Construction Investment in Gov’t Funding Bill

What construction investment programs see, and more, in the $1.7 trillion, 4,155-page fiscal year 2023 federal government funding bill.

On December 20, Congress unveiled a $1.7 trillion, 4,155-page fiscal year 2023 federal government funding bill. AGC backed and won increases for several construction investment programs.

At the Department of Transportation (USDOT), the funding bill delivers on the funding levels promised in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. In addition, it includes over $3 billion in additional funding for roads and bridges through earmarks and a bridge formula program. The bill also includes an additional $550 million in airport improvement grants as well as additional funding opportunities through discretionary grants at USDOT.

On the direct federal construction side of the ledger, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Civil Works program is funded at a record-level of $8.33 billion. Highlights in funding accounts include:

  • Construction: The bill includes $1.809 billion, $588 million above the amount in the President’s budget request.
  • Mississippi River and Tributaries: The bill includes $370 million, an increase of $145 million above the budget request.
  • Operation and Maintenance: The bill includes $5.079 billion and utilizes the full offset of $2.318 billion for the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund. The bill includes $2.479 billion above the budget request for Corps projects, including dredging, repair, and operation of structures and other facilities.

AGC also successfully advocated to increase USACE’s reprograming authority for military construction projects. As the report language states, this modified reprogramming criteria that apply to military construction projects, as well as new housing construction projects and improvements, is $6 million or 25 percent of the funded amount, whichever is less.  The increased reprogramming authority will help USACE to proceed with construction contracts without disruption or delay often caused by USACE needing to go back to Congress for additional funding when projects go over budget, for which construction contractors bare the cost waiting to finish work. The USACE reprogramming authority was last updated in 2018 and had remained at $2 million or 25 percent of the funded amount, whichever is less. 

Other funding wins include:

  • Military Construction: The bill includes $19 billion for military construction projects. This amount funds more than 300 infrastructure projects at military bases and installations around the world.
  • Bureau of Reclamation: $1.954 billion
  • Water and Related Resources: The bill includes $1.787 billion, an increase of $517 million above the budget request. Funding in this account will continue construction of rural water projects, water supply and conservation projects, and water reliability and delivery measures
  • General Services Administration: Allows GSA to spend $10 billion out of the Federal Buildings Fund, an increase of $670 million compared to the FY22 enacted level.
  • Department of Veteran Affairs: Major Construction – $1.4 billion, a $163 million decrease below the FY22 enacted level.

AGC strongly supports increased investment in our nation’s infrastructure including, its military programs, water resources infrastructure, and veterans’ facilities. AGC will continue to advocate for infrastructure funding to address our nation’s aging infrastructure.

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