For the first time, the United States is one of the top 10 most attractive global markets for investment in infrastructure, rising three spots from its 2012 ranking, according to a report based on the ARCADIS Global Infrastructure Investment Index.
A new rule from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Veterans’ Employment and Training Service replaces the requirement for some federal contractors to report the number in each protected veteran category and instead requires contractors to report the total number of protected veterans they employ and hire on a new form (VETS-4212).
OSHA issued a final rule on Sept. 26 extending the compliance deadline for employers to ensure that crane operators are certified by an OSHA-recognized, accredited certification body. The deadline has been extended by three years to Nov. 10, 2017.
As the country’s demographics change and the emerging workforce is pulled toward other industries, construction companies are challenged with attracting qualified workers while retaining existing talent. Employers have a smaller pool of prospective workers from which to draw. To overcome these challenges, contractors should create and aggressively execute an employee recruiting and retention plan that revolves around establishing a “preferred place of employment” mindset within the management team.
Surety companies prequalify contractors to guarantee the company has the capital, capacity and character to complete the project. The surety will use its money, up to the amount of the bond, to make the owner of the construction project whole if the contractor does not perform or does not pay its suppliers or subcontractors. To offer that guarantee and stand behind the contractor, a good surety underwriter will understand the complexities of construction accounting and use a thorough underwriting process.
With the passage of S.B. 785 on Sept. 30, more California state and local agencies have the authority to utilize design-build project delivery for new infrastructure projects. However, the bill contains exclusionary provisions giving benefits to contractors that sign collective bargaining agreements under the assumption they perform work safely, as well as provisions that discriminate against journeymen who did not graduate from state-approved apprenticeship programs.
Under a new OSHA rule that takes effect Jan. 1, employers will have to report all work-related hospitalizations, amputations or eye losses within 24 hours of the event causing the injury—regardless of the number of employees involved.
In this age of communication through the use of so many electronic devices, there is still no better method than an old-fashioned meeting between suppliers and construction teams. If they partner right from the planning stage, the benefits are tremendous for both groups.
The decision to add a co-surety to a company’s bonding program is never an easy one, nor is it usually straightforward. It is important to consider capacities, loyalty, personalities and even feelings.
The temptation is for businesses to overextend themselves as the economy picks up, but contractors that managed the downturn well and remain disciplined are in a good position to attain surety credit and successfully complete work as economic conditions improve.