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Onvia Forecasts Huge Wave Of Stimulus Funding To Reach Infrastructure Contractors In 2010

SEATTLE, Feb. 23 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Analysts of Onvia, Inc. (Nasdaq: ONVI) say 2010 will be the year of maximum stimulus impact as funds that were obligated in 2009 will finally be awarded to contractors who will begin work in 2010. This, coupled with the investments covered by the pending Jobs for Main Street Act, will help fund projects from bridge construction to light rail, and Amtrak fleet modernization to fuel efficient vehicle purchases.  Onvia is the leader in business-to-government solutions and the creator of Recovery.org, a private sector initiative to give businesses transparency into recovery project spending.

"Despite all of the talk about the stimulus working, our research shows most of the funds have not left Washington, although they will in 2010," said Mike Pickett, CEO of Onvia.  "This year we are tracking 23,500 new projects in the pipeline, and there is $76 billion in stimulus funding that will reach contractors on these projects this year, creating 480,000 jobs in the construction industry.  Indirect jobs lift the total to 900,000 in 2010."

"We also expect competition for these contracts to be fierce as more businesses seek to capitalize on the irresistibly large market created by government spending.  It will remain a buyers' market as more companies follow the money and competition keeps a lid on costs. Welcome to the 'Next Economy' - one in which government and businesses operate more closely," said Pickett.

Onvia collaborated with REMI, the recognized authority on economic models, to produce The Next Economy: 2010 Government Market Outlook.  Top line findings regarding infrastructure projects include:

  • $76 billion across 23,500 fully or partially recovery-funded infrastructure projects are in the pipeline now and expected to begin in 2010.  Recovery dollars are funding projects in conjunction with traditional matching funds, making the total spend even larger.
  • Onvia forecasts the creation or retention of 900,000 direct and indirect jobs from ARRA contract spending in 2010 (vs. 360,000 in 2009).  The Southeast region is expected to produce the most jobs, with the Great Lakes regions setting the pace for average salaries.  
  • Throughout 2009, Onvia analysts found that infrastructure projects came in below estimated costs, driven by stiff competition and falling material prices.  Some of the savings served to expand the scope of recovery projects.
  • The highway construction market is expected to grow 8% in 2010 as only two states had obligated all of their transportation stimulus funds by the end of 2009.  With the pending Jobs for Main Street Act, an increase to double-digit growth is not out of the question.
  • Unemployment has lowered ridership rates nationwide, lowering funding for transit systems. At the start of 2010, less than half of the approximately $7 billion for transit were under contract, signaling more spending this year. With an additional $8.4 billion in the pending Jobs for Main Street legislation, the prospect is strong for even more contract awards in this category.

"Government spending is at an all-time high and we do not see that changing in the foreseeable future," said Pickett. "We are witnessing the 'Next Economy' in which government more actively participates in business interests through regulation, direct ownership, contracting requirements, and other means.  For business, the debate isn't about the size of government, but rather how to engage in and influence this vast and growing market."

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