ACEC-NH/NHDOT CQI Committee Meeting Minutes

Meeting Minutes for December 18, 2020

Meeting Location: NHDOT Commissioner’s Conference Room
Day/Time: Friday (1:00 pm – 2:30 pm)

In Attendance:
Bill Oldenburg, NHDOT (Chair)
Mike Long, MJ (Scribe)
Ted Kitsis, NHDOT
Alex Koutroubas, ACEC
Darren Blood, GM2
Marty Kennedy, VHB
Loretta Girard Doughty, NHDOT
Chris Mulleavey, HTA

Unable to Attend:

Jim Marshall, NHDOT
CR Willeke, NHDOT
Rob Faulkner, CHA
Michelle Marshall, FHWA


  1. Meeting Minutes: The meeting minutes from the last meeting were accepted.
  2. Assigned Scribe for Meeting: Mike Long
  3. Topics for Discussion:
    • Escalation Rate
      • Further discussion was held regarding the establishment of an escalation rate on
        consultant salaries for next year. ACEC provided data accumulated from 27 firms
        (almost all have current contracts with NHDOT). Information was provided to
        Alex anonymously and the average salary increase from 2019 to 2020 was
        approximately 3.5%. Last year’s rate was taken from US Bureau of Labor
        Statistics Data which seems somewhat coarse and not entirely reflective of our
        industry, especially in southern New Hampshire as it is influenced by the Boston
        market. Using that data again would provide a rate of 2.25%. Bill suggested
        using that rate plus 1% and after some additional discussion it was agreed that he
        would propose that to the front office for approval.
    • Sub-Consultant Self-Certification Form
      • Bill asked if this form, which requires subconsultants to certify as to whether they
        are required to have an indirect cost rate (audited overhead rate) review based on
        the current contract value, could be moved along for possible implementation.
        ACEC’s concerns had been expressed in the previous meeting and through email concerning when a contract is actually complete for a subconsultant. With that in
        mind, Bill will move the form along for any additional internal Department
        comment and implementation.
    • Winter Conference
      • There will be no winter conference as in past years. Instead, a town hall type
        forum will be held with the Commissioner will be arranged, sometime around the
        middle of January.
    • April Technical Transfer
      • The Technical Conference will still be held in 2021, but it is being planned as a
        virtual conference due to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. The conference
        sub-committee is going forward with a plan to do it over a five day period with
        presentations each day. The technology on how to do this with a large audience
        has been discussed with SNHU. More to come on this in the near future.
    • Committees
      • Contracts – The committee is making progress on a standard scope of
        work and in fact, a standard for environmental assignments is very close to
        completion. Christine Perron from MJ provided McFarland Johnson’s
        “standard” and this was used as an initial template. The committee met
        and reinvigorated the process in other areas.
      • Bridge – No meetings recently, although Loretta noted that the
        Design/Build Manual has been reviewed and is almost complete and ready
        for publication.
      • Highway – Jim was not present today, but it was noted that a meeting was
        held recently and that the minutes from that and other meetings have been
        posted to the website.
      • LPA – CR was out and there was no update in this area.
  4. Other Items: No other items were discussed.
  5. Next Meeting – January 15, 2021