Company losing $3K daily after missing deadline


Lendlease, the construction management company supervising the new Delaware County Courthouse project, is now forfeiting $3,000 per day in liquidated damages to the county due to missing the July 31 completion date for the facility.

The original completion date for the $39 million building was June 30.

“In a previous change order, that date was extended to July 31, 2017,” said Director of Facilities Jon Melvin. “The contract does have a liquidated damages term, which (is imposed) if the contractor fails to achieve substantial completion within 30 days of the date set forth in the contract.”

Currently, the cost of the project is $184,500 short of the guaranteed maximum price of $39 million.

County Administrator Ferzan Ahmed said he and Melvin have been working with Lendlease on a substantial completion date of the facility.

“The definition of substantial completion, by contract, is when the building is available for us for its intended use,” Ahmed said. “As of August 30, 30 days after July 31, which is the recognized completion date, the contractor is in liquidated damages at $3,000 per day. When we pay their estimate, we will hold back $3,000 per day. They don’t give us any money back, we just hold back from what we owe them.”

“There is no reimbursement when the substantial completion date is agreed upon to be extended,” Melvin said.

Ahmed told county commissioners Monday that Lendlease is claiming a labor shortage has slowed the progress of the completion of the building. The company showed Ahmed its payroll information to back up the claim.

“I guess people don’t like to work overtime anymore,” he said. “People like to get in their hours and go home.”

Ahmed said company officials told him that they have tried everything to keep people on the job. He emphasized to the commissioners that the county can only recognize the labor shortage if there is evidence of an industry-wide shortage.

“It’s still up to them to prove to us contractually,” he said.

Ahmed said that Lendlease has been told that the county will not extend the contract completion date.

However, he said he had advised the company if it is able to prove there is an industry-wide labor shortage, then the county would work with the extended dates of completion.

“I’m still hopeful that by the end of the month we will have substantial completion so the building will be available for our intended use,” Ahmed said.

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Lendlease, the construction management company, is now forfeiting $3,000 per day in liquidated damages for missing the July 31 completion date on the $39 million Delaware County courthouse. Officials have reported that the project is $184,500 short of the guaranteed maximum price for the project.
http://www.delgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2017/09/web1_DSC_5833.jpgLendlease, the construction management company, is now forfeiting $3,000 per day in liquidated damages for missing the July 31 completion date on the $39 million Delaware County courthouse. Officials have reported that the project is $184,500 short of the guaranteed maximum price for the project. D. Anthony Botkin | The Gazette

By D. Anthony Botkin

abotkin@delgazette.com

D. Anthony Botkin may be reached at 740-413-0902 or on Twitter @dabotkin.