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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR Data is current as of October 23, 2014

Title 23Chapter ISubchapter GPart 635 → Subpart D


Title 23: Highways
PART 635—CONSTRUCTION AND MAINTENANCE


Subpart D—General Material Requirements


Contents
§635.401   Purpose.
§635.403   Definitions.
§635.405   Applicability.
§635.407   Use of materials made available by a public agency.
§635.409   Restrictions upon materials.
§635.410   Buy America requirements.
§635.411   Material or product selection.
§635.413   Guaranty and warranty clauses.
§635.417   Convict produced materials.

Source: 41 FR 36204, Aug. 27, 1976, unless otherwise noted.

§635.401   Purpose.

The purpose of this subpart is to prescribe requirements and procedures relating to product and material selection and use on Federal-aid highway projects.

§635.403   Definitions.

As used in this subpart, the following terms have the meanings indicated:

(a) FHWA Division Administrator means the chief Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) official assigned to conduct business in a particular State;

(b) Material means any tangible substance incorporated into a Federal-aid highway project;

(c) PS&E means plans, specifications, and estimates;

(d) Special provisions means additions and revisions to the standard and supplemental specifications applicable to an individual project;

(e) Standard specifications means a compilation in book form of specifications approved for general application and repetitive use;

(f) State has the meaning set forth in 23 U.S.C. 101;

(g) State transportation department means that department, commission, board, or official of any State charged by its laws with the responsibility for highway construction;

(h) Supplemental specifications means approved additions and revisions to the standard specifications.

§635.405   Applicability.

The requirements and procedures prescribed in this subpart apply to all contracts relating to Federal-aid highway projects.

[69 FR 7119, Feb. 13, 2004]

§635.407   Use of materials made available by a public agency.

(a) Contracts for highway projects shall require the contractor to furnish all materials to be incorporated in the work and shall permit the contractor to select the sources from which the materials are to be obtained. Exception to this requirement may be made when there is a definite finding by the State transportation department and concurred in by the FHWA Division Administrator, that it is in the public interest to require the contractor to use material furnished by the State transportation department or from sources designated by the State transportation department. In cases such as this, the FHWA does not expect mutual sharing of costs unless the State transportation department receives a related credit from another agency or political subdivision of the State. Where such a credit does accrue to the State transportation department, it shall be applied to the Federal-aid project involved. The designation of a mandatory material source may be permitted based on environmental considerations, provided the environment would be substantially enhanced without excessive cost. Otherwise, if a State transportation department proposal to designate a material source for mandatory use would result in higher project costs, Federal-aid funds shall not participate in the increase even if the designation would conserve other public funds.

(b) The provisions of paragraph (a) of this section will not preclude the designation in the plans and specifications of sources of local natural materials, such as borrow aggregates, that have been investigated by the State transportation department and found to contain materials meeting specification requirements. The use of materials from such designated sources shall not be mandatory unless there is a finding of public interest as stated in paragraph (a) of this section.

(c) Federal funds may participate in the cost of specifications materials made available by a public agency when they have been actually incorporated in accepted items of work, or in the cost of such materials meeting the criteria and stockpiled at the locations specified in §635.114 of this chapter.

(d) To be eligible for Federal participation in its cost, any material, other than local natural materials, to be purchased by the State transportation department and furnished to the contractor for mandatory use in the project, must have been acquired on the basis of competitive bidding, except when there is a finding of public interest justifying the use of another method of acquisition. The location and unit price at which such material will be available to the contractor must be stated in the special provisions for the benefit of all prospective bidders. The unit cost eligible for Federation participation will be limited to the unit cost of such material to the State transportation department.

(e) When the State transportation department or another public agency owns or has control over the source of a local natural material the unit price at which such material will be made available to the contractor must be stated in the plans or special provisions. Federal participation will be limited to (1) the cost of the material to the State transportation department or other public agency; or (2) the fair and reasonable value of the material, whichever is less. Special cases may arise that will justify Federal participation on a basis other than that set forth above. Such cases should be fully documented and receive advance approval by the FHWA Division Administrator.

(f) Costs incurred by the State transportation department or other public agency for acquiring a designated source or the right to take materials from it will not be eligible for Federal participation if the source is not used by the contractor.

(g) The contract provisions for one or a combination of Federal-aid projects shall not specify a mandatory site for the disposal of surplus excavated materials unless there is a finding by the State transportation department with the concurrence of the FHWA Division Administrator that such placement is the most economical except that the designation of a mandatory site may be permitted based on environmental considerations, provided the environment would be substantially enhanced without excessive cost.

