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The PHCC Gazette

Volume 3, Issue 23 Plumbing � Heating � Cooling � Contractors of Northern Virginia, Inc. October, 1998

PHCC-National Annual Convention Oct 13-17 (see page 3)

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Protecting the health, safety, and comfort of society and the environment

Meeting Information
When & Where

Every second Wednesday at the Best Western (The OLD Holiday-Inn) @ route I66 & 123. 3535 Chain Bridge Road Fairfax, Virginia. The evening will begin with a social hour at 6:30PM. followed by a buffet dinner at 7:00PM.

For More Information Call

William J. Baumbach II, Editor

9975 Pennsylvania Ave Manassas, Va. 20110

Phone: (703) 367-7900 Fax: (703) 691-0946

E-mail: Editor@phcc.org

PHCC Web Page: www.phcc.org

At This Meeting

Sponsor will be Noland Company

Noland's guest speaker will be Robert Shuster, Attorney-at-law. Mr. Shuster will be giving us pointers on collection practices and especially bad debt collections, something we all could use help with at times.

Mr. Shuster’s practice over the past ten years includes commercial and construction litigation and collections. As an advocate for commercial material supplier and subcontractors, Mr. Shuster has been involved in numerous mechanics lien claims and bond claims in state and federal courts.

Mr. Shuster is a member of the Maryland Bar; District of Columbia Bar, Virginia Bar; United States District Court for the Districts Maryland and DC; and the Commercial Law League of America.

Mr. Shuster also has presented lectures for the National Association of Credit Managers (NACM) and various trade associations.

At The Last Meeting

Sponsor of the meeting was J & H Aitcheson, Inc. represented by Warren Brown and co-sponsor was Jim Snoor of Burnham. Our guest speaker was Frank Davis w/ CATS (Citizens for an Alternative Tax System) who spoke the members about HR2001- National Sales Tax bill.

David Bailey PHCC of Virginia's executive director was present and spoke to the crowd briefly.

We had a prospective new member attending the meeting. Art Benidetti with L. Engelking, Inc. Hope to see you at future meetings.

Peter Reictner of Comfort Doctor won the 50/50 drawing. He took home $59.00.

Don't forget to attend the next meeting on October 14th, 1998. The sponsor for October is Noland Company.


Did You Know…

9% of background-checked employees has a criminal record?

31% had a previous workers’ comp claim?

41% had one or more moving violations on their driving records?




PHCC has partnered with Avert, Inc. to present you with a low-cost way to protect yourself in employee hiring situations.

The special PHCC package includes:

A "First Check" report. It helps assure that you are hiring someone with an assigned social security number

A felony county criminal court report

Two employment reference checks

How Do You Get Started With Avert?

Call 800-367-5933 and tell them that you are with the PHCC and you want to become an Avert customer. PHCC has negotiated a special savings rate for our members...and you will save even more if you use your PHCC MasterCard to charge your purchases. Call 800-847-7378 to sign up for your PHCC MasterCard. Check out Avert on the web at http://www.avert.com  dead link 11-2007 or call PHCC at (800) 533-7694.

Let's Stick it to the Utilities

They say utilities are like an 800-pound Gorilla — they sit where they want to and do exactly what they want. At the PHCC– National Association’s convention in Toronto (Oct.13-18) you can make life a little harder for the nation’s utilities by playing the Government Relations Department’s "Pin the TALE on the Utility Gorilla." Bring any advertisement, bill stuffer, or flyer showing examples of your local utility’s unfair and anti-competitive services. Contestants will be blindfolded and asked to pin a "tale" onto the utility gorilla. Prizes will be awarded.

But, most importantly, the examples of unfair competitive practices will be valuable ammunition PHCC can show members of Congress.

So keep an eye open for those utility bill stuffers and advertisements and bring them with you to Toronto. If you are not able to attend the Toronto convention, just send them to the national office.

Oct. 13-18, you’ll be on your way to the shores of Lake Ontario, to the city of culture, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, for the 116th Annual PHCC–National Association Convention.

