Posts

carpenter, apprentice, career, training

Start Your Journey at our 2019 Open Houses

carpenter, apprentice, career, trainingJoin the Carpenters of the Indiana/Kentucky/Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters (IKORCC) for our annual Open House & Apprenticeship Competition. Watch competitors battle in our Crafts Skill Competitions, take a tour of the training center, visit vendor displays, meet elected officials, enjoy refreshments and much more!

Below is a list of the 2019 Carpenter’s Training Center Open Houses:

Indianapolis Campus
711 Greenwood Springs Dr.
Greenwood, IN 46143
P: 317.807.1116
Open House: September 24, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm (Local time)

Louisville Campus
1245 Durrett Lane
Louisville, KY 40213
P: 502.366.8668
Open House: October 1, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm (Local time)

Monroe Campus
361 Breaden Drive
Monroe, OH 45050
P: 513.539.7849
Open House: September 12, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm

Columbus Campus
1899 Arlingate Lane
Columbus, OH 43228
P: 614.236.4205
Open House: September 10, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm

Newburgh Campus
5400 Covert Court
Newburgh, IN 47630
P: 812.853.9312
Open House: September 26, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm (Local time)

Merrillville Campus
1565 E 70th Court
Merrillville, IN 46410
P: 219.942.0518
Open House: September 10, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm (Local time)

Richfield Campus
4100 Maple Drive
Richfield, OH 44286
P: 330.659.9495
Open House: September 24, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm

Warsaw Campus
1095 Mariners Drive
Warsaw, IN 46582
P: 574.267.5264
Open House: September 12, 2019
Times: 8am -2pm (Local time)

Ashland Campus
574 Carpenters Way
Grayson, KY 41143
P: 606.929.1362
Open House: October 17, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm (Local time)

Terre Haute Campus
3099 S. 6th Street
Terre Haute, IN 47802
P: 812.466.7899
Open House: October 15, 2019
Times: 8am -2pm (Local time)

Rossford Campus
9270 Bass Pro Boulevard
Rossford, OH 43460
P: 419.872.4651
Open House: September 26, 2019
Times: 8am – 2pm

IKORCC Welcomes New Members from Carpenters Industrial Council

The Indiana Kentucky Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters is proud to welcome our newest members from the Carpenters Industrial Council. Below you will see a welcome letter from IKORCC EST Todd Pancake. 

Dear Member:

I’d like to take the opportunity to personally welcome you to the Indiana / Kentucky / Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters.  As we continue to grow, we strive to remain as adaptable, motivated and responsive to our new members as we are to our customers. I would like to take this opportunity to share with you how each and every one of you plays an important part in our Council.  We pride ourselves by keeping informed on events affecting the union; and staying in tune with public policy changes on federal, state and local levels affecting our member’s industry and livelihood.  One of the most important facets of a union member’s responsibility is having a positive attitude – a positive attitude brings optimism and motivates toward success. Another important role you’ll play is your participation in activities organized by the Union.  Whether the Union calls for the distribution of information, collecting signatures, voting, picketing or striking, it is important for our members to participate whenever possible.

Our Brotherhood is confronting a time of many changes and we’re meeting these changes during a time of larger nation-wide and global change. We’ll continue working to ensure our organization remains on the cutting edge.

We’re continuously transforming the way we operate to improve our ability to be competitive in an ever-changing climate. Our members and partners have continued to meet challenges that arise and we will work together to overcome them. We are very proud of where we are today and excited about where we are headed.

This link will provide contact information for all of your Regional Council Offices. Should you have questions, please contact the office closest to your home local.

Before I finish, I’d just like you to know that you, as part of our team, are our most important and greatest asset. We could not accomplish what we do every day without our members. I’m very pleased to welcome you to the Indiana / Kentucky / Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters and look forward to working with you!

