Monthly Archives: December 2012

We Learn From Our Clients

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Uncategorized on Dec 21, 2012.

As lawyers, our clients look to us for answers. But we also learn from our clients. Winning strategies come from a combination of legal know-how and a clear understanding of the problems our clients face and the trends in the construction world. To this second point, the following is an article entitled “Out Educate, Out Build, Out Innovate” posted on the Metal Construction News website by one of Kaplin Stewart’s clients. It’s author, Gary Smith, is currently the president or Thomas Phoenix International and will be the president of the Metal Building Contractors and Erectors Association in 2013. ____________________ “Out Educate, Out Build, Out Innovate” was the title of a recent National Education and Action Summit I attended organized by the U.S. Department of Labor. Its focus was to reflect on the important contributions of registered apprenticeship programs on the 75th anniversary of the signing of the National Apprenticeship Act. I was thrilled to participate in this important summit. Since I returned from Washington, D.C., I’ve been thinking about the title and how it applies to my company, Thomas Phoenix International. With regards to “Out Build,” I would pit my Thomas Phoenix crews against any in the world. I know my men are superior: they are highly skilled, highly professional and committed to their trade. They are skilled craftsmen who know how to deliver complex pre-engineered buildings. The Thomas Phoenix team all subscribe to a code that Jim Owen, author of “Cowboy Ethics,” calls the “Code of the West:”  Live […]

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The Mechanics’ Lien Law Heads To The Pennsylvania Supreme Court

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Mechanic's Liens on Dec 21, 2012.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has agreed to hear the appeal of the Bricklayers of Western Pennsylvania Combined Funds v. Scott’s Development case, a move that could determine whether the Pennsylvania Mechanics’ Lien Law will be strictly or liberally interpreted.

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Amendment To The Steel Products Procurement Act Passes in Pennsylvania

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Public Construction Projects on Dec 6, 2012.

The General Assembly passed changes to the Pennsylvania Steel Products Procurement Act that Governor Corbett recently signed. The legislation (HB 1840), which will go into effect this month, effectively creates an exemption from the law’s requirement for certain listed items and directs the Department of General Services to issue a list on its website for those in the construction industry to check. The Steel Products Procurement Act requires that steel being used in public works projects in the Commonwealth be made in the U.S. To qualify as “made in the U.S.A.”, 75% of the cost to mine, produce, or manufacture the product must be incurred in the United States. The statutory definition of “public works” is broad and includes construction of all types as well as maintenance. The changes to the law create a range of exceptions to the “made in the U.S.A.” requirement for certain machinery and equipment. To be exempt, the DGS must certify in writing that an item qualifies for the exemption list because there are insufficient amounts of the steel product made in the U.S. to allow contractors to meet the requirement. The new provisions also charge the DGS with conducting an annual review of the list and the industry to update the list and to subsequently post that list on a publicly accessible website so that those putting in bids for public works projects can access it. Contractors involved in public works projects should be aware of this statute and not assume it can be […]

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It’s Time to Start Thinking About Electronic Document Management

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Technology on Dec 3, 2012.

As a construction lawyer, I am involved in two of the biggest paper generating professions the world has known. When done correctly, construction projects result in paper being used by the ream. From notices to bid, to plans and specifications, to change orders and applications for payment: everything is documented. Then lawyers fighting over construction project issues create even more legal documents for filing in the court system using copies of the same project documents. It is not any wonder that construction firms and their lawyers’ offices are bursting at the seams a good deal of the time. Enter Electronic Data Management, or EDM.

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