A bi-monthly news publication for AWI Manufacturing & Supplier Members July 6, 2007
Association News

AWI Receives $92K Grant for Skill Standards Development

Work has begun on a major AWI initiative for development of Woodwork Skill Standards, Evaluations, and Credentials made possible by a $92,000 grant from the USDA Forest Service. AWI will be the Secretariat of this industry effort.

The initiative will proceed under the banner of a new 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable and educational foundation with the name Woodwork Career Alliance of North America. "The forms have been completed and are being submitted to the State Corporation Commission for the Commonwealth of Virginia," says project champion Scott Nelson.

An international Industry Advisory Group is being formed to manage the corporation and to begin the technical writing. Anyone interested in knowing more or volunteering to help should contact the project’s manager Greg Heuer via e-mail at awinet.org.

Read all about the terms of the grant, the project goals, and the multi-phase components of the project in the July issue of NewsBriefs coming to your mailbox the week of July 16.
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AWI Releases Final Cost of Doing Business Survey Report

The AWI Cost of Doing Business Survey and Compensation Study Report was shipped to all AWI Manufacturing Members on July 2 offering key insights into the financial health of architectural woodwork industry manufacturers. The annual survey report contains insights about operating profit, gross margins, and more against which all AWI Manufacturing Members can measure their company’s performance.  Watch your mailbox for delivery, if it has not yet arrived.

Take a test ride of the financial dashboard to see how you can benefit from this great e-tool.

Companies that participated in the study this year will also receive a new "Financial Dashboard" summarizing the financial health of their company. This dashboard is interactive and enables executives to quickly click their way into 15 key financial measures.  More than 100 additional measures are included for those of you who are financial power-users!  Click here to test drive what each of the participants received.   Participants who have questions on how to use the tool or wish to have their company’s dashboard maintained on a monthly basis should contact Inverra, the survey firm, at dashboard@inverrra.com.

Your July AWI member mailing contains an insert about the benefits of this important AWI Manufacturing Member benefit. Information should be delivered to your mailbox the week of July 16 with the July issue of AWI NewsBriefs.

 
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2007 Member Survey Launched – Let Your Voice Be Heard

AWI is seeking input from all primary contacts of AWI Manufacturing Member companies about association programs, projects and products.  Follow the links in the e-mail sent to you July 5 to complete the online survey. 

The 2007 AWI Member Survey will be used by the association’s Board of Directors, committees, and staff to analyze the importance and performance levels of the programs, projects and products rated by AWI Manufacturing Members. 

Your feedback is important. The survey period closes at 11:45 pm EST July 31, 2007.

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AWI Nominating Committee Conducts Run-Off Election for One AWI Director’s Seat

On July 9, AWI Manufacturing Members will be invited to respond to an e-mail containing important information about the slate of AWI Officer Candidates and Board of Directors seats for 2007-2008. Due to the availability of one additional vacant seat on the 2007-2008 board, AWI Manufacturing Members will be asked to break a tie vote for two candidates for the same seat:  Skip Heidler and Rick Kogler.

The e-mail will contain important messages from both candidates to all AWI members.  Voting opens on July 9, 2007 and closes at 11:59 pm EST on July 25, 2007.  
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AWI Welcomes CNA as a Major Sponsor for 2007

AWI extends a warm welcome and appreciation to its insurance safety partner CNA who joined the ranks of other corporate contributors to AWI in 2007 as a Major Sponsor.  Visit CNA at the company’s Web site, www.cna.com, to check out their insurance programs. 

All AWI sponsors can be reached easily by clicking on their logos at right. 

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Call for Submissions for AWI “Award of Excellence” Program

The award-winning projects of AWI “Award of Excellence” honorees are seen by nearly 25,000 architect and design professional subscribers to Design Solutions. All AWI Manufacturing Members are eligible to apply for an “Award of Excellence.”  The deadline for submissions for the fall “Award of Excellence” Program is August 1.

Don’t miss the opportunity to have your outstanding project showcased to nearly 25,000 architects and design professionals who may be searching for your kind of expertise and creativity.  Click here for details and submission forms.

Pictured here is one of the winning AWI Manufacturing Member projects in the spring AWI “Award of Excellence” competition – the waiting room of the Emergency Department Renovation project for Rush-Copley Medical Center.  Woodwork was done by Woodmill Products, Inc. of New Berlin, WI.  The waiting area walls are clad in deep chocolate Cherry wood for serenity.

Photo Credit: Mark Ballogg

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Professional Development

Fall AWI Education Program Features Faculty of Industry Veterans

Join us for the fall sessions offered by AWI Lifelong Learning, September 13-15, 2007, in Seattle, WA. All courses offered are fundamental to the efficiency and profitability of the business of architectural woodwork.

Some of the best and brightest architectural woodwork industry veterans will share their years of experience and knowledge of best practices. Don’t miss these sessions.

