The Associated Equipment Distributors (AED) declared March 5 Equipment Industry Action Day to keep the reauthorization process moving forward and urged its members to flood Congressional offices with e-mails and calls from around the country.
An important procedural vote in the Senate on March 6 will determine whether and when there will be a final vote on the Senate’s reauthorization package.
In the House, GOP leaders are still working to develop a highway and transit bill that can win the 218 votes needed to pass, according to AED All the while, the clock is running down on the most recent short-term program extension, which expires on March 31.
According to AED, here is what’s at stake in the highway debate:
- $40 billion per year in investment critical to the nation’s economic future
- Nearly 1.5 million jobs
- And $2.4 billion in annual equipment sales, rental, and product support
AED says that’s why enacting a new, multi-year bill to restore certainty to federal infrastructure programs is its top priority.
The organization asked its members to do the following:
- Contact your senators to tell them to vote “yes” on cloture on the highway bill on Tuesday, and contact your representatives to tell them to keep the reauthorization process moving. Click here: http://capwiz.com/aedaction/issues/alert/?alertid=61054481
- To contact the Hill by phone, call the Congressional switchboard number at 202-224-3121. If you don’t know who your congressman and senators are, just give your zip code and the operator will take care of the rest. When you’re connected to the congressional office, ask to speak to the transportation legislative assistant or the legislative director. You don’t have to be an expert on the political nuances or policy details; you just have to be able to explain why getting a highway bill is so important for your company, employees, and customers.
- Forward this this grassroots efforts to others within your company, as well as to your other industry colleagues and anyone else you think needs to be involved. Tell them that you’ve done your part and urge them to help make a difference.
- Have your IT people set up a computer in the break room and encourage your employees to contact the Hill to be part of this industry effort.
- Sign up for a Twitter account and follow @AEDGovAffairs to stay up to date with the latest info about what’s happening on the reauthorization front. Search Twitter for #EquipmentIndustryActionDay for updates about this grassroots push.
- Register for AED’s 2012 Fly-In (April 25 & 26) and come to Washington, D.C. to get personally involved. By then we hope to be in final conference negotiations on the highway bill, but wherever the process stands, your presence will make a difference. Register online at http://www.aednet.org/fly-in/index.cfm
For questions, feedback, or political intelligence to share, contact Christian Klein or Daniel Fisher in AED’s Government Affairs Office at 703.739.9513.