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This site is for roofing contractors as well as architects, engineers, consultants, manufacturers, distributors, owners, developers, and general contractors. NERCA represents the premier roofing professionals in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

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Latest News

Social Security Announces No Benefit Increase for 2016

The U.S. Social Security Administration announced that monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for nearly 65 million Americans will not automatically increase in 2016. There can be no cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) in 2016 under the Social Security Act because there was no increase in inflation from the third quarter of 2014 to the third quarter of 2015.

Other adjustments that would normally take effect based on changes in the national average wage index also will not take effect in January 2016. Since there is no COLA, the statute also prohibits a change in the maximum amount of earnings subject to the Social Security tax ($118,500 remains unchanged in 2016), as well as the retirement earnings test exempt amounts (remaining unchanged in 2016 at $15,720 per year under full retirement age and $41,880 per year in the year an individual reaches full retirement age).

The Department of Health and Human Services has not yet announced Medicare premium changes for 2016. Should there be an increase in the Medicare Part B premium; the law contains a “hold harmless” provision that protects approximately 70 percent of Social Security beneficiaries from paying a higher Part B premium, in order to avoid reducing their net Social Security benefit. Those not protected include higher income beneficiaries subject to an income-adjusted Part B premium and beneficiaries newly entitled to Part B in 2016. For additional information check the 2016 Social Security Changes Fact Sheet

Veterans’ Day


Veterans’ Day will be observed on
Wednesday, November 11, 2015


Senator Blumenthal Legislation Would Criminalize Safety Violations

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) reintroduced a bill on October 6, 2015 that would hold corporate officers criminally liable, including the possibility of jail sentences, for knowingly concealing hazards that lead to worker or consumer deaths or injuries. Under the “Hide No Harm Act” of 2015, a corporate officer must verbally notify the appropriate federal agency of a serious workplace danger within 24 hours of learning about it and must also warn affected employees in writing as soon as practicable. Corporate officers must also notify federal agencies in writing within 15 days and members of the public who might be exposed to the danger as soon as practicable. Failure to do so could lead to five years in prison and a fine, which the bill precludes an individual's employer from paying.

Drone Operator Faces $1.9 Million Fine for Unauthorized Drone Flights

The Federal Aviation Administration has proposed a $1.9-million fine against a Chicago-based drone operator for “endangering the safety of our airspace.” The FAA says it’s the largest civil action yet against an unmanned-aerial-system operator. The agency claims that, between March 21, 2012, and Dec. 15, 2014, SkyPan International Inc. flew 65 unauthorized commercial UAS flights for aerial photography over New York City and Chicago, including 43 that were conducted without required air-traffic-control clearance in highly restricted Class B airspace in New York. The Federal Aviation Administration receives about 100 reports per month from pilots reporting drone sightings.

NEREF Silent Auction

We would like to invite you to join us, and
help us with our Silent Auction.

It will be held on March 30 & 31, 2016
North/East Roofing Contractor Association 90th Annual
Convention and Trade Show
Fox Tower at Foxwoods Resort Casino,
Mashantucket, Connecticut.

Making a donation is a terrific way to show your support!
The success of the auction greatly depends on the
participation and generosity of our valued members and
industry friends.
To contribute to the auction please contact the association


Family Businesses - An Economic Engine

A family roofing contractor business is quite common in our industry but you may not know it, family businesses are economic powerhouses. They create jobs, pay taxes and help build vibrant communities across the country.

• Family-owned businesses are the backbone of the American economy. Studies have shown about 35 percent of Fortune 500 companies are family-controlled and represent the full spectrum of American companies from small business to major corporations. In addition, family businesses account for 64 percent of U.S. gross domestic product, generate 62 percent of the country’s employment, and account for 78 percent of all new job creation.

• The greatest part of America’s wealth lies with family-owned businesses. Family firms comprise 80 to 90 percent of all business enterprises in North America.

• Roughly 90 percent of the families responding to a survey in From Longevity of Firms to Trans-generational Entrepreneurship of Families: Introducing Family Entrepreneurial Orientation indicated that they control more than a single firm. The results of the survey suggest that there is strong entrepreneurial activity undertaken by controlling families beyond their core (i.e., largest) company.

• Small businesses, including many family firms, employ just over half of US workers. Of 119.9 million non-farm private sector workers in 2006, small firms with fewer than 500 workers employed 60.2 million and large firms employed 59.7 million. Firms with fewer than 20 employees employed 21.6 million.

