Tag Archive for 'construction'

ARTBA Reports Modest Growth for 2018 Transportation Construction Market

2018 Wells Fargo Forecast Highlights

Tom Ewing’s Environmental Update

*  News from Michigan about two contaminants found in groundwater used for drinking water.  The report forced the anguished question: just how isolated or singular was MI’s struggle with lead, or is lead just one element in a witches brew with other poisons only awaiting discovery?  The contaminants are perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), ubiquitous compounds used in everything from carpets to insect baits to dental floss.  Companies are phasing out production but exposure is widespread.  Some good news: recent data indicates declining levels in human blood.  Health effects?  No solid evidence about any one thing.  Last week Michigan DEQ set a drinking water criterion for the compounds: 0.07 μg/L (70 parts per trillion), based on an EPA health advisory.  With a standard in place, the state can now take legal action against polluters.
*  The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announced draft guidelines for the use of a “Design Envelope” approach in Construction and Operations Plans (COPs) for offshore wind energy facilities.  BOEM says developers wanted this design approach, standard in some European countries for permitting processes.  The change gives flexibility in certain project-design decisions—e.g., which turbines to use—at a more commercially advantageous time in the development process.  BOEM writes this change results partly from the Administration’s regulatory streamlining work; it could reduce redundant environmental reviews while still maintaining appropriate safeguards.  The agency holds an introductory webinar end of January.
*  Department of Energy (DOE) and many other agencies started to make available their semiannual Unified Agendas of Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions (Agenda), including Regulatory Plans.  The Agendas are a government-wide compilation of upcoming and ongoing regulatory activity, including a brief description of each rulemaking and a timetable for action. The Agendas also include a list of regulatory actions completed since publication of the last Agenda. One important rulemaking under development at DOE is called “Modifying the Energy Conservation Program to Implement a Market-Based Approach.”  Last November, DOE published a request for information on how this idea might work.  Comments are due in February.

Tom Ewing
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National Equipment Dealers, LLC Acquires Three Independent Equipment Dealers in Fastest Growing Regions in the USA

National Equipment Dealers, LLC Acquires Three Independent Equipment Dealers in Fastest Growing Regions in the USA

In a multi-faceted transaction that closed on Friday, January 5, National Equipment Dealers acquired Four Seasons Equipment, May Heavy Equipment, and Earthmovers Equipment, as well as some assets of International Iron.

This is a truly exceptional opportunity for NED to expand in what is recognized as the three fastest growing economic areas in the US: Texas (Houston and Dallas), the Carolinas (Raleigh, Lexington, Charlotte, Columbia, Greenville/Spartanburg, Charleston) and Florida (Orlando).

Financing for the merger and ongoing operations was supplied by a syndication of four banks led by BOK Financial. The other participating banks are Fifth Third Bank, Bank of the West and First Tennessee Bank.

Mitch Nevins, CEO, and Kerry Vickar, Chairman, state that employees of each company are expected to continue their respective jobs in the same previous manner as no operational changes will be made upon bringing these businesses together. They believe collective success will be realized by all employees working together, sharing best business practices and equipment fleets, and benefitting from the synergies of a larger company footprint.

Collectively NED represents 10 major manufacturers across a three-state territory, each embracing the combined operations in NED. It is expected that there will be a significant growth in size, both in terms of the number of locations and employees, as well as by geographic diversification, that will provide substantially enhanced opportunities for them as well as NED.

FCA Announces Plan to Invest More than $1 billion in Michigan Plant, Add 2,500 New Jobs and Pay $2,000 Bonus to U.S. Employees; Actions Supported by U.S. Tax Reform

  • Investment will modernize Warren Truck Assembly to produce Ram Heavy Duty
  • Ram Heavy Duty truck production will relocate from Mexico to Michigan in 2020
  • Plant will add 2,500 new U.S. jobs to support production of heavy-duty truck
  • Approximately 60,000 FCA employees in the U.S. will receive special bonus payment
  • Total U.S. investment grows to more than $10 billion since 2009, with over 25,000 jobs created to date
  • Production move solidifies the U.S. as the global manufacturing hub for Ram products

FCA announced today two actions made possible in part by the passage of U.S. tax reform legislation late last year – an additional investment in its U.S. manufacturing operations and a special payment to recognize employees for their continued efforts towards the success of the Company.

First, the Company confirmed that it will invest more than $1 billion to modernize the Warren Truck Assembly Plant (Michigan) to produce the next generation Ram Heavy Duty truck, which will relocate from its current production location in Saltillo, Mexico, in 2020. This investment is in addition to the announcement made in January 2017 which committed to spending a portion of $1 billion in Warren Truck Assembly to expand the Jeep® product line with the addition of the all-new Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer. The Saltillo Truck Assembly Plant will be repurposed to produce future commercial vehicles for global distribution.

To support the increased volume at the Warren facility, 2,500 new jobs will be created, above and beyond the jobs announced as part of the January 2017 announcement.

Second, the Company confirmed that it will make a special bonus payment of $2,000 to approximately 60,000 FCA hourly and salaried employees in the U.S., excluding senior leadership. The payment, which recognizes employees for their continued commitment to the Company’s success, will be made in the second quarter of this year, and will be in addition to any profit sharing and salaried performance bonuses that employees would otherwise be eligible to receive in 2018. The special bonus will be paid to all eligible employees of the FCA automotive and components operations in the U.S.

“These announcements reflect our ongoing commitment to our U.S. manufacturing footprint and the dedicated employees who have contributed to FCA’s success,” said Sergio Marchionne, Chief Executive Officer, FCA. “It is only proper that our employees share in the savings generated by tax reform and that we openly acknowledge the resulting improvement in the U.S. business environment by investing in our industrial footprint accordingly.”

Investment in U.S. Manufacturing Grows
FCA has invested $10 billion in its U.S. manufacturing operations since June 2009. Most recently, the Company announced investments totaling $3.5 billion, with the addition of 3,700 new jobs, to strengthen its U.S. manufacturing base, and align U.S. capacity to extend the Jeep and Ram product lines.

Those investments and related actions involved production shifts at three plants in Illinois, Ohio, and Michigan to gain the capacity for the Jeep Cherokee, Jeep Wrangler and Ram Light Duty truck, and the introduction of three new Jeep models at plants in Ohio and Michigan.

The investments include:

  • $350 million in the Belvidere Assembly Plant (Illinois) to produce the Jeep Cherokee, which moved from Toledo, Ohio in 2017. More than 300 new jobs were added to support production.
  • $700 million in the Toledo Assembly Complex (Ohio) to retool the North plant to produce the next generation Jeep Wrangler. Approximately 700 new jobs will be added to support production.
  • $1.5 billion in the Sterling Heights Assembly Plant (Michigan) to build the next generation Ram 1500 truck. More than 700 new jobs will be added to support production.
  • $1 billion in the south plant of the Toledo Assembly Complex to prepare the facility to produce an all-new Jeep truck, and in the Warren Truck Assembly Plant to modernize the plant to build the all-new Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer. More than 2,000 new jobs will be added at these two plants to support production.

The plant investment actions announced today are subject to the negotiation and final approval of incentives by state and local entities.

About FCA
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (“FCA”), the seventh-largest automaker in the world based on total annual vehicle sales, is an international automotive group. FCA is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “FCAU” and on the Mercato Telematico Azionario under the symbol “FCA.”