Ike's Newsletter August 7, 2020

Executive Director's Report

Retainage – Are you Utilizing the Law? Please make sure you are getting retainage according to the law.  What do your records show in outstanding retainage?  Here are some helpful hints:

DC - The DC law states On all Public contracts, 10 percent retainage shall be withheld. When 50 percent of the work is complete, the Mayor has discretion to eliminate or reduce the retention. D.C. CODE § 2-203.01. If contractors ask for the reduction, they are highly likely to get it.  Are you asking the GC for a reduction?  No retainage law exists on private work.

MD – No more than 5% retainage on both Public (Md. Code Ann., State Fin. & Proc. § 17-110) and Private (Md. Code Ann., Real Prop. § 9-304 (West)) work.  Additionally, all retainage on private work is due within 90 days of substantial completion (§ 9–303/304).

VA – No more than 5 percent on public work (Va. Code Ann. § 2.2-4333).  No law on private work.  

Click here for a useful chart on the retainage laws in the DMV provided by Smith Currie.

What about Substantial Completion? The subcontractors in New York influenced a bill that awaits the Governor’s signature.  It defines substantial completion as “the state in the progress of the project when the work required by the contract with the public owner is sufficiently complete in accordance with the contract so that the public owner may occupy or utilize the work for its intended use provided further that substantial completion shall apply to the entire project or a portion of the entire project if the contract with the public owner provides for occupancy or use of a portion of the project.” This law requires public owners to provide a complete punch list to the prime contractor no later than 45 days after substantial completion.  Do we need a definition like that on public projects in the DMV?

Where are Construction Costs Heading?  Are you seeing more bidders on the projects that you are estimating?  ABC and AGC indicate construction costs are going down for the first time in ten years.  This Construction Dive article attributes the decline to pandemic-related forces causing a “pinch in profits”, increased competition, and partially to a decline in material prices, especially energy.  

ASAMW and CFMA will have Chief Economist Ken Simonson of AGC share insights into the current economy in the DMV on Sept. 8th.  Click here for more information.   

Skanska used technology on NY Airport.  How do you use current technology to build a $4 billion airport project and make the owner happy?  This article in Construction Dive indicates aerial photogrammetry, 4D scheduling, and “over capture” photos aligned the as-builts with the original 3D model.  LaGuardia Airport remained open, so the subcontractors used 3D BIM to deal with clashes.  

Join us on the Golf Course. On October 5, over 100 ASAMW members and guests will come together for our Annual Fall Golf Tournament. Registration and sponsorships are available. Click here for more information. We hope to have your support for one of our biggest fundraisers of the year!

Advocacy Issues

Maryland - You can continue to apply for the Apprenticeship Tax Credit in Maryland through Jan. 1, 2025. Click here for a copy of the Apprenticeship Startup Act of 2020. 

DC -  To follow up with our meeting with Paul Blackman, we are seeking your input on any issues you have receiving retainage on work for the Dept. of General Services.  See article above.  

Virginia - Here are the new COVID VOSH Mandates for Construction by Smith Currie

Do you have any comments on the new COVID mandates in Virginia?  Please reply with your take on the requirements. . .Fair or Unfair?

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