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Infrastructure Week, Day Four

AEMlogo squareMay 16, 2019 – The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) and its member companies led the charge during a very busy week of infrastructure advocacy in Washington, D.C. On Tuesday morning, AEM President Dennis Slater moderated a panel as part of the 2019 American Road & Transportation Builder Association (ARTBA) Federal Issues Program. The discussion focused on the industry’s infrastructure priorities and featured ARTBA President and CEO Dave Bauer, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (ASHTO) Executive Director Jim Tymon, American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) President and CEO Linda Bauer Darr, and American Public Transportation Association (APTA) President and CEO Paul Skoutelas.

The panelists opined on everything from the critical role that infrastructure plays in the lives of Americans and its impact on the economy and society to the long-term solvency of the Highway Trust Fund and various infrastructure funding options. “It’s important to talk about new technology and new solutions. It isn’t the same old infrastructure conversation anymore,” said Slater.

Across town on Capitol Hill, Trimble President and CEO and AEM CE Sector Board Chair Steve Berglund joined members of the Highway Materials Group (HMG) for an AEM-led press conference calling on Congress to consider bipartisan infrastructure legislation this year. Representatives Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) and Rodney Davis (R-Ill.), who are long-time champions for infrastructure in Congress, also participated. “The equipment manufacturing industry supports 1.3 million jobs in the United States, and our infrastructure network is essential to ensuring that we can continue to support these jobs. We stand together, committed to identifying a bipartisan path forward in modernizing our infrastructure system and call on others to join us,” said Berglund.

Tuesday morning, Berglund joined other leaders from the Transportation Construction Coalition (TCC) for a meeting with U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). Sen. Schumer highlighted the importance of a comprehensive infrastructure package and the need for leadership from both sides of the aisle. AEM staff continued to lead the discussion on infrastructure during a meeting between stakeholders and the White House later that day.

It was a busy and productive week in Washington for the equipment manufacturing industry. AEM will continue to lead the charge on the need for infrastructure investment as talks between congressional Democrats and the White House on a $2 trillion funding package inch forward.