Code Section

Public Contract Code - PCC

DIVISION 2. GENERAL PROVISIONS [1100 - 22355]

  ( Division 2 enacted by Stats. 1981, Ch. 306. )
  

PART 1. ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS [1100 - 9203]

  ( Heading of Part 1 added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 1120, Sec. 2. )
  

CHAPTER 6. Awarding of Contracts [6100 - 6615]
  ( Chapter 6 added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1230, Sec. 2. )

  
6106.5.  

(a) “State agency,” as used in this section, means those departments defined in Section 10106 of the Public Contract Code.

(b) “Contractor,” as used in this section, means “firm,” “architectural, landscape architectural, engineering, environmental, and land surveying services,” “construction project management,” and “environmental services” as defined in Section 4525 of the Government Code.

(c) State agencies shall include a provision in solicitations and in contracts, if the estimated amount to be retained exceeds ten thousand dollars ($10,000), and the retention continues for a period of 60 days beyond the completion of phased services, to permit, upon written request and the expense of the contractor, the payment of retentions earned directly to a state- or federally chartered bank in this state, as the escrow agent. The contractor may direct the investment of the payments into securities, pursuant to subdivision (d), and the contractor shall receive the interest earned on the investments. Upon satisfactory completion of the contract, the contractor shall receive from the escrow agent all securities, interest, and payments received by the escrow agent from the owner, pursuant to the terms of this section. State agencies, relative to contracts entered into prior to the enactment of this section, upon written request of the contractor, and subject to the approval of the state agency, may utilize the provisions of this section.

(d) Securities eligible for investment under this section shall include those listed in Section 16430 of the Government Code, interest-bearing demand deposit accounts, or any other investment mutually agreed to by the contractor and the state agency.

(e) (1) Any contractor who elects to receive interest on moneys withheld in retention by a state agency shall, at the request of any subcontractor, make that option available to the subcontractor regarding any moneys withheld in retention by the contractor from the subcontractor. If the contractor elects to receive interest on any moneys withheld in retention by a state agency, then the subcontractor shall receive the identical rate of interest received by the contractor on any retention moneys withheld from the subcontractor by the contractor, less any actual pro rata costs associated with administering and calculating that interest. In the event that the interest rate is a fluctuating rate, the rate for the subcontractor shall be determined by calculating the interest rate paid during the time that retentions were withheld from the subcontractor. If the contractor elects to substitute securities in lieu of retention, then, by mutual consent of the contractor and subcontractor, the subcontractor may substitute securities in exchange for the release of moneys held in retention by the contractor.

(2) This subdivision shall apply only to those subcontractors performing more than 5 percent of the contractor’s total fee.

(3) No contractor shall require any subcontractor to waive any provision of this section.

(f) An escrow agreement used pursuant to this section shall be null, void, and unenforceable unless it is substantially similar to the following form:

ESCROW AGREEMENT FOR SECURITY DEPOSITS

This Escrow Agreement is made and entered into by and between

whose address is

hereinafter called “owner,”

whose address is

hereinafter called “contractor,” and

whose address is

hereinafter called “escrow agent.”

(1) Pursuant to Section 6106.5 of the Public Contract Code of the State of California, upon written request of the contractor, the owner shall make payments of retention earnings required to be withheld by the owner pursuant to the professional consulting services agreement entered into between the owner and contractor for ____ in the amount of ____ dated ____ hereafter referred to as the “contract.”

(2) When the owner makes payment of retentions earned directly to the escrow agent, the escrow agent shall hold them for the benefit of the contractor until such time as the escrow created under this contract is terminated. The contractor may direct the investment of the payments into securities pursuant to Section 6106.5(d) of the Public Contract Code. All terms and conditions of this agreement and the rights and responsibilities of the parties shall be equally applicable and binding when the owner pays the escrow agent directly.

(3) The contractor shall be responsible for paying all fees for the expenses incurred by the escrow agent in administering the escrow account. These expenses and payment terms shall be determined by the contractor and escrow agent.

(4) The contractor shall have the right to withdraw all or any part of the principal or interest in the escrow account only by written notice to the escrow agent accompanied by written authorization from the owner to the escrow agent that the owner consents to the withdrawal of the amount sought to be withdrawn by contractor.

(5) The owner shall have a right to draw upon the escrow account in the event of default by the contractor. Upon seven days’ written notice to the escrow agent from the owner of the default, the escrow agent shall immediately distribute the cash as instructed by the owner.

(6) Upon receipt of written notification from the owner certifying that the contract is final and complete, and that the contractor has complied with all requirements and procedures applicable to the contract, the escrow agent shall release to the contractor all deposits and interest on deposits less escrow fees and charges of the escrow account. The escrow shall be closed immediately upon disbursement of all moneys on deposit and payments of fees and charges.

(7) The escrow agent shall rely on the written notifications from the owner and the contractor pursuant to Sections (1) to (6), inclusive, of this agreement and the owner and contractor shall hold the escrow agent harmless from the escrow agent’s release, conversion, and disbursement of the securities and interest as set forth above.

(8) The names of the persons who are authorized to give written notice or to receive written notice on behalf of the owner and on behalf of the contractor in connection with the foregoing, and exemplars of their respective signatures are as follows:

On behalf of the owner:

On behalf of the contractor:

Title

Title

Name

Name

Address

Address

_____

On behalf of the escrow agent:

_____

Title

_____

Name

_____

Signature

_____

Address

_____

At the time the escrow account is opened, the owner and contractor shall deliver to the escrow agent a fully executed counterpart of this Agreement.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties have executed this Agreement by their proper officers on the date first set forth above.

Owner

Contractor

Title

Title

Name

Name

Signature

Signature

(Amended by Stats. 2005, Ch. 22, Sec. 154. Effective January 1, 2006.)