Federal Contractor Report
March 2021
Federal Government
Greatest threat to the construction industry—union and open-shop

Take action now and tell your members of Congress and President Biden to oppose the misleadingly-named “Protecting the Right to Organize” Act (PRO) Act (H.R. 842S. 420), as the House of Representatives is anticipated to vote on it this week. The PRO Act would provide unions with additional and significant economic weapons 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, eliminate all prohibitions on picketing 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; effectively repeal 27 states’ Right-to-Work laws; and impose mandatory third-party arbitration in which a union and employer do not reach agreement, undermining the collective bargaining process. To contact your federal officials click here and for more information from AGC on the PRO Act, click here.
Help AGC fight for the construction industry and contribute to the fund
The Associated General Contractors of America Construction Advocacy Fund (“Fund”) launched a $250,000, multi-faceted advocacy and public relations campaign to block enactment of the PRO Act. The campaign raises awareness and urges action in 10 targeted House districts that could determine whether or not the PRO Act advances in the legislative process using attention-grabbing videos ads, a website where visitors can learn about the bill and write their representative, digital ads on platforms like Hulu, Google Display, YouTube as well as on local news sites. The Fund’s campaign also underwrites a radio media tour and helps with organizing local media events. Through corporate contributions from AGC Chapters and construction companies, the Construction Advocacy Fund finances critical AGC advocacy campaigns, litigation and research that influences policy decisions and achieves pro-construction industry results. To learn more and to contribute to the Fund, click here.
Includes significant funding for infrastructure with new federal strings attached
Democratic leadership introduced an updated version of the “Climate Leadership and Environmental Action for Our Nation's” (CLEAN) Future Act that sets a goal to cut national greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030 and net zero by 2050. The massive bill authorizes $565 billion over a decade, an increase from the $316 billion proposed in last year’s version of the bill, to meet the goals. A substantial amount of the proposed funding is designated for utility infrastructure, particularly energy, water, climate resiliency and environmental justice related sectors. The bill also includes a substantial number of new requirements for some new programs, including government-mandated project labor agreements. AGC welcomes new and robust federal investment in all these forms of infrastructure, but will oppose the inclusion of government-mandated project labor agreements and other mandates as it moves through the legislative process.
Would prohibit government-mandated PLAs on federal & federal-aid projects
On February 24, Sens. Todd Young (R-Ind.) and Tim Scott (R-S.C.) and Reps. Ted Budd (D-N.C.) and John Moolenaar (R-Mich.) introduced the AGC-supported Fair and Open Competition Act (bill numbers pending) that would prohibit government-mandated project labor agreements (PLAs) on direct federal (i.e., projects for federal agencies like the Army Corps of Engineers, General Services Administration and Department of Veterans Affairs) and federal-aid (i.e., federally funded transportation projects for state departments of transportation) construction projects. The bill would not prohibit all PLAs, as a firm could still voluntarily enter into a PLA.
Educational webinar series available 
AGC and Smith, Currie & Hancock LLP are pleased to provide a five-session course on the basics of construction contracting with the federal government. This course is intended to educate companies considering entering the federal construction contracting marketplace, as well as the less-experienced professionals in construction companies already in the federal arena, about its many peculiarities and risks.  These 90-minute WebEd sessions will cover the law and practicalities of federal contracting with a view to helping construction companies learn to identify and avoid problems. You can click here to learn more and click here to purchase this course. For more information, contact jordan.howard@agc.org or (703) 837-5368.
Federal Agencies
March 17, 2021 - 2 - 3:30 p.m. ET

Register today. The Department of Defense (DOD) will begin including mandating cybersecurity certifications for all companies that do business with DOD. Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) will be required as “go/no go” in DOD solicitations. Join AGC’s Jordan Howard and Baker Tilly’s Principal Matt Gilbert, one of the first 100 provisional assessors, for an informative webinar to help construction contractors prepare. The WebEd will focus on what organizations should do now to prepare for CMMC and key considerations for the future. Click here to register. For more information, contact jordan.howard@agc.org or (703) 837-5368.
In February, AGC of America and USACE Headquarters published a joint study on construction contract modification (USACE-AGC Joint Study on Construction Contract Modifications. This study discusses government findings, a review of several AGC contractors and USACE change logs and recommended best practices. As stated in the paper, USACE HQ is committed to working further with AGC to create solutions to improve the change order process. In support of these joint goals, AGC and USACE will be working together to develop a standard “Playbook” for change orders that both industry and the USACE can utilize. The goal is to help align expectations, provide transparency into challenges and obstacles, and drive accountability for more timely resolution of change orders. For more information, contact jordan.howard@agc.org or (703) 837-5368.
In response to a directive from President Biden, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued guidance to state unemployment insurance agencies that expands the number of instances in which workers may be eligible for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA). These newly eligible workers self-certify that they refused to work or accept an offer of work at a worksite not in compliance with coronavirus health and safety standards, with states being responsible for investigating and accepting or denying claims.
Smith, Currie & Hancock, LLP
Watermark Solutions
AGC News
Have you taken advantage of our messaging feature in the AGC Connection App yet? You can easily chat with fellow AGC members one-on-one or in groups without ever needing to leave the app! This tool can be a great way to cut down on emails and communicate instantly. If you haven’t downloaded, visit www.agc.org/connect/agc-connection!
According to the National Association of Women in Construction, women make up 9.9 percent of the construction industry in the United States. March 7-13, 2021 is Women in Construction Week, putting the spotlight on the more than 1million women in the construction workforce and promoting the numerous opportunities for women. For more information on WIC, please visit https://www.nawic.org/nawic/default.asp. A feature article in the March/April issue of Constructor magazine tells the story of the women team members at Flatiron, a member of multiple AGC chapters, who for the first time ever are wearing certified Class-3 safety vest designed specifically for female bodies.
Private nonresidential market shrinks 10 percent since January 2020 with declines in all 11 segments; growing cancellations, proposed labor law change threaten to harm employers and workers alike
Construction spending rallied in January as private nonresidential construction increased for the first time in seven months, according to an analysis of new federal construction spending data by AGC of America. Association officials said that nonresidential construction spending remains below pre-pandemic levels and that rising materials prices and proposed labor law changes threaten the sector’s recovery.



We would appreciate your comments or suggestions.
Your email will be kept private and confidential.