• Research shows that family businesses are less likely to lay off employees regardless of financial performance.


North/East Roofing Contractor Association
90th Annual Convention and Trade Show

March 30 - 31, 2016
Fox Tower
Foxwoods Resort Casino
Mashantucket, Connecticut

For information on exhibiting please contact
Patsy Sweeney –

OSHA Inspectors Release New Compliance Manual

Earlier this month the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued an updated Field Operations Manual to guide inspectors through the inspection and abatement process. The 280-page guide includes more than 30 revisions to OSHA policies and guidance and information about rule changes enacted since the last edition of the manual was released in April 2011. An OSHA spokeswoman stated the “change did not launch new policy but does clarify existing policy.” The updates include new reporting requirements for amputations and hospitalizations, the procedure for communicating with the families of victims, the agency's revised penalty procedures and a new chapter covering when other federal agencies may preempt OSHA jurisdiction. While the manual is intended for staff at the Department of Labor's OSHA, it provides employers, safety officers and others with information on how inspections are conducted and the follow-up steps such as post-inspection conferences between OSHA and employers and the appeals process.

The manual also includes “Incentive, Penalty Changes”! The revised manual instructs inspectors that if they believe an employer's safety incentive policies are “unsound,” the compliance officer or area director may request assistance from their regional office to help determine if the policy is counter to a March 2013 guidance memo covering safety incentive policies and practices. The memo warned that incentives can't discriminate against workers who report injuries. The now-expired manual didn't mention reviews of safety incentive programs.

Another change is a revised chart for calculating proposed “gravity-based penalties” for alleged serious violations. The “gravity” of a violation is a calculation of the likely severity of an injury the hazard could lead to and the likelihood of an injury occurring. The new chart increases penalties in all categories. For instance, on the 2011 chart, the maximum penalty for a “moderate gravity” serious violation penalty was $3,500. The new chart incorporates updated policies that allow fines as high as $6,000 for the same violation.

State Immigration Laws Up Again So Far in 2015

The number of immigration-related laws passed by state legislatures in the first half of 2015 increased following a drop in the number of such laws last year, according to a recent report from the National Conference of State Legislatures. Between January and June, the states enacted a total of 153 laws and 238 resolutions, compared with 132 laws and 84 resolutions enacted during the first half of 2014, the report said. Four states—Alaska, Massachusetts, North Carolina and Ohio—haven't enacted any immigration laws so far this year. The report attributed the increase in state immigration laws in part to every state being in regular legislative session in 2015. Among the state-level immigration laws highlighted in the report are laws pertaining to the E-Verify electronic employment eligibility verification systems.

Joint Employer Bill Gets Senate Panel Hearing

Earlier this month the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) called the National Labor Relations Board's recent Browning-Ferris decision “the biggest attack” on small business opportunity “that we've seen in a long, long time,” as he opened an Oct. 6, 2015 committee hearing on a bill he has offered that would “roll back” the ruling. The NLRB held 3-2 that companies may be joint employers if they share or co-determine matters governing essential terms and conditions of employment. The board said direct, indirect and potential control over working conditions are relevant in identifying which companies are joint employers.

NERCA’S 21st Annual Ski Weekend

Bretton Woods – Mount Washington Resort
JANUARY 8-10, 2016

Please join NERCA as we venture to the snow covered peaks for a weekend of skiing and fun.

Open to all NERCA members, their employees, guests,
friends, and families.

Your Choice of 2 Nights Lodging
Tax and Amenity Fee
2 Day Lift Ticket’s (optional)

For more information please contact the NERCA Office, 781/849-0555.


Family Business has Longevity

• Recent research has shown that continued family control can be efficient, since families are, for example, able to positively affect the resource inventory and usage of their firms, apply a long-term perspective allowing for unique strategic positioning, have less human resources problems and higher firm values, or drive new entrepreneurial activity.

• What truly drives many family businesses is the sense of connection and identity the owners and their family members feel with the business.

• What truly drives many family businesses is the sense of connection and identity the owners and their family members feel with the business.

• The mean age of family control in the family’s core company is 60.2 years.

• More than 30% of all family-owned businesses survive into the second generation. Twelve percent will still be viable into the third generation, with 3% of all family businesses operating at the fourth-generation level and beyond.

• The tenure of leadership in a Family Enterprise is four to five times longer than their counterparts.

