FCA International’s legislative team is focused on a busy agenda during Congress’ upcoming lame duck session. Here is a quick overview of the issues your international association is influencing on your behalf.
While the results of the 2020 November election are still being finalized, there are several legislative opportunities that could benefit signatory contractors during the “Lame Duck” session. FCA is working with Congressional Representatives and their staffs to ensure they understand signatory contractors’ interests and needs. We anticipate a busy legislative agenda addressing key issues such as additional COVID-19 funding legislation, FY 21 appropriation funding bills, the National Defense Authorization Bill (NDAB) and the conference report on the Water Resources Development Act.
Multiemployer Pension Reform
FCA and our allied coalitions are working with Congress to address multiemployer pension reform. We anticipate FY 21 appropriation funding bills to include funding for multiemployer pensions and composite plan design.
Change Order Legislation
Regarding the NDAB, FCA is working to ensure the “Small Business Payment for Performance Act (H.R. 2344)” remains as an amendment on the final bill. H.R. 2344 would compel agencies to be accountable for changed work they order by funding their own construction projects in a timely manner, instead of diverting that financial burden to small contractors.
Prohibiting Reverse Auctions for Federal Contracts
FCA is working on ensuring the final passage of the “Construction Procurement Improvement Act,” which would prohibit the use of reverse auctions for awarding federal contracts for construction and design services. This legislation unanimously passed the Senate on Dec. 19, 2019 and it currently awaits its final consideration in the House Oversight and Reform Committee.
DOL Proposed Independent Contractor Rule
FCA will continue monitoring the Department of Labor’s response to our comments regarding their proposed rule that would make it easier for workers to be classified as independent contractors. In our comments, we told the DOL that the proposed rule fails to address many of the difficulties faced by businesses when implementing responsible practices in the real world. FCA recommended that Congress be afforded the opportunity to debate and amend the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to include a clearer definition of “independent contractor” rather than proceed with this proposed rule. We also recommended that the DOL avoid the interjection of subjective beliefs of any kind, including the “real benefits of independent contractor status,” in favor of the more objective assessments such as addressing the perils of worker misclassification in the construction industry.