Introduction

As the nation’s largest energy consumer, the U.S. federal government plans to curb greenhouse gas emissions across its expansive portfolio of more than 350,000 federal buildings.[1] In a pioneering move, the Biden administration and Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced the Climate Smart Buildings Initiative (CSBI).[2] This bold initiative aims to upgrade federal buildings across the U.S. with emerging and sustainable technologies in an effort to meet the Biden administration’s Federal Building Performance Standard, which sets an ambitious goal to cut energy use and electrify equipment and appliances in 30%of the building space owned by the federal government by 2030.[3]

Continue Reading U.S. Government Plans to Leverage P3s to Make Federal Buildings More Energy Efficient

Reposted from The Dispute Resolver with permission.

You are conducting the final hearing of a high-dollar construction arbitration. Opposing counsel hands you the next document that counsel plans to use in questioning the witness on the stand. You notice that the document is bates stamped but has no exhibit number. So, you quickly consult opposing counsel’s exhibit list and – gasp – you find that the document is not on the list. What do you do? Do you object?

Continue Reading Opinion: Stop Requiring Exhibit Lists!

SDSP, LLC v. Attias, 2023 Pa. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1518

The Superior Court of Pennsylvania vacated a multimillion-dollar award to subcontractors arising from a payment dispute, and remanded the matter to the trial court for an attorney’s fees award to the developer who prevailed on appeal. This is a strong reminder to all tiers of the construction chain that Pennsylvania’s Contractor and Subcontractor Payment Act (CASPA) allows substantially prevailing parties — whether owners, contractors, or subcontractors — to recover fees incurred in proceedings involving payment claims.

Continue Reading PA Appellate Court Issues Strong Reminder: CASPA’s Fee-Shifting Mechanism Applies to Subcontractors, Contractors, and Owners Who Prevail in Payment Disputes

Introduction

America’s water infrastructure has long faced a critical need for funding and modernization. According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, there is a $105 billion funding gap for drinking water and wastewater infrastructure projected over the next two decades.[1] The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) addresses this issue head-on, allocating $55 billion to water infrastructure — the largest federal investment of its kind in the nation’s history.[2] However, the significance of the IIJA extends beyond its substantial funding. It distinguishes itself through a deliberate emphasis on efficiency, innovation, and collaboration in project delivery — a strategic focus that aligns seamlessly with the core principles driving successful public-private partnerships (P3s). As a result, the IIJA emerges as a catalyst, paving the way for the increased use of P3s in transforming America’s water infrastructure. This convergence of the IIJA’s ambitious objectives with the inherent advantages of P3s presents an extraordinary opportunity to revitalize our water systems, creating infrastructure that is resilient, sustainable, and capable of meeting future challenges.

Continue Reading The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act: A Pivotal Moment for Water Public-Private Partnerships in the United States

Published in Practical Law The Journal on May 2, 2023. © Copyright 2023, Reuters News, publisher of Practical Law The Journal. Reprinted here with permission.

Arbitration is the most widely used method of dispute resolution in the construction industry. Parties should understand the key concepts and common types of claims when deciding whether to arbitrate disputes involving construction contracts.

Continue Reading Construction Arbitration

Fed. Eng’rs & Constructors Inc. v. Relyant Global LLC, No. 3:19-CV-73-KAC-JEM, 2022 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95617 (E.D. Tenn., May 27, 2022)

This case arises out of the renovation of a U.S. Air Force dormitory in Missouri. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hired Relyant Global LLC to act as the prime contractor. Relyant subcontracted with Federal Engineers and Constructors, Inc. (FE&C). Relyant later terminated its subcontract with FE&C. FE&C filed suit against Relyant, and Relyant moved for judgment on the pleadings.

Continue Reading Choose With Care: Tennessee Federal Court’s Prompt Payment Conclusions Turn on Choice of Law Clause

Entech Engineering, P.C. v. Dewberry Engineers, Inc., 204 A.D.3d 467, 167 N.Y.S.3d 55 (1st Dep’t 2022)

The New York Supreme Court Appellate Division recently affirmed a ruling enforcing a pay-if-paid provision.

Defendant Dewberry Engineers, Inc. (Dewberry) contracted with the New York City Economic Development Corporations’ Build-It- Back Hurricane Sandy Program to inspect homes for structural, asbestos, and lead paint issues. Dewberry retained Entech Engineering PC (Entech) to perform pre-construction lead paint inspections of homes. The subcontract contained a pay-if-paid clause that made the city’s payment to Dewberry a condition precedent to Dewberry’s obligation to pay Entech.

Continue Reading NY Appellate Court Enforces Pay-If-Paid Provision Against Party With No Lien Rights

Globalization increasingly fosters complex cross border transactions and other international business relationships. These transactions and business dealings often give rise to disputes that are commonly resolved through international arbitration.

Continue Reading Troutman Pepper’s International Arbitration Handbook

The $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) is poised to change how the United States views and implements public-private partnerships (P3s). At a high level, the IIJA encourages public entities to consider P3s and incentivizes private entities to engage in the P3 market by dismantling roadblocks that have prevented the widespread adoption of P3s in the U.S. — including by removing government red-tape, increasing the availability of federal funding, and delivering much needed technical expertise and guidance to successfully execute P3s. In this article, the first in a series, we explore (1) the doubling of private activity bonds, (2) a P3 technical assistance program for government agencies, (3) TIFIA driven value-for-money analyses, (4) the streamlining of important environmental reviews, and (5) the creation of a government reporting feedback loop on P3 projects.

Continue Reading Federal Infrastructure Bill Paves the Way Toward More Transportation Infrastructure Public-Private Partnerships

On February 28, the New York Senate passed Bill S8430A to amend New York’s Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law Section 881. The current version of Section 881, enacted in 1968, offers a developer judicial recourse when an owner or lessee of a neighboring building refuses access that a developer needs to improve or repair its own building. This judicial recourse comes in the form of a temporary license for access. Section 881 provides limited guidance on how or when courts will issue these temporary licenses, stating only that a “license shall be granted by the court in an appropriate case upon such terms as justice requires.” Over the years, New York courts have filled in the contours of Section 881, providing additional rules for what temporary licenses may cover and when they may be granted. These cases address topics, ranging from required liability insurance to compensation for a landowner’s loss of quiet enjoyment of their property.

Continue Reading Proposed Changes to NY RPAPL Section 881: A Big Win for Developers <em>and</em> Owners