The time to register is NOW. Early-bird registration only lasts until Aug. 11 (that’s postmarked by). After Aug. 11, rates increase about $100 per couple. That’s one-night’s hotel stay at the beautiful Westin Harbour Castle. So sign up today!

The PHCC annual convention will feature many educational and enjoyable events. Many sponsors have returned, allowing us to keep convention affordable for you, our members. The NEX tradeshow is back and bigger than ever. Fact is, it’s sold out. Allow yourself two days at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre for this really big show.

The theme for this year’s convention is "Teamwork: Today, Tomorrow, Toronto." President Garvelink and others invite you to participate in the dialogue at the annual meeting. Discussions will focus on what we’ve done in the past and how we plan to change, working together. The long-range goals are about to take shape. As a contractor-member, come to Toronto; let your voice be heard. We’ll even leave the light on, eh?

It’s all happening at the Westin Harbour Castle Hotel, Toronto. To make reservations, call the hotel directly at 1-416-869-1600 or toll-free at 1-800-228-3000. Mention the PHCC Annual Convention or NEX to get the best rate. Make your hotel reservation early.

Never been to Toronto? Need some questions answered? Call the national office for facts, findings, assurances, whatever. We’re here to help motivate you there. We promise, you won’t want to leave. See you across the border in October!

Want to Increase Your Profit Margin?

Who doesn’t? Sign up now for the convention seminar "Pre-construction Planning for PHC Contractors:

Increasing Productivity and Profitability." This seminar will be offered in Toronto, Canada, on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 1998.

Taught by Purdue University Department of Building Construction Management Professor John Koontz, you will learn about the tools and methods for applying pre-construction planning techniques, and identify areas of potential labor productivity improvement which have the greatest return-on-investment.

HVAC excellence

There’s only one nationally recognized certification program: NATE— North American Technician Excellence. Exams will be given at locations around the country on Oct. 24, 1998. To register or for further information, call NATE at 817-649-TEST (8378).



Employment Laws Assistance for Workers and Small Businesses

The U.S. Department of Labor’s elaws (Employment Laws Assistance for Workers and Small Businesses) Web site is designed to help you, as an employer or an employee, understand your rights and responsibilities under the laws and regulations administered by the Department of Labor. Elaws features a series of "Advisors," interactive sections that provide information about a specific law or regulation. Web site address is


ESA Family and Medical Leave Act Advisor — Learn about employee eligibility under this law, including valid reasons for leave, employee/employer notification responsibilities and employee rights and benefits.

OSHA Asbestos Advisor — Building owners, managers and lessees, as well as some contractors, can get assistance in writing reports describing their responsibilities under OSHA’s Asbestos rules.

OSHA Confined Spaces Advisor — Learn how to identify confined spaces and how to deal with permit required confined spaces.

OSHA Fire Safety Advisor — Understand how to apply OSHA’s Fire Safety related standards.

OSHA Hazard Awareness Advisor — Examine activities, materials, and equipment in your work place to identify common occupational safety and health hazards. Get a customized report that describes the hazards and related OSHA standards.

OSHA Lead in Construction Advisor — Learn safe construction work practices in dealing with lead containing materials.

OSHA $afety Pays Advisor — Estimate the financial impacts of occupational illnesses and injuries for your firm.

What does your phone number spell?

Go to the above web page and you can find out what your phone number spells or you can type in a name and it will tell you what the name would be as a phone number.

Modern Marvels: Plumbing: The Arteries of Civilization

Past PHCC-National President Bob Kreutzer appeared on the show, and did an excellent job representing our association!

Order on line at: http://historychannel.com/ 

Go to the "History Store" Then do a "Search Our Store" for "plumbing" or call tem at 1-800-408-4842

AAE-42223 $19.95 50 minutes

What happens behind the walls of your house when you turn on the shower? How were the ancient Romans able to provide hot and cold running water millennia before the advent of electricity and gas heat? How does water get from reservoirs to people's homes?

