January SCECA General Meeting

Meeting Details


Thursday, January 18, 2024


7:00 PM


Courtyard Marriott
5000 Express Dr. S, Ronkonkoma, NY 11779
(Next to Red Lobster and Smokey Bones)

Program Topic:

This month, SCECA will be hosting Brian LeDonne of PS Digital who will be presenting a workshop on how to leverage digital marketing. This will be a great opportunity to find out about how to use Google and other digital tools to boost your business.

Vendor of the month:

Vendor of the Month: Joseph Christiano of ABB who will be showcasing the following products: -PowerMark Pro plug on neutral load centers -Circuit breakers, including e-breakers and new tandem/quad launch -Surge Protective Devices -Modular Metering – new product launch! -AC Disconnects -Gen/heavy duty safety switches ***Also, anyone that shows up with a business card can leave it at Joe's table for a chance to win a PowerMark Pro plug on neutral load center. Drawing at the conclusion of our presentation.

Food Provided By:

N&S Supply

Meeting Minutes


S.C.E.C.A. General Membership Meeting Minutes

There were approximately 35 members in attendance. Those Officers and Board of Directors present were: Ro Szalay, Rob Tschoke, Dave Kennedy, Ralph Lambiase, Brian McAuliff, Jack Morrell, Tom Orlando and Mahesh Panchal.

Excused: Joe Mikulas.

Called to Order: 7:21 p.m.

Rob Szalay led the Pledge of Allegiance. A motion to accept the General Meeting Minutes of 11/16/23 was made by Rob Tschoke and seconded by Tom Orlando.

**President’s Report:

Rob S. asked everyone to either turn their phones off or put them on vibrate. He introduced two companies that will be doing programs tonight. Brian LeDonne of PS digital and Joseph Christiano of ABB. He thanked them for joining us.


Treasurer’s Report: Tom Orlando

Tom O. reported since we did not have a general meeting in December, he will report on November and December. For the month ending November 2023 the income was $2,870 and the expenses were $18,512.93. The expenses were high because we had to pay NEL for half of the Energy Expo. For the month ending December 2023 the income was $1,480.37 and the expenses were $4,972.56. The Tom Palk Scholarship Fund is still open if anyone would like to donate. Other than that, all is well. A motion to accept the Treasurer’s Report for November and December was made by Steve Danielson and seconded by Brian McAuliff.

Secretary’s Report: David Kennedy

Dave thanked everyone for coming out. He showed a meter that was owned by Mike Krug. Mike Krug was our Treasurer for 41 years and his wife wants to see if we can raffle it off. It is a Simpson meter. We can start with $5 bid. This is something to put on a shelf for cool stuff. It does have to be calibrated. No one bid on it. Dave picks up the mail regularly. Most of it is bills, sometimes it is correspondence from people that want to sell us something. A motion to accept the Secretary’s report was made by Ralph Lambiase and seconded by Steve Danielson.

Legal Counsel: Michael Ganz

Mike Ganz was not present. Rob S. told members if they have any legal questions or comments, you can contact Mike. His email is in the “Light” and on our website.

Insurance: Patti Muldoon from Borg & Borg, Wally Boorum from Sunrise Benefits Solutions, Diane Mullahey-Senior from Executive Ins. & Financial Svcs.

Patti Muldoon and Diane Mullahey-Senior were not present. Rob S. announced Wally Boorum is now an advisor to our Board. Wally reported he tries to bring an educational piece to every meeting to help the members to spend money as wisely as you can. If you have an insurance guy you love, you can still ask Wally questions and he will try to help you figure it out. He wants to be a resource to the membership. Do not feel funny asking him.

PROGRAMS: Brian LeDonne gave an informative presentation on how to leverage digital marketing.
Brian is here with Lauren and they are a full-service marketing company. They give lots of tips and tricks on how to generate more leads. There are 5 things that he discussed. 1) Logo – everyone has one, 2) Google business profile of your company. This is the first impression everyone sees. He encouraged everyone to look at their business profile and see their reviews. 3) Website – Everyone’s website should be mobile optimized. It needs to be formatted correctly. 4) Reviews – showed how to generate more positive reviews to increase your ranking and how to import reviews to your website. 5) Google – one product is Ads which is paper-click – you can pick your location and areas you want to target. However, if your website is not mobile friendly you are wasting money. Their other product is Google local service ads. They guarantee a paper call model. You show up above the sponsored ad, you get a green check mark, you have to be vetted which takes about a week or two to process. Once you are up there depending on how many reviews you have, it is a game changer. You only share that space with 2 or 3 other companies. That is why it is important you have reviews above 4.5 average. The electrical industry has the lowest cost per call. You do not pay for wrong numbers or solicitations. He also encouraged all to educate their customers to write good reviews. Google has 90% of the market share. A question-and-answer session followed.

