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Get Out and Vote

It is getting near that day in November when this country goes to the polls to elect a president. I challenge every member of the Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industry to vote, and I also ask that each member convince five to 10 other people to vote. As a nation, we haven’t seen great voter turnouts in recent elections. I think that is sad. Our freedom to choose who runs the country is really a privilege that we shouldn’t take for granted.

If we want a voice about changes for a better future, we need to vote. I do believe most of us want to see the continued creation of good jobs, better schools, affordable health care insurance, homeland security, the opportunity to own a home, elimination of frivolous lawsuits and to live in peace.

So, if you operate a business, encourage your employees to vote. Explain the platforms of both candidates. Your employees should base their decision on who they think has the best plan, proven experience, strong leadership qualities and the integrity to not falter under the pressures of the presidency. While I don’t think our economy is going into a tailspin, I believe the wrong decisions can steer us into economic trouble, which could have a major impact on our industry.

On another front, I want to remind members about the new federal legislation concerning overtime—sometimes referred to as the white collar overtime law. Don’t ignore this legislation because your company could be on the hook for hefty back wages if the government comes knocking on your door to check your books.

Speaking of wages, I see continued skilled worker shortages putting pressure on employers to hike wages. If we can maintain increases of 4 percent, most regions should do OK. For a review of wage, salary and benefit information, visit It’s a great source and offers a free issue of Contractors Compensation Quarterly.

On another front, I’d like to remind the membership that the AWCI is continuing to move forward on the steel framing educational program. It is an important endeavor as are many training and education initiatives in our industry.

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