AED News

Mississippi deserves world class infrastructure

August 11, 2017 1:17 pm

This article was originally published in The Clarion-Ledger. To view the original article, click here.

Following the Kemp Bottom Road bridge collapse in Vicksburg, residents, businesses and local officials are now forced to clean up the mess because our leaders in Washington continue to forsake their responsibility to invest in the nation’s infrastructure in a long-term, sustainable manner.

A strong federal role in partnership with state and local entities is a necessary component to building and maintaining the United States’ infrastructure system. Every day there are numerous examples of structurally deficient bridges, dams and levees and inadequate roads, airports and pipes. Time is wasted in traffic or sitting on an overcrowded runway. Clean water is squandered and roads flooded as water mains break. Lives are put at risk due to crumbling bridges and dams.

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. Mississippians and the rest of the country deserve world-class infrastructure and further delay is unacceptable.

Brian P. McGuire

President & CEO

Associated Equipment Distributors

Schaumburg, IL

Key in on infrastructure

July 26, 2017 1:27 pm

This article was originally published in The Wichita Eagle. Find the original article here.

Following the major water main break in Emporia, residents, businesses and local officials are now forced to clean up the mess because our leaders in Washington continue to forsake their responsibility to invest in the nation’s infrastructure in a long-term, sustainable manner.

A strong federal role, in partnership with state and local entities, is a necessary component to building and maintaining the United States’ infrastructure system. Every day there are numerous examples of structurally deficient bridges, dams and levees, and inadequate roads, airports and pipes. Time is wasted in traffic or sitting on an overcrowded runway. Clean water is squandered and roads flooded as water mains break. Lives are put at risk due to crumbling bridges and dams.

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. Kansans and the rest of the country deserve world-class infrastructure and further delay is unacceptable.

JUDY WORRELL, WICHITA

AED Submits Tax Reform Comments to the Senate Finance Committee

July 19, 2017 1:52 pm

Dear AED Member:

On July 17, AED submitted comments to the Senate Finance Committee in response to its request for input on reforming the tax code. AED’s submission focuses on several key priorities and the association’s long-standing tax reform principles, including:

  • Ensuring tax reform benefits (including rate reductions) all business structures, not just C corporations;
  • Incentivizing capital investment by maintaining the deductibility of business interest and preserving Sec. 1031 of the tax code (relating to like-kind exchanges);
  • Clarifying that equipment dealers’ rental income isn’t considered passive and subject to the Affordable Care Act’s 3.8 percent investment income tax;
  • Rejecting efforts to repeal the “last in, first out” (LIFO) accounting method;
  • Repealing the federal estate tax; and
  • Identifying new revenue sources for the Highway Trust Fund.

“AED continues to engage members of the House and the Senate on both sides of the aisle to ensure that the construction equipment industry’s voice is heard as the tax reform process continues,” said AED President & CEO Brian P. McGuire. “AED urges Congress to seize on the once-in-a-generation opportunity to make sweeping changes that simplify and restore long-term certainty to the nation’s tax code while unleashing the entrepreneurial spirit of the nation’s small businesses. We look forward to working with Congress and the administration ensure AED members are no longer hindered by a complicated and burdensome tax code.”

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

DCA Runway Issue Underscores U.S. Infrastructure Crisis

July 13, 2017 1:58 pm

This article was originally published in the Greater Alexandria Patch. You can find the original article here.

Last month, on two separate occasions, the main runway at Reagan National Airport needed repairs during peak travel time. Outbound flights were delayed and inbound travelers were forced to divert to other area airports. The runway issues at DCA are indicative of the problem localities across the country are facing due to a failure to substantially invest in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure.

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.

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

I urge Congress to work together in a bipartisan manner with the Trump administration to immediately address the nation’s infrastructure crisis. Further delay is unacceptable to Washingtonians and the rest of the country.

 

Brian P. McGuire

President & CEO

Associated Equipment Distributors

Moraga Bridge, Road Situation Underscore U.S. Infrastructure Crisis

July 13, 2017 1:34 pm

This article was originally published in the Walnut Creek Patch. You can find the original article here.

The recent announcement that Moraga will be spending more than $3 million to repair the sinkhole on Rheem Boulevard and rebuild the Canyon Bridge highlights the problem 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.

If our leaders in Washington committed to a long-term, robustly-funded plan to rebuild and upgrade the nation’s roads and bridges, Moraga and other towns across the country would have infrastructure in place that can withstand heavy storms. Had the necessary investments been made in past, the problem likely would have already been resolved with less cost to the local government, the taxpayers and the residents who now must waste time stuck in traffic or being rerouted.

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. Dianne Feinstein, Sen. Kamala Harris and Rep. DeSaulnier 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

Associated Equipment Distributors

Maury River Dam Situation Underscores U.S. Infrastructure Crisis

July 13, 2017 1:32 pm

This article was originally published in the Roanoke Patch. You can find the original article here.

The Roanoke Times recent article documenting the Maury River dam’s poor condition (Lexington City Council votes to remove dam on Maury River (June 15)) highlights a major problem that localities across the country are facing due to a failure to adequately invest in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure.

Whether it’s structurally deficient dams, levees and bridges 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 Lexington, communities across the country are affected because necessary upgrades are deferred, putting lives and the local economy at risk. While the Lexington City Council was forced to make a tough decision that has divided the community, had Congress made necessary investments in our crumbling infrastructure, the condition of the Maury River dam might not be an issue at all.

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. Mark Warner, Sen. Tim Kaine and Rep. Bob Goodlatte to work in a bipartisan manner with the Virginia congressional delegation, their colleagues and the Trump administration to immediately address the nation’s infrastructure crisis. Further delay is unacceptable to Virginians and the rest of the country.

Brian P. McGuire

President & CEO

Associated Equipment Distributors

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.’”

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