Federal Contractor Report
March 2019
Federal Contractors Conference
Register today for the 2019 AGC Federal Contractors Conference taking place June 10-12, 2019, in Washington, D.C. Space is limited. The Federal Contractors Conference discusses the latest projects, policies and contracting issues facing the industry with federal agencies, including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Naval Facility Engineering Command, Air Force Civil Engineer Center, General Services Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of State, Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Bureau of Reclamation.
Federal Government
No Project Has Yet Been Designated  

On March 18, the Department of Defense (DOD) identified list of roughly $12.9 billion of Military Construction Projects from which the Administration could reprogram $3.6 billion from military construction projects for construction of additional physical barriers along the southern border. It is important to note that this is a broad list and no specific military construction project — or other federal construction project — has officially been chosen for reallocation. 
Includes Infrastructure Plan Fact Sheet

On March 11, the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released the president’s fiscal year (FY) 2020 top-line budget request. In tandem with this request, OMB released an infrastructure fact sheet calling for long-term surface transportation reauthorization, solvency of the highway trust fund, and an additional $200 billion investment for other infrastructure priorities. AGC will further analyze the impacts of the FY2020 budget on the construction industry upon the release of the full budget request.

For more information, contact Sean O’Neill at oneills@agc.org.
Federal Agencies
Recommendations Also Detail Other Industry Best Practices
On March 11, AGC met with Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Chief of Engineers and Commanding General, and other USACE leaders. AGC formally presented the “Associated General Contractors of America’s Recommendations Regarding the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.” Among others, the recommendations include a streamlined change order/contract modification process, an outline of key USACE personnel performance indicators, leading project indicators for early detection and correction to improve project delivery outcomes, and a number of other best practice suggestions.

For more information, contact jordan.howard@agc.org or (703) 837-5368.
On Mar. 5, AGC met with leaders of the Department of State’s Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations (OBO). AGC brought in current and prospective contractors for a two-hour meeting to address the challenges OBO and the construction industry face in building embassies. Among the topics discussed were OBO’s Embassy After Next program, formal partnering, and difficult contract requirements. AGC and OBO pledged to continue to work to ensure the delivery of high-quality facilities and infrastructure the American foreign service deserves.

For more information, contact jordan.howard@agc.org or (703) 837-5368.
AGC Testifies before House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee
On March 13, Al Stanley — a current contractor member of the AGC of America Board of Directors from the Alabama AGC — testified before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Highways and Transit about the much-needed funding necessary to address the nation’s transportation and infrastructure needs, which especially includes the Highway Trust Fund’s revenue shortfall. Chairwoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) called the hearing as the House begins to debate an infrastructure package and the need to reauthorize the federal aid-highway and transit programs.
Ranking T&I Republican Favors VMT 
Chairman of the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) noted his intent to introduce legislation to provide a short-term fix for the Highway Trust Fund.  At a Mar. 7 House Ways and Means Committee hearing, he laid out why his proposal — which would authorize 30-year Treasury bonds and whose proceeds would be deposited in the Highway Trust Fund and repaid by increasing the fuel taxes by no more than 1.5 cents per year — makes the most sense from a practical and political standpoint. Ranking Member Sam Graves (R-Mo.) also testified on his interest in focusing on a vehicle miles traveled fee as a long-term solution, while acknowledging something needs to be done in the short-term. AGC will continue to work with leaders in Congress and our industry stakeholders to work on efforts to address the funding crisis facing the Highway Trust Fund.
Smith, Currie & Hancock, LLP
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The construction industry is experiencing record economic activity with low unemployment and little expectation that the current domestic workforce can alone meet employment demand. Currently, our nation's immigration system provides the high-tech sector, agricultural businesses, and seasonal employers with options for guest workers. It does not for the construction industry.
Awaiting EEOC Guidance on Reporting Requirements and Process
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has opened the EEO-1 online reporting portal following a recent court order reinstating the previously revised Obama administration EEO-1 form’s pay data reporting requirements that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) halted in 2017. The EEO-1 is an annual survey that requires all private employers with 100 or more employees and federal government contractors or first-tier subcontractors with 50 or more employees and a federal contract, subcontract or purchase order amounting to $50,000 or more to file the EEO-1 report. Barring EEOC action or an appeal by the administration before the survey’s deadline — May 31, 2019 — filers should be prepared for the pay data requirements to be included in the survey.
Sets Annual Salary Threshold at $35,308 
On March 13, the U. S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) updating the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime regulations. This new proposal would update the salary threshold using current wage data, projected to January 1, 2020. The result would boost the standard salary threshold for exempt employees from $455 to $679 per week (equivalent to $35,308 per year). The NPRM comes following a 2017 Request for Information (RFI) and is in line with AGC’s formal recommendations.  
Over the decades, determining where federal Clean Water Act jurisdiction lies has added regulatory uncertainty, delay, and cost to construction projects throughout the nation. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recently proposed “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule will help construction projects move forward in a timelier manner, clearly limit federal jurisdiction over water and wetlands, and continue to protect our nation’s clean water. Please contact the EPA today to let them know that you support clear federal clean water permitting guidelines.

For more information contact Melinda Tomaino at tomainom@agc.org or (703) 837-5415.
AGC News
Texas and West Virginia Have Biggest Number and Percent of Annual Job Gains as Louisiana and Maine Trail; Georgia and Alaska Have Largest One-Month Gains, While Illinois, Delaware and Minnesota Experience Worst Losses

Thirty-seven states added construction jobs between February 2018 and February 2019, although construction employment increased in only 16 states between January and February, according to an analysis by AGC of America of Labor Department data released recently. Association officials said the slowdown may reflect the impact of widespread severe weather on construction last month as well as a growing shortage of qualified workers, and they urged federal officials to allow contractors to hire year-round construction guest workers while protecting American jobs and reducing incentives for individuals to enter the country illegally.
Webinar Will Focus on Steps Firms Can Take During the Week of May6th to Support National Construction Safety Week’s Goal of Making Our Industry Even Safer
AGC of America is hosting a free webinar on Wednesday, April 17th to provide information and suggestions for how firms and chapters can get involved in this year’s National Construction Safety Week. Click here for more information about the webinar and to sign up to participate. The webinar begins at 2 p.m. eastern and will last one hour. AGC of America is the first-ever Signature Sponsor for National Construction Safety Week, the annual industry-led event designed to highlight steps construction firms are taking to improve jobsite health and safety.



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