Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) has updated its guidance for businesses trying to ascertain what they can and cannot do in the present crisis. Here is the link to DCED’s FAQ page – https://www.scribd.com/document/452553495/UPDATED-2-00pm-March-24-2020-Life-Sustaining-Business-FAQs. All those in the residential construction field will want to pay particular attention to Section 19, which responds to the question “May I complete my customer’s residential construction project?”
While every builder and contractor will need to exercise their own best judgment based on the unique nature of their individual jobsites, this answer finally gives some authoritative guidance for what you can do even if you do not have an approved waiver. In all cases, contractors should employ the latest social distancing and COVID-safe work practices. You may also wish to consult your legal counsel regarding specific jobsite questions.
We understand that this latest guidance still leaves a host of unanswered questions. Nevertheless, it grants more assurance than we had previously regarding abandoned jobsites. To be on the safe side, we encourage all those who do not have waiver approvals from DCED to continue pursuing that option. Here is the link – https://expressforms.pa.gov/apps/pa/DCED/Waiver-process-keeping-physical-locations-open.
Regardless of whether you have a waiver, you should have a copy of the latest DCED guidance readily available in case law enforcement tries to keep you from worksites where the latest guidance allows you to work. Individual law enforcement agencies and/or officers may be unaware of this update. Those with waiver approvals would be wise to distribute copies to all employees, subcontractors, suppliers and local municipalities. As the commercial says, “don’t leave home without it.”
PBA continues to seek further guidance and clarification regarding the Governor’s Order. As we learn more, we will do our best to share it with you. Thank you all for your support.