AED News

Brian McGuire: Lanesboro Dam Highlights U.S. Infrastructure Crisis

April 20, 2017 7:23 pm

The Winona Daily New in Winona, MN published this article from Brian P. McGuire, president & CEO Associated Equipment Distributors.

The Winona Daily News’ recent article documenting the 150-year-old Lanesboro dam’s deteriorating condition (Legislators look at leaky Lanesboro Dam, April 14) 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 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 Lanesboro, all Americans are affected because officials deferred necessary upgrades, putting lives and the local economy at risk. Each day parents leave for work or drop off their children at school worrying that the dam’s imminent failure could shatter the community.

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. Amy Klobuchar, Sen. Al Franken and Rep. Tim Walz to work in a bipartisan manner with the Minnesota congressional delegation, their colleagues and the Trump administration to immediately address the nation’s infrastructure crisis. Further delay is unacceptable to Minnesotans and the rest of the country.

AED’s McGuire: Keystone XL Permit Approval a Win for Construction Equipment Industry

March 24, 2017 3:32 pm

Brian P. McGuire, president and CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors, issued the following statement after the Trump administration granted a permit authorizing the Keystone XL pipeline’s construction across the U.S. border. AED has been a leader in Washington advocating for Keystone approval and other energy policies that will spur economic growth and job creation.

“AED commends the Trump administration for delivering on its promise to approve construction of the Keystone XL pipeline across the U.S.-Canada border.  While it’s indefensible his predecessor denied the necessary permit, we’re pleased that President Trump recognizes the project will produce a substantial number of jobs and significant economic activity with minimal environmental impact.

“The construction equipment industry hopes the Keystone XL pipeline project is just the beginning. The United States has trillions of dollars of infrastructure needs.  Whether it’s the pipelines required to move energy resources to market, structurally deficient bridges, dams and levees or inadequate roads, airports and water systems, America’s infrastructure is insufficient and our leaders in Washington can no longer forsake responsibility when it comes to required maintenance, upgrades and investments.”

Brennan to Congress: Mining Sector is Necessary for Equipment Industry Growth

March 22, 2017 7:10 pm

WASHINGTON – A strong mining industry is integral to economic growth, job creation and the United States’ ability to rebuild its crumbling infrastructure, an Associated Equipment Distributors (AED) executive committee member told the House Energy & Mineral Resources Subcommittee today.

Michael Brennan, Bramco, Inc.’s president & COO and senior vice president of AED’s Board of Directors, detailed the benefits of a robust mining sector for his company and the broader construction equipment industry, the importance of domestically-sourced mined materials and aggregates to rebuild our nation’s infrastructure and the need for government to refrain from overregulation.

Highlighting Louisville-based Bramco’s experience with the Kentucky coal industry’s downturn, Brennan warned the committee that without a commonsense regulatory policy, all mining companies are vulnerable, including those extracting other important minerals and elements used in countless contexts, such as infrastructure projects. Furthermore, the economic damage goes beyond energy and aggregate companies as real lives are impacted outside those sectors. Everyone from construction equipment distributors to restaurant employees to manufacturers struggle when there’s a significant downturn in an important industry.

“When the mining sector suffers, the pain is felt from Arizona to Illinois to Iowa, as the negative implications extend to the communities where manufacturers have locations, as well as the many other suppliers and vendors related to these companies throughout the United States,” Brennan told lawmakers. “Mining isn’t just an eastern Kentucky issue-it’s a national matter.”

Brennan cited overzealous inspectors from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration as making it particularly difficult for mining companies to run an efficient and productive business.  “An unfortunate result of the coal mining downturn in my region is that MSHA inspectors are now spending more time overregulating the crushed stone producers who produce materials that are vital to the rebuilding of America’s infrastructure,” Brennan said. “While the mining sector has contracted since 2008, the MSHA workforce has remained constant, forcing inspectors to look beyond coal for the focus of their often-overzealous oversight.”

