A bi-monthly news publication for AWI Manufacturing & Supplier Members June 15, 2006
Association News

EVP Judy Durham Leaving AWI after 21 Years

AWI’s Board of Directors has announced the departure of long-term employee and Executive Vice President Judy Durham.  After 21 years of dedicated service to the association, Judy tendered her resignation on May 31 in order to fulfill growing family responsibilities that require a less demanding travel schedule.

Judy began her career with AWI in 1985 in the membership department as an administrative assistant and was promoted to Director of Administration in 1987. In 1994, she was promoted to the Executive Vice President position. During her tenure with AWI, it has grown from an association with a $1.2 million budget to a $3.5 million budget and from 519 to 1005 Manufacturing Members.

The AWI Board of Directors met on June 9-10 in Hartford, Connecticut, and at that time, along with their review of other association business, formed a search committee to seek a successor for the position vacated by Judy.  She will remain at the association until July 7 to ensure a smooth transition to new management.

Effective June 8, and until new management is announced, AWI President and Chairman of the Board Rick Kogler should be contacted about any issues not covered by the following staff whose responsibilities are: Katie Allen, AWI Office Manager (personnel, financial, insurance issues) and Phil Duvic, AWI Director of Marketing and Communications (all internal and external communications and staff assignments).

For more details about Judy’s tenure with AWI, click here.

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Continuing Improvements to Quality Standards

In case you ask...”How can I send in suggestions for changes and improvements in the quality Standards Illustrated?”  Use the electronic suggestion forms (also known as Page 10) at the Technical Resources – AWI Quality Standards Illustrated page of AWI’s web site.

AWI is always seeking input from members who use QSI regularly and who can offer input to make it more comprehensive.  Share your ideas.
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Professional Development

AWI Program Earned Continuing Learning Units for AIA Members

You can do it too.  Engage an AWI Ambassador and/or staff member to conduct a presentation like the recent successful program delivered to the Baltimore Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.  A three-hour program was sponsored by AWI Manufacturing Member and QCP participant firm Ilex Woodworking.  The 30 attendees received a copy of the Quality Standards Illustrated, 8th Edition, Version 2.0 book and CD-ROM, a copy of Veneer Solutions and a recent issue of Design Solutions magazine. 

In this presentation AWI Director of Quality Certification Randy Estabrook covered an introduction to the Quality Standards Illustrated, Lumber & Trims, Architectural Cabinets and the new LEED presentation developed by AWI's LEED Task Force.

This and other programs are available for scheduling from the Architectural Woodwork Institute of Lifelong Learning (AWILL).  For more information, contact Kimberly Haynes or call 571.323.3624.

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Industry News

Housing for IWF 2006 Will Become Scarce Soon

While there are still hotel rooms in AWI housing block at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta, accommodations during the IWF 2006 will become scarce after June 26 when the $130 room rate block is released. Thereafter, accommodations for IWF 2006, August 23-26, 2006 in Atlanta, GA, will be scarce.

Hurry to register before June 26 when rooms at the special $130 rate are released.  To make hotel reservations for IWF 2006, visit the “Calendar” section of the AWI web site.

You can also register for IWF either by using the downloadable form on the AWI web site or directly online by clicking here.  Discounted advance registration ends July 21, 2006.  After July 21, you must register onsite.  Avoid the long lines at the Fair; register in advance.
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Green Building Initiative™ Finalizes Technical Committee

The Green Building Initiative (GBI) has taken another step toward establishing the Green Globes™ environmental assessment and rating system as an official standard under the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), by confirming the final members of its technical committee.

Required under its ANSI-approved procedures, the 30-member committee operates separately from the GBI Board of Directors and staff, and represents a balance of users, producers and interested third parties. Chaired by Wayne Trusty of the Athena Sustainable Materials Institute, the committee is responsible for developing, maintaining, approving and achieving consensus on the Green Globes standard for the design and construction of environmentally sustainable buildings.

