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In a stunning proposal, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has proffered a universal ban on noncompete agreements. This proposal, albeit a considerable step away from the norm, was not necessarily unpredictable. Most recently, the FTC made a preliminary finding that noncompete agreements constitute an unfair method of competition and therefore violate Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act, which prohibits “unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce.” If this proposal is enacted, it would have sweeping consequences in Massachusetts.

It’s an honor to serve as chairperson of ABC Massachusetts for 2023, and to be the first woman to chair our chapter. It’s a particular honor to do so when five of the commonwealth’s six constitutional offices are held by women.

WASHINGTON, Jan. 3—National nonresidential construction spending grew 0.9% in November, according to an Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of data published today by the U.S. Census Bureau. On a seasonally adjusted annualized basis, nonresidential spending totaled $930.1 billion for the month.

In summary, unless an indemnity clause expressly includes fee-shifting language, it likely will not permit the recovery of attorneys’ fees except for third-party claims. The better approach is to clearly and expressly set forth in your contract that attorneys’ fees will be provided in the event of a dispute with the counter party to your contract.

WASHINGTON, Dec. 2—The construction industry added 20,000 jobs on net in November, according to an Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of data released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On a year-over-year basis, industry employment has risen by 248,000 jobs, an increase of 3.3%.

Late last year our chapter was awarded a Construction Diversity and Apprenticeship Expansion Grant by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development. Part of this grant funded the internal diversity study of ABC MA membership. I’m proud the survey found that members have taken active steps to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion within their companies.