Contracts – Protection and Prevention (NEW)
Faculty – AWI Past President Joe Sorrelli, NY

Fundamentals of Project Management
Faculty: Frank Zorman, OH; Rick Thaler, NM

Two-day Advanced Project Management
Faculty: Randy Lange, WI; Greg Kasten, GA; Matt Lundahl, AZ; Jeff Stück, WI

Fundamentals of Estimating
Faculty: AWI Past President Scott Nelson, NE; Tony Perno, NM

Two-day Advanced Estimating
Faculty: Mike Bell, KY; Jim Broich, IA; John Leininger, KY; Bruce Spitz, TX.

Early bird tuition rates are in effect through August 17. Rates increase by $100 per person per day thereafter.  Register early – seating is limited to allow for maximum interaction between faculty and attendees and among participants. Please contact Ilaria Fekeza, ifekeza@awinet.org or call 571.323.3636 for registration and more information.
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Forest Products Career Awareness Fair Set for Wood Week 2007 at Virginia Tech

Industry partners are invited to join the Department of Wood Science and Forest Products of Virginia Tech for its Third Annual Wood Week Career Awareness Fair.  The event will be held on September 6, from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm on the Drillfield of the main Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, VA. 

The Fair is aimed at building awareness among university students of careers in forest products and related industries and serves as a pathway for students to learn about job opportunities, summer jobs, internships and the university’s degree program.

For more details about the Career Fair, click here.

Registration opens Monday, July 9 via the Web link www.woodscience.vt.edu/woodweek.
 
Additional information on other Wood Week 2007 at Virginia Tech activities will be posted at www.woodscience.vt.edu/woodweek beginning July 9.

On Saturday, September 8 Virginia Tech in association with the Virginia Forest Products Association (VFPA) will host the first Virginia Forest Products Industry Technology Conference.  Information on this one-day conference will be available in the coming week via the Web link, www.woodscience.vt.edu/woodweek.
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Safety Matters

AWI & CNA Honor 37 AWI Manufacturing Members for Safety

AWI and CNA, its insurance safety partner, have announced that 37 AWI Manufacturing Members will be honored with a 2007 AWI/CNA Safety Award.  A total of 49 awards will be given to the honorees who competed for three awards in four categories based on work hours.

The honorees will be recognized by AWI’s Officers, Board of Directors and peers during the 55th AWI Annual Convention/Executive Conference, October 3-6, 2007 in Louisville, KY.  The awards validate the commitment of these honorees to employee safety on the job and recognize the strong safety programs and team work that contributes to the safe work environments within these companies.

To learn the winners of the “Best Safety Achievement Awards”, the “Zero Lost Time Accident Achievement Awards,” and “The Safety Improvement Recognition Awards,” watch for the July issue of AWI NewsBriefs coming to your mailbox the week of July 16.

 
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Industry News

New California Air Resources Board Formaldehyde Regulation

A new regulation announced in April 2007 by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) implements new limits for formaldehyde emitted from composite wood products. Implementation will be in two phases starting January 1, 2009.  

According to a Fact Sheet prepared by the Composite Wood Association (CWA), the regulation governs the formaldehyde in both raw composite wood panels and finished products sold or used in California. 

For more details, click here to access the Fact Sheet, provided courtesy of CWA.
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AWI Seeks Information about Experiences with Formaldehyde Off-Gassing

AWI is seeking information relating to formaldehyde off-gassing and asks that you take time to answer a very brief survey.

Please relate your experience with verifying the level of formaldehyde off-gassing in "parts per million" once a cabinet is completed in melamine board. 

What have you done to confirm/verify the formaldehyde levels?

Click here to for a quick survey and to register your response. 
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Consumer Confidence Up in May, Down in June

According to The Conference Board, “consumers remain rather subdued about short-term economic prospects.”  “All in all the glass is half empty and half full,” said Lynn Franco, Director of The Conference Board Research Center. 

To look at the group’s Consumer Confidence Index, click here.  You’ll see the ups and downs from October 2006 through June 2007.

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WoodLINKS’ Wilf Torunski Hands Over Reigns to Mark Smith


Wilf Torunski, WoodLINKS USA National Program Director, introduced his successor Mark Smith in the May/June 2007 issue of Inside WoodLINKS USA News.  Mr. Torunski, who is undergoing spinal rehabilitation, will continue to assist the organization’s Board of Directors with the next major growth hurdles they plan for WoodLINKS.  For more information, visit the WoodLINKS Web site.
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FSC Hosts Regional Meetings on Standards Revision & Other Emerging Issues

The Forest Stewardship Council is hosting regional meetings throughout the U.S. to engage members, certificate holders and others in discussions about revision of FSC standards and other emerging issues.  Feedback is invited at the upcoming sessions.  

