President Obama’s proposed $3.8-trillion budget for fiscal year 2013 recommends cuts for most major federal construction programs, reflecting continued heavy pressure to hold down overall discretionary spending. But the budget proposal also calls for a sharp boost for surface transportation and a reduction in airport grants for big airports.Obama’s budget request, sent to Congress on Feb. 13, is just the beginning of what surely will be a long, tough, partisan fight over next year’s spending. The final numbers won’t become clear until the fall, or perhaps later.One key construction item in the president’s budget is a proposed six-year, $476-billion surface
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.