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APRIL 4, 2011
House Passes FAA Authorization The House of Representatives April 1 passed by a vote of 223 to 196 a four-year Federal Aviation Administration authorization bill that includes a funding cut to the Airport Improvement Program (AIP). AIP grants, which support airport runway and other infrastructure improvements, would drop to $3.18 billion in the first year of the authorization and $3.0 billion for the remaining three years—a roughly $500 million reduction from current levels. The Senate passed a two-year authorization earlier this year with an increase in AIP levels to $4.0 billion in year one and $4.1 billion in year two. The two chambers will now begin trying to reconcile the differences between the measures.
Hearings Highlight Funding Challenge A pair of House Appropriations Committee hearings last week highlighted the challenges of increasing transportation infrastructure investment without increasing revenues into the Highway Trust Fund. Both Continued on page 3
Jumpstart Highway & Transit Bill to Boost U.S. Economy, ARTBA Tells Congress “In the spirit of March Madness, it’s time to get the surface transportation bill on the court and in play,” ARTBA Chairman Bill Cox March 30 told the House Highways & Transit Subcommittee. Cox, president of Corman Construction, Inc., was among 40 witnesses to participate in the two- day hearing on how to improve the surface transportation program. “We recognize writing and enacting a multi-year highway and transit reauthorization bill will not be easy,” Cox said. “The most important thing members of this Committee can do at this stage, however, is to produce legislation and jumpstart the process. Until this is done, we are missing an opportunity to provide a long-term foundation for economic recovery and renewed competitiveness.” He reiterated ARTBA’s support for realigning the
surface transportation programs to achieve clearly defined national priorities such as goods movement. The ARTBA chairman called for reforms to ensure the use of federal transportation funds is performance-driven, transparent and accountable. And he put forward recommendations to accelerate the project review and delivery process, and leverage federal funds through partnerships with
the private sector. The hearing follows a month of listening sessions and field hearings the committee hosted across the nation to solicit input on the bill. House T&I Committee Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) indicated the panel will now begin the process of writing a multi-year measure. Read the full text of Cox’s testimony.
Submit your nominations for 2011 Globe Environmental Awards & Highway Worker Scholarships! ARTBA Washington Newsline
Annual Output Value—The annual value of transportation construction in the United States will surpass $120 billion in 2010. To put this in context, it exceeds the output value of the following U.S. industry sectors: auto repair & maintenance ($116.8 billion); advertising ($106.9 billion); farming ($97.5 billion); motion pictures ($82.7 billion); aircraft manufacturing ($82.4 billion); and coal mining ($29.8 billion), to name a few.
Hearings Highlight Funding Challenge
The Annual Output Value of the U.S. Transportation Construction Industry Exceeds Other Important Industry Sectors
Continued from page 1 $140
$116.8 $106.9 $97.5
in billions $
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood and Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez appeared before the committees to discuss the Obama Administration’s proposal for a six-year $551 billion surface transportation bill. When asked how the bill could be paid for, both indicated they would work with Congress to find a solution and LaHood suggested tolling could help close the gap between current and proposed investment levels. House Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Tom Latham (R-Iowa) criticized the White House for not including specifics on how to pay for proposed investments and adjourned one of the hearings just 45 minutes into the proceedings.
$80 $60 $40
$20 $0 Transp. Const. Auto Repair & Advertising Maint.
Aircraft Coal Mining Manufacturing
© The 2010 U.S. Transportation Construction Industry Profile, ARTBA Transportation Development Foundation © Source: ARTBA’s U.S. Transportation Construction Industry Profile, www.transportationcreatesjobs.org.
Register: ARTBA Federal Issues Program & TCC Fly-In.
Upcoming Events Visit our Events Page for more information. 3rd Annual ARTBA Transportation Construction Law & Regulatory Forum April 6–7 Washington, D.C. [Add to Calendar]
ARTBA Federal Issues Program & TCC Fly-In May 23–25 Washington, D.C. [Add to Calendar]
ARTBA Young Executive Development Program May 23–26 Washington, D.C. [Add to Calendar]
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International Bridge Conference June 5–8 Pittsburgh, Pa. [Add to Calendar]
TransOvation 2011 Workshop September 7–9 Near Dulles Airport, Va. [Add to Calendar]
Transportation Development Hall of Fame Gala Dinner at TransOvation 2011 September 7 Near Dulles Airport, Va. [Add to Calendar]
ARTBA National Convention
ARTBA Public-Private Partnerships Conference
October 2–5 Monterey, Calif. [Add to Calendar]
November 15–16 Washington, D.C. [Add to Calendar]
ARTBA REGIONAL MEETINGS Northeastern
November 28–29 New York, N.Y. [Add to Calendar]
November 30–December 1 Tampa, Fla. [Add to Calendar]
December 5–6 Los Angeles, Calif. [Add to Calendar]
December 7–8 Chicago, Ill. [Add to Calendar]
ARTBA P6 Scheduling Academy, April 19-21 in Nation’s Capital One of the nation’s leading experts on Critical Path Method (CPM) is returning to Washington, D.C., as the lead instructor for the April 1921 ARTBA P6 Scheduling Academy. If you are a scheduler, estimator or project manager, this course is built just for you.
