Construction Legislative Week in Review
www.agc.org March 20, 2014
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On the Inside
HARDHATS FOR HIGHWAYS
Tomorrow is Your Last Chance to Meet with Your Reps in Your District this Week
LABOR
Changes to Overtime Regulations Expected
ELECTIONS
Illinois Results: Tighter Than Forecast
HARDHATS FOR HIGHWAYS
Tomorrow is Your Last Chance to Meet with Your Reps in Your District this Week
Get Involved at www.HardhatsforHighways.org
 

With your Senators and Representatives working in their home states this week, it is the perfect opportunity to get involved in the Hardhats for Highways campaign.  Contact your members of Congress today to set up meetings with each office and educate them on the connection between local jobs and federal highway and transit investment.

Hardhats for Highways has already distributed more than 4,000 hardhat decals to companies in the construction industry.  Request your decals, send an e-Hardhat letter to your members of Congress, and gather information for your district meetings next week at www.hardhatsforhighways.org.

For more information, please contact Brynn Huneke at (703) 837-5376 or brynn.huneke@agc.org Return to Top

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LABOR
Changes to Overtime Regulations Expected
 

On March 13, President Obama signed a presidential memorandum directing the Secretary of Labor to propose changes to regulations governing which employees are entitled to overtime pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). 

While the memorandum did not detail exactly which parts of the regulations should be revised, the Department of Labor (DOL) is expected to change both the salary level and primary duty tests used to determine exemption from overtime pay mandates.  Currently, an employee must be paid at least $455 per week to be exempt.  DOL is likely to propose a significant increase in that threshold, possibly tying it to the Consumer Price Index or another inflation index.  The primary duty test varies depending on which “white collar” exemption applies but generally requires that the employee actually perform managerial, supervisory, or other non-manual duties as a main part of his or her job.  DOL is expected to tighten up the duty tests, possibly setting a specific percentage threshold for the amount of time that the employee performs the qualifying duties.  AGC anticipates that both changes, if implemented, will have a significant impact on the construction industry.

DOL will likely begin the rulemaking process later this year, which will include an opportunity for public comment.  A final rule is not expected for some time.  (The rulemaking process took two years when these regulations were last revised in 2004.)  AGC will continue to monitor the process and will comment appropriately when given the opportunity.  

For information on the FLSA as it exists currently, visit the DOL website or the Labor and HR Topical Resources section of the AGC website.  The primary category is “Compensation” and the secondary category is “Fair Labor Standards Act.”

For more information, please contact Tamika Carter at (703) 837-5382 or cartert@agc.org Return to Top

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ELECTIONS
Illinois Results: Tighter Than Forecast
 

Primary voters went to the polls in Illinois on Tuesday and the predicted winners performed as expected, but several victory margins were a bit of a surprise. 

In the Governor's race, businessman Bruce Rauner managed to clinch the Republican nomination, but the race proved much closer than polling had indicated. Rauner defeated state Sen. Kirk Dillard, 2010 gubernatorial nominee Bill Brady and state Treasurer Dan Rutherford by a 40-37-15-7 percent split, respectively, far below what late polling was projecting even though the order of finish was correctly predicted.

On the Democratic side, vulnerable Gov. Pat Quinn easily became his party's 2014 standard bearer, yet a full 28 percent of his own party primary voters cast their ballot for a minor candidate. A Quinn-Rauner general election battle promises to be hard fought and close through to November.

In the Senate race, Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D) was unopposed for re-nomination. On the Republican side, state Senator and frequent political candidate Jim Oberweis won the nomination, as expected, but again with a closer than predicted margin.  Oberweis claimed only 56 percent of the Republican vote against a minor Republican candidate who was virtually non-existent on the campaign trail.  Sen. Durbin will coast to a fourth term in November.

In the congressional races, 15 of the state's 18 incumbents ran unopposed. In what proved to be the closest challenge to a sitting member, former Miss America Erika Harold, failed to win the nomination in the Republican primary challenge to freshman Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL-13). Mr. Davis was projected the winner with 54 percent of the vote, compared to Ms. Harold's 41 percent featuring a turnout of just over 50,000 GOP voters.  The 13th District promises to be a highly competitive campaign in the fall. Mr. Davis had the lowest 2012 win percentage of any House Republican (46.5 percent), illuminating certain political weakness despite his win. Coupled with his closer-than-expected 2014 primary victory, the 13th District has to be viewed as a serious Democratic conversion opportunity.

In the Democratic primary, the party favorite, former Judge Ann Callis, claimed the nomination over college professor George Gollin, but this race, too, was far from a major landslide. With all of the votes counted, Ms. Callis won a 54-32-14 percent victory against Gollin and minor candidate David Green. With both candidates scoring 54 percent in their respective primaries, each will need to strengthen their party bases but will have time to do so because, with almost eight full months before Election Day, Illinois has one of the longest general election campaign cycles in the country.

In the surprisingly hotly contested 11th congressional district, state Rep. Darlene Senger won a tight 38-32-26 percent victory over county Commissioner Chris Balkema and businessman Bert Miller.  Ms. Senger will now face a very uphill general election contest opposite Rep. Bill Foster (D), who was unopposed in his primary campaign last night.

Elsewhere, the other two Representatives facing primary challenges each easily won re-nomination. In Chicago's 4th District, Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D) topped 74 percent against two opponents. Two-term Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R) took his primary election without suspense, capturing 78 percent of the vote against GOP opponent, David Hale.

For more information, please contact David Ashinoff at (202) 547-5013 orashinoffd@agc.org Return to Top

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