The DROPCLOTH Covers Everything


Volume 59, Number 3
Summer, 2004

Go to Home Page Display Calendar of Meetings and Events View the Photo Gallery Go to Dropcloth Newsletter Menu Display Monitor Newsletter
New! Register for an Event Display PDCA History Display FCA History Display PDCA Directory
Display PDCA Contract Display Chicago PDCA Bylaws Display Forms to Download Go to Industry Links Page Guide to Hiring a Contractor


Am-Coat Advertisement Ascher Advertisement Hester Advertisement

Chicago PDCA/FCA launched its new advertising program with this series of three ads running in Crain's Chicago Business.

For the last three years, Chicago PDCA/FCA and its Industry Advancement Fund have run two series of high-profile radio commercial programs on WGN Radio 720 AM and WBBM NewsRadio 780 AM. The radio spots were well received, creating a clear new presence in the marketplace for Union Painting Contractors.

The radio spots highlighted professionalism, training, and quality workmanship as the trademarks of Union Painting Contractors to contrast with the non-Union competition.

This year, the Board determined to follow through on the radio campaign with a new series of print ads,

beginning with space in Crain's Chicago Business. The first three ads appeared in June and July, with more to follow at regular intervals. The first trio featured contractor member projects in commercial, residential, and industrial sectors.

Common to all three ads, the slogan "Not many contractors can paint one of these..." will repeat on all advertisements run during the program. If your company belongs to Chicago PDCA/FCA and you wish to participate in developing new print ads, call the PDCA/FCA office at 630/393-1313 to inquire. There will be other Chicago trade publications included in the mix as time goes by.

Clearbrook Golfers Group Photo


Chicago PDCA/FCA fielded two foursomes in the Clearbrook Home Charitable Golf Outing on June 7th at the Chevy Chase Country Club in Wheeling. Golfers included (left to right): Karen Campbell, Karen Volkmer, Kathy Maiello, Kathy Lundeen, Lynn Galdoni, Jacquie Guerrieri, Candy Schultz, and Diane Meyer, with golf pro Nicole Jeray.

Paint Spots Miscellany Paintbrush Image

According to the experts, people over 30 should not have survived this long. Here's why. According to today's regulators and bureaucrats, those of us who were kids in the 40's, 50's, 60's, suffered too many hazards to survive. Our baby cribs were covered with lead-based paint. We had no childproof doors, cabinets, or medicine bottle lids, and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets. As children, we rode in cars with no seatbelts or air bags...and riding in the back of a pickup truck on a warm day was always a special treat. We drank water from the garden hose, not from a bottle. We ate cupcakes, bread and butter, and drank soda pop with sugar in it, but we were never overweight because we were always outside playing. We shared a single drink with four friends from one bottle, and no one actually died from this. We spent hours building go-carts out of scraps and then rode down the hill, only to find out we forgot about brakes; running into the bushes a few times taught us how to solve that problem. We left home early in the morning and played all day, as long as we were back when the street lights came on. No one could reach us all day, because there were no cell phones. There was no Playstation, Nintendo 64, X-Box, or video game to play with. No cable channel, video tape movie, surround sound, personal computer, or Internet chat room occupied our time. We had friends! We went outside to find them. We played dodge ball, and sometimes, the ball would really hurt. We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth, and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. No one was to blame but us. We had fights and punched each other and got black and blue and learned to get over it. We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and ate worms, and although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes, nor did the worms live inside us forever. We rode bikes or walked to a friend's home and knocked on the door, or rang the bell or just walked in and talked to them. Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't learned to deal with disappointment. Some students weren't as smart as others, so they failed a grade and were held back to repeat the same grade. Tests weren't adjusted for any reason. Our actions were our own, and consequences were expected. The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke a law was unheard of, because they actually sided with the law. The generations living since World War II produced some of the best risk-takers and problem solvers and inventors ever known, and the past 50 years have seen an explosion of innovations and ideas virtually unsurpassed in history. Maybe it was because we enjoyed freedom, suffered failure, sought success and assumed responsibility and learned how to deal with it all...before lawyers and government stepped in to regulate our lives for our own good.

Text Divider Line

Once again, the JATC Apprentice School in Berkeley seeks donations of 54" vinyl wallcoverings to use for training. Apprentices learn to hang 54" vinyl within their first 12 months of training, and are taught how to use all of the vinyl machines in qualifying to advance to the next rate of pay. If contractors are willing to donate leftover bolts of 54" vinyl material, the school can pick it up!

