NRCA Member Kulp Elected to Wisconsin State Assembly

The National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) is pleased to announce that long-time member Bob Kulp of Stratford, Wis., has been elected to the state’s 69th Assembly District. He was sworn into office Dec. 5, 2013.

Kulp is the founder and co-owner of Kulp’s of Stratford LLC. He has been an active member of NRCA since 1992 and currently serves as a vice president on the association’s Executive Committee.

“I believe taking my business experience to the political process will be an asset,” Kulp says. “When businesses thrive, people thrive.”

Kulp defeated Democrat opponent Kenneth Slezak, receiving 67 percent of the vote, and will replace former Assembly Majority Leader Scott Suder, who resigned his position in September 2012. Kulp will serve out the remaining 13 months of Suder’s term.

Whitton Assumes PIMA Chairmanship

The Polyisocyanurate Insulation Manufacturers Association (PIMA) has announced that Jim Whitton, vice president of Sales and Marketing at Hunter Panels LLC, has assumed the chairmanship of the organization as of Jan. 1, 2014. He succeeds Dr. Chris Griffin of Johns Manville Roofing Systems, who has served as the PIMA chairman for the last two years.

“Given his extensive roofing industry expertise, his deep understanding of the polyiso insulation industry and his experience working with the Association on numerous task groups and initiatives, Jim is the perfect choice to lead PIMA,” says Jared Blum, PIMA president. “We look forward to his leadership as code and standard setting bodies continue to embrace and reiterate the value of building thermal performance.”

Whitton, a 28-year veteran of the roofing industry, has worked at Hunter Panels since its founding. He graduated from DePaul University with degrees in both accounting and education. Prior to joining Hunter Panels, Whitton served as the Regional Tapered Manager and Marketing Manager for NRG Barriers. He is also a current member of PIMA’s Board of Directors as well as the Roof Consultants Institute.

“This is an auspicious time to lead the polyiso industry,” Whitton says. “In the last few months ASHRAE has published increased R-value requirements in the 90.1 standard, the International Code Council has clarified insulation requirements for reroofing projects and PIMA has updated its the QualityMark program in accordance with ASTM C1298-13. All these initiative further reflect the polyiso industry’s long-term commitment to cost effective, sustainable and energy-efficient construction.”

SPRI Distributes ‘PV Ready’ Technical Bulletin

Waltham, Mass.-based SPRI’s Technical Committee and board of directors have approved and distributed to the organization’s members Technical Bulletin 1-13A, “Summary of SPRI Membrane Manufacturer Photovoltaic (PV) Ready Roof Systems and Services”. The bulletin contains general guidelines from SPRI related to “PV Ready” roof assemblies and services designed to provide maximum protection for the roof (and maintain its warranty coverage). SPRI represents sheet membrane and component suppliers to the commercial roofing industry.

“Commercial rooftops are a convenient platform for installing solar photovoltaic systems,” says SPRI Technical Director Mike Ennis. “However, it’s important to remember that the roof’s primary function is to protect the building’s contents and its people from the elements.”

Technical Bulletin 1-13 raises important considerations for the building owner, such as the added weight of a PV array and the impact of wind and fire approvals. The bulletin also lists potential PV system-specific requirements from manufacturers to maintain existing warranties; project documentation forms frequently required to install the PV system over an existing warranted roof; and general issues and additional services offered by manufacturers, such as single-source warranties for the roof system and solar integration.

SPRI gathered the information included in Technical Bulletin 1-13 from a survey of information available on websites and literature of SPRI member membrane manufacturers. As such, the bulletin serves as a summary of the PV-ready products, requirements and services currently offered by SPRI members and is available for distribution to customers.

“Each SPRI member may have its own PV ready program, and no SPRI member may necessarily be considered to have all program elements,” Ennis adds. “The building owner should always consult the manufacturer of the roof system specified for the new construction or reroofing project prior to the installation of a PV system on a warranted roof.”

