The ECA just held its annual strategic planning session with the new Board of Directors and our new President, Josh Cleaver of BoDean Co., led a great discussion in laying the groundwork for the next few years.
Our focus was to understand what is important to our members as regards what the ECA does and how we do it. To that end, we put out two Surveys in our Newsletter in December and asked the members to respond. We only got 12 responses. That is not much direction for our Board to go on, but we considered those responses as we discussed our Mission, our Vision and our Value statements. Here is a summary of what we concluded.
We started out the session with a few defining explanations of what a mission, vision and value statement is. Basically, the Mission Statement defines what you are doing now for your members. The Vision Statement differs from the Mission Statement in that the Vision is what do you see as the “finish line” accomplishment for the organization. The Value statement(s) describes your core values that you want the organization to adhere to while on the “journey” in operating to your mission and getting to your vision.
Just that bit of introspection might be useful in all of your own firms to reflect on from time to time. From my perspective, times are changing very fast and it is enticing to change with those which can make you lost sight of your “end game” as well as possibly losing sight of what your core values might be. It is also very important to have input from your “influencers” in your company, and for the ECA those “influencers” are, quite naturally, our Officers and our Board of Directors. Just so you know who your ECA Officers and Directors are for 2021, you can click on this link and the entire list of these folks are there for your reading pleasure.
I will say the Directors that participated were engaged, and very much involved in sharing their thoughts on what is important to the ECA members today, tomorrow, and how we achieve our vision. Interestingly, when we got to the point of discussing our Value Statement(s), we fell back on what our Founders decided was important 45 years ago when we were first incorporated as the Northern California Engineering Contractors Association.
New Mission Statement: ECA exists to support the local Engineering Contracting Industry
New Vision Statement, The ECA fosters a sustainable environment ensuring the strength and success of ECA members while building the community and protecting the environment
Value Statements we adopted –
- Having a unified voice that represents the best interests of our members when the ECA speaks with, and collaborates with, local policy and decision makers.
- Cultivate collaboration with elected officials by giving back to charitable organizations within the community.
- Communicate relevant issues back to our ECA Members that are being considered by local policy makers that could effect our ECA Members’ employees, equipment, and how they are able to perform their work.
- Networking opportunities for ECA Members via our events hosted during the year.
- Strive to increase our strength of message by cultivating collaborative relationships with like minded groups and associations.
- Provide a means for the public and local government to utilize our ECA Members’ vast knowledge and capabilities for mitigating emergency work in an efficient and rapid manner.
What remains to be done is to meet again and decide on the “tactics” to achieve our mission, vision and adhere to our values. The tactics actually become the “nuts and bolts” of how we operate so they are very important. They basically keep the Mission, Vision, and Values “front and center” and define how to progress. Tactics should be like goals measurable as to accomplishing those results, they should adhere to a timeline so there is a period of time that the measurable progress should adhere to, and they should have identified who is responsible for the measurable progress.
By taking these very important steps with the leadership of the ECA this week, we continue what Past President Dave Weller of RCX, and I set out to do in 2020. Our excuse in not getting it done last year has something to do with this thing called the COVID19 pandemic. I am very proud that this year’s President Josh Cleaver and this year’s Board of Directors rolled up their sleeves and got so much accomplished on Tuesday!
We definitely did not get confused by activity vs accomplishment. We got “SH%t” done!
That’s all folks!
Where and When Do YOU Get Vaccinated?
Sonoma County Emergency just went live with their Covid-19 Vaccination Website last week, and we had a 2 ½ hour Zoom meeting with Dr. Mase and Barbie Robinson from SoCoHealth last night to explain how vaccinations are being rolled out in SoCo. It is, to say the least, complex. See how nice I am in 2021? Anyway-here is the “lowdown”:
The supply of Covid-19 vaccines in the USA is limited at this point. Patience is urged. Vaccination doses come into the State of California from the Feds, then the State distributes them to the Counties (more or less) based upon population. The State and Federal guidelines as to who gets priority administration of the vaccines are how the County is allocating the vaccinations.
In Sonoma County-To find out what your vaccination eligibility is, go to
In Marin County- To find out what your vaccination eligibility is, go to
In Napa County-go to
COVID-19 -19 Facts
- After a natural infection, for some individuals, non-infectious viral particles can shed for weeks or months. The COVID-19 PCR test amplifies the genetic material from the virus and makes it very sensitive at picking up very small viral fragments and therefore can be positive for weeks to months after the infection, even though the person is not actively infected or contagious. Because of this, it is too confusing to retest at any time and don’t recommend people get tested if they have had a laboratory documented COVID-19 infection.
- Generally, use the rule of thumb of 10 days after onset of symptoms (or date of initial COVID-19 test if asymptomatic) as the period in which someone could be contagious or spreading the virus to others. Afterwards, that person should be able to rest assured they are no longer a risk of spreading the disease or contracting the disease.
- Although there has been a recorded case of an individual who was reinfected with a documented different viral strain, it is so exceedingly rare to be non-existent and I think the science will show a long-term immunity with the natural infections. It may turn out to be true that mild or minimally symptomatic infections give people a shorter immunity and therefore we are recommending vaccination even if someone has had the natural infection because we have clear science behind the immune response (and likely long-term protection).
The ECA Spec Committee continues to make progress on a very complex issue-private fire line submittals linked to encroachment permits linked to building permit issuance. To that end, I met with The Construction Coalition Thursday, January 21, 2021 on a Zoom conference with Gabe Osborn and Jessee Oswald from the City of Santa Rosa. The problem is the three permits have to work together. What we would like to see is the Civil Engineers prepare a drawing initially showing the footprint of the proposed building and the water/sewer/fire line underground shown in sufficient detail to get the fire line permit approval as well as the encroachment permit approval which should enable the building permit to be issued. The 2-month turnaround for fire permitting permits to be issued is too long, particularly when you add to that the time for encroachment permit and building permit issuance (which right now are lined up one behind the other). The permitting process could take, and sometimes does take, 6 months to get through. That means the occupancy of the proposed improvements are delayed from the owner being able to get a renter in place, so income is coming in and that is sometimes enough to make the project not “pencil out”. We are trying to speed up that process.
To that end, we are proposing the SR Fire Marshall consider approving a standardized set of details and notes that would couple with a site plan that shows the underground fire line along with sewer and water lines. We can handle the fire sprinkler submittal as a deferred submittal to follow. Gabe and Jessee and Ian Hardage all seem to be willing to work with us and are. We are perhaps a few weeks from seeing some legit action on this issue.
The comments from Jessee Oswald and Gabe Osborn was to the effect that the interaction between the City and the ECA is ALWAYS of tremendous value and that some issues are complex and take time to deal with. We should not get frustrated by our seemingly lack of progress on this issue as we are actually making progress. Sometimes it is the act of proceeding with the staffers that is the direct benefit as much as any end result in changing the permit process. I totally get what they are saying, and I agree with them. With that said, we are “deliciously” close to getting some action done on this issue! Stay tuned!