The National Roofing Legal
Resource Center (NRLRC) held its
annual seminar in September; topics included a staggering array
of emerging problems facing the roofing contractor community. For
starters, lightweight structural concrete roof decks, a proposed
Occupational Safety and Health Administration silica regulation and
complying with the Affordable Care Act. During the seminar, I was
struck by two simultaneous thoughts.
First, seminar attendees, which is to say our members, are
smarter than ever. The quality of the discussions and questions was
remarkable and covered a wide range of subject matter.
Second, they're smarter because they have to be. Call it the
theory of roofing evolution. Roofing contractors now must contend
with an unbelievable volume of government regulation, understand a
complicated world of insurance, be tuned into federal and state
legislative initiatives, and be prepared to explain roof system
design to architects and project scheduling to general contractors.
Oh, and in their spare time, they have to know how to apply seven
or eight completely different types of roof systems.
It is tempting at such moments to long for the good old days
when four or five manufacturers of built-up roofing products ruled
the industry and (as we like to remember it) our problems were few
and far between. But as college football coach Bobby Bowden noted,
the good old days weren't so good if you were sitting in...
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