From the Field

Aug. 1, 2011
EMCOR Group continues to contribute to the plight of children everywhere. With its recent efforts, it has now donated more than $950,000 to that worthy cause.

EMCOR Group Surpasses $950,000 in Giving to NCMEC
EMCOR Group continues to contribute to the plight of children everywhere. With its recent efforts, it has now donated more than $950,000 to that worthy cause.

In July, Phillip Megna, president, EMCOR Services Northeast; Robert Gallagher, president/CEO, J.C. Higgins; and James Lane, regional vice president/general manager of BTE, presented a $10,000 check to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC). The check was presented during ceremonies at the "EMCOR In Greater Boston" 4th Annual Golf Invitational in Sutton, MA.

EMCOR Services Northeast, J.C. Higgins, and Building Technology Engineers, Inc. (BTE) are subsidiaries of EMCOR Group, Inc.

"The participation of our clients in the EMCOR In Greater Boston Golf Invitational event has been exceptional, and EMCOR is proud to make a $10,000 donation to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children", Megna said. "EMCOR In Greater Boston is proud and thankful for the longtime and continued support of our clients which, in turn, has enabled us to provide funds for those who can't help themselves — our children," he added.

EMCOR's national "Taking Kid Safety To The Street" program was launched in 2055, in partnership with NCMEC and other partners in Britain and Canada. Since that time, EMCOR has helped recover 220 children in those three countries.

ASHRAE Recieves Support From Congress on Survey Restart
American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) has received Congressional support from co-chairs of the High-Performance Buildings Congressional Caucus regarding the Society's call to the federal government to resume work on the 2011 Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS). The 2011 edition of the survey was halted earlier this year after data collection errors were discovered related to the 2007 survey.

On July 13, Representatives Judy Biggert (R-IL) and Russ Carnahan (D-MO) spoke on the House floor in strong support of resuming work on the 2011 CBECS. Joining them were chairman and ranking democrat of the House Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee, Representatives Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) and Peter Visclosky (D-IN).

Carnahan quoted from a letter from ASHRAE issued in May, urging congress to allow work on the 2011 edition of the survey to continue. The letter was submitted to Congressional Record.

"If work on the 2011 CBECS data doesn't resume, government and industry will be forced to rely on data that’s nearly a decade old. This will result in potential missed opportunities to increase building efficiency," Carnahan said.

"Many members of the High Performance Building Coalition have come to us to express their concern about an updated CBECS since the latest data is nearly a decade old," Biggert said in her address to the House. "Substantial investments in the commercial building sector have been made since the last CBECS was published in 2003. The updated data is not only valuable to building owners looking to make improvements, but also necessary to inform the Annual Energy Outlook that we, in Congress, rely on."

Biggert reminded those in attendance that ASHRAE led the establishment of the HPB Congressional Caucus in 2008 to heighten awareness and inform policymakers about the major impact buildings have on health, safety, and welfare.

"There are opportunities to design, construct, and operate high-performance buildings that reflect our concern for these impacts," Biggert said.

ESCO Group Hosts Energy Awareness Meeting in DC
The ESCO Group recently sponsored an energy efficiency event for HVAC industry leaders congressional leaders in Washington, DC. The meeting at the Rayburn House of Representatives Offices Building was held to increase lawmakers’ awareness of initiatives that can impact energy efficiency in the US infrastructure.

The ESCO Group consists of:

  • ESCO Institute
  • HVAC Excellence
  • Carbon Monoxide Safety Association
  • Educational Standards Corporation
  • AC&R Safety Coalition
  • ESCO Press International.

The meeting covered the following topics:

  • Developing novel building technologies
  • Increasing energy efficiency in the built-environment
  • Assuring buildings have minimal climate change impacts and are able to respond to changes in the environment
  • Supporting the development of new standards
  • Codes and guidelines that address these concerns.

Speakers at the event included: Congressman Russ Carnahan (D-MO); Congresswoman Judy Biggert (R-IL); Doug Read, director of government affairs, ASHRAE; Henry Green, president of the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS); and Steven H. Allen, executive director of the Green Mechanical Council.

Mike Arndt, director of education for the United Association (UA) and Henry Green, president, National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) received awards for their leadership and commitment to high performance buildings.

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ASHRAE Conference Explores Variety Of Energy Related Topics
Perspectives on design styles and experiences from around the world were shared by nearly 2,000 built environment industry professionals at ASHRAE’s 2011 Annual Conference, June 26-29, in Montreal, Quebec. The theme of the Conference, "Sustainability Knows No Borders," highlighted the international reach of ASHRAE’s membership.

The ASHRAE Conference technical program featured nearly 300 presentations, nine educational courses and numerous social events. The meeting also featured nearly 400 meetings of technical, standards, and standing committees, developing guidance for the future of the industry and ASHRAE.

