How the Infrastructure Act Can Help You Get a Government Contract

How the Infrastructure Act Can Help You Get a Government Contract

March 27, 2023

In November 2021, Congress passed a historic infrastructure bill to recover from losses during the COVID-19 pandemic and radically improve the nation’s roads, rails and access to critical community needs.

As the $1.2 trillion in funds flow throughout cities and communities everywhere, various funding opportunities arise for companies and contractors. The federal government will allocate state grants according to a formula assessing the population and need.

These government contracts would be monumental for any business, and there are key factors to know about federal requirements for obtaining one. With all the facts and careful consideration, your business could be well on its way to financial growth and become a historic contributor to upgrading our nation.

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act features a bipartisan deal to upgrade and repair crumbling infrastructure. This is truly a critical and historic moment, as infrastructure often takes a back seat in Congress’s dealings.

The act directly features advancement in these key areas:

  • Roads
  • Bridges
  • Railways
  • Waste management
  • Environmental justice
  • Green infrastructure
  • Access to clean water
  • Access to high-speed internet

Congress seeks to improve the quality of life for many Americans, optimize the efficiency of supply chains and create a sustainable economy.

Benefits and Opportunities

The White House projects 2 million jobs will be generated each year of the coming decade. These repairs and upgrades need contracting companies to tackle diverse areas of development. Additionally, the influx of funding opportunities means more contractors can compete and innovate.

Furthermore, government funding is essentially recession-proof. In a recession, the government would require more builds to spur the economy, while private-sector clients would cease or limit operations to save funds instead. Government backed-projects let you rest assured that funding opportunities are cemented in and competition will guide your industry’s trajectory upward.

Besides historic job growth, the act offers opportunities for environmental cleanup and aid to communities nationwide. Your contracting company can find new funding opportunities and personal peace knowing that your work contributes to a net improvement for the world.

Payments by federal agencies are also often sizable and delivered promptly. Government experience is vital for growing your business with federal contracts.

What funding opportunities can you expect to find with all these sectors included in the act? Knowing some key features will guide you to better decision-making and realistic company growth.

1. Roads, Rails and Bridges

Nearly every American relies on vehicles daily to work or shop for food. Roadways and bridges are heavily used, and it’s concerning that one in five miles of major roads is in poor condition.

Expect to find various grants for road repavement, installation of new guardrails, and reinforcement or construction of bridges in communities big and small.

Train transportation is also critical for a greener, more efficient future. Public transit cuts back on emissions and allows people to traverse the country at faster speeds. Railway upgrades also benefit supply chains, so your company could find jobs in communion with Amtrak or other train companies.

2. Water Infrastructure

Congress detonated $55 billion to expand clean water access. About 2 million Americans do not have clean drinking water, so the need is more present than ever, particularly in communities affected by lead service pipes and pollution from fracking.

Small contracting businesses may have the edge over larger companies as they might already work directly with the rural towns that need upgraded water infrastructure the most. The neediest areas will likely receive the most attention from federal agencies, and thus, more funding opportunities are up for grabs.

3. Supply Chain Improvements

The legislation also invests in waterways and ports to optimize supply chains. Jobs may include implementing low-carbon technologies and green infrastructure to reduce emissions. Long-ignored repair requests and routine maintenance also enter the queue of tasks so vehicles are safer and more resilient.

4. Green Energy and Cleanups

The infrastructure act offers the largest-ever investment in a clean energy grid for the United States. Companies large and small can expect to find jobs for constructing new transmission lines, building energy-efficient homes, and installing solar farms and wind turbines. Construction techniques are also going green, with more sustainable materials and designs optimized to reduce heating and cooling.

Environmental justice programs will also attempt to mitigate devastating pollution effects on communities. Various cleanup jobs for brownfield sites and oil and gas wells are in the works, as well as old mines. Ecological disasters often incapacitate rural communities the most, and small contracting companies have the ability and insider knowledge needed to clean up these areas.

How to Get These Government Contracts

Various funding opportunities are increasing nationwide, but how will the infrastructure act help you get these government contracts? Here’s how your company can find the best jobs that leave a lasting impact on communities far and wide.

1. Know the Facts and Your Limits

Before applying for any contracts, take a moment to assess your company’s resources and desired projects. You want to be confident that your team can deliver results, meet all requirements and not bite off more than it can chew. Working with the government means additional regulations and monitoring of proper business practices.

Outsourcing professionals to deal with the requirements within these contracts may be helpful. Many companies, especially smaller ones, do not have the staffing power to harness the complexities of accounting, cybersecurity and HR details.

Additionally, because taxpayer dollars are on the line, the government’s eye is that much sharper. If your company considers independent contractors like electricians, carpenters, painters, plumbers and more, then be wary of misclassification. Some states have unique liability and worker status laws, and the Department of Labor wants to ensure all employees are correctly classified and protected under federal standards.

Ensure your team is accounted for and classified correctly to avoid fines. These penalties may include $50 for each unfiled W2 and 3% of the worker’s wages.

2. Reach Out and Register

Once you’ve analyzed and acquired the right team for any contracting needs, ensure your company is registered and credible. Government work hinges upon success with previous jobs and connections, so check your digital footprint and history. In some cases, smaller businesses can benefit from networking with other companies or garnering positive reviews from various sources.

Next, your company can register on the System for Award Management (SAM) database to directly communicate with procurement officers. The General Services Administration (GSA) also manages a list of companies approved for bidding. You should also register for a free DUNS number, your unique identifier for government-funded business projects. These action items allow you to move full steam ahead into selecting the right project.

3. Assessing Options, Agencies and Programs

Finding agencies and programs for your contracts is the next step. The act funds over 20 agencies, and your company can research the history and missions behind each one. Some departments also dedicate specific webpages to updating funding distribution and details. Frequent touchpoints with these sites ensure you find the best contract opportunities on time.

You can also dig into local funding. Spending is allocated to states by population and need, which will trickle down to smaller communities. Small businesses have opportunities to support local projects and directly improve these areas. Those who wish to work on bridges, roads, public transit and sea ports will likely see a large influx of grant money directed here.

Improving Our Infrastructure

This historic act will allow the U.S. to rapidly transform into a more equitable and efficient nation. As funding is distributed to roads and ports, you and your contracting company can find various contracts to improve the country one project at a time. Your team can dive into these contracts with confidence and success if it has all the tools and facts.

This article is a guest post from Rose Morrison.

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