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Production Jumps

usgsAugust 20, 2012 – Preliminary reports from the USGS indicate second-quarter production will take a sizable jump over the first quarter of the year. Crushed stone production will reportedly rise a healthy 47 percent over the first quarter; sand and gravel a whopping 63 percent; and cement 42 percent. Year over year the increases are much more modest, but still trend upwards. The rise mirrors an increase in housing starts and construction spending, and is a good sign coming in advance of any bump Map-21 may give the market.

Ryan Proposed Slashing Transportation Funding

paul-ryanAugust 15, 2012 – NSSGA reports it does not really know what to make of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), the presumptive GOP vice-presidential nominee. Ryan’s  selection as Mitt Romney’s running mate has raised concerns, or at least questions, in the transportation sector. The worry stems from Ryan’s budget proposal in 2011 that would have incurred a steep cut in transportation funding. In his post as House Budget Committee chairman, Ryan has twice tried to implement drastic cuts in transportation spending in a push to balance the U.S. budget.

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Getting Together Up North

seraLogoAugust 6, 2012 – Two are sometimes better as one. The Aggregate Forum of Ontario and Socially and Environmentally Responsible Aggregate Canada (SERA-Canada) will merge their non-profit organizations to better focus on developing voluntary social- and environmental-certification systems for the aggregateindustry in Ontario. Bill Galloway, senior vice-president at Holcim Canada Inc. and a SERA-Canada Board Member called the move “the right thing to do at the right time.” The two organizations will merge their boards to establish a "single world-class environmental and social certification system" for responsible aggregate extraction, permitting and operations.

Martin Marietta Rises

mmmAugust 1, 2012 – Martin Marietta Materials's second-quarter report indicates that things are best in the West. Earnings rose 2.8 percent as the company reported stronger shipments and pricing in its aggregates business, led by demand in the Western United States. Martin Marietta said it has seen continuing signs of recovery in certain markets, mostly in the western U.S., where aggregates shipments were up 7.6 percent.

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Going Up

McGraw-HillJuly 23, 2012 – While the impact of MAP-21 is still a long way off, it was good to see an uptick in McGraw-Hill's latest F.W. Dodge Report. Public works construction climbed 26 percent in June, led by a 129 percent surge for the "other public works" category, which includes such diverse project types as site work, mass transit, pipelines, and outdoor sports stadiums. A major boost to the "other public works" category in June was provided by $1.0 billion estimated for work on a new football stadium for the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara, Calif.

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