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AUGUST | 2021 UCANE Interview :

Senator A dam Gomez

• UCANE Contractors Participate in National Trench Safety Stand Down Week • Boston Rivers were Pretty Clean in 2020, but Sewage is Still a Problem Says EPA



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OFFICERS President MARCELLA ALBANESE Albanese Bros., Inc.

President-Elect RYAN McCOURT

5 President’s Message:

Waiting for a Cash Windfall is a Mistake

7 Legislative Update:

• Legislature to Hold ARPA Hearings • FY22 Budget Passed; Clean Water Trust’s Contract Assistance Line-Item Survives Potential Cut • Baker-Polito Administration Awards Over $17 Million in Funding for Dams and Coastal Infrastructure • Massachusetts Unemployment Trending Down & Job Estimates Trending Up • News in Brief

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17 UCANE Interview:

Senator Adam Gomez (D-Chicopee)

21 Save the Date: UCANE’s 9th Annual Trade Show 23 UCANE Contractors Participate in National Trench Safety Stand Down Week 27 Boston Rivers were Pretty Clean in 2020, but Sewage is Still a Problem Says EPA 35 Under the Hard Hat with UCANE’s Officers and Board Members: Erik Sveden, C. N. Wood Company, Inc.

41 Insurance Perspective:

Update: Current Construction Insurance Leadership

42 MWRA 2020 Drinking Water Test Results: Water is Essential 53 Safety Corner:

Confined Spaces: Do Not Become Another Statistic

57 Get to Know Your UCANE Associate Members: Scrap-It, Inc./Minichiello Brothers, Inc.

59 Filling the Labor Pool – Post-Pandemic, Construction Industry Wants Workers to Jump In 65 Move Your BIZ to a Higher Level Editor: Jeff Mahoney, Senior Editor: Anne Klayman, Associate Editor Suzanne Hatch, Magazine Designer/Assistant Editor: Sherri Klayman, Head Writer/Assistant Editor: Mike Lenihan Construction Outlook Chair: Marcella Albanese Editorial Board: Marcella Albanese, Ryan McCourt, Brian Cooney, & Chris Valenti CONSTRUCTION OUTLOOK published monthly by the Utility Contractors’ Association of New England, Inc., 300 Congress Street, Suite 101, Quincy, MA 02169; Tel: 617.471.9955; Fax: 617.471.8939; Email:; Website: Statements of fact and opinion are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of UCANE and the Construction Outlook editorial board and staff. Subscriptions are included in dues payments for UCANE members. Presorted Standard postage paid at Brockton, MA. POSTMASTER, please send form #3579 to Construction Outlook, Crown Colony Office Park, 300 Congress Street, Suite 101, Quincy, MA 02169.


Executive Director



Waiting for a Cash Windfall is a Mistake There is good news and progress in UCANE’s ongoing efforts to advocate for additional funding for water and sewer infrastructure projects. In Washington, after years of inaction, momentum is growing to pass a bipartisan infrastructure bill. The current package includes the 2021 Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Act, which calls for $35 billion in new investment in water infrastructure, primarily through the State Revolving Fund (SRF) programs. These numbers represent a doubling of funding compared to recent funding allocations. In addition, separate program funding for lead remediation and funding to address PFAS contamination is included. If passed, it would represent the largest investment in clean water infrastructure in history.


t the state level, our elected officials are currently considering ways to spend close to $5 billion in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. Governor Baker has recommended $400 million for water infrastructure projects. While the Legislature has not yet recommended a funding level, ARPA specifically states that funds should be expended on projects that improve access to clean drinking water, and improve wastewater and stormwater infrastructure systems. There is unanimous recognition that after years of neglect, we must provide additional investment for our aging pipes and treatment plants. The flip side of these positive developments is that municipalities and awarding authorities are being tempted to delay much-needed projects until this potential windfall of cash is received. To continue to “kick the can” down the road on these critical projects would be short-sighted. As with everything in Washington, there is no guarantee that an infrastructure bill will pass. And the State Legislature has already indicated that they want to take time to deliberate and determine priorities and funding levels for the ARPA funds. While we appreciate the need to be fiscally prudent and not rush to spend taxpayer dollars, there should be little debate over the urgency needed to address the $18 billion to $21 billion deficit in water infrastructure funding in Massachusetts over the next 20 years. We are already seeing municipalities take a “wait and see” approach. AUGUST, 2021

This year’s MassDEP Intended Use Plan (IUP) list of approved water infrastructure projects included $691 million in new work. However, over $116 million of this work did not receive local approval and will not come out to bid this year. Many of these projects are long overdue or under court order to be completed, and delays will only serve to exacerbate costs. We need to make sure that municipalities and awarding authorities are not penalized for being proactive and addressing their infrastructure needs now, and not waiting until, if and when, federal monies become available. Any additional funds that are made available in the coming year should not just benefit future projects, but also be used to ease the taxpayer burden for those municipalities who are rightfully moving forward with projects this year.

UCANE members stand ready, willing, and able to complete these vital infrastructure projects, and we are encouraged that additional funds may indeed be on the way. However, there is an urgency for our elected leaders to work towards a plan that allows municipalities and contractors to properly plan for future needs. Otherwise, our communities will be left holding on to a lottery ticket that they are never able to cash in. n





AUGUST, 2021

Mark Molloy, Esq., Cascade Strategies LLC


Legislature to Hold ARPA Hearings

s detailed in last month’s Construction Outlook Legislative Update, the Massachusetts legislature pumped the brakes on the Governor’s plan to immediately spend the Commonwealth’s $5.3 billion share of the America Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). While the state's ARPA funds were delivered in mid-May, House and Senate leaders sent a veto-proof bill to the Governor shortly thereafter, which prevented the funds from being released without legislative approval. In response, the Governor filed his spending proposal as legislation, House Bill 3922, to outline his plans for allocating $2.915 billion of the state's total. In July, the respective Committees on Ways and Means and the House Committee on Federal Stimulus held the first in a series of public hearings to gauge potential areas of need for the ARPA funding. At the initial hearing, Governor Baker outlined his plan to put more than half of the state's ARPA allocation to work now on housing and homeownership supports, job training, water and sewer infrastructure, addiction treatment, and other areas. As drafted, the Governor's plan calls for $1 billion for housing and homeownership supports; $1 billion for infrastructure investments, specifically $400 million to water infrastructure; $450 million for economic development; $240 million for workforce development, and $225 million for health care. Under Governor Baker's proposal, $2 billion would be deposited in the federal COVID-19 Response Fund that lawmakers created for purposes of future project decisions. The Baker-Polito Administration has been urging the legislature to act immediately in releasing the federal stimulus money. Of the ComAUGUST, 2021

monwealth’s $5.3 billion allocation under ARPA, about $400 million of these funds have already been used, including $109 million in local aid for Chelsea, Everett, Methuen, Randolph, and $75 million to subsidize the state's new COVID-19 emergency Sick Leave Law. That said, the legislature has made it clear that the ARPA funding, which can be committed and spent on projects until 2026, is more than a fleeting “shot in the arm.” In talking about its “generational” impact and “once-in-a-lifetime” impact on the state’s economy and various industries, House and Senate leadership have argued for a more deliberative approach to the distribution of these funds – one that identifies short, mid- and longterm needs. The respective Committees on Ways and Means and the House Committee on Federal Stimulus recently announced that they will hold four more public hearings after Labor Day. Of note, the public hearings will be focused on the following topics: (a) health care/public health/ mental health/human services; (b) economic development/transportation/arts & tourism/climate/ infrastructure; (c) education/social equity/safety/ families and; (d) an open public hearing for all and any interested parties to weigh in. UCANE plans to closely monitor and participate in the ARPA funding process to ensure that water infrastructure investment remains a significant part of the discussion. In the meantime, to review Governor Baker’s proposed funding plan, HB3922, An Act Relative to Immediate COVID Recovery Needs, please visit: Bills/192/H3922. continued on page 9



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Legislative Update continued from page 7

FY22 Budget Passed; Clean Water Trust’s Contract Assistance Line-Item Survives Potential Cut


he Conference Committee on the FY2022 budget reported its negotiated agreement in early July. Of particular note to UCANE members, the Conference Committee supported the Clean Water Trust’s (CWT’s) contract assistance line-item (1599-0093) by funding the lineitem at $63.8 million, which represents level funding from fiscal year 2021. The line-item, which provides the CWT with funding to address debt service, provides an indicator of sorts for the Commonwealth’s efforts to tackle its $18 billion to $21 billion water infrastructure gap. After the final Senate FY22 budget funded the contract assistance line-item at slightly over the $39 million, a number of concerned organizations began advocating for including the House’s FY22 appropriation, $63.8 million, within the final Conference Committee report. Given that the Governor’s original budget allocation was lower than proposed by the Conference Committee, a number of stakeholder organizations advocated for Baker-Polito’s support for the line-item. Accordingly, the American Council of Engineering Companies of Massachusetts (ACECMA), Massachusetts Water Works Association (MWWA), Massachusetts Water Environment Association (MWEA), Massachusetts Coalition for Water Resources Stewardship (MCWRS), the Massachusetts Municipal Association

AUGUST, 2021

(MMA), the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority Advisory Board (MWRA Advisory Board), and UCANE, all weighed in with the Governor in a joint letter. The letter urged the Governor to level fund the lineitem. In particular, the seven organizations wrote: “A well-maintained water infrastructure system is key to maintaining economic growth and creating new jobs. To this end, the future of the Commonwealth’s water infrastructure depends on increasing, not reducing, our investment in drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater systems. Returning the funding for the contract assistance line-item to an amount last seen in FY02 is a step backwards. Accordingly, we respectfully request that you approve the funding ($63,383,680) for line-item 1599-0093 contained in HB4002 to ensure that we continue to move forward.” Governor Baker signed the Massachusetts legislature’s FY22 budget proposal with relatively few vetoes. With respect to the matter at hand, Governor Baker approved the legislature’s appropriation for the contract assistance line-item. UCANE appreciates both the legislature’s and the Governor’s continued commitment to this important line-item.

continued on page 11






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AUGUST, 2021

Legislative Update continued from page 9


Baker-Polito Administration Awards Over $17 Million in Funding for Dams and Coastal Infrastructure

ate July saw the Baker-Polito Administration announce that they made over $17.3 million in grants available to address failing dams, coastal infrastructure, and levees across the Commonwealth. According to a press release from the Office of the Governor, the “official” announcement was made by Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides, and state and local officials at Haskell Pond Dam in the City of Gloucester. The grants, which were awarded by the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs’ (EEA) Dam and Seawall Program, will support permitting and construction projects in Acton, Ashfield, Braintree, Brockton, Chicopee, Dracut, Dudley, Essex, Gardner, Gloucester, Hull, Ipswich, Leominster, Marshfield, New Bedford, Northborough, Oxford, Peabody, Quincy, Salem, Saugus, Somerset, Stow, Springfield, Wareham, Weymouth, the Wildlands Trust (Kingston), and Worcester. With these 32 new grants, the Dam and Seawall Program has now provided over $95 million in grants and loans to address deficient dams, seawalls, and levees since the program began in 2013. The Administration also used the occasion to tout its ARPA funding plan. As part of the Administration’s proposal to jumpstart the Commonwealth’s economic recovery and support residents hardest-hit by COVID-19, such as lower-wage workers and communities of color, Governor Baker would also direct $900 million to key energy and environmental initiatives, including $300 million to support climate resilient infrastructure. The funding would be distributed through programs like EEA’s Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Program and would fund priority climate adaptation projects and investments aligned with the priorities identified in the state

hazard mitigation and climate adaptation plan To learn more about the projects awarded funding under this eight year old program, please visit: https:// continued on page 13

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Legislative Update continued from page 11

Massachusetts Unemployment Trending Down and Job Estimates Trending Up


he Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development (EOLWD) announced in mid-July that the state’s June total unemployment rate was down one-tenth of a percentage point at 4.9 percent following a revision to the May unemployment rate of 5.0 percent. The analysis, based on the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) revised modeling, indicates preliminary job estimates in Massachusetts of 9,400 jobs in June. This follows last month’s gain of 9,200 jobs. Over the month, the private sector added 5,400 jobs as gains occurred across six sectors, led by Leisure and Hospitality, and Education and Health Services. Since December 2020, Massachusetts has gained 101,200 jobs. From June 2020 to June 2021, BLS estimates Massachusetts gained 292,800 jobs. Gains occurred in all sectors led by Leisure and Hospitality, and Trade, Transportation and Utilities. According to a press release from EOLWD, the June unemployment rate was 1.0 percentage point below the national rate of 5.9 percent reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The labor force increased by 4,900 from 3,702,100 in May, as 8,000 more residents were employed and 3,000 fewer residents were unemployed over the month. Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was down by 9.9 percentage points. The state’s labor force participation rate, the total number of residents 16 or older who worked or were unemployed and actively sought work in the last four weeks, was up 0.1 percentage point at 65.7 percent following a revision to the May rate of 65.6 percent. Compared to June 2020, the labor force participation rate is up 0.5 percentage points. Of particular note: • Construction lost 800 (-0.5%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 14,900 (+10.2%) jobs were added. • Professional and Business Services gained 900 (+0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 39,300 (+7.0%) jobs were added. • Trade, Transportation, and Utilities lost 200 (0.0%) jobs over the month. Over the AUGUST, 2021

year, 62,300 (+12.6%) jobs were added. Overall, the June estimates, the most complete figure to date, shows 3,526,500 Massachusetts residents were employed and 180,500 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,707,000. The unemployment rate dropped one-tenth of a percentage point over the month after a revision to the May unemployment rate of 5.0 percent. Over the month, the June labor force was up by 4,900 from 3,702,100 in May, with 8,000 more residents employed, and 3,000 fewer residents unemployed. The labor force participation rate, the share of the working-age population employed and unemployed, was 65.7 percent. The labor force was up 23,300 from the 3,683,700 June 2020 estimate, as 387,800 more residents were employed and 364,500 fewer residents were unemployed. For more information, the detailed labor market information is available at continued on page 15





AUGUST, 2021

Legislative Update continued from page 13

News in Brief

Turco Leaves EOPSS; Reidy Named Acting Secretary. Secretary of the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security Secretary, Tom Turco, ended his tenure within state government on the last Saturday of July after a public service career that began in the 1990s. The Governor’s Office announced Undersecretary for Law Enforcement Terrence Reidy has been named the Acting Secretary. Secretary Reidy has served as undersecretary for law enforcement since 2019. Prior to his work at EOPSS, Reidy was an Assistant Attorney General in the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office and Assistant District Attorney in Worcester and Suffolk Counties. His experience included supervising the Attorney General’s Enterprise, Major Crimes, Cyber Crime Unit, and the Worcester District Attorney’s Gang Unit. In Suffolk County, Reidy was promoted from District Court Prosecutor to Superior Court where he served in the Gang and Safe Neighborhood Initiative Units. Reidy also dedicates time to volunteering as a coach for several youth sports organizations. He completed his undergraduate studies at Colby College and earned his juris doctor from New England School of Law. Tesler Removes “Acting” Title; Names New Transportation Secretary. July saw Governor Baker make the formal appointment of Mr. Jamy Tesler as the Secretary of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. Mr. Tesler, previously the Registrar of Motor Vehicles, was named “acting” Secretary after former Secretary Stephanie Pollack left the Baker-Polito administration for a job with the federal government. Secretary Tesler has worked more than 16 years in the public sector, including stints as the General Counsel to the Massachusetts State Lottery, Deputy General Counsel in the Office of the Governor and Deputy General Counsel for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA). Secretary Tesler is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and received his law degree from the University of Michigan. Legislature Passes; Governor Signs $300 Million Chapter 90 Funding. The Legislature passed the annual “Chapter 90” road and bridge funding bill in July after several weeks of negotiation. The bill contains the now familiar amount of $200 million in annual financing for local road and bridge repairs, with $150 million spread across six grant programs to pay for bus lanes, electric vehicles and other municipal transportation projects. In particular, the bill also includes grant funding in the amount of $25 million in additional borrow-

AUGUST, 2021

ing for the municipal small bridge program, $25 million for the bottleneck relief program, $25 million for transit-supportive infrastructure, $25 million for municipal bus transit grants, $25 million for municipal mass transit access, and $25 million for electric vehicles and electric-vehicle infrastructure that would be available to cities and towns, as well as regional transit authorities, was included in the legislation. More Municipalities Seeking Input into ARPA Funds Use; City of New Bedford the Latest. The City of New Bedford has launched a website, along with a public survey, to solicit input from city residents and organizations about the ARPA funds awarded to the City. Through a survey on the City website, residents, business owners, and nonprofit organizations in the city can weigh in with their priorities on the best way ARPA funds can be used to benefit New Bedford. The City will also announce various further options for public input to ensure all voices are heard. As additional opportunities are scheduled, they will be posted on the City’s ARPA website. The City of New Bedford’s ARPA website can be found at: n

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AUGUST, 2021

Senator Adam Gomez (D-Chicopee)

In 2014, Senator Gomez was organized by a social justice group called Neighbor to Neighbor. This is where his passion for public service began. During that time, he was working on a coalition called Jobs not Jails, which was instrumental in passing sweeping criminal justice reform in 2017. At the same time, Senator Gomez decided to run for his neighborhood board. He spent 18 months on that community civic association and following that, decided to run an 80-day campaign against a 3-term incumbent for the Springfield City Council in Ward 1, which encompasses the Latino community. After a successful campaign, the Senator spent the next five years serving the City of Springfield as a member of the City Council and as the Chair of Economic Development. He was also elected Vice-President of the Springfield City Council in 2020. On September 1, 2020 he was elected Democratic nominee for the State Senate seat for the Hampden District, ousting a 5-term incumbent. As a Boricua from Springfield, this was a life changing moment for him. Today, as the newly elected State Senator, he serves as Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Children, Families, and Person’s with Disabilities for the 2021-2022 legislative session. If you had told him five years ago that he’d be serving as a State Senator, he wouldn’t have thought it was possible. As a person of Puerto Rican descent, Senator Gomez is honored to be the first Afro-Latino to serve in the Massachusetts State Senate, and even more honored to serve the Hampden District - Springfield, West Springfield, and Chicopee.


As costs continue to rise, please give your thoughts on how the state will continue to fund local aid to cities and towns to help support basic municipal services, specifically drinking water, wastewater, and our underground utility infrastructure.


My district suffers from annual rate hikes as a symptom of a crumbling water infrastructure. Prior to being elected as a state official, I signed up to be a member of the WaterNow Alliance. WaterNow’s core objectives include identifying, financing, implementing, and communicating about sustainable water strategies and solutions. With President Biden’s new Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework, I am also in a position to gather the attention of my federally elected delegation, which includes the Chair of House Ways and Means, Congressman Richard E. Neal.

AUGUST, 2021

We need to be strategic in using future federal relief dollars to support such infrastructure needs, but we must also be creative in terms of how we can create new sustainable revenue for our local communities without straining consumer wallets.


As a Western Mass legislator, what are the greatest challenges for your district and region with regards to continued economic recovery and future growth?


The greatest challenges in my district are housing, job security, and child care. Prior to the rise of unemployment during COVID-19, families were already struggling with access to high-quality child care, and the industry faced a serious capacity issue. It is well known that Massachusetts has some of the highcontinued on page 19



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Interview continued from page 17 est child care costs in the nation. Without adequate and affordable child care, families cannot enter or remain in the workforce, and child care workers will not be able to afford to remain in the field if the proper investments to support them are not implemented. In terms of housing, the lift of the national eviction moratorium will be detrimental to the quality of life in my district, and really the entire state. The cost of rent continues to rise while wages remain stagnant – this is not sustainable. We are at a time when an equitable recovery package is necessary to support our disproportionately impacted communities, so that they may come out of this pandemic with a roof still over their heads. Ultimately, the pandemic has exhausted our health care system, worsened our existing housing crisis, and severely impacted the economic footprint of our small businesses, especially the BIPOC community. We need targeted aid to ensure that our most impacted communities and businesses are supported as we continue to recover from the pandemic.



As a first term Senator, how have you dealt with the challenges COVID-19 has presented in interacting with your con-

AUGUST, 2021


Since day one of being sworn in, my office has been very responsive to constituents needs and we have been able to take advantage of the virtual option to engage with constituents. However, working remotely and virtually hasn’t been easy. It has been very difficult to conduct in-person meetings, while balancing a preference to be active in the community. COVID-19 has no doubt taken away opportunities to engage directly with the community, whether that be meetings in the District and in Boston; to be effective you need to be on Beacon Hill. Nevertheless, my office continues to engage as much as possible with the community while working remotely, ensuring that they themselves are protected, as well as the community. As the state’s reopening continues, our “new normal” and daily operations continue to evolve.

Q: A:

Can you share some of your other priorities for this legislative session?

As a newly elected State Senator, I filed a robust policy agenda for this session. A few priorities include, legalizing sports wagering (S.264), housing assistance bills (S.110 and S. 111), and legislation to support the child care industry (S.339), to name a few. n



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UCANE’s 9th Annual Trade Show 3:00 PM - September 22, 2021

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If you are not currently advertising in Construction Outlook, we hope you will consider placing an ad. Our monthly magazine showcases your products and services to contractors and municipal officials who use them. Our Trade Show is a great opportunity to meet with UCANE members and guests face-to-face.

In addition to placing your ad in our magazine, it will also be on our website, and in our monthly E-Newsletter. Space is limited, so if you would like to place an ad in our magazine and reserve a booth at our Trade Show, please contact Suzanne Hatch as soon as possible at

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AUGUST, 2021

UCANE Contractors Participate in National Trench Safety Stand Down Week


he week of June 14-18, 2021 was designated as Trench Safety Stand Down (TSSD) Week at construction sites across the country. First championed in 2017 by the National Utility Contractor’s Association (NUCA) in a partnership with OSHA, the annual event has seen participation growth each year. All construction work poses some degree of risk of accidental injury to workers, especially to those with insufficient safety training. Accidents in excavation and trenching work can often be catastrophic, due to the nature of the work. That is why training programs like the 2021 TSSD are so important. Utility, Heavy Highway, and Excavation Contractors from every state devoted a portion of their day toward training their employees on working safely around trench excavations. Company Safety Officers and Foremen gathered their crews together for “Tool Box Talks,” power-point presentations, or hands-on demonstrations on how to stay alert and be safe when it comes to trenching operations. OSHA area offices across the country offered their assistance to local contractors during the week and in the Boston area OSHA Compliance Specialist Peter Barletta offered his valuable services to the industry. Peter

was “hands-on” assisting UCANE members P. Gioioso and Sons, Inc and D’Allessandro Corp. with training sessions.

continued on page 25

Thanks to the following companies that participated in the UCANE sponsored effort: Albanese Brothers, Inc. Albanese D&S, Inc. Aqua Line Utility, Inc. Badger Daylighting Baltazar Contractors, Inc. C. C. Construction, Inc. J. Derenzo Company FED. CORP. Feeney Brothers Utility Services W. L. French Excavating Corporation P. Gioioso and Sons, Inc. Metro Equipment Corporation Robert B. Our Co., Inc. RJV Construction Corp. Sunbelt Rentals Tascon Corporation Umbro and Sons Construction Corp. United Rentals Trench Safety WES Construction Corp. R. H. White Construction Co., Inc.

