Illegal Point Of View

WaterSense Is Common Sense

Stick With UPC, UMC

Keep In Touch

Illegal Point Of View

I enjoyed Jim Olsztynski’s editorial on illegal immigration (“Those Illegals We Can’t Live Without,” Editorial Opinion, November 2006).

How you feel about illegal aliens really depends on where you live. Since I live on the bor-der to Mexico, we have a lot of legal aliens who really object to the illegal ones.

I love the speaker at a session I was at recently that said: “How does the government know there are 11 million illegals? Did they count them as they came across the border? For all we know there could be 50 million here already.” That’s probably closer to the truth than the 11 million publicized.

What’s really a shame is the small number of criminals and troublemakers who give all the rest a really bad name in our society. Eighty-five percent of my crews are aliens, all proba-bly legal, because illegals don’t want to be this close to the border.

I find that the one law that sticks in most craws, legal and otherwise, is the law that states if a child is born to an illegal alien, it automatically has U.S. citizenship. That’s one reason our schools are overcrowded, and our medical system is strained.

We are the only country that I know of that has this ridiculous law, which makes a child le-gal to get a Social Security number, which than can be used by as many people as that parent wants to share it with. The IRS has a tremendous number of illegals using the same Social Security number, which is a valid number for only one child. I’m sure this issue will be around for as long as you and I are.

Jo Rae Wagner
CTO Inc.
Harlingen, Texas

WaterSense Is Common Sense

America’s water supplies are precious but not unlimited. Every drop counts. Water is the lifeblood for families, communities and ecosystems. Using it efficiently is everybody’s business. Increasingly, water and wastewater utilities, industry, and agriculture are relying on water efficiency as a low-risk and low-cost option to help meet growing demands.

Faced with rising demands for water and an increased need for wastewater treatment, it’s just common sense to use the water we have as efficiently as possible. Fortunately, new technologies are available to help. But how can people identify water-efficient products, services and techniques? Where will they go to find this information?

The WaterSenseSM label is a new voluntary partnership program recently launched by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. This labeling program will fill a much-needed information gap by linking water-efficient products and services directly to the nation’s consumers.

Efficient water use doesn’t mean asking consumers to make sacrifices. It is just a smarter way of accomplishing the intended purpose, whether it is better irrigation equipment, toilets that flush well with less water, or better controls on industrial cooling towers. Products and services meeting EPA’s efficiency criteria will save water without compromising perform-ance. Independent testing will ensure that products carrying the WaterSense label are not only water-efficient, but that they perform as intended.

WaterSense is common sense. You can do your part to help meet the nation’s water supply challenge. Beginning in early 2007, look for and purchase products and services having the WaterSense label. You’ll save water and also the energy needed to pump, treat or heat it. Often this means more money in your pocket. But more importantly, you’ll help ensure we have enough water to meet future water needs while protecting our natural environment.

Don Devine, President, Americas Bath and Kitchen, American Standard Companies Inc.
Chuck Clarke, Director Seattle Public Utili-ties
Benjamin Grumbles, Asst. Administrator for Water U.S. EPA

Stick With UPC, UMC

I just finished reading Katie Rotella’s news story in the October issue on the breakdown of negotiations between IAPMO and ICC regarding the joint national plumbing and mechani-cal codes. Very well done.

I would like to make a couple of comments. The ICC always runs its so-called government consensus flag up the pole as if it is something to be proud of when, in fact, it is not a con-sensus at all, nor is it a fair or efficient manner in which to develop a code.

The ICC is made up of building officials, not inspectors. As building officials, these mem-bers do not have extensive backgrounds in plumbing and mechanical and, therefore, are not qualified to be writing a plumbing or mechanical code. They also state that they have no economic interest in the outcome of the code. Again this is not true. These building officials (ICC) have a great economic stake in their codes. They write them, they sell them and then they enforce them.

It is a closed-loop system that gives them total control over the code enforcement and de-velopment process. The situation they promote is the equivalent of the police department writing the laws and then enforcing them. It is a dangerous situation.

On the other hand, IAPMO subscribes to a truly open, voluntary consensus code adoption process where all stakeholders do have a voice and a vote in the code development proc-ess. That is why contractors here in Arizona have fought so hard for so many years to keep the UPC and UMC as the mandated codes here.

Mark Giebelhaus
Marlin Mechanical Corp.

Keep In Touch

Editor’s note: This letter was sent to Dan Holohan, who shared it with us.

Just got the November issue of PM and read your “Second Friday Club” column and wanted to thank you. As co-owner of Sioux Chief Mfg. for more than 30 years and “retiring” in 2002 to another smaller manufacturer, taking additional time for Boy Scout work and ad-vising other family firms in the plumbing industry, etc., I seldom took the time to nurture friendships as you so well described in your column.

I got into the business in 1973 so we’re about the same age and, thus, your column, which I’ve always enjoyed, hit home. I even have a note on my desk that an old former rep from California called me some three months ago - and I haven’t returned his call yet. Shame on me. I’m calling today.

Thank-you for your valued contribution to our industry!

Mike Ismert
Schier Products
New Berlin, Wis.