Metal theft has become a growing problem in the United States as material costs continue to rise. One of NECA’s active members, Duane Hendricks, Executive Vice President of Egan Company, a member of the Minneapolis Chapter, NECA, is speaking out on the issue and is working with a member of Congress to address this problem. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) recently visited Egan Company where she saw firsthand how businesses that use metal for construction can be financially affected by this crime. As a result, Sen. Klobuchar last year introduced the Metal Theft Prevention Act and hopes to get more support for legislation this year. Her proposal seeks to make metal theft from critical infrastructure sites a federal crime and would also tighten rules to make scrap metal more difficult to sell.
Noting that 25,000 insurance claims due to metal theft were filed in 2012 alone, the senator said, "It's more than just a blip on a the radar screen. This is an ongoing escalating problem."
Hendricks said, "A lot of what this bill is proposing is already being done in Minnesota. If we can get this bill at a federal level and it could get national support it would help hold accountability so people wouldn't be able to get rid of stuff as easily as they can currently."
Through the involvement of NECA members like Hendricks, NECA is able to have an impact on issues affecting the construction industry.