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TSSD continued from page 23 Twenty UCANE contractors participated in this year’s TSSD. During TSSD Week they trained 2037 construction workers at 324 jobsites across New England. Their efforts once again established UCANE as one of the top contractor associations in the country for total workers trained during this year’s TSSD. Also retaining their number one position as UCANE’s top trainer was Feeney Brothers Utility Services (Dorchester, MA). W. L. French Excavating Corp. (Billerica, MA) and J. Derenzo Corp. (Brockton, MA) round out the Top 3. UCANE companies that participated in this safety program will receive a formal certificate from OSHA, suitable for framing, commending their efforts and dedication to Trench Safety. In addition, participating employees will receive 2021 TSSD hard hat stickers. n

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AUGUST, 2021

Boston Rivers were Pretty Clean in 2020, but Sewage is Still a Problem Says EPA

The Charles River looking east and the Boston skyline. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

It’s report card time — for the Charles, Mystic and Neponset Rivers, that is. As part of an ongoing effort to monitor water quality in these rivers and raise awareness about pollution, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) uses data collected by local watershed groups about bacteria levels to calculate annual letter grades. Like in years past, most segments of the Charles and Mystic Rivers received As or Bs, indicating that the water met swimming or boating standards most of the time. (This was the first year the Neponset River received a report card, and it too got mostly As and Bs.) But there were also several Cs issued for parts of the Mystic and Neponset, meaning that the water quality met swimming standards only some of the time and boating standards most of the time. And, owing to ongoing problems with stormwater runoff and sewage, all three rivers had at least one D or F. (The full report cards for each River and its tributaries are listed at the end of this story.) AUGUST, 2021

“One of the major problems that we found in these rivers is sewer connections that are illegally hooked up to storm drains,” says Ken Moraff, director of EPA Region 1’s Water Division. “Sewage is supposed to go into sewer pipes that lead to Deer Island and get treated, but sometimes we find a pipe that will go into a stormwater drain. So when it rains — or sometimes even in dry weather — there can be a continuous flow of sewage into a water body.” Finding these illicit hookups and then fixing them is no easy task, but over the last few decades, cities and towns in the region have made progress. In 2017, for example, Chelsea identified two illicit hookups — one from a big apartment complex and one from the New England Produce Center — and rerouted the waste. The following year, the Island End River ended its failing streak and got a B. In addition to these improper hookups, two other sewage-related infrastructure problems continue to plague these rivers: combined sewer overflows continued on page 29



Boston Rivers continued from page 27 (CSOs) and leaky wastewater pipes. Both allow untreated sewage to enter the rivers, and during particularly rainy weather can cause E. coli concentrations to spike to dangerous levels. “Much municipal effort goes into the detective work of hunting down these sources and eliminating them,” Andy Hrycyna of the Mystic River Watershed Association writes in an email. He adds that the city of Cambridge has invested more than $150 million in separating combined pipes to help address serious water quality problems in Alewife Brook. Regionally, the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) has also worked to repair old pipes and close CSO outfalls. In the last few decades, it has eliminated 35 CSO outfalls, which has reduced wet weather sewage discharges by approximately 87%. While the EPA’s report cards reflect the level of E. coli in the water, pollutants from stormwater runoff — like lawn fertilizer, road salt and gasoline, to name a few — also create serious water quality issues; fertilizers in particular can lead to dangerous cyanobacteria blooms during the summer. According to the EPA, these blue-green algae blooms in the region “have occurred with greater frequency over the past several years,” and scientists say climate change is exacerbating the problem.

AUGUST, 2021

There’s certainly a lot of work to be done to improve water quality in the Charles, Mystic and Neponset Rivers in the future, says Deborah Szaro, acting EPA Region 1 administrator. But these annual report cards are also a testament to how much cleaner these rivers — and Boston Harbor, which they all flow into — are today than they were 30 or 40 years ago. “In the 1980s, Boston Harbor was really one of the most toxic harbors in America,” she says. “The wastewater treatment plants were falling apart. They were dumping bacteria and toxins off the shores of Winthrop and Quincy. Sewage overflowed regularly onto our beaches. Fish had tumors and other diseases. Suffice it to say, no one wanted to go anywhere near the water.” But following several federal lawsuits and billions of dollars of cleanup, Szaro calls the remediation of Boston Harbor “undoubtedly one of the greatest environmental success stories in the country.” And now, she adds, “we’re focusing our attention on more upstream areas, on the three major rivers that feed into the harbor.” The EPA first launched the Charles River water quality report card 25 years ago so citizens could track the cleanup progress. The agency began issuing grades to the Mystic River in 2007, and this year added the Neponset. Citizen scientists with local watershed continued on page 31





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AUGUST, 2021

Boston Rivers continued from page 29 groups collect data from the rivers and submit the results to the EPA, which calculates a grade based on a three-year rolling average of bacteria levels. “The report cards are really a tool to drive action on further cleanup,” Szaro says. “This is really important on the segments of the river where water quality improvements are needed, and especially in environmental justice neighborhoods that have been disproportionately impacted by pollution and don’t have the same resources as other more affluent communities [for cleanup efforts].” Last Month, Gov. Charlie Baker wrote to the EPA in support of listing the lower Neponset River as a federal superfund site. This part of the river, which runs through Milton, Hyde Park, Dorchester and Mattapan, has a long history of industrial pollution, including PCBs. (Whether the Neponset gets listed is technically unrelated to the water quality report cards, which measure E. coli, not toxins in the sediment.) Szaro of the EPA, who grew up near Hyde Park, says she remembers being told as a child to stay away from the Neponset River because it was so dirty — she also recalls many floating objects in the

AUGUST, 2021

An MWRA wet weather sewage discharge outfall warning on the Charles River by the outlet of Boston's Muddy River. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR) water and a noxious smell emanating from it. She says the regional office is advocating for superfund site designation with EPA headquarters. She adds that she hopes all three major rivers in the Boston area will be places where people “can enjoy the natural beauty, take part in nature, recreate and just get a break from daily life by enjoying the scenery.” Written by Miriam Wasser and Jesse Costa (the photographer). Reprinted with permission from continued on page 33 WBUR.



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Boston Rivers continued from page 31 2020 Charles River Grades:

Upper Watershed (Hopkinton to Medfield): 85%, B+ Upper Middle Watershed (Sherborn to Dedham): 94%, A Lower Middle Watershed (Newton to Waltham): 89%, ALower Basin (Watertown to Boston): 71%, BStop River (Medfield): 87%, AMuddy River (Boston): 43%, D2020 Mystic River Grades Upper Mystic Lake: 93.21%, A Mystic River: 81.85%, B+ Meetinghouse Brook: 70%, C+ Malden River: 59.6%, CAberjona River: 58.78%, CLittle River: 51.02%, D+ Mill Brook: 48.57%, D Alewife Brook: 46.46%, D Winns Brook, 45.71%, D Island End River: 96.88%, A+ Chelsea River: 90.91%, A Mystic River: 79.81%, B Belle Isle Inlet: 78.08%, B Mill Creek, 32.86%, F



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2020 Neponset River Grades Turner Pond: 98.6%, A+ Crack Rock Pond: 97.3%, A+ Ganawatte Farm Pond: 96.8%, A+ Willet Pond: 96.1%, A+ Massapoag Brook: 89.7%, AMill Brook: 89.5%, AEast Branch: 86.7%, ABeaver Brook: 86.3%, ASteep Hill Brook: 86.2%, ASpring Brook: 81.8%, B+ Mother Brook: 79.8%, B Upper Neponset River: 76.8%, B Mine Brook: 76.0% Ponkapoag Brook: 75.7%, B Lower Neponset River: 74.4%, BBeaver Meadow Brook: 71.8%, BPecunit Brook: 70.6%, BHawes Brook: 69.3%, C+ Traphole Brook: 63.0%, C Pine Tree Brook: 62.1%, C Pequit Brook: 58.4%, CGermany Brook: 50.1%, D+ Purgatory Brook: 45%, DUnquity Brook: 31.4%, F Meadow Brook: 24.1%, F

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with UCANE’s Officers and Board Members Can you give us some information on your background and tell us how you got started in the construction equipment business? I live in Carver MA with my wife Susan of over 30 years, and we have two daughters, Emily (26), engaged and lives with her fiancé in Stamford CT and works in marketing/ advertising, and Abbie (24), who’s in graduate school to become a Genetic Counselor, living in Boston. I’m a life-long boater, enjoy four-wheeling, snowmobiling, working in my carpentry shop, and spending time with my family. I grew up loving heavy equipment and the construction industry since I was a kid. I lived on the Cape and when I was about five, my mom used to take me to the Eastham dump where Charlie Escobar ran the loader and I got to help “operate” the machine. I was hooked! During high school, I worked for Crosby Landscaping in Brewster and ran an old MF tractor and a Case 580C. I then served in the Army and Army National Guard for nine years as a heavy equipment operator. I was trained to run everything from graders and loaders, to sling loading dozers beneath Chinook helicopters while with the 101st Airborne, to hauling scrapers across the desert in Saudi Arabia in the scorching heat behind AM General M920 tractor trailers during Desert Shield/Storm. When I got out of the service and during college, I got my CDL and hoisting licenses and worked for Carrier Construction as an operator. I then left the industry for about 10 years to develop my career in business. I joined Enterprise Rent-A-Car in 1992, and was fortunate to have had the opportunity to help build Enterprise’s business, opening and overseeing numerous AUGUST, 2021

UCANE Board Member Erik Sveden C. N. Wood Company, Inc. locations around the Boston area throughout the 90s. But my passion for heavy equipment and the construction industry never faded, and I landed with Southworth Milton in 2001. I started in sales, then managed their rental alliance business, launched and ran the Challenger compact tractor business, then moved my family to Central NY to start and run the Agricultural business. Six years later, I was asked to move back to MA to launch and run their Vocational Truck business, which I did until CAT exited their on-highway venture in 2016. I then oversaw the large/key account sales force for MA/ RI until leaving and joining C. N. Wood Company, Inc.. I started with C. N. Wood as Director of Sales just over seven months ago, after nearly 20 years with Milton CAT. C. N. Wood is an outstanding organization, our team is top notch, and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve enjoyed every challenge and opportunity over the past 20+ years, and I look forward to working with the C. N. Wood team for many years to come! continued on page 37



