Wednesday, March 31, 2021 1:17 PM |
, Politics & Policy
, Workforce Development
, GA-Energy & Environment
, GA - Employment
, GA - Tax Relief & Fiscal Policy
, GA - Federal Procurement
, Prevailing Wage
On March 31, the Biden administration released a more than $2 trillion infrastructure outline titled the “American Jobs Plan.” While the plan calls for federal spending over the next eight years to improve the nation’s infrastructure, including for transportation, broadband, energy, and drinking water, it also includes funding for schools and child-care facilities, affordable housing, workforce development and manufacturing.
On March 12, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (H.R. 1319) into law, including a controversial provision providing a Congressional Budget Office-estimated $86 billion taxpayer bailout of struggling multiemployer pension plans.
On March 5, ABC and a coalition of 14 industry and employer groups sent a letter to President Biden raising concerns about the expansion of policies encouraging or mandating project labor agreements on federal and federally assisted construction projects.
On Feb. 24, ABC submitted a letter for the record to the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works for its hearing, “Building Back Better: Investing in Transportation While Addressing Climate Change, Improving Equity and Fostering Economic Growth and Innovation,” to urge the committee to consider policies that will increase competition, reduce costly and ineffective regulations and address the construction industry’s skilled worker shortage.
In a concerning development for the merit shop contracting community and hardworking taxpayers, the U.S. Department of Transportation is encouraging the use of government-mandated project labor agreements on federally assisted construction projects funded through a grant program administered by the DOT’s Build America Bureau.
On Feb. 4, ABC submitted a letter for the record to the U.S. House Committee on Small Business for its hearing, “State of the Small Business Economy in the Era of COVID-19,” to provides insight on the state of small construction businesses and the construction industry as a whole, nearly a year into the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a Feb. 4 letter to President Joe Biden, ABC expressed concerns about the “expansion of existing policies that needlessly limit competition and increase costs on taxpayer-funded federal and federally assisted construction projects.”
On Feb 2, the U.S. Senate confirmed Pete Buttigieg to be secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation by a vote of 86-13. Secretary Buttigieg will be tasked with advancing President Joe Biden’s agenda in the Transportation Department, where he will oversee 55,000 employees. Secretary Buttigieg is expected to play an important role in promoting Biden’s sweeping environmental initiatives, and support the president’s push for an infrastructure plan.
On July 29, ABC sent a letter to President Trump applauding him for issuing two executive orders, Regulatory Relief to Support Economic Recovery and Accelerating the Nation’s Economic Recovery from the COVID-19 Emergency by Expediting Infrastructure Investments and Other Activities, which will help to remove burdensome barriers to job creation and help the economy continue to rebound from the COVID-19 crisis.
During its annual reconvene/veto session April 22, the Virginia General Assembly agreed with Gov. Ralph Northam (D) and delayed the effective date of two laws permitting prevailing wage and project labor agreement requirements on taxpayer-funded public works projects.