The Blog

Florida Condominium Collapse Forces Massachusetts to Reevaluate Construction and Design Liability Laws

  by Alexander Tsianatelis, Esq.   Many states and jurisdictions, including Massachusetts, have been prompted to re-examine their construction and design liability related laws in the wake of the Champlain Towers South high-rise condominium collapse in Surfside, Florida. One such law is under particular scrutiny in Massachusetts. In Massachusetts, Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 260, §2B (the “Statute of Repose”) generally prevents the enforceability of any “action of tort for damages arising out of any deficiency or neglect in the design, planning, construction or general administration of an improvement to real property” after a period of six years from “the earlier of the dates of: (1) the opening of the improvement to use; or (2) substantial completion of the improvement and the taking of possession for occupancy by the owner.” Generally, this means plaintiffs are prevented from enforcing tort claims against ...

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Beacon Hill Roundup - November 23, 2021

  On Tuesday, November 23rd, the Joint Committee on Judiciary is holding a hearing regarding 'Privacy & Protected Classes' which includes one bill of interest – S.1089 - An Act to protect unpaid interns, volunteers, and independent contractors from sexual harassment and other forms of discrimination filed by Senator Lovely (D - Second Essex).   On Monday, November 15th, House Speaker Ronald Mariano (D - 3rd Norfolk) announced he intends to campaign for another term in the House next November, then another term as speaker in January 2023. Speaker Mariano was first elected to the House in a 1991 special election, and this would be his 16th full term in the House. His predecessor, former House Speaker Robert DeLeo, who was House speaker for a record-setting 12 years, resigned mid-term in October 2019, leaving office to take a job at Northeastern University and creating the opportunity for Mariano, his deputy, ...

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New Member Spotlight: Pidgeon & Co

  When Molly Pidgeon graduated from Wentworth Institute of Technology with a BA in interior design, she went to work in construction. She thought the experience would improve her designs, but the plan was ultimately to make her way back to the design world. She has – sort of. The construction work kept coming and today Molly heads Pidgeon & Co., a small but mighty construction management firm with an in-house design team. Her business model is based on flexibility. Some of the jobs the company takes combine construction management and design, on others Pidgeon & Co.’s role is pure construction management. They offer specialized expertise in commercial interiors, core improvements, ADA compliance upgrades, and elevator installation, institutional and have also done lab, clean room and health care-related work – an area the company is looking to grow.  Another focus is on building the relationships that are the key to l ...

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ABC MA Honors 2021 Excellence in Construction Award Winners

  After celebrating remotely last year due to the pandemic, over 175 ABC MA winners gathered at the Burlington Marriott last week to honor the 2021 Excellence in Construction Award winners.   The pandemic also made it impossible to hold our annual Safety Night last May, so we also honored this year's Diamond, Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze STEP Safety Award winners.   The applicant pool for the 29th annual awards was particularly competitive, with each winner selected for the high standards of craftsmanship, safety and quality delivered by talented merit shop workers using the efficient merit shop approach.    Thanks goes out to this year’s panel of independent judges for the time and talent they contributed to selecting our winners. They are: ·      Ken Bromfield, P.E., Independent Engineering Consultant ·      Carolyn Day, AIA, Perkins Eastman ·& ...

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ABC to Congress: College Degrees Do Not Define Career Success

  (via ABC National) THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2021 10:00 AM   WASHINGTON, Nov. 4—Today, longtime construction industry leader, instructor and military veteran Frank Boecker testified on behalf of Associated Builders and Contractors before the U.S. House Committee on Small Business Subcommittee on Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Workforce Development on the indispensable role that community colleges, trade schools and career and technical education programs play in the construction industry. Boecker, who serves as human resources manager for electrical contractor Sunwest Electric, headquartered in Anaheim, California, called for continued investment in apprenticeship programs, craft courses and career and technical education programs, as well as the need for the federal government to promote all programs and pathways that lead to a fulfilling career. “The workforce shortage facing construction and many other industries across the country is one ...