Dr. Jay Newitt, a founder of Brigham Young University’s Construction Management Program, will teach participants how to use schedules to manage and track all aspects of a transportation project—people, materials, key operational benchmarks and payment schedules. They also will have “handson” experience with the most widely used scheduling software, Primavera Project Planner (P6).
Newitt has trained more than 5,000 project managers and superintendents on the principles of CPM scheduling and developed a method to teach the complex principles in an easy to understand and effective way. Register at www.artbatdf.org or by contacting Laura Spitz.
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Products & Services New Digital Advertising Opportunities Available! New for 2011, ARTBA is offering digital advertising opportunities, in addition to traditional print options. New options include: the “Washington Newsline,” digital Transportation Builder magazine, website advertisements (including homepage spotlight rotator), email signature sponsorship, and more! Contact Liz Cavallaro or view the 2011 ARTBA Media Kit for more information.
NATIONAL DATA AND 50 STATE FACT SHEETS • Economic and Job Creation Impacts of Transportation Construction • Transportation Network Profile • Road and Bridge Conditions • Economics of Interupted Service • Commuting Patterns • U.S. Productivity and Competitiveness Challenges
To learn more about other products and services available, visit the ARTBA Store today!
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ARTBA Washington Newsline
Overheard “While we know that Congress is not receptive to a fuel tax increase, we would like the record to reflect that the trucking industry is willing to accept a fuel tax increase to help fund infrastructure.” Barbara Windsor, president and CEO of Hahn Transportation Inc., and chair of the American Trucking Association, told members of the House Highways & Transit subcommittee.
“I’m standing here with people who tried to beat me, really tried to beat me… [but] [W]hen it comes to infrastructure, there’s a different atmosphere.” Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), commenting on the sometimes strange nature of politics, during a Capitol Hill news conference with U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue. The Chamber supports Boxer’s call for increased infrastructure investment, yet also actively supported her opponent in the 2010 U.S. Senate race. 4
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Legislative & Regulatory News Bipartisan Leaders Rally for Infrastructure Investment Senate Environment and Public Works Chairman Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.), Los Angeles, Calif., mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D), and Mesa, Ariz., mayor Scott Smith (R), gathered March 30 in the nation’s capital to call for increasing investment in the nation’s transportation infrastructure. The speakers discussed resurrecting the Build America Bonds program for infrastructure investment, establishing a National Infrastructure Bank, and strengthening the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) program which provides loans, loan guarantees, and credit assistance to eligible surface transportation projects of national and regional significance. U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Tom Donohue also participated and called for increasing the federal gas tax saying “it’s the only way you’re going to get this thing to work.”
Surface Trade Up 20 Percent in January The U.S. DOT’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics March 29 announced January’s U.S. surface trade with Canada and Mexico had risen 19.5 percent from January 2010. Trade utilizing surface transportation between the nations reached $67.7 billion in January, rising an impressive 42.7 percent in the last two years from January
2009 and surpassing even the pre-recession levels of 2008 by 4 percent. These figures reinforce the increased pressure that will be placed on the nation’s transportation network as the U.S. economy continues to strengthen.
ARTBA Urges Continued Funding for Voluntary Diesel Retrofits ARTBA, along with a coalition of more than 400 environmental, health, industry and labor organizations March 28 wrote Congress urging restoration of $50 million for the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA). DERA allows the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to spend general fund money on grants to be
used for voluntary retrofits on vehicles, including construction equipment. The letter stresses the program’s positive effects on both the economy and air quality, as diesel engines used in construction projects continue to get cleaner with new technologies.
ARTBA Briefs Congress’ Western Caucus on Proposed EPA Wetlands Guidance ARTBA VP of Environmental & Regulatory Affairs Nick Goldstein briefed staff from the House and Senate Western Caucuses April 1 on the U.S. EPA’s proposed Clean Water Act (CWA) guidance. Goldstein explained the EPA guidance would expand CWA jurisdiction by expanding
Fostering Innovation TRB Newsletter: March 29, 2011
ARTBA is pleased to make available another service for members that highlights new research, technologies, industry best practices and information resources available to the transportation design and construction industry. This material comes from the Transportation Research Board. Read the most recent newsletter.
