Articles by Mark Skaer

Convention Shooting for ‘Extra Large' Show

By Mark Skaer
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When the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) polled its membership last spring, wanting to know which topics they most wanted to hear explored at this year’s annual conference, becoming a leader was one of the top picks. Association officials believe they have filled that request with Steve Farber, who will be the main speaker at the opening general session.
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Techs See Base Salary Increase

By Mark Skaer
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At the 2008 Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) Conference, talk among contractors could very well revolve around ACCA’s latest labor survey. First, the good news: Techs earning between $45,000 and $54,999 jumped from 21 percent in 2005 to 30 percent in 2007. The bad news: Techs earning in the $35,000-$44,999 salary range dropped from 42 percent three years ago to 34 percent in 2007.
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Hairy Today, Gone Tomorrow? Observations From NYC

By Mark Skaer
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I learned more than a few things at the recent 2008 Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition in New York City, including finding out that my boss, along with two NEWS editors, could not work for Bradenton, Fla.-based contracting firm LPAC - at least not with their current facial hair.
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Skaer-Tactics: How was Your NYC Experience?

By Mark Skaer
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For those who attended the 2008 International Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition in New York City Jan. 22-24, I want to hear from you. What did you think of the three-day walkfest at the Jacob Javits Convention Center?
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Associations Work Together to Solve Labor Shortage

By Mark Skaer
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There is one strong development in regard to the labor shortage issue in this industry. The alarming reality is that it is bringing many contractor associations together in an effort to not only find ways to overcome, but supply productive solutions for, the ever-growing problem.
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Green to Be Made in Green Movement

By Mark Skaer
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The push toward green isn’t just in major markets with big-name developers. Those in smaller markets also are developing environmentally friendly properties. So it’s easy to understand why the smarter HVACR contractors are joining the green brigade. There really is money to be made in going green.
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Instructor Workshop Continues to Grow

By Mark Skaer
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Get Michael Honeycutt or Gerry Kennedy on the phone discussing this year’s HVACR & Plumbing Instructor Workshop, and … well … one has to actually excuse oneself in order to move on to other tasks. Each is excited about the upcoming gathering.
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Employees Happy, Relatives Latch On

By Mark Skaer
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You know you have a great place to work when retired employees are more than willing to cook at their former company’s Christmas party. This - and so much more - explains why A.O. Reed & Co. was selected as the West region winner in The NEWS’ 2007 Best Contractor to Work For contest.
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Where are the Scholarships for Potential Techs?

By Mark Skaer
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In the process of trying to help a future HVACR tech, I recently discovered that there is a lack of available scholarships for students seeking to attend, or who are attending, HVACR vocational schools. So, where are this industry’s scholarships for students enrolled at vocational schools? Let me know.
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One More Semester, But Who Is Counting?

By Mark Skaer
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The NEWS has been following the educational path of HVACR student Brad Bartz since he stepped into Ranken Technical College in St. Louis for the 2006 fall semester. This is another installment in a series of periodic reports on Bartz’s career path progress.
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