For details about the upcoming meetings this month on July 12, 24 and 27, click here.  You’ll also find registration information.
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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 Central Pennsylvania Chapter
When:
July 12, 2007
What: Golf Outing (8:30 am – Registration: 10:00 am - Shotgun Start; 3:00 - Dinner)
Where: Cross Gates Golf Club, Millersville, PA
Contact: Dave Sanders, (P) 717.637.8977
More Information: (Registration Form)

AWI Ohio Valley Chapter
When: July 13, 2007 (8:30 am)
What: Golf Outing – Four Person / Best Ball Scramble
Where: Legendary Run Golf Course, Cincinnati, OH
Registration: tracy@louisvillelumber.com

AWI New England Chapter
When: July 23, 2007
What: 15th Annual Summer Outing – Golf, Fishing, and Dinner
Where:
Golf Tournament (1:30 pm) – Wentworth By the Sea Country Club, Rye, NY
Fishing Event (8:30 am) – Captain’s Fishing Parties, Plum Island Point, Newburyport, MA
More Information: Golf – Bruce Chapin, (P) 508.380.2205, Nchapin@atlanticplywood.com; Fishing – Kevin Barlow, (P) 800.733.1999, kevin@keiver-willard.com

AWI Wisconsin Chapter
When: August 2, 2007
What: Golf Outing & Dinner
Where: Kettle Moraine Golf Club, Dousman, WI
More Information: Click here
Proceeds: A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the newly founded Scholarship Fund.

AWI Ohio Valley Chapter
When:
August 23-24, 2007
What: Train the Trainer Workshop – Deliver Presentations with Knowledge & Style
Presenters: AWI National Director of Training & Member Services Greg Heuer; Linda Heuer
Where: Adams Mark Hotel, Indianapolis, IN
More Information: Click here

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Member News

Granite Mill and Fixture Offers Successful First Student Woodwork Competition

AWI Manufacturing Member Granite Mill and Fixture kicked off its celebration of 100 years of excellence in May with a “Leatherman Wave” award in the name of AWI, which donated $500 to support expansion of education to foster careers in architectural woodwork.  This year marks the 100 anniversary of Granite Mill’s operation in the Salt Lake Valley of UT. 

The event served as an “opportunity to help to develop the abilities of those seeking careers in the wood and wood products industry...,” said W. Gary Sandberg, company president.

The event was named in honor of the company’s founder, Mr. Sandberg’s grandfather.   James Soleberg of Riverton Highway School received the award.  “We hope that through this annual competition we can collectively provide motivation, support and encouragement to these students, instructors and school woodshop programs,” Mr. Sandberg added.

AWI members who are interested in AWI’s career development programs and related support efforts should contact AWI Education Project Manager Ilaria Fekeza at ifekeza@awinet.org.

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Regulatory Issues

IRS Advises Employers, Payers, Agents to Use New Appointment Form 2678

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recommends that employers, payers and their agents begin using a new, improved version of the agent appointment form immediately, to avoid delays in having the IRS approve the agent appointments.

All versions prior to the May 2007 form are now obsolete.

Form 2678, Employer/Payer Appointment of Agent, authorizes an agent to file tax returns and deposit and pay employment or other withholding taxes on an employer or payer’s behalf. However, the employer retains responsibility for filing Form 940, Employer’s Annual Federal Unemployment [FUTA] Tax Return, and depositing and paying FUTA tax.

The new Form 2678 contains several enhancements that clarify the appointment form and simplify the authorization process. The new Form 2678 may be downloaded from the IRS Web site at IRS.gov or ordered by calling toll-free 1-800-TAX-FORM (1.800.829.3676).
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Legislative News

Contingent Payment Clauses to Be Unenforceable in Texas Starting September 1

On June 16 Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) signed into law a landmark contingent payment bill (S.B. 324) that five chapters of the American Subcontractors Association (ASA) worked on for several years.

“The new law will make contingent payment clauses in construction contracts unenforceable unless nonpayment is the result of a breach of contractual obligations by the party seeking payment. It also will specifically limit sureties' enforcement of contingent payment clauses,” ASA reported.

Design services, civil engineering construction and small residential construction projects are exempt from the law, which takes effect September 1, 2007. For more information, contact ASAT Executive Director Raymond Risk at 512.472.9111

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New Connecticut Law Helps Winning Lien Bond Claimants

Amending the state's mechanic's lien statute, a new law in Connecticut will require courts to award costs and attorney fees when a plaintiff prevails in any action upon a bond that has been substituted for a mechanic's lien, the American Subcontractors Association reported. The measure, which was signed into law on June 11 by Gov. M. Jodi Rell (R), takes effect October 1, 2007.
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Next Issue of E-briefs

The next issue of AWI e-briefs will be published July 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.

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

Copyright Architectural Woodwork Institute www.awinet.org


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AWI at AWFS® Fair
July 19-21, 2007
Las Vegas, NV

July 20
Seminar (FR-69) Presented
by AWI Members
“Scheduling the Custom
Woodworking Shop”
(1:00 – 4:00 pm)
Click here to register
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Code Number – AWI599 

Fall AWI Lifelong Learning
 
Seminars
Sept. 14-15, 2007
Seattle, WA 
See June NewsBriefs
for more details.


AWI Annual Convention/
Executive Conference
Oct. 3-6, 2007
Louisville, KY

___________________

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Design Pro Presentations
Build Business Partnerships
with Lunch-n-Learn Programs,
Chapter Presentations

Design Pro is your link to
architects and design
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For details, contact
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