Construction Legislative Week in Review January 5, 2017
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On the Inside
AGC-Backed Regulatory Reform Legislation Passes House
AGC WebEd: The 2017 Regulatory Road Ahead
SBA Finalizes Small Business Subcontractor Counting Rule
AGC-Backed Regulatory Reform Legislation Passes House
Could Help Roll Back Obama Administration Regulations

 On Jan. 4, the House passed AGC-backed legislation that would help Congress repeal more Obama administration regulations, as well as future administration’s regulations. The Midnight Rules Relief Act—introduced by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calf.)—would enable Congress to include multiple regulations for repeal in one bill under the Congressional Review Act. As it stands, Congress can only include one regulation for repeal in single bill, which is a time-consuming process that severely restricts the number of regulations that could be repealed. To provide context, in 2016, federal agencies issued 3,853 regulations.  This exceeds the number of bills Congress passed by a factor of 18.

Today, the House will also consider legislation that would require regulations with a total cost to the economy of $100 million or more to be approved by Congress before they become effective. In addition to placing a congressional check on such major regulations, the Regulations in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act—introduced by Doug Collins (R-Ga.)—would allow Congress to disapprove of non-major regulations below the $100 million threshold. House passage of this bill is expected. Upon passage, the Senate may consider both bills after President-elect Trump is sworn into office. AGC will continue to press for such common sense regulatory reform in the new Congress.

For more information, contact Jimmy Christianson at or 703-837-5325.  Return to Top

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AGC WebEd: The 2017 Regulatory Road Ahead
Thursday, Jan. 19 from 3:30 pm to 5:00 PM ET

Register today for this 2017 regulatory overview webinar—helpful for all construction contractors with public or private work. It is complimentary for AGC members and $49 for non-members. Can’t make the webinar, but want to know more now? Click herefor AGC’s Regulatory Road Ahead document covering major rules and issues between now and Inauguration Day. In addition, click here for AGC’s “Make Federal Agencies Responsible Again” document, detailing the association’s regulatory, compliance and enforcement plan for the Trump administration.

During this webinar, AGC’s Regulatory Counsel Jimmy Christianson and construction law attorney Michael Branca with Peckar & Abramson provide an overview of and outlook for:

  • The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Silica Rule and Injury and Illness Record Keeping Rule (Impacting Employer Drug Testing Procedures);
  • The U.S. Department of Labor’s Overtime Rule;
  • The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rule and Construction General Permit for stormwater discharges;
  • The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Local Hiring Rule, Buy America Rules, and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program;
  • The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Mentor-Protégé Program and Lower Tier Small Business Subcontractor Counting Rule;
  • The Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces (Blacklisting) Executive Order; and
  • The Paid Sick Leave Executive Order

To register,click here.

For more information, contact Jimmy Christianson at or 703-837-5325.  Return to Top

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SBA Finalizes Small Business Subcontractor Counting Rule
AGC-Enacted Law Leads to Rule

As a result of past AGC legislative success, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) recently finalized a ruleallowing direct-federal large business prime contractors to count lower tier small business subcontractors towards their small business subcontracting goals. Prior to this rule, such prime contractors were only able to count first tier small business subcontractors towards those goals. Although the rule goes “into effect” on Jan. 23, there will be no way for prime contractors to receive credit for small business subcontractors until the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Council issues a final rule to include this in federal contracts. That FAR rule and a new FAR clause could come in 2017.

In lieu of a FAR rule and clause, direct-federal large business prime contractors interested in taking credit for lower tier small business subcontractors may consider beginning preparations to comply with the SBA rule. To receive such credit, there are some strings attached under the rule. Those include:

Prime contractors, not federal agencies, establishing two sets of small business subcontracting goals: (1) one goal for the first subcontracting tier; and (2) another for lower tier subcontracts. Ultimately, however, federal agencies will evaluate the prime contractor’s small business subcontracting goal performance based on its combined performance under the first and lower tier goal;

Prime contractors and their large business subcontractors must assign a specific North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Code and corresponding size standard that best describes the principal purpose of the subcontract to each small business subcontract;

Prime contractors and large business subcontractors are responsible for making a good faith effort to meet or exceed the small business subcontracting goals established in their respective subcontracting plans. Failure to make this effort could result in liquidated damages, default termination and negative performance reviews; and

Prime contractors are ultimately responsible for approving and policing their large business subcontractors’ subcontracting plans.

It should also be noted that the Electronic Subcontracting Reporting System will be the database used to capture lower tier small business subcontractor information, as it is currently used to collect information at the first subcontracting tier. AGC will provide additional information as it further examines this rule and monitors progress of a FAR rule and clause.

For more information, contact Jimmy Christianson at or 703-837-5325.  Return to Top

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