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OCT | 2017 A PUBLICATION OF THE UTILITY CONTRACTORS’ ASSOCIATION OF NEW ENGLAND, INC.

ROBERT B. OUR COMPANY AT 60 YEARS

UCANE Interview:

Representative Jennifer Benson

• The MA AG’s Bid Unit Rejects Mandatory Minimum Unit Price Requirements in MassDOT Procurement


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Years of Excellence 1954-2017

OCTOBER, 2017

IN THIS ISSUE

OFFICERS President PAUL SCENNA

Albanese D&S, Inc.

President-Elect RICHARD PACELLA, JR. R. M. Pacella, Inc.

Treasurer MARCELLA ALBANESE

Albanese Brothers, Inc.

Secretary RYAN McCOURT

McCourt Construction Company

BOARD OF DIRECTORS VINCENT BARLETTA

Barletta Heavy Division

JOHN BERKSZA

Eastern Insurance Group, LLC

NICK BIELLO

J. D’Amico, Inc.

TONY BORRELLI

Celco Construction Corp.

GERRY CARNEY, JR.

C. N. Wood Company, Inc.

KEVIN COLE

J. F. White Contracting Co.

BRIAN COONEY

C. C. Construction, Inc.

GREG FEENEY

Feeney Bros. Excavation, LLC

JERRY GAGLIARDUCCI

Gagliarducci Construction, Inc.

MARCO GIOIOSO

P. Gioioso & Sons, Inc.

A. J. LORUSSO

Lorusso Heavy Equipment, LLC

AL MORTEO

FED. CORP.

JOHN OUR

Robert B. Our Co., Inc.

JOSEPH PACELLA

RJV Construction Corp.

BRIAN RAWSTON

Jay Cashman, Inc.

CHRIS VALENTI

GVC Construction, Inc.

KEN VOGEL

WES Construction Corp.

DAVID ZOPPO

R. Zoppo Corp.

ANNE KLAYMAN

Executive Director

5 President’s Message:

Wynn Boston Harbor Development Casino & Resort: Massachusetts’ Largest Private Project

7 Legislative Update:

• Mass. Environmental Groups Sue EPA over Recently Delayed Stormwater Regulations • Two Reports Focus on Transportation; Baker-Polito Administration Announces Commission to Identify Potential Funding Needs • Cyr Addresses Water Infrastructure Alliance • Design for Wareham’s First Water Treatment Plant Nears Completion • Auditor Proposes Regulations to Govern Privatization of State Services • News in Brief

19 UCANE Interview:

Representative Jennifer E. Benson

23 UCANE’s Annual Christmas Party & Scholarship Auction 25 Legal Corner:

The Massachusetts Attorney General’s Bid Unit Rejects Mandatory Minimum Unit Price Requirements in MassDOT Procurement

27 Under the Hard Hat with UCANE’s Officers & Board Members: Q&A with UCANE Board Member Brian Cooney (C.C. Construction, Inc.)

31 Plymouth’s $48 Million Sewer Project Ahead of Schedule, Under Budget 34 Contractor Member of the Month: The Robert B. Our Company at 60 Years: Capitalizing on Opportunity, Built on Trust

41 Taste Test Proves Boston’s Drinking Water is New England’s Best 43 BWSC Director Wins Public Service Award 44 UCANE’s September Dinner Meeting 51 Technology in Construction: Equifax Announced the Largest Data Breach in History

55 UCANE’s Safety Corner:

Managing a Bilingual Workforce

57 Champions Circle: Joe Andruzzi Foundation 59 Schmidt Equipment, Inc. Opens New Facility 60 UCANE’s Updated Employee Safety Manuals Now Available 61 UCANE Welcomes New Members 63 Software Solutions: Driving Profitability with a Field-Centric Approach to Cost Management

67 Financial Management:

• Prepare Your Kids for Financial Independence • New IRS Ruling May Rescue Estate Plans • Tax Court Approves 100% Business Meal Deduction

Editor: Anne Klayman, Associate Editor: Suzanne Savage, Magazine Designer: Sherri Klayman Construction Outlook Chairman: Paul Scenna Editorial Board: Paul Scenna, Richard Pacella, Jr., Marcella Albanese, and Ryan McCourt 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: aklayman@ucane.com; Website: www.ucane.com. 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.


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Wynn Boston Harbor Development Casino & Resort: Massachusetts’ Largest Private Project Anyone driving on Route 93 just north of Boston has had the opportunity to see the progress of the mammoth Wynn Boston Harbor Development’s Casino & Resort Project. The project, which is the largest private development in Massachusetts history, began in September 2015 and is slated to finish on time and open in June of 2019.

A

t UCANE’s Dinner Meeting on September 27, our keynote speaker Peter Campot, Director of Construction for Wynn Design and Development, made an incredibly interesting and informative presentation about the project and specifically the magnitude of coordination and project management necessary to maintain their aggressive schedule. Many UCANE members are performing subcontracting work on the project. (See story on page 45.) To make this level of investment in Massachusetts, companies such as Wynn Development must be confident that our State is welcoming to business and is on a steady “economic growth path.” Many large companies have moved their headquarters, or are planning to move here, including General Electric. It is a credit to our elected leaders that they have created a positive economic environment, which is attractive to these major corporations. However, none of this economic growth would have happened if we did not have the ability to provide the infrastructure – water and sewer systems, roads and bridges, transit and rail – to support these businesses, and the key personnel they need to attract. And when it comes to building infrastructure, UCANE members are the best. They and our Industry should be recognized and commended for their contribution to our State’s prosperity. The Wynn site, in particular, was very challeng-

OCTOBER, 2017

ing. While its waterfront location made it appealing, it was also a former chemical manufacturing facility site, which required significant cleanup of various types and degrees of hazardous soils. At our Dinner Meeting, Mr. Campot detailed the complexity and magnitude of the site work and praised UCANE member J. Derenzo Co. for their work. There is still a lot of work to be done there, and I have little doubt that other UCANE members working on the project will also do a first-class job. It makes it even more special that all of this is happening in my hometown of Everett! As I mentioned, no economic growth can happen without a modern infrastructure, clean drinking water and wastewater treatment, which are some of the more important needs. Projects like Wynn Boston Harbor provide a perfect example why cities and towns need to upgrade and maintain their aboveand underground infrastructure. Whether it is new large-scale developments, housing, or downtown revitalization, these projects provide for the future economic growth, and the health and prosperity of their communities. There have been too many examples of opportunities lost, simply because a city or town lacked a viable infrastructure. UCANE members have the expertise to complete the most difficult of projects, both large and small, and hopefully there will be many more of them in the years to come. n

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Massachusetts Environmental Groups Sue EPA over Recently Delayed Stormwater Regulations

en Massachusetts environmental advocacy organizations sued the United States Environmental Protection agency (EPA) in midSeptember in an effort to require the enforcement of new stormwater permitting requirements. With less than a week before the new regulations were slated to go into effect, the EPA announced that it would delay their implementation while federal courts resolved lawsuits that had been filed by several municipalities and organizations, challenging the agency's authority under the Clean Water Act to expand the existing 2003 permit. In July, the Massachusetts Municipal Association (MMA) noted that the EPA agreed to a request that was filed jointly by the Massachusetts Coalition for Water Resources Stewardship, the Town of Franklin and the City of Lowell asking EPA Region 1 to delay the permit for one year pending judicial review. According to a press release issued at that time by the MMA, the EPA wrote that “it would like to explore the use of alternative dispute resolution to engage with petitioners, and that the postponement will give the EPA time to determine if any changes to the permit for small Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4) are appropriate.” The MS4 permit, which will regulate stormwater in more than 250 municipalities in Massachusetts, was scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2017, with the first action item for municipalities to comply due in September. The stay delays permit implementation until July 1, 2018, and postpones the due date for communities to file their Notice of Intent as well. OCTOBER, 2017

Under the MS4 permit, municipalities must develop, implement, and enforce a stormwater management program that controls pollutants to the maximum extent practicable, protects water quality, and satisfies appropriate requirements of the federal Clean Water Act. The MS4 permit requires implementation of six minimum control measures. Environmental groups moved towards legal action after citing the damage done to existing work to comply with the MS4 permitting to date. To that end, the Ipswich River Alliance, one of the petitioners to the court, stated they were seeking relief due to the fact they and the 21 cities and towns within the local watershed had been working collaboratively on this permit for more than 10 years. As reported by numerous entities, stormwater is the largest source of pollution affecting rivers and streams in Massachusetts. Pollutants, such as fertilizers, harmful bacteria, oil, gas, toxic metals, and salt, all often wash into nearby waterways with runoff from land, roads, and buildings without proper controls in place. It is thought that the eventual MS4 permit will focus on pollution prevention, which is largely comprised of public education to reduce sources of pollution that get into stormwater, and finding where pollutants are coming from and removing them. Expect to hear more about the consolidation of cases or the staggering of case decisions until the original federal appeals court decision is handed down. continued on page 9

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Legislative Update continued from page 7

Two Reports Focus on Transportation; Baker-Polito Administration Announces Commission to Identify Potential Funding Needs

T

he Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation (MTF) recently announced that it had completed an analysis of the implementation of the Transportation Finance Commission’s (TFC) recommendations from 10 years ago. In releasing its report, the MTF stated that “[i]n light of the many changes occurring in the transportation realm, the Foundation strongly urges the Commonwealth to reconsider and reshape its planning process for the years ahead. The TFC narrative that directed policy for a decade and drove vital changes to fix the state’s transportation system is no longer valid because the future challenges the state must confront are intrinsically different than those of a decade ago. This reality requires a new blueprint to address the many issues that have emerged since, or were not contemplated when, the TFC released its reports a decade ago.” The MTF’s report called for an updating of the TFC’s identified goals given the rise of ride-for-hire services (Uber/Lyft); increased motor vehicle fuel efficiency and the rise of autonomous vehicles. The Massachusetts Senate also released its report, Mass Moves, on the Commonwealth’s transportation needs developed from a series of statewide listening sessions held throughout the summer across the Commonwealth. As part of the final report, Mass Moves’ authors found that “Massachusetts residents envision an affordable, convenient, and clean 21st-century transportation system that will spur economic growth and opportunity across the Commonwealth. They believe in a system funded by all, in which all citizens and businesses have access to public transit, roads, bridges, and paths that are safe and in good repair. They envision a robust public transit system across the entire Commonwealth: a regional rail system should connect east to west and north to south; buses should run more frequently and to more places, bypassing traffic where feasible; and communities should be walkable, bike-able, and accessible by public transportation.” The report, while providing a snapshot of residents’ and businesses’ opinions about transportation in the Commonwealth, did not make any further legislative recommendations. The two reports came at a time when the BakerPolito Administration has had to react to their handling of the Commonwealth’s transportation system.

