Construction Executive magazine celebrated its first decade of monthly publication in January 2013 with a very special 10th Anniversary Issue. We would like to recognize and thank the following corporate sponsors who made this edition possible. Continue »
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued new, comprehensive guidance on a fundamental tax issue: Is an expenditure a current repair or supply deduction, or must it be capitalized and depreciated over many years? For the most part, the regulations—under discussion since 2004—are nearly complete, with only minor changes anticipated before they become final in 2013. They apply to virtually every business that incurs repair and maintenance costs and owns tangible property. Continue »
Many construction firms feel that renovation, remodeling and alteration (RRA) projects are a nuisance, eat into profits and hurt cash flow. But views are changing. RRA projects increasingly are being viewed as untapped opportunities waiting to be defined and delineated into revenue streams. Continue »
This is the first of a three-part series of articles that will address bribery schemes in the construction industry. Each article will discuss the different types of transactions involving bribery and methods of prevention and detection.
Wendell Walters, a former assistant commissioner at the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, pleaded guilty in March 2012 to accepting $2.5 million in bribes. He was arrested in October 2011 on racketeering charges and accused of taking kickbacks from real estate developers in exchange for directing contracts exceeding $22 million to them. In his statement, Walters admitted to helping developers and contractors “get on the approval list” for city contracts in exchange for “cash payments and other benefits.” The Brooklyn U.S. attorney in this case also charged six developers with bribing Walters and demanding kickbacks from contractors. In addition, they have been accused of increasing invoice amounts to absorb the costs of the bribes.
Thorough planning is the most effective way to save time, trouble and money on a construction project. It establishes a baseline for the direction of the project and helps it continue on a straightforward path. Poor planning can negatively impact the project’s scope, schedule and communication, and ultimately drive up costs.
Once a project plan is established—including schedule, cost, scope, quality, procurement, safety, risk and communication plans—it must be revisited frequently to determine if team members are still aligned with objectives or if the plan needs to be recalibrated. A good communication system among the project team is critical to gathering this information regularly. Continue »
A general contractor approached a management consultant with concerns about a two-building apartment project the firm was pursuing. The pre-construction services contract had dragged on for six months and the architect was pushing for final budget figures even though it had not submitted plans for the second building. The contractor wanted to know if the company should sign a $14 million contract for the project. Continue »