§635.409   Restrictions upon materials.

No requirement shall be imposed and no procedure shall be enforced by any State transportation department in connection with a project which may operate:

(a) To require the use of or provide a price differential in favor of articles or materials produced within the State, or otherwise to prohibit, restrict or discriminate against the use of articles or materials shipped from or prepared, made or produced in any State, territory or possession of the United States; or

(b) To prohibit, restrict or otherwise discriminate against the use of articles or materials of foreign origin to any greater extent than is permissible under policies of the Department of Transportation as evidenced by requirements and procedures prescribed by the FHWA Administrator to carry out such policies.

§635.410   Buy America requirements.

(a) The provisions of this section shall prevail and be given precedence over any requirements of this subpart which are contrary to this section. However, nothing in this section shall be construed to be contrary to the requirements of §635.409(a) of this subpart.

(b) No Federal-aid highway construction project is to be authorized for advertisement or otherwise authorized to proceed unless at least one of the following requirements is met:

(1) The project either: (i) Includes no permanently incorporated steel or iron materials, or (ii) if steel or iron materials are to be used, all manufacturing processes, including application of a coating, for these materials must occur in the United States. Coating includes all processes which protect or enhance the value of the material to which the coating is applied.

(2) The State has standard contract provisions that require the use of domestic materials and products, including steel and iron materials, to the same or greater extent as the provisions set forth in this section.

(3) The State elects to include alternate bid provisions for foreign and domestic steel and iron materials which comply with the following requirements. Any procedure for obtaining alternate bids based on furnishing foreign steel and iron materials which is acceptable to the Division Administrator may be used. The contract provisions must (i) require all bidders to submit a bid based on furnishing domestic steel and iron materials, and (ii) clearly state that the contract will be awarded to the bidder who submits the lowest total bid based on furnishing domestic steel and iron materials unless such total bid exceeds the lowest total bid based on furnishing foreign steel and iron materials by more than 25 percent.

(4) When steel and iron materials are used in a project, the requirements of this section do not prevent a minimal use of foreign steel and iron materials, if the cost of such materials used does not exceed one-tenth of one percent (0.1 percent) of the total contract cost or $2,500, whichever is greater. For purposes of this paragraph, the cost is that shown to be the value of the steel and iron products as they are delivered to the project.

(c)(1) A State may request a waiver of the provisions of this section if;

(i) The application of those provisions would be inconsistent with the public interest; or

(ii) Steel and iron materials/products are not produced in the United States in sufficient and reasonably available quantities which are of a satisfactory quality.

(2) A request for waiver, accompanied by supporting information, must be submitted in writing to the Regional Federal Highway Administrator (RFHWA) through the FHWA Division Administrator. A request must be submitted sufficiently in advance of the need for the waiver in order to allow time for proper review and action on the request. The RFHWA will have approval authority on the request.

(3) Requests for waivers may be made for specific projects, or for certain materials or products in specific geographic areas, or for combinations of both, depending on the circumstances.

(4) The denial of the request by the RFHWA may be appealed by the State to the Federal Highway Administrator (Administrator), whose action on the request shall be considered administratively final.

(5) A request for a waiver which involves nationwide public interest or availability issues or more than one FHWA region may be submitted by the RFHWA to the Administrator for action.

(6) A request for waiver and an appeal from a denial of a request must include facts and justification to support the granting of the waiver. The FHWA response to a request or appeal will be in writing and made available to the public upon request. Any request for a nationwide waiver and FHWA's action on such a request may be published in the Federal Register for public comment.

(7) In determining whether the waivers described in paragraph (c)(1) of this section will be granted, the FHWA will consider all appropriate factors including, but not limited to, cost, administrative burden, and delay that would be imposed if the provision were not waived.

(d) Standard State and Federal-aid contract procedures may be used to assure compliance with the requirements of this section.

[48 FR 53104, Nov. 25, 1983, as amended at 49 FR 18821, May 3, 1984; 58 FR 38975, July 21, 1993]

§635.411   Material or product selection.

(a) Federal funds shall not participate, directly or indirectly, in payment for any premium or royalty on any patented or proprietary material, specification, or process specifically set forth in the plans and specifications for a project, unless:

(1) Such patented or proprietary item is purchased or obtained through competitive bidding with equally suitable unpatented items; or

(2) The State transportation department certifies either that such patented or proprietary item is essential for synchronization with existing highway facilities, or that no equally suitable alternate exists; or

(3) Such patented or proprietary item is used for research or for a distinctive type of construction on relatively short sections of road for experimental purposes.

