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November 9, 2012News for contractors and the construction industry

  Top Story 
  • Fitch: Storm protection could be costly for transportation agencies
    Transportation agencies along the East Coast may be looking at "substantial" costs to better protect themselves against extreme weather and flooding, according to Fitch Ratings. "These costs could be substantial and will most likely be self-funded through unplanned debt issuance as grant funding could be hard to come by," said Mike McDermott, managing director of Fitch's global infrastructure group. Reuters (11/9) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Infrastructure & Project Focus 
  • Visually tracking stimulus projects
    This piece showcases some projects in California paid for with funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Projects include wetlands restoration in Huntington Beach, solar panel installation on Alcatraz Island, an affordable housing project in San Diego and wind, solar and other clean energy projects. "On the individual level, the void between paying your taxes and the where, why and how these funds are spent is quite large," said Chad Ress, who photographed some of these projects to fill that void. Inhabitat (11/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • Minn. DOT preps site for St. Croix River bridge project
    Crews are starting groundwork on the St. Croix River bridge between Minnesota and Wisconsin. Materials are being brought in as site prep work begins. Large mounds of surcharge will be monitored through the winter to assess the ground's ability to bear weight. The estimated cost of the project is between $580 million and $676 million. Minnesota Public Radio/The Cities (11/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Economic Update 
  • CBO: "Fiscal cliff" will trigger recession if left unaddressed
    The Congressional Budget Office has issued a stark warning that failure to avert the "fiscal cliff" will send the U.S. into a recession and drive joblessness up to 9.1% by the end of 2013. The nonpartisan CBO said the combined effects of higher taxes and reduced federal spending would cause the economy to contract by 0.5% next year and warned that the U.S. can't afford to allow its debt burden to continue growing. CNNMoney (11/8), Politico (Washington, D.C.) (11/8), Forbes (11/8) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Innovation & Green Building 
  • Contractors go paperless to save on costs, promote sustainability
    New technology has enabled many contractors to implement a paperless way to deal with construction operations and transactions, yielding cost savings. For instance, Catamount Constructors started using Textura's Construction Payment Management system for paperless billing. The technology will let Catamount Constructors offer service and conduct business in a "progressive, environmentally responsible manner," said Mike Plungis, the company's chief financial officer. Constructech (free registration) (11/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Policy Watch 
  • Policy proposals to help strengthen U.S. cities
    This article discusses eight federal urban policy ideas that the authors say President Barack Obama should consider in order to jump start the U.S. economy and strengthen cities. These include funding high-speed rail, creating an infrastructure bank and funding measures for coastal protection and sea-level rise. The Atlantic Cities (11/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Rep. Shuster makes move for House T&I chairmanship
    Rep. Bill Shuster, R-Pa., wants to be the next chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. He's currently chairman of the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials. "Transportation is essential to our economy and our future," Shuster said. "I am focused on continuing to work together to promote competitiveness and economic growth, reform programs, focus our resources where they are needed most, and better manage our Federal assets." National Journal/Influence Alley (11/8), ProgressiveRailroading.com (11/8) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Association News 
  • AGC members, save on ConsensusDocs
    ConsensusDocs are the only standard contracts written by a coalition of 37 leading construction industry organizations, including AGC. AGC members receive a 20% discount on all ConsensusDocs products. Simply use code AGC100 when prompted during the checkout process at www.ConsensusDOCS.org. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Introducing AGC’s Lean Construction 101
    This new online course provides a foundation of the key concepts and terms used in Lean Construction, providing you with the background necessary to further your education. Following this one-hour online course, you will be able to discuss benefits of Lean Construction, identify implementation opportunities, explain the origins, and more. Learn more and register. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Editor's Note 
  • Check updates about the construction sector all day via Twitter
    Don't settle for just one dose of AGC SmartBrief each day. Follow @SB_AEC on Twitter and get great construction stories all day long. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  SmartQuote 
A man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can’t read them."
--Mark Twain,
American writer


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