Construction Legislative Week in Review
www.agc.org March 15, 2012
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On the Inside
TRANSPORTATION
Senate Passes Transportation Bill, Still Waiting on the House to Take Action
TRIP/AGC Press Conference Highlights Hawaii Road Needs
AGC EVENTS
AGC Federal Contractors Conference is Only 5 Weeks Away
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TRANSPORTATION
Senate Passes Transportation Bill, Still Waiting on the House to Take Action
 

Yesterday, the Senate passed their AGC supported, 2- year, $109 billion surface transportation reauthorization bill, S. 1813 the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) by a strong bipartisan vote of 74-22.  Funding levels and key provisions of MAP-21 can be found here.

The bipartisanship that brought the bill to the floor for a vote was evident during the deliberation of the bill and the consideration of amendments. Several amendments were passed by a voice vote, while a number of amendments opposed by AGC were defeated. These include amendments to cut the overall funding of MAP-21; devolve federal surface transportation programs to the states; and allow states to opt out of the federal program. A full list of amendments that AGC took a position on can be found here.  There were several other transportation related amendments to MAP-21, a complete list can be found here.

AGC and other industry stakeholders were successful in inserting language into the final bill that includes a multi-year exemption from the Private Activity Bond (PAB) volume cap for water and wastewater projects.  The legislation provides for a five or six-year exemption from the state PAB volume cap for water projects while also providing  a one-year alternative minimum tax (AMT) extension for tax-exempt bonds.

Attention now is focused on the House of Representatives where Republican leaders have several options as to how they wish to proceed. AGC has learned that the most likely scenario is that the House will pass a short-term extension while they try to reach an agreement on a final reauthorization bill.  At this point, it seems unlikely the House will simply take up and pass the Senate bill. All 100 Senators have already agreed that it is unconstitutional for them to send their passed version of the transportation bill to the House since it is unconstitutional for a bill with a S. bill number to raise or extend taxes, as S. 1813 does.  AGC and other transportation stakeholders continue to push for the House to pass a multiyear reauthorization prior to the March 31 deadline. Please visit AGC's Legislative Action Center to send a letter to your Representative.

For more information, please contact Sean O’Neill at (202) 547-8892 or oneills@agc.org. Return to Top

TRIP/AGC Press Conference Highlights Hawaii Road Needs
 

Today, the Road Information Program (TRIP) released a report discussing road and bridge conditions in Hawaii.  The report highlights the additional costs a typical driver incus, from wasted fuel, time lost in congestion and additional maintenance and repairs because of poor road and bridge conditions. Joining TRIP at the press conference was  John Romanowski, president of AGC’s General Contractors Association of Hawaii chapter and vice president of Jas. W. Glover Ltd. who reported on the latest construction job numbers, showing that the Honolulu area lost another 600 construction jobs - a 3 percent decline - between January 2011 and January 2012.
 
The news conference noted the need for Congress to complete action on the long delayed transportation reauthorization legislation. Romanowski noted that Honolulu continues to experience some of the nation’s most severe construction job losses as Congress is years late in passing legislation to fund vital highway, bridge and other infrastructure repairs.
 
The TRIP report was the lead story in the March 15, 2012 Star Adviser, Oahu’s top newspaper. The press conference was also covered by all four local television stations.
 
Nationally, Honolulu ranked 255th out of 337 metro areas in terms of the percentage of construction jobs lost during the year.  Romanowski said that construction employment in Hawaii has declined 30 percent during the past 5 years.  Meanwhile, Honolulu has lost nearly one quarter of the construction jobs that existed in January 2008, a decline of 6,300 jobs.

For more information, please contact Brian Deery at (703) 837-5319 or deeryb@agc.org. Return to Top

AGC EVENTS
AGC Federal Contractors Conference is Only 5 Weeks Away
Donít Miss Out Ė Register Today!
 

The 2012 AGC Federal Contractors Conference will be held April 16-19, 2012, at The Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. This meeting is the only national event where contractors and federal agency personnel can meet in a collaborative forum to review federal construction contracting issues and trends from around the United States. These insightful and highly productive exchanges have solidified the need for both federal construction contractors and the federal construction agencies to share information on a wide variety of issues, foster better communication, and create real solutions.

If you are engaged in any aspect of constructing, designing, or planning a federal project and you are a general contractor, specialty contractor, service/supplier, attorney or any other important stakeholder already engaged in the Federal or Federally-assisted market, this conference has a place for you. If you are interested in learning more about Federal contracting opportunities and how to get started, this conference is a great place to begin your learning experience.

The conference is geared for AGC members who perform a diverse range of projects including building construction for agencies such as the General Services Administration, military construction projects for our Armed Services, highway and transportation projects for our nation, and water resources projects that benefit our nation’s navigation and flood control. AGC continues to inform members from specific industry segments about emerging issues and trends that are relevant to their work.

To learn more about the conference, download the conference brochure and register, please visit www.agc.org/fedcon.


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