Using Apprentices on Public Works Projects

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New Case Clarifies Use of Apprentices on Public Works: Use of Craft Labor Rather than Pipefitter Apprentices Is Appropriate On Water Projects When On-Site Journeymen Were Union Laborers

A group of pipefitter apprentices alleged lost wages and training and violation of Labor Code Section 1777.5 against a prime contractor who, as signatory to a collective bargaining agreement with a laborers union, hired apprentice laborers rather than apprentice pipefitters to perform process pipe work on dozens of water and sewage treatment systems in Northern California. The trial court found that the term “craft or trade” in section 1777.5 refers to the journeyman’s trade or occupation, not the work processes in which they engage on any given day. The First Appellate division of the California Court of Appeal agreed with the trial court. Although subdivision (b) provides that apprentices be employed only at the work of the craft or trade to which he or she is registered, the plain language of subdivisions (g) and (h) refers to employing apprentices in the same craft or trade as journeymen employed at the job site. The plaintiffs did not dispute that the on-site journeymen laborers were qualified to perform the process pipe work. Moreover, nothing in the DIR regulations limits a journeyman to performing work processes on which his apprenticeship program has been authorized to train. The Court saw no harm in labor apprentices receiving training in processes that were not expressly listed in the laborer apprenticeship standards. The Court reasoned that any other reading of the statute has the potential to place an unreasonable burden on contractors.

For more information about this topic please contact:

Barbara R. Gadbois, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

email: bgadbois@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

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Contractors Risking More Than What They Bargained For?

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A couple of years ago, I co-authored a featured article for The Construction Lawyer(the Journal of the ABA Forum on Construction Law, Vol. 32, Issue 4, Fall 2012) entitled Is the Construction Manager Holding Any of the Cards? (A Critical Look at Construction Management at-Risk and Where it is Headed) and co-presented the topic at the 2012 ABA Forum on Construction Law’s Annual Meeting in Las Vegas at the Bellagio Hotel with Tishman Construction Senior Vice-President and General Counsel, Judy Herman, and Assistant General Counsel at Kiewit, John Carpenter. In both the paper and presentation, we discussed the role of construction manager at-risk (CMAR) in the modern construction industry, and the differences between the role of a CMAR and that of a classic general contractor. We also discusses the evolving legal risks faced by CMARs, including the potential risk of intentionally (or unintentionally) assuming the design of a project.

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court is now reviewing a potentially seminal CMAR case, Coghlin Electrical Contractors, Inc. v. Gilbane Building Co. and Travelers & Surety Company of America, Docket No. SJC-11778.  The case will eventually mark one of the few appellate decisions (especially from a state supreme court) concerning a CMAR’s rights, duties and responsibilities on a private or public work of improvement.

Gilbane had entered into a public works contract for both preconstruction and construction services for the construction of a psychiatric facility. The public agency also entered into a separate agreement with the “Designer” of the project, Ellenzweig Associates, Inc. (“Ellenzweig”).  Gilbane’s involvement in the design of the project was limited to review of design documents prepared by Ellenzweig.  Interestingly, the contract specifically stated that in reviewing the design, Gilbane did not assume Ellenzweig’s responsibility for design.

Gilbane subcontracted with Coghlin Electrical Contractors, Inc. (“Coghlin”) to perform the electrical work on the project pursuant to the plans and specifications prepared by Ellenzweig. Coghlin submitted design related change order requests (“CORs”) to Gilbane who submitted them to the public agency. Coghlin sued Gilbane (who, in turn, asserted a third party (cross-complaint) against the public agency), seeking recovery for the CORs relying upon the public agency’s implied warranty of plans and specifications.

