AdvocacyAEM’s Advocacy Team hosted state and federal officials and signed up thousands of new grassroots supporters at CONEXPO-CON/AGG to educate and engage them around the issues that are important to equipment manufacturers during a presidential election year.

“CONEXPO-CON/AGG is North America’s largest construction trade show and an invaluable opportunity for elected officials to get to know our industry and better understand how decisions made in Washington, D.C. and state capitals impact equipment manufacturers,” said Kip Eideberg, AEM’s senior vice president, government and industry relations. “This is a critically important election year for our industry and the future of manufacturing in America, and that is why we are calling it the ‘Manufacturing Election.’ CONEXPO-CON/AGG is a great way of highlighting the importance and contributions of the 2.8 million men and women who make America.”

With candidates running for public office at all levels of government this year, 2020 is an important year for the equipment manufacturing industry. That is why AEM launched the "2020 Manufacturing Express" bus tour, which was unveiled on Thursday, March 12, at CONEXPO-CON/AGG in Las Vegas, Nevada. The cross-country campaign-style bus tour will visit 70 manufacturing facilities and communities across 20 states and is designed to help make sure that elected officials and candidates understand and support the issues most critical to the continued growth and success of equipment manufacturers in America. With 100 guests in attendance for the unveil, and thousands more stopping by the two replicas parked at CONEXPO-CON/AGG, the initiative has already gained significant exposure within the industry.

Advocacy 2I Make America, AEM’s national grassroots campaign,also had a significant presence at CONEXPO-CON/AGG. I Make America staff educated attendees about the campaign’s efforts to engage and educate the industry’s 2.8 million men and women about the policy issues that impact equipment manufacturers. Once signed up, new supporters were entered for a chance to win hourly prizes, including Kobelco Bluetooth speakers and Hilti laser meters, and in a few weeks, one lucky winner will be selected for a new Bobcat UTV. In total, more than 12,000 new supporters signed up as a result of the campaign’s outreach efforts at CONEXPO-CON/AGG.

AEM partnered with TRIP, a national transportation research nonprofit, on a new interactive map and touchscreen at CONEXPO-CON/AGG’s award-winning Tech Experience. “Transportation by the Numbers” gave thousands of attendees the opportunity to learn about the health of their state’s transportation infrastructure. The map showcased data for all 50 states and gave participants insights into their state’s road and pavement conditions, vehicle operating costs (VOC), and traffic fatality rates, including the number of annual fatalities in each state. Visitors to the Tech Experience were encouraged to use the data from the exhibit to further educate lawmakers about the importance of long-term and sustainable funding for transportation infrastructure at the local, state and federal levels.

Advocacy 3 useAEM’s Advocacy Team hosted officials from several state departments of transportation, including Utah Department of Transportation’s Executive Director Carlos Braceras and Nevada Department of Transportation’s Director Kristina Swallow and Deputy Director Cole Mortenson. The officials were given a first-hand look at the equipment needed to rebuild and modernize our nation’s infrastructure and meet many of the men and women who help to build that equipment. “It's incredible to see the range of technology and equipment at CONEXPO-CON/AGG,” said Braceras. “In transportation, our mission is to improve quality of life, and a mission that big takes strong partnerships with our consultants, contractors, and vendors. All of them--all of us--rely on equipment and manufacturers to be able to do that important work.”

AEM’s Advocacy Team also took Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Director of the Directorate of Construction (DOC) Scott Ketcham on a tour of CONEXPO-CON/AGG.

During his walk around the 2.5 million square feet of exhibit space, Ketcham learned about the latest in construction equipment technology and how it relates to worker safety. Discussions focused on pending crane rule amendments, trench safety, dual rated equipment, and the updated voluntary standards for aerial work platforms.

Advocacy 4Finally, AEM’s Advocacy Team provided Canadian exhibitors, attendees and government officials with an overview of current federal and provincial regulatory and legislative issues impacting our industry’s growth in Canada.

AEM continues to work to increase its presence and advocacy capabilities in Ottawa and provincial capitals in order to support policies that are important to equipment manufacturers in Canada.

To learn more about AEM’s advocacy efforts, visit www.aem.org/advocacy.

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