On June 27, 2017 Governor Brown signed SB 96 which is effective immediately and will be implemented by the Department of Industrial Relations starting July 1, 2017. SB 96 makes significant changes to the contractor registration and prevailing wage monitoring program. Some of these changes may be helpful to school and community college districts while others pose new requirements.
The significant changes are as follows:
The public works contractor registration and pending wage monitoring requirements currently applicable to all projects over $1,000, will not apply to maintenance projects of $15,000 or less, or to construction, alteration, demolition, installation, or repair projects of $25,000 or less. This will exempt many small maintenance and repair projects although they are still subject to payment of prevailing wages. (Labor Code section 1725.5 (f), 1771.1(n).) The contractor or subcontractor whose small project is exempt still has to keep wage records for three years.
Public works contractor registration and prevailing wage monitoring requirements, which went into effect in March-April 2015 for bids submitted and contracts entered into after that time, will also apply on or after January 1, 2018 to any public works contract executed before April 1, 2015. (Labor Code sections 1725.5(e) 1771.1(l).)
The public works contractor registration fee is increased from $300 to $400, renewable annually or beginning June 1, 2019, for up to three years at a time. (Labor Code section 1725.5(a).)
Where an unregistered contractor or subcontractor is found to be working on a public works project, the Labor Commissioner can issue a stop order prohibiting the use of the unregistered contractor or subcontractor until they are registered. This stoporder does not apply to registered contractors or subcontractors on the same project, but it could result in some disruption. (Labor Code section 1725.5(j).)
The awarding body’s notice (PWC-100 form) to the Department of Industrial Relations of a public works project subject to registration and monitoring is due within 30 days of the award of the contract, instead of 5 days currently, but no later than the first day a contractor has workers on the job. (Labor Code section 1773.3(a).) The notice must now include the registration numbers of the contractor and any listed subcontractors. (Labor Code section 1773.3(a).)
There is a civil penalty of $100 per day, up to $10,000, available against an awarding body that fails to provide the PWC-100 notice or enters into a contract with or allows an unregistered contractor or subcontractor to perform public work. (Labor Code section 1773.3(b).) The penalty can also be applied after final payment if an unregistered contractor or subcontractor is found to have worked on the project. (Labor Code section 1773.3(d).) Final payment cannot be issued until at least 30 days after all of the information required on the PWC-100 form has been submitted, which may impact some short duration projects with a single payment due. (Labor Code section 1773.3(d).)
If the awarding body is determined by the Labor Commissioner to have willfully violated contractor registration and monitoring requirements on two or more public works projects in a 12-month period, the awarding body becomes ineligible for state construction funding for one year. (Labor Code section 1773.3(f).) Again, this only applies to projects that meet the higher dollar thresholds.
Bids must now include in the subcontractor list the public works contractor registration number of each subcontractor, as well as the subcontractor’s name, location, contractor’s license number and portion of work. This applies to subcontractors for more than one-half of one percent of the total bid amount. As with contractor’s license numbers currently, an inadvertent error in listing a public works contractor registration number is not grounds for a bid protest or for finding a bid to be nonresponsive if the correct registration number is submitted by the prime contractor within 24 hours after the bid opening. (Public Contract Code section 4104(a).)
Should you have any follow-up questions or comments on this information, please contact us by e-mail or by telephone at (714) 573-0900 (Southern California) or (916) 245-8677 (Northern California).
http://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpg00Michael Travishttp://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpgMichael Travis2017-06-30 23:35:492017-06-30 23:47:33New Law Imposes Significant Changes to Public Works Contractor Registration and Prevailing Wage Reporting
http://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpg00Michael Travishttp://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpgMichael Travis2017-05-22 17:36:162017-07-01 00:23:11Parker & Covert LLP Featured in Orange County Attorney Journal
On November 17, 2016, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decided N.E. v. Seattle School District, in which it considered how to identify a student’s “then-current”/“stay-put” special education placement when a parent brings a due process complaint. The facts are somewhat convoluted: Student is disabled and exhibited serious behavioral problems. District A provided Student with […]
http://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpg00Michael Travishttp://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpgMichael Travis2016-12-07 12:14:022017-05-16 19:17:35Ninth Circuit Rules That Partially Implemented, Multi-Stage IEP, As A Whole, Is Student’s Then-Current Special Education Placement
On October 25, 2016, the California Court of Appeal decided San Diegans for Open Government v. City of Oceanside. At issue was whether the City of Oceanside (“City”) had complied with the Ralph M. Brown Act’s requirements regarding the contents of a local legislative body’s published agenda. (See Government Code § 54954.2, subd. (a).) The appellate court determined that the City had complied, providing a summary of what the Brown Act requires in order for an agenda to withstand such a legal challenge.
The Brown Act requires that the agenda of a regular meeting of a local legislative body (including boards of K-12 and community college districts) be posted 72 hours before the start of the meeting and contain “a brief general description of each item of business to be transacted or discussed at the meeting, including items to be discussed in closed session. A brief general description need not exceed 20 words.” (Government Code § 54954.2, subd. (a).)
Relying on several Court of Appeal decisions, the Court explained that an agenda must give the public more than a mere “clue” as to what a local legislative body intends to do at an upcoming meeting. (Moreno v. City of King (2005) 127 Cal.App.4th 17, 27.) However, a challenge to a local legislative body’s agenda cannot be “hypertechnical” or elevate form over substance. (Castaic Lake Water Agency v. Newhall County Water District (2015) 238 Cal.App.4th 1196, 1207.)