Behind the seemingly mundane topic of plumbing lies one of the most important stories in the history of civilization. For without water, there cannot be life. MODERN MARVELSTM traces the long and surprising history of plumbing, from the earliest archeological evidence of irrigation systems long before the birth of Christ to the vital networks that keep our cities quenched and clean. Through visits to ancient sites, dynamic animation illustrating how plumbing works and interviews with experts, PLUMBING chronicles an often-overlooked element of life.

Suds-N-Flood Tamer Backflow Control

Low cost patented unique device to stop the backflow of suds, water & sewage. Used in thousands of locations in the US and Canada. Used in sinks, water closets, floor drains, etc. Easily installed in existing or new plumbing fixtures

10509 Orchard St. Fairfax, Va. 22030
1-800-280-2820 Fax: 703-691-0946

Membership Dues

Full active membership in all three tiers of the PHCC federation is now only $515.00 per year.

This includes the:

  • $315.00 for PHCC-NA, (national)

  • $100.00 for VAPHCC, (State)

  • $100.00 for NVPHCC. (Local)

Washington Gas Files Request To Offer Choice To Thousands Of Natural Gas Customers In Virginia

The company has filed a request with the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) to implement a two-year pilot program that will provide additional Washington Gas customers the experience of choosing a natural gas supplier. With approval from the Virginia SCC, Washington Gas residential and commercial customers in the state will have the option of choosing their gas supplier and taking control of their energy costs. Larger commercial customers have had the option available to them for several years.

``Washington Gas seeks to grow through valued customer choice options,'' said James H. DeGraffenreidt, President and COO of Washington Gas. ``Energy choices put customers in control of their energy decisions.''

Under the proposed pilot, customers may buy their gas voluntarily from another energy supplier. Washington Gas will continue to be responsible for meter reading, safety-related services, and the reliable delivery of natural gas through its local system of pipes.

Customer choice results from natural gas industry restructuring at the consumer level. A term used to describe this restructuring process is known as ``unbundling.'' Unbundling refers to the separation of each element of utility service, such as the cost of the gas commodity, from other energy-related services, such as the local transportation of natural gas.

Proposed enrollment targets for the first year of the pilot are set at approximately 29,000 residential customers and 2,000 commercial customers. Customers could enroll in the pilot program at any time and would be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.

A major objective of the pilot program is to familiarize customers with some of the decisions they will encounter as the effects of the restructured natural gas industry reach local consumers. ``Customers will have the advantage of studying and comparing the options presented by a number of gas suppliers,'' said DeGraffenreidt. If the Virginia SCC approves the pilot, it will monitor the program and analyze data collected by the company to determine the program's success and the value of moving forward with customer choice in Virginia.

Washington Gas intends to meet the needs of its customers by providing valued products and services at competitive prices. It serves nearly 800,000 customers in the Washington, D.C. area and surrounding regions. Washington Gas currently coordinates successful customer choice pilot programs in Maryland and is awaiting a decision from the D.C. Public Service Commission to initiate similar programs there. For additional information about Washington Gas, its subsidiaries, history, products and services, please visit the Washington Gas Web site at http://www.washgas.com.

Hammond Valve is the latest manufacturer to join the PHCC Professional Product Line (PPL) program. The company will begin offering its line of plumbing and heating valves through the product line.

Warner in the news again

For details on this www.phcc.org/Warner/ removed 10-31-05

The week of September 14, 1998 again, Jan Fox aired Warner on WUSA twice.

Below is an email message I got from Tom about it and would like to share with you


We were featured on the WUSA 6 PM news again.

After the Tom Warner ongoing expose, I called Jan Fox and asked what exactly she wanted from me.

She replied, "I want to know if you had sex with Monica Lewinsky?"

I told her that I have never had sex with Monica. In fact we don't even have a relationship.

Jan then asked me, "Have you ever been alone with Monica in your office?"

