“It comes as no surprise that payment issues continue to get a great deal of attention,” said Karen Krause, president of Searls Air Conditioning and chair of the Air Conditioning Contractors of Arizona’s Government Relations Committee. “The payment system that exists in construction takes gross advantage of subcontractors. Slow payment makes us financiers.”
Prompt pay was tops in last year’s survey as well. In the 1999 legislative session, Air Conditioning Contractors of Arizona and its lobbying group, the Arizona SubContractors Coalition, worked on a prompt payment bill. Technical revisions and a host of last-minute problems prevented the bill from going to the floor for a final vote in the early hours of the last day of the session, though.
“With a new session starting, we are laying plans to push the prompt payment bill all the way through this year,” commented Krause. The bill will be titled “Contractor’s Right to Know” (instead of “Construction Contracts; Payment Bill” which was the title of the 1999 bill) and will address the following:
“We came very close last year to accomplishing this much-needed reform. With all the support we garnered in that effort, we are hopeful that 2000 will be the year,” said Carol Goguen, executive director of the Air Conditioning Contractors of Arizona.
“We expect challenges, though, and need help from the industry. Contractors can show their support by joining the Arizona SubContractors Coalition — dues money goes straight to the lobbying effort. Volunteering to be part of our grassroots network is also key — a call or a letter to a legislator at the right time can make or break our effort.”
For more information on joining the coalition or becoming a grassroots supporter, call 602-242-6336.