In addition, Ennis writes about PV Ready rooftop considerations in “Tech Point”.

Fatal Work Injuries Decreased in 2012

Preliminary results from the Washington, D.C.-based Bureau of Labor Statistics‘ National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries show a reduction in the number of fatal work injuries in 2012 compared with 2011. Last year, 4,383 workers died from work-related injuries, down from a final count of 4,693 fatal work injuries in 2011. Based on preliminary counts, the rate of fatal workplace injuries in 2012 was 3.2 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers, down from a rate of 3.5 per 100,000 in 2011.

In response, Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez states: “I am greatly encouraged by the reduction in workplace fatalities, even in a growing economy. It is a testament to the hard work of employers, unions, health and safety professionals, and the Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration and Mine Safety and Health Administration. Through collaborative education and outreach efforts and effective law enforcement, these numbers indicate that we are absolutely moving in the right direction. But to me these aren’t just numbers and data; they are fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, who will never come home again.

“We can and must do better. Job gains in oil and gas and construction have come with more fatalities, and that is unacceptable. That’s why OSHA has undertaken a number of outreach and educational initiatives, including a campaign to prevent falls in construction … . Employers must take job hazards seriously and live up to their legal and moral obligation to send their workers home safe every single day. The Labor Department is committed to preventing these needless deaths, and we will continue to engage with employers to make sure that these fatality numbers go down further.”

Construction Unemployment Rate Falls

The unemployment rate for construction workers fell to the lowest July level in five years, even though employment has stagnated in the past four months, according to an analysis of new government data by the Associated General Contractors of America. Association officials urged Washington leaders to act on stalled infrastructure funding measures to help jump start construction hiring. The unemployment rate for workers who last worked in construction declined to 9.1 percent from 12.3 percent in July 2012, not seasonally adjusted, and the number of unemployed construction workers dropped by 227,000 to 767,000. Construction employment in July totaled 5,793,000, seasonally adjusted, up by 166,000, or 3 percent, from July 2012 but down by 6,000 from the revised June level. Although residential and nonresidential contractors have added workers in the past year, employment growth in July occurred only on the residential side.

Dodge Momentum Index Inches Up in July

The Dodge Momentum Index inched up 0.2 percent in July, according to McGraw-Hill Construction, a division of The McGraw-Hill Cos. The index now rests at 112.6. While July’s growth rate was modest, the index continues to hold onto the gains established earlier in the year and remains near its four-year high. This stability suggests developers perceive the environment for new construction to be generally improving but remain cautious about the tepid performance of the economy and its impact on market fundamentals.

Matching Funds for S.C. Solar Installations on Educational Facilities

Palmetto Clean Energy (PaCE) Inc., a South Carolina nonprofit, is disbursing grants for the lesser of 50 percent or $50,000 of the cost of new solar photovoltaic installations to schools, school districts and education-focused non-profits in South Carolina. In aggregate, the PaCE Solar Grant Pilot seeks to disburse up to $250,000 in funding to institutions by first quarter 2014.

Applicants must provide at least 50 percent of the project cost and demonstrate that matching funds are available, in-hand or otherwise committed before PaCE will release any funds to a qualifying applicant selected for the program. Matching funds may be in the form of in-kind goods or services, such as installation or project design. Grant funds may only be applied to the cost of installing new, grid-connected PV systems located on property owned by the applicant.

Applications are due Oct. 1.

Asphalt Roofing Industry Announces Winners of 2012 Accident Prevention Contest

The asphalt roofing industry is honoring 12 companies for their commitment to safety in the workplace. The Washington, D.C.-based Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association (ARMA) recognized the winners for their outstanding safety records in the manufacture of asphalt roofing materials.

“We are extremely proud of all this year’s winners,” says Reed Hitchcock, executive vice-president of ARMA. “Safety is a No. 1 concern for all our ARMA members. The work that ARMA’s Health, Safety & Environment Committee puts into this contest every year shows our continued focus on the safety of our members and how the industry is taking proactive steps to maintain and improve on our collective safety records.”