Joseph Christiano of ABB and his Northeast team gave an interesting presentation on ABB Residential Products & Technical Information. Joseph gave some background information on ABB. ABB was strong in Europe. They acquired Thomas & Betts. And were able to build up their marketing in the US with their strong distributor network. The company is organized into 4 global business areas: Electrification, Motion, Process Automation and Robotics and Discrete Automation. They work in electrification. They have numerous facilities in the United States. They are headquartered in North Carolina and have manufacturing there also. They have a main distribution center in Tennessee. They have a brand-new plant in Mississippi. They are the only ones building power breakers in the U.S. They showcased the following products: PowerMark Pro plug on neutral load centers, Circuit breakers, including e-breakers and new tandem/quad launch, Surge protective devices, Modular metering (new product launch), AC Disconnects and Gen/heavy duty safety switches. Also, anyone that shows up with a business card can leave it at his table for a chance to win a PowerMark Pro plug on neutral load center. Drawing at the conclusion of our presentation. A lively question and answer session followed.

By-Laws & Nominating: Jack Morrell

Jack announced if anyone has any by-laws to present, they are always open. And the floor is always open for nominations to the Board. It will officially open in April.

Education/Seminars: Rob Szalay, Mahesh Panchal, Ralph Lambiase

Rob S. reported our 1/27 CEH class is full. We now have a 2/17 class open. You do not have to take the classes just to renew your license. You can take them for education. You can sign up online. John Cangemi added they are covering residential One and Two Family until May. Then they will switch to a new topic. NYS is presently on the 2017 code. There is talk at this time we may be on the 2023 code later in 2024 or 2025 but he is skeptical. We may be giving summery on the 2020 or the 2023. But strictly as a summary. Jim Smith added if anyone wants them to cover a particular topic, let them know; maybe pools; something you do every day. Otherwise, they will pick the class topic. The problem is if the State goes to the 2023 code it includes the 2020 code changes. And some of the 2020 changes have been changed by the 2023 code so we will basically have to do both. So maybe we will phase in slowly some of the 2020 code and it will not be enforceable but maybe give you some of the major changes so that we are ready when the 2023 is adopted. This confuses a lot of guys. You are on the 2017 and you learn the 2020 which you cannot use and then you will have to learn the 2023 code. We try not to teach code that is not enforceable yet but because of the way the State does things they are leaving us in the lurch because this is two code changes to cover in maybe 90 days and we do not know when the State will change.

Electrical Safety: Robert Tschoke, Ralph Lambiase

Rob T. reported we have been discussing at the board meeting, thanks to Tom O., having a program on CPR and basic first aid training. He does not know if anyone has employees trained in this but thinks that is prudent in business. He will implement that and may hold something from the Red Cross here. He also wrote a good safety article that will be in the January “Light.” Also, everyone is familiar with 4” low voltage halogen lights. When you do not get those 2 prongs in all the way, it can smoke up. Be aware of this. This happened to him on a job site. He is an advocate of having fire extinguishers in his van. Make sure they are in your shop also.
Jack thinks we should change electrical safety to safety in general. This week there were two construction workers killed. One accident happened in St. James. He was buried 18 feet doing excavation work. The 2nd guy got squished in a hangar door at the old Grumman site. We always talk about electric, but it should be about safety in general. Both of these instances could have happened to any one of us. Rob T. added if anyone has anything on safety, direct it to him. He wants to hear feedback.

Entertainment: Dave Kennedy, Scott Eastman, Mahesh Panchal

Dave reported we had a nice time at Smokey Bones for our Christmas party. We have nothing planned yet for the installation dinner. Will keep everyone informed.

Good & Welfare: Joe Mikulas

Joe was not present. Tom DiBella of PSEG reported Rich Inserra is on the mend and should be back as soon as he can. Jack added that Rich is available for phone calls and emails; he likes talking to people. Rob S. and Ralph spoke to him also. He is doing well. Rob Ceriello reported one of their inspector’s (Eric) mom passed away.

Inspection Agencies:

Certified Electrical Inspectors: #896-A Rob Ceriello was present. He has nothing new on violations.
East End Inspection Agency: #1193-A Ed Seltenreich was not present.
EII: NYBFU: #1109-A Philip Goehring and Rich Jendzo were not present.
Suffolk Bureau of Electrical Insp.: #856-A Gene Surdi was not present.
Long Island Electrical Inspectors: (Bay Shore): #1178-A Joe Deubel was not present.
Southampton Town: Ron Linsalato was not present.
Alliance Electrical Inspect. Ltd.: Michael Dumitru was not present.
Electrical Inspection Service (of East Patchogue): Not present.

