Although December is typically a slow month in Washington, “Team ACEC” put some points on the scoreboard – notably passage of the WRDA bill in the House and an ACEC-backed budget agreement to increase caps on discretionary spending by $63 billion over two years. Looking ahead, the New Year – an election year – will pose challenges, but we intend to prevail with final passage of the WRDA bill now in conference, MAP-21 reauthorization, and regulatory reforms. Our record 2013 ACEC/PAC fundraising of more than $755,000 (and still counting) gives us a powerful war chest to help propel our legislative agenda.
PRESIDENT’S MONTHLY UPDATE – January 1, 2014
- ACEC/PAC raised a record $755,000-plus in 2013 (we’re still receiving funds that were sent to us at year’s end), and ACEC/Illinois raised more than any other state: over $62,000, the most ever raised by an MO.
- Total firm membership in ACEC rose from 5,015 at the start of the fiscal year to 5,076 (1.3% gain) by the end of the second quarter, and employee strength grew from 328,063 to 372,253 (a whopping 13.5% gain) during the same time period, reflecting the Council’s continuing value and appeal.
- House and Senate conferees continue to reconcile their Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) bills, with a final agreement expected in early 2014.
- Congress cleared an ACEC-backed budget agreement to increase caps on discretionary spending by $63 billion over two years and replace the impending automatic across-the-board sequestration with targeted cuts and federal fee increases.
- The House overwhelmingly passed legislation supported by ACEC to protect engineering firms and other businesses from so-called “patent trolls”.
- ACEC has joined in an amicus brief asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a federal circuit court case that upheld the EPA’s veto of a Corps of Engineers dredging permit issued three years earlier to a mining company.
- Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) introduced ACEC-backed legislation to raise the federal gas tax by 15¢/gallon and transition to a vehicle miles traveled (VMT) system to create a stable, long-term funding source.
- ACEC/PAC hosted fundraisers for Senator Ed Markey (D-MA), House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Bill Shuster (R-PA), and Reps. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), Derek Kilmer (D-WA), Dan Lipinski (D-IL), and Lee Terry (R-NE).