I told her that I meet a lot of people in my office, but I don't remember

meeting anyone named Monica Lewinsky.

Jan then said, "I know you tricked everyone in Montgomery County to like your Cadillac service and now after a three year investigation, there are still no complaints.

But we all know Monica likes plump men and a former employee of yours told me about the connection between you and Monica."

William, I just want you to know that the WUSA/Jan Fox investigation may be taking a new turn.


Tom Warner

Yes, Tom has a sense of humor and it is a joke about the "Lewinsky" stuff, but the "WUSA 6 PM news again" is true. I thought it was funny it had me rolling on the floor!

Newsletter Changes:

The PHCC Gazette has gone from a four-page newsletter to twelve. The extra pages will be used for advertising sponsorship. It cost the PHCC over $8,000.00 a year and we need to recover some of this cost. Ad space will be offered full-page, half-page, quarter-page and business card sizes.

  • Full Page - $200.00
  • Half Page - $125.00
  • Quarter Page - $80.00
  • Eighth Page - $50.00

PLEASE show your support for the PHCC & the PHCC Gazette and call today! Contact William J. Baumbach II at 703-367-7900.



Long’s Corporation (703) 323-1776

TV Camera Inspections of Sewer Lines

Type of Service: TV Camera Inspections of Sewer Lines (Also: HVAC Duct, Electrical Conduct, -1/2"-12" Water Mains, Storm Sewers)

Requirements: Cleared lines with no backups, weather permitting

Additional Services: Video Taping of lines*, location and depth of obstruction or breakage.

Cost of Services:

  • Residential: $350.00
  • add for drain clearing: 150.00
  • add for videotape: 40.00
  • add for locator: 100.00
  • Commercial: $500.00
  • add for drain clearing: 250.00
  • add for videotape: 40.00
  • add for locator: 100.00

Note: * this is not an option for lines that cannot be cleared or relieved of water/waste (if your eyeball can’t see through it, the camera can’t see through it!) Locations can be made with standing water in lines.

Vegas Nite

Join us for the 3rd Annual Plumbing, Heating, Cooling Industry Vegas Nite!

Saturday, November 14, 1998. Westwood Country Club, 800 Maple Ave. Vienna, Virginia. Heavy Hors d'Oeuvres and Cash Bar from 7:00 to 8:00, followed by Games and Dancing from 8:00 to 12:00 midnight.

Tickets are $40.00 per person and reservations may be made by calling Jody Lilliston at 703-378-0606, extension 15.

The evening is Country Club Casual (No Ties Required) and there will be door prizes and an auction at the close of the gaming tables.

Come and join the fun with many others from the industry.

Everyone is welcome, this is NOT a members only function. And be sure to bring a friend or business associate!

PHCC Code of Ethics

To consider our trade worthy as affording us distinct opportunities to serve society

To improve ourselves, increase our efficiency and enlarge our service, and by so doing attest our faith in the fundamental principles of life, that we profit most who serve best

To realize that we are business persons and ambitious to succeed; but we are first ethical persons, and wish no success that is not founded on the highest justice and morality

To maintain the highest ethical standards of advertising, pricing, selling, installation, and service guided by the principles of honesty and integrity

To promote the latest technological advances in the design, types and methods of installation of plumbing-heating-cooling systems; using equipment and materials complying with the standards recognized by this industry

To enter enthusiastically into the association work--to give as well as take--and do our part in elevating the industry

To support all progressive moves that are being carried out along the lines of trade extension, standardization and sanitation

To conduct our affairs that others in our business will find it wise, profitable and conducive to happiness to emulate our example

To follow and execute our work in conformity with federal, state, county and city building, safety, energy and water conservation, fire and housing codes; and refusing to be a party to any action that violates these regulations

To promote conservation of water and energy to the public we serve through improved, adequate, safe, modern installation of energy efficient equipment

Legislative Update
by Laurie Crigler

Here I am again…I've switched hats to my more permanent hat…that of Legislative Co-Chair so you still have to listen to my ramblings. I've told my co-chair, Lorrie Norton, that I would do this report because I have something really exciting to report.

