NECA NextGen Conference Recap
This week, NECA hosted the NextGen Fly-in with NECA members from Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, and Ohio in attendance. Attendees heard from congressional speakers and other government affairs professionals, preparing them for their meetings and success on the Hill. They had over 50 meetings with their representatives to discuss two vital pieces of legislation.
H.R. 1536 -- the Leveraging and Energizing America's Apprenticeship Program (LEAP) Act
With the enactment of over $2 trillion in infrastructure legislation, there is a serious need to build the next generation of skilled electricians. This legislation would offer a one-time tax credit per new apprentice of $1,500 for contractors hiring new apprentices that are registered with the U.S Department of Labor or a state apprenticeship agency. The credit can also be used for pre-apprenticeship graduates currently enrolled in an apprenticeship program. The bill would be fully paid for through an offset: cutting printing waste by barring the federal government from producing publications that are available online with an exception for seniors, Medicare recipients and in communities with limited internet access.
H.R. 2726 – the Small Business Payment for Performance Act
On federal projects, the government may issue change orders without the contractors' consent and often do not abide by change order rules, like formalizing change orders in writing. This legislation would allow businesses to request an equitable adjustment to the contracting officer if the contracting officer places a change order without the agreement of the small business. It also requires the federal government to pay at least 50% of costs incurred from the change order upon receipt of the equitable adjustment.
NECA's Take: Representatives were asked to cosponsor these important pieces of legislation. Based on House rules, 290 cosponsors are needed to bring legislation to the floor for a vote. Only 216 are required for passage. With the momentum from this conference, we encourage all NECA members send letters to their Members of Congress to reach 290 cosponsors. Take action today!
Acting Secretary Julie Su Testifies
On Tuesday, Acting Secretary Julie Su testified at the Education and Workforce Committee to give an overview of the policies and budget of the Department of Labor for FY24. During her hearing she testified to funding increases the Department needs around working safety, increasing apprenticeships, and wage theft enforcement. In her testimony, she highlighted that the current lack of resources has forced the Department to limit the scope of the actions they are able to take.
NECA's Take: NECA has been urging for the Senate to pass her nomination as quickly as possible. Acting Secretary Su will then be able to oversee the final regulations of Davis-Bacon, Independent Contractor, Project Labor Agreements, and other labor priorities.
NECAPAC Total 6/9/23 - $287,294
Operational Fund Total 6/9/23 - $136,745
NECA On the Move
This week, the NECA Government Affairs met with Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), Rep. Henry Cueller (D-TX), and Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL).