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James Buchanan, our nation’s 15th president, spoke of his love for what he termed “the noise of democracy” – the voices of the people who consent to be governed speaking to those who govern. The noise of democracy has changed a bit since the Buchanan administration, but the sentiment stands the test of time: that making yourself heard before government is more than just a right. It’s an obligation.

That’s why this week, we are moving full speed ahead with our campaign to fix the 5-year R&D amortization mandate, launching a new advocacy campaign to enable our members to contact their representatives in Washington and share their stories on why this misguided and short-sighted policy must be repealed.

The cornerstone of this effort is a new television ad that will run on CNN, MSNBC, and FOX News nationally, and then concentrate among decision makers in Washington, DC. We are bringing the noise of democracy directly into the living rooms and offices of decision nmakers, making the case that R&D amortization is a punitive policy imposing an onerous burden on the innovators who drive our nation’s economy forward.

View the television ad:

YouTube video

Congress should be encouraging R&D to stimulate growth, create high-paying jobs, and unleash the full creative potential of America’s businesses. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) made some big promises on our behalf – that we would deliver the next generation of infrastructure, that we would improve and innovate – all under the tagline of “Investing in America.” As an industry, we’re all-in on that investment but, as I said before, our firms are being punished for their work under this R&D policy.

This campaign is about amplifying your voices on this issue, and making sure that lawmakers are listening. We are not backing down on this fight, but we need you to keep telling your stories to your representatives in Washington. Check out our new Engineer Innovation website, where you can directly link to your Members of Congress, view testimonials from our Member Firms, and see our TV ad.

Listen to this blog as an audio file:


Editor’s note: This blog post was originally delivered via email to ACEC members from Council President and CEO Linda Bauer Darr as part of her weekly email column.


Engineering Influence Podcast Ad

October 31, 2023



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