Hanson Pipe & Precast adds City Drains, Hydroguard to branded lines

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An agreement with Betonwerk US will see Hanson Pipe & Precast manufacture and distribute City Drains, a streamlined, unobtrusive surface drain and underground pipe system for commercial and residential applications. Terms call for the producer to offer two models in Florida: the City Drain 100, which is designed for residential and light commercial use, can be saw-cut on site, does not require a cast-in-place foundation, and includes a newly developed connection system; and, City Drain 150, which suits commercial use, eliminates traffic vibration noise, and reduces concrete foundation requirements. Both models can be paved directly to the edge and install quickly.

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Sakrete teams with master artisan Cheng on clay-like ‘ShapeCrete’

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In collaboration with decorative-concrete expert Fu-Tung Cheng, Charlotte, N.C.-based Sakrete of North America LLC has announced a dry mix affording artisans and do-it-yourself homeowners a concrete that can be poured, rolled, pushed or molded into an infinite variety of designs and effects. Packaged in 20-lb. pails and formulated for a 30- to 60-minute work time, ShapeCrete is sold through arts & craft, hardware and home improvement retailers.

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Concrete Joint Sustainability Initiative names 2015 officers

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A coalition of industry institutes and associations representing individuals and companies that design, fabricate, construct, or maintain concrete structures, the Concrete Joint Sustainability Initiative (CJSI) has appointed Lafarge Construction Specialist Julie Buffenbarger as chair, plus Portland Cement Association CEO James Toscas and American Concrete Institute Director of Sustainability and Marketing Kevin Mlutkowski as vice chairs, focusing on advocacy and operations, respectively.

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Cement companies score best on carbon, energy in sustainability watchdog audit

An external audit of multinational producers behind the World Business Council for Sustainable Development Cement Sustainability Initiative finds high scores in two of seven key CSI Charter areas: 1) Carbon Dioxide and Energy Management and 2) Fuels and Materials Use. Emissions reduction and resource optimization have netted economic savings, improved waste recovery, and nurtured innovation.

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Road Builders pitch tax, rebate plan to fund six-year, $400 billion highway bill

As members and their customers approach the current federal surface transportation program’s May 31 funding sunset, the American Road and Transportation Builders Association has outlined a plan it believes could end the political impasse over how to cover Washington, D.C.’s share of state highway, bridge and transit capital projects—while seeding a $401 billion, six-year highway and mass transit capital investment bill.

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Federal contractor ‘blacklisting’ framework winds through White House, agencies

The Department of Labor has submitted to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a proposed rule enacting President Obama’s July 2014 Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order (E.O.), provisions in which can bar participation in federal projects if contractors or their subcontractors have violated labor laws in the past three years.

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OSHA, NIOSH flag silica in manufactured stone

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A joint Occupational Safety and Health Administration and National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Hazard Alert defines dust control measures to protect workers from significant crystalline silica exposure during manufacturing, finishing, and installing natural and manufactured stone countertops, leading types of which bear 60–95 percent silica content.

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Kentucky, Florida Representatives return masonry check-off bill to Capitol Hill

Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-KY-2) and lead co-sponsor Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL-14) have introduced the Concrete Masonry Products Research, Education, and Promotion Act of 2015 (H.R. 985) into the 114th Congress, its title and language nearly identical to 2013 legislation. The bill would authorize concrete masonry interests to conduct an industry-wide referendum establishing a commodity check-off program; approval would lead to a U.S. Department of Commerce-sanctioned stakeholder board empowered to collect a target amount per concrete masonry unit sold. It contains provisions for the industry to eliminate the program at any time and requires at least half of funds to be reinvested in regions from which they were collected, thereby supporting products most beneficial to a specific geographical area.

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