Following the construction industry and related legal topics in the United States.


Friday, December 21, 2007

North Carolina General Assembly Strives for Efficiency in 2007

As we reflect on the legislation enacted by the North Carolina General Assembly that impacts the construction industry in 2007, the goal of the General Assembly for 2007 can be summarized in a single word: efficiency. The need for energy efficient buildings, efficient cost practices, and efficient review of construction plans that will allow outdated buildings to be renovated and many needed new public buildings to be built more rapidly appears to be the primary objective for 2007. The following is a brief summary of the laws that demonstrate the apparent need identified by the General Assembly for legislation that will promote a more efficient construction process in North Carolina:

  • S.L. 2007-397 (SB 3) - Promote Renewable Energy/Baseload Generation: N.C. Gen. Stat. §62-110.1 was rewritten to address the necessity for an analysis of the future needs for expansion of generating facilities and specified that a certificate would only be granted for a coal or nuclear facility if it meets, among other requirements, the energy efficiency standards adopted by the legislature.
  • S.L. 2007-446 (SB 73) - Improve State Construction Process: N.C. Gen. Stat. §143‑135.26(2) was revised in an effort to “expedite the plan review, approval and permit process” through the development of a “memorandum of understanding” that would state the dates for meetings and plan reviews as well as an estimated plan review time for the reviewing agency. N.C. Gen. Stat. §143‑341(3) was amended to include the requirement of a meeting of the “stakeholders for each State capital improvement project” to review the responsibilities of the project.
  • S.L. 2007-303 (SB 735) - Construction Plan Review: As of October 1, 2007, N.C. Gen. Stat. §58‑31‑40(b) requires that any plan for a building consisting of 20,000 square feet be submitted to and approved by the Commissioner for review of the safety of the building.
  • S.L. 2007-365 (SB 1245) - Retainage Payments/Construction Contracts: As discussed in greater detail in a previous blog, N.C. Gen. Stat. §143-134.1 was rewritten to provide specific requirements for a more efficient release of retainage payments to subcontractors in state construction contracts.

(This entry was published by Culley Carson, a member of Womble Carlyle's construction law practice group.)

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