• Of primary importance among family firm wealth holders is transferring not only their financial wealth but also their values surrounding their wealth to subsequent generations. Primary values taught include encouraging children to earn their own money, philanthropy, charitable giving and volunteering.

• The environment for innovation in family businesses improves when more generations of the owning family are actively involved in the business.

• Family businesses retain talent better than their competitors do: only 9 percent of family businesses workforces turned over annually (versus 11 percent at nonfamily firms), in a Harvard Business Review study. They create a culture of commitment and purpose, avoiding layoffs during downturns, promoting from within and investing in people.

Please Keep Our Troops in Your Thoughts and Prayers



The possibility of Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) remedy dooms a worker's state claim. The Connecticut common law claim by a former payroll coordinator that she was wrongfully discharged for complaining to her supervisor about payroll violations must be dismissed because she has an alternative remedy of pleading a Fair Labor Standards Act retaliation claim, the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut ruled Sept. 14, 2015. The former employee alleged that she told her supervisor that the company might have been acting unlawfully by not consistently paying its construction laborers overtime for hours they worked in excess of 40 per week. Within two weeks of her doing so, her supervisor and another Walsh official fired her, she said.


Interesting Ballet question could face Maine voters in November. “Ranked Choice Voting” if approved in next month, Maine would become the first state to ensure election winners carry a majority. It could become the first state to swap its traditional election system for one in which the winning candidates for Congress and state offices are selected by ranked-choice voting. The “Committee for Ranked Choice Voting”, a state organization backed by national advocates, will submit signed petitions to the Secretary of State’s Office seeking to put the proposal on the November 2016 ballot. Ranked-choice voting is designed to ensure that the winning candidate receives a majority vote.


An alarming piece of legislation H.1748/ S.966 “To prevent wage theft and promote employer accountability” was recently filed that on the surface appears easy to support but it contains vicarious liability, stop work orders and mandatory treble damages plus the AG’s fees and costs. NERCA is working with other associations to clarify the potential effects on roofing contractors. Another bill we’re tracking is H-1696 “An Act relative to the compliance with the Prevailing Wage Laws”. This would require off site fabrication to be covered under the Prevailing Wage laws.


The Presidential candidates have been flooding the streets of New Hampshire the last month in anticipation for November elections. In Concord this month a legislative committee told the Site Evaluation Committee SEC to revise key sections of its proposed rules for approving major energy projects. During the last few sessions, lawmakers made major changes to the SEC and its evaluation process for energy projects, seeking greater public input and more explicit standards.

The state announced that New Hampshire’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.4 percent in September.





Regional revenue for specialty contractors in the New York-New Jersey area declined in 2014, compared to the previous year, according to the results of Engineering News Rankings. Aggregate revenue for the top 45 specialty contractors on the 2014 list was $3.49 billion while those who ranked in 2013 reported $3.84 billion. The rankings are based on firms’ prior year revenue figures. Regional revenue for specialty contractors in New York and New Jersey peaked in 2012 at $3.95 billion, rising from $3.40 billion the previous year.


Governor Andrew M. Cuomo recently announced a number of new measures to support the mission of a new formed Task Force to Combat Worker Exploitation. First, the Task Force will be supported by $700,000 to coordinate outreach and education with workers and employers, as well as investigations, prosecutions and data collection and compliance efforts. Additionally, the Governor has created an Anti-Retaliation Unit and a Mediation Unit within the State Department of Labor to eliminate retaliation against workers who assert their rights, and to expedite the speedy disposition of cases generated by the Task Force’s investigations. The Governor has also launched a new website ( to provide workers, employers and the general public with information about the Task Force and how to come forward and help combat worker exploitation.


The state continues its Regulatory Reform efforts – It created an office to cut red tape, it now requires economic impact analyses of small business, created a team to enhance efficiency and customer-centeredness, Provide the resources and authority needed by the State Office of Regulatory Reform and expanded its electronic permitting system. All positive actions by the state for the roofing and construction industries.


The state of Vermont recently receives record funding for the State Energy Efficiency Efforts. Deb Markowitz, Secretary of Vermont's Agency of Natural Resources, has announced the result of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiatives' (RGGI) 29th auction. Vermont uses the proceeds from RGGI auctions to support Vermont's energy efficiency programs. Markowitz said, "I am pleased to report that the latest RGGI auction is the most successful to date, with $1,156,675 coming to Vermont from the sale of 192,139 allowances." RGGI states include Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont.