Federal Contractor Report
November 2019
Federal Government
Jeopardizes long-standing employee and employer rights
Tell your U.S. Representative and Senators to oppose the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act (H.R. 2474/S. 1306). This bill is an unprecedented attempt to fundamentally change dozens of well-established labor laws to assist organized labor without regard to their detrimental impact on workers, employers — union and open-shop — and the economy. If enacted, the PRO Act would — among other things — allow unions to launch disruptive protests and pickets against any employer, even those having nothing to do with a labor dispute; impose a “backdoor card check” exception to employees’ well-established right to a secret ballot election; and impose mandatory third-party arbitration where a union and employer do not reach agreement, undermining the collective bargaining process. Click here to take action and send a message to your U.S. Representative and Senators.
For more information, contact Jim Young at jim.young@agc.org.
Military construction funding uncertainty remains
On Oct. 29, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, introduced a “skinny” National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of Fiscal Year 2020.  Despite both the House and Senate passing their versions of the NDAA over the summer, conference negotiations have stalled between the chambers. One debate is whether to backfill roughly $3.6 billion in military construction that the Trump Administration reprogrammed for projects along the southern border and whether the NDAA should limit the ability of Department of Defense to reprogram funds going forward. While the “skinny” NDAA would fund some military construction projects, it is far behind the nearly $17.8 billion in military construction the Senate NDAA passed in June. Chairman Inhofe said he remains hopeful a compromise can be found on the NDAA in the coming weeks, a bill that has passed every year for the last 58 years. AGC will continue to advocate for a Congress to pass a NDAA that fully funds military construction programs.
For more information, contact Jordan Howard at (703) 837-5368.
Federal Agencies
On Nov. 8, the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment (OSD) released part of Version 0.6 of the draft Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC). This version includes CMMC Levels 1-3, but not Levels 4-5. According to OSD, “CMMC Levels 4-5 are not included in this release because public comments are still being addressed.” Updates to Levels 4-5 are expected to be provided in the next public release. According to OSD, the CMMC model will continue to be improved with the finalization of Version 1.0 in January 2020. The Department of Defense (DOD) will begin including the final CMMC model as “go/no go” in all solicitations starting in Fall 2020. 

On Nov. 8, the Small Business Administration (SBA) published a proposed rule that makes significant revisions to its mentor-protégé program (MPP). This proposed rule marks the most significant revision of the program since its inception in 2016. The mission of the MPP is to help build a broad base of emerging business enterprises capable of performing high quality construction at competitive prices. The proposed rule would have significant implications for the government contracting community.
Beta.SAM.gov replaces FBO.gov 
On Nov. 7, the General Services Administration announced that Beta.SAM.gov is now the official source for federal contracting opportunities. The URL FBO.gov was retired and transitioned into beta.SAM.gov under “contract opportunities.”  The GSA transition was completed the morning of Tuesday, Nov. 12.
Smith, Currie & Hancock, LLP
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In the latest episode of AGC’s ConstructorCast, we talk with two leading economists covering the construction sector: Ken Simonson, chief economist for AGC, and Kermit Baker, chief economist for the American Institute of Architects. Don’t be put off by their titles, though — these guys speak English! Ken and Kermit provide a fast-paced overview of what to expect in the coming year for different categories of construction spending, labor availability and materials costs. They assess the broader economic environment and how various changes in economic growth or policy could affect contractors.
To receive the Data DIGest, Ken’s one-page weekly summary of economic news relevant to construction, email him at ken.simonson@agc.org. Visit AGC’s website at www.agc.org/learn/construction-data for construction-specific data and economic information. Access AIA’s business intelligence resources here: www.aia.org/business-intelligence.
Check out AGC’s new jobsite tour brochure that will assist you in hosting state and local elected officials on tours of construction jobsites. This brochure provides information on how to successfully plan and execute a successful jobsite visit with an elected official from the invitation to the thank you notes. As you may know, one of AGC’s advocacy goals this year has been to help member companies host job site tours for members of Congress to provide a hands-on learning experience of the construction industry. These events have been successful in discussing workforce development, infrastructure funding, federal regulations, and other issues critical to our members with those who have legislative authority over our industry. While AGC will continue to complete jobsite tours with members of Congress, we hope you will use this resource to host state and local elected officials on your construction jobsites.  
For more information or additional assistance, please contact Jenni Traver at jennifer.traver@agc.org.
Upcoming Events
AGC News
Construction technology provider and national trade organization launch grant program to help address industry need for better-fitting personal protective equipment (PPE) for women working at heights
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), falls are the leading cause of private sector worker fatalities in the construction industry. Everyone who works at heights, whether it’s on a roof, scaffolding, or the edge of a tall building, should have properly fitting safety harnesses, yet not all contractors have the supply they need to better protect women in construction. To help address this, Autodesk is funding a grant program with one of the largest construction trade organizations – the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) – to supply select, in-need member contractors with fall protection harnesses sized for women who work at heights.
Trade fights appear to be undermining demand for many types of private-sector projects; Association officials urge the Trump administration to quickly resolve disputes with China, the European Union and other countries
Construction employment increased by 10,000 jobs in October and by 148,000, or 2.0 percent, over the past 12 months, while construction spending decreased by 2.0 percent from September 2018 to September 2019, according to an analysis of new government data by AGC of America. Association officials said demand for construction is being undermined by uncertainty and tariffs that are part of a series of trade disputes with China, the European Union and other countries.
In honor of Veterans Day, the latest issue of Constructor magazine is dedicated to military personnel, past and present. Read up on real stories about a few individuals who now are serving their country in a slightly different way: by building the bridges, the roadways, the sports stadiums and more that U.S. citizens utilize every single day. The skills these individuals developed and honed during their time in the military appear to be a perfect fit with construction work, especially when it comes to teamwork and leadership.
Help us generate a comprehensive outlook for 2020 by taking the survey today
Each year around this time, AGC asks you – our members – to predict what next year will be like for your business.  AGC has partnered with Sage to prepare questions that focus on expectations for market performance, hiring, labor market conditions, etc.  Please take a moment to complete the survey.



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