AGC's Construction Legislative Week in Review - 03/19/2009 (Plain Text Version)
AGC Member Testifies Before Congress on Green Construction
AGC member Don Weaver (Weaver Bailey Contractors, El Paso, Arkansas) testified today before the U.S. House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming regarding green construction practices in the construction industry. Weaver called for new federal incentives to encourage recycling of construction materials and purchase of more efficient construction equipment. He also stated that tax credits and incentives would reduce greenhouse gas emissions, boost economic activity, cut waste and lower construction costs.
Noting that construction equipment accounts for only 0.86 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions according to the EPA, Weaver (left) said that the construction industry has a long history of developing techniques and practices that enhance the environment. He also noted that the federal government can assist in these practices by offering appropriate incentives.
AGC supports the creation of a federal investment tax credit for contractors to replace their existing diesel powered equipment, including front loaders and on-site generators. Such an incentive would cut diesel fuel consumption and reduce emissions of diesel particulates and black carbon. AGC also encourages federal and state agencies that commission construction projects to use local materials to save fuel and reduce emissions.
To view a copy of Don Weaver’s full testimony, please visit www.agc.org/advocacy/environment.
For more information contact Brian Deery at 703-837-5319 or email@example.com.
AGC Members Voice Opposition to Employee Free Choice Act
On March 10, the "so-called" Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) was introduced in both the House and the Senate. The legislation was introduced with significant Democratic support, but the total number of cosponsors was less than in 2007 and the Democratic leaders’ expectations. The decrease in support indicates that the voices of businesses and other groups in opposition are reaching leaders on Capitol Hill. AGC members across the country have been especially vocal in their opposition by delivering over 15,000 messages to their elected officials through AGC’s Legislative Action Center. While the response has been overwhelming, the expectation that Democratic leaders will move forward with the legislation remains, possibly later this spring or summer.
The legislation would deprive millions of employees the right to a private vote when deciding whether or not to unionize. It would hurt construction workers and make it very difficult for small construction companies to grow, hire or succeed. This legislation could also lead to federally mandated employment terms for construction firms. Though most of the focus of this bill has been the impact on open shop employers and their employees, EFCA is also likely to have a negative effect on union contractors and their 8(f) “pre-hire agreements.” Visit www.agc.org/efca to learn more about the impact of EFCA on union contractors, view the white paper, or download a podcast of the impact EFCA will have on employers.
AGC encourages members to continue to use AGC's Legislative Action Center to write and let their Members of Congress know their opposition to EFCA. AGC also urges employers to communicate with their management level employees and direct them to the Legislative Action Center as well. Currently, the grassroots campaign has been successful and will need to continue in the states of swing senators in Colorado, Louisiana, Arkansas, Virginia, Nebraska and North Carolina. These senators must not only oppose passage of EFCA, but must also oppose procedural votes such as cloture votes on EFCA.
AGC Members Testify at OSHA Public Hearings for Crane and Derricks in Construction
On March 17-20, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) held a series of public hearings on Crane and Derricks in Construction.
Several AGC members provided testimony on March 19, including Art Daniel (AR Daniel Construction Services, Inc.), Mitch White (Manson Construction) and Randy Rogers (Williams Brothers Construction). Richard Voorhees (Weeks Marine, Inc.) will testify tomorrow.
For more information on the history of the Crane and Derricks in Construction proposed rule and AGC’s comments during the C-DAC process or the SBREFA panel, click here. Also, visit AGC Advocacy to review regulations and comments submitted by AGC on Safety and Health regulations throughout the year.
Previous AGC Safety and Health Newsletter articles related to the same topic: