Associated Builders and Contractors members are lobbying Congress to stimulate construction, not with stimulus funds but by pushing financial regulators and banks to restore lending to private-sector projects and firms. To push jobs, the open-shop construction group calls for unfreezing project lending for more access to capital, examining federal guidelines on write-downs and curtailing financial institutions from “unnecessarily restricting, reducing or calling in lines of credit” to contractors and suppliers. “Freeing up credit is how to create a real economy,” said James W. Elmer, president of the Spokane, Wash.-based construction firm that bears his name and ABC’s chairman. Also speaking
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.