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If recent experience is any guide, my utility vault design
drawing projects have generated the following amount of 
"out-of-scope" overhead at the end of my design involvement:

2 hours with the fabricator explaining the particular details of
the reinforcing layout (for very large U/G water quality vaults);

2 hours with the building official representative preparing or
re-emphasizing, or checking for new loading not in the original
scope (such as "oops, what about fire trucks with 30,000# axles?"),
in the original engineering analysis report accompanying the plans;

2 hours with the field inspector, indicating that I had reviewed
all the fabricator's cut sheets, and no, I hadn't seen the site
or had a geotechnical report, I was using minimum load capacity,
that kind of thing.

And two more hours of administrative bookkeeping, letter filing,
fretting and fuming about lost billables, and so on.

That's six to eight hours average on design projects that only took
16 hours to complete. A pretty stiff "hit" to the ol' A/E overhead!
And like most 'old-timers', I just say "Aw, shucks" and take it
out on the next project for the client. Who wants dangling A/R's?

At 09:46 PM 8/17/97 -0700, you wrote:
>I recently have added the following language, or something similar, to
>agreements and have had no negative feed back regarding.
>"Any structurally related omissions disclosed during the plan check
>review process will be addressed within the terms of the above fee
>schedule.  Any clarifications not requiring substantive structural
>design changes will be an equally shared expense for CCC and the
>client.  There shall be a "xx"  hour accommodation for clarifications
>prior to charging for such work."
>The "xx" number of hours becomes a function of the scope of the job
>and the propensity for severity of scrutiny  I have previously
>encountered with the reviewing jurisdiction.  From my experiences in
>the Seattle, area it seems the plan checks performed by contract
>checkers are the by far the most rigorous and most time ($$)
>consuming.  For the type of work I do, "giving" 2-4 hours seems to be
>a fair amount of time.
>It can be difficult to collect when I  work with Architects who tend
>to overly blame themselves for any plan check item.   Often the
>architect will agree to jump through any hoop, however high,  and at
>no charge to the client.   Knowing I have budgeted the couple of hours
>to respond to the plan check makes that loss of billing time a little
>easier to digest.
>Mark Codispoti
>HARRISENGR(--nospam--at) wrote:
>>      I have recently noticed at the back of soil reports for my
>> projects that
>> some soil engineering firms include language that says the report
>> scope of
>> services does not include time for responses to government agency
>> comments,
>> and responses will be at additional hourly rates.    It used to be a
>> soil
>> report was never questioned here, but since the earthquake, some
>> jurisdictions have been having soil engineering consultants plan
>> check the
>> submitted soil reports.
>>      This seems appropriate to me.
>>      My standard practice has been to include building department
>> plan check
>> comment responses as part of the original fee. The problem is , some
>> jurisdictions regularly approve my plans with minor or no comments
>> while
>> others can create hours of engineering time and days of drafting
>> time (
>> $1000s).  On the other hand, I have plan checked over 5000 plans in
>> 13 years
>> as a contract plan check engineer so i know this is not unique to
>> me.
>>      I think it would be fair to follow the soil engineers and
>> charge hourly
>> for plan check comments but I can see resistance to change.
>>      I would really appreciate hearing what others are doing.
>>      Most of my work is type V and III.
>>      Thanks in advance.
>>      Tom Harris, SE
>>      Thousand Oaks, CA
Robert Marmaduke PE
POB 28995, Bellingham, WA 98228
360.738.0854 VOX/FAX