APC leaders met this past week for their annual Summer Board Retreat to continue to advance the association’s goals of serving as an effective advocate for the industry and a trusted partner with our owner agency partners.  Below are the highlights of the meeting.

Creating a more cooperative culture

PennDOT Deputy Secretary George McAuley asked APC to define a vision of project collaboration or, partnering, if you will.  Working together with the Department, APC believes we are forming a new culture of working relationships   Creating a more cooperative culture between PennDOT officials and contractor personnel is crucial for successful transportation projects.

During APC’s Summer Board Retreat, future industry leaders gathered to address the issue and answer the question, if we had the power to make changes for the better, what would the solution look like and how would we get there?  TQI Coordinator Kent Frese of Team LMI, facilitated the deliberations.

The results were presented to the Board and will be brought forth to the Transportation Quality Initiative joint leadership group in the fall.

Addressing PennDOT’s concerns on quantity over and underruns

PennDOT recently requested APC consider agreeing to the adoption of an Ohio DOT specification for adjusting unit prices for unit price bid items when the final quantity is less than 75% or greater than 125% of the bid quantity, which is de-facto considered a significant change in the character of the work in both states’ specifications.

Under PennDOT Publication 408, Section 110.02 (d), a new unit price may be calculated for the actual cost to perform the quantity of work which is either less than 75% or more than 125% of the bid item quantity. The Contractor is then paid that amount concurrently for the underrun or overrun as the work is performed.  The Contractor’s revised unit price for underrun quantities is limited to no more that the bid price.

The Board felt that the Ohio specification leaves little flexibility to vet special circumstances from either party. However, the Board agreed that we should look at the current specification and try to make some modification to minimize or eliminate situations where the Department feels the outcomes are unfair.

Advancing future leaders of industry and government

The Board also supported the idea of co-hosting a full day “Future Leaders of Industry” session on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017 preceding the APC PennDOT Fall Seminar. Holding a stand-alone Wednesday session, rather than a separate Fall Seminar track, would free participants to network and attend the Thursday technical workshops. Topics to include partnering – relationship building and knowledge transfer.  It was suggested that one session focus on contractors getting a better understanding of pressures on Department personnel and then a “bid day” scenario and, how policy decisions and unclear information can impact bids, etc.  The session will also focus on increasing a diverse workforce within the industry at all levels.