• AGC Advocacy Report

  • Michael Gifford, AGC Advocacy Director
    February 16, 2024

     

     

  • State

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Careers in Construction students and program staff testify in favor of an amendment to support AGC's Careers in Construction Colorado high school construction trades program at the State's Business Affairs and Labor Committee on Feb 15 at the state Capitol.
     
    AGC Leads Effort to Amend HB24-1095 Increasing Protections for Minor Workers
    AGC is the lead group along with Careers in Construction Colorado, the Construction Education Foundation of Colorado, the Colorado Homebuilders Association, and the Housing & Building Association of Colorado Springs, working to amend HB24-1095 Increasing Protections for Minor Workers. The Colorado Youth Employment Opportunity Act allows minor employees (under 18) to be exempt from the hazardous activities statute (use a power tool, go up on scaffolding, go down in a trench) if the employee is a student in an approved course of study and the employment is part of that course of study (AGC’s Careers in Construction Colorado high school trades program qualifies for this exemption for the 63 high schools and 3,000 students in the program). However, another part of the statute prohibits a minor from working more than 8 hours in a 24-hour period or more than 40 hours in a week, and there is no exemption in the current bill from that requirement. The current fine for an employer violating this statute on hours is $20. But this bill increases the fine to up to $27,000 and requires the CO Dept of Labor & Employment to provide a list of violating companies to the public upon request. AGC is asking the House Business Affairs & Labor Committee to add this exemption from the hours to the bill. The reason is that some AGC member firms now hiring some of the 3,000 students in the CICC program at 63 high schools have stated that if the bill is approved without the exemption, it is too risky to make a mistake and work a youth over 8 hours in a 24 hour period and 40 hours in a week (in the summer) so they will pull out of the CICC Paid Internship Program. AGC and partners had a panel of students testify about the effectiveness of the program and ask for the exemption from the hours requirement at the Business Affairs and Labor Committee on Feb 15. The bill was passed out of committee without the exemption by an 8-3 vote (all 8 Democrats yes and all 3 Republicans no) but is now sent to appropriations where we will continue to fight for this amendment. Stay tuned...
     
    AGC Continues Battle Against HB24-1008 Wage Theft
    50 AGC Members showed up at the capitol on Feb 8 and 15 and testified as Opposed to the bill that is proposed by the Carpenters Union and Towards Justice. 400 members sent emails to House members asking them to Oppose the bill through AGC’s Legislative Action Center. HB24-1008 Wage Claims Construction Industry Contractors allows a claim for unpaid or improperly paid wages by any tier of specialty contractor to be collected after 14 days by the state Labor Dept or a court from the general/prime contractor and places the burden for enforcement for wage claims on the general/prime contractor. This policy is much worse than the recently approved Wage Theft Ordinance in Denver and other wage theft laws around the country (except for California which has a similarly bad version on the books). AGC submitted a list of 15 amendments to the bill we need to drop our Opposition to the bill. 3.5 of those amendments (ones that help us the least) were added to the bill but we still have the 11.5 most important ones to go and we will still be Opposing the bill as we fight for these. NAIOP and BOMA are also opposed. Thank you to the Colorado Contractors Association, Colorado Association of Homebuilders, Hispanic Contractors of Colorado, NUCA, IEC, NAIOP, and BOMA, the Colorado Chamber, Denver Chamber, and Colorado Springs Chamber, C3 and others for also opposing this bill.
     
    Construction Litigation Reform Bill SB24-106 Introduced
    The long-awaited construction litigation reform bill SB24-106 Right to Remedy Construction Defects was introduced this week. The bill is presented by the Homeownership Opportunity Alliance (HOA) and AGC Advocacy Director Michael Gifford is a member of the policy committee and Executive Committee that drafted the bill. Rep. Shannon Bird and Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, both prominent moderate democrats, are Prime Sponsors of the bill. The bill seeks to establish a Right to Remedy any construction defect claims instead of drag them into a costly claim and/or court process. Another construction litigation bill was also introduced by republican Sen Paul Lundeen. SB24-112 Construction Defect Action Procedures seeks to make improvements to the construction defect claim process as well to help allow more condos to be developed.
     
    AGC Legislative Committee Meets in Feb and Takes Positions on New Bills SUPPORT
    HB24-1041 Streamline Filing Sales & Use Tax Returns SUPPORT
    HB24-1050 Simplify Processes Regarding Certain Local Government Taxes SUPPORT
    HB24-1095 Increasing Protections for Minor Workers AMEND
    HB24-1107 Judicial Review of Local Land Use Decision SUPPORT
    HB24-1125 Tax Credit Commercial Building Conversion SUPPORT
    HB24-1175 Local Governments Rights to Property for Affordable Housing MONITOR
    SB24-023 Hold Harmless for Error in GIS Database Data SUPPORT
    SB24-085 Sales & Use Tax Rebate for Digital Asset Purchases SUPPORT
    SB24-104 Career & Technical Education & Apprenticeships MONITOR
    SB24-106 Right to Remedy Construction Defects SUPPORT
    SB24-112 Construction Defect Action Procedures SUPPORT
     
    AGC Advocacy Director Michael Gifford speaks with Joint Budget Committee Chair Rep. Shannon Bird about additional funding for K-12 School Construction.
  • Federal

    AGC Testifies on Buy America
    AGC member Ty Edmondson, CEO of T.A. Loving Company, testifies before Congress on the need to improve implementation of new Buy America requirements. - Read more
     
    AGC Buy America Administrative Action
    AGC and coalition allies file an administrative action to address the Administration’s opaque and unbalanced Buy America Build America Act implementation that risks delays and cost increases for housing, transportation, water infrastructure projects, and more. - Read more
     
    AGC Testifies on Small Business Challenges
    AGC member Joel Lipsky, President of Lipsky Construction, testifies before Congress on payment challenges federal construction small business contractors face when working for federal owners and the impacts of the regulatory onslaught. - Read more
     
    EPA Tightens Air Standard
    The EPA lowers the primary annual air quality standard that could lead to restrictions on equipment use and delays in the permitting process and the eventual loss of federal highway funding. - Read more
     
    AGC Seeks Supreme Court Action
    AGC of America seeks U.S. Supreme Court action to bar enforcement of vague stormwater permit language that opens up contractors to increased and unclear liability via citizen lawsuits, state regulators, or the EPA. - Read more
     
    Federal Contractors Conference
    Register today for the premier conference for federal construction contractors to discuss the latest projects, policies, and contracting issues facing the industry with federal agencies. - Read more
     
    Construction Safety, Health & Environmental Conference
    Submit a session proposal for AGC’s 2024 Construction Safety, Health & Environmental Conference, July 16-18, 2024, in St. Louis, MO. - Read more