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The Value of a Career in Construction (from Connolly Brothers Inc.)

  By Jay Connolly - President, Connolly Brothers Inc.   The United States is currently experiencing the repercussions of generations of thinking that college is the only suitable post-secondary path for its students. I deeply appreciate the value of a college education and am grateful for many of the important lessons in life and leadership I learned at Boston College. There is no doubt that higher education plays a vital role in strengthening and advancing civil society and preparing our youth for the workforce, and to be responsible citizens. I also believe it is important that we break free from the messaging to our high school students that a four-year liberal arts college is “the only good option.” Because construction has been my family’s business for 140 years and counting, I have had ample opportunity to both witness and experience the joys of a career in construction. As October is “Careers in Construction Month,” I would like to take a moment ...

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ABC’s Construction Backlog Indicator Inches Lower in September; Contractor Confidence Down for Second Consecutive Month

  (via ABC National) TUESDAY, OCTOBER 12, 2021 9:50 AM Posted in Construction Backlog Indicator, Construction Economic Update, Construction Confidence Index, News Release 2021   WASHINGTON, Oct. 12—Associated Builders and Contractors reports today that its Construction Backlog Indicator fell to 7.6 months in September, according to an ABC member survey conducted Sept. 20-Oct. 4. The reading is down 0.1 months from August 2021, but up 0.1 months from September 2020.     ABC’s Construction Confidence Index readings for sales, profit margins and staffing levels each declined in September, but remain above the threshold of 50, indicating expectations of growth over the next six months.     “Nonresidential construction backlog declined for a second consecutive month as skills and input shortages hammer the industry,” said ABC Chief Economist Anirban Basu. “A growing number of contractors ...

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The Drive For 500 Member Companies Is On!

  Help us achieve our goal of hitting 500 members by the end of 2021; get involved for the chance to win great prizes and grow the association!   For years, ABC members have heard the slogan, “More members, more clout.” The statement is undeniably true, and ABC has a chance to reach 500 members in the coming year.   That’s one reason why the 2021 membership drive is so important. The other is that in a political environment that includes a staunchly pro-union administration in Washington and an increasingly labor-friendly legislature on Beacon Hill, ABC needs the clout to stand up for our member companies.   What Is the membership drive? The Membership Drive is ABC's biggest annual recruiting event. The theme for the drive this year will be the Indy 500, as we race for ABC to get 500 members in 2021. The membership drive is a team-based event where we will have 30+ participants from the Board of Directors, Membership Co ...

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Gould Construction Institute's Fool Proof Leader Series To Launch Next Week

  The Gould Construction Institute’s Fool Proof Leader Series is set to begin on October 12th and will cover a broad range of skills that your employees from administration to upper management can access from the comfort of their desks.    The series is designed for construction business owners seeking to develop future leaders within their organizations. It is designed for project managers, superintendents, foremen, engineers, estimators, financial managers, operations managers, and others–whether new or experienced in their roles.   Students will learn the core skills managers need to be successful. They will develop a strategic mindset that results in personal and professional growth. They will find out their native leadership style and how to adapt to changing business situations and conditions. Graduates of the program increase the value they contribute to their organizations.   The series will be taught by fellow ABC member and longtime frie ...

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Braintree School Prequalification Restarts Without PLA

  The prequalification phase of the bidding for the construction of the new Braintree South Middle School has begun for the second time, now without the project labor agreement (PLA) that was struck down as a result of a successful legal challenge brought  by ABC and open shop allies.     Earlier this month, Norfolk Superior Court Judge Paul D. Wilson granted an injunction against the use of the PLA and ordered the project to be rebid without it.  A new round of prequalification is now underway, and bidding documents are scheduled to be released on Nov. 1 and bids are due on Nov. 23 (sub bids) and Dec. 7 (GC bids).     In his decision, Judge Wilson noted that if the town moved quickly it would still be able to open the new school for the 2022-23 school year.     “We are pleased that the Town of Braintree is complying with the judge’s clear ruling that this PLA did not meet the legal standard set our by our s ...

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