"You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club." - Jack London, American author

priorities

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Workers Compensation (SB 1582 Bradley/PCB Burgess; SB 1008 Perry/HB 1107 Albritton)
The Florida Supreme Court issued a number of rulings during the Summer of 2016 that upended how the Workers Compensation system operates in Florida. We are happy to be working with groups like Associated Industries of Florida and the NFIB on reform efforts this session. We are all better served, employer and employee, insurance carrier and attorneys, when we have a predictable system that offers appropriate support and recourse to injured parties. We look forward to immediate discussions surrounding how attorney’s fees are to be calculated and the longer discussion of how the system works for Floridians in general.
Legislative Result - Improved Regulatory Environment.

Statute of Repose Terminology Clarification (SB 204 Passidomo/HB 377 Leek)
The Statute of Repose is the period during which owners can bring claims against a contractor for latent defects on a project. Florida’s repose period is 10 years from the latest of our possible triggers: possession by the owner, issuance of certificate of occupancy, the date of abandonment, or completion of the contract. In 2015 an Appellate Court interpreted “completion of the contract” to mean when the owner issues final payment. ABC objects to this interpretation because owners can legally drag out final payment, resulting in a Statute of Repose period well beyond the legislatively prescribed 10 year period. Contractors have trouble maintaining insurance on a project beyond ten years which leaves them vulnerable down the road. This legislation looks to offer legislative clarification to a legal term of art.
Legislative Result - Improved Regulatory Environment.

Apprenticeship/Workforce Development Reform (HB 2712 McClain, HB 1021 Avila/SB 1312 Perry, SB 1290 Hutson)
Florida continues to suffer from one of the worst skilled worker shortages in recent history. During the 2016 Session, the Legislature approved the creation of a statewide task force to study how Florida responds to workforce shortages. ABC chaired the task force and is proud to offer the recommendations listed in the bills above. As the largest single provider of Apprenticeship Training in the state, ABC of Florida is dedicated to identifying how we can better educate individuals on the industry, on the availability of good and high paying jobs, and to attract that next generation of workers to one of the top five revenue generators for the state.
Legislative Result - Job Creation.

Building Regulation Reform (SB 1312 Perry/HB 1021 Avila)
The building code bill is an annual piece of legislation predominantly dealing with updating and clarifying regulations governing the industry. This year however, the recommendations from the Workforce Task Force (see above) have found their home in the Building Code bill. These recommendations will be the top priorities for ABC in the Building Code Bill this session.
Legislative Result - Job Creation and Improved Regulatory Environment.

Open Competition (SB 534 Perry/HB 599 Williamson)
ABC was founded on the “Merit Shop Philosophy” which means we believe that with public construction, where taxpayers and their dollars are concerned, that a competitive and open process is best for all involved. Unfortunately however, we have seen efforts by local governments to whittle down the available talent pool by establishing a series of pre-bid mandates that can eliminate competitive processes. From employee hiring mandates to required wage and benefit packages, the private sector is being asked to allow local governments to dictate private employment decisions. This legislation would preempt such mandates on public works projects where 50% or more of the funding comes from the state.
Legislative Result - Job Creation and Improved Regulatory Environment.


For more information, contact:
Rick Watson at rick@rwatsonandassociates.com or call 850-222-0000
Carol Bowen at cbowen@abceastflorida.com or call 954-465-6811

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