For policy nerds like me, the last couple of months have been unlike any other time in recent history – and maybe ever. It is important to remember that the U.S. Congress is an institution purposefully designed to be slow and deliberative. I understand, of course, that on the front lines it may have seemed like an eternity, but the fact that Congress could gain bipartisan agreement on the CARES Act, the largest and most sweeping piece of legislation in American history, is pretty remarkable. We have also seen the strength of governorships around the country, as state governments navigate the challenge of keeping their citizens safe while maintaining a functional society.

There have been roadblocks. For as large as the CARES Act price tag was, it’s still not enough. The Paycheck Protection Program – a landmark economic initiative that offers forgivable loans to companies to keep people on their payroll despite a downturn – was spent out in its first week, and Congress was pressed immediately by the business community to replenish the fund. This is a testament to both the urgency of the situation and the effectiveness of the initiative.

More still needs to be done. Leaders of both parties have signaled a strong interest in a large, comprehensive infrastructure package to address America’s ailing built environment. It may be unfortunate that it took an international crisis to spur such legislation, but nevertheless it provides an important engagement opportunity for the composites industry. Times like these show why we need strong, reliable, low-maintenance infrastructure to keep the country functional. The composites industry is uniquely positioned to be a part of that revitalization.

Regular Composites Manufacturing readers will know about ACMA’s top policy objectives in this area, so I won’t elaborate here. Instead, I’d like to ask what more needs to be done for your company, for our industry and for the country? To make an outsized impact, to change the way America thinks about building for our future, we need to be unified and ready to engage. Our elected leaders need to hear from you, so I hope you’ll join ACMA in this effort.

When you look back on this period in your company’s history, we hope you’ll feel that ACMA was there for you when you needed us most. That’s certainly our objective. If there’s more we can do to hit the mark, now is the time to let us know.