HUB / PAC
Contractors can feel confident in the fact that the CAWV and its political action committee, HUB/PAC (Highway-Utility-Building Political Action Committee) are at the Capitol making sure that among all the chatter, the construction industry is heard.
Government regulations and reliance on state and federal funding levels are nothing new for this industry. HUB/PAC works to ensure candidates are elected which will give contractors a fair hearing on industry issues.
Of the numerous groups that are represented before the WV Legislature, some are totally aligned with our ideology, others are in partial agreement with our industry, but some are totally adverse to our position. HUB/PAC, which represents only the viewpoint of the state’s construction industry plays a major role in activities at the Capitol.
For many years, it was believed that it was “good business” to stay neutral in political issues. Just “hoping” that construction receives adequate funding levels is not enough. HUB/PAC, which began 30 years ago, works to ensure that construction is adequately funded by providing a unified voice to contractors’ issues at the state Capitol.
By working to ensure that candidates are elected to the legislature by making contributions to their campaigns, HUB/PAC makes it a little easier for them to run for office. Because of the support HUB/PAC receives from association members, the influence and impact that it has at the Capitol has grown over the past 30 years.
The committee was established in 1980 following the West Virginia Election Reform Law which included a provision allowing organizations and corporations to establish PACs to solicit contributions from stockholders, executives and administrative personnel and their families. When HUB/PAC was formed, it was one of the first PACs to organize in the state. It is now one of nearly 400 PACs which are contributing to candidates running for seats in the West Virginia House of Delegates and Senate.
In addition to an impressive election record, HUB/PAC touts a respective list of accomplishments that have shaped the construction industry and positioned it to weather economic storms. Accomplishments include:
- Passage of legislation to stabilize the Highway Trust Fund by raising the wholesale gas tax rate calculation floor and preventing a loss of $23 million, allowing the transfer of $27 million allotted to the WVDOH by the WV Legislature and eliminating the 2013 expiration date of the “temporary” 5 cent tax component that began in 1993 keeping it at a permanent 20.5 cents per gallon.
- S.B. 297, which passed during the 2008 regular session, allows the School Building Authority of West Virginia to use their pay-as-you-go lottery funds as debt service on nearly $200 million in bonds adding over $1 billion to the state’s economy. This effort stopped the boom-bust cycle of school construction by generating a predictable and regular construction program for the state’s schools.
- The Infrastructure & Jobs Development Council (IJDC) was created to establish a revolving loan fund for development of water, wastewater and economic development projects through the issuance of bonds. The IJDC is a clearinghouse for distribution of the money in the fund to water infrastructure projects statewide.
- Creation of the School Building Authority in 1989 to facilitate and provide state funds for the construction and maintenance of school facilities to meet the educational needs of the people of the state in an efficient and economical manner.
- Had integral influence over crane operator certification requirements, ensuring that regulations are workable for West Virginia’s contractors and do not impose undue burdens on the industry.
- Ensuring that environmental rules and regulations are balanced with the needs of the quarry industry throughout the years, including a rewrite of regulations and updates to various rules.
- Funding for higher education, regional jails and state parks have all been influenced by HUB/PAC along with rules pertaining to competitive bidding, Design-Build, Public Private Partnerships, Construction Management, Abandoned Mine Lands, State Purchasing rules and procedures, Workers’ Compensation, drug and alcohol testing and tax reform.
HUB/PAC is governed by a Board of Trustees who determine the political candidates, organizations, issues and activities the group will support or oppose in the upcoming elections. We look for candidates who are knowledgeable about the issues which influence businesses in West Virginia. Each candidate is reviewed carefully to determine who will receive HUB/PAC support.
For incumbent legislators running for re-election, past actions and voting records are reviewed. For candidates who challenge an incumbent legislator, or in races where there is no incumbent, support is based on other indicators. Our goal is to elect people we can contact when faced with legislation that will have either positive or negative impact on the industry. Today's political climate makes it imperative that we help elect candidates to the West Virginia Legislature whose overall philosophy reflects the understanding that investment in infrastructure is crucial to future economic development and jobs.
The PAC can contribute up to $1,000 per candidate per election cycle.
Members can contribute to HUB/PAC and make suggestions about candidates to support throughout the year. Every stockholder, executive and administrative personnel and their families can donate to the political action committee. The only restriction is that contributions must be made by personal check. No corporate checks can be accepted.
For more information on donating to HUB/PAC contact Mike Clowser at (304) 342-1166 or firstname.lastname@example.org