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ATSSA co-leads effort asking Yellen for relief on supply chain challenges

19 associations engaged in infrastructure work seek ARPA funds to help with soaring prices

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ATSSA is one of 19 organizations asking Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to clarify that American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds can be used to help subcontractors and suppliers that are struggling due to supply chain issues brought on by the pandemic.

“At this critical time, as Congress has passed the historic Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) that will provide impactful infrastructure investment to the nation, we request relief for government agencies and businesses who have and continue to face unprecedented pandemic-induced supply chain delays and shortages that may undercut the anticipated benefits of the IIJA investment,” according to the letter sent to Yellen on Monday.

ATSSA, the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and the American Road &Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) led the effort that was joined by 15 other organizations.

Smith: ATSSA members’ diligence made a difference with IIJA

ATSSA Town Hall breaks down details of the infrastructure bill

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ATSSA Vice President of Engagement Nate Smith told ATSSA members today that their diligence over the past 15 to 20 years played a significant role in the funding coming to roadway safety under the new infrastructure law.

“You all should pat yourselves on the back,” Smith said during an ATSSA Town Hall to discuss the impact of the bipartisan infrastructure bill that was signed into law on Monday. “This is a job well done.”

The $1.2 trillion measure is a historic investment in transportation funding and includes a 5-year, $304 billion investment in roads and bridges, Smith said. He noted that’s a 34% increase over current spending for the Highway Trust Fund (HTF) and translates into $16.8 billion over five years for the Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP).

Smith said he’s confident the HSIP funding will mean additional opportunities for ATSSA members.

AASHTO and FHWA release answers to help implement MASH

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The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) on Monday announced the release of  responses to three questions regarding testing of roadway safety hardware under the Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH), 2016.

The guidance is available online and includes all new and prior questions and answers dating to May 2018.

A joint AASHTO/FHWA technical working group developed the latest responses, which are created to help manufacturers, crash test laboratories and transportation agencies apply the guidelines to roadway safety devices.

US Court of Appeals sets oral argument date for FCC case

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The U.S. Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments on Jan. 25 in the case of multiple transportation organizations to block a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) order to redistribute a portion of the safety spectrum.

The Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America), the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and the Amateur Radio Emergency Data Network (AREDN) appealed the FCC’s Nov. 18, 2020 order to reallocate a portion of the 5.9 GHz spectrum band to unlicensed uses including WiFi.

The FCC voted unanimously to reallocate more than half of the safety band. The new rules adopted by the FCC make the lower 45 megahertz (MHz) of the spectrum available for unlicensed uses and require Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) licensees to stop using that portion of the spectrum within a year.

ATSSA CEO thanks House members for their leadership in infrastructure vote

Tetschner commends all in Congress for acting to make America’s roads safer

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ATSSA President & CEO Stacy Tetschner issued the following statement today after President Joe Biden signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) into law.

“With the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) now signed into law, it is important to recognize the members of Congress that stepped up for our country and did the job we asked them to do.

“The IIJA is a bipartisan success story, which is something that has become a rare sight on Capitol Hill. However, despite this legislation having support on both sides of the aisle, other members of Congress have taken the opportunity to attack those that stood up and voted to pass this legislation. I specifically want to acknowledge 13 Republican members of the House of Representatives."

ATSSA Town Hall on infrastructure package set for Nov. 18

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ATSSA will host a Town Hall next Thursday to discuss the infrastructure package recently approved by both houses of Congress.

The Town Hall will be led by ATSSA Vice President of Engagement Nate Smith and answer the question: What does it mean for ATSSA members?

The Senate approved the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) in August and the House of Representatives approved it late Friday. President Joe Biden is expected to sign the legislation soon.

Worker Safety Webinar Series launches with discussion of roadway industry

Roadway worker protection focus spurs idea for Worker Safety Webinar series

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ATSSA kicked off its Worker Safety Webinar Series today with a session by Alex Kelly, founder and CEO of SALT + Company.

Calling her presentation “Road Safety 101,” Kelly discussed big picture issues related to the transportation industry and encouraged company owners to veer outside their lane—though not literally—to explore alternate avenues for partnerships.

Today’s session was the first of five Worker Safety Webinars and sponsored by the ATSSA Training Department and the new Roadway Safety Protection Council. The next four webinars will take place in 2022.

ATSSA President releases statement regarding the House’s failure to pass infrastructure bill

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ATSSA President & CEO Stacy Tetschner released a statement today regarding the failure of the House of Representatives to pass the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA).

“The failure of the House of Representatives to do their jobs and pass the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is disappointing and dangerous. Unfortunately, having to release a statement like this is becoming the norm instead of the exception,” he said.

“Congress, specifically the House progressives and House Republican leadership, have decided to use this important historical investment in our nation’s roads, bridges and safety as political leverage. They are playing politics with every road user’s life, instead of protecting them. I would hope that they use the month of November to come to their senses and pass this bipartisan legislation and do the job they were voted into office to carry out.”

Congress nears passage of bipartisan infrastructure package, extends current authorization

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With the current surface transportation authorization set to expire over the weekend, Congress passed a short-term extension of the FAST Act, the current authorization, that will run until Dec. 3.

Earlier this afternoon the House appeared close to voting on the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package, but Democrats were unable to come to an agreement on a vote for a separate $1.75 trillion reconciliation package, the framework of which was released today.

AASHTO council unanimously supports resolution to convert MASH into a performance spec

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AASHTO’s Council on Highways and Streets voted Wednesday to support a resolution to convert the Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH) to a specification.

The vote took place during the Council’s meeting as part of AASHTO’s annual meeting in San Diego.

AASHTO maintains MASH and commissioned the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) to conduct a scoping study on the idea of converting MASH 2016 to a specification. The study was completed this year, according to a presentation by Maine Department of Transportation Chief Engineer Joyce Taylor, who serves as vice chair of AASHTO’s Committee on Design. The association also held two webinars in June with state and industry officials to address opportunities and challenges the conversion would bring.

The move to convert MASH into a performance specification is aimed at “developing a more consistent testing of roadside hardware,” according to the Council on Highways and Streets resolution.

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