2021 ALTA/NSPS Minimum Standards – Optional Table A Items: Wetlands
With the adoption of the revised Minimum Standard Detail requirements effective February 23, 2021, there have been clarifications, definition additions and deletions within the listing of Optional Table A Items. Slight modifications have been made in Table A Items 6(a), 6(b), 11 and 18 (formerly 19). Table A Items 10b (identifying whether certain walls are plumb) and 18 (delineation of wetlands) have been eliminated completely. The elimination of these two items has resulted in former Item 10(a) to now be identified as Item 10, and former Items 19, 20 and 21 to be renumbered as 18, 19 and 20.
Within the 2021 revision the most notable change has been the deletion of former Table A Item 18, the delineation of wetlands on the surveyed property. The joint committee of ALTA/NSPS made the decision to delete this as a standard option as it is unrelated to title issues and became a confusing issue between the surveyor and the client’s expectations. The actual delineation of a wetland is not within the realm of a surveyor’s expertise. To determine whether there are wetlands within a property boundary, a wetland specialist and/or an environmental engineer needs to be retained to study the soil and plant life on the property to determine whether the property is impacted. The original intent of former Item 18 was for the client to hire a specialist to do this study and set wetland delineation markings followed by the surveyor observing and noting the location of these markings.
Under the 2016 standards, transaction parties would request the inclusion of former Table A Item 18 and surveys would frequently be delivered with notations from the surveyor stating: “at the time of survey no wetland delineation markings were observed”. This presented a question as to whether the surveyor provided such a note because there were no wetlands on the property or because no study was performed? The answer is not the surveyor’s call leading to confusion. When included, the client had to provide coordination between the wetland specialist and the surveyor and often this did not occur.
Per the Minimum Standard Detail Requirements in Section 5. G, surveyors will continue to report any water feature on, running through or within five feet of the boundary line observed in the process of conducting the field work that could possibly indicate a wetland restriction. Determining whether a water feature is subject to a wetland restriction is not a matter of survey.
If these wetland matters need to be addressed on the survey, they can still be included by negotiating a definition under blank Table A Item 20. As a definition would need to be negotiated between the client and the surveyor, a clearer outline of each party’s responsibilities and expectations could be determined to satisfy the client’s need and the surveyor’s limitations.
Construction Scheduling: Tips for Avoiding Delay Claims
When embarking on a construction project, teams need to plan the work and work the plan. Though the advice is simple it can become anything but simple when dealing with the wide-ranging challenges present in today’s design and construction industry.
The importance of planning and scheduling is crucial to the project as it serves as a proactive management tool from point of beginning to completion. There is no way to short-cut the process and come out successful on the other side as disputes can quickly arise if teams fail to deliver on agreed requirements and expectations, often resulting in delay claims.
The solution comes in making sure the fundamentals are covered at the onset of a project. Here are some easy tips to follow:
- Contractually set stakeholder expectations with the development and implementation of a comprehensive scheduling specification. Conformance to this specification must be monitored on a routine basis throughout the project to ensure sustained accountability.
- Collaborate on the preparation, review, and timely acceptance by the team of the baseline schedule including coding, logic, labor resources and cost loading.
- Establish a minimum number of monthly schedule updates that conform to contractual requirements and present a schedule narrative that includes an overview of all logic changes to the schedule.
- Assign an objective project stakeholder to perform routine schedule analysis and assessment metrics that ensure full transparency to schedule management and execution performance.
- Perform a quality Time-Impact-Analysis (TIA) as required when potential deviations or delays arise to support a proactive decision-making process that circumvents costly disputes.
As with all things it is difficult to anticipate the unexpected, but a project team can do its best to prepare for project disruptions by putting in the proper planning time on the front end to lessen the impact of surprises on the process thus saving them from unwanted delay claims.
Are you planning a new construction project or renovation? The NV5 Program Management Team can help. To learn more to contact Mark Seifried, Managing Director for NV5 at 440-809-8418 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit our website at www.nv5.com/services/program-management.
NV5/BOCK & CLARK NEWS & UPCOMING EVENTS:
- If your company or organization is interested in a presentation on the topic of the NEW 2021 ALTA/NSPS Land Title Survey Requirements, please contact Jim Brown at email@example.com
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