Current Print Newsletter

Winter 2016 MSA Print Newsletter

     We are pleased to introduce to you, David Bruneau, who has accepted our offer for the Executive Director position that will be vacated once Mike Schmaltz retires this year at the end of June.  We took great care in this search because, as many of you know, Mike has been essential in the growth and success of the MSA.
     A special thank you goes to Russ Byers for Chairing the Executive Director Search Committee and also the committee members for their time spent in finding Mike’s replacement. 
     David comes to us with the skills and talents to help manage and promote the Minnesota Subcontractors Association.  He will head the executive department and be responsible for managing our volunteer committee groups.  He’ll serve as the main public contact and spokesperson for the organization, and will represent the association and all professional business capacities.  We feel his personality will be a great fit for our organization. 
     On a personal note, many of you will relate to David’s love of coaching youth hockey with his children, 7, 5, and 18 months. 
     David’s first official day is February 1st at which time he will start training with Mike Schmaltz.  Please take some time to contact the office at (763) 413-0669 and set up a time to meet with David to welcome him on board and help him better understand your individual business concerns and accomplishments.


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Legislative Update

MSA made a difference for subcontractors by actively promoting legislative reforms in Indemnification and Retainage.  Effective August 31, 2016 Retainage was reduced to 5% for Minnesota work.

MSA members worked hard to enact these reforms but they would not have passed were it not for hard work by key legislators.  Their efforts often span several legislative sessions, require an understanding of subcontractor concerns and involve considerable behind the scenes work with many other groups and legislators.

This year MSA is recognizing:

  • Senator Vicki Jensen, Owatonna
  • Senator Kevin Dahle, Northfield
  • Senator Dan Sparks, Austin
  • Representative Bob Loonan, Shakopee
  • Representative Jason Rarick, Pine City

This award is given in recognition of outstanding legislative work that leads to vital reform for the construction industry.  Their leadership has improved Minnesota's construction industry for thousands of subcontracting businesses and families.

As Subcontractors know, work remains on these and many other issues.  In addition to saying a sincere thank you for their hard work we know we have strong supporters to ensure that those reforms remain effective in the face of evolving industry practices. 

MSA’s mission: By advocating fairness as the bedrock principle; the MSA goal is to establish the best possible public and business environment to enable success of all parties in a construction transaction.

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T.O.P.S. Awards Gala

MSA 16th annual T.O.P.S. event will be on Tuesday January 24, 2017.  This prestigious event is our opportunity to recognize best practices by General Contractors and their key employees.  Several years ago we added Project Manager, Construction Superintendent , and Construction Professional awards.  We will be adding a Safety Professional award this year as well.

Past award winners have expressed deep appreciation for the honor.  Please CLICK HERE to cast your nominations. Please take time from your busy schedule, give some thought to the companies and key players you would like to see recognized and nominate them.

* Have a college student employee/child enrolled in a construction or building trades major in college? 
They qualify for a chance at one of three scholarships being awarded. 
CLICK HERE for details & application (please forward this link to the student).

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Member News

Schadegg Mechanical Inc. Growth Recognized

The Minneapolis/St Paul Business Journal regularly lists companies and individuals that stand out if various industries.  The fastest growing private companies; the "Fast 50", in the Twin Cities Metro Area was one of the most recent lists.  MSA member Schadegg Mechanical was included on the list with a 47.6% growth rate.

According to the article, the single most important business decision leading to this growth was a doubling of their fabrication capacity with the addition of a their new building.  Founded in 1997, Schadegg currently employs 162 and had 2015 revenue of $78 million. 

It was interesting to note that the field was dominated by technology companies.  There was only one other construction company on the list. 

Vogel Mechanical, Inc.  selected as Woman Pioneer Award Winner

NAWBO, the National Association of Women Business Owners- Minnesota Chapter announced 2016 Achieve Award Winners.  MSA member Vogel Mechanical, Inc. CEO, Bonnie Vogel, was selected as Woman Pioneer Award Winner.  A presentation celebration was held  October 26th at Midpointe Event Center.  The Annual Achieve! Awards celebrates those successful women who have made great strides and seen significant success in their businesses. 

In 2015 Vogel Mechanical, Inc. celebrated the 20th Business Anniversary in conjunction with the ribbon cutting and grand opening of the new Roseville facility.  