M. Todd Pancake
Executive Secretary-Treasurer
Indiana Kentucky Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters

Brother Todd Pancake Named New EST

M. Todd Pancake has been a member of the Carpenters Union for nearly 40 years and is a proud member of Local 133 in Terre Haute, Indiana. Union pride runs in his family, his father was a member of the operating engineers and both his brothers are carpenters with the UBC. He completed his apprenticeship in 1984, earning his Associate’s Degree in Applied Science from Ivy Tech. Brother Pancake worked in the field for 10 years as a carpenter, steward and foreman while also serving as the president of his local.

In 1991, EST Pancake accepted a position as a carpenter instructor for the Central Indiana Carpenters Apprenticeship program where he taught general carpentry classes including blueprint reading, layout, health & safety, scaffolding and interior systems.

In 2005, EST Pancake took on a new role as the Director of Education for the Indiana Kentucky Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters Joint Apprenticeship Training Fund. As the Director of Education, EST Pancake oversaw nine training centers in Indiana and Kentucky, grew the apprenticeship and Career Connections programs, and implemented new programs to enhance leadership training.

In 2017, EST Pancake joined the IKORCC as the chief-of-staff working directly with now Midwest Vice President Mark McGriff. In his role as chief-of-staff, EST Pancake had the opportunity to work with contract negotiations, council committees and most importantly focus on exceeding council goals.

In March 2019, General President Douglas McCarron asked then EST Mark McGriff to accept the position of Midwest Vice President. Upon accepting the role VP McGriff said,

“Todd Pancake was an obvious choice for the role. He has served our membership for 40 years as a carpenter, instructor, director of education and chief-of-staff. I’m confident that under his leadership the IKORCC will continue to surpass goals and lead the way for years to come.”

EST Pancake started his career like many of our members, as a first-year apprentice. He worked his way up from that point, honorably serving our membership in various leadership roles along the way. His experience on the training side coupled with his work for the council gives him a 360-degree view of where we are as a council and where we need to go.

Please join us in congratulating the IKORCC’s new EST Todd Pancake. 

IKORCC Wins Commercial Project of the Year

They haven’t officially cut the ribbon opening the new Merrillville training facility and already the IKORCC’s state-of-the-art building is winning awards.

Wednesday the Indiana Kentucky Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters earned the prestigious “Commercial Project of the Year Award” from the Construction Advancement Fund (CAF) for the new administration and training facility in Merrillville.

The buildings, which are located at 1560 E. 70th Court in Merrillville, were built by Hasse Construction with the help of union carpenters.

The CAF hosts an annual award ceremony in partnership with the Northwest Indiana Building Roundtable (NWIBRT) to recognize excellence in construction and safety.

The IKORCC Merrillville project was recognized for being completed on schedule, within budget, with minimal disruption to the operation, all while upholding the highest commitment to safety.

The IKORCC administration building is 13,000 square feet and the training center is an impressive 64,000 square feet. The training center will help thousands of people build their careers in the industry. Carpenters, floor coverers, and millwrights will receive the latest skill & safety training thanks to the new facility.

To learn more about the Merrillville Training Center, or to build a career in carpentry click here.

IKORCC Hosts UBC Midwest District Olympics

Saturday carpenters and floor layers from across the Midwest battled it out in the UBC Midwest Drywall & Flooring Olympics at the IKORCC headquarters in Greenwood, Indiana.

All competitors won regional drag races in order to advance to the Midwest finals. The participants all did amazing, but only one in each category advanced to the championships at the Carpenter’s International Training Center in Las Vegas, Nevada later this year.

Jose Reyes from the Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters won first place in the drywall race, with an impressive time. Our own Manuel Banegas, Local 301, earned second place in the drywall contest!

Joshua Landis from the St. Louis-Kansas City Regional Council won first place in the flooring contest. The IKORCC’s Noel Johnson also had a great showing in the flooring competition.

Thanks to all who participated in the UBC Midwest Drywall & Flooring Olympics at the IKORCC!

IKORCC & JATC Add 222 New Journeymen to the Workforce

5200 hours of on the job training, 640 classroom hours, 4 years of dedication and sacrifice – that’s the kind of experience you get when you hire a union journeyman. Carpenters, Ohio Carpenter JourneymanSaturday night, 222 fully trained journeymen and women graduated from the JATC & IKORCC apprenticeship program in Columbus, Ohio.

