Construction Legislative Week in Review
www.agc.org October 18, 2018
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On the Inside
Safety
OSHA Clarifies Position on Drug Testing and Safety Incentive Programs
Construction Data
AGC Releases Latest State-Specific Construction Industry Data
Infrastructure
CBO Reports on Infrastructure Spending and Financing
Environment
White House Launches Accountability System to Track Environmental Approvals
Events
2019 AGC Winter Safety & Health Conference
Safety Management Training Course
Safety
OSHA Clarifies Position on Drug Testing and Safety Incentive Programs
 
In line with AGC recommendations, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued an  October 11 memorandum clarifying the agency's position that its rule prohibiting employer retaliation against employees for reporting work-related injuries or illnesses does not prohibit workplace safety incentive programs or post-incident drug testing. The agency expressed a belief that many employers who implement safety incentive programs and/or conduct post-incident drug testing do so to promote workplace safety and health. Any action taken under a safety incentive program or post-incident drug testing policy would only violate OSHA's anti-retaliation rule if the employer took the action to penalize an employee for reporting a work-related injury or illness rather than for the legitimate purpose of promoting workplace safety and health. 

For more information, contact Kevin Cannon at (703) 837-5410 or cannonk@agc.org.  Return to Top
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Construction Data
AGC Releases Latest State-Specific Construction Industry Data
 
AGC’s economic team recently updated its construction industry fact sheets for all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Each fact sheet presents: US and state construction industry wages and salaries; a table showing the five most numerous construction occupations in the state and their median pay relative to all employees in the state; several data points on US and state construction spending put in place and starts; graphs, a table and bullet points on US, state and metro construction employment history and recent trends; and more. You can access those state-specific fact sheets here
 
For more information, contact Ken Simonson at simonsonk@agc.org or Allen Chen or allen.chen@agc.org
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Infrastructure
CBO Reports on Infrastructure Spending and Financing
 
On Oct. 17, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issued two report detailing public spending and financing tools on transportation and water infrastructure from 1956 to 2017.  The spending report showed that public spending on Transportation and Water Infrastructure has been fairly consistent as a share of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at about 2.3 percent, which is below the 3.0 percent peak in 1959.   The finance report illustrates that more than half of state and local spending on transportation and water infrastructure has been financed through bonds that provide federal tax preferences or through federally supported loan programs.
 
The reports provide information on six types of infrastructure: highways, mass transit and rail, aviation, water transportation, water resources, and water utilities.  Public spending – federal, state, and local governments – on transportation and water infrastructure totaled $440 billion in 2017.  The majority of that spending came from state and local governments, providing $342 billion, while the federal government accounted for $98 billion.  Of the state and local government spending, 30 percent was for capital expenditures and 70 percent was for operation and maintenance. While most federal spending – 73 percent – went towards capital expenditures and 27 percent went to operations and maintenance. 
 
AGC will continue to advocate for increased infrastructure investment at all levels of government.

For more information, please contact Sean O’Neill at oneills@agc.org or (202) 547-8992.
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Environment
White House Launches Accountability System to Track Environmental Approvals
 
The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) recently released a new memorandum (Memorandum M-18-25) establishing a brand new “accountability system” to track and score federal agencies performance in meeting the President Trump’s two-year timeline for completing environmental reviews and authorization decisions on “major infrastructure projects.” The memo requires, and outlines the procedures by which, all agencies that have a role in environmental approvals for infrastructure must regularly track and measure their performance in meeting a list of goals that aim to expedite and improve infrastructure permitting.  Agencies must submit tracking information to OMB and the Federal Agency Portal of the “Federal Infrastructure Permitting Dashboard.” OMB will score each agency’s performance, issue reports, and “consider each agency's performance during budget formulation and determine whether appropriate penalties... must or should be imposed.”      
 
The guidance, intended to further implement Executive Order 13807, and related government actions are consistent with and complement AGC’s focus and recommended reforms for improving federal environmental review and permitting.  For further details, click here.
 
For more information, contact Leah Pilconis at (703) 837-5332 pilconisl@agc.org. Return to Top
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Events
2019 AGC Winter Safety & Health Conference
January 16-18, 2019 | Miami, FL
 
The 2019 Winter Safety & Health Conference will take place January 16-18, 2019 at the Marriott Miami Biscayne Bay in Miami, FL. Join more than 250 industry professionals and participate in the development of regulatory and legislative activity on both a national and local level; assist in the development and creation of new safety training programs and products; and hear the latest initiatives from OSHA and other industry experts. Full details on the Conference and links to registration and the hotel room block can be found here.  
 
For more information, contact Nazia Shah at (703) 837-5409 or nazia.shah@agc.org.  
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Safety Management Training Course
February 11-13, 2019 | Omaha, NE
 
The AGC Safety Management Training Course (SMTC) provides attendees three days of training on the basic skills needed to manage a company safety program in the construction industry. The SMTC program builds on Focus Four training and prepares attendees to manage key safety issues on the job site and provides techniques for delivering basic safety training to field personnel. Participants will receive intensive instruction and training that will allow them to return to their firms with readily applicable new skills to positively impact their company’s safety and health program. For more information, click here.
 
For more information, contact Nazia Shah at (703) 837-5409 or nazia.shah@agc.org.  
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