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Archive for April, 2013

April 14, 2013

Posted by nahetsblog on April 14, 2013

Report: Pascagoula has highest construction job gain in United States
Read more here: http://www.sunherald.com/2013/04/09/4581256/report-pascagoula-has-highest.html#storylink=cpy

Pascagoula tops the list of metropolitan areas where construction employment increased between February 2012 and February 2013, according to a new analysis of federal employment data released Tuesday by the Associated General Contractors of America.

Pascaguola added the highest percentage of new construction jobs with 51 percent or 1,800 jobs, according to the data.

Construction employment increased in 158 out of 339 metropolitan areas during that time frame, declined in 132 and was stagnant in 49.

Pascagoula is followed by El Centro, Calif. (23 percent, 300 jobs); Anchorage, Alaska (22 percent, 1,800 jobs), Fargo, N.D. (20 percent, 1,200 jobs) and Merced, Calif. (20 percent, 300 jobs).

Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, Texas (13,200 jobs, 8 percent) added the most jobs.

Other areas adding a large number of jobs included Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas (10,700 jobs, 10 percent); Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, Calif. (8,500 jobs, 8 percent) and Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas (7,200 jobs, 12 percent).

Association officials noted that the rebound in construction employment in many parts of the country is taking place despite a 17 percent decline in public sector construction spending during the past four years.

Flagler ranked No. 20 in nation for construction job growth

Flagler County last month had the second-best growth in construction employment, percentage-wise, in Florida and tied with three other metro areas for the nation’s 20th best growth, according to a new national report.

In February, an estimated 900 workers were employed in construction-related jobs in the "Palm Coast metro area" — i.e., all of Flagler County — for a year-over-year net gain of 100 jobs, according to data compiled by the state Department of Economic Opportunity.

Flagler’s 13 percent net gain was just barely beat out by the Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach-Deerfield Beach metropolitan area, which recorded a 14 percent increase in February for a No. 17 national ranking, according to a report Tuesday from the Associated General Contractors of America.

Volusia County, despite its year-over-year net gain of 300 construction jobs in February, tied with 17 other U.S. metro areas for the nation’s 98th best growth (seventh best in Florida) because its percentage gain was only 4 percent.

Debi Peterson, executive officer for the Flagler Home Builders Association, said she was pleased Flagler County ranked so high in the Association General Contractors’ list of the nation’s fastest-growing metro areas for construction employment, but said she takes such news with a grain of salt because of the county’s relatively small population.

Flagler has 96,000 residents compared with 497,000 in Volusia, according to the state Department of Economic Opportunity.

"Whenever anything happens (in Flagler), it’s a bigger deal numbers-wise than in Volusia," Peterson said.

She added, however, that several area builders have been reporting an increase in work in recent months.

In the first three months of the year, 89 building permits were issued in Flagler for new homes, up from 50 in the first quarter last year, said Jason DeLorenzo, director of government affairs for the Flagler Home Builders Association.

"It’s looking pretty solid," he said of new home construction activity locally.

Jim Landon, Palm Coast city manager, said his city last week alone received building permit applications for 12 new homes from area builders, matching the total number the city issued the entire month of April last year.

"Our whole effort here in Palm Coast has been (growing) one job at a time," Landon said.

Lori McMullin, a spokeswoman for the Center for Business Excellence, the workforce development board for Flagler and Volusia counties, said construction employment was up for both counties in January as well, with Volusia having a year-over-year net gain of 400 jobs and Flagler a net gain of 100.

"In both counties, we’re starting to see (construction employment) on the rise," McMullin said. "It’s not a drastic increase, but it is an industry to watch."

Read more here: http://www.sunherald.com/2013/04/09/4581256/report-pascagoula-has-highest.html#storylink=cpy

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Construction Employment Reaches 3 Year High

Posted by nahetsblog on April 9, 2013

Construction industry employment climbed for the tenth consecutive month in March, as the sector added 18,000 jobs and surpassed 5.8 million employees for the first time since September 2009, according to an analysis of new government data by the Associated General Contractors of America. Association officials cautioned that the industry may soon experience both layoffs for some skilled trades and shortages of others, unless policy makers boost infrastructure investment and allow importation of needed workers.

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Marine Wing Support Squadron 171 Heavy Equipment Operators

Posted by nahetsblog on April 3, 2013

Marine Wing Support Squadron 171 Heavy Equipment Operators

Heavy equipment operators from capitalized on the opportunity to practice using their heavy equipment at the Haramura training area near Hiroshima during Exercise Thunder Horse, March 17-22, 2013.


The Marines practiced digging 14-foot trenches and individual fighting positions in an open field near the main campsite.

“The techniques from the training weren’t just meant for practice,” said Staff Sgt. Jose Camberos, MWSS-171 heavy equipment operations chief. “It gives the Marines an understanding of how their equipment works and the ways to move dirt. When the Marines leave the schoolhouse, they don’t get the opportunity to dig anti-tank ditches and fighting positions.”

Along with combat-oriented digging, Marines earned experience assisting others digging trenches around tents with backhoes instead of using entrenchment tools.

“Digging the trenches helped me to get a better feel for the backhoe,” said Lance Cpl. Austin Blodgett, MWSS-171 heavy equipment operator. “It added valuable stick time, which is when we get behind the controls and earn time practicing.”

With extended periods of rain throughout the training, mud and clay made operations more difficult for the Marines. It escalated to the point where even vehicles with all terrain tracks were getting stuck.

“Earth-moving is very specific when it comes to the material,” said
Camberos. “If the material is too dry, it will crumble away. If it’s too wet, vehicles tend to get stuck. We had the dozer get stuck, and that rarely happens.”

Aside from moving dirt and mud, Camberos also explained what his concept of the training was truly about.

“What I mainly look for when I train them in earth moving is the Marines understanding what they’re doing and not just moving dirt,” said Camberos. “If Marines don’t know the correct process for digging a fighting position, it would become a counterproductive process.”

With the Haramura training ground providing conditions for valuable teaching periods, the Marines leave not as experts, but more experienced in their profession.

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