I was privileged to be asked to testify before a sub-committee in Congress on the utility deregulation issues from a small business perspective. I represented PHCC-NA (and of course VA PHCC) as one of five panelists to discuss how deregulation can help or hinder our businesses.

The other organizations represented were ACCA (a gentleman from Michigan), the Restaurant Association (a gentleman from Rhode Island), NAHB (homebuilder, a gentlemen from Texas I think), ABC (a gentleman from New Jersey). I was nervous and excited all at the same time but mostly I was honored that "lil' ole me" was sitting in front of Congressional legislators talking about this issue. It was a WONDERFUL experience. We were also very fortunate that Congresswoman Sue Kelly (NY) was the chair as she was one of the most gracious legislators I've come across. She made us all feel comfortable and like we were really doing the committee a huge favor just by being there to "enlighten" them.

We were given five minutes to speak and get our issues out and then questions were asked. I was the last to speak and while several others had loads of statistics and examples about "fair/unfair competition" (which was the thrust of our discussion) I was the "clean-up batter". I was the one to testify from the heart and soul of how this effects our small businesses. This was by design (each organization got together to indicate what focus was being taken so we wouldn't be redundant) and it worked rather well, if I do say so myself. Speaking last also had another benefit. I was able to see how really short five minutes is and, although I only had 4 1/2 pages of testimony, I did some fast editing in my head and read only the highlights so that it actually came out in a fairly organized-sounding manner. I was able to conclude with my big punch line right at the 5 minute light! (Yes they had a light that started green, went to yellow and turned red at 5 minutes and you were supposed to stop).

I think the Legislators were surprised to hear about this issue because they have been so tied up with the concept of transmission lines, grid systems, tax problems and generation problems that they really did not know that the energy companies, in their effort to survive, were trying to start businesses (mostly with rate-payer funds) that could ultimately put a lot of small businesses out of business.

I was able on at least two occasions to tell the legislators about the agreement we have done with VA Power and how we are working on with the other utilities (and I included a copy of the agreement in my written testimony). Wouldn't it be wonderful if Virginia was the model for the Federal legislation? I think so!

It was a wonderful discussion and I'm delighted that PHCC-NA had the confidence in me that I would say the right things. I hope that it had the effect I think it did! 'Till next month…Laurie Crigler VA PHCC Legislative Co-Chair.

John C. Flood

Local PHCC member John C. Flood is featured on the front cover of the September issue of P&M Magazine. Look for the article "Not-So-Wet Wet Heads"
by Steve Smith. You can read it on the P&M web site at: http://www.pmmag.com/featarchives/0998feature.htm


 Why Belong To The PHCC?

Primarily because you are in business, and because as a member of the PHCC you have a voice in your industry, similar to the voice you have in your community through your vote and civic activities, you owe a certain amount of responsibility to your business, by which you make your living.

In the business world today an Association is an absolute necessity. Without an Association there would be no way of keeping abreast of what is going on in the fields which are important to your business.

Sure, you can get information of a sort, independently, but the PHCC is your agency, working constantly in your interest and keeping you informed of the latest developments, which might vitally affect your business, and advising you how to meet the situation.

It is only natural and logical that trade problems should be handled through an Association, therefore, the PHCC must be strong, efficient and have the cooperation and support of its members.

Too many members just stay away and wait for the PHCC to come to them with bushels of benefits. They expect the most, but do the least. The member who really gets something out of his membership is the active and cooperative member. He attends the meetings, conventions, tries to carry out the Association programs and does his part when appointed to any committee.

Doctors, dentists and lawyers safeguard and protect the health, personal and collective rights of the people of this country. They have learned the value of collective action and are proud of their respective Associations. The PHC contracting services are just as valuable and necessary to the health and welfare of the nation. Therefore, the PHC contractor should be proud of his or her Association and want to be a member!






















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