With the House’s passage of a $1.2-trillion continuing resolution funding the federal government through Sept. 30, industry groups are nervous that environmental and infrastructure programs could be scaled back sharply. The House bill, approved on Feb. 19, cuts appropriations by $61 billion compared with 2010 enacted levels. But the cuts aren’t set in stone. The continuing resolution (CR) now moves to the Senate, where Democratic leaders have slammed the House plan. Industry officials note, however, that Senate Democrats may be forced to make some concessions to avert a government shutdown. The current CR expires on March 4. Senate Majority Leader
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.