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Day 1 - Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Registration and Breakfast
Opening Remarks from the Co-Chairs

Leanna Olson
Senior Legal Counsel
Bantrel Co.

Paul Ryzuk
Miller Thomson LLP


Nathan Neudorf
Minister of Infrastructure
Government of Alberta

Making the Best of a Bad Situation: Winning Solutions to Supply Chain Disruption and Price Escalation

Robby Sohi
Senior Counsel

Bryan G. West
McCarthy Tetrault LLP

Brent Willett
Interim President and CEO
Supply Chain Canada, Alberta Institute

The COVID-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine have caused significant disruptions to supply chains and have raised required spend in an unprecedented manner. With the future still uncertain, solicitors, contractors, and owners must be creative with their risk mitigation solutions. In this session, topics of discussion will include:

  • Considering contractual relief provisions beyond the traditional force majeure to mitigate risks
  • Rethinking Guaranteed Maximum Price and other similar contracts in light of increasing and fluctuating prices
  • Lessons learned from recent case law on the issues of supply chain disruption and price escalation
    • Considering strategies to argue entitlement and applicable laws
  • Extrapolating the lessons learned for future planning

Networking Break
Moving Towards Collaborative Delivery Models: A Shift in How Construction Does Business?

Jen Hancock
Vice President, Collaborative Construction
Chandos Construction

Ryan Jolly
Manager, Project Excellence
TC Energy

Brian Maksymetz, P. Eng.

Craig Webber
Architect and President
Integrated Project Delivery Alliance

Selecting the right construction contract model for a particular project can be the difference between harmony and discord among project participants. More importantly, it can be the difference between the financial success and failure of the project. In recent years, the construction industry has witnessed the introduction of alternative delivery models: the Integrated Project Delivery Model (IPD) and collaborative delivery models. These project delivery models adapt to the realities of a changing marketplace by bringing all parties to the table early on to collaboratively manage their respective risks. In this session, topics of discussion will include:

  • Understanding the features of the Integrated Project Delivery and Collaborative contracts
  • Contrasting the collaborative models with the traditional, non-collaborative models
    • Analyzing the pros and cons of each to determine which projects are right for a collaborative delivery model
  • Understanding how the front end work that should be completed prior to entering into the contract can significantly mitigate future risks
  • 12:15
    Networking Lunch
    Mitigating Health and Safety Risks: Building a New Standard of Construction Safety

    Christopher Spasoff
    Founder & OH&S Lawyer
    F2 Legal Counsel

    Federal statistics show that the incidence rates of nonfatal injuries and illnesses are down significantly from 20 years ago. The fatal injury rate, however, remains high, and so improving health and safety on the construction site should remain a top focus for the industry. Moreover, since sweeping changes to Alberta’s occupational and health and safety legislation came into force on December 1, 2021, this timely session will review the changes applicable to the construction industry. Topics of discussion will include:

    • Understanding the reporting obligations under the updated Occupational Health and Safety Code
    • Appreciating the benefits of providing training to employees and how to develop a health and safety program
      • Learning the benefits of obtaining COR and SECOR
    • Learning the different situations where workers have the right to refuse work
    • Avoiding the risk of liability by knowing when the prime contractor must be present on site, and when they can delegate responsibility

    Networking Break
    Industry Pulse: How Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Frameworks Work to Your Advantage

    Prabhjit (Prabh) K. Banga
    Director, Sustainability
    AECON Group Inc

    ESG is more than just a buzzword – capital assets in Alberta will need to be constructed to withstand decades of use, change, and exposure to weather extremes. Integrating resiliency and sustainability into all public capital assets will help build future-focused infrastructure, guard against risks presented by floods and wildfires, and support positive environmental change through sustainable materials, lower emissions, and more efficient energy use. Construction and engineering firms can help maximize ESG goal setting and reporting to become industry leaders.

    • Understanding the core pillars of environmental, social and governance and integrating ESG into business strategy
    • Knowing the standards to follow, what to measure and which metrics to compile when developing and implementing ESG goals
    • Effectively instituting ESG reporting mechanisms and considering the benefits of a standalone ESG annual report

    Addressing Diverse and Evolving Needs: Developing and Maximizing Indigenous Partnerships

    Byng Giraud
    Sedgwick Strategies Inc

    Sharon G.K. Singh
    Co-Head, Aboriginal Law Practice
    Bennett Jones LLP

    Matthew Foss
    VP, Research & Public Policy
    Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business

    Ifeoma M. Okoye
    Ackroyd LLP

    The concept of “going it alone” on major capital projects is undesirable and, in many cases, financially infeasible. Leveraging the wide range of expertise, knowledge, and infrastructure from Indigenous partners across sectors encourages innovation and appropriate risk sharing, ultimately leading to better outcomes. Moreover, owners and service providers are increasingly requiring collaboration with Indigenous peoples. In this session, topics of discussion will include:

    • Going beyond consultation and towards collaboration, including joint ventures and other economic participation opportunities
      • Building and nurturing Indigenous relationships to optimize construction opportunities
    • Reviewing the provincial and federal grants available to Indigenous-owned construction projects and companies
    • Protecting yourself through a review of the lesser-known legal obligations for construction projects on Indigenous land

