September SCECA General Meeting

Meeting Details


Thursday, September 21, 2023


7:00 PM


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

Program Topic:

SCECA will be hosting Kidde who will be doing a presentation on the latest codes and products.

Vendor of the month:


Food Provided By:

N&S Supply

Meeting Minutes


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

There were approximately 45 members in attendance. Those Officers and Board of Directors present were: Rob Szalay, Robert Tschoke, Dave Kennedy, Ralph Lambiase, Joe Mikulas Jack Morrell, Tom Orlando and Mahesh Panchal.

Excused: Brian McAuliff.

Called to Order: 7:18 p.m.

Rob Szalay led the Pledge of Allegiance. A motion to accept the General Meeting Minutes of 5/18/23 and 6/15/23 was made by Joe Mikulas and seconded by Rob Tschoke.

**President’s Report:

Rob S. commented we have a lot going on this season; we have a lot of programs. We have our Energy Expo coming up on October 26th. We have all sorts of vendors coming. PSEG will be there. They will do keynotes and workshops; not typical trade shows we have done in the past. We are doing this with NEL. It will be big and informative. The admission is free. It takes place at the Radisson Hotel on Motor Parkway in Hauppauge. All members are welcome to come down. Because we are having this Expo in October, we will not be having our general meeting in October. We will resume our general meeting in November. It will be noted on our website that there will be no meeting in October.


Treasurer’s Report: Tom Orlando

Tom O. reported he missed the May meeting and the June meeting was at Smoky Bones. He reported for the months of May, June, August and September. For the month ending May 2023 the income was $750.41 and the expenses for the month were $6,517.00. For the month ending June 2023 the income was $225.14 and the expenses were $5,514.55. Dues went out July 1st. For the month ending July 2023 the income was $14,284.40 and the expenses were $1,660.57. For the month ending August 2023 the income was $14,439.83 and the expenses were $3,092.17. The 3rd and final dues notices went out to those that have not paid yet. Some people gave me a check tonight. We have some unpaid members, please pay if you are one of them. Fiscally, we are surviving. Joe Mikulas asked Tom O. how much the meeting room costs. Tom O. said the room and food tonight costs about $1200. Fortunately, N&S is paying for our food for the 2023-2024 season. That is a home run. Without that we would be in trouble. Joe commented if anyone here goes to N&S to thank them for their support; we appreciate it. A motion to accept the Treasurer’s Report was made by Joe Mikulas and seconded by Dave Kennedy.

Secretary’s Report: David Kennedy

Dave reported it is the beginning of the season so not much to report. You know what is going on with the Expo. We are in negotiations to see what we will do for our installation dinner at the end of our fiscal year. A motion to accept the Secretary’s report was made by Mahesh Panchal and seconded by Rob Tschoke.

Legal Counsel: Michael Ganz

Mike Ganz introduced himself and his law firm that does a lot of labor law. He tries to put an article in the “Light” every month. Next month he will do an article on the NY transparency law that just passed. Any company with 4 or more employees has to advertise a range of salaries. He would also like to do a program in November or next spring. He will get some good topics and the members always have good questions.

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

Patti had nothing to report. Wally Boorum gave a quick heads up that this time of year about 60% of the healthcare plans renew. This is the busiest time of the year for him. If anyone wants to find out what plan is right for them, he can do that with no commitment. If what you already have is right, he will tell you that, if not he will recommend something else.

Rob S. informed the membership they can talk to them after the meeting or email Patti or Wally anytime with questions. Take advantage of this.

PROGRAMS: Kevin Ohrnberger of Gumersell Cashdan representing Kidde gave an informative program on Kidde products and discussed legislation and the UL 217 8th edition to take effect June 2024. There are two main types of alarms are ionization or photoelectric. Ionization uses electrical charged particles to detect fast flaming fires. The photoelectric uses a beam to detect smoldering fires. If the beam breaks the alarm goes off. The ionization alarms are very sensitive so you get a lot of nuisance alarms. The photoelectric alarms are less sensitive. Kidde was forced to redesign and go to photoelectric line due to the microchip shortage during Covid. The old AA battery hardwire units had to be completely redesigned. The newer units have a different wiring harness. They sell a conversion kit for the homeowner. Cuar is the new design line120 Volt hardwire, AA batteries with door in the back, push button test, and end of life warning. CuarV has voice – yells fire or carbon monoxide. One member asked why revert back to the AA batteries. Kevin said because they are being sold in the market at the price point, they were at and there were customers that still wanted them; there was still a demand. Everyone should be moving to a 10-year sealed battery but until the demand dies down, they will still produce them. Kidde was forced to discontinue their 407 and 408 combo smoke and fire units and moved to the photoelectric 4010 which was always on the market but never as popular as the other units. Kevin then went over other Kidde products – 10-year combo units: 2 in 1 smoke/CO, 3 in 1 smoke/CO/air quality and Leak detection (sits on floor to detect water leaks). These units have ambient light sensing. They will not chirp in the dark. They come with a center ring that should be green when it is working, amber light means there is an issue, red is fire and it has an end-of-life chirp. The battery backup in hard wire units were not meant to last for ten years; it’s just a backup. Do not cut the power. New to Kidde is the smart home products. There is an app to put on your phone or iPad to notify you of an alarm or leak in your house. The new UL 217 8th edition is a whole new technology called smart sensor designed to cut down on nuisance alarms. Also, Kidde is the only one that is tested by UL. This is coming out June 30, 2024. Catalogs and cut sheets in the back. A question-and-answer session followed.

