The new ASCA Action Network (AAN) program is seeking members. This state-based initiative is intended to build support at a grassroots level for legislative initiatives that will improve the environment you do business in. To date, the ASCA has been successful in getting tort-reform legislation introduced at the federal level. At the state level, the association has gotten bills introduced in Illinois and New Jersey that would eliminate hold-harmless agreements from your winter service contracts. When adopted, this legislation will have an immense impact on how you do business by essentially placing the job of winter snow and ice mitigation into the hands of the professional, where it belongs.
“Our initial lobbying efforts at the national level have been successful in educating elected officials on the issues important to our industry,” says ASCA Executive Director Kevin Gilbride. “In addition, those new relationships have allowed the ASCA to get involved in tort-reform legislation that, if and when it’s made into low, could have a real impact not only on snow and ice management businesses, but all small businesses.
“We’ve used what has worked on the federal level to establishing our efforts and presence with state-level elected officials,” he adds. “There’s a lot at that level— such as introducing the hold-harmless legislation — that our industry can be involved in to promote and achieve change.”
Gilbride says the ASCA expects AAN will help rally support and influence state-level legislative officials. More details on the AAN program will be released in the coming weeks.
Strengthen your winter service contracts
The Accredited Snow Contractors Association (ASCA) announced it has collaborated with Josh Ferguson, an attorney with Philadelphia-based Kent/McBride P.C., to offer standard contracts and sub-contracts at a discounted cost to members. These template-style contracts include language to protect snow and ice management contractors both before and during litigation. In addition to the template contracts, alternative scope of work and indemnification language will be provided.
Attorney Ferguson works primarily in the areas of commercial premises, motor vehicle, contract, and construction defect litigation, and has litigated cases throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. He has also been retained as general counsel for a wide variety of businesses, including but not limited to those in the snow removal and landscaping industries. As a result of his experience he has created thorough contracts that will help protect your business and also potentially reduce your insurance premium.
The new standard contract or sub-contract is available for $500, or both contracts are available for $750. As these contracts are templates it is recommended that contractors have all contracts reviewed by their attorneys to ensure compliance with state and local laws and ordinances. Attorney Ferguson’s general counsel services will be offered to ASCA members at $150/hour, a significant rate reduction. If you have further questions, please contact Ferguson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The arrangement is just another asset available to ASCA members that not only strengthens their business operations, but also helps curb frivolous slip-and-fall claims, Gilbride says.
“Frivolous slip-and-fall claims have led to not only skyrocketing insurance costs, but has forced insurance providers from the market, all of which negatively impacts the ability of snow and ice management contractors to provide a vital winter service,” he says. “Strengthening winter service contracts with accurate and appropriate language is just another weapon our industry has to fight these often bogus claims.”
Got your ASCA gear? Enter bit.ly/1Fg7W7F into your web browser to find all of your association gear. We’ve got everything from ballcaps to backpacks.
“Members have been asking us for some time how they can get their hands on ASCA wearables and gear,” Gilbride says. “We’ve collaborated with apparel provider Stuart & Associates to provide a wide variety of high-quality merchandise.”
For example, check out this stylish OGIO Ladies Gauge Polo (SA# 441653)
Break away from the ordinary in this button-down style that features cuffed ¾ sleeves.
- 5.9-ounce, 94/6 poly/spandex jersey with stay-cool wicking technology
- OGIO heat transfer label for tag-free comfort
- Self-fabric rounded button-down collar with collar stand
- 7-button placket with metal buttons
- Pleat at back yoke
- Button on back of collar
- Double-needle stitching on placket, shoulders, yoke, sleeves and hem
- Cuffed ¾-sleeves with metal buttons
- Heat transfer OGIO badge at hem
ASCA Report available to Snow readers
The ASCA is making its monthly enewsletter available to non-members, including readers of Snow Magazine.
“Initially the ASCA’s enewsletter was a way for us to communicate with association members updates on what we were doing, important dates to consider and developments in our educational programming,” Gilbride says. “Since its inception the ASCA Report has evolved to become an informational resources that we believe any member of the snow and ice management community may find valuable and helpful.
Subscribing to the ASCA Report enewsletter is easy and takes only a few minutes. Simply enter bit.ly/ZBjBu6 into your web browser to be taken to a subscription page, complete the online form and submit. The whole process should take less than five minutes. The next ASCA Report enewsletter should arrive in your inbox later this month.
“One of the main tenets of the ASCA is to provide education to the snow and ice management community,” Gilbride says. “Opening up our enewsletter to the entire snow and ice community is just an extension of the mission.”