106.9 Buy America Requirement

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Federal-aid projects requiring steel or iron products that are permanently incorporated into the contract work are to comply with the Buy America Requirements. Sec 106.9 provides information regarding the Buy America requirement. Certain projects may not allow the minor usage clause to be invoked. The Resident Engineer should confirm the scope of this specification on any particular project.

When does Buy America apply to manufactured items?

FHWA's guidance, Buy America policy response Control # HCC-97-070, states “A review of the Congressional Record pages pertaining to this legislation indicate that Congress' primary concern for Section 165 was to protect the domestic steel industry.” Therefore, the determination on when Buy America applies to a manufactured item should keep that in consideration.

FHWA's Buy America Q & A for Federal-Aid Program

The intent is not to create a loophole for products, either. Thus, the term “predominately steel or iron” is used as what qualifies for Buy America. The example given by FHWA in the "policy response" is that of a bridge bearing. It is manufactured and “predominately” steel. Therefore, do not claim it has some rubber gaskets or other minute non-steel components to bypass the Buy America requirement.

Determining the exact amount of steel and iron in a manufactured product is not practical. Additionally, determining the origin of each of the steel and iron components is not feasible. As a rule of thumb, any manufactured item that is composed of approximately 75% steel or iron is a threshold to begin considering Buy America application. Items such as metal cabinets and steel light poles would be predominantly steel and iron and would be subject to the Buy America guidelines. Most routine items such as traffic cameras, light fixtures, electrical components, etc. would contain minor amounts of steel and iron and therefore Buy America requirements do not apply. If you are unsure contact your liaison engineer for guidance.

The “Certificate of Materials Origins” form and supporting documentation required by Missouri Standard Specifications for Highway Construction, Section will not be required for suppliers that are members in good standing with AASHTO’s National Transportation Product Evaluation Program (NTPEP). The NTPEP supplier will not be required to submit the material of origin forms with the material. All material of origin forms for supplied steel and iron materials shall be kept on file by the supplier and available upon request.

The use of AASHTO NTPEP will be an acceptable standard per 23 CFR 635.410(d). This acceptance will apply to Category 1 and Category 2 items.

Items accepted in this allowance shall be designated on the inspection reports as “NTPEP Audited Source, No Certification Required” in the approved inspection report format.

An approved list of these suppliers is available from the NTPEP website. The website will provide information on what materials are part of the NTPEP audit program and which facilities have been approved by NTPEP. The website will also indicate the year the facility was approved. Instructions on how to access this information is shown below:

NTPEP Audited Materials

Step 1: Access the NTPEP website
Step 2: From the home page select ‘NTPEP DataMine’ located on the left side of the page.
Step 3: Select "View Data", the second choice listed.
Step 4: Select "Construction" located in the middle of the page.

NTPEP Approved Facilities

Step 1: Access the NTPEP website.
Step 2: From the home page, select "NTPEP DataMine" located on the left side of the page.
Step 3: Select "View Data", the second choice listed.
Step 4: Select "Construction" located in the middle of the page.
Step 5: Select the construction material of interest.
Step 6: Under the section entitled "Find Facilities", located along the left side of the page, utilize the following filter fields to locate the facility in question:
- Manufacturer
- Facility Locations
- Product Type (e.g., rebar, wire, welded wire fabric, etc.)
- Product Specification (e.g., ASTM A615, ASTM A706, etc.).

When reviewing reinforcing steel and wire, the following Product Specifications are currently available for selection. Please note the AASHTO equivalent for the ASTM specification is shown in brackets.

• ASTM A615 – Deformed and Plain Carbon-Steel Bars for Concrete Reinforcement [AASHTO M31]
• ASTM A706 – Deformed and Plain Low-Alloy Steel Bars for Concrete Reinforcement [AASHTO M31]
• ASTM A996 – Rail-Steel and Axle-Steel Deformed Bars for Concrete Reinforcement
• AASHTO M227 – Steel Bars, Carbon, Merchant Quality, Mechanical Properties
• ASTM A1064 – Carbon-Steel Wire and Welded Wire Reinforcement, Plain and Deformed, for Concrete [AASHTO M336]
• ASTM A995 – Castings, Austenitic-Ferritic (Duplex) Stainless Steel, for Pressure-Containing Parts
• ASTM A416 – Low-Relaxation, Seven-Wire Steel Strand for Prestressed Concrete [AASHTO M203]
• ASTM A1035 – Deformed and Plain, Low-Carbon, Chromium, Steel Bars for Concrete Reinforcement
• AASHTO M334 – Uncoated, Corrosion-Resistant, Deformed and Plain Chromium Alloyed, Billet-Steel Bars for Concrete Reinforcement and Dowels
• ASTM A955 – Deformed and Plain Stainless Steel Bars for Concrete Reinforcement

Review the Standard Specifications to determine the proper Product Specification to select for review.

Contact the Construction and Materials Division with questions regarding whether a facility has received NTPEP approval.