Construction groups including SMACNA and the MCAA are marking Infrastructure Week 2017, a coordinated effort to lobby lawmakers to invest in building.
The Construction Employers of America are working with the co-chairmen of the Congressional Building Trades Caucus to push Congress to pass an infrastructure bill.
During his campaign, President Donald J. Trump promised to push a trillion dollars in infrastructure spending.
Rep. Donald Norcross (D-N.J.), a former electrician and co-chairman of the caucus, said he wants to ensure any bill addresses the needs of specialty construction contractors.
“Working as an electrician, I learned the value of hard work while hanging hundreds of feet above the Delaware River lighting the Benjamin Franklin Bridge. I know we need to update our aging infrastructure and that, when we invest properly, we will add high-skilled, high-wage jobs,” Norcross said. “It’s great to stand alongside construction contractors and join them in supporting worker training and apprenticeship programs and protections, like Davis-Bacon. We desperately need to invest in our roads, bridges, rails, ports, airports, electric grid, pipes and more; simply put: it’s time to build.”
Republican Rep. David McKinley of West Virginia agreed.
“As an engineer, I understand how America’s construction workers helped build this great country,” he said. “From infrastructure investments to corporate tax reform to streamlining regulations, there are a host of options for federal policymakers to boost job growth, drive economic prosperity, and allow America to reclaim the mantle of infrastructure leadership on the world stage.”
The CEA cites a study by a George Mason University professor that says an additional $1 billion invested in nonresidential construction would add $3.4 billion to U.S. gross domestic product, $1.1 billion to personal earnings and create or maintain 28,500 jobs.
Besides the Sheet Metal and Air-Conditioning Contractors National Association and the Mechanical Contractors Association of America, the association’s members include the National Electrical Contractors Association, Signatory Wall and Ceiling Contractors Alliance, the Association of Union Constructors, FCA International and the International Council of Employers of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers,