Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal Passes Senate:

The bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act passed the U.S. Senate today with bipartisan support in a 69-30 vote, with 19 Republicans joined all 50 Senators in the Democratic caucus to approve the legislation. You can view ABC’s statement on the passage of the bill and section by section summary.

You may also view ABC’s priorities and wins included in the bill as well as concerns with several labor provisions and potential executive action from the White House.

ABC remained neutral on the legislation, neither opposing or supporting the bill. After the bill passed in the Senate, ABC sent a news release that notes the bipartisan accomplishments of the bill, while raising concerns over the implementation of the bill should it be signed into law and actions the administration has signaled it could take to limit participation from merit shop contractors. While the bill passed the Senate, it is not guaranteed to pass the House as Speaker Pelosi continues to insist on pairing with budget reconciliation at the demands of progressive Democrats that are essentially withholding votes for passage.

 

Democrats Begin Budget Resolution Process, Release Reconciliation Instructions:

Today, the Senate also began its “vote-a-rama” after Democrats voted to proceed to the budget resolution with reconciliation instructions. Yesterday, Democrats proposed a $3.5 trillion Budget Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022, and Majority Leader Schumer also released reconciliation instructions for Senate committees to write different sections of the final spending bill as it relates to their policy areas. The budget resolution will give committees specific caps on how much they can increase or decrease the deficit to fund programs and raise revenue within their jurisdiction. The resolution provides a target date of Sept. 15 for the committees to submit their reconciliation legislation.

Senate Democrats released the budget resolution, planning on approving it before adjourning for the August recess. If passed, this would be the first significant step to write and pass a detailed $3.5 trillion budget, which under reconciliation, only requires a simple majority for passage. The resolution will need to pass Congress with only Democratic votes, as Republicans are expected to vote solidly against the bill which they will not be consulted on, and is expected to include the tenets of President Biden’s American Families Plan, such as significant tax increases on corporations and individuals while implementing several expansive social policies.

Reports have also indicated that Democrats will seek to insert harmful labor provisions in the reconciliation package, which could include exempting union dues from taxes and monetary penalties for employers that interfere with workers’ union rights. Democrats might also look to include new requirements that would make it harder for workers to qualify as independent contractors and additional financial support for striking workers. The provisions would need to pass the scrutiny of the budget reconciliation Byrd Rule that prevents extraneous measures from passing through the reconciliation process, though Democrats believe the employer penalties and tax provision should be deemed germane to the federal budget.

Republicans are offering several amendments to push back on Democrats’ tax and spending plans and you can view these amendments through the Republican Policy Committee amendment tracker.

 

ABC Requesting Feedback on Issues Affecting Federal Contractors

Today, ABC member contractors received a survey link to gather feedback on various executive actions and proposed rulemakings from the Biden administration that affect federal contractors and the federal procurement process. These issues include government-mandated project labor agreements, local hire requirements, prevailing wage requirements, a proposed increase to the minimum wage of federal contractors, COVID-19 vaccine and testing requirements for on-site federal contractors and more.

We are asking federal contractor members to provide their thoughts on these issues so that ABC can use these insights to respond to various rulemakings and to provide feedback on other executive actions affecting federal contractors. We are asking members to respond to this survey by 5 p.m. ET on Monday, Aug. 16.

 

REMINDER – 2021 Congressional Recess Grassroots Toolkit

ABC National Government Affairs has posted this year’s Congressional Recess Grassroots Toolkit online, which is also available on National Connections. Chapters and members are encouraged to review and utilize this comprehensive resource with the latest legislative updates during the August recess period. Included in the toolkit are the 116th Congress Eagle Award recipients and their staff contact information.

Please contact Grassroots Manager Patrick McCarty ([email protected]) for any questions or feedback regarding the Grassroots Toolkit. Please contact Shreya Kanal ([email protected]) with any questions related to Eagle Awards.