    Conference Adjourns

    Day 2 - Thursday, January 26, 2023

    Registration and Breakfast
    Opening Remarks from the Co-Chairs

    Barrie Marshall
    Former Director
    ADR Institute of Alberta

    Six Months into a New Era: Status Update on Alberta’s Prompt Payment and Adjudication Legislation

    Shaun W. Hohman
    Rose LLP

    William J. Kenny
    Barrister & Solicitor
    Kenny Law

    Terry Milot
    Executive Vice-President
    Chemco Electrical Contractors

    In August 2022, the long-awaited and highly anticipated Prompt Payment and Construction Lien Forms Regulation and a Prompt Payment and Adjudication Regulation came into force. The new regime was based off the scheme implemented several years ago in Ontario. Six months in, how is this regime being used, and what is the industry response? In this session, topics of discussion will include:

    • Reviewing the timelines and features of the prompt payment regime
    • Understanding what types of claims may be eligible for adjudication
    • Navigating the growing pains of having some contracts fall under the new regime and older contracts not eligible for the regime
    • Lessons learned from Ontario (but maybe by Jan there will be enough within AB to learn from, so revisit this)
    • Comparing adjudication to other forms of dispute resolution and how it works with other dispute resolution mechanisms in the contract

    Networking Break
    Successfully Litigating Delay and Impact Claims

    Tristen Pomerance
    Legal Counsel

    Adrianna Worman
    Goodfellow & Schuettlaw

    Disputes over delays can threaten the viability of your project while causing financial and reputational harm should your organization be found liable. Whether you are an owner or a contractor, a plaintiff or a defendant, equip yourself with the knowledge needed to effectively present or defend such a claim. Topics will include:

    • Establishing the causes of delay and corresponding responsibility
    • Proving legal entitlement to compensation
    • Identifying recoverable losses
    • Discerning the limits to liability imposed by the prevention principle
    • Contractual terms to consider: notice, changes, liquidated damages, liability caps and exclusions
    • How to best employ delay and quantification experts

    Networking Lunch
    Construction Insurance: Going Beyond the Basics to Maximize Protection

    Colin Hasick, CRM
    Vice President, Construction Team Leader – Corporate
    Marsh Canada Limited

    Glen Anderson
    VP Finance & Commercial Risk
    PCL Construction

    Dennis L. Picco, Q.C.

    Whether you are contractor, owner, or subcontractor, there are many different types of construction insurance coverage available to help you manage risk, beyond the minimums required by law. Learning how to customize your construction liability insurance policy will give you an advantage when it comes to mitigating the risks that come with construction projects. In this session, topics of discussion include:

    • Reviewing the various insurance and bond options available for mitigating specific risks in construction
    • Understanding the interplay between insurance, limitations of liability and waiver of subrogation
    • Determining the right level of coverage and customizing your construction liability insurance policy
    • Learning the best strategies for responding to insurance claims and limiting your liability

    Networking Break
    Bidding and Procurement: Common and Contemporary Landmines for the Construction Industry

    Glenn Cyrankiewicz
    Chief Executive Officer, Principal
    Delnor Construction

    Bert DeBruin, CME
    CEO, Business Development
    AltaPro Electric Ltd

    Terri Gosine
    Director Integrated Infrastructure Services
    Edmonton Public School Board

    The Canadian Government is one of the largest public buyers of goods and services in Canada, spending approximately $22 billion annually on behalf of federal departments and agencies. The competitive procurement process aims to get the best value for Canadians while enhancing access, competition and fairness. However, the bidding process is rife with presumptions and implied terms that can lead to unforeseen and unwanted consequences if not prevented or properly mitigated. In this session, topics of discussion include:

    • Navigating the differing definitions of what constitutes the commencement of the procurement process
    • Understanding when and how a response to tender may create a contract to avoid liability you are not prepared for
    • Analyzing the Owner’s duty of “fairness” in bidding
      • Managing allegations of bid shopping and addressing the impact of bid shopping on the industry
      • Understanding exclusion clauses and your rights when the owner breaches their obligation of fairness
    • Understanding the advantages and disadvantages that come with naming the subtrades in bids

    Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Solving Canada’s Skilled Labour Shortage

    Bill Ferreira
    Executive Director
    BuildForce Canada

    Seema Lal
    Clyde & Co Canada LLP

    Terry Parker
    Executive Director
    Building Trades of Alberta

    The shortage of skilled labour in construction is a pressing concern to the industry and to the economic well-being of Alberta and Canada as a whole. Ongoing challenges include attracting the younger demographic to trades, and the aging demographic in construction may be missing the skills needed to keep pace with the increase of technology in traditional industries. Indeed, satisfying a community benefit quota with untrained but eligible workers is setting yourself up for failure. Now more than ever the industry must come together to enroll and train the next generation for the benefit of all. In this session, topics of discussion will include:

    • Strategies to encourage youths to enroll in trades
    • Making space for women and Indigenous construction workers
    • Updating company policies and corporate culture to foster diversity, equity and inclusion

    Conference Ends