In The Mix: A Message from President & CEO Laura O’Neill Kaumo
Months of negotiations on the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) ended last Friday night when a bipartisan majority of the House of Representatives approved a central pillar of President Biden’s domestic agenda. While gaining consensus took longer than had hoped, the legislation’s passage brings five years’ worth of the most significant investment in the nation’s roads, bridges, tunnels, and airports in decades. Thanks to all of you who engaged in the process and made sure your elected representatives knew how important this legislation is to our industry. ACPA’s priority will now be to ensure we have a seat at the table as federal, state, and local governments begin the process of allocating their shares of the nearly $550 billion in new surface transportation funding.
Next up on the agenda in Washington, D.C., is the Build Back Better legislation. ACPA is tracking the bill and working to identify potential opportunities for concrete pavement. Of note is a provision authorizing a $900 million grant program for the use of low-carbon materials. More to come on that in the upcoming weeks as we work to better understand the potential impacts and opportunities for our industry.
In addition to my visit last week with Charles Stuart and the Southwest Concrete Pavement Association, I also made a stop in Oklahoma. There, I was able to spend some time with Brent Burwell and one of our member companies, Duit Holdings, learning more about some of the Oklahoma/Arkansas Chapter initiatives. They’ve got a great team and are doing a fantastic job promoting concrete pavement in the region. In the nearly four months since I’ve joined ACPA, I’ve visited 11 states to talk about the paving market, and met with the chapter affiliates where applicable. Each one brings new ideas, enthusiasm, and positive energy to our organization. I look forward to working more closely with all our affiliates in 2022 as we look to put the IIJA funding to good use growing the concrete pavement market in every part of the country.
The countdown is on for Huntington Beach. Our hotel block is officially filled. However, the Hyatt has graciously agreed to extend our rates through the end of this week and opened a few more rooms for any last-minute registrants. If you’re planning on attending the Annual Meeting and haven’t booked your room, hurry before they’re sold out.
Finally, we check in with where ACPA National Staff has traveled in the past week, share our well wishes to Todd LaTorella as he leaves the MO/KS Chapter, and mourn the loss of longtime ACPA member and friend Paul Corr. Thanks again for reading our newsletter.