The trial court granted the public agency’s motion to dismiss Gilbane’s cross-complaint, specifically noting that the CMAR is project delivery method distinct from traditional design-bid-build and concluding that:

  • the public agency’s implied warranty of plans and specifications is “simply inapplicable” to the CMAR alternative project delivery method;
  • Gilbane assumed “additional duties and responsibilities for the project, including . . . an ongoing duty to ‘review the design documents for clarity, consistency, constructability, maintainability/ operability and coordination among the trades, coordination between drawings and specifications. . .’ ” due to its role as CMAR;
  • Gilbane assumed “additional financial exposure…in the event that something [went] wrong, including . . . a broad obligation to indemnify and defend the Owner from and against ‘all claims, damages, losses and expenses . . . arising out of or resulting from the performance of the Work[.]’ “;
  • Though the indemnity clause in contract documents did not extend to the liability of the Designer arising out of the preparation of the plans and specifications, that limitation did not limit Gilbane’s obligation to indemnify the public agency; and
  • even a change in the design of the walls and ceilings could not be a change in “scope” since the project, as initially planned, included wall and ceilings, thereby rendering those items within the original “scope” of the project.

Gilbane directly appealed the trial court’s order to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. Amicus briefs were filed by several interested parties, including the AIA, AGC of America and the American Council of Engineering.  If affirmed, contractors will rethink and/or certainly re-price CMAR opportunities (at least in Massachusetts) since they are likely to assume at least a significant portion of design liability for such a CMAR project even when the owner procures the design from an independent design professional.  Though oral argument was held exactly three months ago, the construction industry in Massachusetts (and around the country) anxiously awaits this important decision from the high court for the Commonwealth.

To review the court docket and case information, go to http://www.ma-appellatecourts.org/display_docket.php?dno=SJC-11778

For more information about this topic please contact:

Christopher E. Ng, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

email: cng@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

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Contractors: To Avoid License Suspension, Report Judgments to CSLB

Contractors Must Report All Judgments to Contractors State License Board in order to Avoid License Suspension

A new case, Pacific Caisson & Shoring, Inc. v. Bernards Bros., Inc. 2015 DJDAR 5486 was issued by the Court of Appeals, Second District on May 18, 2015, which held that a contractor, whose license was suspended for failing to notify the California Contractors State License Board (“CSLB”) of a judgment against it, was not entitled to recover for work under the substantial compliance exception found in Bus. & Prof. Code §7031(e).      While Pacific Caisson was performing a subcontract for Bernards Bros., the CSLB suspended Pacific Caisson’s license for 77 days.  The suspension was because the qualifier for Pacific Caisson was also the qualifier for another company called Gold Coast Drilling, Inc. (“Gold Coast”) and Gold Coast had an unsatisfied judgment against it for failing to pay union employee benefits.  The union notified the CSLB of the unsatisfied judgment and the CSLB suspended Gold Coast’s license and Pacific Caisson’s license (because both share the same qualifier, both licenses are suspended pursuant to Bus. and Prof. Code §7071.17(j)).

Since Gold Coast failed to notify the CSLB within ninety (90) days of the date of the judgment, the license was automatically suspended pursuant to §7071.17.  On this evidence, the trial court ruled that Pacific Caisson did not qualify for the substantial compliance exception because it had failed to demonstrate under the second prong of the exception that it “acted reasonably in good faith to maintain the proper license.”  The court reasoned that the RMO for both companies was responsible for ensuring full compliance with the laws concerning construction operations and Section 7071.17(b) obligated Gold Coast to report the unsatisfied stipulated judgment within 90 days.  Failing to notify the CSLB was found to be neither in good faith nor reasonable.

The Court found that Gold Coast was obligated to notify the CSLB as soon as the stipulated judgment was entered.  It relied on the old language of §7071.17 which stated that the CSLB required notification of “any entered and unsatisfied judgment within ninety days from the date of judgment.”  Thus, the court concluded that as soon as the stipulated judgment was entered, it was “unsatisfied” regardless of whether Gold Coast thereafter made installment payments.  Section 7071.17(b) has changed since in that it requires “all licensees shall notify the Registrar in writing of any unsatisfied final judgment imposed upon the licensee.  If the licensee fails to notify the Registrar in writing within ninety days, the license shall be automatically suspended on the date the Registrar is informed or is made aware of the unsatisfied final judgment.”  It is less clear in the new code section when the ninety days starts to run, but one has to assume that the time begins to run at the time of judgment.  Therefore, it is prudent to inform the CSLB of any unsatisfied judgment within ninety days of entry of judgment.

