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AGC States Reasons Bailout Bill Necessary

The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), supported the bipartisan Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (EESA). The legislative proposal, on which the House, Senate and Administration worked collaboratively, is expected to restore liquidity, stability and confidence in the financial markets and restore credit to finance worthy construction projects, according to an AGC news release.

“The EESA will spare the $1 trillion construction industry from postponing important projects, deferring equipment purchases and laying off employees,” said Stephen E. Sandherr, chief executive officer of AGC. “AGC members and chapters across the country are urging Congress to take this decisive action. From a construction industry point of view, this legislation is the best strategy to ensure growth and job creation,” said Sandherr on September 29, while the legislation was being considered.

The bill was rejected by the House of Representatives on September 29. A revised version was passed by the Senate on October 1, the House accepted it on October 3 and the President signed it several hours later, creating the $700 billion Troubled Assets Relief Program to be used to purchase failing bank assets.

Many small businesses in the construction industry say they have been impacted by the credit crunch, and some directly blame the frozen credit markets for closing their doors, continued the AGC statement. When credit is frozen, hometown banks back away from new loans. It doesn’t matter how many future orders a small business receives if it can’t get a loan to continue to operate, the statement concluded.

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