Construction Law News Blog

Showing 41 posts in Construction Contracts.

Oh Where, Oh Where, Oh Where Have the Indiana Recovery Act Dollars Gone?

It has been over two years since the completion of the first construction project funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (“Recovery Act”).  In July 2009, the Indianapolis Executive Airport’s runway was reconstructed at a cost of approximately $3.4 million.  As of June 30, 2011, Indiana is set to receive more than $4.5 billion in Recovery Act funding.  Of this amount, Indiana has already received $3,258,419,927.  So how has our share been allocated and spent?

Before detailing how Recovery Act funds were dispersed in Indiana and in order to bring context to these dollar amounts, it is helpful to review the overall nation-wide distribution of all Recovery Act funds.  Recovery Act funding is broken down into three basic categories:  (1) Tax Benefits; (2) Contracts, Grants & Loans; and (3) Entitlements.

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Ohio House Bill 153 and Public Construction Reform

On June 30, 2011, Ohio Governor John Kasich signed into law HB 153, the biennial budget legislation, which includes significant reforms to Ohio’s public construction laws.  Although the construction reforms set forth in HB 153 will take effect September 30th, there are a number of rules that the Department of Administrative Services (“DAS”) must issue pursuant to HB 153.  And it will be difficult to fully appreciate the impact of HB 153 until those rules have been issued. Below is a summary of significant provisions from the legislation:

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Funding from Commonwealth does not Automatically Invoke Application of Kentucky Model Procurement Code to Local Public Works Projects

The Kentucky Model Procurement Code (“KMPC”) governs the award of construction contracts by the Commonwealth, but does not automatically apply to a local government agency.  Only if the local governmental agency decides to adopt the KMPC does it apply.  But this may cause tension where a local public project can only be financed with assistance from state government.  In a recent Kentucky Court of Appeals case, Laurel Construction Company, Inc. v. Paintsville Utility Commission, 336 S.W.3d 903 (Ky.Ct.App. 2011), the effect of a Commonwealth grant of funds to local government’s procurement procedures, particularly the applicability or non-applicability of the KMPC to the local project, was examined.

In 2007, the Paintsville Utility Commission (“Commission”), a municipal entity providing water, sewer and gas services in Johnson and Lawrence counties, was in need of a new water tank.  In order to help fund the improvement, the Commission sought financial assistance from the State, eventually entering into a grant assistance agreement with the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority (“KIA”).  One provision of that agreement stated that “the [Commission] shall perform and/or cause to be performed all necessary acts (consistent with [the KMPC] and in accordance with applicable law) to plan design and construct the Project…”.      

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The City of Indianapolis will host a pre-bid conference on July 22, 2011, for the Deep Rock Tunnel Connector project.  Read More ›

Out-of-State Contractor Can Enforce Georgia Arbitration Award in Kentucky: Costly Lessons on Contents of Arbitration Provision

The interplay between the Kentucky Arbitration Act, the Federal Arbitration Act and the enforcement of an award and judgment in either state or federal court creates certain procedural challenges.  Kentucky’s latest court ruling resolved one open issue:  can an arbitration award obtained and confirmed in a different state be enforced in a Kentucky state court when the contract’s arbitration clause is silent on both the location of an arbitration and the court that may confirm an award, the parties are from different states, and the contract involves interstate commerce,?  Under the facts in Paducah Federal Credit Union v. Consultants & Builders, Inc., the answer is yes. Read More ›

New Ohio Transportation Bill Allows Public-Private Partnerships And Limited Design-Build Procurement

Ohio has joined a growing number of states turning to public – private partnerships, or PPPs, to help fund much needed infrastructure projects.  On March 30, Ohio Governor John Kasich signed a new $6.8 billion transportation bill into law. House Bill 114 allows the Ohio Department of Transportation to enter agreements with private entities to develop, finance, maintain, and operate transportation infrastructure.    Read More ›

Contractor Refused Contract Due to Past Litigation

The legal pendulum continues to swing further towards public owners in Ohio. In Triton Services, Inc. v. Talawanda City School District, 2011 Ohio 667 (Ohio App. 12th. Dist. Feb. 14, 2011) the Court held that a school district can reject an apparent low bid if the bidder is perceived by the public entity as litigious. Read More ›

A New Federal Landscape for Small Disadvantaged Contractors

On February 11, 2011 the Small Business Administration issued final rules that resulted in extensive changes to SBA’s Section 8(a) Small Disadvantaged Business program. The new rules become effective March 14, 2011. While the rules address a wide array of areas in the 8(a) program, the most significant changes relate to joint ventures between 8(a) companies and non-8(a) companies as well as the frequently used mentor-protégé agreements. These changes warrant close attention to 8(a) contractors and those that seek to do business with them. Read More ›

Ohio Prohibits Union-Scale Wage Requirements on School Construction Projects

The Ohio School Facilities Commission voted Thursday to prohibit the use of mandatory union-scale wage requirements on school construction projects. Prior to this reversal, the OSFC had required contractors to pay laborers “prevailing wage” rates or to agree to a “project labor agreement.” Read More ›

Overpaid DBE Subcontractor Could Not Defend Overpayment Based On DBE Compliance Issues

Central Bridge Company, LLC subcontracted with Javier Steel Corporation for steel materials and labor for seven different road projects in Kentucky. Central Bridge was to pay Javier for the labor and materials. Alternatively Central Bridge could pay third party vendors directly. Central Bridge identified Javier as a disadvantaged business enterprise (“DBE”) and used the steel subcontract to meet the “not less than 10% expenditure on economically disadvantaged individuals” to meet the DBE requirements. Read More ›

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Attorney Spotlight

C. Michael Shull, III focuses his practice on construction law and litigation. Michael's client representations range from casinos and ENR Top 400 contractors to design firms and subcontractors.