OCTOBER, 2017

For its part, the Administration, which has focused on transportation a fair amount, stated that it is forming a commission to look closer at the related issues – despite their familiarity with many of the issues identified in both reports. While the commissions the Governor recently formed tend to involve members of the legislature and his Secretariats, there is the potential that the Commission may include private organizations as well. The focus of the “to be formed” commission will be whether the Commonwealth’s transportation system has immediate funding needs and, if so, what is the best strategy for addressing it. To learn more about the MTF report, Transportation in Transition, please visit: https://www. masstaxpayers.org/sites/masstaxpayers.org/files/ Transportation%20in%20Transition.pdf. The Massachusetts Senate’s report, Mass Moves, can be found at https://malegislature.gov/cc/Reports/massmovesfull-report-2017.pdf continued on page 11

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Legislative Update continued from page 9

Cyr Addresses Water Infrastructure Alliance

T

he Water Infrastructure Alliance, a coalition of over 20 organizations concerned with meeting the Commonwealth’s water infrastructure needs, recently hosted Senator Julian Cyr, who discussed his legislation to address the Cape Cod and Islands water infrastructure needs. When the Massachusetts Water Infrastructure Finance Commission found that the Commonwealth is facing a $21 billion funding gap and the Massachusetts Auditor’s Division of Local Mandates determined the funding gap to be approximately $18 billion, both reported that Cape Cod and the Islands have an estimated shortfall of $4 billion-$6 billion. As such, one third of the Commonwealth’s $18 billion to $21 billion water infrastructure needs are within Cape Cod and the Islands. For a region so dependent on water – whether to fuel its tourism, economic development or, simply, meet its every day residential needs – it is largely thought to be an unsustainable burden. Accordingly, Senator Cyr, along with his Cape and Island colleagues in the House and Senate, filed Senate Bill 2163 to establish the framework for moving forward to steer the region’s water infrastructure response. In addressing the WIA, Senator Cyr em-

phasized that Cape Cod and the Islands, because of Cape Cod’s sole source aquifer, geographic configuration, and extensive inter-municipal nitrogen pollution, needs a regional entity to oversee the region’s water infrastructure financing needs. The proposed legislation does not create a new Massachusetts Water Resources Authority nor replace the vital work of the Massachusetts Clean Water Trust. Instead, the legislation simply ensures that municipalities on Cape Cod and the Islands work in partnership – through shared decision-making and resource allocation – that focuses exclusively on water infrastructure. In particular, it is hoped that the soon to be created “Cape Cod Water Protection Trust” will act as the conduit for focusing the region’s water infrastructure efforts as it follows through on the recently updated Section 208 Plan. Senator Cyr’s legislation, which is currently before the Joint Committee on the Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture, will likely have a public hearing in October. To review this legislation, please visit: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/190/S2163. continued on page 13

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Legislative Update continued from page 11

A

Design for Wareham’s First Water Treatment Plant Nears Completion

ccording to an article published in the Wareham Week, the engineering firm tasked with building Wareham’s first water treatment plant is nearly done designing a $12.5 million facility that will deliver “crystal clear” tap water. Once completed, the 7,921-square-footplant will treat all water pumped from the Wareham Fire District’s well fields off Maple Springs Road. The project will not affect Onset residents whose water infrastructure is overseen by the Onset Fire District, a separate entity. The project was approved by voters last April during the Wareham Fire District’s Annual Meeting. The plant was proposed to address high amounts of iron and manganese in the drinking water supply. Water officials said the problem of iron, which causes tap water to become a rusty color, is mostly cosmetic. However, high levels of manganese is known to cause health issues, in-

cluding neurological problems. The manganese issue prompted a warning from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection to the district. Currently, Wareham water is treated using chlorine and lime, but does not address the high mineral levels. The new plant will be equipped with technology that lowers mineral levels and reduces the need for chlorine. While design plans should be completed by late December, the plant is projected to start operating by 2020. The new plant will be funded with a low interest, 20-year loan from the Massachusetts Clean Water Trust. While the facility will increase water bills for customers, it is expected to generate longterm benefit for property values. The average bill, which is between $500 and $600 annually, is expected to increase $144. continued on page 15

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Legislative Update continued from page 13

Auditor Proposes Regulations to Govern Privatization of State Services

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uditor Suzanne M. Bump announced in midSeptember that her office is proposing regulations to govern the process of privatizing state services. The proposed regulations are intended to provide more detailed guidance for state agencies and greater transparency for the public on the decision making process of reviewing privatization proposals.

According to a press release from the Office of the State Auditor (OSA), “the proposed regulations make clear how this office conducts its analyses of these [privatization] proposals. They do not create new policy or impose new hurdles—they simply lay out the law’s conditions, and codify the practices of my office, to provide helpful guidance on future proposals.” Under Chapter 296 of the Acts of 1993 (also known as the Taxpayer Protection Act or the Pacheco Law), the OSA is responsible for reviewing proposals from state agencies seeking to privatize a service that is currently performed by public employees. Under the law, state agencies must demonstrate and certify to the OSA that the cost to privatize the service

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will be less than keeping it in-house, of equal or better quality, that the selected contractor has a record of compliance with state regulations, and that the contract will contain required provisions regarding wages, benefits, and personnel. The law also gives the OSA the authority to promulgate regulations related to this oversight responsibility. Among the items the regulations will address are the requirements for bidding on contracts, conditions that an agency must include in privatization contracts, and the financial data that an agency must include in cost estimates for privatization contracts. The OSA will provide interested parties with an opportunity to present written comments through mail or email. The comment period, originally slated for September 21, 2017, has been extended until October 31, 2017. To review the proposed regulations, please visit: https://www.mass.gov/news/auditor-bump-proposesregulations-to-provide-guidance-on-the-privatizationcontinued on page 17 review-process.

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Legislative Update continued from page 15

News in Brief • Norfolk and Bristol State Senate Race. The primary for the State Senate seat in the Norfolk and Bristol District was held in September. On the Democratic side, Paul Feeney, longtime labor organizer, defeated Ted Philips, Chief of Staff to Representative Lou Kafka. The race, which pitted two strong pro-labor candidates against one another, saw Feeney capitalize on his labor background in amassing sizeable union support. Mr. Philips, for his part, impressed residents throughout the district with his knowledge of the issues and district, professionalism and tireless advocacy in his first attempt for public office. On the Republican side, Jacob Ventura, former legislative aide to Representative Steve Howitt, defeated three other challengers. The general election will be held October 17. • Attorney General Report on Wage Theft. According to a recent report by the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office (AGO), Massachusetts employers paid $6 million in required restitution and almost $3 million in penalties for violations of the state's wage and labor laws last fiscal year. In its second annual report on wage theft and labor law enforcement in Massachusetts, the AGO

OCTOBER, 2017

reported 607 cases opened by the Attorney General’s Fair Labor Division in fiscal 2017. The total $8,681,677.98 in restitutions and penalties was more than double the $3,823,392.07 assessed in the 2016 fiscal year. Despite the success of existing laws and regulations, the report comes at a time when the legislature is considering legislation to expand wage laws within the Commonwealth through the use of vicarious liability and stop work orders. • Massachusetts Legislature Considers Budget Overrides. The Massachusetts House of Representatives and the Massachusetts Senate have begun overriding Governor Baker’s budget vetoes. In particular, the House overrode the Governor's veto of line item 22502000, Safe Drinking Water Compliance, to $1,962,185 by adding $175,000 back to the lineitem. The House also overrode the Governor’s veto of line item 2800-0401, for Stormwater Management, which had been reduced by $25,000 to $419,542. The Massachusetts Senate is expected to take up these and other overrides in the coming weeks. n

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Representative Jennifer E. Benson House Chairwoman, Joint Committee on State Administration and Regulatory Oversight

Representative Jennifer Benson grew up in Rochester, New Hampshire where she attended Rochester public schools as a child. She went on to receive a bachelor’s degree in art history from Florida Atlantic University, and a master’s of public administration from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. After moving to Lunenburg, Jennifer’s commitment to education led her to run for the Lunenburg School Committee in 2003. She served for more than five years and was elected Chair, guiding the Committee through a difficult time for the schools. In 2008, she was elected to represent the 37th Middlesex District in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Jennifer currently serves as the Chair of the Joint Committee on State Administration and Regulatory Oversight, which considers matters concerning competitive bidding on public contracts, public construction, open meeting laws, state regulations, state agencies, and lobbyists’ reporting laws.

Q:

over the next 20 years in the Commonwealth. Can you discuss some of the water and sewer infrastructure concerns your district has been addressing?

A:

The towns in my district are working to meet the compliance standards for the MS4 stormwater permits. My office has fielded questions from several towns about recent changes to the regulation timeline, and we’ve worked to get town administrators the most updated information from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

Massachusetts, along with the rest of the country, continues its rebound from the previous economic downturn. Please give your thoughts on how the state will continue to provide local aid to cities and towns to help support basic municipal services, specifically water infrastructure. Even with state revenues coming in lower than expected, we have been able to increase unrestricted general government local aid every year since 2013, and I think that trend will continue. Regarding water infrastructure, the state needs to step up and work with communities to address their antiquated water and sewer systems, especially with the effects of climate change already being felt across the state. I’m a co-sponsor of several water infrastructure bills, including H.2116, An Act Providing for the Establishment of Sustainable Water Resource Funds, and H.2117, An Act Relative to Municipal Assistance for Clean Water and Economic Development Infrastructure. These bills would go a long way toward making investments in repairing and replacing our aging water infrastructure.

Q:

The Massachusetts Water Infrastructure Finance Commission found that there is a $20 billion gap in water and sewer infrastructure

OCTOBER, 2017

A:

The Town of Lunenburg has been exploring an intermunicipal agreement to provide a neighboring town with water, which has led to a lot of discussion about the town’s water supply and water conservation. The Town of Ayer was recently awarded a MassWorks grant to fund a sewer infrastructure expansion that will allow for growth in an industrial area of the town. The towns in my district have had some success, especially in recent years, with state administered grant programs, and have been actively planning for the maintenance and replacement of water and sewer infrastructure. continued on page 21

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Interview continued from page 19

Q:

As House Chair of the Joint Committee on State Administration and Regulatory Oversight, what do you feel are the greatest challenges facing public construction and the construction industry?

A:

The biggest challenge facing public construction is that in recent years, there have been less state and federal dollars available. Capital investment by the state has been stagnant for a few years now, and at the federal level, we see a similar picture. Massachusetts is ranked number 1 in education, health care access, and energy efficiency, because as a state, and as a matter of public policy, we have made these things a priority. If we want to be number 1 in infrastructure and transportation, we need to make those some of our top priorities as well.

Q: A:

As always, I am focused on making sure that the towns of my district receive the local aid and education funding that they need. I have been supportive of efforts to implement the Chapter 70 Foundation Budget Review Commission recommendations, which would result in more funding for public education. n

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UCANE’s Annual Christmas Party & Scholarship Auction Wednesday Evening December 6, 2017 5:00 p.m. The Lantana

43 Scanlon Drive Randolph, MA Our members’ commitment to our Scholarship Program begins when our Association holds its Annual Christmas Party and Scholarship Auction. It is through the generosity of members who donate cash and auction items, and those who attend and bid for items that money is raised for our scholarships... all this to make certain that our Scholarship Program continues.


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The Massachusetts Attorney General’s Bid Unit Rejects Mandatory Minimum Unit Price Requirements in MassDOT Procurement The Bid Unit of the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office (the “AGO”) recently issued a notable decision concerning MassDOT’s use of minimum unit price requirements. The AGO determined that MassDOT’s “minimum pricing policy” violates the competitive bidding laws.

T

he protest arose out of a “various locations” contract for bridge repairs in MassDOT District 2. To prevent penny bidding, MassDOT established minimum acceptable bid prices for 46 unit price items and stated that any bids with prices below the mandatory minimum prices “will be rejected.” One potential bidder challenged this requirement before bid opening, arguing that MassDOT’s minimum pricing requirement would prevent MassDOT from obtaining the lowest price in violation of the bidding laws. The protestor demonstrated that there was at least one prospective bidder whose costs on 14 of the 46 items were $200,000 less than the “mandatory” minimum prices for those items. The protestor also argued that MassDOT’s pricing scheme would prevent bidders from capitalizing on their unique and “hard-earned” advantages in the bidding process in violation of the Appeals Court’s well-known 1984 Boston Water & Sewer Commission decision. For example, one bidder might have surplus materials from a prior project that it could use on the new project at little to no additional cost. In these circumstances, MassDOT’s “mandatory” minimum OCTOBER, 2017

prices would prevent the bidder from leveraging this advantage and force the bidder to bid higher than its cost. The AGO upheld the protest, finding that the minimum pricing requirements violate the competitive bidding laws because they “prevent the award of the contract to the lowest responsible and eligible bidder.” The AGO also agreed that the pricing scheme prevents bidders from leveraging their unique advantages in violation of the Boston Water & Sewer Commission case. According to the AGO, MassDOT is already adequately protected against penny bidding because it can reject materially unbalanced bids. As a result, the AGO directed MassDOT to rescind its minimum unit price requirement and bid the project accordingly. n

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with UCANE’s Officers and Board Members How did you get started in the underground construction industry and what type of jobs does C.C. Construction, Inc. do? I was fortunate enough to have been born into the industry. Our family business started in 1981 and currently my father Chris and mother Dyanne are active owners. C.C. Construction is a medium-size site development and utility contractor in Southeastern MA. C.C.’s project range from large apartment building developments to residential subdivisions across Southeast MA. With over 50 pieces of heavy equipment and a crew of 45, C.C. tackles multiple projects at a time. We also perform public water and sewer projects on the Cape and Islands as well as Southeastern MA. We also do some coastal work like rock seawalls, beach nourishment, and cast in place revetments. How long have you been with the company and what type of positions have you held? I worked as a laborer at the company during the summers while in high school and college. After graduating from Northeastern University in 2009, I began here full time, and now hold the position as Project Manager. Like any small family business, I’m asked to wear a lot of hats at C.C. Construction. My father made sure that I learned the business from the ground up. Today, I focus my attention on project management and business development, but if needed, I will jump in a machine or grab a shovel, whatever it takes to get the job done. OCTOBER, 2017

UCANE Board Member Brian Cooney Project Manager, C.C. Construction, Inc.

How long have you been involved with UCANE and why did you decide to get involved? C.C. Construction has been a UCANE member since 2009. A few years ago, I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Phil Jasset and he spent some time introducing the benefits of UCANE to me and explained the work that UCANE was doing to support companies like C.C. Construction. I have a long career ahead of me in this business and I want to learn as much as I can and do what I can to keep the industry thriving. UCANE is the dominant voice in our business and I wanted our company to be a part of that. I first started attending some Government Relations Committee meetings as a guest and saw the good things that UCANE was doing; and in 2015 I was elected to the Board of Directors. continued on page 29

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Under the Hard Hat continued from page 27 What is the condition of the industry as you currently see it? Currently I see the industry overall as healthy, but I also see Cities and Towns getting pulled in many directions when it comes to financial budgets. It’s important that we continue to speak up about water and sewer needs and their importance in protecting our standard of living, our health, and our environmental resources. This is important for the whole state but probably nowhere as important as it is on Cape Cod.

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Plymouth’s $48 Million Sewer Project Ahead of Schedule, Under Budget Nearly two years after the first sewer leak was detected, the end is in sight.

By next month the backhoes, excavators, and armies of construction workers will depart; the $48 million sewer force main project is nearly complete. [Wicked Local file photo]

W

hen Plymouth’s 15-year-old sewer force main began to literally crumble before our eyes – in late December 2015 – sewer water began to bubble up from the ground, just a few feet away from the expressway. The town’s Department of Public Works went into crisis mode and within a few weeks – after more breaks in the iron pipeline – it was clear that the entire system would have to be replaced at a cost of close to $50 million. Now, nearly two years after the first leak was detected, the end is in sight. “We are pleased to say that we are nearing completion,” DPW Director Jonathan Beder told the Old Colony this week. “We have 1,500 feet left on Westerly, 1,000 feet on Alden, and approximately 1,400 in the easement along Route 3 before the treatment plant,” Beder said. “We anticipate that all pipe work will be done the first week in November 2017.”

OCTOBER, 2017

They test the pipe as they install it, and Beder says that once fully installed, the redundant pipe (there are now two parallel pipes in the ground) will go into operation and become the town’s primary sewer force main. Though the pipe will be operational in November, restoration work (on lawns, gardens, sidewalks, driveways and other areas disrupted by the work) will continue through the fall and, in a few areas, will likely last until the spring. “This has been an extensive project,” Beder said, “and we are very pleased that it will be completed ahead of schedule and under budget.” Most agree it is a project that never should have had to be undertaken at all, at least not so soon after the force main was completed in 2000, and that is the subject of ongoing litigation. The town filed suit against the sewer system operator last year to try to recover costs. continued on page 33

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Plymouth continued from page 31 Since the full scope of the work was determined and construction began, the DPW and contractors have moved rapidly forward with few disruptions to their schedule. And with the end in sight, and also the time when the town will have to start paying for the new, redundant sewer force main, the news is also good. According to Finance Director Lynn Barrett, the Massachusetts Clean Water Trust Board of Trustees has approved Plymouth’s request for “principal forgiveness” through their Affordability Program. “There is a federal grant condition that requires the Trust give away as principal forgiveness a portion of the federal grant,” Barrett explained. “Also, through an amendment to the Clean Water Act, the Trust created a new ranking system for these funds. It takes per capita income, employment rate and population trends and comes up with an adjusted per capita income for each community throughout the state. “Any community below the state average receives a subsidy, divided up among three tiers to target the subsidy to the neediest communities. Plymouth is in the first tier, meaning we are closer

to the state average, so do not receive as much subsidy as say a more in-need community, but we still receive some.” The Board of Trustees has also agreed to stagger the borrowing of the $48.2 million over a four year period equally on an annual basis, Barrett said. “What this means is we are gradually building up each year one-quarter of the total borrowing until we have borrowed long-term the full amount,” Barret said. “The plan right now is to do each borrowing over a 30 year period at the 2.4 percent, under the MassDEP CWT program. This borrowing program will start with the first loan’s principal and interest starting in the Fiscal 2019 budget.” What does it mean to the town? “What it means in savings is we don’t have to borrow $744,157 right off the top of the $48.2 million,” Barrett said. “The staggered borrowing equates to a deferral of principal and interest payments in the first three years of borrowing (FY2019, 2020 and 2021) of approximately $3.5 million to the end of the borrowing schedule (FY2049, 2050 and 2051).” Written by Frank Mand. Reprinted from Wicked Local Plymouth. n

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The Robert B. Our Company at 60 Years: Capitalizing on Opportunity... Built on Trust

In 1957, commercial fisherman Robert B. Our Sr., in search of a way to supplement his income to support his growing family when the weather kept him from fishing, discovered that only a few companies were pumping septic systems on Cape Cod. With a seasonal and year-round building boom just beginning, he seized the opportunity. Our bought a truck and got to work. He was immediately successful and Robert B. Our Co., Inc. was born. Sixty years later, the Robert B. Our Company has a fleet of trucks, 160 employees and serves both residential and commercial customers, some 4,000, in fact. Over the decades, the Harwich company seized the opportunity to expand the business into other areas of Massachusetts. Today it is one of the top general contractors in Massachusetts with plumbing, electrical, and mechanical divisions. Throughout the years, the Ours capitalized on opportunities, from the building boom of the 1960s through the 1970s and the peninsula’s unprecedented growth that fueled the construction industry, to current regional concerns about water pollution and wastewater management. Robert B. Our Sr. recognized early on that diversifying the business was key to the successful growth of the company. continued on page 36

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A Robert B. Our Company crew digs up a street in downtown Falmouth for the town's sewering project.

OCTOBER, 2017

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Robert B. Our Co., Inc. continued from page 34 Robert Sr. started the business with a handful of workers; his three sons quickly learned the business as well. His wife Joan held down the home front as well as managed the office. “She was the glue that held everything together,” said son Chris Our of his mother. As teenagers, John, Chris, and Robert Jr. started working summers for their dad. John said one of his first jobs was to ride along with new drivers and show them the routes familiar to him from riding along with his father. Like their father, the Our boys didn't go to college (the one regret both say they share) but went from high school "to the trenches" where they quickly fell in step with the long hours needed to do the job. “Back then there were a lot of cottages and a lot of little septic systems,” reflects Chris. “There were only five of us and we'd work from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. every day. We'd go to [the former] Thompson's Clam Bar and haul 2,500 gallon loads, making five trips a day to the landfill.” Technology began to impact the business, especially the change in the type of septic pumpers, from so-called “mud suckers,” diaphanous pumps that took an hour to pump a septic tank, to vacuum pumpers, which could empty a septic tank in 6-10 minutes, allowing the company to increase its customer base. While septic pumping and service remained at the forefront of their business in the early years, Robert Sr. began to expand its business lines and services in the building boom years in the 1960s and 1970s. Site development was added to its services (tree removal, lot leveling, foundation construc-

Robert B. Our Sr. started the company in 1957 after observing there were few businesses pumping septic systems on Cape Cod, even though demand was high. tion, installation of water, septic, and driveways), catering to homeowners, general contractors, and businesses. When the state mandated new homes (or older homes with failed cesspools) to install enclosed and larger treatment systems known as Title 5, the Company in 1977 bought Shorey Precast of Yarmouth, which made precast for the Title 5 systems. In the 1980s, communities began to have concerns about water quality and the Robert B. Our Co. obtained contracts for municipal water projects. After hurricanes and nor'easters battered the Cape in the late 1980s and

The Robert B. Our family celebrates 60 years in business.

