Joel Long of Gastonia, N.C., had a face-to-face meeting with President Bush and was able to discuss issues affecting contractors such as health care, estate taxes, and tort reform.

Long, a third generation owner of Gastonia Sheet Metal, and three other North Carolina businessmen met with the president for about 20 minutes during the president's visit last spring to Charlotte, N.C.

Long is a member of the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors-National Association (PHCC). "This meeting was very important for not only Joel, but for all PHCC contractors and small businessmen," said Lake Coulson, PHCC's vice president of Government Relations. "It was extremely helpful that the president heard directly from a contractor about the issues that PHCC deals with on a daily basis."

Publication date: 11/01/2004