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Under the Hard Hat continued from page 35 Here we are midway through 2021 and there are still lingering impacts from the pandemic to the construction equipment business. What are the current problems that you see in your business and what advice would you give contractors to manage these impacts in the months ahead? As a supplier, the greatest challenge we are all faced with right now is being able to provide the products our customer’s need, when they need them. Supply chain challenges are like nothing most of us have ever seen before, with costs at all-time highs. Planning is critical. If there’s a job on the horizon, dial in your suppliers as soon as possible so that we understand your needs, can forecast, and get orders placed well in advance, and can help get you what you need as close to when you need it as possible. If you can, being flexible with specific specifications and attachment requirements will help with lead times. That said, despite our best efforts, supply chain delays, surcharges, and related challenges appear to be with us for a while, so please try to be patient. We share your frustrations and we’re all in this together. continued on page 39


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Under the Hard Hat continued from page 37 There has been lots of talk in Washington about a possible substantial infrastructure bill. Is the construction equipment industry positioned to support what could be an increased demand for excavators, loaders, heavy trucks, etc.? It depends on how fast the demand ramps up. Machines are coming in, just slower than in the past, and some models are more readily available than others. Attachment availability has been particularly challenging. As I previously mentioned, supply chain challenges will likely be with us for a while, but at this point, it’s unclear just how long. Realistically, it appears there will be few changes until at least early 2022. Why did you decide to volunteer to serve on the UCANE Board of Directors? I’ve always thought that being involved with our industry’s organizations was important. As a supplier, we need to learn

“Supply chain challenges are like nothing most of us have ever seen before, with costs at all-time highs. Planning is critical.” about and understand what’s important to the industries we serve, and the best way to do that is to get to know the people that take the time and care enough to get involved. Prior to joining C. N. Wood, I didn’t think I understood the utility contracting industry as well as I needed to, I wanted to learn more. So I got involved, I got my company involved, and it was an honor when I was offered the opportunity to serve on the Board. It was an even a greater honor when I was voted in for a second year after joining C. N. Wood. What would you like our membership to know about being a UCANE Board Member? Being a UCANE board member provides the opportunity to collaborate with some of the most knowledgeable and talented people in our industry. It’s also an opportunity to give back, to listen, to learn, and to help our Association and its members solve the problems that are most important to us. n

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Update: Current Construction Insurance Landscape

As we quickly progress through 2021, earlier indications of the construction insurance market tightening have proven to be a reality. Tightening of carrier appetites, reluctance to offer flat renewal extensions (predominately related to builders’ risk), and consistent rate increases are just some of the factors burdening the end using product consumer.


riving factors within the construction insurance industry include, but are not limited to an influx of large losses, pandemic uncertainties, and higher material costs. The line of coverage across all industries that has seen the most volatility is excess and umbrella, which have seen upwards of 50% to 100% increases. This has been a product of underlying losses, mainly relating to auto and increased carrier reinsurance costs. This line is not only experiencing significant price increases but also a major pull back of limits and attachment points. For instance, at the expiration of a policy, a carrier whom was previously offering an excess limit of $10 million may only offer $5 million or less, requiring an additional layer to be placed elsewhere. This certainly poses a concern from not only a pricing standpoint but also in the unfortunate case of a large excess claim, a consumer may be faced with multiple carriers handling that single incident. Rates for General Liability have recently shown higher than average increases, as well. This is driven by the increase cost of materials and labor shortages in the event of third-party property damage. These two factors are also very apparent on the replacement cost for Builders Risk losses, resulting in policies to be re-underwritten at the time of renewal. During the pandemic many construction firms reduced premium driving exposures (sales, payroll, vehicles etc.) as a result of shutdowns and labor shortages. Because of this, many carriers were forced to AUGUST, 2021

increase premium rates to aid in maintaining loss fund reserves on unknown claims in the past and future. With the recent focus from Washington around PFAS (polyfluoroalkyl substances) it is likely that environmental (pollution) coverage will start to get a much closer look from underwriters on both a pricing and coverage limitation basis, as well. Overall, these results should not come as a surprise. Over the past 20 months the everyday consumer, whether it be an individual or business, are experiencing monetary challenges as it relates to their everyday product consumption, unfortunately the insurance market is no exception to this trend.

To combat this burden to the best of our abilities, it is more important now than ever before that insurance agents and brokers be extremely thorough and highlight all possible risk positives when presenting a construction firm to their carrier partners. n




WATER IS ESSENTIAL! The Massachusetts Water Resources conducted by the American Water Works Authority has begun mailing its Annual Association. “In just a few years, our waMassachusetts Water Resources Authority And Your Local Water Department Water Quality Report to every household ter treatment has been upgraded from in its service area. chlorine with its taste and odor issues, to “This report brings you the results of ozone and ultraviolet light, which resulted our annual water quality testing. While in better tasting, safer water,” said Laskey. The report is distributed to over 2020 was a year filled with uncertainty, one thing remained constant: the qual- 850,000 homes in the MWRA service ity of your drinking water was excellent,” area as required under the federal Safe said Fred Laskey, MWRA’s Executive Di- Drinking Water Act. Community-specific rector. “MWRA takes hundreds of thou- inserts also provide information about municipal water systems in the MWRA Go For for Further Information sands of tests each Where yearToand 2020, Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) area. 617-242-5323 we again met everyDepartment federal and state service of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) 617-626-1250 drinking water standard.” Test Dept. results for including a Spanish lanMassachusetts of Public Health (DPH)The reports, 617-624-6000 Massachusetts Dept. of Environmental Protection 617-292-5500 PFAS, the ‘forever chemicals’ that have guage version, are also available on-line US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) 800-232-4636 recently been in the news, were also andLabsa larger-print version is available List of State Certified Waterwell Quality Testing 617-242-5323 Source Water Assessment and Protection Reports 617-242-5323 upon request. below the state’s standards. Information on Water Conservation 617-242-SAVE MWRA also wants its customers to For more information, please visit Public Meetings know that their waterMWRA was again named MWRA’s website at or Board of Directors 617-788-1117  ‘Best of  the Best’ at MWRA a national taste test call 617-242-5323. Advisory Board 617-788-2050           


Water Supply Citizens Advisory Committee


For A Larger Print Version, Call 617-242-5323. AUGUST, 2021


This report is required under the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act. MWRA PWS ID# 6000000



Dear Customer, This report brings you the results of our annual water quality testing. While 2020 was a year filled with uncertainty, one thing remained constant: the quality of your drinking water was excellent. MWRA takes hundreds of thousands of tests each year, and for 2020, we again met every federal and state drinking water standard.

MWRA BOARD OF DIRECTORS Kathleen A. Theoharides, Chair John J. Carroll, Vice Chair Andrew M. Pappastergion, Secretary Christopher Cook Paul E. Flanagan

As providers of essential services, the women and men of MWRA have been on the job every day during the pandemic to make sure that the customers in our service area received uninterrupted delivery of safe drinking water. Our reservoirs have ample supplies to meet the demands of our service area. However, water is the most precious resource and we encourage everyone to save water wherever possible. You can find tips on how to conserve water on our website at System-wide, we were again below the Lead Action Level. Lead continues to be a priority for us and our member communities. To date, 11 communities have utilized over $17 million through our zero-interest loans to remove lead service lines. Please read your community’s letter on page 7 for more information on your local water system. at PFAS, or ‘forever chemicals’ have been in the news a lot lately. As expected, given our well-protected sources, our test results easily meet the newly issued Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection standards. No changes in our treatment are needed, and we continue to monitor this important issue.

Joseph C. Foti Brian Peña Henry F. Vitale

John J. Walsh

I hope you will take a few moments to read this report. We have great confidence in the water we deliver to your homes and businesses and we want you to as well. Please contact us if you have any questions or comments about your water quality, or any of MWRA's programs.

Jennifer L. Wolowicz


Patrick Walsh

Frederick A. Laskey Executive Director For more information on MWRA and its Board of Directors, visit

continued on page 37

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continued on page 45 AUGUST, 2021




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Safe Drinking Water Is Essential Safe drinking water is essential - to life, health, and safety. Healthcare, fire services and other emergency responders rely on safe, available water. In 2020, MWRA worked with the 53 communities receiving our drinking water to supply an average of 200 million gallons of water each day to home, business, school and hospital taps. Essential Information About Your Water This 2020 Water Quality Report will provide you with essential information on your drinking water-how we test, treat, and ensure the safety of your water-every day, without interruption. MWRA ensures the quality of your water through a comprehensive protection, treatment, distribution and system-wide evaluation process that ensures the safety of the water you receive. MWRA’s Water Sources MWRA’s efforts to protect your drinking water start 65 miles west of Boston, at the Quabbin Reservoir, and the Wachusett Reservoir, 35 miles west of Boston. The combined supply of these two reservoirs provided an average of 200 million gallons of high quality water every day to our consumers in 2020. The Ware River also provides additional water when needed. The Quabbin and Wachusett watersheds —the areas that drain water into the reservoirs—are naturally protected. Over

85% of the watersheds are covered in forests and wetlands, which help filter the rain and snow as they enter the streams that flow to the reservoirs. This water comes in contact with soil, rock, plants, and other material as it follows its natural path to the reservoirs. While this process helps to clean the water, it can also dissolve and carry very small amounts of material into the reservoir. Minerals from soil and rock do not typically cause problems in the water. Water can also transport contaminants, including bacteria, viruses or other potential pathogens, from human and animal activity. Test results show few contaminants are found in the reservoir water. The few that are detected are in very small amounts that are well below EPA’s standards. Water Source Protection A Source Water Assessment Program report was developed by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), for the Quabbin and Wachusett Reservoirs. The DEP report commends the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), and MWRA for our source water protection plans, and states that our “watershed protection programs are very successful and greatly reduce the actual risk of contamination.” MWRA and DCR follow the report recommendations to maintain the pristine watershed areas. Testing from Forest to Faucet MWRA and your community work together to test your drinking water frequently, from the water’s source in the Quabbin Reservoir to your kitchen or workplace tap.

MWRA laboratories conduct hundreds of thousands of tests every year for 120 potential contaminants. You can learn more about our testing for potential waterborne contaminants on our website at The 2020 water quality tests are shown below. These results confirm the quality and safety of the water delivered each day to your community, and it tastes great right from the start. Turbidity (or cloudiness of the water), for example, is one measure of overall water quality. All water must be below 5 NTU (Nephelometric Turbidity Units) and water can only be above 1 NTU if it does not interfere with effective disinfection. In 2020, typical levels in the Wachusett Reservoir were 0.33 NTU, with the highest level of turbidity at 0.67 NTU, well below the standard. MWRA also tests reservoir water for pathogens such as fecal coliform bacteria, and the parasites Cryptosporidium and Giardia, that can enter the water from animal or human waste. All test results in 2020 were well within state and federal testing and treatment standards. For more information, please visit

continued on page 47



(MCL) Highest Level Allowed

Barium Monochloramine Fluoride Nitrate^ Total Trihalomethanes Haloacetic Acids-5

ppm ppm ppm ppm ppb ppb

2 4-MRDL 4 10 80 60

(We Found) Detected Level-Average

0.009 2.01 0.72 0.095 15.4 15.7

Range Of Detections

(MCLG) Ideal Goal

0.009-0.01 2 0.05-3.7 4-MRDLG 0.10-0.82 4 0.04-0.095 10 4.9-23.1 NS ND-17.4 NS


No No No No No No

How It Gets In The Water

Common mineral in nature Water disinfectant Additive for dental health Atmospheric deposition Byproduct of water disinfection Byproduct of water disinfection

KEY: MCLMaximum Contaminant Level. The highest level of a contaminant allowed in water. MCLs are set as close to the MCLGs as feasible using the best available technology. MCLG=Maximum Contaminant Level Goal. The level of contaminant in drinking water below which there is no known or expected risk to health. MCLGs allow for a margin of safety. MRDL=Maximum Residual Disinfectant Level. The highest level of a disinfectant allowed in drinking water. There is convincing evidence that addition of a disinfectant is necessary for control of microbial contaminants. MRDLG=Maximum Residual Disinfectant Level Goal. The level of a drinking water disinfectant below which there is no known or expected health risk. MRDLGs do not reflect the benefits of the use of disinfectants to control microbial contamination. ppm=parts per million ppb=parts per billion NS=no standard ND=non-detect ^=As required by DEP, the maximum result is reported for nitrate, not the average.


