CEO Comments

Big Things in Store for 2016!

In the first months of 2016, NASBP is busy planning for the celebration of its 75th Anniversary, which will be the hallmark of the 2017 NASBP Annual Meeting & Expo in Boca Raton, Florida. Such an organizational milestone necessitates focus and substantial advance planning to ensure a celebration fitting for such an illustrious occasion. Many even might be tempted to look past the present year in anticipation of that celebration, but don’t be tempted to do so, as 2016 portends events, efforts, and accomplishments of great significance for the Association.  

What is planned for 2016? Plenty! Having accomplished our #1 federal legislative goal in 2015 through the passage of legislation addressing the assets of individual sureties writing on federal construction contracts, NASBP is vigorously pursuing its new #1 federal legislative goal—the adoption of explicit mandatory bonding requirements in federal water infrastructure legislation, particularly as a condition of federal financing of public-private partnership projects. Bonding requirements in such contexts are not always clear, so our legislative priority is to bring clarity in that respect whenever federal loans or grants are being used. Larry LeClair, NASBP’s Director of Government Relations, has been quite busy already this year, visiting with all the key congressional offices in both the U.S. House and Senate to acquaint them with the need to ensure that bonds are in place so quality companies perform the needed construction work, taxpayer dollars are preserved through third-party guarantees, and downstream subcontractors and suppliers can rely on the presence of payment bond protections. Larry’s efforts on the Hill have a particular resonance given the sorry state of the Nation’s water infrastructure and his cry of “Remember Flint.” Larry gives further insight into the efforts made to date in an article in this issue of the Pipeline.

The theme of public-private infrastructure projects will play a key role in the program and advocacy efforts surrounding the 2016 NASBP Federal Legislative Fly-in, planned for June 7 and 8, at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill, and the 2016 Federal Construction Contracting Seminar, which will take place at the same location on June 9. Please place these events on your calendar and consider making the trip to DC. By doing good on Capitol Hill, you will do good for your industry and for your career!

The 2016 NASBP Annual Meeting & Expo already is shaping up to top prior meetings in attendance and in programming. The Annual Meeting is in one of the most spectacular resort venues in the U.S., the Broadmoor, in Colorado Springs, which, in recent years, has received $112 million in property upgrades, including new rooms, new facilities, and new restaurants. Be sure to join your friends, colleagues, and top leaders throughout the surety industry in the only meeting of its kind! 

We are coming off a very successful Winter Surety School in Houston and are looking forward to our summer offering of the Surety School to be held in Kansas City at the Marriott Kansas City at Country Club Plaza during the first week of August. We also are offering sales skills training through the 2016 Sales Workshop, from September 21-22, at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort and Spa in Austin, Texas. And, we are looking to add an online continuing education course on construction joint venture arrangements before the end of 2016 to our current offerings on ethics and on contract and on commercial surety fundamentals.

Our NASBP Regional Meeting locations are slated for Austin, Texas (Regions 4, 5, 6 & 7, September 22-24), Nashville, Tennessee (Regions 8, 9, 10 & 11, October 2-4), and Napa, California (Regions 1, 2 & 3, October 6-8), and our Midyear Meeting, November 10-11, will be in the lovely, historic port city of Annapolis, Maryland. 

With all of the above, I think you have the picture. If you value advocacy, education, networking, and community, then 2016 promises much for you!