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The people I've met through AGC have helped me both personally and professionally. Every contractor needs those resources and those relationships. If you want to be successful, well then, you need AGC.

Phyllis Harden

Legislative & Special Projects, Pine Bluff Sand & Gravel
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Infrastructure

May 4, 2018

Construction employment increased by 17,000 jobs in April and by 257,000 jobs over the past year while firms boosted pay to help recruit new workers, according to an analysis of new government data by the Associated General Contractors of America. Association officials noted that the increases in pay appear to be attracting more former construction workers back into the job market, but cautioned that labor conditions remain extremely tight.

April 27, 2018

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is working to meet Clean Air Act deadlines to review, revise and implement national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) – with nitrogen oxides and ozone at the forefront of recent actions. President Trump recently issued a memo that directs the Agency and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to take a series of “actions” to facilitate state and industry compliance with NAAQS and reduce barriers to economic growth.  This includes decisions for the air permits needed to construct new facilities or to expand or modernize existing facilities.  The memo notes that these air construction permits have become increasingly difficult to obtain as NAAQS have become more stringent. The White House said in a press release that the “Administration will reform NAAQS implementation to provide States with a more efficient process and to promote economic growth."

April 27, 2018

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently proposed a rule that would streamline the regulation of hazardous waste aerosol cans (currently managed under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Subtitle C, generally because of their ignitability, and subject to stringent rules on handling transport and disposal) by adding them to the existing federal list of materials that can be managed under the universal waste management system. EPA’s universal waste rules provide a streamlined hazardous waste management system for common industrial wastes like batteries, pesticides, mercury-containing equipment, and lamps.  (“Authorized” states would choose whether or not to adopt the new universal waste rules into their state programs.  Some states have already added them to their universal waste lists.)  This would likely simplify handling and disposal for contractors and save firms money (e.g., no manifest required for transport). Notably, because aerosol cans are often the only hazardous waste stream produced on a construction site, classifying them as universal waste could change a company’s “generator status” and exempt it from RCRA Subtitle C hazardous waste requirements. Universal wastes do not need to be counted toward a hazardous waste generator’s inventory for determining whether the generator is classified as a Very Small Quantity Generator, Small Quantity Generator, or Large Quantity Generator.

April 26, 2018

The construction industry can benefit from the federal funding for clean diesel activities available now.  Non-profit organizations, like AGC Chapters, are eligible to apply for funding. Construction companies may find themselves well positioned to partner with their local chapters or with other eligible agencies or organizations to create and implement clean diesel programs funded through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) national clean diesel grant program.

April 20, 2018

Thirty-eight states and the District of Columbia added construction jobs between March 2017 and March 2018, while 29 states added construction jobs between February and March, according to an analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America of Labor Department data released today.  Association officials said the job gains are coming amid strong private-sector demand and new public-sector investments in school and airport construction.

April 19, 2018

On April 12, the U.S. Senate confirmed attorney Andrew Wheeler, former lobbyist and congressional aide, to serve as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s deputy administrator.  AGC had urged the Senate to confirm Mr. Wheeler’s nomination. If EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt were to leave the agency, Wheeler would be next in line to become acting administrator.

April 19, 2018

AGC Urges Congress to Fund Program

April 19, 2018

On April 18, AGC submitted a response to the National Labor Relations Board’s Request for Information regarding representation-case procedures.  AGC also signed onto a response submitted by the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace (CDW).  Both responses call on the Board to rescind or modify its 2014 rule that changed the procedures for union representation elections.  The rule is often called the “quickie” or “ambush” election rule because it expedites the procedures in a way that can disadvantage employers that oppose a union organizing campaign.

April 13, 2018

Recent meetings and calls for action at the federal level indicate that the Trump Administration is mounting a coordinated and collaborative approach to target all sources of lead exposure.  There are a slew of regulatory developments focused primarily on re-evaluating, clarifying, and potentially expanding the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) current program that addresses lead paint hazards – the Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) program.  In addition, federal agencies are considering other sources of lead exposure, including drinking water and soil.  Following is an update on federal activities related to lead pipes, paint, and dust.

April 13, 2018

A draft U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) directive would encourage the agency to concurrently process two related permitting reviews when a project needs them—Section 408 permissions under the Rivers and Harbors Act (RHA) and Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 404 dredge and fill permits—a priority among a number of AGC’s environmental review and permitting reform recommendations. RHA Section 408 requires USACE to evaluate and grant permission for any construction projects that alter existing USACE infrastructure—e.g., bridge/road construction project over, or by, a USACE-built levee, port construction on, or in, a USACE-dredged harbor. Where a construction project needs both a Section 408 permission and Section 404 permit, USACE does not currently begin the Section 404 permitting review process until it completes the Section 408 permission process, which further delays construction projects.

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