The contest’s winners are determined by the “ARMA Index,” which scores facilities based on their safety data for the year. To ensure all participants competed against plants of comparable size and capacity, entrants were grouped by the following criteria: Group A comprised facilities with more than 300,000 labor hours worked per year; Group B included facilities with 200,000 to 300,000 labor hours; Group C with 100,000 to 200,000 labor hours; and Group D with 100,000 or fewer labor hours worked per year. The facilities were classified based on the previous year’s total labor-hours worked.

Awards were presented in four categories: President’s Award, Award of Excellence, Perfect Employee Safety Certificate and Certificate of Improvement.

President’s Award: Presented to the plant in each labor-hour group that has had the lowest combined ARMA Index over the last two years.

  • Group A: GAF, Michigan City, Ind.
  • Group B: GAF, Baltimore
  • Group C: Atlas Roofing Corp., Hampton, Ga.
  • Group D: CertainTeed Corp., Wilmington, Calif.

Award of Excellence: Presented to those plants that have recorded three consecutive years of a “perfect” ARMA Index and are not President’s Award winners.

  • CertainTeed Corp., Little Rock, Ark.
  • GAF, Walpole, Mass.
  • Henry Co., Bartow, Fla.; Houston; Huntington Park, Calif.; and Ontario, Calif.
  • Owens Corning, Brookville, Ind., and Houston
  • Owens Corning (Asphalt), Atlanta; Jacksonville, Fla.; Memphis; Minneapolis; Portland, Ore.; and Summit, Ill.
  • Tarco, North Little Rock, Ark.

Perfect Employee Safety Certificate: Presented to those plants that had a “perfect” ARMA Index for 2012.

  • Atlas Roofing Corp., Franklin, Ohio
  • CertainTeed Corp., Milan, Ohio; Oxford, N.C.; Little Rock, Ark.; and Wilmington, Calif.
  • GAF, Fresno, Calif.; Walpole, Mass.; Tampa, Fla.; Fontana, Calif.; Chester, S.C.; Shafter, Calif.; and Stockton, Calif.
  • Henry Co., Indianapolis; Ontario, Calif.; Bartow, Fla.; Huntington Park, Calif.; Kingman, Ariz.; and Houston
  • Johns Manville, Macon, Ga., and South Gate, Calif.
  • Malarkey Roofing Products, Oklahoma City
  • Owens Corning, Jacksonville, Fla.; Houston; Kearny, N.J.; Savannah, Ga.; and Brookville, Ind.
  • Owens Corning (Asphalt), Kearny, N.J.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Irving, Texas; Houston; Denver; Atlanta; Medina, Ohio; Memphis; Minneapolis; Oklahoma City; Portland, Ore.; and Summit, Ill.
  • TAMKO Building Products, Columbus, Kan.
  • Tarco, North Little Rock, Ark.

Certificate of Improvement: Presented to those plants that demonstrate an improvement in their ARMA Index of at least 25 percent compared with their previous year’s performance.

  • Atlas Roofing Corp., Ardmore, Okla.; Franklin, Ohio; and Daingerfield, Texas
  • Building Products of Canada, Joliette, Quebec, Canada; Edmonton, Alberta, Canada; and LaSalle, Quebec
  • CertainTeed Corp., Oxford, N.C.; Milan, Ohio; and Norwood, Mass.
  • GAF, Tuscaloosa, Ala.; Myerstown, Pa.; Tampa, Fla.; Stockton, Calif.; Chester, S.C.; and Fontana, Calif.
  • Henry Co., Indianapolis
  • IKO Production Inc., Wilmington, Del.
  • Johns Manville, South Gate, Calif.
  • Owens Corning, Denver; Minneapolis; Summit, Ill.; Memphis; and Kearny, N.J.
  • Owens Corning (Asphalt), Oklahoma City; Medina, Ohio; Kearny, N.J.; Denver; and Houston
  • Polyglass USA Inc., Hazleton, Pa., and Winter Haven, Fla.
  • TAMKO Building Products, Joplin, Mo., and Columbus, Kan.

For each of the awards, participants must file quarterly reports, which measure key components of a comprehensive plant safety program, including lost or restricted time after an injury, OSHA reportable incidents and the labor hours worked at the location.

PIMA QualityMark Will Begin Reporting ASTM C1289-11 LTTR Values

The ASTM C1289 Standard Specification for Faced Rigid Cellular Polyisocyanurate Thermal Insulation Board (ASTM C1289-11) has been updated and features important improvements regarding the prediction of long-term thermal resistance value for a variety of polyiso insulation boards. The PIMA QualityMark program, the only third-party program for the certification of the thermal value of polyiso insulation, will begin reporting Long Term Thermal Resistance (LTTR) values in accordance with ASTM C1289-11 on Jan. 1, 2014.

The PIMA QualityMark certification program is a voluntary program that allows polyiso manufacturers to obtain independent, third-party certification for the LTTR values of their polyiso insulation products. Polyiso is the only insulation to be certified by this program for its LTTR value. The program was developed by Washington, D.C.-based PIMA and is administered by FM Global, Johnston, R.I.

To participate in PIMA’s QualityMark certification program, a Class 1 roof is suggested to have a design R-value of 5.7 per inch. PIMA member manufacturers will publish updated R-values for their polyiso products later this year. Polyiso is unique in that the R-value increases with the thickness of the foam, so 3 inches of polyiso has a higher R-value per inch than 2 inches.

“Since its founding, PIMA has been very active in the harmonization of relevant standards, including ASTM and CAN/ ULC, in an effort to provide greater continuity in the reporting of polyiso roof insulation thermal values throughout North America. That is why the association implemented the industry-wide Quality-Mark certified R-value program for rigid polyiso roof insulation in 2004,” says Jared Blum, president, PIMA. “The update to this standard provides more data to aid in the prediction of long-term thermal performance of polyiso insulation.”

To provide a comprehensive approach to predicting long-term R-value throughout North America, the updated ASTM C1289-11 standard now incorporates two test methods, ASTM C1303-11 and CAN/ULC-S770-09, which offer a similar approach to predicting the long-term thermal performance for foam insulation materials that exhibit air and blowing agent diffusion or aging over time. Both test methods employ a technique called “slicing and scaling” to accelerate this aging process and provide an accurate and consistent prediction of product R-value after five years, which is equivalent to a time-weighted thermal design R-value for 15 years. The update to ASTM C1289-11 in no way impacts polyiso’s physical properties.

Be Recognized for Excellence in Roofing Design

The Center for Environmental Innovation in Roofing, Washington, D.C., is accepting entries for its 2013 RoofPoint Excellence in Design Award. The Excellence in Design Award was established in 2003 by the National Roofing Contractors Association, Rosemont, Ill., to recognize professionals who design long-lasting, energy-efficient, environmentally friendly roof systems. In 2008, the center began awarding the Excellence in Design Award.

With the launch of RoofPoint, the center now recognizes design excellence through the RoofPoint program. A description of last year’s award-winning projects is available here.

This year’s deadline for entries is Oct. 31. Roofing contractors, architects, specifiers, manufacturing reps and roof consultants are encouraged to submit a project. Roof systems must have been installed after Jan. 1, 2012, and only RoofPoint Registered Projects are eligible to receive the award.

A panel of roofing industry experts selected by the center will judge applicants. Award winners will be notified by Nov. 30.

Download the award application at roofpoint.org/excellence-design-award-application. For more information about the award, contact Justin Koscher at (202) 380-3371. To find out how you can participate in the RoofPoint program, email Dr. Jim Hoff, the center’s vice president of research.