

  • Regional index breakdown: South (58.7), Northeast (53.8), Midwest (53.5), West (50.1)
  • Sector index breakdown: institutional (54.8), commercial / industrial (52.5), mixed (52.5) 
  • Billings inquiries index: 64.4, up slightly from 63.9 in December.

 
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Gearing Up for IWF 2006

The woodworking industry is gearing up for the International Woodworking Machinery & Furniture Supply Fair-USA®, August 23-26, 2006 in Atlanta, GA, and it’s time to start planning for your participation.  AWI has secured a block of rooms at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta and is offering them to AWI members at a special rate. 

Reserve your hotel accommodations now by using the special registration form  which will identify you as an AWI member.  Rooms are reserved on a first-come, first-served basis.  Don’t delay.
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Association News

Program Details Released for AWI Spring Leadership Conference

AWI members can expect to experience a solid lineup of business and leadership learning opportunities, including Plant Tours of AWI member shops in Maryland and Virginia, during the 19th Annual AWI Spring Leadership Conference, April 5-8, 2006 in Lansdowne, Virginia, just 12 miles from Dulles International Airport. Program information and registration details follow and are included in your March AWI Mail Package.

Business Program Lineup
The popular AWI Plant Tours will include visits on April 5 to The Washington Woodworking Company, LLC and Landover & Specified Woodwork Corporation. Plant tours will continue in the morning on April 6 at Jefferson Millwork & Design, Inc. and Sterling & Gaithersburg Cabinetry & Millwork.

Individual and group leadership sessions on April 6-7 will include:

  • Keynote Address and Performance Coaching Workshop - Ed Penney, Ed Penney Consulting
  • Time Management for Reducing Stress Workshop - Dr. Emily Sterrett
  • Emerging Issues – Ergonomics, Risk Transfer, Wood Dust - CNA speaker TBA.

Leadership Training Lineup

Craig Johnson will deliver a keynote address on “Group Leadership Skills” to kick off the training sessions on Friday, April 7.  Chapters will focus on chapter planning, the reasons for and relevance of AWI chapters, chapter plans of action, AWI Tool Kit, and internal and external audiences of chapters. Distinguished Chapter Awards will be presented.

AWI National Development Council

Council members will hear reports from AWI President Rick Kogler of Architectural Wood Products, Inc., including the State of AWI Chapter Health and Executive Report on Board of Directors actions in the last six months.  AWI program evaluation will be led by the association’s Marketing Committee. Roundtable discussions will focus on the President’s four critical questions for evaluating programs.

Accommodations & Registration

For full details about the learning and leisure sessions April 5-7, see the attached brochure.  To register for the Spring Conference, use the convenient form attached.

The conference will be held at the National Conference Center in Lansdowne, VA, only 12 miles from Dulles International Airport. The facility will be serving members with sleeping room accommodations, but space is limited at the facility.  Reserve your room and register for the conference by March 22, 2006 to assure your place.

Rooms at the National Conference Center include all breakfast, lunch and dinner meals and are reasonably priced at $179+ taxes per person, per day for single occupancy with one standard double bed.  A second person in the room raises the costs to only $69+ taxes per person per day additional charge.  (Sorry – there are no queen-size or king-size bed options available).

To reserve your room by the March 22, 2006 deadline, visit https://resweb1.passkey.com/Resweb.do?mode=welcome_gi_new&groupID=58090.

Who Should Attend?

Don’t miss the conference, if you are a leader in your company or community, a current and future AWI chapter leader, an AWI member with a need to learn about how other plans succeed. 
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Compelling Reasons to Participate in the AWI Cost of Doing Business Survey: One in a Series of Four

With all the special rewards of participation, plus reliable, credible industry results for use in your everyday business, there is every reason to participate in the 2006 AWI Cost of Doing Business Survey (CODBS). 

Here’s the first of four good reasons. Reason 1.  Why wouldn’t you given all the special benefits!  For details, visit http://www.inverra.com/awi/2006survey/codbs_benefits.htm.

The 2006 AWI Cost of Doing Business Survey has been accepting submissions since February 1, 2006.  It’s time to get serious and finish your survey data entry!

  • “But I’ve already submitted my data” … Great!  You have helped improve the validity of your regional and chapter results.  Thanks for your continued support of this important AWI member-only benefit.  Your special package will be mailed on or around 6/1/06.
  • “But I don’t understand why I should participate” … The question should really be, “why wouldn’t you,” given the special benefits only participants receive!  Click the link above under Reason 1 to see all the reasons why you should participate and then get started!
    http://www.inverra.com/awi/2006survey/codbs_benefits.htm.

To get started, download the submission form.  It’s easy, follow this link.
http://www.inverra.com/awi/2006codbs.htm.  Remember, submissions are due no later than 4/1/06.
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QSI, 8th Edition, Version 2.0 Just Released!

A revised edition of Quality Standards Illustrated – 8th Edition is now available as a benefit of membership to all AWI members. The updated Version 2.0 is available on request by AWI members.  A complimentary copy in either book or CD-ROM format is available by completing the form enclosed with the March issue of AWI NewsBriefs. Click here to download a list of QSI 8th Edition changes from Version 1.0 to the new Version 2.0.

