We are pleased to announce a four-part webinar series based on developing best practices for US public-private partnerships (P3s). P3s are coming into their own across the US with high expectations as to how federal and state infrastructure funds can be leveraged when partnered with the private sector. Partnerships are complex on a good day and parties often must readjust expectations based on market risk, interest rates, contractor and supply shortages and recognition that risk has to be allocated on a reasonable basis, acceptable to both the private and public sector.
Our series is designed to help smooth the rough edges for parties working on P3 projects in the US by taking into consideration what the UK, UAE and Australia do well and the issues unique to implementation of any P3 project in the US. We hope you will join us for each webinar and that you will feel free to submit questions ahead of time or ask during the webinar.
We are thrilled to announce that Sandra McQuain, CEO of the McQuain Group will moderate each webinar. Her infrastructure experience and quick wit will make for good conversation with our panelists.
Best P3 Practices in the UK, UAE, and AU – Takeaways for the US
September 27, 2023
Karol Denniston, our global projects partner, is excited to welcome Sandra McQuain, James Duckworth and Brent Henderson to our first webinar panel. The panel will cover how public-private partnerships (P3s) are governed and implemented in the UK, UAE, and Australia. The panelists will discuss why the P3 process may be easier than the US experience and highlight some of the differences, including the government’s role, standardized documents, the business case for a P3 and risk allocation vs. risk sharing.
Sandra McQuain is the founder and CEO of The McQuain Group LLC. She is a passionate advocate for the utilization of the P3 model for building and improving transportation and social infrastructure in the US. Through her media and public relations firm, she provides private and public sector clients with guidance on community engagement strategies for their P3 endeavors. Sandra also serves as director of programs for the Association for the Improvement of American Infrastructure (AIAI), is the national master of ceremonies for P3C Media’s seven infrastructure conferences and is a contributing writer to P3 Bulletin, an international publication reporting on P3 projects and trends across the globe.
Prior to establishing the McQuain Group, Sandra was executive director for the England Economic and Industrial Development District (EEIDD), a base redevelopment entity located in Louisiana, which includes Alexandria International Airport among its four operating divisions. In 2021, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards appointed her to the Louisiana Board of Commerce and Industry, the entity responsible for overseeing the state’s economic development incentive programs. In 2020, Sandra served on the Resilient Louisiana Commission – Transportation and Infrastructure Task Force, an entity established by Gov. Edwards to address Louisiana’s response to the COVID crisis.
Karol K. Denniston is a member of the Global Board and the firm’s global projects partner, responsible for our ongoing expansion of global infrastructure projects. Karol is a key component of the firm’s commitment to P3 representations and other infrastructure work in North America and around the world.
Karol has a long history in infrastructure finance and development, and has broad knowledge regarding project structuring and financing. She is a deeply experienced restructuring lawyer familiar with righting struggling infrastructure projects and putting them back on track. Karol has significant experience anticipating challenges in this sector and in identifying creative solutions. Karol has extensive experience in structuring project agreements, concession agreements and other agreements that are user friendly and work for the parties.
James Duckworth is a consultant to the firm’s Infrastructure Group. He specializes in the procurement of international infrastructure projects and has substantial experience of doing so across many sectors, typically on a P3 or project financed basis. He also has substantial experience of advising various governments, in particular in the GCC region on P3 legislative, regulatory and institutional reform.
James advises on all aspects of procurement strategy, the drafting and negotiation of contractual documentation, risk management and dispute avoidance. He has a detailed understanding of all infrastructure procurement documentation, including concession agreements, power purchase agreements, EPC contracts, framework and alliancing agreements, development agreements, subcontracts, professional appointments, collateral warranties, parent company guarantees and bonds.
Brent Henderson has more than two decades’ experience advising on high-profile and complex construction and infrastructure projects, including those in roads, rail and water. This experience includes advising major contractors and project proponents on their contracting arrangements and project delivery for P3 projects.
Brent advises primarily on the front end of construction and infrastructure projects, with particular expertise in assisting clients on project delivery support and claims management. His clients include government and statutory bodies, private sector tenderers, consortia and contractors involved in major road, rail, infrastructure and telecommunications projects.
P3 Practices in the US – State Legislation and Developing US P3 Practices
October 17, 2023
In our second webinar, we look forward to an active discussion on emerging public-private partnerships (P3) practices in the US and what state legislatures are doing to improve the P3 process and what needs to be done to simplify the process and make it more attractive to the public sector. Greg Johnson and John Thomas will be joined by Natriece Bryant to provide an overview of the current state of play in the US. Kara-Marie Urban and Karol Denniston will talk about what state legislatures are doing. Austin Harrison will report in on what the federal government is doing.
Brent Henderson and James Duckworth will join the panel for Sandra McQuain’s moderated discussion looking at what can be learned from our global and US experience.
P3 Best Practices in the US – Developing Procurement Practices, Documentation and Getting to Financial Close
November 21, 2023
In our third webinar, we look to what it takes to get to a successful and timely financial close. Joining Greg Johnson and Scott Rafshoon are Sue Lee, CEO of Lesura Strategies LLC, and Thomas Sherman, AIAI director of public sector initiatives and programming (invited). After initial comments, the panel, moderated by Sandra McQuain, will discuss challenges with procurement, documentation and getting to financial close experienced by parties attempting to execute in the current environment. Karol Denniston will preview the final webinar, looking at how procurement and documentation need to consider dispute management for a project to have access to appropriate dispute management and resolution tools.
P3 Best Practices in the US – Dispute Management, Mitigation and Resolution
December 12, 2023
The last webinar in this series focuses on dispute management, mitigation, and resolution. Our speakers will address why documentation must include multiple dispute resolution tools and look at how the dispute management process can be simplified with the use of a master dispute management/resolution agreement. Disputes in complex projects are inevitable and there are many benefits to providing for and requiring specific structures to mitigate disputes and costs. The panel will address the use of oversight committees, assisted negotiation, dispute resolution boards and a variety of alternative dispute methodologies. One of the ways to reduce risk and uncertainty in public-private partnerships (P3) projects is to clearly identify dispute management procedures and to make sure the parties that are providing capital and debt for the project are on notice of disputes as and when they reach a certain threshold. Karol Denniston and Jonathan Taunton will be joined by Anne Russo of the Dispute Resolution Board Foundation for initial comment followed by a discussion moderated by Sandra McQuain.
To register for the first webinar of this series, please click the "Register Here" button above.