July 11, 2012

Malloy signs design-build, PLA law

Gov. Dannel Malloy on Wednesday signed a new law allowing for greater efficiencies on construction projects while insuring contractors enter into agreements with local laborers.

Public Act 12-70 allows the state to perform construction projects using the design-build method where one contractor manages the architecture and construction aspects jointly. This replaces the low-bidder method where the construction and design phases of the project are awarded to contractors with the lowest bid. Design-build is considered a more efficient method that makes it easier for projects to get started and lowers the costs of construction through greater cooperation.

Connecticut joins 46 other states with design-build provisions.

The new law also solidifies the new for project labor agreements on state development projects. PLAs require contractors to use union labor for construction projects. In February, the Connecticut Supreme Court upheld a contractor's argument that PLAs are discriminatory, and the state legislature passed the new law in the spring reaffirming the need for PLAs on state projects.

Malloy signed the bill at the University of Connecticut Health Center, which is the site of one of the largest state development projects.

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