Text Divider Line

Biker Head Photo

This view was seen at the annual Sturgis, North Dakota, ride-in this year. Yes, it is the back of his head...

Text Divider Line

"Helmets to Hardhats" is a great new program designed to help servicemen returning from active duty transition back to civilian life by finding careers in construction. DOD, the Department of Defense, funds the program with Union and Contractor support. What's needed at this time is Contractor registration to build a list of potential employers. The registration is free, and there are no obligations to hire anyone. Once you have registered, you can post any job openings for free, allowing 20,000 very qualified candidates with military backgrounds to view your opportunities. If the foregoing sounds good, visit the web site and submit your Employer Registration.

Text Divider Line

OSHA 10-Hour and 30-Hour Training is now available on-line for free from the Joint Apprenticeship and Training Foundation (JATF). 3M Respiratory Protection Training Respirator Medical evaluations are also available at a 25% savings. Contact Mike Metz at the JATF by calling 202/637-0740.

Text Divider Line

Golfer on Mountain Top Photo

Lee Tew was seen playing out-of-bounds on his most recent golf trip to the Grand Canyon Golf Club...



Jay Weaver Photo

By Jay Weaver, Executive Director Of Industry Services,Finishing Contractors Association

An employer can contest OSHA violations despite a late filing of notice, according to a 6/9/04 finding of the the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, which held that an employer whose OSHA safety citations have been lost or destroyed can file a late notice of contest to the citations under the "excusable neglect" provision of the Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b)(1).

State "patients' rights laws" have been struck down due to a 6/21/04 decision of the Supreme Court, which vacated a Texas patients' rights law in a ruling that actually bars all states from letting patients sue their managed-care companies for a refusal to pay for treatment that allegedly results in death or injury. This decision denies the citizens of Texas and nine other states the individual right to sue health plans (AZ, CA, GA, ME, NJ, NC, OK, WA, and WV). What's next? A fight over a federal patients' bill of rights!

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce released a study showing the impact of the tort system on American businesses. The Chamber study claims that the tort system costs U.S. small businesses $88 billion a year, finding that the total annual cost of the tort system to U.S. businesses (large and small) is $129 billion a year. The interesting part is that small businesses (with $10 million or less in annual revenue) bear 68% of that cost, which boils down to about $150,000.00 per year for each small business.

Purchasing coalitions have grown steadily as health care insurance costs continue to rise. Many jointly-trusteed health & welfare funds are now viewing health care coalitions as a viable and cost-effective way to slow the increases in health care costs that have stymied many labor contract negotiators' efforts. For information, contact AFSCME, the
American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, at 202/429-1215.

Online local labor market statistics are now available with the launching on 6/1/04 of the new Census Bureau website. You can find it at:   to provide updated measurements of job markets in states and local areas. The Quarterly Workforce Indicators are now available for the first quarter of 2003 and the preceding 10 years organized by industry, age group, and gender, for 19 states, including metropolitan areas and counties: CA, CO, FL, ID, IL, IA, KS, MD, MO, MT, NJ, NM, OR, PA, TX, VA, WA, WV, and WI.

BCTD, the Building Construction and Trades Department, alleges that ABC, the non-Union contractors' association, failed to pay taxes on revenue from health insurance sales. BCTD has alleged that 22 of ABC's 80 chapters have failed to pay taxes on profits from health insurance plan sales to their non-union members. This allegation comes just as a Senate bill (S.545) that is heavily supported by ABC, remains pending. The bill would allow small businesses to band together across state lines to purchase health care coverage through association health plans free from most state insurance mandates. ABC denies the charges.

The Department Of Labor's "IG" (Inspector General) Office says that problems persist with Davis-Bacon Wage Determinations. According to the IG Office, despite a 5-year, $22 million effort to improve the process, problems continue with the accuracy and timeliness of the wage and benefit data that is used to make prevailing wage determinations for construction workers under the Davis-Bacon Act. The IG report concluded that the solution to these problems is to change the fundamental methodology DOL's Wage and Hour Division uses to complete its survey.
Bruno Movrich Photo


Bruno Movrich, 87, loved his magic, whether performing fast sleight-of-hand tricks in a social setting or fooling the eye with his decorating wizardry with paint and wallpaper.

