A bi-monthly news publication for AWI Manufacturing & Supplier Members April 5, 2007
Association News

Call to Action – Last Month to Participate in AWI CODBS

All AWI Manufacturing Members are encouraged to participate in the 2007 AWI Cost of Doing Business Survey which is open until May 1, 2007. Your involvement will strengthen the collective results not only on the national level but also on the regional level, where they will have even more value for comparing your company’s performance against industry averages.  

Submit your data using the streamlined submission tool at the survey Web site.  All data is held in strict confidence by Inverra, a benchmarking and management consulting firm that has administered the program for AWI for seven years.

All participants will receive a free CD-ROM with financial tools not available anywhere else.  Your company's data will be pre-loaded into various analytical tools.  Make sure you participate!
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AWI Planning Events at AWFS® Fair: AWI Members Also Gain Education Discounts

While you’re in Las Vegas, July 18-21, 2007 for the AWFS, plan now to attend the AWI Reception and Hot Topic Tables on Friday, July 18th at Harrah’s Las Vegas.  This is a great opportunity to make connections with other AWI members.

Don’t miss the seminar; “Scheduling the Custom Woodworking Shop” presented by AWI members Jeff Stück, Stück Woodworks and Matt Lundahl, Meyer & Lundahl.  This seminar is a component of the AWFS College of Woodworking Knowledge® Cabinet/Millwork track.  Overall, 52 education programs are scheduled during AWFS Vegas. Visit www.awfsfair.org to register.

AWI members will benefit from a 10% discount on all AWFS seminars.  Use code number – AWI599 – when registering. 
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Member News

You’re Invited – Costa & Grissom Machinery Company “Open House 2007”

AWI Supplier Member and 2007 AWI Sponsor Costa & Grissom Machinery Company is hosting its “Open House 2007” April 16-18, 2007 in Archdale, NC.  All AWI members are invited.  The Open House offers members an opportunity to listen to sanding experts, try out the equipment, and discuss solutions with experienced sales and technical service teams. 

For more details, see the attached flyer.  To register online, visit www.costagrissom.com
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Industry News

AIA Architecture Billings Index Dips Slightly, But Remains Positive

After three consecutive months of unexpectedly high scores, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI), a leading economic indicator of construction activity, dropped more than five points in February. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the February ABI rating was 52.5 (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings), compared to a score of 57.9 in January. With an approximate nine to twelve month lag time between architecture billings and construction spending; this news should not weaken a forecast that remains favorable for the nonresidential construction market throughout 2007.

To learn the ABI highlights for February, visit the AIA Web site.
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Remodeling Industry Poised for “Green” Growth, NAHB Says

Consumers want their remodeling projects green and remodelers have already answered the call, according to recent research by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Remodelers.
 
More than one quarter of remodelers surveyed by NAHB saw growing demand for green remodeling late last year, compared to just 6 percent reporting less demand. The majority of remodelers already incorporate energy efficiency into their work. Nearly all (85 percent) used low-energy windows, 68 percent used insulated exterior doors, 65 percent upgraded insulation, and 56 percent installed high efficiency HVAC systems.
 
The survey also showed that many remodelers also use environmentally friendly products. For example, more than 75 percent of those surveyed minimize the harvesting of old-growth forests by using alternatives to dimensional lumber, like engineered wood. Additionally, 65 percent already incorporate recycled or recyclable materials into their projects.
 
For more information about the survey, visit the NAHB Web site. 
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Professional Development

Career Development – Great Thinking on the Shop Floor

“So what advice should one give to a young person? By all means, go to college. In fact, approach college in the spirit of craftsmanship, going deep into liberal arts and sciences. In the summers, learn a manual trade. You’re likely to be less damaged, and quite possibly better paid, as an independent tradesman than as a cubicle-dwelling tender of information systems," says Matthew B. Crawford, author of “Shop Class as Soulcraft.”  The article praises the thinking on the shop floor.

Matthew B. Crawford is a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia and a contributing editor of The New Atlantis. For the 14-page article, visit www.thenewatlantis.com.  You’ll find the essay archived as No. 13, summer 2006, p. 7-24.
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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. Tap into your local AWI chapter for vital information that can help your business grow and put you in touch with fellow AWI architectural woodworkers and suppliers.