Brennan concluded that to rebuild America we must have domestically produced raw materials provided by a vigorous mining industry.  “If the federal government abstains from overregulation, the mining sector will create more jobs, drive our economy, improve the financial health of our country, rebuild our nation’s deteriorating infrastructure and help the United States become energy independent.”

Brennan’s written testimony is available at http://bit.ly/2nthCIr.

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AED is an international trade association representing companies involved in the distribution, rental, and support of equipment used in construction, mining, energy, forestry, power generation, agriculture, and industrial applications.  More information is available at www.aednet.org.

Lake Oroville, ARTBA Study Underscore Public Safety Crisis

February 15, 2017 8:59 pm

Brian P. McGuire, president and CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors, issued the following statement regarding the situation around Northern California’s Lake Oroville and a new study by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association that found nearly 56,000 bridges across the country are structurally deficient. For his full statement on the Lake Oroville crisis visit http://bit.ly/2lLbCKq.

“The new ARTBA analysis underscores the need for sustained and substantial investment in our nation’s infrastructure. Whether it’s a decaying dam, a crumbling bridge or an inadequate electrical grid, Americans are depending on an outmoded infrastructure network, placing public safety and welfare at risk. The time for leadership in Washington is long-overdue. The quality of life for all Americans hangs in the balance as partisanship overshadows good policy and Congress delays on making decisions to invest in our country’s long-term future.”

Lake Oroville Crisis Underscores Need for Leadership in Washington

February 13, 2017 3:00 pm

Brian P. McGuire, president and CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors, issued the following statement regarding the crisis developing around Northern California’s Lake Oroville amid severe flooding and the failure of an emergency spillway to adequately control increased water levels.

“On behalf of AED, our thoughts and prayers are with the citizens and first responders of Northern California as they deal with the terrible situation around Lake Oroville.  For those that don’t live in the areas impacted, the crisis should serve as warning to all of us.  Years of underinvestment in our nation’s infrastructure have forced all American’s to rely upon structurally deficient dams, spillways, levees, bridges, and tunnels, putting at risk public safety and welfare.”

“We know our nation’s infrastructure continues to crumble, yet our leaders in Washington put off tough decisions to the detriment of the American people.  When will Congress worry less about their reelections and more about the lives that are at risk due to decades of woefully inadequate infrastructure funding?  Today it’s a dam in California, tomorrow it could be a bridge in South Carolina or a tunnel in New York.  Make no mistake about it—failure to lead in Washington is leading to an infrastructure system on life support and putting people in harm’s way.”

AED Alert: EPW Committee Dives into Infrastructure Policy

February 6, 2017 2:18 pm

On Feb. 8, the Senate Environment & Public Works (EPW) Committee will hold a hearing to study the state of United States infrastructure.

The panel’s examination comes on the heels of a Feb. 1 House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee hearing on the same topic, featuring testimony from Mary V. Andringa, AED member Vermeer Corporation’s Chairman of the Board, and the leaders of FedEx Corporation, Cargill, BMW North America, and the AFL-CIO.

Witnesses on Feb. 8 will include a mix of state and local officials.

While congressional leaders and the Trump administration are prioritizing rebuilding our nation’s crumbling infrastructure, action speaks louder than words.  The industry must engage to ensure all the infrastructure chatter turns into a robust, long-term investment bill.  The AED/EDA Washington Fly-In on April 4-6, in Washington, D.C. is the opportunity to join your equipment industry colleagues to urge action on the issues important to your company.

More information about the hearing, including testimony, additional background information, and link to live webcast, will be posted here by the EPW Committee as it becomes available.

AED Joined Industry Partners to Urge Highway Investment

February 1, 2017 5:03 pm

A collection of organizations – including the AFL-CIO, AASHTO, APTA, ARTBA, NAM and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce – plan to send a letter to Trump today urging his administration to prioritize making the Highway Trust Fund solvent as part of his infrastructure package.

“It is critical that your infrastructure plan not only encourages greater participation from the private sector in infrastructure projects and reduces needless red tape, but also provides real revenue for the Highway Trust Fund that will help the users and beneficiaries of America’s transportation and freight network,” the groups say in their letter. “Private financing, while important and needed, cannot replace the role of public funding and federal leadership.”

