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Change is Coming

J. Edward Sauter, CFA Executive Director

The Board of Directors had a busy schedule during their meeting, Saturday, April 17th, especially with the discussion that ensued the prior day regarding membership and growth. Below are the highlights of action and discussion:


Dues for the association have not changed in several years while benefits and expenses continue to increase. There are also several levels of contractor membership, which is quite confusing. The new simplified structure includes two levels of contractor membership. Contractors with gross revenues over $1 million will pay $600 and those with gross revenues under $1 million will pay $400. Management and the board are still discussing the rates for introductory memberships and professional firms. Members of the Associates Council will determine their new dues structure in the next 30 days.


The full board endorsed the concept and authorized management to establish local chapters for Minneapolis, Minnesota and Atlanta, Georgia. Minneapolis has an established poured wall association in existence for several years. Atlanta is in the formation process for its local chapter. Staff will look at prototypes of other associations as a model to ensure proper procedures are followed. The local chapter initiative has the potential of greatly expanding the size of CFA membership. The larger membership will give us a larger, more representative voice in the industry and allow us to add more member benefits.


The CFA will develop regional meetings beginning in 2005. These meetings are a cross between the summer meetings and the current foundation fundamentals seminars. The format, as it currently stands, includes a full day of concurrent meetings, one session for field personnel (presentations such as Foundation Fundamentals I, II, or III) and a session dealing with management topics for office and management personnel. The regional meeting concept allows members to travel to the venue, meet, and return to their jobs in a single day or day and a half. This makes the CFA programs more accessible to a greater number of members.


The board gave approval to proceed with the development of a “Manual of Practice” for concrete foundations. Jim Bartley heads this project. An outline of contents is currently being developed.


A comprehensive list of foundation contractors throughout the United States and Canada was approved. Attempts were made in the past for such a development but the advent of the Internet makes compilation of such listings more practical. CFA will develop of the list and ask for confirmation and additions from members, national suppliers, and others living and working in the target areas. Atlanta and Philadelphia were targeted as the first areas for list development.


Plans are moving forward for the 2006 summer meeting five-day cruise. Management is researching cruise ship lines, destinations, meeting space availability, and other specifics needed for planning this unique event.


Sharing of information between non-competing members is often cited as one of the chief benefits of membership in the CFA. This free flow of information occurs at the summer and winter meetings as well as a board and committee meetings. Members who are unable to attend these venues, however, miss out on this valuable forum. Peer groups of non-competing members in relatively close proximity to one-another will be developed in the near future. The National Association of Home Builders has a program called “Builder 20 Club” and the ASCC has Concrete Mix groups. CFA Peer groups will follow these models. The NAHB and ASCC groups will be evaluated for format and operations and the first model for the CFA will be established. Contact the CFA if you are interested in participating in this program.


A final updated version of the Lower Level Living brochure is scheduled for printing late this spring. It combines the information from the original brochure with the three tri-folds that have been in our inventory for several years. The CFA Standard will also be reprinted later this summer. A final draft of the revised document, incorporating some of the latest information from the ACI 332 Standard, as well as corrections and comments received from users of the document, will be reviewed at the summer meeting.

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Concrete FACTS, a publication of the Concrete Foundations Association, is THE voice for residential concrete industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the cast-in-place concrete industry. Subscriptions to Concrete FACTS is available to anyone involved or interested in the residential concrete industry as a service to your industry. Please contact CFA Headquarters to find out more about your free subscription or Email Us