He was decades ahead of his time with using creative faux finishes and textured paints and glazes...working with fancy paint rollers in the days when you made your own roller covers... stunning people by covering the floor of his first store (back in 1955) with wallpaper.

When he was President of the Chicago PDCA organization, he was featured on numerous radio and television programs as a painting expert. He continued his relationships with friends in PDCA long after retiring with his dear wife, Jody, to a new home in sunny California...and was most recently seen at the 2001 Convention in Palm Springs.

Bruno was born and grew up on Chicago's Southwest Side, the son of Sophie and John Peter Movrich. He graduated from Sawyer Elementary School and Lindblom High School, and attended Washburne Trade School. His father was a painter employed by the Standard Oil Company to paint company wagons and, later, the trucks and cars. Bruno and his brother, Olympio, had a sideline business of wood graining the interior metal trim on vintage cars that lasted into the 1970's, as famous restorers of antique and classic cars would send them parts to decorate. "They never sent any samples," his son, Carl, recalls. They simply furnished the make and model, and my Dad and his brother did it all from memory."

Bruno started his paint and wallpaper decorating business in 1939, marrying Jody a year later after meeting her at Englewood Country Club, a social club that sponsored outings for horsebackriding and trips to the old White City amusement park.

He opened his first paint and wallpaper store in 1955 at 51st and Damen, giving the new showroom a touch of class with wallpaper laid over Masonite and heavily varnished. It held up for years.

He was always on the cutting edge, consulting on the design of spray painting equipment and handcrafting roller covers with lambskin. He devised his own stenciling techniques using a toothbrush.

Bruno worked on both private homes and businesses. Among his famous customers were the parents of Chicago Daily News foreign correspondent Georgie Anne Geyer. Geyer, a syndicated columnist, later took both of the Movriches on a trip to China.

Bruno painted the interiors of many Kroger stores, decorated the Graham Room at the Lyric Opera, and painted the old Whiskey-a-Go-Go disco in the Rush Street nightclub district.

His inveterate love for magic drew him into the International Brotherhood of Magicians, and his was active in the Stockyards area Kiwanis Club and a Director of the Boys & Girls Club.

Ben Sniegowski Remembered...

Bernard "Ben" Sniegowski began his working life as a painter following military service in World War II, and climbed the ranks of his Union to become a top international official.

Mr. Sniegowski, 86, of Westchester died on July 14th at Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood. "He always supported labor, and that was a big thing for him," observes his daughter, Susan Maczak.

Ben, as he was known to friends and associates, was born and raised in the Pilsen neighborhood, leaving Harrison High School after one year to work. During World War II, he was drafted into the Navy and served 3 years in the Pacific on the destroyer USS Laws.

In 1945, Ben returned to Chicago and started his career working as a painter and member of the International Brotherhood of Painters and Allied Trades, Local 180.

In 1946, he married Dolores Bilek, whom he had met about 10 years earlier while working at a concession stand at Union Station. The couple moved to Westchester in 1960 and raised their family in that community.

In 1954, he became Vice President of Local 180, a spot that he held until 1958, when he became a Business Representative of Painters District Council No. 14. Ben rose to become the new Secretary-Treasurer of PDC14 in 1965, and held that position until 1974, when he became General Vice President of the International Brotherhood of Painters and Allied Trades, the parent organization based in Washington. He remained in that post until his retirement in 1989.

"Ben was a true gentleman of the old school," recalls Lee Tew (J.M. Brennan & Company), who knew him well and once participated in contract negotitations with him. "He was a man of his word."

During his years as a Union official, Ben was a Trustee of the Chicago Painters and Decorators Pension Fund and the Chicago Building Trades Council. He also served as Executive Vice President of the Chicago Port Council and, under the late Mayor Richard J. Daley, as a member of the Chicago Building Code Committee.

Other survivors include two granddaughters, Beth Edmonds and Lauren Maczak, and many nieces and nephews. A mass was offered in his memory at the Divine Infant Church in Westchester.


Tony Munari Photo

Painters' District Council No. 14 Business Agent Tony Munari passed away this June, following his prolonged and courageous battle with cancer. Within our industry, Tony was the rare individual who surmounted everyday tensions and routinely maintained courteous, respectful relationships with labor colleagues and management associates alike through the power of his warm and charming disposition, dedication to duty, humanity, and great common sense...leaving behind a legacy of friends who will miss him terribly.

