By Hank Kita, STA Executive Director

As the COVID pandemic drags on toward its second anniversary, a weary New York City construction industry looks ahead to what I believe will be a prosperous and successful 2022. One can only hope COVID finally loosens its grip in the coming year, allowing New York City in general and our construction industry specifically the opportunity to return to some state of normalcy.

On the public sector market front, change is afoot almost everywhere you look. In Washington, the recently enacted federal infrastructure bill will hopefully allow a plethora of public projects to finally hit the planning stages, resulting in work for our subcontractor members a year or two down the road. On the State level, Governor Kathy Hochul is the “new sheriff in town,” hopefully considering reforms to the public procurement processes and providing a more receptive environment than her predecessor in listening to the concerns of the construction industry.

At City Hall, Mayor Eric Adams will likely bring in a new team, filling the Commissioner positions with individuals who will, hopefully, have a fresh outlook on working with, as opposed to against, the better interests of our construction industry. The current word is that one can expect to see new Commissioners in departments impacting the contractors such as the Department of Buildings, Department of Design and Construction, Department of Environmental Protection and Department of Transportation, to name a few.

Newly elected New York City Comptroller, Brad Landers, will hopefully bring a new attitude to his office that for too long has brought a punitive approach to the construction industry when processing payments to our members. STA is working with its partner trade associations to keep a close eye on what appears to be the most “progressive” City Council in recent memory, and will try to thwart the tendency of this body to overregulate the construction industry.

In short, STA will have the opportunity to work with and establish new relationships with the aforementioned federal, state and local segments of the public sector. We will look for your continued support and input for 2022 as we navigate the changes that will occur in the public agencies and elected positions.

Looking forward, and with fingers crossed, I wish you, your families, friends and colleagues a happy and safe holiday season and a prosperous and successful 2022!