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Crew pours a concrete panel for a new boat ramp in Dennis, MA.

early 1990s, homeowners, towns, and other entities began to shore up the coastline with revetments to slow erosion. One of the Company's first projects of this kind was for the U.S. Coast Guard Station, located directly across from where a break in Chatham's barrier beach had occurred. Chris said the project was one of the most challenging of his career due to its scope and difficulty. Construction slowed a bit on Cape Cod in the 1990s, but the Company continued its expansion, acquiring Cape Cod Ready Mix, a major concrete supplier; offering landscaping materials to homeowners and businesses, and becoming certified as a state-approved recycling facility for concrete, asphalt, brush, grass, and wood waste. In the 21st century, the company incorporated more computerized technology, including GPS to modernize the business. They purchased tugboats and a dredger to further expand into the marine construction field, allowing them to construct boardwalks, bridges, boat ramps, sea retaining walls, and more revetments. RBO repaired the iconic Uncle Tim's Bridge, a pedestrian walkway across a Wellfleet saltmarsh and this year, completed the reconstruction of Plymouth's T-Wharf. Recently, a new opportunity for wastewater management on municipal levels was identified with the discovery that septic systems were unable to prevent nitrogen from leaching into groundwater and deteriorating salt and fresh water bodies. The Company was contracted to construct portions of treatment systems in Barnstable, Chatham, Falmouth, and Provincetown and this fall, they began a new project on Nantucket Island, installing 90,000 feet of sewer pipe. Water projects continue to be a focus. The Robert B. Our Company installed 21,000 feet of water main in Hamilton, a town north of Boston. Their crews also worked continued on page 39

A precast concrete pile cap is rigged and hoisted, ready to set in place at Wychmere Harbor pier in Harwich Port, MA.

A camera is inserted into the sewer at the Riverview Restaurant in South Yarmouth during the cleaning process.

Crew lays water mains for the town of Eastham's Municipal Water Project in 2016.

OCTOBER, 2017

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Robert B. Our Co., Inc. continued from page 37 on Eastham's $130 million water project, constructing two well pumping stations and installing water mains, hydrants, valves, and service connections. For their work on this project Robert B. Our earned the 2017 Project of the Year Award from the New England chapter of the American Public Works Association. The company made two more acquisitions in the 2000s: Acme, a Falmouth precast company, and Capewide Enterprises, a septic pumping and installation company in Mashpee, expanding its reach on the Upper Cape. Robert B. Our Sr. passed away in September 2007 but the company remains a family business, with 13 family members employed. Sons Chris and John (Robert Jr. passed away in 1992) and daughter Hope run the company that is still located in their small hometown of Harwich. Chris is responsible for overseeing the operations for the company, from banking to insurance to bidding, but you could also find him at the controls of a crane or an excavator. John's focus is on the commercial side of the business, primarily in the Lower Cape, and he oversees several water main and sewer projects at a time. Hope continues to work in the main office, in charge of scheduling. The company motto is “Built on Trust.” The Ours believe in the strength of community and realize their local connections and the trust they built from the ground up, as well as a commitment to customer service, are key factors in the business's longevity. Chris and John proudly note there is little turnover in their workforce; many have worked there more than 20 years. Giving back to the community that has supported their business is another driving force for the Ours; and they are involved in philanthropic ventures such The Family Pantry of Cape Cod, Cape Cod Fishermen's Alliance, Cape Cod Baseball League, and Habitat for Humanity of Cape Cod, among others. It's not an easy business, especially with all the facets to Robert B. Our Company these days. “There are a lot of moving parts,” says Chris. “There's the equipment, technology, permitting, dealing with banks and financing. There's managing employees.” The Ours are looking to the next generation, as did their father, to keep the legacy going. “My dad felt he was living the dream; and we're very fortunate what he did for us and we plan to do the same for our children,” says John. “We want to transition to the kids.” The younger generation has benefited the business through their college educations, diversified experience, and knowledge of technology. John hopes they always remember the key to the success of the business: to listen and learn, and adapt to change. “My dad would adjust every day,” he notes. “I can't say enough about our family,” says Chris. “Their hearts are in it and they work hard. They bring knowledge and education to the business.” Written by Carol K. Dumas, Regan Communications Group.

OCTOBER, 2017

Greenheart piles are driven into position, cut to grade, braced and ready for precast concrete pile caps at Plymouth Wharf.

Loading up mulch from Robert B. Our's supply yard in Harwich.

UCANE is proud to count the Robert B. Our Company, Inc. as a long time member of our Association. Our officers, board, and staff would like to wish them a very Happy 60th Anniversary and continued success for many years to come. n

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Taste Test Proves Boston’s Drinking Boston WaterWater and is New England’s Best Sewer Commission Boston Water and Sewer Commission Takes the “Water Cup” at Regional Conference

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oston’s drinking water won New England’s Best Drinking Water taste test Contact: Nicole L. Kieser FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE competition today, and will represent th Email: kiesernl@bwsc.org September 19 , 2017 the region at the national conference held in 2018. The Boston Water and Sewer Commission (BWSC) entered the water into the 8th Taste Proves Boston’s Drinking Water is New England’s Best annual “New Test England’s Best Drinking Water Boston Water and Sewer Commission Taste Test” competition at the New EnglandTakes the “Water Cup” at Regional Conference Water Works Association conference held Boston, Mass. – Boston’s drinking water won New England’s Best Drinking Water taste test this week in Brewster, Massachusetts. competition today, and will represent the region at the national conference held in 2018. The Boston “I’mand very proud of the Boston Water Sewer Commission (BWSC)Water entered the water into the 8th annual “New England’s Best Boston’s drinking which comes and Sewer Commission’s as a water Drinking Water Taste Test” status competition at the New England Water Works water, Association conference held this in Brewster, from the Quabbin and Wachusett Reservoirs, leader in week our region," saidMassachusetts. Mayor Martin J. has won numerous awards for its excellent Walsh. "BWSC has the important task of “I’m very proud of the Boston Water and Sewer Commission’s statusBWSC’s as a water leader in our quality and taste. most recent drinkensuring long-term quality of our water and region," said Mayor Martin J. Walsh. "BWSC has the important task of ensuring long-term quality ing water victory was the 2014 “Best of the of sewer services. Today’s win proves they our water and sewer services. Today’s win proves they perform this task with excellence for the Best” prize from the highly publicized, nation- City perform this task with excellence for the of Boston; providing the best tasting and highest quality water for residents and businesses.” al Tap Water Taste Contest held by American City of Boston; providing the best tasting Water Works Association (AWWA). and highest quality water for residents and “It is an honor to be recognized as the provider of New England’s best drinking water,” said Henry F. businesses.” This year, Boston’s work drinking Vitale, executive director of BWSC. “This is a testament to the top-performing that wewater are doing competed against 10 other samples “It is an honor recognized asour thedrinking water exceeds industry standards.” from on behalf of the Citytoof be Boston to ensure throughout New England. Today’s win now provider of New England’s best drinking waBoston’s which comes director from the Quabbin Wachusett Reservoirs, has against won makesand Boston eligible to compete ter,” said drinking Henry F.water, Vitale, executive numerous awards for its excellent quality and taste. BWSC’s most recent drinking water victory was other cities from across the United States, of BWSC. “This is a testament to the topthe 2014 “Best of the Best” prize from the highly publicized, national Tap Water Taste Contest held Canada, and Mexico at the American Waperforming work that we are doing on behalf bythe American Works Association (AWWA). ter Works Association’s annual conference of City ofWater Boston to ensure our drinking water exceeds industry standards.” scheduled for 2018. n This year, Boston’s drinking water competed against ten other samples from throughout New England. Today’s win now makes Boston eligible to compete against other cities from across the United States, Canada, and Mexico at the American Water Works Association’s annual conference scheduled for 2018.

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BWSC Director Wins Public Service Award

enry F. Vitale, executive director of Boston Water and Sewer Commission (BWSC), recently received the 2017 Shattuck Chairman’s Award at an event at the Seaport Hotel in Boston. This honor is conferred upon a L. cityKieser department head demonstrating ontact: Nicole leadership and exceptional dedication to Bosmail: kiesernl@bwsc.org ton. While Shattuck Awards are given to a select number of outstanding City of Boston employees annually, Mr. Vitale is the first department head to be honored in 12 years. Shattuck Awards are granted by the Boston Municipal Research Bureau, an independent, egional non-partisan Conference agency dedicated to promoting effective public policy. According to Bureau President Samuel Tyler, Shattuck award recipients Water taste test not only do their job but also “do it exceptionally well.” The Boston eld in 2018. “The Shattuck “New England’s BestAwards represent those who epitomize public service. I am proud Boston’s ssociation conference own Henry Vitale has been chosen to be recognized with this honor,” said Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh. “Henry cares deeply about our City, and I thank him for his tireless work to improve ater leader in our the lives of all Boston residents.” ing long-term quality “Henry Vitale isofone of the City’s best leaders and he serves Boston with great pride,” notes h excellence for the City BWSC Board Chairman Michael Woodall. “His and businesses.” dedication to the community is admirable, and we are thrilled the Research Bureau recognizes his hard work and accomplishments.” ng water,” said Henry F. Henry F. Vitale was appointed Executive Dig work that are doing rectorwe of the Boston Water and Sewer Commisy standards.” sion in January 2013. Prior to his appointment, he had since 1995 served as the Commission’s Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer as well as ervoirs, the hasCommission’s won Controller. Mr. Vitale leads BWSC with his focus nking water victory was and attention on the sys90,000 ratepayers, and has made custer Tastetem’s Contest held tomer satisfaction the agency’s top priority. Nationally, the Commission has earned high regard and respect as a model public utility. Under Mr. Vitale’s tenure as executive dithroughout New rector, the Commission has received numerous

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UCANE’s September Dinner Meeting Highlights Wynn Boston Harbor Project

