From the Ground Up

Your legal source for development news

Design-build is increasingly showing up in public works projects in the Washington State. This method allows the price to be established based on a conceptual design rather than through the competitive bid process. Offsetting the lack of competitive bid, the price can be set after construction documents are completed and all the subcontracts work can be put out for bid. Design-build has unique challenges. It leads to fundamental changes in the relationships between owners, designers…
Miller Nash partner Jacob Zahniser had an article published in the Oregon State Bar Construction Law Section’s Construction Law Newsletter concerning little-discussed elements of construction contracts. The link to the full story is available below. Do not underestimate forum-selection and choice-of-law clauses when coupled with an arbitration provision; ORS 701.640 may not apply and your client may find itself arbitrating claims far from the project under unfamiliar and unfriendly law. Click here to read the full
On March 20, 2019, the Oregon Court of Appeals affirmed the Land Use Board of Appeals (“LUBA”) in a decision interpreting ORS 197.307(4), which is the “clear and objective” requirement of the ORS 197.295-.314 needed housing statutes. Warren v. Washington County helps ensure that the Portland metro region and other cities in Oregon can meet goals for the provision of new housing. Housing has been a critical issue in Oregon, especially since the recovery from the…
David Brandon and Olivia Grabacki published an op-ed in a recent issue of the Daily Journal of Commerce. The article discusses the differing benefits between 1031 Exchanges and Qualified Opportunity Zones for real estate investments. The full article is available here (note that the full article is only available to paid subscribers).…
Section 1031 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code provides real estate investors the opportunity to sell existing real property investments, reinvest the proceeds into the acquisition of qualified, like-kind replacement property, and defer recognition of capital gains realized from the sale to a later disposition, subject to time constraints and other regulations. Such a qualified like-kind exchange, more commonly known as a “1031 Exchange,” can be beneficial to investors holding appreciated investment properties that may…
ServPro filed a single lien on a condo for water damage remediation work in the amount of $183,945.09 but did not allocate proportionally the amount of its billing among the 20 units impacted. This mistake illustrates the difficulties in getting a lien filed correctly on a condo and the consequences of doing it wrong. Pursuant to RCW 60.04.081, the condo owner filed a motion to seek to have the lien invalidated. Finding it both frivolous…
On January 11, the United States Supreme Court announced it accepted the Food Marketing Institute’s cert petition to review the Eighth Circuit’s decision in Food Marketing Institute v. Argus Leader Media, representing the latest development toward resolving a conundrum we have described before—how to protect confidential and trade secret information provided to the government in light of public disclosure laws. This will be an important case for government contractors—and anyone else providing information to…
Speaking today at a seminar sponsored by the University of Oregon, Senator Michael Dembrow and Representative Karin Power stated that they intend to introduce cap and invest legislation by the end of this month. The system is aligned with the Western Climate Initiative, the members of which include California and Quebec. The general idea is to set a limit on carbon emissions from certain sectors of the economy, including power generation and transportation. Regulated entities in…
California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, otherwise known as Proposition 65, continues to be amended to address errors and omissions in the original regulations. Proposition 65 applies to all businesses in the chain of commerce in California and requires all businesses to provide a “clear and reasonable” warning before knowingly and intentionally exposing any individual in California to one of nearly 1,000 listed chemicals. While Proposition 65 has been on the…