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HCSB press release


Volunteers Put New Roof on Pentagon

Small Business Committee praises roofing contractors' contribution to rebuilding

WASHINGTON — Chairman Don Manzullo (R-Ill.) and Ranking Democrat Nydia M. Velázquez (D-N.Y.) of the House Small Business Committee today praised the volunteer donations of labor, funds, and supplies by small roofing contracting companies — totaling almost a half a million dollars — which are being used to rebuild over an acre of the Pentagon's roof system damaged in the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Structural damage to the Pentagon caused by the crash of American Airlines Flight 77 was so severe it is likely that parts of three wings will need to be rebuilt. In addition, the fire caused by thousands of gallons of jet fuel destroyed over 40,000 sq.ft. of slate roofing, which now needs to be replaced.

U.S. roofing contractors, nearly all of which are small or family-owned businesses, responded by volunteering their labor and materials to rebuild the roof system over the Pentagon. The National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) negotiated an agreement with the Department of Defense to rebuild the Pentagon's roof system, and has raised nearly $400,000 in cash and supplies of the estimated $500,000 needed to complete the job. James Myers Company, Inc. of Beltsville, Md., a specialist in slate roofing, is the lead contracting company on the project and has been at work since mid-November.

"Everyone wants to participate in something useful during this national challenge," said Ranking Democrat Nydia M. Velázquez. "Some people donated to charities or gave blood. Now small businesses are volunteering their workers and supplies on one of the biggest contracting jobs ever — to replace over an acre of slate on the largest office building in the world. I'm sure every American can be proud of that."

"I applaud the response of the small business community to help in the national recovery effort," said Chairman Donald Manzullo. "The many small, family-owned enterprises that comprise American roofing contractors are contributing in a most beneficial way through their donations of workers and materials to rebuild a portion of the Pentagon's roof. This spirit of volunteerism is reflective of the American character to pull together in times of crisis. All Americans can take pride in how we are overcoming the current challenge."

The idea originated with Northern Virginia Roofing, a contracting company owned by a husband and wife team based in Falls Church, Va. They approached NRCA in the first week after September 11, wanting somehow to contribute to the recovery effort. Finally, they hit on the idea to "give the Pentagon a new roof." NRCA then made a proposal to the Defense Department, which soon accepted.

"We are very happy our members can participate in this important project, and we appreciate the Pentagon's willingness to let us move forward," said Bill Good, NRCA Executive Vice President. Good has spent months coordinating efforts on the Pentagon Project, which is scheduled for completion sometime in March 2002.

NRCA is an association of roofing, roof deck and waterproofing contractors. Founded in 1886, it now has nearly 5,000 members and estimates that NRCA contractors perform more than 60 percent of all roof system installations in the United States. More than 90 percent of roofing contracting firms are considered small businesses; many are family-run where family members work side by side to make their companies successful. NRCA contractors are privately held companies, and the average member employs 35 people during peak season with sales of approximately $3.5 million per year.

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