AWI New Jersey Chapter
When:
April 19, 2007
What: Cost of Doing Business Program
Presenter:  AWILL Ambassador Michael Quirk
Where:  Ramada Inn, Somerset, NJ
Contact: John Gehman, (P) 908.996.7866, jgehman1@verizon.net

AWI New Mexico Chapter
When:
April 19, 2007 (9:00 am – 2:15 pm, including lunch)
What: “Successful Installations - All Aspects”
Presenter: AWILL Ambassador Joe Sorelli
Where: Alburg, NM
More Information: See attached
Contact: Shelly Sharwood, sharwood@acie.com 

AWI Wisconsin Chapter

When: April 26, 2007
What: Plant & Forest Tour and Lunch
Tour: A tree to finished product tour of Kretz Lumber Company, Inc. – operating since 1929
Where: Kretz Lumber Company, Antigo, WI
Cost: $20 WI Chapter members; $40 non-WI Chapter members; lunch – no charge
Contact: Dave Nadolski, (P) 414.342.0531, dnadolski@ajpietsch.com

AWI West Texas Chapter
When: May 1, 2007 (11:30 am – 1:30 pm, including lunch)
What: Clinic and Forum on “Plywood vs. Particleboard” and Quality Certification Program
Where: Vista de Sol Conference Center, El Paso, TX
Cost: $60 until April 24, 2007; $100 on site (limited to first 60 registrants)
More Information: See attached
Contact: Bruce Spitz, (P) 915.833.9922

AWI Central Pennsylvania, Chesapeake & Potomac and Virginia Chapters & AWI National
When:
May 10, 2007 (10:00 am – 3:00 pm)
What: “Fundamentals of a Lean Enterprise”
Speaker: Mike Rothmeier of Simple Solutions Consulting (Biographic information)
Presentation Sponsor: Northway Industries of Middleburg, PA
Where: Frederick, MD
Cost: $60 Chapter members until April 20 ($80 thereafter); $95 non-chapter members
More Information: AWI Web site 
Contact: Teresa McCain, AWI National Director of Membership & Chapter Development, tmccain@awinet.org

AWI Chicago Chapter
When: June 14, 2007 (11:15 am- tee off)
What: 2007 AWI Golf Outing and Dinner
Where: St. Andrews Golf Club, West Chicago, IL
Contact: Ned Thompson, (P) 773.522.3633, nedthomp@thompsonfinishing.com; Ed Schavitz, (P) 847.417.1626, cuied@yahoo.com
Registration & Sponsorship:  AWI Chicago Web site
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Regulatory Issues

IRS Warns of Phony E-Mails Claiming to Come from IRS

On April 2, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) alerted taxpayers about Internet scams in which fraudulent e-mails are sent that appear to be from the IRS.

The e-mails direct the consumer to a Web link that requests personal and financial information, such as Social Security, bank account or credit card numbers. The practice of tricking victims into revealing private personal and financial information over the Internet is known as “phishing” for information.

The IRS does not send out unsolicited e-mails or ask for detailed personal and financial information. Additionally, the IRS will never ask for the PIN numbers, passwords or similar secret access information to credit card, bank or other financial accounts.

The information fraudulently obtained by scammers is used to steal the taxpayer’s identity and then his or her financial assets. Recipients of questionable e-mails claiming to come from the IRS should not open any attachments or click on any links contained in the e-mails. Instead, they should forward the e-mails to phishing@irs.gov (the instructions may be found on IRS.gov by entering the term phishing in the search box) or notify the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) at the toll-free hotline, 1.800.366.4484. The IRS and TIGTA work with the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) and various Internet service providers and international CERT teams to have the phishing sites taken offline as soon as they are reported.

For more details, visit www.irs.gov.

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Safety Matters

QuickTips from QuickTakes

Hand and power tools are a common part of our daily lives and are used in nearly every industry. It is important to remember that they may pose safety hazards, the Occupational & Safety Health Administration (OSHA) advises. That is why OSHA is encouraging employers and employees to recognize the potential hazards and identify ways to avoid them. OSHA passes along the following "tips" on how to control hazards associated with the use of hand and power tools in the workplace:

  • Keep all tools in good condition with regular maintenance. 
  • Use the right tool for the job. 
  • Examine each tool for damage before use and do not use damaged tools. 
  • Operate tools according to the manufacturers' instructions.
  • Use the proper personal protective equipment.

    OSHA's Safety and Health Topics page on Hand and Power Tools is a resource that offers more information on identifying the dangers of hand and power tools and safety precautions to prevent employee injury.

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Next Issue of E-briefs

The next issue of AWI e-briefs will be published April 19, 2007. 
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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.

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