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MWRA continued from page 45


Essential Water System Protection MWRA and DCR protect the water you drink by testing, treating and protecting water quality. From the streams in the watershed, through hundreds of miles of MWRA and thousands of miles of local pipes all the way to your home. MWRA works with the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) to protect 150,000 acres of permanently protected forested land and wetlands in the watershed. DCR maintains a nationally recognized protection program that includes extensive water quality testing, stormwater controls, water quality maintenance and development regulations. MWRA maintains a state of the art water monitoring system that operates continuously —24 hours a day, 7 days a week—before and after treatment. This system helps us confirm the water is free of contaminants, and allows MWRA to rapidly respond to any changes in water quality.

great. Part of the reason that the water tastes so good is MWRA’s advanced water treatment at the John J. Carroll Water Treatment Plant in Marlborough. First, your water is treated with ozone —produced by pure oxygen. Ozone disinfects the water, killing bacteria, viruses and other organisms. It also improves water clarity and makes the water taste better. Next we use ultraviolet light (UV) disinfection, further improving the quality of the water. UV light is essentially a more powerful form of the natural disinfection from sunlight, and further ensures that any pathogens in the water from our reservoirs are rendered harmless.

MWRA’s modern treatment processes make sure your water is safe, fresh, and tastes FACTS ABOUT SODIUM Sodium in water contributes only a small fraction of a person’s overall sodium intake (less than 5%). MWRA tests for sodium monthly and the highest level found was 42.7 mg/L (about 10 mg per 8 oz. glass). This level would be considered Very Low Sodium by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

MWRA‘s MWRA‘s John John J. J. Carroll Carroll Water Water Treatment Treatment Plant Plant

In addition, fluoride is added to promote dental health, and the water chemistry is adjusted to reduce corrosion of home plumbing. Last, we add monochloramine (combining chlorine and ammonia), a mild and long-lasting disinfectant to provide continuing protection of the water as it travels through miles of pipelines to your home. Ensuring System Redundancy for Continuing Service Our goal is to provide a continuous supply of safe, clean water to every person and

organization in the MWRA service area. Redundant pipelines and tunnels allow inspection and maintenance of key facilities while ensuring uninterrupted service. Construction of a second pipeline to provide more reliable service to communities to the south is ongoing. Construction is now underway to repair and improve the Weston Aqueduct Supply Main 3 in Weston, Waltham, Belmont, Arlington and Medford. And planning and environmental review for two new tunnels north and south of Boston that will provide redundancy for the entire region is now well underway. Distribution System—Pipeline Rehabilitation MWRA continues to rehabilitate and replace pipelines throughout the distribution system to improve both reliability and water quality. MWRA also provides zero -interest loans to customer communities for local pipeline projects. In 2020, $36 million was loaned to communities to fund 24 community projects for the replacement or rehabilitation of older unlined pipes or replacement of lead service lines.

continued on page 49


MWRA’s emergency planning and commitment to providing reliable service allowed us to keep the water and sewer systems working continuously over the past year. We activated our long-standing pandemic response plan, protected our staff with changed work rules and social distancing, and met all drinking water testing and safety requirements. 3

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MWRA continued from page 47



Essential Facts-Lead In Drinking Water Why is lead in drinking water important? Lead affects young children, and may cause damage to the brain, slow growth and development, and cause learning and behavior problems. Preventing lead exposure is particularly important if a pregnant woman or child lives in your home or apartment. Lead can also impact the health of your entire family. While lead poisoning frequently comes from exposure to lead paint dust or chips, lead in drinking water can also contribute to chronic, total lead exposure. Lead in your home plumbing or a lead service line can contribute to elevated lead levels in the water you drink. To lower your family’s exposure to lead in drinking water, review the information on this page. Important Lead Information From EPA If present, elevated levels of lead can cause serious health problems, especially for pregnant women and young children. Lead in Residential water service line connects your house to the water main which runs under your street. Property Line

LEAD AND COPPER RESULTS-2020 Lead (ppb) Copper (ppb)

90% Value 6.47 105

program helps limit the amount of lead in your water. In 1996, MWRA began adding sodium carbonate and carbon dioxide to adjust the water’s pH and buffering capacity. This treatment makes the water less corrosive and reduces leaching of lead into drinking water. Lead levels found in sample tests of tap water have dropped by about 90% since this treatment change. Learn more about lead in drinking water at

How Lead Can Enter Your Water

MWRA Meets Lead Standard In 2020

MWRA water is lead-free when it leaves our reservoirs, and MWRA and local pipes that carry the water to your community are made mostly of iron and steel, and don’t add lead to the water. Lead can enter your tap water through pipes in your home, your service line (the line that connects your home to the water main) if it is made of lead, lead solder used in plumbing, or from some brass fixtures.

Under EPA rules, MWRA and your local water department must test tap water each year in a sample of homes likely to have high lead levels—those with lead solder or lead service lines. The EPA rule requires that 9 out of 10, or 90% of the sampled homes must have lead levels below the Action Level of 15 ppb in their drinking water.

Corrosion or wearing away of lead-based materials can add lead to tap water, especially if water sits for a long time in the pipes before it is used. MWRA’s corrosion control

Target Action Level 15 ppb 1300 ppb

Ideal Goal (MCLG) 0 1300

#Homes Above AL/ #Homes Tested 16/450 0/450

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70 60



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Remove lead service lines to your home

drinking water comes primarily from materials and components associated with service lines and home plumbing. MWRA is responsible for providing high quality drinking water, but cannot control the variety of materials used in plumbing components. If your water has been sitting for several hours, you can minimize the potential for lead exposure by flushing your tap for 30 seconds to 2 minutes before using water for drinking or cooking. If you are concerned about lead in your water, you may wish to have your water tested. Information on lead in drinking water, testing methods, and steps you can take to minimize exposure is available from the Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1-800-425-4791 or

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6 2015

7 7 2016









Run your drinking water before using Use a filter certified to remove lead

All sampling rounds over the past 17 years have been below the EPA Action Level. Of the 3,482 samples taken in the last 7 years, 96.7% were below the Action Level. Results for the 450 samples taken in September 2020 are shown in the table. Nine out of ten homes were below 6.5 ppb-well below the Action Level of 15 ppb. Three communities—Boston, Medford and Melrose—were above the Lead Action Level in 2020. Your community letter on page 7 will provide you with local results and more information. WHAT IS AN ACTION LEVEL? An Action Level is the amount of lead that requires action to reduce exposure. If your home or school’s drinking water sample is above the Lead Action Level, additional steps to reduce the level of lead may be required. If more than 10% of your community’s samples were over the Lead Action Level (15 ppb), your local water department is taking action to address the problem. See page 7.

continued on page 50



MWRA continued from page 49



Ways To Reduce Lead In Your Water

REDUCE EXPOSURE TO LEAD IN YOUR HOME Lead can enter your drinking water through pipes in your home, or your lead service line (that connects your home to the water main). Find out how to identify and remove a lead service line if your home has one. Contact your local water department about removal options.

Do I Have a Lead Service Line? A service line connects your building’s plumbing to the water main in your street. In some older buildings, the service line is made of lead and can add significant amounts of lead to your drinking water. Replacing the lead service line can eliminate a major source of lead in your drinking water. Contact your local water department to find out if you have a lead service line. You can also scratch the pipe entering your home near your water meter with a key. Lead pipes will show a dull grey or silver color, while copper pipes will not. For more information go to MWRA Funding to Replace Lead Service Lines MWRA and its Advisory Board offer zero -interest loans to customer communities for full lead service line replacement projects. Each MWRA community can develop its own local plan, and many communities have already taken steps to remove lead service lines. To find out more, contact your local water department.

Free MWRA Testing for Schools and Child Care Facilities Children consume much of their drinking water at school and daycare. The plumbing in some schools and child care facilities can contain lead, and contribute to total lead exposure. MWRA, in collaboration with MassDEP, has provided no-cost lab analysis and technical assistance for schools and child care centers across all of MWRA’s water communities since 2016. Water samples are tested at our laboratory and the results are provided to the local school, health and water departments. Since the start of this program in 2016, MWRA has completed over 38,000 tests from 506 schools across 44 communities. Results are available at: (search for “lead in schools”). Results may also be available from your local school department or water department.

How to Test Your Drinking Water Interested in testing your home drinking water for lead? Contact your local water department about testing for lead in your drinking water. Or, go to the list of certified laboratories and sampling instructions available on the lead testing page at You may also call MWRA at 617-242-5323 for more information.


You can identify lead service line by carefully scratching with a key. New copper service line.

Any time water has not been used for more than 6 hours, run any faucet used for drinking or cooking until after the water becomes cold.

Let the water run before using it: fresh water is better than stale. To save water, fill a pitcher with fresh water and place in the refrigerator for future use. Never use hot water from the faucet for drinking or cooking, especially when making baby formula or other food for infants or young children. Remove loose lead solder and debris. Every few months remove the aerator from each faucet in your home and flush the pipes for 3 to 5 minutes.

Be careful of places where you may find lead in or near your home. Paint, soil, dust and pottery may contain lead. Call the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) at 1-800-532-9571 or 1-800-424-LEAD for information on health and lead.

continued on page 51 50


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MWRA continued from page 50



Essential Information On Your Water Partners In Testing For Bacteria MWRA and local water departments test 300 to 500 water samples each week for total coliform bacteria. Total coliform bacteria can come from the intestines of warm-blooded animals, or can be found in soil, plants, or other places. Most of the time, they are not harmful. However, their presence could signal that harmful bacteria from fecal waste may be there as well. If total coliform is detected in more than 5% of samples in a month, the water system is required to investigate the possible source and fix any identified problems. If a water sample does test positive, we run more specific tests for E. coli, which is a bacteria found in human and animal fecal waste and may cause illness. If your community was required to do an investigation, or found E. coli, it will be in the letter from your community on page 7. Monitoring Water For PFAS PFAS compounds, used since the 1950s for everything from stain and water proofing to firefighting, continue to be an environmental concern. In 2020, the Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) published a drinking water standard for PFAS. Tests of MWRA water showed only trace amounts of these compounds, well below the new state maximum contaminant MWRA Wins the MassDEP Public Water Systems Award The Department of Environmental Protection awarded a Public Water System Award to MWRA in 2020, recognizing MWRA’s continued excellent level of performance and compliance with all drinking water standards. COMPLAINTS ARE ESSENTIAL TOO! MWRA takes customer concerns seriously. Every call is investigated. Most complaints are related to discolored water (usually related to local construction or hydrant use), or conditions in a building’s plumbing. If you have any questions or concerns, contact your local water department, or call MWRA at (617) 242-5323.

level (MCL) of 20 parts per trillion. See Important Research For New Regulations MWRA works with EPA and health research organizations to help define new national drinking water standards by collecting data on water contaminants that are not yet regulated. With our well-protected sources, very few of these potential contaminants are found in MWRA water. Information on this testing, as well as other water quality data, including information on PFAS, disinfection byproducts, Giardia and Cryptosporidium, and other contaminants can be found at Contaminants in Bottled Water and Tap Water Drinking water, including bottled water, may reasonably be expected to contain at least small amounts of some contaminants. The presence of contaminants does not necessarily indicate that water poses a health risk. More information about contaminants and potential health effects can be obtained by calling the EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline (1-800-426-4791) or MWRA. In order to ensure that tap water is safe to drink, the Massachusetts DEP and EPA prescribe regulations which limit the amount of certain contaminants in water provided by public water systems. U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) regulations establish limits for contaminants in bottled water, which must provide the same protection for public health. Important Health Information: Drinking Water and People with Weakened Immune Systems Some people may be more vulnerable to contaminants in drinking water than the general population. Immuno-compromised persons such as persons with cancer undergoing chemotherapy, persons who have undergone organ transplants, people with HIV/AIDS or other immune system disorders, some elderly, and infants, can be particularly at risk from infections. These people should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers. EPA/CDC guidelines on appropriate means to lessen the risk of infection by Cryptosporidium and other microbial contaminants are available from the EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline (1-800-426-4791).

