• Sprague with his friend Elizabeth Charpentier at a Red Sox game

OSHA evaluates state-run programs

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced it has concluded a special evaluation of state-run occupational safety and health programs under its jurisdiction. Enhanced Federal Annual Monitoring and Evaluation (EFAME) reports are available for each state and provide detailed findings and recommendations regarding the operations of 25 state-run OSHA programs and territories. The evaluation was initiated after construction-related fatalities in Las Vegas prompted a 2009 OSHA special report on Nevada's program and identified operations deficiencies in the state.

The EFAME reports are available at www.osha.gov/dcsp/osp/efame/index.html. States have 30 days to formally respond with a detailed corrective action plan for addressing findings and recommendations. Each state's response will be available online as soon as it is received.

DOE provides funding for 2009 IECC

Free digital copies of the International Code Council's 2009 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) are available because of funding provided by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The funding is part of DOE's initiative to meet nationwide energy-efficiency goals through its Building Technologies Program and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

According to DOE, the 2009 IECC will produce about 15 percent more in residential energy-efficiency gains compared with the 2006 edition. The goals are to have homes and commercial buildings consume less energy as well as help the environment by reducing emissions and their collective carbon footprint.

Rhode Island adopts green building code

Rhode Island is the first state in the U.S. to adopt the International Green Construction Code (IGCC). The Rhode Island Green Buildings Act identifies IGCC as an equivalent standard in compliance with requirements that all public agency major facility projects be designed and constructed as green buildings. The rules and regulations to implement the act took effect in October.

IGCC applies to new and existing traditional and high-performance commercial buildings. It includes ANSI/ASHRAE/USGBC/IES Standard 189.1, "Standard for the Design of High-Performance, Green Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings," as an alternative compliance requirement.

In August, Richland, Wash., became the first city globally to adopt IGCC as a nonmandatory document for commercial buildings.

ICC Evaluation Service LLC also has announced it is certifying its products and materials to IGCC requirements.

Climate and energy rankings released

The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has released the fourth edition of its ACEEE Scorecard of all 50 U.S. states regarding their approaches to climate and energy issues.

The top 10 states are California, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.

The 10 states with the most room for improvement are Alabama, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, West Virginia and Wyoming. Texas has lost the most ground in the ACEEE rankings, and Alaska, Arizona, New Mexico and Utah are among the most improved.

Winter weather projections announced

The annual Winter Outlook released in October by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center says the Pacific Northwest will have a colder and wetter than average winter while most of the South and Southeast will be warmer and drier than average through February 2011.

La Niña, which is associated with cooler than normal water temperatures in the Equatorial Pacific Ocean, has the potential to bring weather extremes to parts of the U.S.

"La Niña is in place and will strengthen and persist through the winter months, giving us a better understanding of what to expect between December and February," says Mike Halpert, deputy director of the Climate Prediction Center. "This is a good time for people to review the outlook and begin preparing for what winter may have in store."

Halpert also says other factors, such as the North Atlantic Oscillation, are difficult to predict more than two weeks in advance, adding uncertainty to the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic forecasts.


MacDonald Sprague III

What is your position within your company?
I'm chief operating officer of Mac Roofing Inc., Brockton, Mass.

What is the most unusual roofing project you've performed?
We reroofed a 105-square-foot temple roof. There were three layers of roofing material, plywood and insulation and then another layer of roofing material. To top it off, underneath the original roof we found the electrical wiring for the whole building on top of the sheathing. Needless to say, we needed an electrician. We finished the job in two days.

What do you consider your most rewarding experiences?
Starting my own company and building it to where it is now, knowing all along my goal is to never "arrive" but always strive

Why did you become a roofing contractor?
I come from a long line of roofing workers. I am fourth generation. My great-grandfather, Bernard Sprague, started the parent company when he returned from World War I.

What's your favorite book?
The Catcher in the Rye

What is the most high-tech thing in your house?
A combination of my stereo components and speakers—all thanks to my cousin Brian

What do you consider a waste of time?

When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
An astronaut

What is your favorite vacation?
Whitewater rafting down the Colorado River and then camping out on the banks

What is your favorite stress reliever?
It's a toss-up between working on my yard and Ju-jitsu.

What is the most challenging aspect of your job?
The most challenging aspect is knowing the climate and culture of the industry and being unable to change it.

What is your roofing industry involvement?
I am currently on NRCA's board of directors.

People would be surprised to know …
I am a philanthropic green Republican, which some may say is an oxymoron.

Gain trust through persuasion

Managers not only need to be able to give orders, but they also must be persuasive. To achieve results, you must convince employees you know what you're doing. Following are tips to develop persuasive skills:

  • Focus on emotions and facts. Facts are important, but you also need to connect with people emotionally. Show employees what you're talking about is important to them, as well.
  • Take your time. Present your arguments, listen to responses, do more research, meet again, listen again, etc. Employees won't always instantly agree, and trying to get them to do so in one meeting or through a memo rarely works.
  • Compromise. Ask employees for their ideas and input; then, figure out a solution that works for everyone.
  • Don't force your ideas. Employees will resist when forced into something. Instead of pushing your ideas, lay them out and let people come to their own conclusions.

Source: Adapted from The Manager's Intelligence Report, October issue.

SRI added to Rated Products Directory

The Cool Roof Rating Council (CRRC) has announced the addition of the solar reflectance index (SRI) to its Rated Products Directory. SRI measures a roof 's ability to reject solar heat. The SRI value is defined where a standard black membrane (reflectance 0.05, emittance 0.90) is set at zero and a standard white membrane (reflectance 0.80, emittance 0.90) is set at 100.

For more than a decade, CRRC maintained a third party, independent rating system for the radiative values of roofing products. By adding SRI to the Rated Products Directory, users can reference the metric to gauge roofing products' energy performance in addition to posted solar reflectance and thermal emittance values.


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