Construction off and running in 2020.
Depending on who you talk to or what you read, growth in the construction economy is slated to slow. History would seems to suggest so. Dodge Construction Outlook is predicting a -4% decline in construction starts from 2019 activity. While that is an overall national estimate, they note that certain geographic areas, Greater Boston included, may not be as strongly impacted as other regions. As we enter the a new decade, ASM members continue to navigate this healthy construction economy. The industry is not without its challenges, however. Low unemployment means a constant search for more skilled tradespeople and as an association that represents over 30 trades, some are impacted more than others. At ASM, we will continue to serve our members to help them be successful, whether that means providing the latest education on safety, technology or legal topics, to working with legislators and regulators to ensure a fair set of laws and rules in construction.
Safety Roundtable- OSHA Update
ASM members attended our most recent Safety Roundtable to hear an update on from OSHA. Mark Heffron with OSHA regional office gave an overview of OSHA’s multiemployer workplace enforcement and citation policy. He also spoke about the penalty increases, the criminal investigation process, and their national and regional emphasis programs. While there are so many aspects to construction, there is not more important topic than safety. ASM members recognize that worker safety on the jobsite is critically important and regular training is essential. The data indicate that there were at least 47 workplace deaths in 2019 and construction accounted for many of those. Safety must continue to be front and center for all construction companies. Special thanks to our Rountable co-chairs Eric Stalmon with the Marr Companies and Valerie Stone with TG Gallagher.
Legal Seminar- Springfield
As everyone in the construction industry knows, fair contracting is critic to the success of a project and the success of a business. In January we hosted the second in our Legal Series on Negotiating Subcontracts. At the seminar, experienced construction lawyers from Corwin & Corwin focused on contract provisions that are typically the most problematic for subcontractors, and provided practical tips for negotiating the best terms possible. Those provisions typically include change orders, payment terms (including prompt pay and retainage), and issues surrounding indemnification for personal injury, property damage, and faulty construction.
DCAMM Update with Commissioner Carol Gladstone- February 12
Commissioner Gladstone will talk to ASM members about the conversion to online bidding and other recent changes the procurement process and will give a heads up on changes in the works to improve change order processing and payment procedures. She will also give an update on the state’s capital program and projects on the horizon in the coming year. This is a must attend event for members who do public work. Contractor certification is required when an awarding authority (any Massachusetts public agency) solicits bids for a vertical construction project under M.G.L. Chapter 149 or Chapter 149A with an estimated construction cost of at least $150,000. The project must be for the construction, reconstruction, demolition, maintenance, or repair of a vertical building. More than half of ASM Members are certified filed sub-bidders, certified by the Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance.
ASM Young Professionals Night at the Celtics- March 18
The ASM Young Professionals (YP) Group will hold its 5th annual night at the Celtics on March 18th at the TD Boston Garden, which has recently undergone substantial renovations completed by many ASM member companies. The mission of the Young Professionals Group is to develop, engage, and empower young professionals to grow and flourish in the subcontractor industry through unique networking and programming events. The YP Group is open to employees of ASM member companies.
Michael McDonagh is the CEO of of the Associated Subcontractors of Mass., Boston.