Check out the organizations represented on the committee at the GBI web site.
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USGBC Considering Wood Policy Changes

Two changes to the wood and biobased materials credits in the LEED sustainable building rating system are on the table for consideration. 

Changes which deal with rapidly renewable materials like cork and bamboo and which reward the use of wood-based products carrying third-party certification are being addressed by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Steering Committee.  The recommendations were the result of a September 2005 wood certification summit of member organizations of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), according to Reed Business Information. 

Click here, for more details including access to a white paper on the issues submitted to the USGBC Board of Directors by Alex Wilson, editor of Environmental Building News.
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Legal Matters

ASA Offers Tools for Avoiding Contract Pitfalls

One small mistake in a contract can cost a firm tens of thousands - or even hundreds of thousands - in lost revenue, legal fees and time.

The American Subcontractors Association Inc. (ASA) is providing subcontractors with tools to avoid contract pitfalls by bringing education directly into the workplace. The association will host a series of conference calls to help participants learn critical points of contract negotiation without even having to leave the office. Through ASA's "Critical Skills Series on Contract Negotiation," participants will learn negotiating tips from professionals at a fraction of the cost they would otherwise pay. The fee is $45 per call for ASA members and $65 per call for nonmembers.

Each one-hour conference call will address a particular critical skill that can help subcontractors save themselves from costly mistakes. The topics, such as "strategizing for reduced retainage" and "getting and using payment assurances," are based on ASA's national Stand Up! education program. The Columbus, Ohio-based law firm of Kegler, Brown, Hill & Ritter will facilitate the calls.

The series schedule is:

ASA's Critical Skills Series on Contract Negotiation 2006-07

--July 19, 2006 - Strategizing for Reduced Retainage
--Aug. 16, 2006 - Getting and Using Payment Assurances
--Sept. 20, 2006 - Negotiating Payment Terms
--Oct. 18, 2006 - Limiting Lien Waivers
--Nov. 15, 2006 - Preventing Hold-Harmless Catastrophes
--Dec. 20, 2006 - Evaluating the Risks of Insurance Requirements
--Jan. 17, 2007 - Understanding Material Breach of Contract
--Feb. 21, 2007 - Covering Your Bases in Case of Convenience Termination
--March 21, 2007 - Choosing a Dispute Resolution Method
--April 18, 2007 - Controlling the Costs of Disputes
--May 16, 2007 - Turning Back the Backcharge Blitz
--June 20, 2007 - Identifying Performance Bond Risks

The series is a continuation of ASA's "Critical Skills Series on Contract Negotiation" that began in 2005.

Each call will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Eastern time. ASA will provide participants with a toll-free call-in number and code when they register. ASA encourages subcontractors to sign up early, as space is limited. Register online at www.asaonline.com or call 703.684.3450, Ext. 1320, for more information.
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Legislative News

Estate Tax Repeal Fails in Senate

As expected, the U.S. Senate failed to end debate on estate tax repeal, dimming the prospects of full repeal of the tax in this election year. Some senators favor a permanent increase in the amount of a family-owned estate that is exempted from the estate tax for each spouse in lieu of repeal. President Bush (R) signed an estate tax phase-out bill into law on June 7, 2001, and as a result, the tax is gradually being reduced until temporarily repealed in 2010, reports the American Subcontractors Association (ASA). A "sunset" provision, however, will cause the estate tax to be reinstated in 2011 unless current law is reformed.  ASA is urging its members to contact their senators to press for changes to current law that will permanently repeal the estate tax or raise the exemption for each spouse to $10 million.  You may contact your senators using the contact forms provided online.
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New Tax Law Contains Good News for Subcontractors

On May 17, President Bush signed the Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act of 2005 (HR 4297) into law, extending and increasing important tax cuts. “The $70 billion tax cut package extends from 2008 to 2010 the increased direct expensing limit established by the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003. As a result, small businesses may continue to deduct up to $100,000 in depreciable assets, such as machinery and equipment, in the first year,”  the American Subcontractors Association (ASA) reported. If the increased expensing limit expired in 2008, the limit would have reverted to $25,000.

