John Deere Power Systems officials announced plans to extend their generator drive power solutions when they roll out the PowerTech PSL 13.5-liter prime power generator drive engine.
According to Darrin Treptow, manager of worldwide marketing for John Deere Power Systems, the new engine becomes the most powerful in a lineup that meets U.S. Environmental Protection Agency final Tier 4 emissions regulations without the need for a diesel particulate filter (DPF).
“Since the introduction of our constant speed generator drive engines without DPFs earlier this year, we have been working to implement this solution in our generator drive engine lineup,” Treptow, said. “With this addition we are able to offer our customers both the power ratings and performance they need for their power-gen applications.”
Treptow added that the space-saving package also gives original equipment manufacturers more installation options for prime power generator set applications. As with the other engines in the no-DPF generator drive lineup, this new 13.5-liter engine employs a John Deere Integrated Emissions Control system with cooled exhaust gas recirculation, a diesel oxidation catalyst and a selective catalytic reduction system.
“Our engines are designed to perform reliably in a variety of operating conditions, making them ideal for prime power solutions,” Treptow said.
David Frum, the keynote speaker at the 30th Annual CanaData Construction Industry Forecast Conference, told those in attendance that both Canada and the U.S. are at very high political risk currently as governments begin to challenge the idea of the private sector being in control of decisions about investment and the use of capital.
“We’re seeing the rise of politicians who reject private sector-led growth for the first time really in 30 years. What that means is that elections are about to become much higher risk events with much higher consequences,” Frum stated.
“This is an industry that is very affected by these issues. The question is, who will be the client in the future? Will government be your most important client, or will private sector clients be your most important client? The question of who invests probably is more immediate for people in the construction industry than almost everywhere else.”
A senior editor at the Atlantic, Frum is also the author of eight books and served as speechwriter and special assistant to President George W. Bush in 2001-2002; in 2007-2008, he was senior adviser to the Rudy Giuliani presidential campaign.
While politics dominated his discussion at CanaData, with Canadians heading to the polls Oct. 19 and the Americans voting in 2016, Frum also pointed out some interesting aspects of the economy and how change is imminent.
“I wanted to get across first, that the news about the Canadian economy is impressively hopeful. The Canadian economy has reacted much faster than traditionally would have been expected to the changing value of Canadian currency,” he explained about the dollar, adding Canada has seen a manufacturing and jobs surge over the past three months. “Canadian manufacturing is really coming back.”
This is evident in the auto sector, he said.
Frum was also quick to point out the change that’s beginning to emerge between our relationship with the car, which in turn could change the way places are built.
“We have waited for 20 years to know what was the next such thing that would really transform the economy. I think that we can begin to see it’s first the change in our attitude towards the car…and the coming of the driverless car that is going to change the way we use urban space,” he said.
“The revolt against spending hours and hours a week commuting, the desire to be in closer to proximity to one another to enjoy urban life, that is going to be a dramatic event, especially for construction industries.”
All of these elements, however, are being overshadowed because of rising political risk, Frum added.
“How does business get done in a world in which the rules of the game that we have known for 30 years may be about to change, and change very dramatically?” he asked.
He said that throughout the Canadian campaign, he’s seen the Liberals and NDP come forth with major ideas and promises that could overwhelm voters.
“The two parties that had a change message took an early lead. They began to compete with each other to have ever more ambitious approaches to change,” he states.
“My sense is at this point, they have outpaced the appetite of the electorate for change. Both the Liberals and the NDP are now offering more change than Canadians are going to be comfortable with. That leaves a tremendous opening for the Conservatives to be the party of responsibility, protecting what people have, avoiding adventures.”
But while Canadians await their chance to vote, there are still factors to consider across the border as well.
During Frum’s address, questions from the audience inevitably surfaced around Donald Trump and his attempt to become the Republican presidential candidate. Many wondered if he can be taken seriously.
