Volume 40,   Issue 12                      December  2005


AAMA Board Votes to End Consolidation Talks With WDMA
The board of directors of the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) has voted to suspend consolidation negotiations with the Window and Door Manufacturers Association (WDMA). The AAMA board also approved sending a letter addressed to the WDMA board outlining the reasons for the suspension of negotiations.

The letter was prompted by the airing of serious concerns by the WDMA consolidation team at the meeting held in Chicago in the fall, reported AAMA. AAMA says that these concerns re-opened compromises on several issues that had been reached earlier in the summer.

Concerning the issue of consolidation, Jeff Lowinski, acting president of the WDMA, made the following statement in the group’s November newsletter: “WDMA is extremely disappointed to learn that AAMA wishes to discontinue talks despite the progress made and our goal to favorably present the issue to the joint memberships at the February 2006 annual meetings. Although there remain some unresolved issues, WDMA assumed we were making progress … With all due respect intended, WDMA’s consolidation team strongly disagrees that ‘agreement’ was reached on several issues claimed by AAMA.”

Americas Glass Association Forms Fire & Safety Glazing Council
The Americas Glass Association (AGA), formerly known as the California Glass Association, has created a new division, the Fire & Safety Glazing Council (Council), designed to educate and inform the glass and glazing industry, building officials, designers and others about the development of fire and safety glazing codes and standards.
The Council’s voting composition is set up so that members of the steering committee represent a broad spectrum of the building industry. As part of its voting composition, each of the following categories will have one vote:
• Building official;
• Consumer advocate;
• Contract glazing;
• Design professional;
• Door and window industry;
• Facilities management;
• Fire marshal;
• Fire glass manufacturer;
• Glass association (AGA);
• Glass fabrication/distribution;
• Hospital;
• Insulating glass production;
• ICC representation;
• NFPA representation;
• Schools;
• Safety glazing manufacturer;
• Testing and third-party certification; and
• Window filming.

Donn Harter, president of the AGA, stressed that this make up will ensure that in no way can the council be dominated by any manufacturer or fabricator. He explained that in the past “distortion of the truth” has been a big issue when it comes to codes and standards development due to the processes being dominated by a manufacturer or fabricator.

“I’ve been around a long time to see how this can distort things,” said Harter. “We don’t want to stifle design, but we want to make it safe. Hopefully we can look [at codes and standards] more objectively and not be guided by profit.”

NFRC Non-Res Task Group Disbands, Reincarnated as Subcommittee
During the National Fenestration Rating Council's (NFRC) fall meeting, held November 29-December 2 in Santa Fe, N.M., a request to elevate the group's non-residential task group actions of the past year to the subcommittee level was approved. The change will allow the group to transition from a primarily discussion phase to a decision-making phase. 

The decision came as a result of the growing number of participants in the non-residential task group meetings. Typically, NFRC task groups have up to ten individuals involved; the non-residential task group had grown to approximately 50 individuals. They also agreed that moving the actions to the subcommittee would allow subcommittee members to streamline decisions and track actions through a formal voting process. 

"I think we're taking the right steps because the subcommittee structure allows us to take issues to ballot and reach consensus on items within the Component Based Certification Program," said Greg Carney, technical director for the Glass Association of North America and chair of the NFRC non-residential products task group.

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