Peter Campot Director of Construction Wynn Boston Harbor

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hen it comes to construction projects in Massachusetts, many UCANE members have seen it all over the years and it takes something special to get and hold their interest. That something special was on display at UCANE’s September Dinner Meeting, sponsored by C. N. Wood Company, Inc., at the Four Points Sheraton Hotel in Norwood, MA. Wynn Development’s Director of Construction, Peter Campot, awed the audience of over 200 with facts, figures, and photos of the ongoing Wynn Casino project in Everett, MA. With an estimated price tag of $2.4 billion, the project is the most expensive single project ever built in Massachusetts’ history, and is privately financed by casino mogul, Steve Wynn. Work on the cramped and contaminated 33-acre site along the Mystic River began in September of 2015 and is on schedule for completion and a grand opening in June of 2019. After being issued a gaming license by the State Gaming Commission in 2014, Wynn selected local talent for the most critical project components. Suffolk Construction of Boston was chosen as the General Contractor. As the largest contractor in the Boston area, John Fish’s company has a long history of satisfying both public and private clients on large and complex projects. Peter Campot of Topsfield, former owner and CEO of William A. Berry and Sons Construction of Danvers, was

OCTOBER, 2017

lured out of retirement by Wynn to take over the challenging role as Director of Construction. Peter was well known in the Boston construction community for his former company’s great successes. He is also considered one of the foremost experts in Virtual Design and Construction, Building Information Modeling, and other technological tools that have moved into the construction arena and would be critical elements in the Wynn Development project. Peter explained to the audience that his wife was at first not entirely thrilled about him going back to work again, but she eventually conceded. “This is a once-in-alifetime opportunity,” Peter explained. “It is truly a unique project and the size, scope, time frame, and logistics were extremely challenging but at the same time enticing to me. I had to be a part of it.” Peter’s excitement and energy about the project was quite evident as he recreated many of the early construction phases during his presentation and brought the audience up to date on the current project status with photos taken earlier in the day. Peter thanked the UCANE members that participated on portions of the work including Albanese Brothers, Inc., Dagle Electric Construction Corp., and particularly J. Derenzo Co. who tackled the difficult site package. Peter described the efforts to grid off the entire contaminated site, segregate the soils into 10 categories, and document continued on page 47

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Dinner Meeting continued from page 45

Wynn Boston Harbor by the Numbers Total Investment by Wynn Development $2.4 Billion Projected Hard Costs for Construction $1.5 Billion Estimated Annual Addition to Mass. Economy $660,000,000 MBE/WBE Contract Awards Through July 2017 $157,000,000 Value of Popeye Statue at the Grand Entrance $28,000,000 Projected Construction Manhours 10,000,000 Tons of Soil Moved Off Site 600,000 each of the 600,000 tons of materials that were excavated and moved off site, mostly by rail. “Derenzo did this work in just 8 months. Despite weather challenges, disposal site challenges, and everything else thrown at them on this tiny site, they kept performing and were instrumental to our project staying on schedule,” said Campot. Peter also announced that three of the four off-site road remediation projects (approximate value $50 million) were awarded this week. The selected contractors were D. W. White Construction, Inc., SPS New England, Inc., and J. Derenzo Co. – all UCANE members. As Director of Construction, Peter explained that there are over 50 project managers, handling various components of the project, that report to him. Being off schedule is not one of the options that the managers have when discussing their progress with him. “Like every other aspect of this project, we looked for quality sub-contractors that had capacity to perform, over pricing. There is no allowance for missing schedules and at this time we are actually about 30 days ahead of schedule,” Peter reported. “We are confident that we will meet the opening date that Mr. Wynn wants.” About 150,000 out of the projected 200,000 cubic yards of concrete have already been poured and the 24-story building frame is rising at the rate of almost a floor a week. There are 1,200-1,500 construction workers who continued on page 49

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Cubic Yards of Concrete Delivered to Site 200,000 Square Feet of Building Area 3,000,000 Estimated New Permanent Jobs Created 4,000 Capacity of Underground Parking Garage 3,000 Gaming Machines 3,000 Total Height of the Hotel 386 feet Number of Guest Rooms 279 Grand Opening Target Date 6/30/19

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Dinner Meeting continued from page 47 are working at the site every day. We are putting into place between $2 million and $3 million worth of hard construction per day,” according to Peter. Statistics such as these are rare not only in Boston, but the entire country, and evoked a lively Q&A session after the presentation. The five star luxury hotel will be a marked improvement over the old abandoned Monsanto plant that was a blight on the Everett landscape. Suffolk cleaned and planted portions of the Mystic River and dredged nearly 40,000 cubic yards of contaminated sediment as part of the project. The finished project will see 14 acres of manicured park lands open to the

public, a river walk along the Mystic, and a water taxi operation to and from downtown Boston. “The appointments inside the hotel will be spectacular,” said Campot. “With the largest hotel rooms in the area, 13 restaurants, and ballrooms with capacities up to 3,000 people, this will be a fabulous resort destination for those visiting Boston and for locals as well.”

UCANE thanks Peter Campot and the Wynn Development team for taking time from their busy schedule to attend our dinner meeting and for providing a most fascinating look at this historic project, which is sure to become a Boston landmark. n

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Brian MacFee, Systems Support Corporation

Equifax Announced the Largest Data Breach in History On September 7, credit reporting agency Equifax announced the largest data breach in history, and it probably involves you. It revealed that cybercriminals had gained access to the personal information of as many as 148 Million Americans between May and July - about 44% of the U.S. population.

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f you applied for a credit line, or terms on some equipment, or even a new credit card in the past few years, Equifax likely has some information stored about you, likely including your social security number, and it would be safe to assume this information was compromised. Most credit card companies will refund or rescind the charges made by someone else on your credit card, but not so on a debit card. The BIG danger is if the thieves get your social security number, which they can use to establish themselves as you – this is what identity theft is – and can result in a long, expensive, and generally nasty legal battle. How can you find out if you were affected? Visit equifaxsecurity2017.com, the website Equifax just created for consumers. There, you can enter your last name and the last six digits of your Social Security number to find out if you may be affected. In the fine print it says you are waiving your rights to a class action suit, but many attorneys have already commented that this is unenforceable. Equifax is providing all consumers access to equifaxsecurity2017.com to enroll in an identity theft protection product, TrustedID Premier. This program will provide you with free credit monitoring for a year. How should you respond? Beyond simply taking Equifax up on its offer of one year of identity theft insurance and free credit monitoring, you should take other steps.

OCTOBER, 2017

Check your credit reports now. (Unless you have already done so in the past month). You can get one free credit report per year from Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. To request yours, go to annualcreditreport.com. Scrutinize your credit card and bank account statements for unfamiliar activity, and sign up for email or text alerts offered by your bank or credit card issuer(s), so that notice of anything suspicious can quickly reach you. Change the password for your main email account. A weak password on that account is a low bar for a cybercrook to hurdle - and once hurdled, that crook could potentially pose as you to change the passwords on your financial accounts. Regarding bank, investment, and credit card accontinued on page 53

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Technology in Const. continued from page 51 count passwords, avoid the obvious ones. Too many people use simple passwords based on their pet's Crushed Stone & State Specified Dense Graded Base name, their last name and year of birth, the high Manufacturer & Installer of Bituminous Concrete Products: school they attended, etc. Sadly, these same simple facts are often answers to security questions for credit M.B.S. Construction Services/Paving card and bank accounts. Ask your bank or credit card Holden Trap Rock Co. Berlin Stone Co. issuer if you can use additional, random words, or a 2077 N. Main Street 332 Sawyer Hill Rd. PIN for passwords or security question answers. That (Route 122 A) (off Rt. 62 & 495) Holden, MA 01520 Berlin, MA 01503 way, you can avoid logging in using data that is in Tel: 508-829-5353 Tel: 978-838-9999 the public record. You want your password to be long 978-838-9916 Burke Wicked HD 4.625 xFax: 7.5508-829-9346 9-16:Dennis K. Burke Fax: 10/24/16 2:18 PM and random, to make it harder for a would-be thief to guess. Consider paying for additional identity theft protection for years to come. If ever an ounce of protection was worth a pound of cure, this is one way to try and shield yourself from the unauthorized use of your Social Security number, driver's license number, email accounts, and credit card numbers. Lifelock (lifelock.com) is a popular service that provides this protection. If someone calls you out of the blue claiming to be from Equifax, do not cooperate with them. Unless Equifax is returning your call, they will not contact you by phone. The same applies if you get a random, unsolicited email or text from "Equifax" - do not comply, or you may Just behind the Green inadvertently hand over personal Monster in Fenway Park, information to a fraudster. Stay vigiBostonʼs iconic CITGO Some days, it’s just one tough sign has become a welllant, today and in the future. job after another. That’s why know and beloved local CITGO produces an extensive Don’t put this off. We all landmark, partly due to its appearances in the have seen these breach notices line of heavy-duty lubricants. backgound of televised in the past, but this one very likely Dennis K. Burke offers a great Red Sox games. involved you and you need to take line of CITGO Heavy-Duty The original sign was action now. Thieves may hold on erected in 1965, and On-Road and Off-Road Lubrito this information for years, waitilluminated with miles of cants, including Engine Oils, glass neon tubes. The ing for the right time. Transmission Fluids, Hydraulic current sign is lighted We will likely see more notices with more durable, energy Fluids, Greases, Gear Oils and efficient LEDs. and breaches like this in the future, Industrial Lubricants. but the “fixes” will be the same as we have described in this article. The good news is these steps will GREATLY reduce your chances of getting your identity stolen.

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Article provided by Eastern Insurance Group, LLC’s “Client Resource Center” powered by Zywave.

John Berksza

Eastern Insurance Group, LLC

Managing a Bilingual Workforce When managing a bilingual workforce, finding ways to ensure proper communication is critical to maintaining a productive and safe workplace. Language and cultural barriers that emerge in a bilingual workforce can contribute to miscommunication and on-the-job accidents and injuries. Because employees that do not speak English generally hesitate to ask for help when they do not understand, it is essential to have the necessary resources available to communicate information.

Offering Orientation Orientation should be offered in the worker’s native language, if possible. Bilingual trainers in human resources or senior positions can serve a dual role; acting as translators at orientation, and workplace presentations and safety meetings throughout the year.

Language and Workplace Injuries To promote worker safety, you should post signage and communication materials in the language in which your employees are fluent. For Spanish language compliance assistance, OSHA offers a variety of free, health and safety materials at: http://www. osha.gov/dcsp/compliance_assistance/index_hispanic.html In addition to printed safety materials, provide information about wages, medical insurance and employee policies. It is beneficial to first evaluate employees’ level of education, job duties and common injuries, as well as culture and background, and then adapt your safety programs and communications materials accordingly. Consider professional translation of your materials. If you have Spanish speaking employees, ensure

OCTOBER, 2017

the materials are translated into the most prominent dialect, and ask a native speaker to review the material for accuracy before distributing companywide. The standard translation fee ranges from $10 to $20 per page, but is well worth the expense when weighed against the risk of workplace accidents due to poor communication or understanding.

