1. NECA Priority Issues Advance in National Defense Authorization Act
On July 2, the House Armed Services Committee unanimously approved the National Defense Authorization Act of 2021 (H.R. 6395), the wide-ranging piece of legislation authorizing large swaths of programs and reforms across the Department of Defense and a handful of other federal agencies. This year’s legislation included many key NECA priorities, most notably the inclusion of language similar to H.R. 2344, the Small Business Payment for Performance Act of 2019, introduced by Rep. Pete Stauber (R-MInn.) and Rep. Mark Veasey (D-Texas) which would require 50% partial payment upon receipt of a federal unilaterally ordered change order. The amendment (#456), which received unanimous bipartisan support, was shepherded by Rep. Jared Golden (D-Maine), Rep. Andy Kim (D-N.J.), Rep. Xochitl Torres Small (D-N.M.) and Rep. Paul Cook (R-Calif.).
NECA’s Look Ahead: NECA is extremely grateful for the hard work and consideration of all staff involved in the NDAA markup process. The legislation now heads to the House floor for a vote by all members of the House. Following that approval, the bill then moves to the consideration of a conference committee made up of both Representatives and Senators.
2. INVEST in America Act Passed in House, Faces Challenge in Senate
On Wednesday the House passed H.R. 2, Investing in a New Vision for the Environment and Surface Transportation in America (INVEST in America) Act. The bill passed 233 to 188 largely on party lines. The bill, which is supported as a starting point on larger infrastructure negotiations, is unlikely to be taken up by the Senate without significant changes. The final bill section by section summary text can be found here.
NECA’s Look Ahead: Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY), Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works, is championing an opposing highway reauthorization bill that was unanimously approved by his committee in July 2019. During the floor proceedings, NECA successfully defeated an amendment that would have repealed Davis-Bacon prevailing wage protections by a bipartisan vote of 147 - 274. NECA will continue to monitor this bill as it moves through Congress.
3. PPP Extension Quickly Approved by Congress
The Senate and the House fast tracked a Paycheck Protections Program (PPP) extension through August 8, 2020, through unanimous consent. NECA continues to advocate on behalf of the industry to ensure that our contractor needs are met during this time.