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Suggested Citation:"Foreword." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Buy America Requirements for Federal Highway Projects. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25799.
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Background State highway departments and transportation agen- cies have a continuing need to keep abreast of operat- ing practices and legal elements of specific problems in highway law. The NCHRP Legal Research Digest and the Selected Studies in Transportation Law (SSTL) series are intended to keep departments up-to-date on laws that will affect their operations. Foreword The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Buy America provision, often called the “Buy America Act,” requires federally funded highway projects to use only steel, iron, and manufactured products produced in the United States. However, FHWA has a longstanding gen- eral waiver for manufactured products other than steel or iron, allowing such manufactured products to be used on federally funded highway projects. Issues have arisen in recent years regarding how to apply the FHWA Buy America requirements to: (1) manufactured products with steel and iron compo- nents; (2) vehicle and boat purchases; (3) utility reloca- tions; and (4) FHWA-funded projects where some seg- ments are funded by agencies other than FHWA, since state agencies are also subject to state Buy America laws. This digest summarizes the intent and application of the FHWA Buy America provision. It also sum marizes the procedure that FHWA has implemented for granting waivers and the impact that court interpretation of such waivers has had on the industry in such cases as United Steel, Paper & Forestry, Rubber, Manufacturing, Energy, Allied Industrial & Service Workers Inter national Union v. Federal Highway Administration. The digest also in- cludes a discussion of the relationship between the FHWA Buy America provision and other Buy America laws, and the digest addresses enforcement of the FHWA Buy America provision and penalties for its violation. The digest will be useful for highway attorneys, pro- curement officials, policy makers, highway contractors, and all other persons involved in federally funded high- way projects subject to Buy America requirements. Buy America Requirements for Federal Highway Projects This digest was prepared under NCHRP Project 20-06, “Legal Problems Arising Out of Highway Programs,” for which the Transportation Research Board (TRB) is the agency coordinating the research. Under Topic 24-01, Timothy R. Wyatt, Conner Gwyn Schenck PLLC, Greensboro, NC, prepared this digest. The opinions and conclusions expressed or implied in this digest are those of the researchers who performed the research and are not necessarily those of the Transportation Research Board; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; or the program sponsors. The responsible program officer is Gwen Chisholm Smith. APRIL 2020 NATIONAL COOPERATIVE HIGHWAY RESEARCH PROGRAM NCHRPLRD 80 LEGAL RESEARCH DIGEST

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The Federal Highway Administration's “Buy America Act” requires federally funded highway projects to use only steel, iron, and manufactured products produced in the United States.

The TRB National Cooperative Highway Research Program's NCHRP LRD 80: Buy America Requirements for Federal Highway Projects summarizes the intent and application of the provision. It also summarizes the procedure that FHWA has implemented for granting waivers and the impact that court interpretation of such waivers has had on the industry.

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