On-Site Education To develop and retain skilled workers, you may want to consider offering on-site language classes to help your workers build communication skills. continued on page 56

Language and cultural barriers that emerge in a bilingual workforce can contribute to on-the-job accidents and injuries. Take steps to ensure proper training and communication with employees that do not speak English.

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Safety Corner continued from page 55 Offering learning opportunities at work is convenient for the worker and encourages learning in a team environment.

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Products and Services for Safe Fluid Handling Western Massachusetts McGill Hose & Coupling, Inc. 41 Benton Drive, P.O. Box 408 East Longmeadow, MA 01028 Toll-Free: 800-669-1467 Tel: 413-525-3977 • Fax: 413-525-3175 Email: sales@mcgillhose.com

Eastern Massachusetts Industrial Equipment Supply, div. of McGill Hose & Coupling, Inc. 35 Industrial Parkway, Unit F Woburn, MA 01801 Toll-Free: 800-346-9391 Tel: 781-933-3300 • Fax: 781-933-3320 Email: info@IEShose.com

www.mcgillhose.com

Rhode Island McGill Hose & Coupling, Inc. 920 Broadway East Providence, RI 02914 Toll-Free: 800-669-1467 Tel: 401-438-0639 • Fax: 401-438-4682 Email: sales@mcgillhose.com

We accept all major credit cards.

www.mcgillhose.com www.mcgillhose.com 56

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“We’ve joined Champions Circle, now it’s your turn!” – UCANE

OCTOBER, 2017

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Custom and Standard Concrete Products... Our Specialty! United Concrete Products, Inc.

173 Church St. Yalesville, CT 06492

www.unitedconcrete.com

Offering a full range of products: Manholes, Catch Basins, Septic Tanks, Leaching Chambers, Dry Wells, Distribution Boxes, Pump Chambers, Grease Traps, PreTreatment Tanks, Utility Vaults, Meter Pits, Yard Drains, Box Culverts, End-Walls, Wing Walls, Curbs, Water Quality Structures, Prefab. Pump Stations, Storage Buildings, Dugouts, Concrete Barriers, Cable Concrete, Retaining Walls, Restroom Buildings, Telecommunication Shelters, Prestress Bridges, National Grid, Traffic Control Structures and many more.

Toll Free: (800) 234-3119 Fax: (203) 265-4941

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plainville, Ma (774)847-9046

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For all your construction supply needs l Soil Stabilization l Slope Protection & Erosion Control l Gabions l Pavement Maintenance

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Schmidt Equipment, Inc. Opens New Facility UCANE member Schmidt Equipment, Inc. brought in a large crowd at a recent open house to officially welcome customers and colleagues to their new facility at 4 Sterling Road in North Billerica.

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ccording to Schmidt Equipment President Dennis Neslusan, “After more than 20 years in our previous location on Republic Road in Billerica, we had seriously outgrown the facility. Coupled with the addition of the Wirtgen Group product lines, we really needed more space…more space for Equipment display, more and much larger repair facilities, and more space for our parts warehouse. Business has been growing and Schmidt needed more capacity to better serve our customers throughout eastern Massachusetts and surrounding areas.” After an extensive search, Schmidt found an appropriate piece of land, in the same industrial park where they had been located, and acquired it in early 2015. The balance of 2015 was devoted to the planning, design, and town approval processes. Site preparation began in early 2016. Their steel erector installed the approximately 19,000 square foot building in late 2016, and a number of subcontractors handled the fit up and mechanicals for

OCTOBER, 2017

the 11,000 square foot service shop area, 4,000 square foot parts warehouse, and 4,000 square foot office area. Compared to the previous location, Schmidt has more than tripled their capacity in all areas. With eight oversized shop bays, and two 10-ton overhead cranes, an oversized wash bay, and other specialized resources, they are now able to service much larger “Production Class” Excavators, Loaders, and Dozers from John Deere and Hitachi. In addition, their largest Wirtgen milling and recycling machines easily fit in the service area, along with Vogele pavers, Hamm compaction rollers, and Kleemann crushing and screening equipment.

UCANE would like to congratulate Schmidt Equipment, Inc. on the opening of their new facility and wish them the best of luck in the future. n

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This year’s Safety Manual includes updated information on: • OSHA’s Final Rule on Silica Exposure Limits • OSHA’s Final Rule on Confined Space in Construction • OSHA’s Crane & Derrick Standards (1926.47) • State & Federal Posting Requirements • OSHA’s Updated Trenching & Excavation Safety • OSHA 10-Hour Training Requirements

• • • • • •

OSHA Inspectors Will Be Enforcing: Overall Construction Safety (29 CFR 1926) Excavating Standards Written Safety and Health Plans Hazard Communications Programs Drug Free Workplace OSHA 10-Hour Training Requirements

Your Company Name & Logo printed on the cover. Employee signature cards, verifying compliance with safety manual procedures, are included. When signed, these cards should be placed in each employee’s file. Employee Pocket Safety Manuals are available to UCANE members only.

FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO PLACE ORDER CONTACT THE UCANE OFFICE AT (617) 471-9955.

Don’t dig yourself into trouble... The Perfect Excavation: • Pre-mark the location of intended excavation using white stakes, paint or flags. • In MA, ME, NH and RI, notify Dig Safe® at least 72 hours in advance - not including weekends and holidays. • In Vermont, notify Dig Safe® at least 48 hours in advance - not including weekends and holidays. • Notify non-member facility owners. • Maintain the marks placed by underground facility owners.

Call

• Use caution and dig by hand when working within 18” of a marked facility. • If a line is damaged, do not backfill. Notify the affected utility company immediately if the facility, its protective coating, or a tracer wire is damaged. • Call 911 if the damaged facility poses a risk to public safety. • Know your state’s excavation requirements. Go to digsafe.com for educational material and current laws.

before you dig. digsafe.com

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OCTOBER, 2017


Years of Excellence 1954-2017

Charles River Insurance Brokerage dba Foster Insurance

R. Kadesh Excavation LLC

321 Lunenburg Street Fitchburg, MA 01420 Rep: Ryan Logan Tel: (978) 343-6946 Fax: (978) 345-2514 Email: rlogan@fosterinsurance.com ASSOCIATE

200 Norfolk Street Walpole, MA 02081 Rep: Richie Kadesh Tel: (781) 858-6430 Fax: (508) 921-3133 Email: rkcat966f@aol.com Website: www.rkadeshexcavation.com CONTRACTOR

Equipment East, LLC

A. D. Paolini, LLC

Jones Contracting, Inc.

The Zanelli Enterprise, Inc.

61 Silva Lane Dracut, MA 01826 Rep: Gilda/Giovanni Albanese Tel: (978) 454-3320 Fax: (978) 454-3325 Email: giovanni@equipmenteast.com Website: www.equipmenteast.com ASSOCIATE 735 Washington Street Walpole, MA 02081 Rep: Russell E. Jones Jr. Tel: (508) 668-7888 Fax: (508) 668-7880 Email: russelljr@jonescontracting.com Website: www.jonescontracting.com CONTRACTOR

50 Smith Avenue Newton, MA 02465 Rep: Bob Keefe Tel: (617) 454-4277 Fax: (617) 916-0441 Email: robert@adpaolini.com Website: www.adpaolinima.com CONTRACTOR 299 Main Street N. Reading, MA 01864 Rep: Randi DeLoreto Tel: (978) 207-1233 Fax: (978) 207-1649 Email: zanellienterpriseinc@gmail.com Website: www.zanellient.net CONTRACTOR

Kenworth Northeast, Boston 1150 West Chestnut St Brockton, MA 02301 (781) 341-0008 Www.Kenworthne.com Providing the services our customers deserve; Delivering the satisfaction they expect OCTOBER, 2017

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PLANT LOCATION:

200 LEGACY BLVD. DEDHAM, MA 02026 Plant: 617-590-0024

MATERIALS AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE: • 1” MINUS PROCESSED GRAVEL • ¾” & 1½” CRUSHED STONE • SCREENED LOAM • SCREENED SAND MATERIALS ACCEPTED: • BROKEN ASPHALT • NON & REINFORCED CONCRETE • CONCRETE WITH WIRE MESH • ROCK • BLASTED LEDGE

OFFICE:

1039 EAST STREET DEDHAM, MA 02026 Office: 781-329-4111 Fax: 781-329-1039

HOURS OF OPERATION: MONDAY-FRIDAY: 6:30 A.M. – 4:00 P.M. SATURDAY: 7:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M.

DELIVERIES AVAILABLE ON LARGE ORDERS. PLEASE CALL FOR PRICING.

Asphalt Paving • Excavating / Site Development Hot Mix Asphalt / Cold Patch Lawrence-Lynch Corp.

White Bros. – Lynch Corp.

P.O. Box 913 • Falmouth, MA 02541

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396 Gifford Street • Falmouth, MA 02540

20 Vineyard Ave. • Oak Bluffs, MA 02557

PH 508-548-1800

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PH 508-693-0845 FX 509-693-0312

Visit our website @ www.lawrencelynch.com

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Greg Norris, B2W Software

Driving Profitability with a Field-Centric Approach to Cost Management Utility construction costs occur in the field. That’s where collaboration and insight can help contractors control them. The problem is, many contractors continue to rely primarily on financial or ERP systems to tell them how they are performing versus plan. Now, operational software and mobile capabilities are paving the way for a more effective fieldcentric approach.

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s margins get tighter, and projects get larger and more complex, status-quo cost management methods can no longer cut it when it comes to staying on budget and on schedule. Lag time in viewing daily data on labor, productivity, materials, and equipment utilization prevents managers and executives from making timely, data-driven decisions to adjust operations in the field and protect profitability. Accounting systems are also limited when it comes to giving teams responsible for managing projects in the field a clear understanding of the overall performance expectations or an accurate picture of where they stand versus the plan/budget on a day-to-day basis. Disconnected operational processes based on paper, whiteboards, phone calls, or software applications that don’t talk to each other compound the challenges. They prevent the field, maintenance and scheduling/dispatching teams from working cohesively to deploy crews, equipment, and materials in the most cost-effective manner.

