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All Federal assisted construction contracts must include the provisions of Form FHWA-1273 which must be physically incorporated into all contracts as well as appropriate subcontracts and purchase orders. These required contract provisions contain requirements that prohibit discrimination; provide for Equal Employment Opportunity; require payment of predetermined minimum wages; stipulate subcontracting requirements and limitations; mandate compliance with health and safety standards at the work place and require compliance with all appropriate environmental regulations among the noted provisions. Form FHWA-1273 contains a number of certification/provision requirements including non-collusion, lobbying and suspension/debarment. Refer to the “Nondiscrimination Agreement” in the Assurances/Agreements appendix to review the form.
A project may only be advertised for bid for prospective contractors after Plan Specifications and Estimates (PS&E) approval and project authorization to proceed to the construction phase are obtained. The authorization is documented and is based on the following:
1. All Right of Way clearances, utility and rail roadwork either have been completed or arrangements have been made for coordination during construction.
2. All matters involving the relocation of individuals and families have been properly addressed when such circumstances exist.
3. All requirements pertaining to the public involvement/hearing process and the location and design approval process have been satisfactorily addressed.
4. Where applicable, area-wide agency compliance review requirements and issues (i.e., clearinghouses) have been accomplished appropriately, completed and/or resolved.

All advertising policies and practices must assure free and open competition.
This also applies to:
1. Licensing, bonding, prequalification and bidding.
2. Title VI, nondiscrimination, assurances with regard to race, color, national origin, sex, disability and age.

Contracts are normally advertised in newspapers, trade journals or other appropriate media to reach a wide audience, attract greater attention and enhance competition. The minimum advertisement period is 3 weeks. There are exceptions when circumstances warrant shorter periods. The period can also be longer for complex projects. When an addendum is issued to change plans or bid items, the bid opening date may be changed to allow bidders time to incorporate the revisions into the bid.

Potential Title VI Issues
1. Whether appropriate contract provisions are incorporated into contracts funded by Federal financial assistance.
2. When awarding a contract, whether the contractor has any unresolved Title VI violations.

Recommended Good Practices and Mitigation Measures
1. Prior to contract award, contact DCIU to verify that the vendor does not have an active Title VI violation.
2. Review all contracts to ensure nondiscrimination clauses are incorporated.
3. Periodically review and analyze processes to ensure nondiscrimination – what can appear as neutral on its face can have discriminatory effects.
4. Periodically review outreach activities to ensure small disadvantaged minority, women, disabled and disabled veteran businesses are invited to participate.
5. Document actions taken to ensure Title VI compliance.

Possible Compliance Review Questions
1. How are contract opportunities advertised? Describe the process.
2. Describe the requirements for submitting a bid?
3. Describe the sub-contracting opportunities?
4. Describe the process used to promote the participation of Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) firms?
5. Who monitors the contractor’s adherence with the Title VI requirements?
6. Describe the award process.
7. Describe the process used to ensure there are no unresolved Title VI violations.
8. Are locations accessible (geographically and structurally), appropriate times and translation services planned for and provided?
9. Staffing Composition
a. Provide a staffing composition listing by position, race and gender. Include an organizational chart.
b. Policy and Advisory Committees – Provide a listing of committees and their respective members by position, race and gender.
c. Provide a listing of persons who are designated to provide alternative language assistance and identify what languages they translate.
10. Complaints
a. Provide a copy of your Title VI complaint procedure. How is the community, your customers, made aware of this process?
b. How many Title VI related complaints have you received in the past two years?
c. What was the outcome of those complaints?
11. Training
a. Has staff received formal or informal training regarding Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, related statutes and Environmental Justice Executive Orders?
b. What is your schedule for Title VI training this year and who will attend?

Self Monitoring
1. How does your program ensure that its bidding and contract award procedures are consistent with the nondiscrimination and affirmative action requirements of Title VI?
2. What has your program done to identify any requirements or procedures that may present barriers or obstacles to DBE firms attempting to seek contract opportunities including the following:
· Bonding requirements
○ Bid Bond
○ Payment Bond
○ Performance Bond

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