It has been argued that if the judgment is on appeal, then the judgment is not considered “final” for the purpose of §7071.17.  Although this issue was not presented to the court, it appears that an appeal does not change the requirement to report the judgment to the CSLB.   Note that under §7071.17, a licensee may post a bond on any unsatisfied judgment; bonds are also required on appeal to stay enforcement of judgments.

Here are the steps that a contractor should take to protect its license from being suspended after an entry of judgment:

  1.                 Inform the CSLB of any judgment within 90 days of entry (unless the judgment has been fully paid in that time period).
  2.              If the judgment will be appealed, post a bond with the CSLB to avoid license suspension.  You have ninety days from the date of notification to provide the bond.
  3.                If you have entered into a payment plan with the creditor, in lieu of filing the bond, you can provide the CSLB with an accord reached with the creditor that is notarized by both parties to avoid license suspension.  Make sure that any installment agreement includes provisions that creditor will agree to notarize this accord.

Failure to follow the steps outlined above will result automatic suspension of the license and will put all projects that are ongoing at the time of suspension at risk.

For more information about this topic please contact:

Marion T. Hack, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

email: mhack@gibbsgiden.com

For more from Marion T. Hack, Esq. visit http://www.gibbsgiden.com/_blog/Construction_and_Public_Contracts.

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel. For specific questions about any of the content discussed herein please contact the article attorney author or send an email to info@gibbsgiden.com. The transmission of information by email, or any transmission or exchange of information over the Internet, or by any of the included links is not intended to create and does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. This publication may not be reproduced or used in whole or in part without written consent of the firm.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

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Hotels Fall Down and Go Boom in Vegas

What do famed Las Vegas hotels The Dunes, Stardust, Sands, Aladdin, El Rancho, Riviera and Desert Inn have in common?  They have all been imploded to make room for (hopefully) more profitable projects on and around the Las Vegas Strip. They also help to make Vegas the “implosion capital of the world.”   Ever wonder how demolition contractors prepare for controlled implosions? Check out today’s article in the Las Vegas Sun.  

For more information about this topic please contact:

Christopher E. Ng, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

email: cng@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

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Giving Teeth To Prompt Pay

Public Entities and Contractors Take Note:  A Word of Caution When Withholding Retention Proceeds

 

A recent decision from the California Court of Appeals Second Appellate District, East West Bank v. Rio School District, attempts to clarify confusion about a public entity’s ability to retain funds from a contractor, under the “prompt pay laws” outlined in Public Contract Code 7107.   Namely, the holding in East West Bank signified a split in the California appellate courts regarding what type of “dispute” justifies the withholding of retained funds.

In this case, the contractor, FTR, was awarded the contract on a $7.345 million bid for construction of a school in the Rio District.  During the project, FTR submitted requests for approximately 150 change orders.  The District denied most of the change order requests.  Construction was completed in 2001, but the District retained $676,436.49, which was subject to withholding for multiple stop notice claims filed by FTR subcontractors.  By 2004, the last of the stop notices had been released, but the District did not release the retained funds.  FTR sued the District for, among other things, wrongfully withholding retention funds under Public Contract Code Section 7107.  The trial court held that the District had improperly withheld the retention payments, and FTR was awarded interest penalties in the amount of $1,537,404.96 under Section 7107.