AED Member Vermeer Corp. Testifies Before T&I Committee

January 31, 2017 8:59 pm

On Feb. 1, the House Transportation & Infrastructure (T&I) Committee will hold a hearing to examine the challenges facing our nation’s infrastructure and solutions to address the situation.

Witnesses include Vermeer Corporation’s Chair of the Board Mary V. Andringa. Vermeer Corporation is an AED member organization. Andringa will testify about the importance of a modern transportation infrastructure on the economy and the need for a long-term, robust funding mechanism. In addition to Andringa, the leaders of FedEx Corporation, Cargill, BMW North America, and the AFL-CIO will also participate.

The Trump administration cites rebuilding our nation’s crumbling infrastructure a top priority. However, to make increased, long-term investment a priority, Congress must act. And Congress will only act if you, the voter, engage. Infrastructure investment, tax, workforce development, energy, and regulatory policy will be the focus of the AED/EDA Washington Fly-In on April 4-6, in Washington, D.C. Register now and help make the case for the policy issues important for your company and the industry.

More information about the hearing, including testimony, additional background information, and a link to the live webcast, will be posted here by the T&I Committee as it becomes available.

AED’s McGuire: Chao Confirmation Puts Us Closer to Infrastructure Solution

January 31, 2017 6:32 pm

Brian P. McGuire, president and CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors, issued the following statement following the Senate’s confirmation of Elaine Chao to be U.S. Secretary of Transportation. 

“AED congratulates Elaine Chao on her confirmation to serve as President Trump’s Transportation Secretary.  Unfortunately, Secretary Chao is inheriting an untenable situation—a neglected transportation infrastructure and a Highway Trust Fund that’s set for insolvency.  After years of underinvestment, Secretary’s Chao’s leadership is needed more than ever to implement President Trump’s bold infrastructure vision.”

“The construction equipment industry is ready to rebuild the country.  Our leaders can’t sit by and watch our nation’s infrastructure continue to crumble, our international competitiveness suffer, and economic growth sputter, as the federal government continues to put off tough decisions for the next generation.  I’m confident that with Secretary Chao at the helm of the Department of Transportation, we’re one step closer to a bold, innovative plan to rebuild America.”

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AED is an international trade association representing companies involved in the distribution, rental, and support of equipment used in construction, mining, energy, forestry, power generation, agriculture, and industrial applications.  More information is available at www.aednet.org.

 

A New Chapter for AED Advocacy

January 30, 2017 3:48 pm

AED Announces The Next Chapter of the Association’s Government Affairs Program

As the next step in the evolution for AED’s government affairs program, Daniel Fisher, who currently resides as senior director of government affairs for AED, will soon take on the leadership role as vice president of government affairs for the association.

Fisher, will become an employee of AED effective Jan 30. As of that date, Obadal, Filler, MacLeod & Klein (OFM&K) will cease to represent AED.

Prior to joining AED’s leadership team, Fisher served as senior managing associate at OFM&K, where he provided client advocacy services, public policy counsel, and strategic advice on legislative and regulatory matters. In this role, he also specialized in transportation (aviation, surface), tax, trade, energy, water infrastructure, workforce development, and other policy issues impacting construction equipment markets and business operations.

Fisher has significant Capitol Hill experience, including serving as a Senate Judiciary Committee counsel for Sen. Arlen Specter, where he was on the legal team that handled the confirmation of two U.S. Supreme Court Justices.

We thank Christian Klein and OFM&K for their dedicated and excellent service for so many years. We look forward to Daniel joining our AED team and building upon past successes as the association’s advocacy program continues to be the voice of the construction equipment industry in our nation’s capital.

Associated Equipment Distributors
Attn: Daniel Fisher
1201 15th St. NW, Suite 220
Washington, DC 20005

Read the full press release here.

Download Mr. Fisher’s headshot here.

Download Mr. Fisher’s bio here.

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