A Field-Centric Alternative A software platform for estimating and operations doesn’t replace financial accounting or ERP systems – it complements them. These are the most critical ingredients for effective field-centric cost management:

OCTOBER, 2017

Seamless data transfer between the bid and the field log. Unified software applications for estimating and performance tracking allow bid data to be translated and transferred directly to the field log. Eliminating the need to manually interpret and re-key the data eliminates ambiguity and errors. As they are setting up and planning a new job, superintendents, project managers, and foremen know exactly what the scheduling and budget expectations are. Conversely, contractors benefit when data on actual costs incurred in the field travels back to the estimating workflow automatically to improve the accuracy of future estimating, budgeting, planning, and scheduling. continued on page 64

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Software Solutions continued from page 63 Collaboration across workflows. The three operational workflows with the biggest impact on job costs in the field are scheduling/dispatching, performance tracking, and equipment management. When specialized software applications used to manage these workflows are unified and use a single, shared operational database, data flows freely. Employees can collaborate and work more efficiently to keep projects on schedule and on budget. Daily field performance tracking. Many heavy construction contractors rely on a performance tracking process involving field logs and time cards (usually paper) compiled weekly and delivered to the office. That data on labor, equipment, and material costs is then re-keyed manually into an accounting system in order to produce reports. The problem is, those reports reflect what happened one to two weeks ago. By then, it may be too late to correct or recover from factors pushing a project off schedule or over budget. Alternatively, electronic field logs and performance tracking software allow management to take a field-centric rather than an accounting-centric approach. Data entered into the electronic log is vis-

ible in real time. Managers can generate reports and evaluate costs on a daily basis, allowing them to react faster and make informed adjustments to field operations. Bypassing the accounting system and communicating progress daily also provides practical and motivational advantages for the field team. They know where they stand versus the budget and what they need to do on a day-to-day basis to keep projects on target. Mobile technology to empower the field team. Mobile technology continues to revolutionize heavy construction and it’s pivotal to field-centric cost management. Step one is the electronic field log. Equipped with tablets, employees can capture field performance data where and when it happens and communicate it in real time. That increases the accuracy, quality, and timeliness of the data. Mobile continued on page 65

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Software Solutions continued from page 64 devices can also provide the field team with easier access to vital information. Everything they need to work more efficiently and make better, data-driven decisions – from the latest forms and documents to business intelligence reports and dashboards – is literally at their fingertips. Financial accounting and ERP systems are great for their designated purposes. Frustration for contractors stems from the fact that these solutions are not built with the field in mind. They fall short for tracking and controlling costs at the operational level – the critical point where insight into project progress; and can enable data-driven adjustments to drive profitability.

The promise of an all-in-one solution for accounting, estimating, and operations also remains unfulfilled. One system simply can’t do it all and still deliver the logic, features, and functionality needed by financial executives in the office and employees in the field. n

Serving the Bonding and Insurance needs of the N.E. construction industry for over 40 years.

Adam DeSanctis Gregory Juwa James Axon Michael Carney Wilder Parks Michael Gilbert Bryan Juwa David Boutiette Paul Patalano Dick Caruso Jonathan Duggan Jordan Tirone

OCTOBER, 2017

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Whether you’re gearing up for a new project or selling machines from your fleet, count on Ritchie Bros. We’re the world’s largest industrial auctioneer for one reason—we do auctions right. ▸ Every item sells to the highest bidder on auction day ▸ Secure yards for buyer inspections ▸ Hassle-free, all-inclusive service for sellers ▸ Both on-site and online bidding ▸ Financing, shipping, refurb and other services

Talk to me about selling at our next Manchester auction: July 26

Auctions done right since 1958.

Jason Kirkconnell Josh Knott Regional Sales Manager Regional Sales Manager 508-294-6579 1.617.512.7916 jkirkconnell@rbaucion.com jknott@rbauction.com

rbauction.com/Manchester

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Ferguson offers a complete line of products to cover all your water, sewer and storm water management needs, and our relationships with the waterworks industry’s top vendors give our customers peace of mind through unmatched customer service, on-time delivery, and industry leading fill rates.

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OCTOBER, 2017


John E. Merchant, CPA IN THIS ISSUE

Cullen, Murphy & Co., P.C.

• Prepare Your Kids for Financial Independence • New IRS Ruling May Rescue Estate Plans • Tax Court Approves 100% Business Meal Deduction

Smart Tax, Business & Planning Ideas

Prepare Your Kids for Financ Prepare Your Kids Independence for Financial

Independence

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n AICPA survey discovered that parents are more likely to talk with their children about manners, eating habits, school grades, and substance abuse than about finances. All these topics are important, but it’s also vital to teach your kids the basics of handling money. This conversation can begin when children are very young—even before they start kindergarten. One tactic is to give each child a piggy bank, which might hold spare change and even dollar bills. Once the children reach the age when they start learning counting skills, you can explain how five pennies make a nickel, two nickels make a dime, and so on, until you have dollars that can buy things in a store. Parents also can open up bank accounts for youngsters; banks may have low or no minimums for children’s savings accounts. Parents can take their kids to the bank to make deposits and show them the results on bank statements. If the child’s account earns interest, that can offer another teaching opportunity. Personal Finance At some point, children may receive an allow-

OCTOBER, 2017

Parents also c for youngsters; b minimums for ch Parents can take make deposits an on bank stateme earns interest, th teaching opportu

Personal fina

At some point, c allowance, earn m chores, or both. P ance, earn money for doing household chores, choices or they’ll th both. An Parents might explain the choices they’ll then AICPA survey discovered that parents to spend the mon face. Do they want to spend the money on something are more likely to talk with their children want right away, they want right away, put the money in their piggy about manners, eating habits, school grades, piggy bank to sav bank to save for a larger purchase, or put it in the and substance abuse than about finances. or put it in the re regular bank for a long-term goal? Yet another posAll these topics are important, but it’ s term goal? Yet an sibility is to give some of their income to those who alsofortunate. vital to teach your kidssuch the basics of some of their inc are less Altogether, an exercise can give your kids the idea that there are many options less for fortunate. A handling money. handlingThis money, and theycan should conversation beginconsider when the altercan give your kid natives carefully. children are very young—even before they many options fo Taking your child with you when you go to the start kindergarten. One tactic is to give should consider supermarket, or hardware store each childpharmacy, a piggy bank, which might holdcan alsoTaking your c be anspare educational Children change andexperience. even dollar bills. Once can see to the supermark goods that are available at different prices; for examthe children reach the age when they start store can also be ple, buying a larger package often will require more learning skills, canhandling explain finances Children can see money. Again,counting kids can seeyou that how five pennies make a nickel, two nickels different prices; f nvolves making decisions. Even at a young age, chilmake a dime, and so on, until you have package often wi dren might be allowed to pick out one cereal from the dollars that can buy things in a store. Again, kids can s rest or one type of treat for the family pet. continued on page 69

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Untitled-6 1

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Successful projects start with reliable, high quality materials At Aggregate Industries, our experienced and dedicated employees work hard to deliver unsurpassed value to our customers and communities. We are committed to providing you the expertise and quality materials required to ensure your projects are successful. - Asphalt - Ready Mixed Concrete - Aggregates - Recycled Products - Soil Remediation

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For more information please contact the Aggregate Industries Northeast Region Office at (781) 941-7200. www.aggregate-us.com

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Financial Management continued from page 67 As children grow older, their desired items likely will become more expensive (such as an electronic device or an article of clothing). Through online, catalog, or in-store shopping, you can show them the price of the thing they’ve requested and explain that this is so many weeks of allowance or hours of household chores. You might set up a plan to save for this outlay, with a parental match as an incentive. One worthwhile activity is to have your child keep a record of all the things he or she would like to have. The child can then organize those items based on “need” or “want.” New shoes might be needed, for instance, but a smartphone might Aon Risk Solutions be wanted. From this list, you could lead into a discussion of what’s needed versus what’s wanted for you as a parent. Milk and juice from the supermarket might fall into the needed category, but a new car every year may be wanted yet not necessary. Explain that it’s fine to have things you want, but you may have to save for them over a time and forgo other items on the want list. With preteens and teens, other topics can be discussed. You might show your child your checkbook, for example, and describe how you balance it every month. As they approach college, it’s time to talk about college costs at various schools and the results of using student loans to pay for higher education. When children get their first credit card, they should be told how credit scores are calculated and the importance of maintaining a good record of debt repayment.

ed by showing a pay stub to your son or daughter. Federal income tax will be withheld, usually along with state and local income tax. The same pay stub may also reveal payroll taxes withheld, such as those for Social Security and Medicare. (Eventually, a discussion of payroll taxes can lead to conversations about retirement planning and health insurance.) The key here is to make your children aware that a first job that pays $3,000 a month won’t provide $3,000 to spend every month. Only what’s left after taxes can be spent, with needs coming before wants. continued on page 71

Construction Services Group

Managing Risk Takes More Than Machinery As the leading provider of risk solutions to the construction industry, Aon Construction Services Group partners with clients to provide insighful analysis, strategic direction and creative solutions backed by our dedicated team of construction experts and the strength of Aon’s global network. Let Aon Construction Services Group empower your growth, profit and continuity. aon.com/construction Kevin White, CEO 617.457.7717 Kevin.White@aon.com

Brian Driscoll, Managing Director 617.457.7668 brian.driscoll@aon.com

Paul Healy, National Contract Surety 617.457.7719 paul.healy@aon.com

Mark Herendeen, Surety 617.457.7715 mark.herendeen@aon.com

Michael Scott, Insurance 617.457.7699

Mark Toglia, Wrap-Up 617.457.7727 mark.toglia@aon.com

Talking Taxes Preparing children for financial independence also means preparing them to be taxpayers. Some taxes are very visible; if you live in an area with a 5% sales tax, for instance, a $10 purchase winds up costing $10.50.

Risk. Reinsurance. Human Resources.

Other taxes might be illustrat-

OCTOBER, 2017

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Financial Management continued from page 69

P

New IRS Ruling May Rescue Estate Plans

resident Trump’s campaign promise to abolish the federal estate tax may or may not be realized. Meanwhile, the “death tax” still exists, and it continues to be a major concern for high networth taxpayers, including the owners of successful small companies. If a deceased taxpayer has a surviving spouse, the estate of the deceased spouse may make a portability election. If this election is made, the unused federal estate tax exclusion of the deceased spouse (called the deceased spouse unused exclusion, or DSUE) can be carried over to and used by the surviving spouse. The executor of the deceased spouse’s estate must make the portability election on a timely filed estate tax return that includes a computation of the DSUE.

