HVAC Breaking News

March 2, 2010: ACCA CEO Testifies Before Senate Committee, Urges Support for Trades

March 2, 2010
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+

WASHINGTON - Paul Stalknecht, president and CEO of the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), testified on behalf of the association before the U.S. Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pension Committee.

Stalknecht told the committee that more than half of ACCA’s members have fewer than 10 employees and generate less than $1 million in annual revenue. According to the 2007 Economic Census, the industry employs nearly 200,000 mechanics, installers, helpers, and related personal. The average annual salary for HVACR technicians is $46,500.

The HVACR industry, he reported, is facing a workforce crisis due to attrition, a shortage of skilled technicians, and difficulties in recruiting new workers. Despite the current economic downturn in the construction industry, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the need for HVACR mechanics and installers will grow 28 percent between 2008 and 2018.

This growth is fueled by government mandates and incentives to improve residential home and commercial building efficiencies. Current federal and industry programs that support job training are not able to keep up with the demand for skilled HVACR technicians, he noted.

On behalf of ACCA and based on input from members across the country, Stalknecht issued the following recommendations and observations:

Congress needs to develop federal policies that can foster a change in the culture of job training and career counseling. Many young people “look down” on the skilled trades even though the trades offer opportunity, job security, a comfortable lifestyle, and a career path to entrepreneurialism and business ownership.

Second, on-the-job training must be part of any apprenticeship program in order to be a success. Many graduates still lack specific skills because they didn’t receive on-the-job training.

Third, federal policies should be expanded to encourage and support accredited state and local apprenticeship programs that already exist. Some of ACCA’s chapters partner with community colleges and local contractors to teach and mentor students with tremendous success.

Fourth, Congress should continue to support and expand the roles of the Workforce Investment Boards where they involve local business leaders along with representatives from schools and trades.

Finally, Congress should assist small businesses that develop their own in-house training programs to meet unfulfilled needs, especially in rural areas. These smaller apprenticeship programs face bureaucratic hurdles that could be streamlined for greater effectiveness.

A copy of Stalknecht’s complete testimony is available online at www.acca.org/testimony.

Publication date: 03/01/2010

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to The NEWS Magazine

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

Mini Split Installation

Twin Cities contractor Aabott Ferraro helped retrofit an older St. Paul home.

Podcasts

NEWSMakers: Doug Dougherty

Doug Dougherty, president and CEO of the Geothermal Exchange Organization (GEO) joins the program to discuss the latest happenings with GEO, including the drive to get included in state and federal definitions of renewable energy, plus the future of geothermal.  Posted on July 25.

More Podcasts

ACHRNEWS

NEWS 07-28-14 cover

2014 July 28

Check out the weekly edition of The NEWS today!

Table Of Contents Subscribe

R-22 PHASEOUT POLL

Some in the industry are calling for the EPA to halt production of R-22 as of 2015. What do you think?
View Results Poll Archive

HVACR INDUSTRY STORE

plumbing-hvac.gif
2014 National Plumbing & HVAC Estimator

Every plumbing and HVAC estimator can use the cost estimates in this practical manual!

More Products

Clear Seas Research

 

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications, Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

DON'T MISS A THING

Magazine image
 
Register today for complete access to ACHRNews.com. Get full access to the latest features, Extra Edition, and more.

STAY CONNECTED

facebook icontwitter iconyoutube iconLinkedIn i con