From the office of Chris May, State Representative District 65
Supply chain issues continue to affect a range of industries, including construction, and it's taking a toll on public works projects. With a lack of materials, some suppliers are demanding down payments for essential components like steel and current law is presenting an unexpected roadblock. This session, I'm working on legislation to help. Unfortunately, Indiana law restricts local governments from paying for building materials before they're delivered. This restriction can also make it more difficult to hire contractors who can't always absorb these costs and wait for payment until after a project is done. As a result, smaller contractors can be priced out of bidding for public works projects, and local governments could be forced to hire contractors with higher bids, potentially resulting in wasted tax dollars.
This session, I sponsored Senate Bill 317, which would enable municipalities to make advance payments to contractors so they can buy needed materials for public works projects. This legislation would allow smaller, local contractors to bid on public works projects without forcing them to assume all the costs upfront. Public works projects contribute to the vitality of our communities. Local governments should not be unnecessarily hindered when investing in this essential infrastructure. To follow this and other legislation through the process, and watch session, visit iga.in.gov.