AGC Advocacy Report
Michael Gifford, AGC President & CEO
April 15, 2019STATEImportant Read on Upcoming Proposed BillsSB19-196 is a bill by the union building trades to implement a state project procurement system that would make it very difficult for non-union firms to bid or propose on state projects. AGC was able to make changes to the bill to allow open-shop firms to still have an equal chance to perform state projects by:
SB19-196 was approved by the full Senate today with AGC backed amendments and will go to House next.AGC backed bill to implement sales tax simplification in Colorado was signed by Governor Jared Polis last week.The carpenters union has proposed a Wage Theft bill that would increase the penalty for wage violations from a misdemeanor to a felony, allow a private right of action, and make virtually any independent contractor your employee for purposes of enforcing the wage theft provisions (think non-payment of UI, Work Comp, and tax withholdings). AGC is on a team with the Denver Chamber and C3 to amend this bill and is making significant progress.Other News
- Substituting a prevailing wage system on state projects for the best value procurement system originally proposed.
- Reducing the bill scope to state projects only (no local gov’t projects like K-12, or local projects that receive state funding like BEST Grant funded K-12 projects)
- Reduce mandatory apprenticeship utilization and graduation rates from all trades on a project -to MEP trades only.
- Minimum graduation rates for qualifying MEP apprenticeship programs were reduced from 50%, to 15% for 5 years, then 20% for 5 years, then 30% at 10 years.
- Removed all references to required union-like benefits from CM/GC, Design-Build, and Competitive Sealed Bidding statutes used by 44 state building agencies
- Increased the project size floor from $50,000 to $500,000 to match existing statute.
FEDERALAGC-Backed Work Opportunity Tax Credit Bill IntroducedWould Permanently Extend the Tax CreditOn April 10, Reps. G.T. Thompson (R-Pa.), Tom Reed (R-N.Y.), Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.), Tom Rice (R-S.C.) and Tom Suozzi (D-N.Y.) introduced AGC-backed legislation to make the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) permanent. Created more than two decades ago, WOTC provides tax incentives to employers who hire certain disadvantaged groups, such as individuals dependent on public assistance, qualifying veterans, individuals with physical or mental disabilities, and the long-term unemployed. The credit enjoys broad bipartisan support but has consistently been extended in the past on a short-term basis. It is currently scheduled to expire at the end of 2019. Read MoreAGC-Supported Invest in America Act IntroducedCould Spur Billions in Commercial Construction InvestmentOn April 10, Reps. John Larson (D-Conn.) and Kenny Marchant (R-Tex.), introduced the AGC-supported Invest in America Act (H.R. 2210), which would repeal a decades-old tax provision that artificially limits foreign investment in the United States. By some estimates, enacting this legislation would result in $65 to $125 billion in increased infrastructure and real estate investment, and 150,000 to 280,000 construction and construction-related jobs. Read More
- SHOP Act (HB19-1008), a bill to help add shop class back into high schools, was approved by Governor Jared Polis on March 7, 2019
- AGC supported HB19-1055 which allocates another $8M annually to the BEST Grant Program (from marijuana excise tax revenue) clears House Education Committee 12-1 and House Finance Committee 13-0 and now waits at the House Appropriations Committee.
- Capital Development Projects Included in the State’s Long Bill (Budget Bill)
- AGC Legislative Committee members met this week and reviewed another batch of just introduced bills. Click here to review the AGC Bill Tracker.
- AGC lobbyists Jeff Weist, Laura Long and Amy Attwood spent the week contacting members of the state House and Senate members about the various bills AGC is supporting and opposing.
- Initiative 300 Right to Survive is on the May 7 ballot in Denver. Homeless advocates are seeking the right to permanently occupy public sidewalks and parks for the homeless community. AGC is a leader of the No on 300 campaign and urges a No Vote. AGC supports helping the homeless but does not believe Initiative 300 is the answer. AGC will send out a Voter Guide this week.
- Lakewood 1% Residential Growth Cap Initiative clears final hurdle and is headed to ballot in 2019. AGC is on the team that will oppose the measure.