Government Affairs News


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June Capitol Hill Update: Congressional Response to COVID-19, Agenda Highlights and More

Featured topics in this most recent Legislative Update include recent developments surrounding the Congressional response to COVID-19, with a strong focus on legislation that has been passed, and the current Congressional agenda leading up to and beyond the August recess.

Chapter Leadership May 06 2021

Speak Out on Behalf of Our Industry: Engage with Your Elected Officials

SMACNA National’s Capitol Hill Office staff work tirelessly to advance the interests of our members and represent our industry in Congress.

Webinar May 06 2021

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Pension Plans and the American Rescue Plan

The recently passed American Recovery Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) included several provisions that could impact multiemployer plans. This webinar for SMACNA members, chapter executives, and trustees outlined key provisions in the ARPA that are applicable to our industry.

SMACNews Apr 30 2021

Capitol Hill Update: SMACNA Endorses Major School Construction and Retrofit Legislation

School Construction, COVID Tax Credits and Recently Endorsed Bills SMACNA has expressed support for S. 96, “The Reopen and Rebuild America’s Schools Act” sponsored by Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) and 27 cosponsors.

Member Update Mar 25 2021

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ARPA Includes Pension Reforms, COBRA Subsidies

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) was signed into law March 11, 2021 (P.L. 117 - 2). This article summarizes an eight-page Multi-Elert from the National Coordinating Committee on Multiemployer Plans (NCCMP) on the Emergency Pension Plan Relief Act of 2021 (EPPRA) provisions included in ARP.

Member Update Mar 18 2021

What the ARPA Means for SMACNA Contractors

While nationwide coverage of the ARPA has focused on political differences, the important issues related to vaccines, and on unemployment and stimulus checks, SMACNA members should also be aware that there are extensive provisions in the law that will affect SMACNA contractors.

SMACNews Feb 28 2021

Capitol Hill Update: Budget Reconciliation, COVID Relief, Pension Reform Among Items Before Congress

The Senate is concentrating on Biden Administration Cabinet appointments, and the Senate and House both remain focused on producing a COVID-19 relief package that meet budget and reconciliation rules to avoid a Senate filibuster. 

SMACNews Dec 01 2020

Capitol Hill Update: Composite Plans and Pension Relief Negotiations Falter

Bipartisan agreement on pension relief, along with authorization of Composite Plans, could not be reached in time to be included in the final bills of this session of Congress.

SMACNews Oct 31 2020

Capitol Hill Update: Pensions in Legislative Limbo

Pension relief and Composite Plans were in previous House-passed bills and Composites were included in the Grassley-Alexander pension proposal, so there had been high expectations pensions and Composite Plans would be included in a negotiated stimulus package.


Capitol Hill Update: Pensions Relief, COVID Deal Stalls, GA Outdoors Act, School Retrofits

The Senate and the House left Washington without agreement on a new COVID relief bill. The stalemate is not good news for SMACNA pension efforts.

SMACNews Jun 10 2020

PPP Flexibility Act Becomes Law; SBA/Treasury Clarify New Rules Under the Act/Loan Program Extended

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Flexibility Act, Public Law Number 116–142, with changes to PPP strongly supported by SMACNA, was signed into law by the president on June 5, 2020. The legislation provides more time for PPP borrowers to use their loan funds, qualify for loan forgiveness and gain additional relief from the program’s original requirements.

SMACNews Mar 31 2020

Capitol Hill Update: Pension Reform Amid COVID-19 Legislative Frenzy

The COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting health and economic devastation has certainly diverted a lot of attention from the pension issue, but key members of Congress and staff have continued the negotiation process.

SMACNews Feb 28 2020

The 2020 Focus on Pensions

While the 2018 Joint Select Committee on Solvency of Multiemployer Pension Plans could not overcome political divisions to solve the pension crisis, it did launch the 2019 effort for a bipartisan solution and comprehensive reform.

SMACNews Dec 20 2019

The Battle for Multiemployer Pension Reform: SMACNA Engaged as Serious Negotiations Begin

It is important to make sure that multiemployer reform proposals are set up to protect contributing employers, the industry, and the multiemployer system.

SMACNews Oct 25 2019

Capitol Hill Update: SMACNA Endorsed Energy Efficiency, CHP/WHP Credits; 179D Gaining Momentum

SMACNA has joined with energy efficiency allies and advanced a letter to both the House and Senate tax committee leaders.

SMACNews Aug 20 2019

Capitol Hill Update: Multiemployer Plan Pensions

As previously reported in a SMACNA Alert, on July 24 the House of Representatives passed H.R. 397 the so-called Butch Lewis Act that would establish a gov-ernment funded Pension Rehabilitation Trust Fund to provide loans to failing plans that many experts think may never be repaid.

SMACNews Jun 20 2019

Capitol Hill Update: SMACNA Supports House Bill to Repeal "Cadillac Tax" on Health Care Benefits

SMACNA supports the bipartisan legislation, “The Middle Class Health Benefits Tax Repeal Act of 2019,” H.R. 748, which was recently referred to the House by the House Ways and Means Committee.

SMACNews May 20 2019

Capitol Hill Update - A SMACNA Priority: Contract Change Order Reform Introduced in Congress

Due to its popularity with contractors nationwide, federal change order reform has recently been reintroduced in Congress. It has bipartisan support and a promising future of passage.

SMACNews Apr 29 2019

SMACNA Endorses Bipartisan Bill to Speed Hospitality Retrofits

SMACNA has enthusiastically expressed support for the bipartisan bill, Restoring Investments in Improvements Act of 2019 (S. 803), which would amend last year’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act to boost renovations and retrofits for restaurants and retailers.