What Is the Old Dominion Highway Contractors Association?
The Old Dominion Highway Contractors Association was charted in 1997 to protect, promote, and advance the interests of small, midsize, and large highway contractors and their suppliers in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
For more information about joining the ODHCA, please CLICK HERE.
How Is the ODHCA Different to Other Highway Construction Groups?
The Association was founded because of growing concerns among highway contractors that the industry was not doing enough to protect itself in Richmond, both with legislators and government agencies. Those who banded together as charter members did so in the belief there were issues central to the industry’s well-being that were being ignored.
At the time of the ODHCA’s founding, the livelihoods of many contractors were under threat from the ramifications of the Public-Private Transportation Act, including the issuing of state maintenance contracts without using competitive sealed bidding.
The initial meetings of the association focused on developing a proactive approach to lobbying and building long-term relationships with state legislators and government agencies. Today, the ODHCA serves as the voice of small, midsize, and large highway contractors and suppliers throughout Virginia.
With the combination of an aggressive lobbying program and the creation of an active political action committee, the Association quickly has developed strong working relationships with legislators of all political persuasions and with multiple levels of management within state agencies.
What Are Some of the Association’s Successes?
In just five years, the Association has played a major role in helping set the state’s highway construction agenda. The ODHCA’s lobbying program has led to a broad range of legislative and regulatory successes, including:
- In May 2002, at a special ceremony attended by ODHCA officers and directors, Governor Mark Warner
signed legislation introduced by the Association that mandates the use of competitive bidding for state
maintenance services and some construction services. The bill’s broad bipartisan support was seen
as a clear indication of the Association’s growing influence.
- The ODHCA has helped secure additional funding for transportation projects throughout the Commonwealth,
including the $3.1 billion spending bill passed by the 2000 General Assembly. The Association gave
critical support for an amendment providing a dedicated, reliable, and long-term source of additional
funding through the use of insurance premium assessment funds.
- In 1998, the Association successfully negotiated with the Transportation Secretary and the VDOT
Commissioner for a four-year moratorium on unsolicited proposals for highway construction work. In
subsequent legislative sessions, Association lobbyists derailed numerous attempts to mandate VDOT’s
use of asset management.
- Also in 1998, the ODHCA sponsored successful legislation requiring VDOT to use English units of measurement in the design, advertisement, planning, and construction of highway projects.
Who Handles Lobbying Activities for the Association?
The ODHCA retains the Richmond-based Vectre Corporation, headed by veteran political operative Ben Dendy. As Virginia's largest independent lobbying firm, Vectre provides professional assistance to manage the Association’s public sector relationships and to devise the right strategic approaches to its public sector agendas and challenges.
Vectre’s professional lobbyists have already established strong relationships with key elected and appointed officials at all levels of government through decades of governmental relations and community work. In 2002, Virginia Business named Vectre one of the Commonwealth’s top 10 lobbyists, based on a survey of state legislators.
In addition, the ODHCA’s board of directors and membership make time to meet with legislators and state agencies (particularly the Virginia Department of Transportation) on a regular basis. And, during the annual session of the Virginia General Assembly, Association members make frequent trips to Richmond to assist with lobbying efforts.
Does the Association Have a Political Action Committee?
Yes. The Old Dominion Highway PAC is the state’s single leading contributor among highway construction and related industry groups. The Association’s PAC committee meets on a regular basis to determine the distribution of PAC funds. The committee focuses on those candidates—regardless of political party—who have a positive influence on issues central to the Association.
Who Currently Sits on the Association’s Board of Directors?
The ODHCA Officers and Directors represent many of the state’s leading highway construction companies and associated firms. Follow the link above for more details.
Where Are the Association’s Offices?
The ODHCA’s headquarters are in Charlottesville, Virginia. Association staff can be reached by telephone at the number below.
Old Dominion Highway Contractors Association
250 West Main Street
Charlottesville, VA 22902
Fax (434) 979-2439