Leaders from federal agencies make major announcements
On November 8, federal construction contractors descended on Washington, D.C., to meet with major federal construction agencies and members of Congress at the AGC Federal Contactors Conference
. Representatives from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, General Services Administration, and Small Business Administration, participated, with several agencies making significant announcements about their respective programs. Among the discussions included the new federal contractor vaccine mandates, challenges surrounding construction material price inflations, the recently passed bipartisan infrastructure bill, and ways the industry and federal agencies can work together to meet the challenges and deliver projects in a safe and efficient manner. Presentations and other information from the conference were made available to attendees. For more information, please contact Jordan Howard at Jordan.Howard@agc.org or (703) 837-5368.
Members send nearly 100,000 messages to Congress to make it happen
On Monday, November 15, President Biden will sign the AGC-backed Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill, also known as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), into law. This bill will become law after a determined effort by AGC and its members—sending nearly 100,000 messages to Congress—to push it over the top. As a reminder, AGC put together this summary
and also this myth v. fact
document. Additionally, a breakdown of what’s in the bill for each construction market can be found here: Highway Contractors
; Utility Contractors
; Direct Federal Contractors
; Building Contractors
; and Other Markets
(Transit, Rail, Waterways, Airports).
AGC is working to block the inclusion of policies that would negatively impact military construction contractors in a final National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) bill—a must-pass, annual defense bill. The House of Representatives passed its version
of the NDAA in September and the Senate is expected to begin floor debate on its version
as soon as November 15. Among other things, these policies—if included in the final bill—would: require prime contractors and subcontractors to be licensed in the state of the military construction project; establish local hiring preferences; impose subjective criteria into the suspension and debarment process that would make it easier to blacklist contractors; and require contractors to exceed a 20 percent registered apprenticeship goal.
Congressional Democrats continue to take things out and put new things into their AGC-opposed
human infrastructure bill—formally titled the Build Back Better Act. But one thing remains consistent: labor provisions impacting the construction industry remain at the forefront of their agenda. The latest iteration of the bill includes numerous pro-unionizing provisions and preferences to unions through new labor enforcement and penalties.
On November 4, the White House announced
that the deadline for direct federal contractors to have their employees fully vaccinated under the federal contractor vaccine mandate will be same as the new OSHA ETS: January 4, 2022. Previously, the deadline for direct federal contractors was December 8, 2021. It is important to note that federal contractors will still see the contract clause mandating vaccination in federal solicitations, new contracts, etc., as none of the other dates relevant to federal contractors have changed. As of Nov. 4, the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force
website has been updated to reflect the extended deadline.
Significant CMMC revisions to make compliance more practical
After months of internal review, the Department of Defense announced
it will make significant changes to the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) program, now called CMMC 2.0
. Among these changes are: reducing the number of companies that would require a 3rd party assessment, reducing the CMMC rating from 5 levels to 3 levels, suspending CMMC pilot programs until a final regulation, allowing for annual self-assessments for certain levels, and bringing back Plans of Action and Milestone (POAM). These changes were met with opposition from some stakeholders
who argue that these changes are counter to DoD policies and President Biden’s recent Executive Orders increasing cybersecurity reporting requirements for businesses. AGC has communicated the difficulty many contractors have had implementing these new cybersecurity requirements and the challenges the CMMC model brings. DOD acknowledges the challenge of being 100% compliant with CMMC, but suggest a firm’s “policies, plans, processes, and procedures” may offset the need for full compliance. AGC will continue to follow this issue and will update members as development grows. For more information, contact email@example.com or (703) 837-5368.
AGC prepares for litigation; provides ETS summary & compliance webinars
On November 5, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) officially published its long anticipated COVID-19 vaccination and testing emergency temporary standard
(ETS). AGC and other construction industry allies are preparing to see OSHA in court to defend the industry’s interests. In the meantime, to help AGC members digest this 490-page ETS, the association compiled a construction industry-oriented summary found HERE
. In addition, AGC held a webinar series
covering the practical, contractual, and outside solutions AGC members may want to consider. For more information, please contact Kevin Cannon at firstname.lastname@example.org or Nazia Shah at email@example.com.
Help us generate a comprehensive outlook for 2022 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 here
. AGC of America will use the survey results to help make the case with elected and appointed officials in support of key member priorities. The more people who complete the survey, the more effective the results will be in supporting our work on your behalf.
Deadline of December 15 is fast approaching
The purpose of the CSEA is to recognize those construction companies who excel at safety performance. The CSEA closely examines each candidate's commitment to safety and occupational health management and risk control. Unlike other safety award programs that limit the criteria to frequency rates, the CSEA selection process is considerably more comprehensive.
The November/December 2021 issue
of Constructor magazine is now available! Meet Millie, the Labrador Retriever, in our cover story
and read about her contributions to construction workplace safety.