Tag Archive for 'transportation'

ARTBA Leads the Way on Transportation Infrastructure Investment & Innovation

ARTBA Chairman Bob Alger, left, testifies at a July 16 congressional hearing.

By Mark Holan, editorial director, ARTBA

ARTBA’s volunteer leaders, members, and staff this week in Washington, D.C., advocated for the transportation design and construction industry on several fronts:

  • July 16: ARTBA Chairman Bob Alger, chairman of The Lane Construction Corporation, told a congressional hearing that the best way to increase investment in public transit and other transportation options is to provide a permanent revenue solution for the federal Highway Trust Fund (HTF).  “Congress’s chronic failure to fix the Highway Trust Fund program threatens all federal surface transportation programs,” he said. His remarks drew praise from the top Democratic and Republican leaders of the House Subcommittee on Highways and Transit.
  • July 17: More than 80 people from 26 states attended the 6th Annual National Workshop for State & Local Transportation, a signature program of ARTBA’s Transportation Investment Advocacy Center™ (TIAC). “The importance of this event likely isn’t lost on anyone here,” ARTBA President and CEO Dave Bauer said during his welcome remarks. While 31 states have increased their gas tax since 2013 and taken other measure to increase investment, the federal gas tax has not been increased since 1993 and the trust fund revenue shortfall has not been addressed.
  • July 17-19: Professionals from design and construction firms, federal and state government agencies, and the legal and finance sectors gathered for the 31st Annual Public-Private Partnerships (P3) in Transportation Conference. In spirited panel discussions, industry experts discussed shifts in P3 risk, the impact of federal deregulation, and new market opportunities. ARTBA’s P3 Division announced its annual award winners, mentored the next generation of industry leaders, and named its new officers for the coming year.

ARTBA is pressing members of the Senate Environment & Public Works (EPW) Committee to develop a surface transportation reauthorization bill before Congress recesses for its summer break.

“It’s common to belittle the outlook for action on infrastructure,” Bauer said in his welcoming remarks to the P3 Conference, “but over the last two years we’ve had $10 billion of additional investment, and the EPW Committee is working on a reauthorization bill one year early instead of multiple years late.”

Bauer emphasized, however, that, “While we are not where we want to be, we are clearly moving in the right direction.”

ARTBA Chairman Bob Alger Calls for Permanent Highway Trust Fund Revenue Solution at House Hearing

ARTBA Chairman Bob Alger Calls for Permanent Highway Trust Fund Revenue Solution at House Hearing

Association Also Voices Support for Transit Capital Investment Program

American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) Chairman Bob Alger today called on Congress to increase investment in the transit Capital Investment Program (CIG) but said it is best achieved in the broader context of legislation that provides a permanent revenue solution for the federal Highway Trust Fund (HTF).

Alger, chairman of Connecticut-based Lane Construction Corporation, represented the association at a House Highways & Transit Subcommittee Hearing on “Oversight of the Federal Transit Administration’s Implementation of the Capital Investment Grant Program.”

While voicing support for the CIG program, Alger said, “Congress’s chronic failure to fix the Highway Trust Fund program threatens all federal surface transportation programs, including transit projects.”

The next Highway Trust Fund crisis looms shortly after the 2015 FAST Act surface transportation law expires in October 2020, Alger said. He noted Congress and previous administrations had initiated more than $140 billion dollars in General Fund transfers and budget gimmicks to prop up current federal highway and public transit investment levels.

While the CIG program is traditionally supported with general revenue dollars through the annual appropri­ations process, continued uncertainty or disruption to HTF program funding will adversely impact all federal surface transportation programs, including CIG. As an example, during the lead up to the FAST Act, such uncer­tainty about future federal investment and HTF solvency caused seven states in 2015 to delay roughly $1.6 billion in planned transportation projects, ARTBA said.

Alger highlighted three key options that Congress should consider to permanently fix the HTF: 1) raise the federal gasoline and diesel user fee rates; 2) apply a freight-based user fee to heavy trucks; and 3) institute a fee to ensure electric vehicle users also help pay for the system from which they benefit.

In a recent comprehensive 32-page report with legislative recommendations for reauthorization of the FAST Act, ARTBA called on Congress to boost investment in the CIG program beyond the current $2.3 billion annual levels.

Alger’s testimony also addressed the need for the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to improve its regulatory and project delivery process so that projects can be completed on time and within budget. According to FTA’s Capital Cost Database, which compiles as-built costs for 54 federally funded transit projects, average costs for delivering these projects increases an average of five percent annually. As a result, a project that costs $100 million in 2019 would cost $163 million to build in 2029, or more than twice the rate of general inflation.

