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ECAO Annual General Meeting Niagara Falls October 24

This fall ECAO and our IBEW Industry Partners at IBEW/CCO will be hosting our first joint annual general meetings of ECAO and the Joint Electrical Promotion Plan (JEPP) on October 23 and 24th in Niagara Falls.

We will have Ontario Minister of Labour, Monte McNaughton speak on October 23, followed by two educational sessions featuring trends in social media and generational workforce management.

On October 24, following the ECAO Annual General Meeting, our keynote address will be from Melanie Sodka, owner of Capacity Creator, addressing how to create capacity for soft skills.

We have a teaser video for you to see from Melanie, just click here.

ECAO will be recognizing our Hugh Carroll Safety Award winners and the winner of the prestigious DJB Wright award at our AGM and at the previous evenings Great Gatsby reception.

Last year’s DJB Wright award winner Bill McKee


While we understand that it is difficult to take time away from work, but we believe that attending this event will be educational, productive and fun.

The event is complimentary and the only cost is your travel and hotel. Hotel rooms are reasonable, so book your room today by clicking here.

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ECAO Prague Conference 2020

While our members are getting excited about the upcoming ECAO Conference in Nashville, we want to remind everyone that next year’s 2019 conference is around the corner on May 24-30, 2020. 

Mark your calendar and you will be hearing more from us over the fall months. If you have any questions, please contact Cathy Frederickson.


ECAO Webinar - Michael Zacks, Office of the Employer September 10, 2019 

Michael Zacks is returning on September 10 to provide a one hour webinar on what employers can expect once the new WSIB Rate Framework comes into effect in 2020. The August ECAO webinar given by WSIB will address some of the specifics and mechanics that will be coming in the next year, but Michael can address those concerns that ECAO Contractor members may have regarding the rates and how they are established.

If you are interested, please email Cathy Frederickson.

 Industry News

Industry Perspectives Op-ed: Toronto’s Bill 66 decision a ‘clearheaded and courageous’ one


On June 19 Toronto city council made the clearheaded and courageous decision to opt out of Bill 66. By doing so, council decided to maintain the status quo and to uphold its freely negotiated collective agreements with construction unions.

The unionized construction workforce of Toronto is one of the best trained in the entire country. This did not happen by accident. Toronto’s construction workers, through their unions, fund the training for their industry. The hourly contributions which Toronto’s unionized workforce makes to construction training centres across the GTA add up to millions and millions of dollars every single year. As council recognized, without the unions and the training which they provide, it would be virtually impossible for Toronto to produce the next generation of skilled construction workers that this city so desperately needs.


The Dotted Line: 7 invoice mistakes that waste money and time

Submitting an invoice for completed work and then getting paid is about as straightforward as the construction business gets. Or at least it should be. Getting paid on time is the lifeblood for contractors, but many consistently make the same mistakes over and over when handling this vital process.

Find out what are the biggest mistakes many contractors make when it comes to invoice management.


Five common mistakes in construction contracts

The construction contract is the main tool that defines a relationship between an owner and its general contractor or construction manager. Any construction contract requires careful thought, negotiation and drafting, because in addition to defining the relationship between the parties, it provides certainty to the project, allocates risk and provides mechanisms to mitigate risks. From a relatively simple home renovation to a large infrastructure project, parties usually enter into some form of written construction contract, yet, we all too often see the following common mistakes in these contracts.

Find out what the five common mistakes are - read more.


Federal Government to provide funding to Northern Transformer

ecao-july31-4.jpgNorthern Transformer, which designs and manufactures industrial power transformers in Vaughan, Ont., has received a repayable contribution of $3 million from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) to help implement ‘clean’ technologies and reduce its environmental footprint.

Northern Transformer is also a sponsor of the ECAO Conference in Nashville.


Flagship McDonalds Time Square with Procore

ecao-july31-5.jpgLocated at the corner of 45th and Broadway in Manhattan, the newly opened McDonald’s restaurant in Times Square is on one of the busiest eateries in the world, built in one of the busiest locations on earth. 

Procore was at the center of document control and daily reporting. Project schedules and timeline models were done with Microsoft Project. That involved an ongoing assessment against baseline schedules so the entire team could stay aware of schedule impacts along the evolution of the design and overall scope.

To watch a video on the construction, click here.


The future of AI in Construction

Implementing AI means significant investment for construction companies, but the rewards can far outweigh the initial outlay.

Construction designs have traditionally been created using pen and paper, painstakingly focusing on every detail and angle.

The emergence of 3D planning revolutionized construction design and now, building information modelling (BIM) has again transformed the process further.


AI Technology can detect bridge defects

Two companies aim to bring the bridge inspection process into the 21st century with a new system that employs drones, artificial intelligence and algorithms to quickly spot defects and problems. The creators of the patent-pending methodology estimate it can help transportation projects slash up to 70% in man hours compared to traditional methods, in less than half the time.


UL makes standards free of charge on line

ECAO-JULY31-7.jpgJune 28, 2019 – Earlier this year, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) opened its full library of more than 1,400 product safety standards for interested individuals and organizations around the world to digitally find, reference and use at no cost.

“Digital technologies and globalization have driven—and continue to drive—huge changes in standards and the way they are used,” says Philip Piqueira, UL’s vice-president (VP) of global standards. “By taking this important step, we will keep standards both relevant and vibrant, engaging new generations, more global audiences and educators.”

UL is calling on all standards organizations to join the movement and make their catalogues accessible to all. To access the UL library, click here.


Call for Action: Help Protect IBEW Apprenticeships- Ratios

Department of Labour DOL Rule Could Threaten Quality, Safety and Pay in Construction Industry

In the US the construction industry is excluded from the Department of Labor’s proposed Apprenticeship Rule. Public comments being submitted now will help determine whether the exemption stays or goes once a final rule is issued.

While unions and allied contractors are pushing to keep the exemption, nonunion builders are eager to eliminate it, opening up the industry to apprenticeships with lower standards and greater risks.

Without a construction industry exemption, nonunion contractors could pay apprentices as little as minimum wage and wouldn’t be bound by wage progression rules on Davis-Bacon projects. The result would be stagnant wages on federal worksites or, worse, Stephenson said. Excluding journeyman-apprentice ratio requirements, jeopardizing safety by opening federal projects up to an influx of low-wage apprentices.


 Industry Events

Rocking Awareness: Battle of the Bands

ECAO contractor member, Modern Niagara is holding the “Battle of the Bands” to raise money for the Royal Ottawa Foundation for Mental Health.

Four local construction company house bands compete for bragging rights while supporting an amazing cause. Who'll take the title: EllisDon, Smith and Andersen, Goodkey Weedmark, or Modern Niagara as they rock to raise awareness for mental health?

ECAO members in the Ottawa and surrounding areas should come out and support one of their own for a good cause.

To read more or buy tickets, click here.


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