Coming next: Becon investigation. Court suits, sex harassment, safety hazards

The Contractors’ Critic is gathering extensive data and other information on Becon Construction. We take a close look at their ongoing big job at the Motiva Refinery. Stay tuned!!!

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The Troubled History of Ivey Mechanical

Ivey Mechanical currently enjoys one of the largest commercial construction businesses in the southeastern United States. If you look at Ivey Mechanical’s web site, you might think that the company has enjoyed several unbroken decades of success, beginning with its 1947 start-up in Mississippi.

The company grew from a small Mississippi contractor by picking up military and other government work, and became one,of the largest mechanical contractors in the country with over $140 million annual business in the nineties, and “briefly became part” of the consolidations in the mechanical contracting industry, before “acquiring itself” in 2003.

Now the Contractors’ Critic brings you the real story. Ivey’s own version of its history neglects to mention its role in the disastrous bankruptcies of Encompass, Ivey’s parent company that left projects half-built, and left equipment suppliers with unpaid bills of countless millions of dollars.

During the declining days of Ivey’s affiliation with Encompass, OSHA issued several serious citations and proposed thousands of dollars in fines against Ivey/Encompass. Soon after Ivey emerged from the Encompass bankruptcy, Ivey began aggressively filing court suits against some of its clients and others, to collect minor debts, according to court documents.

Download the full report (PDF):

Ivey Mechanical #1 Final 8-28-11 (4)

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WELCOME TO THE CONTRACTORS’ CRITIC

 

During the last four decades, the construction industry has changed from a cooperative family of customers, contractors, workers, and unions, into a bitter struggle in which the low bid rules, and wages and construction quality suffer. Litigation, liens, faulty projects, and worker injuries are all threatening our industry’s future.

In this atmosphere, the industry deserves a closer look at the records of the contractors that have risen to the top.  The Contractors’ Critic will  provide the evidence you cannot find anywhere else; the court cases, liens, OSHA citations, and other data on contractors, and let you decide.

The Critic views court cases and liens as a plague on our construction industry. Contractors, employees and their organizations, and customers should be working together and settling their differences outside of the court house. But the trend in our industry is towards more court suits, not less. As the Engineering News Report has editorialized:

“If your only tool is a hammer, then every problem will look like a nail. When it comes to the construction industry, the main dispute resolution tool remains a lawyer, and every disagreement will look like a lawsuit. Lawsuits go against the basic nature of the industry. Construction is not an individual endeavor, but rather a business of team building. Successful teams and projects are built on the strengths of each member, while lawsuits and unsuccessful projects are founded on the weaknesses of team members. A decade or more may pass before there is any resolution of a dispute by the courts leaving no one a winner. Some industry sources claim the tide of dispute resolution may be turning back towards the courts. This may indicate that the construction industry has become too complacent to combat creeping litigiousness.”

The Critic could not agree more with this ENR editorial. These are the reasons why the Critic devotes its resources to researching and publishing details on litigation and liens in the construction industry. The Critic feels that the sheer numbers and the types of these lawsuits should be of grave concern to every contractor and construction customer.

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