Doubling the Exemption The federal estate tax exemption has gradually increased from $5 million to $5.49 million in recent years. Thus, many estates have not owed this tax, and many executors have not filed a Form 706 federal estate tax return. Example 1: Jim Cook died in 2012 when the estate tax exemption was $5.12 million. His estate was worth $4 million, all of which he left to his wife, Marie. Therefore, his executor was not required to file Form 706 and did not do so. That could have been an error. Jim’s estate did not use any of that year’s estate tax exemption. By filing a Form 706, his executor could have elected portability of his DSUE. If the election had been made, Jim’s widow Marie’s estate could have used Jim’s DSUE in addition to her own at her death. Example 2: Assume Marie dies in 2017 with a total of $8 million, including the assets inherited from continued on page 73

IRS Revenue Procedure 2017-34, effective June 9, 2017, provides relief when a deceased spouse’s executor fails to make a timely portability election. The revenue procedure sets out a simplified method for requesting an extension of time to executors of certain estates of decedents Water Works Specialist who died after 2010 to make the Water Works Specialist Tel:781-878-8098 Fax:781-878-5298 election.

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Financial Management continued from page 71 Jim. Her estate would be over the $5.49 million estate tax exemption this year by $2.51 million. At a 40% estate tax rate, Marie’s estate would owe over $1 million to the IRS. Now suppose that Jim’s executor had elected portability on Form 706. Because Jim had left all of his assets to Marie, his entire $5.12 million DSUE would be added to Marie’s $5.49 million exemption, for a total of $10.61 million. Marie’s $8 million estate would be under that threshold, and no federal estate tax would be due.

Filing the Form To obtain relief under Rev. Proc. 2017- 34 from the Bostonelection, Area failure to make a portability all the executor Locations must do is file a complete and properly prepared Form 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

706 estate tax return on or before the later of January 2, 2018, or two years from the decedent’s date of death. On this return, the executor should explain that it is being “filed pursuant to Rev. Proc. 2017-34 to elect portability under § 2010(c)(5)(a).” If these requirements are met, the extension of time to elect portability will be granted, and the Form 706 electing portability will be considered to have been timely filed. As previously noted, the IRS is providing this relief retroactively to estates of decedents who died after 2010, which have until next January 2 to obtain relief under Rev. Proc. 2017-34. Estates of decedents who died after January 2, 2016, have two years from the date of death. If the decedent’s surviving spouse has died, and the surviving spouse’s estate has already filed Form 706 and paid estate tax on which the statute of limitation on refund has not expired, the executor of that estate can file an amended Form 706, including the decedent’s DSUE, and get any resulting refund.

Good News for Business Owners

Rev. Proc. 2017-34 can benefit the estates of all wealthy de431 Second Street 431 Second Street cedents, but it may be especially Everett, MA 02149 Everett, MA 02149 valuable for business owners and BOSTON AREA LOCATIONS   their heirs. When the owner of a 2 Dexter Street   431   Second Street business dies, his or her interest Everett, MA 02149 Everett, MA 02149 in the company must be valued. A moderately successful firm can have a value well into seven or even eight figures. Counting the decedent’s other assets, the total can be in estate tax territory. Generally, estate tax must be paid within nine months of death. In some cases, estates of the owners of closely-held companies may Minichiello Bros./Scrap-It, Inc., defer the tax over an extended time Minichiello Bros./Scrap-It, Inc. period. Still, the tax payments may 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, be considerable, and the heirs of buyers, sellers, and processors of scrap metal. Forour overgoal 60 years goal sellers and processors of scrap metal. For over 60 years has our remained business owners may lack the liquid has remained the same to provide the best prices in the industry along with the same - to provide the best prices in the industry along with top notch assets necessary for this obligation. top notch customer service! Call Fred Rogers at 617-595-5505 customer service! Call Fred Rogers at 617-595-5505 Minichiello Bros./Scrap-It, Inc.,   Such concerns might lead Minichiello Bros./Scrap-It, Inc., business owners and others into Serves over 2500 customers a week and is one New England's largest buyers, sophisticated tax planning tacsellers and processors of scrap metal. For overa60week years ourisgoal Serves over 2500 customers and onehas Newremained England's largest buyers, tics to deal with future estate tax. he same - to provide the best in theof industry along with notch sellers and prices processors scrap metal. Fortop over 60 years our goal has remained These tactics may be helpful, for customer service! the Callsame Fred -Rogers at 617-595-5505 to provide the best prices in the industry along with top notch various reasons, but the presence customer service! Call Fred Rogers at 617-595-5505 of portability may reduce the need,   as a married couple now can easily pass on nearly $11 million worth Turn your metal into money today! of assets to the next generation Turn your metal into money today! with portability. Minichiello Bros. Inc./Scrap-It Inc. Minichiello Bros. Inc.,/Scrap-It Inc. continued on page 74  

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Financial Management continued from page 73

Tax Court Approves 100% Business Meal Deduction

M

any business owners, self-employed individuals, and other taxpayers are aware that business meals and entertainment expenses are only 50% deductible. You might treat a key client to a restaurant meal and spend $100. Even if this meal has a definite business purpose (you wind up with an important contract), only $50 will be tax deductible. Nevertheless, some business meals can be fully deductible. The Tax Court recently overruled the IRS in a case regarding the pro hockey team, the Boston Bruins (Jacobs v. Commissioner, 148 T.C. No. 24, 6/26/17). Although the IRS claimed tax deficiencies totaling about $85,000 over two years’ tax returns, the court sided with the team’s owners and allowed 100% deductions for meal costs. Pregame Preparation As is the case with most professional sports teams, the Bruins play half of their games away from home. National Hockey League rules require teams to arrive well in advance, so the Bruins schedule hotel rooms for the players and other traveling employees. These hotel arrangements include the provision of rooms where meals are served, with specified menus, before the games. All traveling employees are entitled to eat meals

there at no personal cost. The players are required to eat there, on time, because considerable game planning occurs at these meals between players and coaches. The Tax Court noted that the meal service was nondiscriminatory, as all traveling hockey employees could attend. Moreover, the meal expenses were associated with the active conduct of the taxpayer’s trade or business: winning hockey games. continued on page 75

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Financial Management continued from page 74 The Bruins Argument The Bruins argued that the meals were 100% deductible, because the costs of the meals were excepted from the 50% meals and entertainment limitation because they were de minimis fringe benefits.

Five Tests The court found that the meals would qualify as de minimis fringe benefits if they were provided in a nondiscriminatory manner and five other tests relating to the meal were met: 1. The eating facility is owned or leased by the employer. 2. The facility is operated by the employer. 3. The facility is located on or near the business premises of the employer. 4. The meals furnished at the facility are provided during, or immediately before or after, the employees’ workday. 5. The revenue or operating cost test is passed. (This last point will be satisfied if the meals are furnished for the employer’s convenience on the employer’s business premises.) The court found that the team furnished the meals in a nondiscriminatory manner because it provided the

meals to all traveling hockey employees. After analyzing the evidence presented, the court decided that the meals met the five tests. Consequently, it held that the costs of the meals was 100% deductible as de minimis fringe benefits not subject to the 50% meals and entertainment limitation in IRC Section 274(n)(2)(B).

Key Takeaways Although professional sports teams operate a very specialized business, the Tax Court’s reasoning in this case may apply to other situations, especially in sports and entertainment industries in which employees are provided meals away from home as part of their work schedule. In addition, this decision can be a reminder that certain meal expenses can be 100% deductible. For example, employers might be entitled to deduct the full cost of food and drink at events primarily for the benefit of rank and file employees. Those occasions could be holiday parties, company outings, banquets, and so on. Also, meals, snacks, and beverages provided to employees at no charge, on or near the firm’s premises for valid business purposes, may be 100% deductible. Your accountant can help you structure employee benefits of this nature so that your business will meet the requirements for full tax advantages. Reprinted from CPA Client Bulletin. n

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

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Advertisers’ Index APJ Equipment Corp..............................................................17 ATS Equipment, Inc. .............................................................28 Acme Shorey Precast Co., Inc...............................................26 Aggregate Industries - N.E. Region.......................................68 Albanese Brothers, Inc............................................................1 American Shoring, Inc........................................ Ins. Back Cvr. Aon Construction Services Group.........................................69 AQUAREHAB USA Inc...........................................................29 Boro Sand & Stone Corp.......................................................56 Brennan Consulting...............................................................68 Dennis K. Burke, Inc..............................................................53 C&S Insurance Agency.........................................................38 Dagle Electrical Construction Corp.........................................2 Darmody, Merlino & Co., LLP................................................41 Dedham Recycled Gravel......................................................62 DeSanctis Insurance Agency, Inc. ........................................65 Dig Safe System, Inc.............................................................60 The Driscoll Agency ..............................................................70 EJ........................................................................................... 11 Eastern Insurance Group, LLC................................................6 Eastern States Insurance Agency, Inc..................................33 Eastpoint Lasers, LLC...........................................................15 T. L. Edwards, Inc.................................................................. 74 Equipment4Rent....................................................................15 Ferguson Waterworks............................................................66 Gorilla Hydraulic Breakers.....................................................68 L. Guerini Group, Inc..............................................................43 HD Supply Const. & Industrial White Cap.............................42 HD Supply Waterworks (Core & Main)....................................4 A. H. Harris Construction Supplies........................................58 Hinckley Allen LLP.................................................................14 John Hoadley & Sons, Inc.....................................................71 JESCO...................................................................................75 Kenworth Northeast...............................................................61 P. A. Landers, Inc...................................................................30 Lawrence-Lynch Corp............................................................62 Lorusso Corp..........................................................................72 Lorusso Heavy Equipment, LLC............................................48 MBO Precast, Inc...................................................................21 Mabey, Inc..............................................................................54 Mass Broken Stone Company...............................................53 McGill Hose & Coupling, Inc..................................................56 Milton CAT..............................................................................12 Minuteman Trucks, Inc...........................................................21 Norfolk Power Equipment, Inc...............................................72 North American Crane & Rigging LLC..................................20 North East Shoring Equipment, LLC.....................................13 Ocean State Oil......................................................................70 Palmer Paving Corp...............................................................54 E. H. Perkins Construction Co., Inc.......................................76 Podgurski Corp......................................................................65 E. J. Prescott, Inc................................................Ins. Front Cvr. Rain For Rent-New England..................................................40 Read Custom Soils ...............................................................29 Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers......................................................66 Rogers & Gray Insurance......................................................16 Schmidt Equipment, Inc............................................. Back Cvr. Scituate Concrete Products Corp..........................................24 Scrap-It, Inc............................................................................73 Shea Concrete Products, Inc. .................................................8 SITECH New England............................................................32 Smith Print..............................................................................70 Starkweather & Shepley Ins. Brokerage, Inc.........................49 Systems Support Corporation.................................................9 Tonry Insurance Group, Inc...................................................72 Travelers.................................................................................22 Triumph Modular....................................................................46 United Concrete Products......................................................58 United Rentals Trench Safety................................................50 Webster One Source.............................................................10 C. N. Wood Co., Inc. .............................................................52 Woodco Machinery, Inc.........................................................18 Xylem Dewatering Solutions Inc............................................64

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