SIO Awards


Jennifer
Mark RichardsonNASBP Is Pleased to Announce the 2016 Surety Information Office Awards

Platinum Award

Jennifer Grenrood and Mark Richardson (both pictured here) of the NASBP Member firm of Pinnacle Surety Services in Costa Mesa, CA, received the Surety Information Office (SIO) Platinum Award for facilitating a policy change with the Ada County Highway District (ACHD). This change will permit qualifying developers to use surety bonds for the first time in decades when constructing road and storm water systems in their developments. It will result in saving developers thousands of dollars and increase development. The ACHD will also benefit from increased impact fees associated with this change.

The Platinum Award recognizes efforts to promote contract surety bonds, which significantly impacted the surety industry.

Gold Award

The Surety Underwriters Association of Southern California, Florida Surety Association, and Rocky Mountain Surety Association received the Gold Award. These Local Surety Associations (LSAs) conducted educational seminars for disadvantaged and disabled veteran contractors, spoke at construction summits, and even influenced an ENR top 400 consulting firm to implement a subcontractor bond requirement process.

Surety Underwriters Association of Southern California 
The SUASC performed numerous activities to qualify for a Gold Award. The members presented bond assistance program workshops for small contractors in Fresno and San Diego, a Basics of Bonding course at the SBA’s 6th Annual 8(a) and Small Business Conference and at the Flatiron-Skanksa-Stacy JV I-5 North Coast Corridor Subcontractor Conference. Members gave workshops on The Fundamentals of Bonding & Managing Cash Flow for the DOT and California Asian Chamber of Commerce in Bakersfield, California, and as a Clark Construction Subcontractor course. A member presented at the Idaho Society of Engineers Annual meeting and assisted Ada County Highway District of Idaho in a policy change for the acceptance of surety bonds. Multiple educational seminars were conducted throughout the year for a variety of audiences, including small, emerging, and disadvantaged contractors, subcontractors, and disabled veterans.

Florida Surety Association
The FSA performed numerous activities to qualify for a Gold Award. The members presented at several workshops aimed at small, emerging and disadvantaged contractors, including a four-month series of FDOT Bonding workshops located in Tampa, Sarasota, Pensacola, Orlando, Jacksonville and Miami. Other workshops included: the Basics on Bonding held at the City of St. Petersburg Small Business Enterprise, the Orange County Public Schools and the Central Florida Chapter–National Institute of Government Purchasing. A member was the key speaker on a panel discussing the benefits of bonding at the Marcum Construction Summit. Educational and risk management presentations, along with bonding workshops, were given throughout the state.

Rocky Mountain Surety Association
The RMSA performed numerous activities to qualify for a Gold Award. The members promoted subcontract bonding as a way to mitigate risk, which resulted in an ENR top 400 construction firm implementing a subcontract bond requirement process. Other presentations were given to construction companies and contractors on the importance of subcontractor bonding, also resulting in implementation of subcontract bond requirements. The RMSA persuaded the Interstate Oil and Gas Commission to review its regulatory requirements for all states, rather than waiving the bond requirements. A bonding verification checklist was developed for Jefferson County to help reduce future risks. Following a presentation to Vectra Bank, the bank decided to require bonds as a loan condition in order to better protect itself. Several workshops were conducted for small and emerging contractors at the Procurement Technical Assistance Center and Colorado DOT.

The Gold award recognizes a LSA for conducting at least ten and five public relations and educational activities, respectively, in a calendar year to promote the use of contract surety bonds in construction to non-surety audiences.

Silver Award

The Silver Award was presented to the Carolinas Surety Association, the Surety Association of Indiana, and the Surety Association of Ohio. These associations conducted live and web presentations to small and emerging contractors on how to pursue bonding, advocated for bonding issues with their state governments and discussed the basics of surety at the Department of Transportation’s BEP program–to name a few of their accomplishments.

Carolinas Surety Association – The CSA conducted both live and web presentations across 30 locations for an ENR top 400 contractor on the basics of bonding, subcontractor bonding and handling the claims process. Presentations were given to small, emerging and set-aside contractors on surety basics and how to pursue federal procurement work at the Richland County Small Local Businesses Enterprises Program and Southeast Region FEDCON Summit in Wilmington, NC. Members also served on panels to promote surety-preferred forms for the Charleston Chapter of the American Subcontractors Association.

Surety Association of Indiana – The SAI presented a bonding basics course at the 8th Annual Division of Supplier Diversity Business Conference, copresented an introduction to banking and bonding with Wintrust Bank at the Illinois Road & Transportation Building Association of Emerging Leaders Conference, as well as an introduction to bonding for Gallagher Asphalt Corporation. The SAI worked with the NASBP and SFAA on multiple legislative issues with the Indiana government.

Surety Association of Ohio -- The SAO presented at a USDOT/SFAA Bonding Education Program in Pittsburg, as well as the USDOT/SFAA Bonding Education Program in Chicago to discuss the basics of surety. A member was a panelist at the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s 30th Annual DBE Workshop & Secretary’s Golden Shovel Awards to discuss the merits of surety and assist members of the audience with the surety process. A presentation to contractors in conjunction with a law firm focused on aspects such as reviewed contracts, protecting and/or defending claim rights, bonding and bonding capacity in Sandusky, Ohio. Members also gave presentations on bonding for the Airport Minority Advisory Council, Columbus Contractors Network and the Michigan Department of Transportation.

The Silver award also recognizes a LSA for conducting at least ten and five public relations and educational activities, respectively, in a calendar year to promote the use of contract surety bonds in construction to non-surety audiences.


Advocacy Award
The Advocacy Award was given to the Florida Surety Association, the Surety Association of Kansas City and the Surety Association of Ohio. These associations were active in writing letters to legislators, hosting lobby days and in making local lawmakers aware of how certain contract provisions hurt contractors and sureties.


Florida Surety Association – The FSA members, once again, were extremely active in surety bond advocacy, writing several letters in response to surety-related issues in counties, cities, towns and districts throughout the state. Members met in Tallahassee for FSA’s annual Legislative Day at the Capitol and participated in the SFAA’s Congressional Action Day by visiting Florida legislators.

Surety Association of Kansas City – The SAKC successfully advocated for changes to the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District’s actual damage clause. Members worked with the Heavy Contractors Association to help the City of Kansas City, Missouri, understand how new contract provisions were detrimental to contractors and sureties.

Surety Association of Ohio – Several SAO members were involved in numerous meetings and hearings on legislative matters in the state, particularly with the Cuyahoga County Council.

The Advocacy Award is presented to LSAs that conduct significant activities advocating for suretyship, such as fighting legislative efforts to waive bonds or increase bond thresholds, or advocating for reasonable bond forms.

The NASBP, SFAA, and SIO would like to congratulate all of this year’s winners and to remind all local sureties to continue to catalog their advocacy and promotional activities for 2017.

The Surety Information Office (SIO), formed in 1993, disseminates information about the benefits of contract and other forms of surety bonding in private and public construction. SIO, a virtual office, is supported by the National Association of Surety Bond Producers (NASBP), www.nasbp.org, and The Surety & Fidelity Association of America (SFAA), www.surety.org. For information on the benefits of surety bonds in construction and in other contexts, visit www.sio.org or contact SIO at sio@sio.org.