Learn from Leading Innovators
There is no doubt that innovation helps the bottom line, benefits customers and improves efficiency—but how can you gain the skills you need to innovate in your own firm? By attending ARTBA’s TransOVation 2011 workshop. Recognized innovators Ted Zoli, winner of the 2010 MacArthur Foundation Genius Award and ENR Award of Excellence winner John Hillman will lead educational sessions and help you learn what skills and techniques they use to innovate. The program is September 7-9 and will be held near Dulles, Va. Visit transovation.net to learn more.
the definition of “traditional navigable waters.” This regulatory effort could possibly extend CWA jurisdiction to many previously excepted areas, including roadside ditches. Such an expansion of regulatory authority would lead to increased delays for transportation improvements and more opportunities for time consuming litigation.
ARTBA Urges Withholding Repeal ARTBA March 30 joined its colleagues in the Government Withholding Relief Coalition in a letter to the U.S. Senate urging the repeal of a provision that will require all levels of government—state, local, and federal—to withhold three percent of most government payments to contractors. The provision is scheduled to take effect January 1 and several legislative attempts are underway to delay and/or repeal the requirement entirely as government data has shown the cost of implementation— just by the government—would vastly exceed the amount of tax dollars ultimately collected. For more information, please contact Hank Webster.
1099 Reporting Provision Scheduled for Senate Floor After months of criticism from both sides of the aisle, a controversial requirement of 2009’s Healthcare Reform law may soon be repealed. The Senate is scheduled next week to debate H.R. 4 which would repeal a looming requirement that companies issue IRS Form 1099s to all other persons and companies with which they have transactions of $600 or more
28TH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL BRIDGE CONFERENCE® JUNE 5-8, 2011 • DAVID LAWRENCE CONVENTION CENTER • PITTSBURGH, PA.
TECHNICAL SESSIONS, WORKSHOPS & SEMINARS: Featuring a new National Bridge Industry Workshop with key public and private sector speakers focusing on bridge preservation, asset management, contract management and procurement, P3s and FHWA’s “Highways for Life” and “Every Day Counts” programs. PREMIER EXHIBITOR OPPORTUNITIES: Service providers and manufacturers: Market your firm’s products and services to industry executives in the growing national and international bridge market. Exhibitor discounts available. For more information or exhibitor opportunities, contact ARTBA’s Jim Colleton at 202.289.4434. in a calendar year. ARTBA has individually and through coalitions urged Congress to repeal this needless provision citing the enormous paperwork burden it would impose during an economic recovery.
Economic News Highway & Bridge Contractor Employment Up in February Employment by highway and bridge contractors in February 2011 rose 3.2 percent over a year ago, according to the latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is a positive sign for the highway and bridge construction industry, which has been deeply impaired by the economic downturn. Contractors employed an average of 289,000 workers in 2010, compared to 291,300 in 2009 and 327,300 in 2008. The construction industry’s unemployment rate dropped to 20 percent in March, down from 25 percent in March of last year. The nation’s overall unemployment rate fell to 8.8 percent in March—capping the strongest two months of hiring since before the start of the recession.
Safety News Traffic Deaths Hit 60-Year Low; VMT Up Traffic fatalities on U.S. roadways plummeted to levels not seen since the presidency of Harry Truman (a onetime ARTBA member), according to U.S. DOT estimates released April 1. The agency said 32,788 people were killed, a three percent decrease from 2009. A regional breakdown showed the greatest decline in fatalities occurred in the Pacific Northwest states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska, where they dropped by 12 percent. Arizona, California and Hawaii had the next steepest decline, nearly 11 percent. It is not unusual for traffic deaths to decline during an economic downturn because motorists cut back on travel. The number of deaths fell in the early 1980s and early 1990s, when the U.S. economy was struggling. Another likely cause for the decline is improved safety hardware, such as cable median barriers, improved guardrail, brighter signage and pavement markings, which is being
continuously upgraded on our nation’s roadways. But drivers spent more time in their cars in 2010, making the estimates noteworthy. The number of miles traveled by American drivers in 2010 grew by 21 billion, or 0.7 percent, compared with 2009.
Meetings & Events ARTBA to Co-Sponsor California High Speed Rail Conference ARTBA is co-sponsoring the California High Speed Rail Authority’s REFI Conference April 12 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The conference is for contractors, engineering firms and suppliers to understand the high speed rail procurement process. The conference will be followed by a summer RFQ and a RFP later in the year. The Association for California High Speed Trains will hold a business networking reception April 11 at the Grammy Museum, which includes a VIP museum tour. ARTBA has tickets available. Contact Larry Russell for further information.
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