AED News

AED Praises Lawmakers for Addressing Nation’s Skills Gap

June 22, 2017 6:54 pm

Brian P. McGuire, president and CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors (AED), issued the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives’ approval of the Strengthening Career & Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 2353), bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Career & Technical Education Act.

The AED Foundation recently commissioned two studies by the College of William & Mary quantifying the skilled worker shortage’s impact on the construction equipment industry and analyzing career and technical education (CTE) programs on a state-by-state basis. Visit aedfoundation.org/research/ to learn more about The AED Foundation’s research.

“Today, the House of Representatives took a positive step toward addressing the nation’s skills gap with approval of the Strengthening Career & Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 2353). By reflecting current workforce needs, empowering state and local entities, and emphasizing work-based learning opportunities, the bipartisan legislation provides tools to better prepare workers for well-paying careers and ensure that U.S. companies can seize new business opportunities.

“The greatest strategic challenge facing the construction equipment industry is the scarcity of skilled technical workers that is costing AED members more than $2.4 billion per year in lost revenue and economic activity. H.R. 2353 is an important part of the solution, along with a commitment by businesses, schools and government officials to collectively tackle the technical education crisis at all levels. Together, this will help our nation’s students acquire the skills needed to meet employer demands. Thank you to the bill’s sponsors for their leadership on this issue. The construction equipment industry looks forward to working with the Senate to get this important legislation to the president’s desk as soon as possible.”

U.S. House to Vote on AED-Supported Perkins Act Reauthorization Bill on June 22

June 21, 2017 6:58 pm

On June 22, the U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 2353). H.R. 2353, which AED strongly supports, reforms, modernizes and reauthorizes the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act. The Perkins Act, which hasn’t been updated in more than a decade, is the principal source of federal funding for the improvement of secondary and postsecondary career and technical education programs across the nation.

Yesterday, AED delivered a letter of support to all House offices urging lawmakers to approve this important legislation. Throughout the year, AED has urged lawmakers and the administration to make workforce development a primary focus and Perkins Act reauthorization is one of the association’s top legislative priorities.

In the support letter for H.R. 2353, AED’s President & CEO Brian P. McGuire emphasized a 2016 AED Foundation-commissioned study that found the shortage of qualified equipment service technicians costs equipment dealers $2.4 billion per year in lost productivity and foregone economic opportunity. He also discussed the latest report released in January, which concluded that while skills-based learning increases student’s lifetime earnings, most states still need to better prepare students for technical careers.

To urge your member of Congress to support the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 2353) visit AED’s voter resource page to identify your representative and their contact information. Call your member of Congress and urge them to vote “aye” when the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 2353) comes to the House floor on June 22.

To learn more about The AED Foundation’s recent research studies, visit here.

To read a fact sheet on the bill, visit here.

To read a more detailed bill summary, visit here.

To read the bill as reported to the U.S. House, visit here.

For more information about this legislation or AED’s government affairs program, contact AED’s Vice President of Government Affairs Daniel B. Fisher.

AED Commends Trump Administration for Focus on Addressing Skills Gap

June 15, 2017 7:19 pm

Brian P. McGuire, president and CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors (AED), issued the following statement in conjunction with President Trump’s executive order signing regarding apprenticeships and his administration’s focus on addressing the nation’s skilled worker shortage.

The AED Foundation recently commissioned two studies by the College of William & Mary quantifying the skilled worker shortage’s impact on the construction equipment industry and analyzing career and technical education (CTE) programs on a state-by-state basis. Visit http://aedfoundation.org/research/ to learn more about The AED Foundation’s research.

“AED commends President Trump for his leadership to address the nation’s skills gap and making educating the next generation of skilled workers a top priority.  Businesses, schools and government officials must collectively commit to tackling the technical workforce shortage at all levels. The president’s executive order allowing greater industry involvement and direction in developing and implementing apprenticeship programs is a positive step.

“The skilled worker shortage is costing construction equipment dealers approximately $2.4 billion per year in lost revenue and economic activity.  Pairing work-based learning opportunities with federal policies that better reflect current workforce needs while empowering state and local entities will help resolve the industry’s skilled worker deficiency, allowing AED members to better serve customers while growing their businesses and the overall economy. We look forward to working with the Trump administration and Congress to prepare workers for well-paying careers, ensure that U.S. companies are able to seize new business opportunities and make the United States more competitive in the global economy.”

