COVID-19: NYC SCA

3/30/20

Please see the message below from Lorraine Grillo, President & CEO: 

Dear SCA Colleagues:

In accordance with Executive Orders issued by the Governor and direction from the Mayor, SCA must “pause”, until further notice, all non-essential construction projects and support.  This will have a major impact on all of us, including:

  • Capacity projects, CIP projects, and remediation of lead-based paint are stopping immediately.
  • Over the next few days, SCA and its contractors will be working to safely and orderly shut down approximately 670 active construction projects. 
  • All consultant design projects will stop immediately.
  • Procurement of construction and design contracts will pause immediately.

We are notifying all of our prequalified contractors, consultants and other vendors of the need to pause virtually all of our construction and consultant support work, as well as sending more specific direction to contractors with active contracts.  Please note that, during this pause period:

  • The SCA remains open for business 
  • We will continue to pay contractors and consultants for work already performed
  • Staff, including contingent staff, who are working remotely will continue to do so and follow the direction of their managers.
  • CM and Safety will continue to monitor site safety conditions for the duration of this pause. 

The SCA may redeploy staff as necessary in order to maintain business continuity.

Starting two weeks ago, you all responded to a challenge that was unprecedented in SCA’s 31-year history by converting from 30% of staff working remotely to 98% remote work.  We now have the further, unprecedented challenge of stopping substantially all construction, consultant design, and other consultant support activities for an indefinite period of time.  Your managers and supervisors will provide further, specific direction to you in the days ahead.

Please continue to exhibit those traits that have been the hallmark of SCA and its staff through all other crises, including your dedication, creativity, adaptability and patience.  You have been remarkable, and we will get through this together.

NYC SCA also issued the following notice:

NOTICE TO ALL SCA COUNTERPARTS

All non-essential construction projects of the New York City School Construction Authority ("SCA"), other than Emergency projects, are to be placed on "pause" until further notice, pursuant to Executive
 Order 202.6, and the guidance issued by Empire State Development entitled "Guidance for Determining Whether a Business Enterprise is Subject to a Workforce Reduction Under Recent Executive Orders" as amended by Executive Order 202.8, for as long as such Executive Order or amended Executive Orders are in effect. This "pause" also includes support for non-emergency construction projects including but not limited to site support. If you have a question about the applicability of this direction in connection with your SCA contract, please reach out to Stacey Tyson, Senior Director of Contract Administration and Contractor Qualification, via email. Please put CONTRACT QUESTION in the subject line so that we can address or route your questions more quickly. Stacey is also reachable via phone at 718-472-8234, but email is preferred.

Given the uncertainty of the working environment right now, our quickest and most efficient way to disseminate information in this regard going forward will be via the SCA's website or via mass distributions such as this. Please continue to monitor both the website and your email regularly. SCA Construction Management will also be directing construction contractors with regard to safely and efficiently closing down their respective non-Emergency projects while acting in accordance with the terms of their contracts; those contractors will be receiving additional guidance shortly.

Please note that many other areas of the SCA are operational. Our staff are teleworking and are able to maintain current workflows from home in all regards. As such, please continue to transact business remotely, in accordance with your contract terms, while
 complying with all applicable laws, rules and regulations. This includes monitoring your pre-qualification status and providing services that support SCA operations remotely.

All firms must continue to comply with the guidance and directives for maintaining a clean and safe work environment issued by the New York State Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For additional questions our Contracts Hotline (718-472-8230), our Business Development Hotline (718-472-8899), and our Pre-Qualification Hotline (718-472-8777) are fully staffed. We appreciate the work that our hundreds of contractors, consultants and vendors perform under these unprecedented conditions.



3/20/20

The SCA is forgoing the requirement for original signatures AND notary attestation if the document in question is delivered from a business-related email address. SCA is deeming the receipt from a company email address to be a representation as to the legitimacy of the document. With regard to pre-proposal conferences, for SCA consultants that are asked to participate in a pre-proposal meeting the meeting will absolutely be held electronically. (SCA can represent that the vast majority of our solicitations bypass this step already if the proposals speak for themselves.) As of now, for SCA pre-bid construction meetings for SCA contractors, SCA has confirmed that the buildings will be accessible and all MANDATORY meetings have becoming “STRONGLY ENCOURAGED”. The walkthrough will have SCA (or CM) representation unless we state otherwise. If SCA building access changes (or other guidance from the city is issued) SCA will decide on a case by case basis whether a meeting can be held remotely or whether SCA can share a photo inventory of the project.

(For Capacity projects SCA believes the “walkthrough” will be held remotely with a presentation from CM and the design consultant (or in-house design team).

With regard to electronic proposals, SCA is currently accepting them from ALL consultants responding to an RFP.  (Distribution of the RFP was already electronic). SCA reached out to the Mayor’s Office of Contracts and confirmed that we can accept electronic signatures on the Doing Business Data form during this time.  All other elements of the package are driven by SCA operating guidelines and SCA is accepting electronic signatures across the board.

With regard to electronic bids on the construction side, however, SCA will advise as soon as possible as SCA has not yet implemented a policy with regard thereto.

One of SCA’s first inquiries when we realized where all of this was going was with regard to the requirement for original bonds and/or seals.  SCA learned that the Surety & Fidelity Association of America (SFAA) and the National Association of Surety Bond Producers (NASBP) support the electronic execution and delivery of surety bonds.  Additionally, The Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA), developed by the National Conference of Commissioners and Uniform State Laws, gives “legal standing” to electronic documents and electronic signatures – IF the parties intended to consent to electronic delivery.   SCA is in the process of implementing.

Lastly, with regard to SCA pre-qualification and re-qualification process, SCA asks that ACEC New York kindly remind members to monitor their status, as they must be current in order for SCA to issue Supplemental Agreements (which may be necessary at any given point in time).  That unit is currently fully staffed and processing (remotely) without any change in protocol on SCA’s end.

 

 

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