AGC of America
AGC of Texas
Alabama Utility Contractors Association
Arizona Utility Contractors Association
Associated Pennsylvania Constructors
Associated Utility Contractors Of Maryland *
Connecticut Construction Industries Association
CIC of Westchester County & Hudson Valley *
Engineering Contractors Association
General Contractors Association Of New York
Georgia Utility Contractors Association
Indiana Constructors Inc.
Long Island Contractors Association
Maryland Transportation Builders & Materials Association
Michigan Infrastructure & Transportation Association
Minnesota Utility Contractors Association*
National Rural Water Association
New Mexico Utility Contractors Association
Ohio Contractors Association
Public Works Contractors Association of Maryland
Tennessee Road Builders Association
United Contractors *UCA of Anne Arundel County
Utility Contractors Association of New England *
Utility & Transportation Contractors Association of New Jersey *
Contractors Association Of West Virginia
Wisconsin Underground Contractors Association
* Steering Committee Member

December 3, 2018

MIDTERM ELECTION IMPACT

As a result of the Tuesday special election in Mississippi, the new Senate will consist of 53 Republicans and 47 Democrats, meaning that the Republicans had a net gain of 2 seats over their current majority of 51-49. Key Advocates is monitoring committee makeups and other organizational aspects and will report on any changes that may impact the CWCC. Minor changes are anticipated. As for Senate policy priorities in the next Congress, Senator McConnell identified three – health care reform, middle American tax reform and infrastructure. Nothing from the Senate Democrat Leadership as of yet.

In the House of Representatives, more dramatic changes. The Democrats will have as many as 235 seats (currently at 234 with one race still undecided, the Democrat leading in it) – a majority in the House is 218. As a result, many organizational changes from the current committee assignments are anticipated and are being tracked by Key Advocates. Most of these decisions will be reached in December. The Democratic Caucus held its leadership elections this week. Congresswoman Pelosi was nominated Speaker subject to formal approval by the full House on January 3. The Republicans also selected their leaders with Congressman McCarthy chosen as Minority Leader. NJ Democrat Frank Pallone is expected to lead the House Energy & Commerce Committee, which has broad jurisdiction over critical industry issues including water, environmental remediation, and energy. UTCA of NJ has a long standing relationship with Congressman Pallone and has always been a superb advocate for our issues. On priorities for the new Congress, Congresswoman Pelosi listed three–ethics reform, prescription drug costs, and infrastructure.

INFRASTRUCTURE, THE COMMON DENOMINATOR?

The WRDA Bill (previously reported by the CWCC) stands out as a model for legislative action on infrastructure given the lack of progress on a transformative infrastructure package. If rhetoric is going to translate into a major infrastructure package the split in Congressional leadership must address the elephant in the room: revenue. With many of the ideas promoted by former Trump Administration advisors as “voodoo economics” concepts related to revenue and leveraging existing and new revenue through bonding authority or some other measure must be addressed if there is going to be any breakthrough. The CWCC will be looking for progress on reauthorizing the Clean Water SRF and doubling the annual funding appropriation like WRDA did for the Drinking Water SRF.

FY 19 Federal Funding Generally

Congress passed a Continuing Resolution extending funding until Dec. 7 at FY18 levels for those appropriations bills not enacted by Oct. 1. That includes the Interior (SRF funding) and Transportation Appropriations Bills which are currently in conference. It does not include the Energy and Water Appropriations Bill (Corps of Engineers) which was signed into law on Sept. 21.

PREPARATIONS FOR WATER WEEK 2019

As previously reported and affirmed in a recent conference call with CWCC members, the CWCC will evolve the annual DC Fly-In (traditionally held concurrent with the ARTBA/TCC Fly-In Meeting in May) into participation with relevant national organizations during Water Week (held during the first week of April). Details will be available later in December and will be sent out immediately.

Water Week has three primary events, a Policy Fly-In (Plenary Sessions / Program Updates), a Joint Congressional Briefing and a Congressional Reception. We anticipate the formal events around Water Week 2019 to look something like this:

  • Tuesday, April 2
    • National Water Policy Fly-In (sample agenda from last year)
    • CWCC Member Event (TBD)
  • Wednesday, April 3
    • National Water Policy Fly-In Continued (Early AM)
    • Joint Congressional Briefing (Late AM)
    • Hill Visits (Afternoon)
    • Water Week Congressional Reception (5-8 PM)
  • Thursday, April 4
    • Hill Visits

You can review this website for a perspective on how the 2018 Water Week was structured: https://www. waterweek.us/

KEY ADVOCATES REPORT

Included with this notice is Key Advocates recent report which is current to the end of November.