Another key factor that can keep transportation construction projects on schedule is the use of dispute resolution boards. Such entities should include members recommended by the project owner, contractor or industry and should set up quick and efficient timelines so that members can carefully follow its progress, Alger said.

Read Alger’s full written testimony.

Established in 1902, ARTBA is the “consensus voice” of the U.S. transportation design and construction industry in the Nation’s Capital. For more information visit artba.org

Ad Campaign Targets Key Lawmakers and Highlights Urgent Need for Investment to Modernize Infrastructure

The transportation construction industry and business community are launching an ad campaign on two fronts this summer to keep the pressure on Congress and the Trump administration for action in 2019 on a permanent Highway Trust Fund (HTF) fix and a new transportation infrastructure package.

A key campaign component is a social media focused effort aimed at generating grassroots support. It uses “Conversation Cards” targeted at the Twitter followers of dozens of key members of the House Ways & Means and Senate Finance Committees, which have the responsibility for developing the funding mechanisms for surface transportation legislation or an infrastructure package. Twitter followers of these lawmakers can send this message: “Our national transportation infrastructure is severely underfunded, which is crippling our economy and endangering lives. The time for Congress to fix this is now—ask @ [member of Congress] to start work today to get our nation moving in the right direction again.”

The effort is complemented by digital and Twitter ads aimed at members of Congress, their staffs and other D.C. policymakers that spotlight the impacts of traffic congestion on the U.S. economy and highlight how the nation is investing in infrastructure at half the rate of the Space Age nearly 50 years ago. The ads drive the target audiences to an opinion editorial in Politico. The piece notes the key priorities: “Job #1 is providing a permanent, dedicated, growing, user-fee based HTF [Highway Trust Fund] revenue stream to support the increased transportation investments advocated by President Trump and members of Congress from both parties. Job #2 is ensuring expanded HTF [Highway Trust Fund] resources in a transportation infrastructure package are dedicated to projects that will facilitate long-term regional and national economic growth while creating new jobs.”

The campaign is a joint initiative of the Transportation Construction Coalition (TCC) and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce-led Americans for Transportation Mobility (ATM) coalition. The TCC and ATM ads will run throughout the remainder of June and during July.

Established in 1996 and co-chaired by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) and the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), the 31 associations and labor unions that make up the TCC have a direct market interest in the federal transportation program. A complete list of members can be found at www.transportationconstructioncoalition.org.

The Americans for Transportation Mobility (ATM) coalition was established by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in 2000. It brings together businesses, the labor and union sectors, transportation stakeholders, and the public to advocate a robust transportation infrastructure grid in the United States. This includes promoting ongoing and sustainable funding through policies and broad-based initiatives.

For more information visit www.artba.org

ARTBA Announces: 59 New Transportation Project Professionals Earn ANSI-Accredited Safety Credential –Program Hits 360 “Safety Certified” Mark

Fifty-nine professionals from 21 companies or agencies representing 17 states have earned the “Safety Certification for Transportation Project Professionals™” (SCTPP) credential over the past four months, the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) Foundation said today.

Since its launch in late 2016, 360 individuals from 83 companies representing 37 states and the District of Columbia have earned the prestigious credential, which is valid for three years.

The program was launched with the aim to significantly reduce—or ideally eliminate—the 700 motorist and worker fatalities, and nearly 50,000 injuries that occur annually in and around U.S. transportation project sites. It is targeted at significantly elevating safety awareness among the thousands of non-safety professionals in the industry—planners, designers, owners, field supervisors and inspectors—who are in decision-making roles from project conception through completion.

It was designed to bring thousands of more “eyes” to the task of identifying and mitigating potential hazards for workers and motorists commonly found in transportation work zones—skills identified through the certification.

In May 2018, the program earned the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accreditation under ISO/IEC 17024:2012 international standard.

The latest list of “Safety Certified Transportation Project Professionals” includes:

