Florida block makers begin voluntary contributions to check-off-modeled fund

Independent and major operators representing 60–70 percent of the Sunshine State’s concrete masonry production capacity assembled in early March to sign a commitment, effective this month, to contribute 1 cent per concrete block sold to support the Florida Concrete Masonry Education Council (FCMEC) Inc.


Representatives from charter signatories A-1 Block, Argos Ready Mix, Cemex Construction Materials Florida, Maschmeyer Concrete of Florida, Prestige Concrete Products, Supermix/Superblock and Titan Florida fittingly convened at the Masonry Lab on the Mid Florida Tech campus in Orlando. Their commitments have the potential to raise $1 million-plus annually for Council education and promotion activities.

“This marks a momentous day for our industry and we look forward to implementing these important educational programs for masons across the state,” said FCMEC Chairman Troy Maschmeyer. “We’ve been collectively working on this program for a very long time and are enthusiastic about the many benefits it will bring to the industry.”

6 Floridaii 400

Cemex Construction Materials President Gonzalo Galindo makes his company’s FCMEC commitment official during last month’s Mid Florida Tech campus gathering. Host Pat McLaughlin (right) is leading the Council on interim basis, in addition to his duties as Masonry Association of Florida Inc. executive director.

The Orlando-based Council was chartered as a nonprofit corporation and Florida Department of Economic Opportunity direct-support organization by the Concrete Masonry Education Act, which state lawmakers passed in mid-2014. Appointed by Governor Rick Scott and bound by state guidelines for open meetings, FCMEC brings together producers and contractors to plan and conduct training programs; improve access to masonry education; develop outreach programs to ensure diversity; and, inform the public about the sustainability and economic benefits of concrete masonry products.

Joining masonry producers and contractors as charter Council members are Florida Concrete & Products Association and Florida SkillsUSA representatives. FCMEC has launched with Collections Process & Procedure, Finance & Budget and Grant Evaluation subcommittees. An independent accounting firm has been retained to oversee collections in strict confidence. Masonry Association of Florida chief Pat McLaughlin is serving FCMEC temporary executive director.