CED

July 2015

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>> AED FLY-IN SCOTT MCPHERSON O n June 2-4, AED members from across the United States and Canada descended on Capitol Hill urging action on the industry's policy priorities, including restor- ing long-term certainty to the federal highway program. e annual Washington Fly-In delega- tion, led by AED Chairman Don Shilling, president & CEO of General Equipment & Supplies, and AED President & CEO Brian McGuire, comprised a diverse group of distributors and manufacturers, including AED Executive Committee, Advocacy Action Group (AAG) and Board of Directors members. Attendees participated in dozens of high-level meet- ings over a three-day period. e Fly-In commenced with a special briefing for AAG and Executive Commit- tee members by Rep. Sam Graves (R-Mo.), chairman of the House Highways & Transit Subcommittee. Rep. Graves discussed his desire to enact a five-or- six year highway bill as soon as possible. With the current surface transportation authorization law (MAP-21) expiring at the end of July and the Highway Trust Fund expected to reach insolvency around the same time, it's likely lawmakers will need to cra another short-term solution to allow Congress to identify new funding for a multiyear bill. Unsurprisingly, considerable disagree- ment remains over potential solutions. Proposals include increasing the federal gas tax (AED and the broader business community's preferred option), transfer- ring funds from the general treasury, taxing $2 trillion in corporate earnings overseas ("repatriation") and other budget gimmicks (or a combination of these options). Aer meeting with Rep. Graves, AED Executive Committee members joined Board Member Ken Taylor, Ohio CAT's president & CEO, at a reception for Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio). House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) was also present and expressed confidence that the House will pass a highway bill sometime this year. Meanwhile, other attendees enjoyed an evening at one of Washington's newest and most popular landmarks, the Newseum, as part of the National Association of Manufacturers Wash- ington Summit reception. e following morn- ing, Government Affairs Chairman Mark Romer, president & CEO of James River Equipment, welcomed attendees and AED's Vice President of Government Affairs Christian A. Klein briefed participants on the industry's legislative priorities. Following the briefing, a delegation met with Federal Highway Administration Acting Administrator Gregory Nadeau at Department of Transportation head- quarters, while others went to Capitol Hill to watch AED Chairman Don Shilling testify before the House Small Business Committee about the impact of the federal highway program on smaller companies. Nadeau and Shilling had similar messages for their audiences — the need for a bipar- tisan, long-term solution to the highway funding crisis and increased investment to complete a backlog of important projects. Aer reconvening for lunch, Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.), a former Volvo auto- mobile dealer and current Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee finance chairman, laid out a pro-business Democrat's views on key issues, including infrastructure investment and immigra- tion reform. Following lunch, AED's Washington team moderated panel discussions on manufacturer policy priorities, highway reauthorization and tax reform and workforce development. Rep. Jim Renacci (R-Ohio) joined the highway reauthorization panel to outline the Bridge to Sustainable Infrastructure Act, his bill that includes automatic user fee increases to meet funding levels if Congress can't find a better solution. e workforce panel featured Rep. Bradley AED Leaders Push for Highway Bill Action Fellow equipment distributors gather to voice their opinions and encourage better government practices at the 2015 Washington Fly-In. 42 | www.cedmag.com | Construction Equipment Distribution | July 2015 The Fly-In's final day kicked off with the annual AED Political Action Committee breakfast at the Capitol Hill Club. Pictured from left to right: Paul Liesem, Ken Taylor, Rep. Jim Renacci (R-Ohio), and Dale Leppo

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