The Court further clarified that the fact that an agenda could have been more informative is not enough to amount to a Brown Act violation: “[T]o date, the Legislature has not required such detail or precision in local agency agendas; rather,…the statute only requires a ‘brief general description,’ which the cases in turn have determined only requires a fair notice of the essential nature of what an agency will consider.” (Relying on Carlson v. Paradise Unified School District (1971) 18 Cal.App.3d 196, 200.) It is “an elastic standard,” and the Brown Act is not violated in instances where “an agenda…was not in any sense confusing, misleading or unfairly opaque.”
Should you have any follow-up questions or comments regarding this case, please feel free to contact either our Southern California office at (714) 573-0900 or our Northern California office at (916) 245-8677.
http://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpg00Michael Travishttp://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpgMichael Travis2016-11-16 16:29:482017-05-16 19:17:35How Specific Must A Local Legislative Body’s Agenda Be In Order To Comply With The Ralph M. Brown Act?
In a recent decision, the three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the federal district court’s summary judgment in favor of a defendant school district, disagreeing with the district court’s and the state Administrative Law Judge’s ruling that a student with three disabling conditions did not require special education services because of his satisfactory performance in general education.
In L.J. v. Pittsburg Unified Sch. Distr., No. 14-16139 (9th Cir. Sept. 1, 2016), the Ninth Circuit panel found that the student’s improved performance was due to his receipt of special services not offered to general education students, and that the student’s suicide attempts and absences from school due to psychiatric hospitalizations were relevant to his eligibility even though they did not occur in the school environment. Finally, the panel held that the school district committed procedural violations of the IDEA by failing to disclose school records and failing to conduct a health assessment, thereby interfering with the parent’s opportunity to participate in the IEP process.
Over the course of four school years, the emotionally troubled student exhibited suicidal tendencies and disruptive behaviors. The student had multiple suspensions for kicking and hitting teachers, throwing rocks, calling teacher and peers names, and endangering and physically injuring classmates. The student had attempted to kill himself on at least three occasions, had manifested suicidal ideations prompting district’s mental health providers to conduct an emergency suicide evaluation, was diagnosed with three disorders (bipolar disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, and ADHD), and had been prescribed psychotropic medications.
The school district and the ALJ determined that the student was not entitled to special education services because he was not disabled. On appeal of the ALJ’s decision, the district court found that the student was indeed disabled under three IDEA categories (Specific Learning Disability, Other Health Impaired, and Seriously Emotionally Disturbed), but concluded that an IEP was not necessary because the student was performing well behaviorally, socially, and academically with the help of services the court characterized as general education accommodations, not individualized special education services.
On the parent’s appeal to the Ninth Circuit, the critical issue to be determined was whether general education was appropriate or whether the student demonstrated a need for special education services. Based upon the information reasonably available to the parties at the time of the IEP meeting, the court found that the student should have been categorized as a child with a disability within the meaning of the IDEA, and that, by refusing to provide the necessary services pursuant to an IEP, the student was not ensured such services in the future.
School records showed that, although the student was in a general education classroom, multiple specialized services were being provided and the progress was attributable to those services. The school district had been providing special services, including one-on-one assistance, specially-designed mental health services, clinical interventions by a behavior specialist, and individualized instructional accommodations that resulted in the student’s improved performance. The court further found that, even with the specialized services, the student threatened and attempted to kill himself on several occasions, and was hospitalized. Although the hospitalizations and suicide attempts occurred outside the school environment, the court found that the student’s emotional disturbance adversely impacted his attendance, his absences interfered with his education, he relied on psychotropic medications in order to attend school, and he had ongoing needs associated with his medications.
The Ninth Circuit determined that the school district violated IDEA procedural safeguards by failing to disclose assessments, treatment plans, and progress notes kept by the school, which deprived the parent of her right to informed consent in waiving the attendance of mental health clinicians at the IEP meeting. The school district also failed to conduct a health assessment, which rendered the school district and IEP team unable to evaluate and address the student’s medication and treatment related needs.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the district court’s decision and the case was remanded for development of an appropriate IEP.
http://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpg00Michael Travishttp://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpgMichael Travis2016-10-28 23:35:132017-05-16 19:17:35Student With Qualifying Disabilities Entitled to Special Education Services in Spite of Satisfactory Academic Performance
Under current law, school districts issuing general obligation bonds, certificates of participation (“COPs”), or other forms of debt must submit timely reports to the California Debt and Investment Advisory Commission (“CDlAC”) of the proposed issuance and final sale. SB 1029 provides that commencing January 1, 2017, a school district must additionally certify that it has adopted local debt policies in the report of final sale for any financing. The local debt policies must include specified provisions concerning the use of debt and that the contemplated debt issuance is consistent with those local debt policies. SB 1029 will also require local agencies to prepare an annual report for any debt issue for which it has filed a CDIAC report of final sale on or after January 21, 2017.
The local debt policies are to include all of the following:
(a) The purposes for which the debt proceeds may be used.
(b) The types of debt that may be issued.
(c) The relationship of the debt to, and integration with, the issuer’s capital improvement program or budget, if applicable, and
(d) Policy goals related to the issuer’s planning goals and objectives.
While the issuance of debt can be an appropriate method of financing capital projects, more stringent monitoring of such debt issuance is now required under SB 1029 to preserve a school district’s credit strength and budget and financial flexibility. The SB 1029 policies will assist school districts in determining the appropriate uses for debt financing as well as establishing prudent debt management goals.
http://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpg00Michael Travishttp://parkercovert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/logo_large_new-300x94.jpgMichael Travis2016-10-12 16:26:312017-05-16 19:17:35New Law Imposes Additional Requirements On School Districts That Engage In Financings