Ike's Newsletter April 12, 2024

What is an Independent Contractor?

If you think you have someone on your projects who is an independent contractor, then you could be liable for back pay and penalties. The article provided by ASAMW member CBM gives some good guidance on what to look for and protect yourself from any surprises.

It is highly likely that those you are calling independent contractors are immigrants. Comprehensive Immigration reform is not in the cards anytime soon, so employers will have to find a way to deal with the predominance of immigrant workers in construction. One study reports one in five people who are part of the essential workforce are immigrants. It is higher than that in construction in the DMV. Your board is wrestling with this issue. Your ideas are welcome.

Read More

Ike's Newsletter March 29, 2024

ASAMW is Meeting with its GC Partners to Discuss Expectations

Some of ASAMW’s GC Partners are willing to share the thoughts taken from our discussions with them.  Just reply to this email if you would like a copy of one or more of the write-ups taken during the meetings. Forrester, Balfour Beatty and LF Jennings will share their comments.  Some recent take-aways include:

  • Your (SUB) Foremen are not speaking up enough at scheduling meetings.  They should be empowered and trained to speak up about the effects on their schedules.
  • Lenders are part of the problem in getting retainage paid promptly.
  • Subs need to provide a punch list at the end of the job – not just wait for the GCs.
  • Do not use “by others” in a change or other correspondence.  Name who the “other” is whom you expect to do the work.

Avoid Wage Theft on Your Projects

GC partner Balfour Beatty and non-member subcontractor C. J. Coakley are named in a lawsuit brought by at least 40 workers claiming unpaid wages, etc. by a subcontractor of C. J. Coakley. Unfortunately, when a sub is hired by another sub to perform the work, that sub’s wage theft is borne by the sub and the general contractor. This is explained in this Construction Dive article.  

Read More

Ike's Newsletter March 15, 2024

ASAMW Awarded at National Convention

I was honored to receive the ASA Advocacy Award at SubExcel in New Orleans last week. This is a testament to the work our members do to ensure that we have the laws needed to protect our industry.

Additionally, since last week was Women in Construction week, Mary Whitlow, Kim Driggs, Rebecca Price, Patti Coen, Patty Peterson, Heather Asbury, and Karen Barbour were photographed with the women at the ASA SubExcel Convention to honor Women in Construction. See the photo here.

Read More

Ike's Newsletter March 1, 2024

ASAMW and GC Partner Expectations

A committee of the ASAMW Board is meeting with our GC Partners to discuss expectations. So far, we have learned from the GCs and they have learned from us. Such as:

  • Teach your PMs to escalate issues that the GC’s PM is not addressing. You can use ASAMW as well. We have a liaison with each of our GC Partners. 
  • Receiving too many change order notices is a problem for everyone. You should notify the GC if you receive a change order and it does not affect your work.
  • Our GC Partners are working to improve their Trade Partner relationships; especially with small, disadvantaged, minority, and women subcontractors.
  • Subs do not understand the GC's relationship with the Owner on issues of payment, change orders, retention, and scope. 
  • Most GCs are clearly stating in their contracts that 1099 employees are not to be used. Both GCs and subs are subject to litigation if workers claim they are misclassified. 

Two Members Speak Out on a National Stage

Kimberlee Driggs with D2 Site Work is the ASAMW Vice President. She is quoted in this ENR article on retainage. Articles like this help promote the idea of reform in the construction industry to get subcontractors out of financing construction. 

Read More