Claim your copy now!  And while you’re at it, order a caseload (12 per case) of QSI – 8th Edition, Version 2.0 at the low AWI member price. Details are on the order form. Consider offering copies of Version 2.0  to your design professional colleagues.
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About QCP

QCP Extends Enforcement Deadline for Minimum Label Fee Increase

The QCP Board of Review is pleased to announce that the deadline for complying with the increase in the minimum label fee has been extended and is now effective on all projects bid on or after April 1, 2006.

The extension will give all certified firms ample time to comply with the increase in the minimum label fee. In October 2005, the QCP Board of Review voted to raise the minimum label fee to $500 per project. Questions may be directed to kthorp@awinet.org.
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Safety Matters

Safety Awards Program Invites Applicants – And All Get a Bonus

Have you entered the 2006 AWI/CNA Safety Awards Program yet? Application is very simple and takes about 10 minutes of your time. Go to http://www.inverra.com/awi/2006safety.htm and enter today. 

All AWI Manufacturing Members who submit entries will receive a bonus this year: a comprehensive report on survey results.  

And, entrants who do not receive an award will be provided with the survey results to compare their safety records against the results of other AWI Manufacturing Member applicants.  Most importantly, non winning applicants will be advised of what they can do in the future to improve their safety records and win.

The application period is open until April 1, 2006.
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Regulatory Issues

Business & Hurricane Katrina Taxpayers Get Filing Extensions

The Internal Revenue Service has simplified the process for business taxpayers filing for an extension.

All business taxpayers who previously filed extension forms 8800, 8736, 7004, and 2758 will now only need to file the revised Form 7004, "Application for Automatic 6-Month Extension of Time to File Certain Business Income Tax, Information, and Other Returns,” to request an automatic extension of time to file. The revised Form 7004 grants taxpayers an automatic six-month extension without the need to file intervening forms. 

For the 2005 filing season, business taxpayers must file Form 7004 by the due date of the return in order to receive an automatic six–month extension of time to file. The extension period is calculated from the due date of the return.

An extension of time to file is not an extension of time to pay. Taxpayers will owe interest on any past due tax and may be subject to a late payment penalty if payment is not made by the due date of the return.

Simplifying, consolidating, and standardizing extension forms is expected to reduce taxpayer burden and will also reduce taxpayer confusion and error about filing the correct form, says the IRS.  For more about this change and others, as well as access to forms, visit http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=154554,00.html


Extension for Hurricane Katrina Victims

The Internal Revenue Service also is postponing taxpayer filing and payment deadlines for affected taxpayers hit hardest by Hurricane Katrina.

Individual and business taxpayers in the most severely damaged parishes and counties of Louisiana and Mississippi automatically have through Aug. 28, 2006, to file returns and make certain tax payments that had a due date or extended due date on or after Aug. 29, 2005, and on or before Aug. 28, 2006. In addition, the failure to deposit penalty will be waived for taxpayers in these areas who are unable to make their deposits during this time period.

The automatic postponement applies to taxpayers in the following Louisiana parishes: Cameron, Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, and St. Tammany.

The postponement also applies automatically to taxpayers in the following Mississippi counties: Hancock, Harrison and Jackson.

For more details about affected taxpayers and filing assistance, visit
http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=154615,00.html.

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Professional Development

Accolades for Winter Career and Technology Education Week

Feedback by attendees indicates a successful launching and execution of AWILL Winter Career and Technology Education Week, Feb. 22-25 in Charlotte NC.  Several attendees share their perspectives:

  •  “Five of us attended: my partner and I spent the full four days there; two new PM’s joined us for three days, and our new estimator spent his first two days on the job with us in NC.  All were very excited about the learning and networking opportunities.”
  • “The plant scheduling seminar was very well put together, informative and well worth the time.
  • “I was especially pleased with the software shootouts...Quite a good overview of the options available to us.”

Eleven programs attracted 119 attendees.  Sixteen companies sent at least two representatives.  Several other companies sent from three to eight representatives.

Tabletop displays were hosted by Alliance Millsoft, Hafele Americas, Microvellum/Roger Shaw Associates, People Logic Software, Tesko Enterprises, Tradesoft, Stiles Machinery and Trakware Systems.

Save the date for the Summer Career and Technology Education Week, June 2024, 2006, Williamsport, PA.  Watch for special announcements and news in AWI e-briefs.  And, log onto http://homepage.mac.com/gheuer212/AWILL.
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Next issue of AWI e-briefs

The next edition of AWI e-briefs will be published on March 16, 2006.
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Founded in 1953, AWI is a nonprofit organization representing over 3,500 manufacturers, suppliers, and design professionals in the architectural woodwork industry.

AWI Mission:
The authoritative resource for excellence in architectural woodwork.

Copyright Architectural Woodwork Institute www.awinet.org


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UPCOMING EVENTS

AWI Spring Leadership Conference
Apr. 5-8, 2006
Landsdown, VA
Register Today!

AWILL Summer Career & Technology Education Week
Jun. 20-24, 2006
Williamsport, PA
Save the Date!