(b) When there is available for purchase more than one nonpatented, nonproprietary material, semifinished or finished article or product that will fulfill the requirements for an item of work of a project and these available materials or products are judged to be of satisfactory quality and equally acceptable on the basis of engineering analysis and the anticipated prices for the related item(s) of work are estimated to be approximately the same, the PS&E for the project shall either contain or include by reference the specifications for each such material or product that is considered acceptable for incorporation in the work. If the State transportation department wishes to substitute some other acceptable material or product for the material or product designated by the successful bidder or bid as the lowest alternate, and such substitution results in an increase in costs, there will not be Federal-aid participation in any increase in costs.

(c) A State transportation department may require a specific material or product when there are other acceptable materials and products, when such specific choice is approved by the Division Administrator as being in the public interest. When the Division Administrator's approval is not obtained, the item will be nonparticipating unless bidding procedures are used that establish the unit price of each acceptable alternative. In this case Federal-aid participation will be based on the lowest price so established.

(d) Reference in specifications and on plans to single trade name materials will not be approved on Federal-aid contracts.

(e) In the case of a design-build project, the following requirements apply: Federal funds shall not participate, directly or indirectly, in payment for any premium or royalty on any patented or proprietary material, specification, or process specifically set forth in the Request for Proposals document unless the conditions of paragraph (a) of this section are applicable.

(f) State transportation departments (State DOTs) shall have the autonomy to determine culvert and storm sewer material types to be included in the construction of a project on a Federal-aid highway.

[41 FR 36204, Aug. 27, 1976, as amended at 67 FR 75926, Dec. 10, 2002; 71 FR 66454, Nov. 15, 2006; 78 FR 5717, Jan. 28, 2013]

§635.413   Guaranty and warranty clauses.

The STD may include warranty provisions in National Highway System (NHS) construction contracts in accordance with the following:

(a) Warranty provisions shall be for a specific construction product or feature. Items of maintenance not eligible for Federal participation shall not be covered.

(b) All warranty requirements and subsequent revisions shall be submitted to the Division Administrator for advance approval.

(c) No warranty requirement shall be approved which, in the judgment of the Division Administrator, may place an undue obligation on the contractor for items over which the contractor has no control.

(d) A STD may follow its own procedures regarding the inclusion of warranty provisions in non-NHS Federal-aid contracts.

(e) In the case of a design-build project, the following requirements will apply instead of paragraphs (a) through (d) of this section.

(1) General project warranties may be used on NHS projects, provided:

(i) The term of the warranty is short (generally one to two years); however, projects developed under a public-private agreement may include warranties that are appropriate for the term of the contract or agreement.

(ii) The warranty is not the sole means of acceptance;

(iii) The warranty must not include items of routine maintenance which are not eligible for Federal participation; and,

(iv) The warranty may include the quality of workmanship, materials and other specific tasks identified in the contract.

(2) Performance warranties for specific products on NHS projects may be used at the STD's discretion. If performance warranties are used, detailed performance criteria must be provided in the Request for Proposal document.

(3) The STD may follow its own procedures regarding the inclusion of warranty provisions on non-NHS Federal-aid design-build contracts.

(4) For best value selections, the STD may allow proposers to submit alternate warranty proposals that improve upon the warranty terms in the RFP document. Such alternate warranty proposals must be in addition to the base proposal that responds to the RFP requirements.

[60 FR 44274, Aug. 25, 1995, as amended at 67 FR 75926, Dec. 10, 2002; 72 FR 45336, Aug. 14, 2007]

§635.417   Convict produced materials.

(a) Materials produced after July 1, 1991, by convict labor may only be incorporated in a Federal-aid highway construction project if such materials have been:

(1) Produced by convicts who are on parole, supervised release, or probation from a prison or

(2) Produced in a qualified prison facility and the cumulative annual production amount of such materials for use in Federal-aid highway construction does not exceed the amount of such materials produced in such facility for use in Federal-aid highway construction during the 12-month period ending July 1, 1987.

(b) Qualified prison facility means any prison facility in which convicts, during the 12-month period ending July 1, 1987, produced materials for use in Federal-aid highway construction projects.

[53 FR 1923, Jan. 25, 1988, as amended at 58 FR 38975, July 21, 1993]



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