By-Laws & Nominating: Jack Morrell

Jack had nothing to report on by-laws.

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

Rob S. reported our October 14 CEH class is full. We will announce November date shortly. If you need your Suffolk County electrical license renewal you need to take an 8-hour CEH class. They will not renew it if you do not have the CEH certificate. Besides that, if you have employees they can also come for education. We are doing 1 and 2 family now. Rob S. then introduced John McGinn and his 8 students from the Electrical Training Center. These are all potential employees. If you are looking for some help you may find a good fit here for your company. They are here every month. John McGinn added the students are all well-trained in all aspects of the electrical industry. The students here today are beginners. They are learning theory. All the students start off on how to handle tools. We have gathered information from a lot of contractors because we want to know what the contractors want the students to know. IE.T.C. graduate our daytime students every 5 weeks, our afternoon students every 10 weeks and our night students every 7 weeks. John left some business cards for anyone who wants to contact the training center for more information.

Electrical Safety: Robert Tschoke, Ralph Lambiase

Rob T. asked if anyone has any bad situations – code violations – to report. Please send them his way. Keith Budka gave me some stuff. It was brought up about 811 Dig. Cover yourself, it is free so call them and get it marked out. Also keep a journal on what you gave your employees and on what they are required to wear. John McGinn informed that all the students get OSHA training and 811 training. Tom O .was told the dig must take place within 3 days after it was marked. Is that correct? Rob T. did not know but the consensus was 3 days. Keith said the last time he called for the dig it took them 3 weeks to get to him. Rob T. said to cover yourself because it could be costly. Joe said if you call 811 as a contractor, the first thing they will ask you is if you had taken their course online. Rob T. recommends everyone getting certified for 811 Dig. (Barbara emailed Crystal of NY811 and she said start your dig within 10 days) Get OSHA 30 card also. Rob S. informed members that 811 offers a free course online and you print out your certificate. Rob Ceriello had a phone call from an electrician that had an outage in the Elwood shopping center recently. When he got there, he saw the lugs loosened from the wiring in a 3-phase meter pan and it shot up through the pipe and took the insulation off of one phase. The only reason why it didn’t blow the meter pan is the bonding was done right. Tom O. heard about Generac generators having a major recall from maybe 2011 to current day. Joe believes that is related to the gas tanks. Rob T. will get in touch with Mike Towers and Generac and will report on it in the “Light.” Member Keith Budka said his neighbor’s EV receptacle melted. This is the 2nd one he came across this year. Member Dan Sherry said the Tesla plugs are burning up because they are not tight enough. Tom O. said Tesla is pushing Hubel chargers because the others are substandard. He has seen it on video. But if it is a UL approved item then it is safe to use. John Cangemi said if it is UL listed then anyone of them could be good to use. Joe looked up the recall and as of 9/14 the Generac portable generators’ fuel tank as in gasoline, can fail to vent adequately from the rollover valve causing the gas tank to build up excess pressure and expel fuel when opened posing a fire and burn hazards. There are 64,000 units affected.

Entertainment: Dave Kennedy, Scott Eastman, Mahesh Panchal

Dave reported as he said before that there is nothing going on yet. As far as the end of year installation dinner is concerned, he will let you know when he knows what will happen.

Good & Welfare: Joe Mikulas

Joe reported he has some good news, congratulations to recording Secretary Barbara whose daughter got married. Dave reported he just found out Tom Thomas has cancer.

Inspection Agencies:

Certified Electrical Inspectors: #896-A Rob Ceriello reported just the same questions – arc fault terminology. Article 210 is very important – arc fault, GFI. The other article 250 is grounding and bonding. Also, pools are a nightmare. If you are not in the pool business, stay away. You have to understand bonding. It has to be open for the inspectors. You have to stay on top of the pools and contractors. Or you will fail inspection. Read article 680 and follow it or take a course. Rob T. reiterated get your rough in inspection for your bonding and grounding. Rob Ceriello also reported on 10/28 they are giving a 6-hour course on 1 and 2 family dwellings and a 2-hour course on hazardous locations in Farmingdale. He will drop off flyers at the E.T.C., supply houses, NEL and SCECA.

