January 21, 2022
Peter Moore, P.E., F.ASCE, FACEC
President, Chen Moore and Associates
Last week: Last week, while I was in Tallahassee, there was an addition to a relatively simple bill that essentially does away with personal liability protection for design professionals in construction projects. This is a provision that the design community worked for years to get into place after a court case considered this for the first time about 15 years ago. Every design professional works for a business with much deeper pockets than any individual, and if this provision isn’t killed, it will make getting people to enter this profession, which is already in need, much more difficult and will slow all construction.
Looking ahead: There are a series of bills related to the Surfside tragedy that will be considered over the next couple weeks. Many are backed by leadership, so they will flow through the committees and floor votes easily. Hopefully, this will bring clarity to a situation that has had as many opinions as condo units that were lost. While the situation was absolutely tragic, there needs to be a measured response for new construction and inspection of existing buildings. Annual inspections, destructive testing or other extreme measures aren’t in anyone’s best interests.