Association News

Road Gang Focuses on Senate Transportation Bill

At the biweekly meeting of The Road Gang* in Washington, DC, last week, members of the group heard from U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee staff, who discussed the America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act of 2019 (ATIA).

As proposed, ATIA authorizes $287 billion over five years, including $259 billion for formula programs to maintain and repair America’s roads and bridges. The total represents a substantial  increase over FAST Act levels. The legislation includes provisions to improve road safety, streamline project delivery, protect the environment and grow the economy. 

As we reported previously (ACPA TODAY, July 31), the federal Highway R&D Program, including the Technology and Innovation Deployment program, also gets substantial bumps in the Senate proposal (22.7% and 100%, respectively). With those increases, the ACPA-led AID-PT program** ($12M/year for concrete and asphalt technology implementation and deployment, that helps fund the majority of CP Tech Center’s federal contracts) is included and “enhanced” with some additional reporting requirements.

The funding and financing portions of the bill (not within Senate EPW’s jurisdiction), are also in the process of being developed. Committee staff are hopeful financing can be rolled together into a package that can be introduced and voted on in the next several months. 

It is important to acknowledge that the Senate EPW Committee delivered a surface reauthorization bill more than a year early, and should be commended for their leadership, says Leif Wathne, who adds this is one of several proposals that will be advanced in the normal process of eventually reaching agreement among lawmakers in both Chambers of Congress and the White House.  

ACPA remains fully committed to working with both the Senate and the House to produce and pass a robust, effective final reauthorization before the expiration of the FAST Act next year.

Follow this link to see ACPA’s government affairs repository.
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*  The Road Gang is an informal group of business and government executives, highway engineers and consultants, press and public relations specialists, company representatives, and trade association officials from the highway transportation industry in the Washington, D.C. area. The Road Gang serves the dual purpose of promoting fellowship and providing for the interchange of ideas among “Washington’s Transportation Fraternity.”

** The Accelerated Implementation and Deployment of Pavement Technologies (AID-PT) is a provision first included in the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP 21).  This ACPA-led initiative created both a mechanism and funding for the delivery of pavement technology.  In 2015, Congress included the program in the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, which provides funding through 2020.

News from Capitol Hill

This is the latest installment of highlights of PCA’s “This Week in Washington” update. Interested in seeing more?  Become an ACPA Advocacy Interest Member.* Advocacy Interest Members are eligible to participate in the Legislative Issues Committee (LIC). Click here to join!

  • With the end of August recess, Members of Congress have returned for three weeks. Officially, there are 13 legislative days before the next recess period, although the Senate will meet for 15 days this month. Year to date, U.S. Senators have introduced 2,442 bills and taken 252 roll call votes, 16 of which have become law. In the lower chamber, U.S. Representatives have introduced 4,214 bills, taken 514 votes and enacted 40 of those into law. With issues such as the economy, trade wars, the Democratic Presidential Campaign, the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), gun violence and natural disasters drawing attention away from legislative issues, it will be difficult to predict what business will be finished in the next three weeks.
  • The deadline every year to fund the federal government is September 30, so Congress will need to agree on either a short- or a long-term solution before the next recess. There are also 10 other legislative items that expire on the same date. Congress will also need to pass a defense authorization bill, which they have done every year since 1961. Lawmakers also should consider the Violence Against Women Act reauthorization and two dozen tax breaks or “tax extenders” that expired at the start of 2018.
  • The PCA Government Affairs team moved into new offices at 200 Massachusetts Avenue, NW 200, 2nd Floor Washington, D.C. 20001. 

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* Advocacy Interest Membership is a special individual membership category. To be eligible for membership in this category, a member must be a stockholder, owner, director, or employee of a member admitted to any other class of membership (Article IV, Section a-i, and l). In addition, to become and remain eligible, individuals must affirm their Advocacy Interest Membership annually.

Follow this link to see ACPA’s government affairs repository.

 

See the Latest Concrete Pavement Progress

The third-quarter 2019 issue of ACPA’s CONCRETE PAVEMENT PROGRESS (CPP) magazine is now available.  In the 3rd quarter isssue, we cover projects in North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida.  We also include another installment of the popular construction law column by Tom Olson and Rielly Lund of Olson Construction Law, an ACPA member.  You can view the current issue online using our digital flipbook option.

CPP traces its roots back to 1965, but in its current form, the publication is more popular than ever, thanks to a clean, quick-to-read format, large photos, and short summaries of projects.  Shouldn’t your most recent concrete pavement construction, rehab or CPR project be featured in the magazine? 

Click here for more information or to submit a project story for consideration, for subscription information, editorial/photo guidelines and other information about CPP!

See Highlights from CP Road Map and NCC

The latest issue of the National Concrete Consortium (NCC) News* provides an update on the CP Road Map plan jointly developed and implemented by concrete pavement stakeholders, including ACPA and the CP Tech Center. Here are summaries of three reports that caught our eye:

Investigation of the Iowa DOT bridge deck epoxy injection process – This report summarizes how the injection of epoxy resin into the cracks and voids on concrete overlays has been used across Iowa.  The technique has had positive results in preserving concrete overlays, which have been used on bridge decks in Iowa since the 1970s.  

Environmental Impacts and Design on Performance – This report details a study of the effects of environmental factors and pavement design on pavement performance in the absence of heavy loads. Results showed an average of 36% and 24% of total damage was related to environmental factors for flexible and rigid pavements, respectively, at 15 years.

A Cost-Effective Ultra-High Performance Concrete (UHPC) – This report presents the development of UHPC using locally available materials in Colorado.  Locally sourced materials are said to reduce construction costs when compared to commercially produced products. The report examines implications of various constituent types with an emphasis on silica compounds, steel and polypropylene fibers.

Click here to see these and other reports.

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* The NCC E-News is the newsletter of the Long-Term Plan for Concrete Pavement Research and Technology (CP Road Map), a national research plan developed and jointly implemented by the concrete pavement stakeholder community. If you’d like to find out more about the CP Road Map or learn how you can get involved, contact Dale Harrington (dharrington@hceservices.com | 515.290.4014). The NCC E-News is produced by Dale Harrington and Sabrina Shields-Cook. 

ISCP Calls for Conference Papers

The International Society for Concrete Pavements (ISCP) is reminding authors and co-authors whose abstracts were accepted that the deadline for submitting final papers to the technical committee is  September 30. 

The 12th International Conference on Concrete Pavements (ICCP 2020) will be held August 30 through September 3 in Minneapolis.  Click here for additional information.

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