Technical program highlights included several sessions that provided new applications and current practices, such as: case studies of new buildings without commissioning, using building energy information in a smart grid, selecting fans for minimum energy usage, emerging wireless technologies for HVAC&R applications, improving performance of refrigeration systems, back to basics on airflow in unitary systems, energy recovery issues in dedicated outdoor-air systems, unique applications of photovoltaic systems, applications of high temperature cooling and low temperature heating and HVAC&R design checklists that work. Net zero energy-related sessions were the highest-attended, especially methodologies for determining environmental impacts of buildings, renewable energy technologies for achieving net-zero energy design, challenges in making green buildings a way of life, design strategies for net-zero energy residential buildings, combined heat and power for net zero energy buildings, and alternate heating, cooling and domestic water heating technologies to reduce building energy usage.

Ron Jarnagin assumed office as the Society's 2011-2012 president. His theme for the year, "Sustaining ASHRAE through Leadership," focuses on developing future leadership, building the Society’s global presence, and strengthening the industry.

Robert J. Ring Dies; was Chairman of Meyer & Depew
The HVAC industry recently mourned the passing of Robert J. Ring, 72, an industry leader who never lost a zest for learning and teaching. Ring died on Tuesday, June 28, at his home in Martinsville, NJ.

Prior to his retirement in 2006, Ring was the chairman of Meyer & Depew Heating & Cooling, Kenilworth, NJ, where he had worked since 1961. He was a Certificate Member Specialist (CMS)of the Refrigeration Service Engineers Society (RSES), and a member of the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE).

Robert J. Ring was born in Chicago, IL and later lived in Martinsville for 46 years. He also served in the U.S. Army Signal Corp from 1957-1959. He was stationed at Fort Monmouth, where he met his future wife, Gail, at a dance.

"We were young when we got married. Bob was a sheet metal installer and I had just graduated from nursing school," Mrs. Ring recalled. "He borrowed a book on air conditioning from the library, and that started our journey into a wonderful life. He was a wonderful, caring, and loving husband, but most important, my best friend."

Ring's son, Bobby, president of Meyer & Depew, said his father taught him to be independent and responsible.

"He expected us to do things well. As a result, he didn’t pass out many compliments; but when he did, you knew he was impressed and pleased with you. He taught me how to be a husband, father and a man," Ring said. "If anyone in our company needed help with a technical issue, dad was the go-to-guy for many years. He was a hands-on person. He led the technical efforts of our business for many years."

A.J. Perri, Sr., founder/CEO, A.J. Perri, Inc., Tinton Falls, NJ, met Ring in the mid-1970s, and served with him in the New Jersey Chapter of Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA).

"Bob loved the HVAC industry, and was dedicated to it," Perri says, "and he felt strongly about belonging to ACCA. Back then, we were fighting against unfair utility practices, and Bob was right in there with us. He was an honest and forthright businessman. He ran a decent business. He was a great guy."

Robert J. Ring was a lifelong traveler, and in retirement he traveled in his motor home with his wife. In addition to his wife and son Robert, Ring is survived by daughter Allison Abbott, son Timothy, and grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Donations in Mr. Ring's memory may be made to the American Cancer Society, 7 Ridgedale Ave., Suite 103, Cedar Knolls, NJ 07927.

New Projects for Haberberger, EMCOR's University Mechanical
Mechanical contracting firm Haberberger, Inc., St. Louis, MO, has acquired work on four new projects in the state of Missouri, including a high-rise residential project and three other educational facility projects, in St. Louis and St. Charles counties.

Brinkmann Constructors selected Haberberger for a project to expand the existing wastewater treatment facility at Francis Howell High School in St. Charles County. The Haberberger team will install two new membrane treatment tanks, converting existing tanks into pre-aeration tanks, and install all associated piping.

Haberberger was also recruited for projects at two separate universities. The first project involves extensive upgrades to and expansion of the cooling, UPS and wire management systems at Fontbonne University’s main data center in Ryan Hall. The second university project is to Design/Build a laboratory renovation.

Haberberger will also lend its Design/Build expertise to a heating system improvement project at the Whitehall Club, a high-rise condominium building near Clayton, MO.

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EMCOR Group, Inc. Norwalk, CT, announced in July that its University Mechanical & Engineering Contractors subsidiary, El Cajon, CA, has been awarded a contract for the installation of HVAC, mechanical, and plumbing systems at the General Services Administration's (GSA) San Ysidro Land Point of Entry, the busiest land port in the world, located in San Diego, California.

University Mechanical & Engineering Contractors (UMEC) will be responsible for the construction of the San Ysidro Land Point of Entry's new Head House Building, including the Central Plant equipped with a rainwater collection system and solar hot water system. UMEC will also be responsible for the installation of the space conditioning systems and garage ventilation for a new Narcotics Building. UMEC’s work will include construction of the primary and secondary northbound canopies, as well as associated mechanical site work. Off site, UMEC will prefabricate 46 primary booths with state-of-the-art HVAC and ventilation systems, as well as provide extensive underground plumbing and hydronic systems for future expansion of the Land Port.

HVAC and plumbing contractor Haller Enterprises Inc., Manheim Township, PA, has named Mike Snyder manager of its Palmyra office. He has 22 years of HVAC experience.

Mike Evangelista was named a comfort consultant, with a focus on residential HVAC sales in Berks County. He has four years of sales, video, and television production experience.

MCAA Pleased by FASB Ruling on Pension Plan Disclosure
The Mechanical Contractors Association of America (MCAA) recently praised the Financial Accounting Standards Board’s (FASB's) approval of a final multi-employer pension plan disclosure rule that removes the detrimental aspects of the original and subsequent proposed disclosures. Those requirements would have presented severe financial, competitive, and market risks to MCAA’s members, all of whom contribute to multi-employer plans.

"The adoption of this final rule concludes a year-long collaboration among FASB, MCAA and its Construction Industry FASB Coalition," notes MCAA General Counsel John McNerney. "The outcome is highly positive, and serves FASB's objective of enhancing disclosures and transparency about such plans, in a way that protects our industry from the serious, negative, collateral consequences that were posed in the original FASB proposal."

HVACR Week —Featuring HVAC Comfortech, the Commercial HVACR Symposium, and the Optimum Buidlings Conference — Sept. 21-23, Indianapolis, IN;

SMACNA — Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association, Annual Convention, Sept. 25-28, Colorado Springs, CO.

MSCA — Mechanical Service Contractors Association, Annual Conference, Oct. 9-12, Colorado Springs, CO;

HARDI — Heating, Air Conditioning, Refrigeration Distributors International —Annual Conference, Oct. 23-26, Maui, HI;

1971: Our August 1971 issue contained a story by editor Sam Milnark on the "giant" that was school renovation. It was a $5 billion market at the time. One indcator that the market was picking up speed was a survey on school renovations by School Product News. The study asked superintendents, business managers and school boards: Are you considering a renovation? How will it be financed? When will the renovation begin? Will it include HVAC? Statistics kept by the US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare showed 10,000 existing K-12 classrooms were air conditioned in 1970 . HEW was predicting 16,000 schools would have air conditioning by 1977. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory says that today, U.S. schools spend $7.8 billion on energy.

The Emerson Climate Technologies free e-Saver™ App is designed for the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, and Android. It helps contractors calculate annual cost savings comparisons for residential HVAC system replacement options. Specifically designed with contractor convenience in mind, the app has drop-down menus and pre-populated content to make it easy to use. Up to three options are provided to help the contractor explain the annual cost savings to the homeowner.

Team Management Systems' free Mobile Work Order for iPad, iPhone, and iPod not only looks like a standard paper work order, but also works like one. The technician simply enters dispatch times, material used, equipment serviced, and what was done to resolve the problem on one easy to navigate screen. Prices are automatically calculated based on the customer’s billing rates, and a professional-looking invoice is generated for the customer to sign right on the screen.

Atlanta-based Bardi Heating & Air Conditioning has been named one of Atlanta’s "Top 100 Workplaces" by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, in an independent survey of employees. Some 166 companies competed for the honor in their size category.

What's Bardi’s secret? President Alex Bardi offers five tips to help ensure employee satisfaction and the long-term success of a contracting team.

1. Give employees a voice. Bardi hosts an open forum quarterly, or monthly if needed, where all employees can address concerns.

2. Show employees a career path. Don’t just hire people to fill a position. Hire to fulfill their passions.

3. Job stability. The Bardi company plans ahead for both slow and peak seasons, to guarantee employees have job security.

4. Follow an ironclad customer satisfaction policy. Armed with the knowledge that clients are protected, no matter what, Bardi employees can generate business proactively and not worry about corporate backsliding or fine print.

5. Honesty as a core value. Employees are never put in a precarious situation to "get all they can" from customers.

Find more information for each tip by visiting

About the Author

Terry McIver | Content Director - CB

A career publishing professional, Terence 'Terry' McIver has served three diverse industry publications in varying degrees of responsibility since 1987, and worked in marketing communications for a major U.S. corporation.He joined the staff of Contracting Business magazine in April 2005.

As director of content for Contracting Business, he produces daily content and feature articles for CB's 38,000 print subscribers and many more Internet visitors. He has written hundreds, if not two or three, pieces of news, features and contractor profile articles for CB's audience of quality HVACR contractors. He can also be found covering HVACR industry events or visiting with manufacturers and contractors. He also has significant experience in trade show planning.