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ECAO Annual Conference Nashville September 25th - 28th, 2019


By the time you read this newsletter, everyone who booked our Nashville Conference should be landing and booking into their rooms in Music City.

In case you missed this year’s conference, Don’t Worry, you can keep yourself virtually involved with all the updates on our Social Media Channels. Stay connected with ECAO by following us on:

Twitter: @ECAOntario

Facebook: ECAOntario

LinkedIn: company/ecaontario

YouTube: ECAO

We have also introduced a Twitter Wall this year, you can get featured on the wall displayed throughout the conference. All you have to do is to follow us on our social media platforms and use the official hashtag #ECAONashville.

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ECAO and JEPP Annual General Meeting October 23 - 24

To register please go to

Please note the hotel room blocks will end this Friday so if you are planning on attending, please book your room soon. Since this is our first joint AGM with JEPP (Joint Electrical Promotion Plan), it would be a great opportunity to learn more about the things JEPP supports in order to promote the unionized electrical contracting industry in Ontario.

2019 National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) Conference Las Vegas

ECAO staff, members and IBEW labour partners attended the NECA Conference on September 14-17, 2019 in Las Vegas. The NECA conference emcee and the keynote speaker was Davie Meade, who will ECAO’s keynote at our Prague Conference.

Jodi Travers and Graeme Aitken were able to get a personalized video with David, take a look.


Making It Easier and Faster to Work in the Skilled Trades

Government Appoints Training and Skills Advisors to Consult with Industry and Stakeholders

Today, Ross Romano, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities announced that Adam Melnick and Andrew Pariser have been appointed as the new Training and Skills Advisors (TSAs) for a period of two years. They will lead consultations with industry and stakeholders and provide recommendations to the Minister to modernize the skilled trades and apprenticeship system.

"In order to get people the right jobs, we need to make it easy for them to get the right training - training that matches what employers are looking for," said Romano. "That's why I am so pleased that we are taking this next step in our modernization of the skilled trades and apprenticeship system. Adam and Andrew will hear directly from people involved in the sector - employers, apprentices, skilled tradespeople, and training providers. With their help, we can make meaningful changes to our current system and make it easier and faster to get people trained, certified, and begin working in the trades.


More Than $600 Million Back Into Ontario Economy After WSIB Eliminates Unfunded Liability Charge

Move good for employers and workers; will spur growth and investment in Ontario

TORONTO - Ontario's Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) is ending its unfunded liability charge, leading to a $607 million reduction in costs to business, Minister of Labour Monte McNaughton announced today.

"This is good news for employers and employees across the province," said McNaughton. "This money will lead to investments in new jobs, technology and health and safety programs."

"This is another part of our government's plan for providing more economic opportunity for the people of Ontario," said McNaughton. "By eliminating the unfunded liability, the WSIB has ensured over 222,000 businesses across the province will see premiums reduced."

The WSIB will officially eliminate its unfunded liability charge beginning in January 2020.


 Industry News

‘They really hate us’: New prompt payment rules may help mend the relationship between GCs, subtrades

Over the past 20 years, payment timelines from General Contractors to their sub-trades have lengthened from an average of around 50 days to more than 70. Subcontractors, at times, have been made to wait four months or more before getting their due.

The resulting tension between the two has been palpable and new legislation coming into force Oct. 1 in Ontario is designed to fix the long lag time between work being finished and contractors, subcontractors and material suppliers collecting their money. By laying out no-nonsense, non-negotiable timelines for payment and establishing a new dispute resolution process through adjudication, the changes are also likely to help mend relations between generals and their subs.


$65B IO pipeline a big job creator: Scott

Ontario Minister of Infrastructure Laurie Scott has unveiled a $65-billion P3 project pipeline that she says will be a significant driver of economic prosperity and job creation for the province, particularly for the construction sector.

The projects, Scott said, represent a “key part of Ontario’s future prosperity” and will “generate thousands of jobs in the skilled trades, engineering and design sectors.


Network Cabling Specialist- Trade of the Future


The Network Cabling Specialist (NCS) trade is ever-growing and expanding. We had eight Network Cabling Specialist apprentices exhibiting their skills at the Skills Ontario Competition 2019 in May. This year’s NCS demonstration at Skills Ontario was sponsored by the ECAO/IBEW. 

The Network Cabling Specialists will ensure that this infrastructure is installed and maintained to the highest standard. Their apprenticeship will ensure that the work is done to all applicable standards and codes to ensure operability, and to ensure the integrity of the network is not compromised.  


National building unions launch election website

OTTAWA — A coalition of seven federal construction trade unions has launched an election advocacy website called Let’s Build Canada (LBC) that it says is targeting election issues of importance to their workers.

Members of the coalition are the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Canada, the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, the Ironworker Management Progressive Action Cooperative Trust, the Labourers’ International Union of North America, UA Canada/Canadian Piping Trades and the International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers.


Smart Cities: An Emerging Business Opportunity for Electrical Contractors 


Electrical contractors may be in a better position than they realize to develop a profitable presence in the emerging Smart City market. Panellists at the NECA Show session, “What is a Smart City and Why Should You Care?” agreed many electrical contractors already do 80% of the electrical and VDV work necessary for most Smart City applications. The Smart City concept includes street lighting, electric vehicle charging stations, traffic management systems, various municipal services (including water, safety, cybersecurity and mass transit), new 5G control systems, inter-building electrical control systems ,and other applications that require the installation of various sensors to send data to cloud-based data management systems that city, facility, and building managers are developing to manage municipal operations.


Getting Ready for Energy Storage

New business opportunities exist in energy storage for electrical contractors, but industry experts caution it’s best for them to start with the smaller residential jobs.

Energy storage solutions cover quite a range of applications, from the relatively simple residential solutions like Tesla’s PowerWall to UPS or battery storage for hospitals and other institutional or commercial applications to storage for utility-scale renewable generating facilities like wind farms or utilities’ solar fields.


Upcoming Events

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