Ryan Cos. US CEO Pat Ryan Selected as 2017 Executive of the Year:

The Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal selected Ryan Cos. US Inc. President and CEO Pat Ryan as its 2017 Executive of the Year.

"Ryan is the Business Journal's 41st Executive of the Year honoree, joining an elite group of top executives. The award highlights the outstanding professional and personal accomplishments of Minnesota's business leaders who head the state's largest companies. Previous honorees have included U.S. Bancorp's Richard Davis and Mary Brainerd of HealthPartners"

Your company in the news?

Let us know.  MSA members are continuously recognized by outside organizations for outstanding business achievement.  Send the information to

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On The Level

MSA is working on our the next edition of our quarterly newsletter "On the Level".   We are reaching out to members for articles.  Materials submitted must be pertain to the subcontractor concerns and interests. Please email to The deadline for submissions is November 11, 2016

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Calendar of Events

  • Tuesday, November 8 - Protecting Your Payment Rights: Using Mechanic's Liens and Contract Clauses to Maximinze Your Leverage. CLICK HERE for details and to register.

  • Thursday, November 17 - Happy Hour Meet and Greet. Sponsored by Molin and Watson-Forsberg with Tri-Construction. CLICK HERE for details.

  • Tuesday, December 6 - Safety Network for MSA Members at Marsh & McLennan Agency. Details coming soon.

  • Tuesday, December 13 - Education Meeting. Details coming soon.


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and more...

1. Overtime - New Rules Effective Soon
The effective date of the final rule is December 1, 2016. The initial increases to the standard salary level (from $455 to $913 per week) and HCE total annual compensation requirement (from $100,000 to $134,004 per year) will be effective on that date. Future automatic updates to those thresholds will occur every three years, beginning on January 1, 2020.  Click here for additional Dept. of Labor information.

2. We need your help! - Minnesota Subcontractor Association Members 

You probably joined MSA for one of the following reasons:

  • Advocacy - on Retainage, Indemnification,  Payment Transparency etc.
  • Education - on Contract Language, Insurance, Safety etc.
  • Networking  - with General Contractors, other Subcontractors & Suppliers

We can do these things well  because we have a solid membership base.  That base is the root of our strength and effectiveness.  It is critical to continually build membership - with it we will do better and more.

Nothing is more helpful than your recommendation to another subcontractor or supplier.  We know you hear other subs talking about industry problems.  Whether it is coming out of a weekly construction project meeting or in some other setting - that is when you will hear the need.  That is your opportunity to introduce MSA.

Please take the time to:

  1.     Forward the names of 2-3 subcontractors or suppliers  you work with who share your concerns     to Fred Wessman  at
  2.     Forward the attached MSA information to those subcontractors

3. Fraud / Cyber News

Scams are in the news every week if not every day.  You are not too small to be a target. 

"60% of the small companies that suffer a cyber attack are out of business within 6 months".   Click here to read the Denver post article.

If you haven't been targeted by an phony IRS scam artist or if you don't know a small business or individual that hasn't been the target of cyber-piracy - look around

See the following from Dave Bell, President of Cyber Solutions for more specific recent scams:

Phony CP2000 Scam

There is an insidious new IRS scam making the rounds. You may be sent a phony IRS CP 2000 form which claims the income reported on your tax return does not match the income reported by your employer.  It’s an attempt to prey on your emotions. To confuse you further, the bad guys claim this has something to do with the Affordable Care Act. 

You might receive emails with attached phony forms, text messages and even live calls to your phone about this.  Yes, live calls.  These guys are getting even more bold.  It’s important to know that the IRS will never initiate contact with you to collect overdue taxes by an email, text message or phone call. 

If you get any emails, text messages, old-time snail mail or even live calls about this, do not respond and/or hang up the phone. If you receive a "CP 2000" form in the mail and doubt this is legit, you can always call the IRS at 1-800-366-4484 to confirm it is a scam. 

AppleApp Phishing Attack

A new phishing attack is using a very realistic-looking Apple App Store message to trick you into trying to prevent getting charged for something you did not buy. This attack may make it through spam filters into your inbox so definitely be on the lookout. 

This phishing attack tries to convince you to fill out a page with your full address and credit card information so that you "will not get charged".   As you may have guessed already, it would be a bad idea to enter the information. 

Best practice reminder:  Never click on links in emails to go to a vendor's website. Always use your browser and either type in the address of the company or use a bookmark you have set yourself earlier

See for free tips, tools & services

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