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Opening Thoughts from the Southeast Region Board of Directors

The AAMA Southeast Region 2017 Spring Meeting, held April 25-26, at Orlando, FL, received valuable information on regional code adoptions, resilient home standards, field testing accreditation, windstorm insurance solutions, workplace safety, innovate hurricane protection and energy efficiency financing, coordinating building envelope details and the state of the economy.Read on for information on the following:Southeast Region Working to Keep Pace with Model CodesFortified Home Program Defines Levels of ResiliencyField Testing Agency Accreditation Program LaunchFlorida Building Code and Approval Process UpdateFraud Raises Florida Windstorm Insurance RatesIntroducing the...

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Industry Basking in Improved Outlook

The long-heralded recovery of the window and door industry appears to have arrived, according to fenestration industry economics expert, Mike Collins of Building Industry Advisors, who identified the various positive and negative forces influencing the trajectory of industry fortunes.Collins listed positive macroeconomic factors as strongly improved employment statistics (an unemployment rate some 60 percent lower than five years ago) and a stabilized labor participation rate that has reached the same level (63 percent) as it was prior to the 2008 downturn. The 2017 GDP is...

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Fenestration Interfaces: The Devil is in the Detailing

At the Southeast Region Spring Meeting, Kevin Longest and Karen Zimnicki of Wiss, Janney, Elsner (WJE) reviewed common sources of bulk rainwater penetration at and around fenestration components in building enclosures and discussed the responsibility of the architect to understand and mitigate these risks. They reviewed case studies illustrating poor interface detailing, project document discrepancies and the consequences of shifting design responsibility “downstream.” Finally, they considered the potential of Building Enclosure Commissioning (BECx) to address these concerns.Uncontrolled rainwater penetration, condensation and moisture-related deterioration are the...

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PACE Offers Innovative Financing for Home Improvements

Measures to improve a home’s resistance to storm damage and/or enhance energy efficiency are often deterred by formidable upfront costs. The Property-Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program seeks to remedy that situation by offering an innovative mechanism for financing windstorm damage protection and energy efficiency improvements on private property. Local governments, state governments or other inter-jurisdictional authorities, when authorized by state law, fund the up-front costs of improvements on commercial and residential properties.Property owners who voluntarily choose to participate in a PACE program repay their improvement...

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Introducing the Safety Playbook

Continuing to delve into the latest trends and techniques in workplace safety, the Southeast Region featured Sara Wallon, EHS Director for PGT Custom Windows + Doors of Venice, FL, who discussed approaches to developing a comprehensive company “Safety Playbook.”Wallon reviewed the characteristics of a safety culture that leads some organizations to become top performers. She challenged attendees to aspire to become visionaries instead of just compliers. The former she defined as those who “actively seek and learn more about safety methods and thinking” and are...

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Fraud Raises Florida Windstorm Insurance Rates

Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (Citizens) was created by the Florida Legislature in August 2002 as a not-for-profit, tax-exempt, government entity to serve as the insurer of last resort, providing windstorm damage protection to home, business and condominium owners who are entitled to but are unable to find property insurance coverage in the private market. Coverage is funded by policyholder premiums. If the company’s surplus is depleted in the wake of a particularly devastating storm or series of storms, Florida law requires Citizens to levy assessments...

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Florida Building Code and Approval Process Update

The numerous compliance paths and varying requirements of Florida’s Building Product Approval (PA) system are subject to revision at every triennial code update cycle. These are implemented by the state’s Technical and Product Approval Team under auspices of the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR). Mo Madani, CBO, Technical Director for the PA operations, gave an in-depth update on the current state of the program.There are two paths for product approval: the state path and the local path.The state path covers approval of...

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Field Test Agency Accreditation Program Launch

AAMA Certification Manager, Jason Seals, explained the Field Test Agency (FTA) accreditation program, which AAMA plans to launch later this summer.Historically, in order to be accredited for field test methods such as AAMA 502, Voluntary Specification for Field Testing of Newly Installed Fenestration Products, the field test agency must first be accredited as a full-service air-water-structural laboratory. The new program allows for independent accreditation for field testing alone. It is open to all providers of field test services, including consultants and design firms.To be an...

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Fortified Home Program Defines Levels of Resiliency

The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) has created the FORTIFIED Home™ program to help homeowners strengthen their homes against hurricanes, high winds, hail and severe thunderstorms.Remington Brown, PE, Senior Engineering Director for IBHS, explained that a FORTIFIED Home adheres to a set of engineering and building standards —developed using more than 20 years of storm damage investigations at the IBHS Research Center under the Component Materials Evaluation Testing (COMET) program. Dubbed the “National Standard for Resilient Construction,” the standards are designed to...

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Southeast Region Working to Keep Pace with Model Codes

Southeast Region code consultant, Dick Wilhelm, kicked off the code update segment of the AAMA Southeast Region Spring Meeting by pinpointing where the bulk of the building activity was underway. Just over three-quarters of the building permits issued across the 10-state region in 2016 were attributable to four states: Texas (34 percent), Florida (24 percent), Georgia (11 percent) and Tennessee (8 percent).The code status in the region as related to adoption of the requisite I-codes, is summarized as follows in order of the most active...

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