The tax cut bill also increases the exemption from the Alternative Minimum Tax and extends the reduced capital gains tax, ASA said.  For more information, contact ASA Manager of Government Relations Angela Lee at alee@asa-hq.com or 703.684.3450, Ext. 1321.
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Safety Matters

June is National Safety Month

June is National Safety Month, so celebrate with OSHA and the National Safety Council on the 10th anniversary of the occasion.   

NSC has adopted "Making Our World a Safer Place" as the theme for the anniversary. Activities throughout the month will address safety risks and include injury prevention tips for the workplace, driving, and the home and community.  Emphasis on workplace safety is the focus this week.

"OSHA applauds this focus and joins the Council in urging Americans to be vigilant to workplace hazards,” said OSHA Administrator Ed Foulke. OSHA currently has an alliance with NSC.  Click here for details about the goals of the alliance.

Consult AWI’s Safety Solutions to improve your workplace and jobsite safety programs.  To order a copy visit the AWI store.

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Resource for More Toolbox Topics

AWI Past President Bruce Cody offers a tip for an additional resource for Toolbox Talk Topics for use at your company’s workplace safety meetings at http://www.toolboxtopics.com/.  There are pre-planned safety meeting topics, tips, CD-ROMs, and more.  Drill down until you find what you need.
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In the Chapters

Chapter Events Ahead

What’s happening in local architectural woodwork communities?  Check out the informative AWI chapter programs sponsored in your area...Central Pennsylvania, Northeast Ohio, Great Lakes, Ohio Valley, and Wisconsin.

AWI Central Pennsylvania Chapter & AWI National
When:
June 22, 2006 – 5:45 pm – 7:45 pm, (during AWILL Career & Technology Education Week)
What: Quality Standards Illustrated/Quality Certification Program Workshop
Where: Pennsylvania College of Technology, Williamsport, PA
More Information: Audience? Design Professionals and Woodworkers; Two Learning Units for AIA National Members; Limited to 60 seats
Registration: Free of charge, Click here

AWI Northeast Ohio Chapter
When:
June 22, 2006
What: 15th Annual Golf Scramble
Where: Fowler’s Mill Golf Course, Chesterland, OH
Contact: Frank Zorman, (P) 216.831.0303

AWI Great Lakes Chapter
When: June 23, 2006
What: "Lean Manufacturing Symposium – Learn for Profit”
Presenter: Brian Brashaw, Natural Resources Research Institute
Where: Traverse City, MI
Contact: Pamela Howell, (P) 586.497.7522

AWI Ohio Valley Chapter
When:
July 22, 2006, 8:00 AM
What: Golf Tournament
Format: Four Person, Best Ball Scramble
Where: Legendary Run Golf Course, Cincinnati, OH
More Information: www.awiohiovalley.org

AWI Wisconsin Chapter
When: August 1, 2006, 11:30 am til
What: 2006 Wood Industry Golf Outing
Format: Golf, dinner, prizes and camaraderie
Where: Broadlands Gold Club, North Prairie, WI
More Information: Portion of registration fees will be donated to new scholarship fund for Woodtechnics students at Fox Valley Technical Institute (See attached)
Contact: Jim Reiter, (P) 800.236.6324

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Regulatory Matters

IRS Seeks Input for Reducing Taxpayer Burden

Tell the IRS what you think!  If you’ve often thought of changes to the tax preparation process that would make filings and payments less burdensome, the IRS needs your input.  Here’s your chance to offer proposals to the IRS Office of Taxpayer Burden Reduction. 

Use referral Form 13285A, Reducing Burden on America’s Taxpayers. The form requests a specific description of the problem as well as a description of the proposed solution and the type of taxpayers or businesses that are affected. More information on completing the form is available on the IRS Web site at IRS.gov.

Add your proposals to the “suggestion box.”
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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.

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UPCOMING EVENTS

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

International Woodworking
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Aug. 23-26, 2006
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AWI 54th Annual Convention & Meeting
Oct. 4-7, 2006
New Orleans, LA
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