October 2, 2020 – Fairfax, VA – Two of the most important geospatial programs in the Federal government were extended for a full year by the Continuing Appropriations bill enacted this week.
Authorization of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which produces Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) and the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act or “FAST Act”, commonly known as the Highway bill, were both slated to expire on September 30, 2020. Both programs were reauthorized in H.R. 8337, a bill making continuing appropriations for fiscal year 2021, and for other purposes. This bill, to prevent a government shutdown upon the end of the government’s fiscal year on September 30, extends funding for the new fiscal year through December 11 and avoids any lapse in contractor tasking or services, or federal funding to Federal agencies or recipients of Federal funds at the state and local levels, such as state transportation agencies. The bill passed the U.S. House of Representatives last week, the U.S. Senate on Wednesday evening, and was signed into law by President Trump early Thursday morning.
The extension of the FAST Act was promoted by a broad coalition of organizations, including clients of John M. Palatiello & Associates, Inc. (JMP&A), the premiere association management and government relations firm in the geospatial and infrastructure related services fields. Among the groups urging the Congressional leadership to extend the highway law were JMP&A clients the National Society of Professional Surveyors, Subsurface Utility Engineering Association, United States Geospatial Executives Organization (U.S. GEO), and Geospatial Equipment and Technology Institute (GETI).
“NFIP and the Federal-Aid Highway Program are significant consumers of surveying, mapping, geospatial, and subsurface utility engineering data, services, and technology”, said John Palatiello, President of JMP&A. “While improvements and growth in both programs are needed, and we’d like to see long term legislation, extending them in the short term will help get our economy going, provide a reliable source of funding, help facilitate development and modernize our infrastructure. This bipartisan action by Congress and the President are critically important at this time. The efforts of our chief lobbyist, John “JB” Byrd, a Vice President of JMP&A, were a great contribution to this effort.”
John M. Palatiello & Associates, Inc. (www.jmpa.us) is a public affairs consulting firm based in the Washington, DC suburbs. JMP&A provides association management, strategic planning, public relations, government affairs, and management and marketing consulting services to private firms, associations and government agencies with an emphasis on the sectors of architecture and engineering; geospatial, surveying, mapping, and GIS; information technology; construction; transportation and infrastructure. JMP&A‘s team of professionals has more than 75 years of combined experience in association management and government affairs. JMP&A is a wholly owned subsidiary of Miller/Wenhold Capitol Strategies (mwcapitol.com), a diverse team of experienced experts at all levels of government, politics, grassroots, training, coalition building, association representation, and federal procurement. With over 85 years of experience among the team, MW provides clients with the knowledge and expertise they need to be effective in Washington. Reputation, Relationships, Results … That’s Miller/Wenhold™