Tony attended St. Anthony Catholic grammar school in the Roseland area from 1945 to 1953 and Fenger High School in Chicago from 1953 to 1957. He moved up to Washburne Trade School, becoming an Apprentice in 1958. His career as a working painter began with with J. M. Brennan & Company and continued with Oosterbaan & Sons through 1978. From 1978 to 1986, he worked at the University of Illinois Hospital.

Tony was very active with Local Union No. 265 and held various positions in that organization, including Warden, Trustee, Examining Board Conductor, and Recording Secretary, until becoming a Business Agent and President of the Local in October of 1986, replacing Pete Herbert.

He became a Trustee for the Health & Welfare Fund in 1989 and served in that additional capacity until 2002. He was active in the Chicago Building Trades and the Southside Safety Committee. Last December,

he received his 45-Year Union Membership Pin, and he continued working as a B.A. right up until the time of his passing.

Dedicated Union Man that he was, Tony attended his Local meetings every week and remained close to his members even as his career progressed and he worked his way up the ranks. He loved to play golf and go fishing, and, prior to becoming ill for the first time in the early 1990's, he was trying to get a pilot's license, using gift certificates from his son for the lessons. That plan was put on hold in 1993 due to his first bout with cancer.

The initial diagnosis that year was not good, but Tony was determined to find a doctor equipped with the same determination and resolve that he possessed. Simply put, he wanted to live, and he beat the odds for more years than he was supposed to...through sheer determination and personal faith.

During the remaining years that Tony was given, he maintained an invariably cheerful and positive outlook, finding excitement and joy in every single day, often responding when asked how he was doing, "I'm still alive, and I can't ask for much more than that!"

In fact, he was undergoing excruciatingly extensive treatments, including chemotherapy and bone marrow transplants...maintaining his positive mental attitude throughout and a cheerful disposition for two hard years until beating his first round with cancer in 1995.

An intense desire to see his Grandchildren fueled this determination to survive, and he did whatever it took to stay with his family. Daily work and occasional travel commitments never distracted his consideration and care for others, however, or caused him to focus solely upon himself. As a small measure of those caring ways, he never attended an IUPAT Convention or other out-of-town event without bringing back little presents for the ladies who worked at the PDC14 office. He mentored many who needed his help, never asking for anything in return. To the end, he remained a caring, affectionate gentleman who lived out his life with class and dignity.

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo


JUNE 4, 2004

The sun shone down for the first time in years as pros and duffers gathered from the entire Chicagoland Painting and Decorating Industry to hit 'em hard at Indian Lakes Resort on June 4th. Cloudless skies and crisp weather swept away memories of the last three "wet" outings, all truncated to less than 18 holes of play. A record $9400.00 was raised in sponsorships to help fund the event, which resulted in a bottom line profit of $2,175.00 for the Association after a donation of $500.00 for a Hole Sponsorship was forwarded to the Clearbrook Home for the Handicapped Golf Outing Committee.

Games included Longest Drive, Closest-to-the-Pin, Accurate Drive, Hit-the-Dropcloth, Longest Putt, and Split the Pot Contests, plus a cash-back challenge on the Putting Green. Following a festive picnic lunch, drawings were held for 15 Indian Lakes Gift Certificates, leading up to a Grand Prize drawing for a set of Wilson titanium irons with graphite shafts, provided by the Wilson Sporting Goods Company, which was won by Justin Avey, of Service Drywall Co., Inc., and presented by prize coordinator Jim Gasparro (Benjamin Moore & Company), who is Vice President of the Associates Group.

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Golf Outing Photo

Bob Runge Winner Photo


Bob Runge (Service Decorating Co., Inc.) won the drawing for a beautiful set of Wilson Tier Two irons with graphite shafts, presented to him by Associates Group Vice President Jim Gasparro (Benjamin Moore & Company).

Don't Miss This Important Meeting...Call 630/393-1313 Today For Reservations!


Call 630/393-1313 today to secure your place at the table as Chicago PDCA/FCA joins forces with the NiPDi/PDCA/FCAI organization for a Joint Membership Meeting!

September 9, 2004

  • 5:30 P.M. Cocktails
  • 6:30 P.M. Dinner
  • 7:30 P.M. Program

Maggiano's Little Italy
240 Oakbrook Center
Oak Brook, Illinois