No Joy in Mudville

Wilson_Joy_2007September 10, 2012 - "There is no joy in Mudville/Mighty Casey has struck out" goes the famous poem. Well soon, there will be no Joy in the aggregates industry, as Mrs. Pittinger is leaving town. The news that Jennifer Joy Pittinger is departing as president of the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association came out of the blue last week and hit like a ton of, well, stone. I remember well when Joy took over as head of the association, following in the footsteps of Bob Bartlett, the man who was well known for remembering the name and the college attended of everyone he knew. That was 16 years ago. Joy has accomplished much and seen the industry hit historic peaks, then come crashing back down during her tenure. Her enthusiastic presence will be missed at association events. Look for more about Joy's departure in an upcoming issue of Rock Products.

Safety Streak Surpasses 2 Million Hours

aggregates.usSeptember 4, 2012 - Everything is bigger in Texas, even the news. Aggregate Industries US (AIUS), a Holcim Group Company, announced today that Lattimore Materials Corp. (LMC), an Aggregate Industries US company, surpassed the 2 million hour mark without a lost time injury. LMC is a leading provider of ready mix concrete and aggregate products to building trades in North Texas. "We commend Lattimore for its accomplishment and unwavering attention to safety," said Bernard Terver, president and chief executive officer of Aggregate Industries US.  "Our employees have shown great commitment to implementing our universal safety measures. We're proud of their accomplishments and look forward to continued excellence."

Production Jumps

usgsAugust 20, 2012 – Preliminary reports from the USGS indicate second-quarter production will take a sizable jump over the first quarter of the year. Crushed stone production will reportedly rise a healthy 47 percent over the first quarter; sand and gravel a whopping 63 percent; and cement 42 percent. Year over year the increases are much more modest, but still trend upwards. The rise mirrors an increase in housing starts and construction spending, and is a good sign coming in advance of any bump Map-21 may give the market.

Ryan Proposed Slashing Transportation Funding

paul-ryanAugust 15, 2012 – NSSGA reports it does not really know what to make of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), the presumptive GOP vice-presidential nominee. Ryan’s  selection as Mitt Romney’s running mate has raised concerns, or at least questions, in the transportation sector. The worry stems from Ryan’s budget proposal in 2011 that would have incurred a steep cut in transportation funding. In his post as House Budget Committee chairman, Ryan has twice tried to implement drastic cuts in transportation spending in a push to balance the U.S. budget.

Read more: Ryan Proposed Slashing Transportation Funding

Getting Together Up North

seraLogoAugust 6, 2012 – Two are sometimes better as one. The Aggregate Forum of Ontario and Socially and Environmentally Responsible Aggregate Canada (SERA-Canada) will merge their non-profit organizations to better focus on developing voluntary social- and environmental-certification systems for the aggregateindustry in Ontario. Bill Galloway, senior vice-president at Holcim Canada Inc. and a SERA-Canada Board Member called the move “the right thing to do at the right time.” The two organizations will merge their boards to establish a "single world-class environmental and social certification system" for responsible aggregate extraction, permitting and operations.