Weak Job Growth Affirms Urgent Need for Infrastructure Investment

Specialty trade construction shrunk in May

Washington, DC – The Bureau of Labor Statistics today released the country’s employment data from May, which included jarring numbers for the specialty construction industry. Specialty trade construction contracted by 1,200 jobs, led by an unexpected reduction of 6,300 jobs in the nonresidential specialty construction industry.

“May is typically the start of the busy season for specialty construction,” said Jack Jacobson, spokesperson for the Construction Employers of America. “To see an overall loss of jobs in specialty construction when the industry should be running at full steam is incredibly concerning and is a clarion call for Congress and the President to act immediately to pass a robust large-scale infrastructure bill to put Americans back to work.”

In addition to the trillion dollar infrastructure bill, federal policymakers are also writing tax reform legislation that could boost the construction industry, if implemented correctly. CEA has urged Congress to include provisions to repatriate overseas earnings that would boost investment in domestic infrastructure and related construction projects. CEA is also advocating the legislation boost IRS enforcement tools to combat worker misclassification and provide businesses incentives for investing in new construction projects and repair of existing assets.

“The country cannot afford any further delays on infrastructure or tax reform legislation,” continued Jacobson. “While our elected officials dither, hardworking Americans are sitting on the sidelines, waiting for real action that will create jobs and spur economic growth.”

CEA’s seven employer associations include FCA International, International Council of Employers of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers, Mechanical Contractors Association of America, National Electrical Contractors Association, Sheet Metal & Air Conditioning Contractors National Association, Signatory Wall and Ceiling Contractors Alliance, and The Association of Union Constructors. Our impact on the American economy is significant. We represent over 15,000 employers and 1.4 million employees nationwide. More information about CEA and our issues can be found online at www.constructionemployersofamerica.com.

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