CONSERVATION IS ESSENTIAL Some parts of the state are experiencing drought conditions. Although the Quabbin Reservoir is well within the “Normal” operating range for this time of year, MWRA urges its customers to conserve water wherever possible. Our website has many tips on how to save water both indoors and outdoors. Every drop counts!

CROSS CONNECTION INFORMATION A cross-connection is any temporary or permanent connection between a potable (drinking) water source and a non-potable source. Non-potable water or other sources can contaminate your drinking water if backflow occurs. Sources could include: • • • • •

Garden hoses Boilers Swimming pools Irrigation systems or wells Residential fire protection systems

Massachusetts DEP recommends the installation of backflow prevention devices for inside and outside hose connections to help protect the water in your home as well as the drinking water system in your town. For more information on cross connections, please call 617-242-5323 or visit


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Confined Spaces: Do Not Become Another Statistic Within the utility industry, workers frequently encounter confined spaces. A confined space is an area that is large enough for someone to enter, has a limited means of entry or exit, and is not designed for continuous occupancy. A confined space poses both physical and atmospheric hazards that must be addressed prior to entry. Despite the changes in time, availability of training, and new regulations, statistics, old or new, show we have not improved mitigating or eliminating, the risk of confined space injuries and fatalities.


confined space includes utility structures, pits, and vaults. Understanding if the area meets the definition of a confined space is just the beginning. Once it’s known to be a confined space, the next step is determining if it meets the requirements to classify it as a permit-required confined space. A permit-required confined space is a confined space that has one or more of the following characteristics: (1) contains or has a potential to contain a hazardous atmosphere, (2) contains a material that has the potential for engulfing an entrant, (3) has an internal configuration, such that an entrant could be trapped or asphyxiated by inwardly converging walls or by a floor that slopes downward and tapers to a smaller cross-section: or (4) contains any other recognized serious safety or health hazard. When a confined space is encountered, only properly trained employees can take part in the work. The confined space regulations define a few specific roles of a confined space team. The Entry Supervisor is the one that is responsible for determining if the conditions are acceptable for entry, for authorizing entry, for overseeing entry operations, and for terminating a permit when one is required. The Attendant is someone stationed outside of the confined space and assesses the status of the entrants. The Attencontinued on page 55 AUGUST, 2021



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Safety Corner continued from page 53 dant and Entry Supervisor can be the same person and is often the competent person. The Authorized Entrant is an employee authorized by the Entry Supervisor to enter the space and perform work. With each role comes specific duties that can only be fulfilled by someone meeting the requirements for that position. The Entry Supervisor must be familiar with and understand the hazards that may be faced during entry. When a permit is required, the Entry Supervisor verifies that the space is safe for entry with their signature. The permit can only be suspended and terminated by the Entry Supervisor. The Attendant must also be familiar with and understand the hazards that may be faced during

entry. They must be aware of any behavioral effects of atmospheric hazards on entrants. The Attendant controls access to the space, maintains a log of entrants, and records atmospheric readings of the work area. If rescue services are required, the Attendant makes that call, and if they can, they provide nonentry rescue services. The Attendant cannot perform any other duty that may interfere with their primary duty of the confined space Attendant and must stay positioned outside of the space, maintaining communication with the Entrants at all times. The Entrant is the employee that enters and performs work within the confined space. The Entrant typically wears the Four-Gas Meter and maintains communication with the Attendant throughout the work. The regulations provide an alternate entry of a permit-required confined space if the competent person can determine that all physical hazards in the space are eliminated or isolated through engineering controls. The competent person must be able to demonstrate that the atmosphere is safe for occupancy. A Four-Gas meter will test for oxygen content, flammable gases and vapors, and potential toxic air contaminants. Those other potential toxic air contaminants typically are hydrogen sulfide and carbon monoxide. A four-gas meter is a direct read instrument, which means the current measured levels can be seen in a digital readout on the instrument. The meter will also provide an audible, flashing, and vibrating alarm if levels are outside of the safe range for occupancy. The atmosphere within the space must be continually monitored and levels recorded by the Attendant. There are three types of confined space rescue: non-entry, entry by emergency services, and entry by trained employees. A nonentry rescue consists of a tripod with a hand winch setup over the entry to the area. The Entrant is required to wear a fall protection harness that is attached to the winch cable. When the Entrant is in the confined space, they must maintain tension on the winch cable. In the case of an emergency and the Entrant cannot safely exit continued on page 56

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Safety Corner continued from page 55 the space on their own, the Attendant would use the winch to get the Entrant out of the confined space safely and without putting themselves in harm’s way. In remote areas, emergency services may not be sufficient. Sometimes the response time to the work area is too long. In those cases, if the rescue plan relies on emergency services, they may need to be scheduled to be onsite and ready to perform the rescue prior to work starting. A confined space rescue typically involves a specialized team that may not be available for each town. Other towns may share the team. Some companies have created confined space rescue teams that train as a group for the specific, confined spaces they will encounter.

The one message that needs to be clear in an emergency is to fight the urge to jump in and rescue someone. An eye-opening statistic is that 60% of all confined space fatalities are would-be rescuers. Take the time to plan the work thoroughly. Ensure everything is in place, set up, and working as it should before entering any confined space. Do not take shortcuts and do not become another statistic. n


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Filling the Labor Pool — Post-Pandemic, Construction Industry Wants Workers to Jump In

The Brookings Institution estimates about 1.5 million people will leave their infrastructure jobs every year over the next decade.

Emerging from the coronavirus pandemic, contactors are struggling to fill crews. Construction employment dropped by 20,000 from April to May, the third decline in the previous four months. That's further challenged the industry, which for years has faced a stagnant labor pool.


resident Joe Biden is pushing two major bills to boost both infrastructure and the supply chain, but some in the industry believe these programs may increase workforce burdens. In a labor report, the Associated General Contractors (AGC) noted that BLS statistics put worker numbers at 225,000 below the pre-pandemic peak of February 2020. Nonresidential construction employment shrank by 21,800 in May and was 260,000 below the February 2020 level, reported AGC chief economist Ken Simonson. "A total of 642,000 former construction workers were unemployed in May, a sharp decline from May 2020 but the second-highest May level since 2014," he wrote.

AUGUST, 2021

The industry's unemployment rate in May was 6.7 percent, compared to 12.7 percent in May 2020. For total construction, hourly earnings in April averaged $32.59, 8 percent more than the average for the nonfarm private sector. But over the past two years this premium shrank by 2.2 percentage points from 10.2 percent in April 2019. This implies that “the financial attractiveness of construction may be diminishing as other sectors that are expanding faster raise pay to attract more workers,” said Simonson. The premium diminished the most for employees of heavy and civil engineering construction firms (minus 4.5 points, from 16 percent above the private-sector average in April 2019 to 11.5 percent in April 2021). continued on page 61




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Labor Pool continued from page 59 Citing BLS data, the AGC reported there were 357,000 job openings in construction, seasonally adjusted, at the end of April. Hires in April totaled 335,000 or 4.5 percent of the employment total for the month. “Apart from the pandemic-depressed 3.1 percent rate in 2020, the rate was the lowest for April in the 21-year history of the series,” said Simonson. The job openings rate (4.6 percent) was the second-highest total for any month since the series began in December 2000, he added.

Recruiting Headaches Recruiting construction workers can be more expensive than keeping them on the job. “Many young employees know little about the industry,” said Blair Chenault, CEO of construction software provider Flashtract. In a blog on his company’s website, Chenault wrote that long-term workers have been the backbone of the industry. “As these workers reach retirement age in droves, younger workers aren’t stepping in to fill the available positions. Younger workers believe the construction industry is unstable,” he said. Another big reason: The encouragement to seek higher education equals discouragement from manual jobs like construction. Plus, construction comes with safety hazards that make proper training a vital part of the industry, he wrote. “Training long-term employees is well worth the cost and time, but new employees can be unpredictable,” said Chenault. “Losing trained employees is expensive and leaves fellow workers carrying an extra burden on the jobsite.”

Presidential Pains The White House’s plan to alleviate supply-chain disruptions could create other burdens. While boosting labor numbers and training, the proposal would increase the cost of doing construction business, believes the AGC. Association officials want the Biden administration to address rising materials costs and growing labor shortages. Stephen E. Sandherr, the Association’s CEO, said Biden’s supply-chain program “would limit the ability of workers and employers to fill needed construction positions.”

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Labor Pool continued from page 61

Recruiting Tips

He believes that imposing mandated hiring percentages, inflexible labor agreements and artificially high pay rates will cut the number of firms and workers available for infrastructure and other construction programs. “The construction industry is experiencing widespread and growing problems with the cost and supply of materials,” said Sandherr. “These challenges will make it more costly and difficult to achieve the administration’s goals for infrastructure, renewable energy and affordable housing.”

Solutions to Stay Afloat Baywork, a San Francisco area coalition of water agencies, has created apprenticeship programs to get students that experience while they’re in school, reported Hechinger. “Utility managers believe this approach will solve some staffing problems.”

Chenault of Flashtract warns that all industries will vie for the attention of transitioning job seekers. Companies in the construction industry will need new techniques for recruiting and retaining. Here are his tips: •

Expand recruitment tactics and meet potential employees where their job search exists.

“As people return to the job market, they may not even consider construction without prompting,” he wrote. “Job seekers comparing industries will be eager to learn about income opportunities, as well as benefits and advancement opportunities.” Area Boston • Improve Locations

conditions for current employees, continued on page 64

2   Dexter Street Everett, MA 02149 Boston Area Boston Area Locations Locations 431 Second Street Everett, MA 02149 2     Dexter Street 2     Dexter Street   Everett, MA 02149 Everett, MA   02149

Some agencies in the area have agreed to hold community college classes at their plants. It cuts down on students’ commute times and provides practical experience.