AED Urges President Trump to Continue Cuba Engagement Policies

June 13, 2017 9:12 pm

Major news organizations are reporting that President Trump will announce revisions to the Obama administration’s efforts to normalize relations with Cuba. In a letter to the Trump administration, AED’s President & CEO Brian P. McGuire advised that a policy that continues engagement with the island is vital for the United States’ economic and national security interests.

In 2016, the association led two business delegations to Cuba, allowing dozens of equipment industry leaders to personally familiarize themselves with U.S.–Cuba relations. AED has also been actively engaging with lawmakers to lift the trade embargo against the island nation located just 100 miles from the United States.

McGuire touted the opportunities for American companies in Cuba, which industry representatives observed first-hard during the AED-led business delegations. “The island is awash with potential business opportunities for American companies,” McGuire stated. “Cuba has substantial infrastructure needs ranging from roads, bridges and highways to water systems and airports. Such projects provide markets for goods supplied by U.S. businesses, including construction equipment dealers and manufacturers.”

Unfortunately, even with the Obama administration’s steps toward normalizing relations with Cuba, U.S. companies are forced to the sidelines as our allies actively trade with Cuba while countries such as Russia and China fill the void left by the United States’ absence. Rolling back the policies will only further close off business opportunities and drive a greater wedge between the U.S. and Cuba.

“Our country’s stance toward Cuba is an outdated relic of the Cold War that hasn’t worked,” McGuire told President Trump. “Maintaining a decades-long failed policy while sacrificing economic and national security interests is ill-advised. Continuing to normalize relations in Cuba is the only way to effectively bring about political change on the island while opening a new market for U.S. goods, products and ideas.”

McGuire concluded that continued engagement with Cuba is consistent with President Trump’s vision for a stronger America. “Preserving, not reversing, recent efforts to engage Cuba fits directly in line with your desire to put ‘America first.’”

John Deere to acquire Wirtgen Group

June 1, 2017 1:54 pm

John Deere announced plans today to acquire the Wirtgen Group, the global leader in road construction equipment. This $5.2 billion deal will be the largest acquisition in the company’s history.

Headquartered in Germany, the Wirtgen Group has five premium brands across the entire road construction sector spanning milling, processing, mixing, paving, compaction and rehabilitation. Wirtgen’s highly complementary product portfolio enhances Deere’s existing construction equipment offering and establishes Deere as an industry leader in global road construction. The Wirtgen Group has a global footprint with approximately 8,000 employees and sells products in more than 100 countries through a large network of company-owned and independent dealers.

Max Guinn, President of Deere’s Worldwide Construction & Forestry Division, said, “This transaction enhances our global distribution options in construction equipment and enhances our capabilities in emerging markets. Spending on road construction and transportation projects has grown at a faster rate than the overall construction industry and tends to be less cyclical. There is recognition globally that infrastructure improvements must be a priority and roads and highways are among the most critical in need of repair and replacement.”

The Moline-based Deere said it “plans to maintain the Wirtgen Group’s existing brands, management, manufacturing footprint, employees and distribution network.”

Local and national infrastructure needs attending to

May 24, 2017 1:22 pm

This article was originally published in the Hanford Sentinel. Click here to view the original article.

The sinkhole on 11th Avenue in Hanford highlights a major problem that localities across the country are facing due to a failure to substantially invest in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure.

Whether it’s structurally deficient bridges, dams and levees or inadequate roads, airports and pipes, America’s infrastructure is insufficient, and our leaders in Washington can no longer forsake responsibility when it comes to much-needed maintenance and improvements.

Like the residents of Hanford, every day Americans are affected because officials deferred necessary upgrades. When emergency road closures occur, school buses are forced to reroute, limiting students’ time spent in the classroom. First responders are delayed reaching those in need. Businesses lose sales as detours divert traffic from main roads. Lost revenue and time wasted in traffic will never be recovered.

Our infrastructure is the lifeblood of our economy. It impacts our quality of life, the competitiveness of our businesses, and the safety and security of our country. All while spurring economic growth and creating well-paying jobs.

I urge Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Sen. Kamala Harris, Rep. David Valadao and Rep. Devin Nunes to work in a bipartisan manner with the California congressional delegation, their colleagues and the Trump administration to immediately address the nation’s infrastructure crisis. Further delay is unacceptable to Californians and the rest of the country.

