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The flaws of antitrust laws

The ready mixed and precast concrete supply chain shows nothing out of line with vendors holding low, middle or higher double-digit national market share, as material or equipment category leaders like BASF Admixture Systems, Holcim (US) Inc., Mack Trucks Inc., McNeilus Cos. and Command Alkon Inc. illustrate. 

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Court refuses to indulge claims of ‘meal period’ driver plaintiffs

A group of mixer truck drivers sought $6 million in a class action lawsuit, alleging former employer Granite Rock Co. violated California labor laws requiring off-duty meal periods or payment for duty-free meal periods. A Santa Clara County Superior Court decision issued last month suggests that instead of being awarded back pay and legal fee largesse, Driscoll et al. vs. Granite Rock plaintiffs and their counsel were handed their lunches.

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Building energy facts rise as judge dismisses LEED lawsuit

Findings from charter research projects at the two-year-old Concrete Sustainability Hub continue to validate longstanding industry claims on potential energy savings a home or building owner can realize with concrete structures. They surface as construction and real estate interests look beyond the style of green certification to the substance of hard energy-consumption numbers during a project’s use or operation phase.

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Valmont brand of green jobs links wind farms to population centers

There is much to recommend in our cover story subject, a sprawling spun cast prestressed pole plant (pages 22–26), the people who run it, and the NYSE-traded company behind it. Located on a 150-acre site, Valmont Newmark/Bellville is running new batching, mix delivery, placing and forming equipment to support one of the more promising product categories in prestressed concrete.

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Highway funding faces perfect storm

The slight, gradual rebound in projected 2011-12 concrete demand has given way to a nearly flat outlook for the period, after a downgraded forecast Portland Cement Association released late last month. Chief Economist Ed Sullivan attributed highway-funding legislation uncertainty in calling for a 0.6 percent 2011-12 cement consumption increase over a 2009-10 trough. A previous forecast that might have seen cement shipments this year and next combine for an 8–10 percent gain factored a 20 percent increase in federal highway funding, which PCA now sees will continue at its present level.

Read more: Highway funding faces perfect storm