The Building Tradesman Newspaper

Friday, December 16, 2011


By The Building Tradesman

Young Joey would appreciate a card

While you’re sending out Christmas cards this year, putting an extra one in the mail with a personal get-well wish would put a smile on the face of an 11-year-old boy.

Joey Caretti, the nephew of Pipe Fitters Local 636 Business Manager Frank Wiechert, is on his third battle with cancer. He has leukemia, brought on by a chemotherapy drug he was taking to treat brain cancer, which happens in a small percentage of cases. Joey needs a bone marrow transplant.

“He’s in a real battle,” Wiechert said, “all he’s asking for is cards.” The goal is to get him 1,000 get-well cards.

Joey’s mom, Lisa Caretti, told the Detroit Free Press that after her son’s first brain tumor, they thought “they would never see this again, that it would be gone and we were just counting our blessings, and then in April of 2010, he had another seizure here at the house and they found another brain tumor.”

Numerous media outlets have picked up on Joey’s request. Pointing to a pile of cards he has received, Joey told, “I have to admit it really does make me happy.”

His mom said, “It’s almost guaranteed at one point he’ll have to be in one or more times in the hospital for fevers or infection because they bring your resistance down to nothing so they can build it back up again.”

To send a card and encouragement to Joey, please write:

Joey Caretti
22671 Eddy Drive
Macomb, MI 48044

Construction jobs shrink some more

Construction employment shrank for the second straight month in November as residential, nonresidential building and heavy construction segments remained in low gear, according to an analysis of new federal employment data released Dec. 2 by the Associated General Contractors of America.

“Industry employment has remained virtually unchanged since early 2010 despite a pickup in some private construction,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “Although the construction unemployment rate fell to 13.1 percent in November from 18.8 percent a year earlier, the lack of industry job growth means former construction workers are finding work elsewhere or leaving the workforce altogether. That’s ominous for future construction hiring.”

Construction employment was actually 11,000 lower in November than in February 2010, while the private sector as a whole added nearly 3 million jobs in that time.

AGC officials said the employment drop reflects continued declines in public sector investments.

New Hampshire overrides RTW bill

CONCORD, N.H. (PAI) – Union lobbying and economic arguments that a right-to-work law would drive down New Hampshire wages swayed enough New Hampshire House Republicans to vote on Nov. 30 to uphold Democratic Gov. John Lynch’s veto of a statewide right-to-work statute.

The House vote was 240-139, with all 98 Democrats voting to sustain the governor’s veto. There were 13 Republican votes needed to sustain the veto, but tremendous public pressure moved 41 Republicans – many of who flipped on their original pro-right-to-work votes earlier this year – to join Dems.

“Today, 139 elected representatives in the House stood with ironworkers,

teachers, nurses and firefighters to sustain Gov. Lynch’s veto of the so-called right-to-work law,” state AFL-CIO President Mark MacKenzie said.  “Their vote is a clear signal to all of our elected leaders, in New Hampshire and elsewhere, that attacking the rights of everyday Americans isn’t the key to economic prosperity.”

New Hampshire would have become the nation’s 23rd right-to-work state after a vote by their Republican-dominated legislature earlier this year. Oklahoma became the most recent RTW state, in 2001. There is real fear that the Republican-dominated legislature in Michigan will similarly introduce a right-to-work measure for our state.

“Union members aren’t thugs.  They’re police officers.  They’re firefighters,” said state Rep. Jeff Goley, D-Manchester, during the debate, according to AP.  Goley, a firefighter, added: “What will right-to-work do here in New Hampshire?  Right-to-work will lower wages and lower benefits, not create jobs.”