Last year, I wrote a blog post titled: “Is Utah’s SCR (State Construction Registry) A Model For Rest of States?,” and it appears the government in Iowa may have been listening (or, more likely, their actions coincidently relate to my post). The reason is because of Iowa House File 411, which would amend the state’s mechanic lien laws to create a “State Construction Registry.”

What is a State Construction Registry?  Take a look at Iowa’s H.F. 411:

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A centralized computer database maintained and posted on the internet by the administrator that provides a central repository for the submissions and management of preliminary notices, notices of commencement of work, and mechanics’ liens on all residential construction properties.

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Mechanic lien deadlines and requirements frequently depend on when a particular notice is filed, or what’s actually on the notice. And when you think globally about all of these “notices,” and consider what they are, you must confront that the notice laws are designed to places parties and the world…on notice. The problem with these notices is that they are privately delivered from one party to another, there’s absolutely no organization of them, and a great many parties are kept in the dark.

As it is now 2011, and web-based applications are common place, there’s no reason why each state shouldn’t have a State Construction Registry where all these notices are managed, accessible and filed. It will make the mechanic lien process more fair and transparent for everyone.

The Iowa legislation appears to create a SCR only for residential projects, which is a start. Utah’s SCR remains the nation’s leader. We’ll keep you updated on the status of the Iowa legislation, which you can read in full and follow here.