Virginia State Bar

An agency of the Supreme Court of Virginia

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Construction Law & Public Contracts

A Section of the Virginia State Bar.

Meeting Minutes - April 17, 2013

Minutes of the Virginia State Bar
Construction Law & Public Contracts Section
Board of Governors

I. Call to Order – 12:00 PM.  Present on call: Brett Marston (Chair), Sean Howley (Vice Chair), Shannon Briglia (Treasurer), Chris Hill, Scott Kowalski, Christopher Boynton, Steve Test, Spencer Wiegard, Dan Fitch, J. Barrett Lucy, Jennifer Mahar, Randy Wintory and Blair Lonergan (VA CLE).  Absent:  Mike Branca (Secretary), Kristan Burch (Immediate Past Chair), Hobie Andrews, Hanna Blake, Mark Crawford, Hon. Robert Ballou, Hon. Robert M.D. Turk, Hon. J. Overton Harris, and Dolly Shaffer (VSB).

II. Approval of Minutes from January  16, 2013 meeting - Minutes were unanimously approved.

III. 2013 Membership/Financial Report -  Shannon Briglia reported that Section membership increased by 33 from the last report.  Financially the Section is on track with its 2012-13 budget, including the reallocated $2,750 in current year funds for the Handbook upgrade project.  The Section budget for 2013-14 was submitted in February and included increased budgeting for Fall Program scholarships (an increase to $150 from $100 for each of the 10 scholarships) as well as a contingency of $600 for the Handbook project.

Sean Howley reported on the ADR membership program in March held at Gannett’s office in McLean.  Judge Stanley Klein and Brett Marston were the panelists, and Sean Howley moderated the program.  Attendance was in the low 30’s, which was slightly lower than expected, but the program generated 4 new Section members.  Gannett was very accommodating, providing the space free of charge. Sean suggested we aim for a similar program in Roanoke, while Brett recommended Tidewater.  Chris Boynton suggested Tidewater would be supportive of the program and recommended we target the Bankruptcy, Local Government and Construction Sections to garner attendance and interest.  Sean Howley will propose dates and locations at the June Board meeting for the next membership drive program.  Sean Howley also recognized the assistance of Alison Mullins of Rees Broome & Diaz and John Straw of Kraftson Caudle in preparing for and presenting the ADR program.

IV. Chair’s Report – Brett Marston reported that there was nothing new to report, other than that he is continually impressed with the high quality of Board volunteers which makes the Chair’s job easy.

V. Fall Seminar – Brett Marston reported on behalf of Mike Branca, Chair of the Fall Seminar Committee.  Brett outlined the program and topics developed by the Committee, and discussion ensued over potential lunch speakers.  A speaker from the Gilmerton Bridge project is tentatively on board.  It was noted that last year’s lunch speaker, Philip Shucet, was recently named VA Businessman of the Year. 

Mr. Marston reminded the Board that the program is a week later this year, November 8-9, 2013.

Blair Lonergan noted the following deadlines for the program:

June 1     Deadline for topics
July 22   VA CLE needs the full program agenda to begin marketing materials

VA CLE will handle arrangements for the reception/speaker’s dinner and will have First Time Attendee flags available for name badges.  Greg St. Ours (past Chair) will be asked to arrange the Board/Past Chairs dinner on Thursday night and Richard Smith (past Chair) will be asked to organize the golf outing for Thursday.

VI. Committee Reports

a. Handbook Committee (Scott Kowalski) –  The webmaster is working diligently on the project to add hyperlinks to the Handbook.  Scott will send an email to Board members with an “under construction” version as soon as it is available.  The work is scheduled to be complete by the end of April after which there will be some beta testing.  The non-hyperlinked version of the updated Handbook is posted on the Section’s website and will remain available for use until replaced by the hyperlinked version.  Scott and his committee (Hannah Blake and Dan Fitch) are working on assignments for updating the Handbook and will issue assignments and due dates in the near future.

b. Newsletter Committee (Jennifer Mahar and Barrett Lucy) -  The Spring Newsletter is in the final stages of completion and is expected to be published in early May.  This has been an active legislative session and a slow judicial term so the newsletter has more legislative updates than cases.  A continuing request was made for any additional cases and material / articles for future editions of the Newsletter. Articles may be as short as 3-4 pages and as long as 10 pages.  Consistent with the recent change in the format, the abbreviated Newsletter will be sent by hardcopy and the balance will be linked on the Section’s website.

c. Summer Program Committee (Chris Boynton) – Chris Boynton reported that the Summer Program is at a different time this year from prior year programs – 2:00 p.m. on June 14.  The Section is co-presenting with the Local Government Section and the topic is the series of Carnell Construction cases issued by the U.S.D.Ct. for the W.D. of VA.  Presenters include Randy Wintory, Neil Lowenstein of Vandeventer Black, Lauren McLaughlin of BrigliaMcLaughlin, PLLC and Mr. Boynton as moderator.  Mr. Boynton further reported that a dinner for the Board will be arranged again for the Thursday before the Friday program, likely at Salacia at the Hilton Hotel or perhaps at Chops Restaurant.  Mr. Boynton will investigate whether the Board business meeting will occur before the program or after.

d. Social Media (Chris Hill) – Chris Hill reported that all efforts to energize social media through the VSB are still barred.

e. Publications Committee (Randy Wintory) – Randy Wintory extended congratulations on a well done group of articles published in February in the Virginia Lawyer magazine.  In addition to Brett Marston’s Chair’s piece, articles were included by Judges Stanley P. Klein (ret.) and Arthur B. Vieregg (ret.), David Lannetti, Steve Test and Monica McCaroll, and Randy Wintory.  The photograph on the front cover of the magazine has drawn particular praise.  

f. Five Year Plan Committee – The committee includes Mike Branca, Shannon Briglia, and Mark Crawford. The current Plan is in its fourth year, and the committee is tasked with updating the Plan. Mike Branca will update the Board further in June.

g. Website  – Brett Marston reported on behalf of Kristan Burch that there is no news to report on the website.

VII. Old Business – Jennifer Mahar reported on the upcoming Joint Reception with the Maryland State Bar’s Construction Section scheduled for May 2, 2013 from 6:30-8:30 at Chima in Tysons Corner.  The alcohol is being sponsored by Baker Tilly so estimated cost to the Section for the appetizers is $250.00.  Approximately 20 attorneys have registered so far.  There was some discussion of exploring the same concept with the North Carolina Bar.

VIII. New Business – Brett Marston reported on behalf of Kristan Burch that the Nominating Committee, chaired by Ms. Burch, met and that recommendations for new officers and Board members are to be recommended and voted upon by the membership at the June 14th Board meeting.

The Meeting adjourned at 12:51 pm.

The next Meeting is scheduled for June 14th,  at 1:15 p.m.  The time of the meeting is to be confirmed after investigation of room availability.