49 CFR 661.7 - Waivers.

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§ 661.7 Waivers.

(a) Section 5323(j)(2) of Title 49 United States Code provides that the general requirements of 49 U.S.C. 5323(j)(1) shall not apply in four specific instances. This section sets out the conditions for the three statutory waivers based on public interest, non-availability, and price-differential. Section 661.11 of this part sets out the conditions for the fourth statutory waiver governing the procurement of rolling stock and associated equipment.

(b) Under the provision of 49 U.S.C. 5323(j)(2)(A), the Administrator may waive the general requirements of 49 U.S.C. 5323(j)(1) if the Administrator finds that their application would be inconsistent with the public interest. In determining whether the conditions exist to grant this public interest waiver, the Administrator will consider all appropriate factors on a case-by-case basis, unless a general exception is specifically set out in this part. When granting a public interest waiver, the Administrator shall issue a detailed written statement justifying why the waiver is in the public interest. The Administrator shall publish this justification in the Federal Register, providing the public with a reasonable time for notice and comment of not more than seven calendar days.

(c) Under the provision of 49 U.S.C. 5323(j)(2), the Administrator may waive the general requirements of 49 U.S.C. 5323(j) if the Administrator finds that the materials for which a waiver is requested are not produced in the United States in sufficient and reasonably available quantities and of a satisfactory quality.

(1) It will be presumed that the conditions exist to grant this non-availability waiver if no responsive and responsible bid is received offering an item produced in the United States.

(2) In the case of a sole source procurement, the Administrator will grant this non-availability waiver only if the grantee provides sufficient information which indicates that the item to be procured is only available from a single source or that the item to be procured is not produced in sufficient and reasonably available quantities of a satisfactory quality in the United States.

(3) After contract award, the Administrator may grant a non-availability waiver under this paragraph, in any case in which a bidder or offeror originally certified compliance with the Buy America requirements in good faith, but can no longer comply with its certification. The Administrator will grant a non-availability waiver only if the grantee provides sufficient evidence that the original certification was made in good faith and that the item to be procured cannot now be obtained domestically due to commercial impossibility or impracticability. In determining whether the conditions exist to grant a post-award non-availability waiver, the Administrator will consider all appropriate factors on a case-by-case basis.

(d) Under the provision of section 165(b)(4) of the Act, the Administrator may waive the general requirements of section 165(a) if the Administrator finds that the inclusion of a domestic item or domestic material will increase the cost of the contract between the grantee and its supplier of that item or material by more than 25 percent. The Administrator will grant this price-differential waiver if the amount of the lowest responsive and responsible bid offering the item or material that is not produced in the United States multiplied by 1.25 is less than the amount of the lowest responsive and responsible bid offering the item or material produced in the United States.

(e) The four statutory waivers of 49 U.S.C. 5323(j)(2) as set out in this part shall be treated as being separate and distinct from each other.

(f) The waivers described in paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section may be granted for a component or subcomponent in the case of the procurement of the items governed by 49 U.S.C. 5323(j)(2)(C) (requirements for rolling stock). If a waiver is granted for a component or a subcomponent, that component or subcomponent will be considered to be of domestic origin for the purposes of § 661.11 of this part.

(g) The waivers described in paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section may be granted for a specific item or material that is used in the production of a manufactured product that is governed by the requirements of § 661.5(d) of this part. If such a waiver is granted to such a specific item or material, that item or material will be treated as being of domestic origin.

(h) The provisions of this section shall not apply to products produced in a foreign country if the Secretary, in consultation with the United States Trade Representative, determines that:

(1) That foreign country is party to an agreement with the United States pursuant to which the head of an agency of the United States has waived the requirements of this section; and

(2) That foreign country has violated the terms of the agreement by discriminating against products covered by this section that are produced in the United States and are covered by the agreement.

Appendix A to § 661.7 - General Waivers

(a) All waivers published in 48 CFR 25.104 which establish excepted articles, materials, and supplies for the Buy American Act of 1933 (41 U.S.C. 10a-d), as the waivers may be amended from time to time, apply to this part under the provisions of § 661.7 (b) and (c).

(b) Under the provisions of § 661.7 (b) and (c) of this part, a general public interest waiver from the Buy America requirements applies to microprocessors, computers, microcomputers, or software, or other such devices, which are used solely for the purpose of processing or storing data. This general waiver does not extend to a product or device which merely contains a microprocessor or microcomputer and is not used solely for the purpose of processing or storing data.

(c) Under the provisions of § 661.7(b) of this part, a general public interest waiver from the Buy America requirements for “small purchases” (as defined in the “common grant rule,” at 49 CFR 18.36(d)) made by FTA grantees with capital, planning, or operating assistance.

[56 FR 932, Jan. 9, 1991, as amended at 60 FR 37928, July 24, 1995, 61 FR 6302, Feb. 16, 1996; 71 FR 14117, Mar. 21, 2006; 72 FR 53697, Sept. 20, 2007; 74 FR 30239, June 25, 2009]

This is a list of United States Code sections, Statutes at Large, Public Laws, and Presidential Documents, which provide rulemaking authority for this CFR Part.

This list is taken from the Parallel Table of Authorities and Rules provided by GPO [Government Printing Office].

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United States Code
U.S. Code: Title 49 - TRANSPORTATION
Public Laws

Title 49 published on 2015-10-01

The following are ALL rules, proposed rules, and notices (chronologically) published in the Federal Register relating to 49 CFR Part 661 after this date.

  • 2016-09-01; vol. 81 # 170 - Thursday, September 1, 2016
    1. 81 FR 60278 - Notice of Policy on the Implementation of the Phased Increase in Domestic Content Under the Buy America Waiver for Rolling Stock and Notice of Public Interest Waiver of Buy America Domestic Content Requirements for Rolling Stock Procurement in Limited Circumstances
      GPO FDSys XML | Text
      DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, Federal Transit Administration
      Notice of final policy and public interest waiver.
      The final policy takes effect on September 1, 2016.
      49 CFR Part 661