The graduates are a vital addition to a workforce desperate for skilled tradesmen. Graduates were trained as carpenters, millwrights or floor coverers.

Building America with Skilled Trades

In a speech to graduates, Patrick Reardon, Executive Administrator of Apprenticeship for the Ohio Office of Workforce Development, said IKORCC carpenters are building our future.

“When we think of an elite carpentry workforce here in the United States – it’s everyone graduating in this room,” he said. “Everyone here is building America and we are relying on you to continue to catapult us to the future.”

16 Veterans Graduate through Helmets to Hardhats

16 of the graduates honorably served in our nation’s military and took part in the IKORCC’s Helmets to Hardhats program. Helmets to Hardhats puts vets on a fast track to union apprenticeship and a rewarding career in carpentry after their military service.

State Training Director Vince Wright said, “Thousands of veterans come home to Ohio each year and need new jobs and careers to get started in. I’m proud to say out of our 2,200 apprentices, we have 216 Helmets to Hardhats apprentices.”

Colonel Mark J. Cappone, Assistant Director of Ohio Veterans Affairs, said, “Tonight is a great way to remember the contributions that our vets make to the workforce, to remind us that those who have served have grit, determination, perseverance and they know how to be on a team.”

Colonel Cappone presented a sealed recognition of the apprenticeship program on behalf of Ohio Governor John Kasich at the event. Governor Kasich commended the graduates for their hard work.

Continuous Training Sets Union Carpenters Apart

IKORCC Executive Secretary-Treasurer Mark McGriff also commended the graduates, while offering advice for the future. “When writing the story of your life, make sure no one else is holding the pen,” he said.

“There are so many opportunities in this organization, you have to take advantage of every single one of them,” McGriff added. McGriff and other staff members encouraged new journeymen to keep up with continuous training and serve as role models for apprentices.

A New Generation of Journeymen

New graduate Jacob Weiser, from the Northwest JATC and Local 351, plans to do both. Staff chose Weiser to speak at graduation after recognizing his dedication. “I’ve learned the importance of this apprenticeship and why the training is necessary to push our union and our trade forward,” Weiser said.

Weiser added, “I’m going to keep learning and keep trying to find better ways to get things done. I’m going to give my contractor what he’s paying for – a solid eight hours of carpentry, from a well-trained union journeymen carpenter.”

Congratulations to all graduates! 

Indianapolis Carpenter Manuel Banegas Nails the Win

Hanging drywall sounds easy, but can you do it faster and more accurately than dozens of your peers across Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio? Local 301’s Manuel Banegas did just that.

Banegas and dozens of other participants competed to see how they measured up in the Drywall Drag Race Olympics. Banegas will represent the IKORCC in the United Brotherhood of Carpenter’s Midwestern District Interior Systems Competition on April 21st. Competition starts at 9:00 a.m. at the IKORCC headquarters in Greenwood, IN. Congratulations Manuel and thanks to all our participants! 

‘Worker misclassification’ seen as growing threat by contractors, unions in the Region

Andrew Steele andrew.steele@nwi.com, 219-933-3241
Sep 3, 2017 Updated Sep 8, 2017

As companies strive to increase profits amid a changing economy and consumer habits, the discussion often centers on challenges posed by the “gig economy” and its impact on work and employment.

Upstart companies like the Uber ride-sharing service tend to be the focus of concern; recent reports of such companies’ drivers speaking out against perceived company efforts to trim their pay bear this out.

Online story on NWI Times

But the growing use of short-term contracts in industries such as construction is threatening traditional employment in a way some say has reached a critical phase.

The fight is over what’s commonly called “employee misclassification” — or payroll fraud, in the view of unions and contractors. It involves an employer hiring workers as freelancing contractors who should be full-time employees, thereby allowing the employer to avoid paying payroll taxes, and worker’s compensation and unemployment insurance premiums, among other costs.

