Heyl Royster

 

Using Twitter to Explain Your Next Construction Project

With fall arriving, many governments are already considering their plan for projects in 2018. Construction season can be a very exciting time, and as this newsletter and our firm seminars have conveyed over the years, it can also be a nerve-wracking experience unless you adequately prepare and understand the universe of legal issues involved in those projects.

In today’s world of short sound-bytes and “tweets” as the primary sources for news (or other information), I wanted to try and capture the best of both worlds in this article. In essence, I am going to address numerous laws and legal issues that come to mind (or at least, should come to mind) as you consider and start your public construction project – but in a social media format. Specifically, each issue will be addressed in 140 characters or less, the maximum length of a “tweet” you can put out on Twitter. Do not overlook the “hashtags” I added, as those may also provide some important, related tidbits.

Obviously, the format is for entertainment purposes only. This is not an exhaustive list of laws at issue, nor is it a thorough explanation of all of the issues the laws present. However, it should get you pointed in the right direction.

Professional Services
Need a surveyor, engineer, and don’t have one? Illinois law typically requires interview process.
#professionalservicesselectionact

Oversight
Do you want someone in-house to oversee project? Do you want a committee to monitor project?
#projectmanagerscanhelpstreamlineprocess

Bids
Services, labor & materials may need a bid. Don’t be cute and split up a project to avoid bid project.
#whatisyourbidthreshold

Freedom of Information
Any documents created for the project are subject to the Freedom of Information Act.
#includesbidpacket #claimoftradesecretisoverused

Prevailing Wage
Prevailing wage required for (sub)contractors on public works–anything funded in whole or part with public funds.
#nomonetarythreshold

Employees
Want to use employees on project? Do you have work comp coverage? Did you hire them just for project?
#avoidingprevailingwageisfrownedupon

Bonds
Contractors may automatically be required to get construction, performance, and other bonds.
#askforthemanyway #askforanoriginalcertifiedcopy

Insurance
Ask your contractor to provide you with proof of insurance and your government to be listed as additional insured.
#inadditiontobonds

Substance Abuse Policies
Illinois law requires contractors to share their employee substance abuse policies with you if they want to work on your project.
#anyIllinoisproject #yeseventhisproject

Change Orders
Should you only discuss and simply agree on necessary changes during project? No. Demand formal change order.
#geteverythinginwriting

Prompt Payment
If contractor fulfills obligations and you refuse to pay, you may be charged penalty.
#promptpayment #youmusttellthemifyoudontlikeit

Open Meetings
Problem with the project? Litigation “imminent”? Closed session at public meeting is possible.
#whatisyourdefinitionofimminentlitigation

Statute of Limitations
Do you know how long you have to sue on a breach of contract claim?
#typicallytenyearstosuecontractor #contractoronlyhasoneyeartosueyou

If you have questions on anything presented here or want legal advice on your upcoming construction project, do not hesitate to contact any of us at Heyl Royster (@HeylRoyster on Twitter).