The construction industry entered 2022 as part of the broad national economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Last January, we had a cautiously optimistic outlook — tempered by record high material costs, labor shortages, and continuing supply chain disruptions.
As we enter the year’s final quarter, not much has changed. All these issues remain serious challenges for our industry — at the precise time when almost everybody predicts a growing demand for our services on the near horizon.
I’m proud to report the active engagement of the Good Roads community in bringing people together to address the construction workforce crisis in New Hampshire. An initiative led by Larry Major, Pike Industries, the Workforce Development Committee has had a busy and constructive summer (see the Workforce Development Committee Update).
A critical first step in addressing almost any broad, multi-faceted problem involves recognizing and embracing complexity. It’s a process where we need to listen more, be open to learning new things, become part of new communities, and find our allies — the people, agencies, and organizations who share our values and goals.
The Workforce Development Committee’s emerging role in guiding this crucial statewide discussion — as a facilitator and communicator — is an excellent example of the unique function we serve for our industry in New Hampshire. We know how to bring people together — for problem-solving, fun, and usually a little of both.
Speaking of fun, I know from personal experiences how helpful the Equipment Showcase Open — see the summer issue of New Hampshire Highways — is for networking with my colleagues while thoroughly enjoying myself at the same time! It doesn’t get better than that. I want to thank our members, sponsors, and everyone who participated in making this event one that people look forward to year after year.
A special thank you goes out to all those who participated in the raffles held throughout the tournament. Over $2,000 was raised for the New Hampshire Good Roads Construction Scholarship Fund. This Fund — supported by members in different ways throughout the year — enables us to provide financial help to several students every year and represents an essential aspect of our mission. Information about our scholarships can be found here, along with applications for 2023. In addition to the scholarship fund, over $1,500 was raised for the Good Roads Workforce Development initiative.
Are you ready for the Fall Social? Please plan to join us on November 5 in Portsmouth at the Sheraton Portsmouth Harborside Hotel. It’s always memorable and a great time to network with friends and colleagues! Additional information about the Fall Social, and registration details, are available at nhgoodroads.org or call Brenda at the NHGRA office at 603.224.1823.
An important election is coming on November 8, and I encourage everyone to get out and vote. Get to know the candidates. Find out where they stand on the transportation funding and infrastructure issues important to you, our industry, and the future of our communities.
Good roads and bridges are good for everyone!