Licensing: Jack Morrell, Rob Szalay

Jack reported that unfortunately we are one of the only two states on the 2017 code. Almost everyone else is on the 2020 code. This has created a lot of issues with continuing education. We are trying to make it work for everybody. All of the providers of the CEH classes have been teaching the 2017 code for 6 years. An email went out to all the providers advising them to give us the classes for us to approve you want to teach. It was not mandatory to teach the 2020. But make sure you advise everyone that NYS still follows the 2017 code. They do not want the 2020 and 2023 taught at the same time. They want to give the providers at least 7 to 8 months to teach the 2020. And hopefully by August or September when the State may adopt the 2023 code at that point the providers will be allowed to teach the 2023 code. There are a lot of changes in the 2020 code and some of them will go away in the 2023 code. But you have to learn them to know what came in and what went out. Jack thought it better to teach 2020 and then when we find out when 2023 takes effect, teach that. That was the best scenario they came up with. Steve Danielson said it used to be easy finding the code changes online but now he cannot find them. John Cangemi said the IAEI has it on their website. Jack reported that for 12 years the Department of Labor was integrated with Consumer Affairs to save money and it did not go well. The word now is they will be separating the Department of Labor from Consumer Affairs. Also, the Licensing Board cannot changes laws unless it goes through the legislature. The group that is there now will take a lot of advice from the Licensing Board. We want to clean things up and make it easier and will come to the membership for support. If there is anything the members want to see, let Jack know. Rob Ceriello feels all the associations should teach the 2023 code at the same time. A lot of guys do not even know what code we are on. Jack said a lot of people hold licenses in other places. They take our continuing classes and use it for their licenses elsewhere. The way the law reads now is you are only allowed to teach the current code in the State which is 2017. We are making a little leeway on the 2020 because we know it is coming but we are skipping 2020 because it means nothing and we go right to 2023. But you still have to know what is skipped. Rob Ceriello asked are you going to contact these villages and municipalities about using unlicensed electricians. Jack said we will start to have these municipalities govern to make sure the person that is doing the work is signing the paperwork and who is responsible for everything. We will let them know what the County law is. Another thing the Licensing Board is doing is if someone has their license shelved, they have to come before the Board. It has to be their primary job. They are also cracking down on the verification for employment. They are starting to see the verification signed by master electricians but they are not the contractor that the person was working for. Most of the cases is because the electrician will not sign a piece of paper. If someone works for them, they have to sign it; they cannot say no. The reason the guy may not sign it is because it says “qualified” and they may not feel qualified. So, they are looking to remove the word “qualified.” This has to go through the legislature to do it. These are some of the issues the Licensing Board has been working on.

PSEG Representatives: Joe Mikulas, Jack Morrell, Rob Szalay

Tom DiBella reported they talked about meter enclosures to be approved. They are still behind in transformers – 6-to-9-month delay. Delays with switch gears, CTs and meters. Behind in underground cables. They have a program right now with trip saver fuses (single phase for branch circuits). They put a lot of money in infrastructure the last few years with their storm hardening program and trip saver smart fuses which are programable. They got some recognition from the government. We have 1500 trip savers going up right now. It trips once and resets itself. This will save a lot of outages. The smart meters can pinpoint outages and get a lot of data on loads and real time management. We will have 500 customers that go out instead of 5,000. Dave reported the Long Beach wind project got shut down. It was too expensive. There is one out east going up.

Membership/Plaques & Awards: Robert Tschoke, Brian McAuliff, Ralph Lambiase/Jack Morrell

Rob S. announced one new member: Jesse Giorgi of M&K Electric Technology in Selden who was not present. His packet will be mailed to him.

Nassau Electric League: Mahesh Panchal, Ralph Lambiase, Tom Orlando

Mahesh reported they had a program by Leviton on smart switches. Rob S. said they have programs also. Take advantage of that.

IAEI: (Independent Alliance for the Electrical Industry) Mahesh Panchal, Ralph Lambiase, Scott Eastman, Tom Orlando

Rob Ceriello reported they have meetings and will send SCECA the list of dates. They meet on the first Wednesday of the month. Their next meeting is on 2/7. They will have a person coming from Pennsylvania talking about changes. IAEI will be holding a 2020 Code change class on a Saturday in April. We still get those question about arc fault/GFI for refrigerators in the kitchen. At some point we will get the signal to go to 2023. We need to get a lot of people trained. Rob S. said we will keep everyone posted with what is going on with the IAEI. Rob C. said they lost a lot of their emails during Covid. Rob S. said we will send out emails for them if they email it to us.

MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS: (Rob Szalay, Brian McAuliff – Co-chairs, and Jack Morrell)
Joe Mikulas, Editor – “Light,”

Rob S. and Brian had nothing to report.
Joe was not present.

Energy Expo: Rob Szalay, Jack Morrell, Dave Kennedy

Nothing to report.

Legislative Review: Jack Morrell

Jack had nothing to report.

Old Business:

Nothing to report.

New Business:

Nothing to report.


3 – $57 cash prizes were won by Ralph Lambiase, Jim Smith and Frank Navetta.
1 – Greenlee mini volt tester was won by Brian LeDonne.

$100 attendance award was drawn for Viateur Pilon (#130-25YC) who was not present to win.

A motion to adjourn the meeting at 9:40 p.m. was made by Joe Mikulas and seconded by Mahesh Panchal.

Respectfully submitted,

Barbara George                      Dave Kennedy
Recording Secretary              Secretary