“It’s a problem that’s been around for many decades,” said Dewey Pearman, executive director of the Construction Advancement Foundation of Northwest Indiana. “But it’s becoming epidemic.”

Officials with the Indiana/Kentucky/Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters visit job sites frequently to talk to carpenters, said Scott Cooley, senior representative at the union’s local headquarters. He said he often talks to contract workers who he believes should be formal employees.

“We run into it all the time,” Cooley said. “It’s just a regular occurrence.”

Some workers in question receive a federal 1099 form at the end of the year, but others aren’t reported at all, and are just paid cash for their work.

‘No magic’ in defining employment

Classifying employees properly isn’t an exact science. It involves several variables, including the degree of company control over the employee; the financial arrangement, including who provides tools and supplies; whether there are benefits such as a pension and insurance; and whether work performed is a key component of the business’ activity.

The Internal Revenue Service lists 20 factors to consider, and states in its guidance on the matter that “there is no ‘magic’ or set number of factors that ‘makes’ the worker an employee or an independent contractor.”

But contractors and the carpenters’ union say some building projects are rife with contract workers who clearly are misclassified: their hours and duties are assigned by their employer, their tools and supplies are provided, and their work is a core function of the company — all factors that generally make one an employee, not a contract worker, in the eyes of the law.

Quantifying the problem

A 2010 study commissioned by the Indiana Building & Construction Trades Council and the Indiana, Illinois, Iowa Foundation for Fair Contracting argued that a company’s use of these workers gives employers who use the practice a decided, but unfair, competitive advantage.

The report, by economists from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, estimated 72,299 employers, 8,052 of them in construction, had misclassified employees in 2008. It said 15.3 percent of employees were misclassified, totaling 377,742 workers, of whom 24,323 were in construction.

The practice also has implications for governments at all levels, the study found. For the state in 2008, $30.4 million in unemployment insurance taxes were lost, $2 million of that from the construction industry.

Between $134.8 million and $224.6 million of income tax revenue went unpaid, with $10.6 million from the construction industry.

Local income tax losses statewide totaled $91.2 million, $7.2 million of that from the construction industry, according to the study. Also, $26.3 million of worker’s compensation premiums were not properly paid, with $4.6 million of that from construction, according to the report.

Ultimately, the University of Missouri report estimated the costs to the state of Indiana, at a high end, of about $406 million annually.

But a precise evaluation of the cost to government is elusive. Several state agencies charged by the state’s Pension Management Oversight Commission with doing a study of their own in 2010 disputed the methodology and assumptions of the university study.

They estimated 8 percent of workers, not 15.3 percent, are misclassified, and that the state loses $14 million to $20 million annually in tax revenue, “of which (the Department of Revenue) could be expected to recover a substantial portion.”

The report, by the state departments of Workforce Development, Labor and Revenue and the Workers’ Compensation Board, also questioned the impact on the workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance system.

Finally, the report’s writers argue that misclassification often is an innocent misunderstanding of the law. “Heavy-handed penalties will have little impact on these employers,” the report concluded.

But contractors and unions dispute these conclusions, saying the effect on their work is clear and stronger enforcement is key. When a state legislative study committee investigated the issue last year, more than 40 contractors wrote letters contending that the misclassification problem has grown to the point that it threatens the viability of construction companies that abide by the rules.

The companies included Northwest Indiana’s Berglund, Gough, Larson-Danielson, Precision, Prodigy, Solid Platforms, Specialty, Superior, and Pangere.

Misclassification “gives cheating contractors a 30 percent advantage in bidding, undermining the legitimate contracting community through low-ball bids that do not represent the cost of conducting lawful business,” wrote Timothy Larson, president of Larson-Danielson Construction Co.

Enforcement elusive?

The carpenters’ union recently had success when it filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board regarding a LaPorte hotel under construction. The complaint alleged that misclassification of workers impeded their ability to act collectively and form, or join, a union.

The complaint resulted in a settlement requiring the contractor to reclassify the employees and to inform them of their rights under federal law. But union officials called that settlement “a slap on the wrist” and, along with the contractors, have urged greater enforcement.

“There are laws on the books right now; the problem is they’re not enforced,” Cooley, of the tri-state carpenters’ council, said.

Efforts on the state level have included a law that took effect in 2010 requiring the Labor, Workforce Development and Revenue departments, along with the Worker’s Compensation Board, to share information on possible worker misclassification in the construction business.

The state also maintains an email address to receive tips, wagehour@dol.in.gov.

But further efforts to bolster enforcement have met with resistance, according to the state senator behind a bill proposed in the last session.

“We’ve got all these different departments, and they’re supposed to share this information, but it doesn’t always happen,” said Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Ogden Dunes.

Tallian authored a law that would have created a Payroll Fraud Task Force made up of representatives of the four state agencies. The law would have required hiring an investigator dedicated to investigation and enforcement. The bill had one committee hearing but never received a vote.

“We recognize there’s a problem. We just don’t know how big the problem is, and we don’t know for sure how to fix it,” said the Pensions and Labor Committee chairman, Crawfordsville Republican Phil Boots, when he concluded the Feb. 1 committee hearing on it.

Tallian said the state government has downplayed the problem and the state agencies’ potential to address it.

“It keeps getting worse,” Tallian said. “This bill will be filed again. We’re going to keep pushing it.”

CSCRC Relief Fund is Accepting Donations to Help Our Members in Texas


Central South’s Local 551 – the largest Local in our Council – sits in the heart of this historic natural disaster still unfolding in Texas.

The CSCRC Relief Fund is activated and is accepting donations so that we can get aid to our brothers and sisters who have been devastated by Hurricane Harvey and the 500-year flood that it caused.

If you can, please consider donating. Make your check out to CSCRC Relief Fund and mail it to: CSCRC Relief Fund, 2850 Massachusetts Avenue, Metairie, LA 70003. For more information, visit their page at http://www.centralsouthcarpenters.org/
Thank you!

Megan Walkowiak Receives Appreciation Award from Carpenters Local 435

The Indiana Kentucky Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters (IKORCC) selected Megan Walkowiak from Carpenters Local 435 to represent the Early Intervention Committee’s motto for, “Contractor, Community, Customer”, during the summer conference. She is a 3rd generation carpenter. Her grandfather, Benny Sroka (deceased), was an Honorary 65 year member, and her father, Dave Walkowiak, is a 39 year member. 

Like most young adults graduating high school, Megan had ambitions. She decided to pursue a bachelor’s degree in business management, with a minor in human resources. After entering the world of nine-to-five, she decided being behind a desk wasn’t for her. Instead, she wanted to pursue a career as a contractor. She approached her father about joining the carpenters union and he insisted she had to go through the apprenticeship program.

While going through her apprenticeship, Megan excelled and started to stand out as a leader. During the third year of her apprenticeship, Megan was chosen to go to the International Training Center (ITC) in Las Vegas, Nevada. Upon her return, she immediately applied the skills she learned from her training. Megan began to mentor other women in the trade and started giving back to the community. Megan stated that one of her favorite volunteer projects was reroofing a house for a needy family whose child had cerebral palsy.

Megan was appointed as Chairperson for Locals’ 435 and 373 Sisters in the Brotherhood (S.I.B.) Committee, where she conducts monthly meetings and continually inspires women to excel with their contractors, community, and customers. Recently, Megan was awarded a plaque of appreciation for all the work she has done. The plaque was presented to her at the August 8, 2017, Carpenters Local 435 Union meeting. Her father, along with her UBC sisters from Carpenters Locals 435 and 373, were in attendance to witness her accepting the award. The award was presented to her by the officers of Carpenters Local 435, several IKORCC representatives, and a special appearance by Teresa Moore, the IKORCC S.I.B. chairperson.

It is an honor to have this young lady go from an apprentice, journeyman, to newly a signatory contractor for our organization. The IKORCC looks forward to seeing great things come from her in the future and wishes her the best in her career!