East End Inspection Agency: #1193-A Ed Seltenreich was not present.
EII: NYBFU: #1109-A Philip Goehring were not present. Rich Jendzo said to watch illegal spray booths. There was an illegal one in Glen Cove. They can be dangerous. They are tiny. They spray lacquer in it. Rob T. says just because they ask you to do something and you don’t feel comfortable doing it and know it is against the code, don’t do it. Tom O. asked if Riverhead had hired an inspector yet. Rich Jendzo said they were called by an electrician to do an inspection at a building in Riverhead because the inspector they were using got kicked off the job by the electrician and the Town. You can, as an electrician, ask for your own inspector in the Town of Riverhead.
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 had nothing to report. A member asked what the delay is in getting your license. Jack said it could take 3 to 4 weeks. You get an email that it is being processed.

PSEG Representatives: Joe Mikulas, Jack Morrell, Rob Szalay

Rob S. reported that PSEG representatives could not attend tonight. We do have connectors in the back. Jack said Tom DiBella is at a PSEG golf outing today and Rich Inserra had an operation, so he is recovering. Rich Jendzo added that Neal Slattery told him the plastic meters are melting if there is any kind of imbalance or loose connection. If you see it is melted, cut the taps first before you remove the cover. This is for single phase only. They don’t have a 3-phase with plastic.

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

Rob T. reported we have a list of nonmembers, and we are working on it and sending out emails for membership.

There are 5 new members: Bill Cavanagh, James Dougherty, Daniel Martin, Michael Single and John DeMaio. Only Daniel Martin was present. All will be sworn in at the November general meeting.

Rob T. informed the members that the burden of getting membership is not just on the Board. It is up to every member to talk membership up and get people to join.

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

Mahesh reported they had a program on insurance and 401K.

Keith Budka has a job in Oyster Bay and they said he has to get an affidavit. Rob S. answered the homeowner has to get it. It has nothing to do with the electrician and it is not your concern. Rob Ceriello said there are a bunch of forms being required in Oyster Bay because they want to make sure the person doing the job is a licensed electrician.

IAEI: Mahesh Panchal, Ralph Lambiase, Scott Eastman, Tom Orlando

Rob Ceriello reported the IAEI is changing their name to attract more members. They have gone backwards since Covid. Instead of International Association of Electrical Inspectors, they are keeping the letters, they will become Independent Alliance for the Electrical Industry. This will be nationally. There are people in this room that attend regularly. We would like to get the students to these meetings also. We get speakers in to teach you about important stuff that you need to know about when you get out in the field. The meetings are in Farmingdale, 45 Motor Ave., by Stop & Shop 2nd entrance, in the community building in Allen Park. They are held the first Wednesday of every month. Next meetings are 10/4 and 11/1. They come back in February. Rob S. added that every member will get the email with the time, date and location.

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

Newsletter: Joe reported the newsletter may have come out late because Barbara was tied up with daughter’s wedding. If you are not getting the newsletter and your dues are current, see Barbara.

Energy Expo: Rob Szalay, Jack Morrell, Dave Kennedy

Discussed earlier. It is 10/26.

Legislative Review: Jack Morrell

Jack had nothing to report. Rob S. said the new law enacted in NYS about the wages. Mike Ganze will be writing an article about it.

Old Business:

Nothing to report.

New Business:

Nothing to report.


4 – $70 cash prizes were won by Tom Orlando twice, Greg Smith and Sean Hartig.
1 – Kidde Smoke/Carbon Combo alarm donated by Kevin Ohrnberger of Gumersell Cashdan was won by Greg Smith.
1 – Kidde Smoke/Carbon Combo alarm donated by Kevin Ohrnberger of Gumersell Cashdan was won by Tom Orlando.
1 – Kidde Smoke/Carbon Voice alarm donated by Kevin Ohrnberger of Gumersell Cashdan was won by Patti Muldoon.
1 – Kidde Smoke Voice alarm donated by Kevin Ohrnberger of Gumersell Cashdan was won by John McGinn.
1 – Kidde Leak Detector donated by Kevin Ohrnberger of Gumersell Cashdan was won by Tom Orlando.
1 – Kidde bag donated by Kevin Ohrnberger of Gumersell Cashdan was won by Scott Eastman.

$100 attendance award was drawn for John Felbinger (#1222-C) who was not present to win.

A motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:44 p.m. was made by Rob Tschoke and seconded by Mahesh Panchal.

Respectfully submitted,

Barbara George                                                                                                          Dave Kennedy
Recording Secretary                                                                                                  Secretary