Plans Stamping By Any Other Name Is Still illegal

Ted Noftall   8:03 PM
to Greg, City, DeptHeads, Teresa, johnmeneough, Tom, Frank, Chris, Robin
This  ever shifting  story regarding the  YMCA proposal  is  very disconcerting.
Is someone in such a hurry to cram and jam this Y project  that they are instructing you to shop  for an Architect willing to  sign and seal documents after the fact .
You should know there  is another word for such a practice.  It  is called plans stamping and it is illegal, un-ethical  and cause for a design professional to lose his license.
At the  October 7th meeting of the A&B Advisory Board I expressed  concern  about this so called ‘Design Build’ proposal being advanced.  I  asked you who at the City had the requisite experience to represent the City’s interest in a Design Build  arrangement .   You answered Flank Flagg and I would like to inquire as to the advise you have received.
Were you ever advised that a  conventional building model may be thought of as a   V   with the Owner at the apex  in privity of contract   with both a licensed  Designer and a licensed Builder at either end,    AND That   a Design Build model may be thought of as an  I  with the Owner in privity  of contract with just one entity – a  Design Builder  who must possess  both the requisite Design license  and Builders license to be Design Builder.
AND that in either a Conventional Build or in a Design Build  in order for the Owner’s interests to be properly protected the Owner must be in Privity of Contract with both a licensed Designer and a licensed Builder.
It sounds to me like the ground game that is being followed  is  something along the lines of having a builder or some other unlicensed individual  design the Y project and then have   “ an architect review the package and subsequently sign and seal  the document after the fact “    How is it possible you would not have been advised by the City Attorney and Mr. Flagg that  such a  un-ethical practice would likely be questioned,   AND how with a straight face can you say that   ‘after the RFP was released you were made aware of a requirement that an Architect had to sign and seal the proposed package’.   A design  professional be it a licensed Architect or a licensed Engineer by law has to always sign and seal all plans over a certain size.     Do you and your staff consider yourselves  above the law ???
Greg it was only a day or so that another taxpayer was questioning whether your staff understood the difference between a license and a permit  and now this.
So  what is going on here,  Who is calling the ground game,   Who prepared the RFQ,  Who reviewed the RFQ,   AND   why  on issue after issue does it appear that the City is being run by staff  not ready for prime time.
Some serious explanations are in order.
Ted Noftall

From: Kisela, Greg []
Sent: Monday, October 28, 2013 7:59 AM
To: City Council
Cc: DeptHeads; Teresa Rogers (; John Meneough ( (; Cinefro, Tom; Flagg, Frank; Barnes, Chris; Fenwick, Robin
Subject: YMCA – Design Build – Request for Proposal
To all:
We are terminating the YMCA design build request for proposal (RFP) that was released in September.  After we released the RFP we were made aware of a requirement that specified an architect had to sign and seal the proposal package.  We believed we had resolved that requirement by having an architect review the package and subsequently signing and sealing the document after the fact.  We have had a potential bidder questioning the legality of accomplishing this step after the fact.  The City Attorney’s review of the case and statutory law on this matter reveals it is unclear that we would prevail if we are challenged.  Consequently we are  terminating the RFP.
Included in the RFP was a bid alternative to repair/replace the pool deck.  To avoid an impact on the YMCA’s springtime programming they have requested we accelerate this activity.   I have directed staff  to prepare the bid package for this part of the project to be bid as quickly as possible.  The goal at this point is to bid in late November, award  at the City Council’s first meeting in January and have the work completed by March 1st.  Dollars are available in the YMCA’s R&R fund for this purpose.
At this point the YMCA  is planning to meet with the City’s Audit and Budget Board on November 11th.   I am anticipating that the Board will make a recommendation to the City  Council at this meeting.  If they do, we will agenda the item for discussion by the City Council for December 3rd.   Based on the direction from the City Council we will be prepared to  issue the design build package containing the appropriate components before the end of the year.
Greg Kisela
City Manager

One thought on “Plans Stamping By Any Other Name Is Still illegal

  • October 29, 2013 at 8:27 am

    The YMCA in 2012 prepared a schematic design and cost estimate to expand the Port Orange facility. Those renderings and documents were shared with the elected officials in late 2012 and early 2013 to start the conversation on modifying their lease. In July, the City Council referred the financial review of the YMCA to the Audit and Finance Board for their recommendation. They also authorized the release of the design build request for proposal (RFP). I tasked Public Works, specifically Frank Flagg, to finalize the design package. Mr. Flagg as a licensed general contractor has responded to many RFP’s and solicitations for design build as well as traditional bids for projects. Mr. Flagg worked with City and YMCA staff to prepare the package. Included in the package was the schematic design prepared earlier by the YMCA and other components necessary for the proposers on the RFP to submit for this project.
    After the RFP was released the City Attorney advised me that the competitive consultant negotiation act required the RFP package to be signed and sealed by a licensed architect. We retained an architect to accomplish that requirement. Subsequently we were challenged that the packaged needed to be signed and sealed before the release of the RFP and determined if was in everyone’s interest to cancel the RFP. I accept responsibility for these procedural missteps.
    If the City proceeds with an expansion or renovation of the Port Orange facility we will be in privity with a properly licensed design professional and builder. The design build team selected will prepare the necessary design documents for permitting and construction. They will be held legally accountable for meeting the codes and requirements to build or renovate the facility. Although the RFP package maybe the starting point for the plans and specifications the final documents will contain detailed design calculations necessary to permit and accomplish the project.
    Greg Kisela


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