Pre-qualification Bill for School Construction Passes Assembly

May 30, 2012 - A Building Trades co-sponsored bill, AB 1565 by Assembly Member Felipe Fuentes, D-Arleta, to require pre-qualification of contractors on school construction projects, passed the Assembly today by a vote of 50-16, on a party line vote with Democrats in support and Republicans opposed. The bill, backed by labor and management and co-sponsored by the Building Trades, the California Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association and the California Legislative Conference of the Plumbing, Heating and Piping Industry, now moves to the Senate.

The bill is intended to ensure that scarce school construction dollars are spent with reputable contractors delivering quality, on-time and on-budget work. The need for the bill arose when increasingly, unqualified and unscrupulous contractors won bids with low-ball offers, and then proved unable to meet project standards and quality, while committing prevailing wage violations.  Pre-qualifying contractors increases on-time and on-budget project delivery and mitigates many other risks, and allows bids to be won by the lowest-bidding qualified contractor.

This bill would:

·        Require school districts electing to receive funds from the State Facilities Program (state bonds) to pre-qualify all contractors on modernization and new construction projects.

·        Establish a pre-qualification questionnaire and a rating system that, at a minimum, are substantially similar to standard forms developed by the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) pursuant to current law adding uniformity across the state. 

·        Provides school districts with the option of developing a district questionnaire rating system meeting the requirements in (2) or using the DIR standard questionnaire and rating system.

·        Applies to projects above $1 million. 

For more information contact legislative advocates Cesar Diaz or Jeremy Smith at (916) 443-3302.


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