Ohio general contractor Brian Burgett today told members of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure to recommend to the full House economic stimulus activities that would have an immediate positive impact on economic activity.
general contractorBrian Burgetttoday told
members of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Transportation and
Infrastructure to recommend to the full House economic stimulus activities that
would have an immediate positive impact on economic activity.
infusion of federal infrastructure funding would have a direct stimulus effect
by putting more contractors and their employees back to work,” said Burgett,
president and chief executive officer of the Kokosing Construction Co.,
Fredericktown, Ohio. “We have excess capacity at Kokosing and throughout the
construction industry. Federal investments will create jobs in the Midwest and throughout
the country. Additional public infrastructure projects will allow our industry
to maintain our workforce and necessitate hiring more workers. It will allow us
to purchase equipment and preserve manufacturing jobs.”
testified on behalf of the Associated General Contractors of America, which
strongly supports increased investment for America’s transportation, federal
and water infrastructure and other public works programs.
and local budgets have declined significantly and hampered the ability of those
governments to borrow short term, delaying or eliminating various
infrastructure improvement projects, he noted. With fewer projects to bid on
and increased materials prices, contractors and their suppliers are forced to
reduce their work force.
employs approximately 3,000 workers; the consequence of this decline in
construction activity is the anticipated reduction of our workforce by 15 to 20
percent in the coming year,” said Burgett. “That translates to 450-600 good,
skilled and safe workers who will lose their jobs because of these bad market
has been more than a five percent decrease in heavy and civil engineering
construction employment over the past 16 months, he added, which equates to
more than 52,000 construction employees now out of work.
explained that, under current conditions, companies will be forced to trim
plans for expansion or investment in equipment, leading to a broader negative
impact on the economy.
year we typically replace 10 percent of our equipment fleet and, in a growing
market, we would also purchase additional equipment,” he told the committee.
“The cost of this investment over the past few years has averaged $35 million
per year. We have already canceled some planned purchases for next year and are
putting many others on hold until we see what funding is going to be available
for new work.”
complete copy of Burgett’s remarks and prepared testimony are available online