On appeal, the School District relied on the holding in Martin Brothers v. Thompson (where the Court of Appeals Third Appellate District held that a California contractor could withhold funds when there was a bona fide dispute between the parties), to support the argument that it properly withheld the full amount of retention because the District and FTR had a good faith dispute over the change orders.  The Second District Appeals Court rejected the argument, declining to follow the holding in Martin Brothers.  The Court stated that the “purpose of a retention is to provide security against potential mechanics liens and to insure the contractor will complete the work properly and repair defects.  The retained funds must be paid to the contractor when the security is no longer required.”  When the security is no longer needed, the public entity cannot rely on an unrelated dispute to justify the retention of funds.

While it is not clear how the discrepancy between the Martin Brothers and East West Bank holdings will be resolved, one thing was made clear by the East West Bank holding– both public entities and general contractors must take caution when deciding to retain funds past the deadline under prompt payment laws.  As seen with the District in this case, deciding to withhold money for reasons unrelated to completion of the work or unpaid stop payment notice claims could result in harsh penalties.

Based on the split between the holdings in Martin Brothers and East West Bank, this issue is ripe for adjudication by the California Supreme Court.

For more information about this topic please contact:

Barbara R. Gadbois, Esq.

Molly E. Healy, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

email: bgadbois@gibbsgiden.com

email: mhealy@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

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Appellate Case of First Impression

 Defendant’s Cross-Claim Must Meet Probable Validity Test to Offset Amount of Plaintiff’s Writ of Attachment 

Lydig Construction, Inc. v. Martinez Steel Corporation

Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, Division One

No. D066854, 2015 WL 798557 (Cal. Ct. App. Feb. 26, 2015)

http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/archive/D066854.PDF
Lydig Construction, Inc. (“Lydig”), the general contractor on a California public works project, terminated a subcontractor, Martinez Steel Corporation (“Martinez”) for default, and sued Martinez for the costs incurred (approximately $200,000) by Lydig to complete Martinez’s scope of work.  Lydig also applied for a writ of attachment to freeze Martinez’s assets in the amount of Lydig’s claim while the litigation was pending.  Lydig’s writ application included declarations and documentation to support its claim.  Martinez opposed the writ application and filed a cross-complaint, alleging that Lydig breached the subcontract and owed Martinez close to $600,000; Martinez therefore argued that the amount to be secured by Lydig’s attachment was less than zero and as a result, Lydig failed to establish the probably validity of its claim, a requirement for obtaining a writ of attachment.  Martinez’s opposition to the writ application was supported by a declaration.  The trial court found that Martinez did not establish the probable validity of its cross-claim and granted Lydig’s application and issued writs of attachment in the amount of $203,315.

Martinez appealed, arguing that it did not have to establish the probable validity of its cross-claim in order to offset the amount to be secured by the writ of attachment.  Code of Civil Procedure section 483.015(b)(2) provides that the amount to be secured by an attachment shall be reduced or offset by any amount the plaintiff owes the defendant as claimed by the defendant in a cross-complaint, if the claim is one upon which an attachment could be issued.  Martinez argued that it did not have to establish the probable validity of its cross-claim in order to meet this requirement, but rather only had to satisfy the four elements of Code of Civil Procedure section 483.010 (a claim for money on a contract in an amount over $500 that is not secured by real property).

In a case of first impression in California, the Court of Appeal disagreed with Martinez and affirmed the trial court’s orders in full, holding that as a matter of law, Martinez was required to establish the probably validity of is cross-claim in order to obtain the offset permitted by Code of Civil Procedure section 483.015, and that Martinez failed to do so.  The Court noted that if a defendant could offset a plaintiff’s claim with a cross-claim that was not probably valid, a defendant could always and easily defeat a plaintiff’s right to prejudgment attachment, and that this was not what was intended by the Legislature.

http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/D066854.PDF.

For more information about this topic please contact:

Richard J. Wittbrodt, Esq.

Sara H. Kornblatt, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

email:  rwittbrodt@gibbsgiden.com

skornblatt@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

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New Registration Procedures for Public Works Contractors

Small register

On June 20, 2014, SB 854 was signed into law, establishing a new registration program for public works contractors, and altering certain requirements for public entities awarding contracts on public works projects.