  • Joel Anderson, project manager, Lunda Construction Company, Hilbert, Wis.
  • Stephen Anderson, safety manager, Bancker Construction, Carle Place, N.Y.
  • Joshua Andrews, HSE professional, Allan Myers, Port Deposit, Md.
  • Edmundo Armendariz, international SH&E manager, HDR, Omaha, Neb.
  • Candido Bocanegra, construction project engineer, TXDOT, San Benito, Texas
  • Jared Browder, supervisor, TXDOT, Stephenville, Texas
  • Michael Carroll, project manager, Burns & McDonnell, Kansas City, Mo.
  • William Clawson, safety specialist, TXDOT, Austin, Texas
  • Kenny Cuevas, safety officer, TXDOT, Bryan, Texas
  • Trey Curtis, area manager, Austin Bridge & Road, L.P., Irving, Texas
  • Nicholas DeAlba, HSE professional, Allan Myers, Phoenixville, Pa.
  • Ricardo Diaz, health & safety manager, Wright Brothers Construction Co., Inc., Riceville, Tenn.
  • John Dowdell, risk manager, The Walker Company, Mount Sterling, Ky.
  • Jason Dupree, director of maintenance, TXDOT, Atlanta, Texas
  • Aaron Dziuk, construction inspector, TXDOT, New Braunfels, Texas
  • John Ferguson, safety officer, TXDOT, Live Oak, Texas
  • Steven Fitter, safety coordinator, Crossland Construction Company Inc., Jenks, Okla.
  • Jesse Flake, general transportation tech III, TXDOT, Buffalo, Texas
  • Rene Garza, construction manager/senior resident engineer, TXDOT, Pharr, Texas
  • Jorge Garza, safety officer, TXDOT, San Antonio, Texas
  • Jared Groves, assistant area engineer, TXDOT, Munday, Texas
  • Fred Guiliano, safety officer, TXDOT, San Angelo, Texas
  • Melissa Hatton, engineering tech, TXDOT, Bryan, Texas
  • Joshua Hebert, construction inspector VI, TXDOT, Austin, Texas
  • Matthew Herbstritt, area engineer, TXDOT, Childress, Texas
  • William Herz, inspector II, AECOM, Birdsboro, Pa.
  • Michael Hines, safety officer, TXDOT, Abilene, Texas
  • Chris Houghton, transportation specialist, TXDOT, Fort Worth, Texas
  • Eric Hulme, director of safety, AWP, Inc., North Canton, Ohio
  • Jack Hutchens, area safety manager, Lane Construction, Manassas, Va.
  • Raymond Jaenicke, general transportation tech III, TXDOT, Madisonville, Texas
  • Stephen Kasberg, area engineer, TXDOT, Gatesville, Texas
  • Evan Larkin, HSE technician, Allan Myers, King of Prussia, Pa.
  • Christopher LaRocca, HSE specialist, Allan Myers, North Chesterfield, Va.
  • Kevin Lassiter, safety officer, TXDOT, San Angelo, Texas
  • Aaron Lease, HSE professional, Allan Myers, New Castle, Del.
  • Phillip LeBlanc, field engineer, Barriere Construction Company, LLC, Boutte, La.
  • Johnny Limbaugh, director of design-build, Wright Construction Group, Inc., Fort Myers, Fla.
  • Brian Link, project manager, Michael Baker International, Hershey, Pa.
  • Michael Machacek, senior project manager, TXDOT, Austin, Texas
  • Timothy Mask, safety officer, TXDOT, Mesquite, Texas
  • Scotty Massingill, supervisor, TXDOT, Hamilton, Texas
  • Stacey Meeks, safety manager, Ranger Construction Industries, Inc., Hernando, Fla.
  • Marcus Navetta, senior project manager, Austin Bridge & Road, L.P., Irving, Texas
  • Jeffrey Parisi, president, Parisi Construction Co., Inc., Verona, Wis.
  • Rodney Persall, transportation specialist, TXDOT, Mason, Texas
  • Magdalena Quintanilla, safety officer, TXDOT, Pharr, Texas
  • Jeffrey Raymond, superintendent, Austin Bridge & Road, L.P., Irving, Texas
  • Michael Rebstock, project manager, Barriere Construction, LLC, Baton Rouge, La.
  • Michael Seal, superintendent, Barriere Construction Company, LLC, Franklinton, La.
  • Hector Siller, construction project engineer, TXDOT, Pharr, Texas
  • Josh Simonson, construction manager, Lunda Construction Co., Black River Falls, Wis.
  • Jesse Sisco, area engineer, TXDOT, Lufkin, Texas
  • Terry Smith, safety manager, Sundt, Wynne, Ariz.
  • Mark Smith, safety officer, TXDOT, Tyler, Texas
  • John Stawinsky, assistant project manager, Superior Construction Co. Southeast, LLC., St. Augustine, Fla.
  • Brandon Trenter, HSE manager, Allan Myers, Dagsboro, Del.
  • Rebecca Wells, traffic discipline manager, TXDOT, Atlanta, Texas
  • Phillip Yrjanson, safety coordinator, DLZ Industrial, LLC, Fort Wayne, Ind.

The SCTPP exam contains up to 120 multiple-choice questions that probe knowledge in: assessing project risks; creating project safety plans; implementing and conducting ongoing evaluation of a site-specific operational safety plan; and conducting incident investigations.

Additional information about the program can be found at www.puttingsafetyfirst.org.

The SCTPP program is a signature initiative of the ARTBA Transportation Development Foundation, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt entity established in 1985 to “promote research, education and public awareness” about the impacts of transportation investment.

AGC of America Safety Award Winners