431 Second Street 431 Second Street Everett, MA 02149 Everett, MA 02149 BOSTON AREA LOCATIONS  

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Oakland’s Dublin San Ramon Services District is offering plant tours and job fairs to boost interest in water jobs. “We have to market these jobs and make sure high-school kids who are smart consider it,” said Levi Fuller, district wastewater operations superintendent. Minichiello Bros./Scrap-It, Inc., Gender and diversity, as Minichiello Bros./Scrap-It, Inc. well, plague construction sectors. Serves over 2500 customers a week and is one of New England’s largest Serves over 2500 customers a week and is one New England's largest buyers, buyers, sellers, and processors of scrap metal. Forour overgoal 60 years goal Brookings found that moresellers than and processors of scrap metal. For over 60 years has our remained remained the same - to in provide the best along prices in thetop industry along with the same - tohas provide the best prices the industry with notch 82 percent of power plant workers top notch customer service! Call Fred Rogers at 617-595-5505 are white. And, 82 percent ofcustomer infra- service! Call Fred Rogers at 617-595-5505 Minichiello Bros./Scrap-It, Inc., structure workers are men.

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“A more diverse workforce Serves over 2500 customers a week and is one New England's largest buyers, and processors of scrap metal. For overa60week years ourisgoal Serves over 2500 customers and onehas Newremained England's largest buyers would help fill jobs, but itsellers will take the same the best in theof industry along with notch sellers and prices processors scrap metal. Fortop over 60 years our goal has remain broader steps to complete the slew- to provide Callsame Fred -Rogers at 617-595-5505 to provide the best prices in the industry along with top notch of infrastructure projects customer proposedservice! the customer service! Call Fred Rogers at 617-595-5505 by the administration,” wrote Hech   inger. A “few relatively easy fixes” the article lists include allowing Pell grants to pay for short-term college vocational programs. AUGUST, 2021

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Labor Pool continued from page 63 the window into what the work experience is like within a construction company. “Now is the time to reduce cumbersome job tasks and eliminate slow payment issues that have been known to plague the industry,” said Chenault. •

Create open streams of communication with employees to ensure you’re doing everything you can to make your employees feel connected and appreciated.

“Happy employees serve as brand ambassadors to job seekers around them, he wrote. •

Recognize difficulties for employees returning to the job market who may be working through a tough time financially as they emerge from the pandemic.

“Employers will face a different situation when it comes to reaching payment agreements for new employees,” said Chenault. “Take time to reexamine your company budget to allocate funds to attracting and retaining long-term employees to the company.”

Bioretention Soil? Who makes that? Stabilized stonedust? Who makes that? CU-Structural soil? Who makes that?

Green roof soil? Who makes that? Reinforced soil? Who makes that?

Written by Lucy Perry. Reprinted with permission from Construction Equipment Guide (CEG). n

Dave Pateuk / Owner Email: Website:

• • • •


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Move Your BIZ to a Higher Level

Most construction business owners start out with a vision of business that works the way they want it to work. Their vision is an in-control organized and systemized company that continually grows and makes a nice bottom-line profit. But along the path, rather than grow and profit, their path upwards begins to start moving in the wrong direction. Typical downward spiral of a business. 1. Too much work for owner to do alone 2. Hire cheap and untrained help 3. Work gets out of control & projects late 4. Customers get unhappy 5. Jobs going over-budget and not making much money 6. Can’t afford to hire better people 7. No time to track job cost or numbers 8. No time for sales or marketing 9. Owner spends time putting out fires and fixing problems 10. No referrals or repeat customers 11. Have to sell lower prices to win any work

AUGUST, 2021

12. Owner wants to improve & change but doesn’t 13. Owner repeatedly complains about everything 14. Can’t make enough profit to grow or see any hope of improvement 15. Owner seeks help and says: “Help! What should I do to move my business to the next level?” The business owner wants to move to the next level but has too many issues. Ask yourself if you have an of these problems: •

Doing too much of the important work yourself.

Working way too hard for the money you make.

Your business is not organized & systemized.

You have to make all the decisions for everyone. continued on page 67



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AUGUST, 2021

Move Your Biz continued from page 65 •

You can’t find any accountable or responsible help. • You can’t find a way to make more profit. • You want to stop selling low prices to win work. • Your crew doesn’t get enough work completed unless you’re there. • He needs to find better customers who don’t shop bids. • You want to get off the ‘work-work-work’ treadmill • You don’t have any free time. • You’re stuck and want to take your business to the next level but don’t know where to start. Is your business growing and giving you the results you wanted when you first started your entrepreneurial journey? Or are you stuck in the muck and can’t seem to get moving? As small companies begin to grow, they get bogged down, hit challenges, and find roadblocks that hold them back. These include lack of time, energy, money, people, and customers. Many business owners stay paralyzed forever and can’t let go or grow. They feel they have to make every decision and hold tight to the controls. In order to get your construction business to grow and profit, most companies follow this step-bystep transition to become a ‘Best In Class Business!’

7 Steps To Move Your Construction Business To The Next Level Step 1 - EMPLOYEE

Before small business owners start their companies, they’re usually very competent employees, trade workers, superintendents, foremen, project managers, or estimators doing a great job for their boss. They’re responsible and accountable, competent, work hard, and dream about the day they can start their own business. Then it finally happens. They get bit by the entrepreneurial bug and make a decision to go into business for themselves. They go home one day and announce to their family and friends that they have quit their job and are going to start their own business. After the initial shock, family members ask where they’ll find the money to get started, attract paying customers, hire trustworthy employees, and—of course—pay the bills. Without fear, the new entrepreneur says: “Don’t worry, I’ll figure it out!” Entrepreneurs are never content working for others. They want to go out and make things happen and do things their way. They feel boxed in doing what their boss wants and following company rules and rituals. They need to go it alone, escape, and make their own decisions about how they want to do business, who they should hire, how many hours they should work, which customers they should do business with, and how much money they can make. So, they eventually start their own Water Works Specialist company, grow, make a profit, and John Hoadley and Sons Inc. Water Works Specialist Tel:781-878-8098 Fax:781-878-5298 seek better way to build a future. Water Worksa Specialist But most stuck along the way. Tel:781-878-8098get Fax:781-878-5298 Tel: 781-878-8098 Fax: 781-878-5298

John Hoadley and Sons Inc. John Hoadley and Sons Inc.

Step 2 - SELF “Our Products the Most Trusted NamesNames in theinIndustry” “OurIndustry” Products Are the Most Trusted Names in the Industry” “OurAre Products Are the Most Trusted the

EMPLOYED � U.S. Pipe ● Cultec Chambers SMALL BIZ U.S. Pipe ● Cultec Chambers � Mueller Fire Hydrants ● National Pipe & Plastics • U.S. Pipe • Cultec Chambers OWNER Mueller Tapping Sleeves & Valves ● ADS Pipe & Chambers Mueller Fire Pipe & Plastics • Hydrants Mueller Fire Hydrants ● National • National Pipe�� &Smith Plastics Blair Clamps & Couplings ●After General Foundry Castings an employee gets the Mueller Tapping Sleeves & Valves ● Valves ADS Pipe Chambers • Mueller Tapping Sleeves & • &ADS Pipe & Chambers Mechanical Services bug to start their own business, � Tapping Sleeves & Gates Installed / Cut • Clamps Smith & Blair Clamps & Couplings • General Foundry Castings Smith Blair Couplings ● General Foundry Castings � Line Stop / EZthey Valves move to Step 2 as a selfMechanical Services � Cutting of Chilled Water Lines & Steam Lines business owner. employed small Mechanical Services � Pressure Testing & Disinfection of New Mains � Tapping Sleeves & Gates Installed / Cut Here, as the supervisor, they are � Installation & Testing of Backflow Preventers 24 Hours • Tapping Sleeves & Gates Installed / Cut Sales& Service 100% in charge of every decision, � Large Diameter Hydraulic Pipe Cutting � Line Stop EZ Valves Serving all of • Line Stop / EZ/ Valves � Hydrant Installation & Repair England contract, customerNewconversation, � Cutting of Chilled WaterLines Lines&&Steam SteamLines Lines � Electronic Leak Detection • Cutting of Chilled Water price, purchase, delivery, and what “Water-Sewer-Drain Supplies at a Competitive Price” • Pressure Testing &&Disinfection � Pressure Testing DisinfectionofofNew NewMains Mains work gets done when. They are • Installation && Testing ofof Backflow � Installation Testing BackflowPreventers Preventers 24 24Hours Hours672 Union Street Rockland, MA 02370 ly in control of every moving part of • Large Diameter Hydraulic Pipe Cutting Sales& Service Sales & Service � Large Diameter Hydraulic Pipe Cutting their business. The owner is out on • Hydrant Installation & Repair Serving ofof Servingallall the jobsites every day performing � Hydrant Leak Installation & Repair New • Electronic Detection NewEngland England lots of the actual work himself with � Electronic Leak Detection the help of a few workers. He is the “Water-Sewer-Drain Supplies at Supplies a Competitive Price” Price” “Water-Sewer-Drain at a Competitive boss, supervisor, project manager, bookkeeper, estimator, customer relations manager, and calls all the 672 Union Street MA Rockland, 672 Union Street Rockland, 02370MA 02370 continued on page 68 � � � �

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Move Your Biz continued from page 67 shots. He is the business. Without him, there is no business and no company. Some business owners choose to remain at Level 2 as self-employed sole-practitioners forever, and that’s OK. Most grow a little to two men and one truck, while some grow to one foreman with two or three crews. Eventually they have to make a decision: grow or stay put as a small business owner. Or move to the next level and really build a business that works instead of them doing most of the work.

Step 3 - STUCK SMALL BIZ - YOU ARE THE BIZ! As the small business owner gathers a few good customers and begins to do excellent work, they start getting referrals. Therefore, the company continues to grow. Therefore, he decides to rent a small shop or office near his house. He hires a foremen or supervisor and some more field workers. Then he hires a part-time office assistant or bookkeeper to help him with the paperwork and pay the bills. At this point he is still the estimator, salesman, project manager, and general field superintendent with everyone reporting to him. As the hands-on supervisor and manager, he makes most every decision, estimates, awards subcontracts, orders all the materials, signs every check,


and still oversees each little item, transaction, customer, contact, purchase, proposal, invoice, subcontractor, and employee. He does a good job so the work keeps coming. Next the business owner hires an assistant project manager or estimator, and a full-time office manager to take more of his workload from him so he can handle additional projects. As a micromanager control freak, he gets frustrated with employees not being accountable or doing things the way he wants. He starts to get more and more stressed-out having to keep all the balls in the air, manage lots of people, and get all the work done himself. He feels maxedcontinued on page 69

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Move Your Biz continued from page 68 out, spread too thin, over-worked, and out of control without systems, structure, standards, accountable employees, or a handle on job costs. Cash-flow is tight, he spends lots of time chasing money, and he isn’t getting a very big paycheck for all the effort and time he’s spending. He is tired of running in place as work starts to drag him down with all the pressures of owning and running a business. He is not achieving his entrepreneurial dream, and doesn’t see how he can get it to work, or move to the next level. In summary, the business runs him and he has no life! Most small business owners get stuck at Level 3. Some grow to as many as twenty field employees, two superintendents, and a project manager. And others grow even bigger before they reach their limits and get stuck. When the company grows to the level where the business owner can’t control everything himself or make all the important decisions anymore, it gets stuck and stops growing. At this point, the small business owner is unable to manage, supervise, and be involved in everything himself. He or she knows they need to do something different, let go, hire better people, delegate, install systems, find better customers, improve service, get a better handle on costs, or find more hours in the day. He doesn’t know how to Burke ad 7-31-20.qxp_Dennis Burke Inc 8/2/20 get itLubricants all done half-page by himself. This is when heKfinally says:

555 Constitution Drive • Taunton, MA 02780

“HELP! I’m stuck and can’t get my business to work!” A business that doesn’t make a profit or grow will never meet the needs, wants, and desires of a driven entrepreneur business owner. When you get stuck at Step 3, you begin to hate going to work because of all the demands, stress, and pressure to get everything done for your customers, employees, bankers, bonding company, subcontractors, and suppliers. So what should a business owner do who is stuck at Step 3? Remember your dream of a growing profitable business to achieve your vision and goals? At Step 3 you realize in order to grow and be profitable, you need to install systems, structure, scorecards, job cost scorecards, software, and a strong management team. Plus you must get re-focused on what you want to achieve. You are a BIZ-Builder who wants to own a successful, thriving, profitable and growing company.

Step 4 - BIZ-BUILDER As a BIZ-Builder, you focus energy on improvement, innovation, scaling and building a bigger better business. You keep moving towards achieving your vision, target and goal of owning a company that works instead of you supervising, directing, controlling, or doing all the work. You must now focus on leading and growing a highly profitable company instead of spending your time doing work like esti7:45 PM Page 1 continued on page 70

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Move Your Biz continued from page 69 mating, project management or scheduling crews. You change your priorities to finding and building high margin loyal customers, developing and coaching top talent, implementing systems and structure, installing leading-edge integrated software, building an accountable management team, and moving your company to a higher level. What do successful business owners have in common? How did they break through from Step 2 to Step 3 to Step 4, and then on to Step 5? The only way to become a ‘Best In Class’ business and move up to a higher level is to start by implementing a strategic business plan, what I call the BIZ-Builder Blueprint. To do this, you must replace yourself with operational systems, implement a pro-active hiring and recruiting program, get your company organized so it will operate without your constant supervision, install structure and a management team who can run your company, and implement job cost scorecards to eliminate profit margin fade and track your progress towards achieving the results you want. This is the only way you can get beyond you as the business. To start drafting your BIZ-BUILDER BLUEPRINT: 1. Write out a specific VISION of what you want your business to become over the next five years. 2. Know and track your NUMBERS. Implement an accurate estimating and job cost scorecard system to guarantee you will always make a high profit margin. 3. Replace yourself with written operational SYSTEMS. 4. Install a company STRUCTURE organized with the right people so it will operate without your constant supervision. 5. Implement a written sales, marketing and estimating plan that delivers great customers and high profit work without having to bid against too many low-priced competitors. 6. Start building a MANAGEMENT TEAM who can run your company and is accountable and responsible for results.

Step 5 - BEST IN CLASS BUSINESS As you implement and develop your vision, systems, structure, people, scorecards, and management team, your company will continually improve and move to an even higher level. And the better it gets, combined with implementing your BIZ-Builder Blueprint strategic business plan, setting and tracking your targets and goals, monitoring and enforcing your systems and strategy, producing accurate estimates, tracking job costs, and winning better customers and contracts, the more profit you’ll make. With you as the visionary leader, head coach, talent director, and customer builder, your company will continuously scale-up, grow & achieve ‘Best In Class’ profits and results. Your priorities, focus, planning, leadership, and diligence will deliver a business run by your management team delivering on-budget field production, customer referrals, a great place to work which attracts the top talent available, high profits, steady growth and increasing equity investments.

Step 6 - WEALTHY CONTRACTOR Eventually you will graduate to Step 6 and become a real company owner. When your role is primarily the owner and leader instead of the manager or worker, you’ll have time to find better customers and project opportunities, seek wealth building investments, develop new business ventures, and enjoy the benefits of business ownership. Your business will work for you! Being wealthy is more than having a lot of money and net worth. It also includes the freedom to enjoy the benefits of a business that works for you. At level 6, your company will be achieving its vision, targets, and making ‘Best In Class’ profit margins. Your business will work without the owner’s full-time involvement in day-to-day operations with systems, processes, strategies, and structure in place. Your management team will run the business and do everything necessary to perform and hit the overall goals of steady growth, great people, loyal repeat continued on page 71


Serving The Construction Industry Since 1938 75 Federal Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02110-1997 OFFICE 617.426.7300 • FAX 617.426.2245 WWW.DARMODYMERLINO.COM



AUGUST, 2021

Move Your Biz continued from page 70 customers, and earnings. And at this level, the owner will act more like a CEO than the president. As your company gets better and better moving to a higher level, it will start to develop more and more equity which will be available to invest. The process of moving to level 5 shouldn’t take more than 5 to 7 years if you make it a priority. By your 7th year, you should have accumulated enough capital to start a wealth building and investment program. Many contractors start buying, remodeling or developing income producing property that will continue to produce passive income for many years into the future.

Step 7 - YOUR BIZ WORKS! When your business works, you become the owner, stockholder, investor and opportunity seeker. You also act as the CEO, leader, advisor and mentor to your management team and key people. Your time is spent reaping the benefits of your business without having to be there full-time. This allows you to seek additional business opportunities, great customers, investors, and become a leader in your community which will also help your company grow. NOW - Get unstuck and move to a higher level! When you get stuck, you hate going to work because you have more demands and pressures than you can handle. So, what should you do to get unstuck and grow your business? 1. Re-focus on what you want! Stop and remember your original dream of owning a growing and profitable company that achieves your vision and goals, is organized, makes lots of money, has great customers, is run by your empowered management team, and gives you freedom and time to enjoy your life. Email gh@hardhatpresenta to get the BIZ-Builder Blueprint worksheets to jumpstart the process. 2. Realize you are a BIZ-Builder! You will never reach your goals if you don’t grow. Are you too busy working to make any money? To grow, you’ve got to let go, delegate, and do what you do best. Growth starts with customers who want what you sell. And you are the best salesperson in your company. You must make time to go out and build relationships with loyal customers plus find new ones. 3. Replace yourself with BIZ-Systems! In order to delegate to your team, you need written systems and procedures in place that don’t rely on you dictating and directing every move and decision on every transaction. Put your standards on paper and train your people to follow them. This is how you get beyond YOU as the business. Systems allow you to get out of doing and supervising work, and create time to make building your AUGUST, 2021

business the top priority. 4. Hire the best! Now that you know where you are going and have systems in place, you can start to build a strong management team prepared to take your company to the next level. Remember, good people without written systems can’t do a great job without your constant input. 5. Enjoy the ride! With your company organized and growing, you can now focus on creating more opportunities for your business to prosper and grow. To get unstuck, what will you do differently with your time to get your business to deliver exactly what you want? Decide what you’ll do to make this happen. n George Hedley CPBC is a certified professional construction BIZCOACH and popular speaker. He helps contractors build better businesses, grow, increase profits, develop management teams, improve field production, and get their companies to work. He is the best-selling author of “Get Your Construction Business To Always Make A Profit!” available on To get his free e-newsletter, start a personalized BIZCOACH program, attend a BIZ-BUILDER Boot Camp, or get a discount at www. online university for contractors, Visit or E-mail

SAND & STONE CORP. 192 Plain St. North Attleboro, MA 02760 (508) 699-1922



E.H. Perkins Construction, Inc. & Subsidiaries P.O. Box 301, Wayland, MA 01778 (508) 358-6161 • (781) 890-6505





Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer


Advertisers’ Index ATS Equipment, Inc. ...............................................................8 Allegiance Trucks, Inc............................................................56 American Shoring, Inc........................................ Ins. Back Cvr. Aon Construction Services Group.........................................48 B2W........................................................................................39 Badger Daylighting................................................................22 BakerCorp..............................................................................66 Benevento Companies..........................................................62 Boro Sand & Stone Corp.......................................................71 Brennan Consulting...............................................................15 Dennis K. Burke, Inc..............................................................69 C&S Insurance Agency..........................................................12 Centinel Financial Group, LLC...............................................62 Concrete Systems, Inc.............................................................2 Core & Main.............................................................................4 Cumberland Quarry Corp......................................................19 Dagle Electrical Construction Corp.......................................18 Darmody, Merlino & Co., LLP................................................70 Dedham Recycled Gravel......................................................66 DeSanctis Insurance Agency, Inc. ........................................37 Dig Safe System, Inc.............................................................56 Jack Doheny Company............................................................9 The Driscoll Agency...............................................................58 EJ...........................................................................................61 Eastern States Insurance Agency, Inc..................................46 Eastpoint Lasers, LLC...........................................................25 T. L. Edwards, Inc.................................................................. 11 Ferguson Waterworks............................................................25 Gorilla Hydraulic Breakers..................................................... 11 L. Guerini Group, Inc..............................................................37 Hinckley Allen LLP.................................................................32 John Hoadley & Sons, Inc.....................................................67 Hydrograss Technologies Inc................................................68 Industrial Safety & Rescue....................................................44 JESCO...................................................................................54 P. A. Landers, Inc...................................................................62 Lawrence-Lynch Corp............................................................60 Lorusso Corp.........................................................................46 Lorusso Heavy Equipment, LLC..............................................6 Mass Broken Stone Company...............................................68 Milton CAT...............................................................Back Cover Monroe Tractor.......................................................................31 NSI Contracting .....................................................................54 National Trench Safety..........................................................26 Norfolk Power Equipment, Inc...............................................13 North American Crane & Rigging LLC..................................30 North East Shoring Equipment, LLC.....................................64 Northland JCB/Alta Equipment Company.............................16 Northwestern Mutual..............................................................60 Ocean State Oil......................................................................44 Pawtucket Hot Mix Asphalt....................................................48 E. H. Perkins Construction Co., Inc.......................................72 Perma-Patch, LLC..................................................................33 Podgurski Corp......................................................................52 E. J. Prescott, Inc................................................Ins. Front Cvr. Putnam Pipe Corporation......................................................58 Rain For Rent-New England..................................................10 Read Custom Soils................................................................64 Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers......................................................38 Schmidt Equipment, Inc...........................................................1 Scituate Concrete Products Corp..........................................28 Scrap-It, Inc............................................................................63 Shea Concrete Products, Inc. ...............................................36 SITECH New England............................................................24 Starkweather & Shepley Ins. Brokerage, Inc........................20 Tonry Insurance Group, Inc...................................................52 United Concrete Products.....................................................52 United Rentals Trench Safety................................................34 Watertown Ford Commercial.................................................55 Webster One Source.............................................................60 C. N. Wood Co., Inc. ............................................................. 14 Woodco Machinery, Inc.........................................................40


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Offer valid from August 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021 on new small and compact Cat® machines. Offer subject to machine availability and credit approval by Cat Financial. Not all customers will qualify. Payments based on 60-month loan. The Cat Customer Value Agreement (CVA) with Equipment Protection Plan (EPP) includes a minimum 3 maintenance parts kits (exception: small wheel loader includes 6 kits). The maintenance parts cover the first 1,500 hours (estimated 3 years, 3,000 hours for small wheel loader) of machine utilization. The kit contains one set of parts for regular planned maintenance under normal operating conditions. In some severe applications where maintenance parts need to be replaced more frequently, additional parts will be at customer’s expense. Offer excludes additional maintenance parts, dealer labor, wear parts, S∙O∙SSM and fluids. Payments do not include taxes, freight, set-up, delivery, document fees, inspections, additional options, or attachments. Offer may change without prior notice and cannot be combined with any other offers. Additional terms and conditions may apply.

Profile for Ucane

August 2021 Construction Outlook  

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