“Donald Trump is an unserious person, but the movement that he is leading is a serious movement,” Frum stated. “He will not be president of the United States. He’s going to fade. Donald Trump is exactly the type of figure who would not sell in Canada. Canadians are very cautious voters.”
Frum also noted that elections, regardless of what country, “are not about the past, ever.”
Source: Cole, L. 2015. Who is Canadian construction’s future client? MapWarehouse. Retrieved from http://dailycommercialnews.com/Infrastructure/News/2015/10/Who-is-Canadian-constructions-future-client-1010443W/
Sandvik Construction on Thursday announced the launch of its latest scalper vehicle, the QE241 heavy duty scalper.
The company states that this vehicle performs like its premium counterparts, but in a more compact design and a smaller scale. This vehicle would be ideal for smaller companies that are looking for high performance and versatility.
Within this design, the company states that clients will be able to easily transport the scalper between construction sites. The scalper can handle oversized products and is efficient in both operating cost and in energy usage. They also state that the controls are easy to use and the vehicle is compliant with current European safety standards and regulations.
The scalper features a belt feeder that has varying speeds and a double-deck screenbox that is 11 feet-by-4 feet. It also consists of a 47-inch wide conveyor that is capable of managing a variety of materials including oversized pieces. For smaller debris, the scalper also has two conveyors that can fold out of the way through a hydraulic system.
Sandvik Construction specializes in the development and manufacturing of equipment and tools for drilling and breaking operations in the construction industry.
As the Utah Equipment Dealer Association (UEDA) works with Salt Lake Community College to establish a pathway to achieving AED Accreditation for the college’s current Diesel Systems Technology program, there will be a heavy-duty focus on readying a modern, trained workforce for the industry.
“The biggest thing is the shortage of techs in our industry,” said Ryan May, president of UEDA. “Even through the different cycles, the highs and lows, we’ve never had a time — at least in my history — that we’ve had too many techs.
“There has always been a shortage,” May told Equipment Reporter.
May said trying other methods to put more trained technicians in the field, such as formal education, rather than hiring untrained, unskilled technicians and providing them on-the-job training, as has been the standard in the past, will go a long way towards plugging the shortage.
With that goal in mind, UEDA and several other representatives from dealerships in the greater Salt Lake City area recently met with Salt Lake Community College officials who they will be working with hand-in-hand toward achieving the AED Accreditation for the college’s Diesel Systems Technology program.
“It is just not the tech school part of it, the reason we are teaming up with them is because they are building a new facility and they are ramping up their end of it,” said May, who is also president of Century Equipment Co.
May said UEDA will also be embarking on efforts to better educate those preparing for careers about the diesel tech field.
“The biggest thing is just getting more people interested in the field,” he said. “Whether we train them ourselves or they go through school, we just need more guys interested in the field.”
That additional interest is another reason UEDA is helping to get the college’s program accredited.
“We want to locally get our AED involved with the career centers, even at the high school and junior high levels, just to increase the awareness and get these guys interested in this field at an earlier age,” he told the Equipment Reporter. “The pay is good and that awareness is not at that early age.”
To increase awareness, May said the association’s AED group, along with the community college, is planning to have a career-day event in spring 2016.
“We are going to invite the counselors from junior highs and high schools to come and at least get them aware of what we do and what we are after,” May said.
He added that it likely will “take a couple of years” before the college’s two-year degree program receives AED Accreditation.
“That is a big commitment on our part,” May told Equipment Reporter. “We are going to be working directly with them every step of the way to work them through the process of getting accredited.”
For months, House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) insisted that comprehensive international tax reform would provide the funding for the House highway bill. However, on October 2, Ryan and his Senate negotiating partner, Sen. Chuck Schumer (R-N.Y.), acknowledged progress was slow and encouraged the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee to move forward on surface transportation reauthorization without an international tax reform component.
Chairman Ryan’s plan was always met with skepticism by the transportation community. A key component of Ryan’s idea would likely involve “deemed repatriation,” which taxes U.S. companies’ offshore profits even if the businesses never actually bring the money back to the country or never intended to do so. The proposal divides the business community, which unanimously supports a modest user fee increase to pay for roads and bridges, and faced stiff opposition from Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orin Hatch (R-Utah) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
What’s next? The Senate already passed its legislation, the DRIVE Act, a six-year authorization providing only three years of funding. Chairman Ryan’s acknowledgment that international tax reform likely won’t serve as the key financing provision for the House’s legislation allows the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee to release and mark-up its highway bill in the near future, without a funding component. The Ways & Means Committee can then decide to provide its own offsets, use the Senate’s pay-fors, or a combination of both to replenish the Highway Trust Fund.
Chairman Ryan’s acknowledgement now allows the process to move forward. Presumed Speaker and current Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) stated his desire to make highway bill completion a top accomplishment soon after assuming the speakership. While the funding is still uncertain, progress is being made.
Now is the time to keep the pressure on Congress to complete its work as soon as possible. Visit AEDaction.org to weigh-in with your lawmakers.
On Oct. 1, AED joined 105 other signatories on a letter regarding the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) recent decision overturning the 30-year-old “joint employer” standard used for determining when one company is liable for the labor practices of a another organization.
The letter to Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) and Reps. John Kline (R-Minn.) and Phil Roe (R-Tenn.) thanked the leaders of the House and Senate committees with jurisdiction over workforce and labor issues for introducing the Protecting Local Business Opportunity Act (S. 2015/H.R. 3549). The legislation would restore the longstanding “joint employer” standard, reinstating protections for companies not in “direct and immediate control” over the terms and conditions of a worker’s employment.
In its recent decision in Browning-Ferris Industries, the NLRB determined companies are potentially liable for the labor practices of other entities with which they have contracted services – even if no direct relationship exists with the employee. “As noted by the [NLRB’s] two dissenting members,” the letter stated, “this new rule will ‘subject countless entities to unprecedented new joint bargaining obligations that most do not even know they have, to potential liability for unfair labor practices and breaches of collective bargaining agreements, and to economic protest activity, including what have heretofore been unlawful secondary strikes, boycotts and picketing.’”
For AED members that contract services – from janitorial support to sales or maintenance – joint employer status could mean increased legal risk, labor cost and business uncertainty. In its support of this effort, the association is defending the rights of its dealers by ensuring commonsense labor rules.
On Oct. 1, the Senate approved the Protecting Affordable Coverage for Employees “PACE” Act (HR 1624), sending it to the president’s desk just days after the House passed the same bill. While protecting smaller companies from health care premium increases, the legislation’s passage marks the first successful bipartisan effort to fix one of Obamacare’s particularly problematic provisions.
Prior to the Affordable Care Act’s (“ACA” or Obamacare) enactment, an employer with 50 or fewer employees was considered a “small employer” and could purchase health insurance coverage in the small-group market. The ACA revised this historical threshold upward, redefining a small employer as companies with 100 or fewer employees. The revision was expected to result in significant premium increases for small to mid-sized employers due to the expansion of the small group market to include businesses with up to 100 employees.
H.R. 1624 amends the Public Health Service Act to redefine a small employer as one with 50 or fewer employees and gives states the option to expand the definition to include employers with up to 100 workers. Consequently, it allows states the flexibility to keep existing definitions of a small group market so businesses and their employees can keep their current healthcare plans, mitigating inevitable premium increases.
AED commends Congress for working in a bipartisan manner and looks forward to working with lawmakers to enact further ACA revisions to limit the law’s negative impact on equipment distribution companies.
Sakai Heavy Industries recently named RDO Equipment Co. the Sakai America Dealer of the Year.
RDO Equipment, representing Sakai in Central Texas, Arizona and Southern California, received the award based on metrics that include both volume and total sales. In addition to Dealer of the Year, the highest level of recognition, Sakai also recognized four top regional dealers in the Northeast, West, Midwest and Southeast.