Contractor and Subcontractor Requirements

The new program requires all contractors and subcontractors that intend to bid or perform work on public works projects to pay a registration and annual renewal fee of $300.  This fee is not tied to a particular project or award, but rather acts more like a license, merely enabling the registrant to bid on and perform public works.

In order to be registered as eligible to bid on public works projects, each contractor and subcontractor must also:

  • Have workers’ compensation coverage for any employees and only use subcontractors who are registered public works contractors;
  • Have a Contractors State License Board (CSLB) license;
  • Have no delinquent unpaid wage or penalty assessments owed to any employee or enforcement agency;
  • Not be under federal or state debarment;
  • Not be in prior violation of this registration requirement once it becomes effective.  However, for the first violation in a 12 month period, a contractor may still qualify for registration by paying an additional penalty.

In order to ensure compliance with the new program, the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) will post a list of registered contractors and subcontractors on its website.  Furthermore, the law includes safeguards to ensure that A) contractors are not in violation for working on a private job that is later determined to be a public job, B) a bid is not necessarily invalidated by an inadvertent listing of an unregistered contractor or subcontractor, C) contracts with unregistered contractors or subcontractors are subject to cancellation, but not void as to past work, D) an unregistered contractor or subcontractor can be replaced with one who is registered, and E) a contractor whose registration lapses will have a 90-day grace period within which to pay a late fee and renew.

The new program includes several phased-in requirements.  Beginning March 1, 2015, all bids are required to list only registered contractors and subcontractors.  All public works projects awarded on or after April 1, 2015, are required to use only registered contractors and subcontractors on such projects. Lastly, all contractors and subcontractors must furnish electronic certified payroll records directly to the Labor Commissioner.  This requirement will be enforced according to the following schedule:

  • June 20, 2014: All contractors on projects that were being monitored by the CMU/Labor Commissioner prior to the adoption of SB 854 must continue to furnish certified payroll records to the Labor Commissioner until the project is complete.
  • April 1, 2015: For all new projects awarded on or after this date, the contractors and subcontractors must furnish electronic certified payroll records to the Labor Commissioner.
  • Anytime: For projects besides those listed above, the Labor Commissioner may at any time require the contractors and subcontractors to furnish electronic certified payroll records. This may be especially prevalent for green energy school projects that receive Proposition 39 funding.
  • January 1, 2016: The requirement to furnish electronic certified payroll records to the Labor Commissioner will apply to all public works projects, whether new or ongoing.

One prominent exception to the electronic certified payroll reporting requirement, which the Labor Commissioner may exercise at his or her discretion, would excuse contractors and subcontractors on projects either A) under the jurisdiction of one of the four legacy DIR-approved labor compliance programs (Caltrans, City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Unified School District, and County of Sacramento) or B) that are covered by a qualifying project labor agreement from the listed reporting requirements.

Awarding Body Requirements

 

SB 854 also changes certain requirements for public entities awarding construction contracts on public works projects, some of which went into effect immediately, and others of which will be phased in.  As of the date of the bill’s enactment, awarding bodies have a duty to notify DIR when awarding a contract for any public works project using the online PWC-100 form (found here: https://www.dir.ca.gov/pwc100ext/).  In addition, awarding bodies are no longer obligated to pay DIR for compliance monitoring on state bond-funded projects and other projects that required the use of DIR’s Compliance Monitoring Unit.  The DIR will continue such monitoring, but it will not charge the public entities for any services provided.

The phased-in requirements for contractors and subcontractors listed above have corresponding requirements for awarding bodies as well.  Beginning March 1, 2015, an awarding body may not accept a bid from an unregistered contractor.  And beginning April 1, 2015, an awarding body may not enter into a contract with an unregistered contractor.  Certain exceptions to the registration requirement may apply, such as where a CSLB license would not be required at the time of bidding, or instances in which a party may have the ability to cure violations through the payment of penalty fees.