Brian P. McGuire, President & CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors

Congress Must Follow South Carolina’s Infrastructure Leadership

May 18, 2017 8:56 pm

This article was published in the Palmetto Business Daily. View the original article here.

 

House Education Panel Advances AED-Supported Perkins Reauthorization Bill

May 18, 2017 4:58 pm

Earlier today, the House Education & the Workforce Committee unanimously approved the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 2353). H.R. 2353 reforms, modernizes and reauthorizes the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act. The Perkins Act, which hasn’t been updated in more than a decade, is the principal source of federal funding for the improvement of secondary and postsecondary career and technical education programs across the nation.

AED has urged lawmakers and the administration to make workforce development a primary focus and Perkins Act reauthorization is one of our top legislative priorities for this Congress. In the association’s letter of support for H.R. 2353, AED’s president & CEO Brian P. McGuire emphasized a 2016 AED Foundation-commissioned study that found the shortage of qualified equipment service technicians costs equipment dealers $2.4 billion per year in lost productivity and foregone economic opportunity. He also discussed the latest report released by The AED Foundation in January, which concluded that while skills-based learning will increase student’s lifetime earnings, most states have work to do to better prepare students for technical careers.

Following the bill’s introduction, McGuire said, “By reflecting current workforce needs, empowering state and local entities and emphasizing work-based learning opportunities, the legislation is a great step to address the industry’s skilled worker deficiency, allowing AED members to better serve customers while growing their businesses and the overall economy. We look forward to working with the House and Senate to get this important legislation to the president’s desk in the near future.”

The legislation now awaits consideration by the full U.S. House, which is anticipated later this year.

To learn more about The AED Foundation’s recent research studies, visit here.

To read a fact sheet on the bill, visit here.

To read a more detailed bill summary, visit here.

To read the bill, visit here.

Sandy Springs Water Main Break, Sinkhole Highlights U.S. Infrastructure Crisis

May 16, 2017 6:32 pm

This article was published in the Sandy Springs Patch. View the original article here.

The recent water main break and sinkhole on Roswell Road highlights a major problem that localities across the country are facing due to a failure to substantially invest in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure.

Whether it’s structurally deficient bridges, dams and levees or inadequate roads, airports and pipes, America’s infrastructure is insufficient, and our leaders in Washington can no longer forsake responsibility when it comes to much-needed maintenance and improvements.

Like the residents of Sandy Springs, every day Americans are affected because officials deferred necessary upgrades until a bursting pipe becomes an emergency as opposed to routine maintenance. When water mains break, school buses are forced to reroute, limiting students’ time spent in the classroom. Restaurants are unable to serve customers as water availability is affected. Businesses lose sales as detours divert traffic from main roads. Lost revenue and time wasted in traffic will never be recovered.

Our infrastructure is the lifeblood of our economy. It impacts our quality of life, the competitiveness of our businesses, and the safety and security of our country. All this while spurring economic growth and creating well-paying jobs.

I urge Sen. Johnny Isakson, Sen. David Perdue and the next representative for Georgia’s sixth congressional district to work in a bipartisan manner with the Georgia congressional delegation, their colleagues and the Trump administration to immediately address the nation’s infrastructure crisis. Further delay is unacceptable to Georgians and the rest of the country.

 

Brian P. McGuire

President & CEO

Associated Equipment Distributors

AED’s McGuire: Perkins Reauthorization Essential to Equipment Industry Growth

May 4, 2017 9:03 pm

Brian P. McGuire, president and CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors (AED), issued the following statement in conjunction with the introduction of the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Career & Technical Education Act.

“AED congratulates the House Education & Workforce Committee’s leadership for introducing the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act. By prioritizing technical education, Congress can help better prepare workers for well-paying careers, ensure that U.S. companies are able to seize new business opportunities and make the United States more competitive in the global economy. Businesses, schools and government officials must collectively commit to tackling the technical education crisis at all levels, and the legislation is a great step forward to enabling that commitment.

“The skilled worker shortage is costing construction equipment dealers approximately $2.4 billion per year in lost revenue and economic activity. By reflecting current workforce needs, empowering state and local entities, and emphasizing work-based learning opportunities, the legislation is a great step to address the industry’s skilled worker deficiency, allowing AED members to better serve customers while growing their businesses and the overall economy. We look forward to working with the House and Senate to get this important legislation to the president’s desk in the near future.”

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