“We are pleased to be the Sakai dealer of the year and appreciate the recognition. Sakai complements our overall product offering and has been a contributor to our rental growth and market strategy,” RDO Vice President Daryl Shelton said. “Sakai makes reliable products that are well-received by our customers who purchase and/or rent for their fleets.”
Denver Weinstiger, vice president of Sakai Sales and Product Support, said, “Sakai has had an outstanding year thanks to the hard work and personal commitment of our dealers. We strongly commend Daryl Shelton and his team in Texas and Dennis Howard and his team in the Southwest for their efforts in promoting Sakai for RDO.”
House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) rocked Capitol Hill by announcing he will resign from Congress at October’s end.
While a political pundit’s dream, the House leadership shuffle won’t alter the House agenda significantly or impact AED’s policy priorities. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Cal.), Boehner’s presumed successor, will face the same issues (a divided GOP, the Obama administration and a united Democratic minority, a mounting federal deficit, etc.) that challenged the current Speaker.
Prior to his ascension to House leadership, Boehner was never considered a friend of federal infrastructure investment (he famously bragged about never voting in favor of a highway bill). However, understanding the need to govern, Boehner committed to bringing a multiyear surface transportation bill to the House floor. McCarthy made the same pledge and the obstacle remains the same—funding the bill. Like Boehner, McCarthy won’t support user fee increases and prefers to use savings from international tax reform to pay for the bill. House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) is tasked with identifying Highway Trust Fund revenues; that won’t change and neither will the battle between establishment conservatives and the far-right over the federal government’s role in infrastructure and other issues.
Similarly, the House’s tax agenda will remain the same. Like Boehner, McCarthy will defer to Chairman Ryan on tax policy issues, including comprehensive reform and extenders. Even if McCarthy desired to fast-track 50 percent bonus depreciation and increased Sec. 179 levels reinstatement, the Senate would need to work quickly—an unlikely scenario. While AED remains confident these capital investment incentives will be extended for at least 2015, final passage likely won’t happen until December.
McCarthy may differentiate himself from Boehner on one of AED’s top priorities, the crude oil export ban. While Boehner has always been supportive of domestic energy development, McCarthy’s congressional district encompasses the Kern County oilfield, a major production area. Consequently, he’s a strong proponent of lifting the crude oil export prohibition. Allowing U.S. producers to export crude could create as much as $47 billion per year in additional energy supply chain economic activity (i.e., equipment sales, rental, and product support, labor, construction contracting services, materials sales, etc.).
In conclusion, while an interesting story, Speaker Boehner’s retirement won’t have a substantial impact on Congress’ productivity (or lack thereof) or AED’s policy agenda. The GOP caucus is unchanged, Obama remains in the White House, the presidential race is still approaching in 2016, and there’s no desire to raise new revenue or make tough political choices to reform the tax code.
Major changes are underway at Caterpillar Inc. as restructuring and cost-reduction actions are expected to help lower operating costs by as much as $1.5 billion a year, according to company officials.
“We are facing a convergence of challenging marketplace conditions in key regions and industry sectors – namely in mining and energy,” Caterpillar Chairman and CEO Doug Oberhelman said. “While we’ve already made substantial adjustments as these market conditions have emerged, we are taking even more decisive actions now. We don’t make these decisions lightly, but I’m confident these additional steps will better position Caterpillar to deliver solid results when demand improves.”
Changes will begin by year-end and reflect current market conditions. This year’s sales and revenues were down as much as $1 billion and are not expected to surpass $48 billion. Next year, sales and revenues are expected to be about 5 percent below 2015.
But revenues are not the only thing down this year, as the number of Caterpillar employees has also shrunk over the years.
Since 2013, Caterpillar has closed or announced plans to close or consolidate more than 20 facilities, impacting 8 million square feet of manufacturing space. The company has also reduced its workforce by more than 31,000 employees since mid-2012.