In addition, the bill requires the awarding party to put bidding parties on notice of the aforementioned requirements.  As of January 1, 2015, all calls for bids and contract documents must include the following information:

  • No contractor or subcontractor may be listed on a bid proposal for a public works project (submitted on or after March 1, 2015) unless registered with the Department of Industrial Relations pursuant to Labor Code section 1725.5 [with limited exceptions from this requirement for bid purposes only under Labor Code section 1771.1(a)].
  • No contractor or subcontractor may be awarded a contract for public work on a public works project (awarded on or after April 1, 2015) unless registered with the Department of Industrial Relations pursuant to Labor Code section 1725.5.
  • This project is subject to compliance monitoring and enforcement by the Department of Industrial Relations.

Further information regarding the new registration program, as well as link to the online registration application and a searchable project database, can be found here: http://www.dir.ca.gov/Public-Works/PublicWorks.html

For more information about this topic please contact:

Barbara R. Gadbois, Esq.

Sumner D. Widdoes, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

email: bgadbois@gibbsgiden.com

swiddoes@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel. For specific questions about any of the content discussed herein  please contact the article attorney author or send an email to info@gibbsgiden.com. The transmission of information by email,  or any transmission or exchange of information over the Internet, or by any of the included links is not intended to create and does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  This publication may not be reproduced or used in whole or in part without written consent of the firm.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

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Construction Boom Continues Across America

The good news keeps coming.

In its Construction Outlook report, Dodge Data & Analytics says that following an estimated 5% increase to $564 billion for construction starts in 2014, the overall value of U.S. construction spending will rise 9% to $612 billion as financing for projects becomes easier to obtain, investors shift to real estate and more construction bond measures are passed. Specifically, the report predicts that commercial building will increase 15%, institutional building will advance 9%, single family housing will rise 15%, multifamily housing will increase 9% in dollars and public works construction will improve 5%. Forbes reports that Texas, New York City and Los Angeles are among the hottest construction markets.

New projects abound all across the United States. In San Francisco, developers are planning a $1 billion mixed-use development located at the former home of the San Francisco 49ers (Candlestick Park), consisting of a $200 million mall, housing units, a hotel and performance venue. Similar large mixed use projects are planned for Frisco, Texas ($2-$3 billion) Cool Springs, Tennessee ($700 million), Daytona Beach ($800 million), La Quinta, California ($420 million) and even Harlem ($164 million). In addition, new public projects are also underway including the $2.5 billion. All Aboard Floridapassenger rail line project that will connect Miami, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, and a proposed $983 million high-speed rail expansion linking Dallas and Houston.

In addition, office construction was up 18% in September 2014 from September 2013 according to the Wall Street Journal, translating to $37 billion of office building construction for the year. More good news is on the horizon with new projects such as the $4.45 billion office complex in Kansas City, Missouri, which will take 10 years to build with 4.7 million square feet of office space planned.

As reported in Building Design + Construction (November 19, 2014), construction unemployment has hit an 8-year low, dropping to 6.4% in October. In fact, construction employment in October, at 6,095,000, was the highest it’s been since May 2009, with 231,000 jobs added (a 3.9% gain) over the last 12 months. According to the AGC of America, 83% of construction firms are reporting difficulty in finding qualified workers to meet the booming construction market.

Somehow I have a feeling construction employers prefer to have this dilemma than the alternative.

For more information contact:
Christopher E. Ng, Esq.
Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP
1880 Century Park East, 12th Floor
Los Angeles, California 90067
Phone: (310) 552-3400
email: cng@gibbsgiden.comThe content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel. For specific questions about any of the content discussed herein or any of the content posted to this website please contact the article attorney. The transmission of information on this website or any transmission or exchange of information over the Internet, or by any of the included links is not intended to create and does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. For a complete description of the terms of use of this website please see the Legal Disclaimer section at http://www.ggltsw.com/ggltsw-legal. This publication may not be reproduced or used in whole or in part without written consent of the author.
Copyright 2014 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP©
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