Volume: 4, Issue: 32 - 08/21/2015
By Bruce Jervis
Arbitration is a matter of contract. The parties agree to submit disputes to binding, non-judicial resolution. But arbitration is also a legislative and judicial creature. Federal and state arbitration statutes authorize the procedure and call for judicial confirmation of arbitration awards, giving them the same weight as court judgments. Read more.
The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) recently held its annual IT conference in Chicago on July 30 and 31, and from it we learned about quite a few useful products and developments. Based on the excellent report coverage by construction technology expert Rob McKinney and Sean Spicer, digital marketing director for Notevault, here’s an overview of the topics covered, ranging from 3D printing and drones, to BIM, virtual reality and apps for smartphones and tablets. Read more.
Volume: 4, Issue: 31 - 08/14/2015
By Bruce Jervis
Prevailing wage statutes go back to the Great Depression era. The federal model, of course, is the Davis-Bacon Act. These laws, at the federal, state and local levels, create a mechanism for establishing minimum wage rates and fringe benefits for the various trade and labor categories on a particular public works project.
Prevailing wage laws have long been criticized as a tool of the labor unions. Too often, say critics, the “prevailing” wages are the same as those negotiated in collective bargaining agreements. This nullifies any competitive advantage of non-union contractors and inflates labor costs on public projects. Read more.
Last week we introduced the importance of the daily report on a construction project. Primarily, the daily report becomes part of the official record of the project documenting what happens on the job from day-to-day and serves as a reference for settling of claims and disputes. In today's article, we look at deficiencies commonly found on a daily report, the application of electronic aids in the daily report process, and, some actual examples of reports used by several public agencies. Read more.
Volume: 4, Issue: 30 - 08/07/2015
By Bruce Jervis
Contractor recovery for the cumulative impact of multiple delays has always been controversial. It seems logical that repeated delays affect productivity and increase costs. But it is difficult to quantify. And, of course, there are questions of causation or responsibility for the various delays.
Adding to the complexity of cumulative impact claims are contract clauses requiring prompt written notice of changed or delayed work, along with quantification of increased costs. Cumulative impact costs cannot be calculated until the end of the project. Contract clauses mandating quantification shortly after the claim “event” effectively bar recovery for cumulative impact. Read more.
The daily report, a document summarizing job conditions and work performed each day, is the single most important document concerning a construction project. It not only serves as a record of work, the daily report helps the author think about the day's work and aids in planning for the next day. It also serves as a communications device between the field and the office. Finally, it provides supporting data for settling changes orders, claims and disputes. If kept in a complete, detailed and trustworthy fashion, for the purpose of running a business and not for the purpose of litigation, it will become evidence, sometimes without testimony (more on this below). Read more.