Trump’s Buy American Hire American Executive Order Impacts Contractors
Wed Feb 7, 2018
Often federal construction projects are subject to domestic content laws which impose additional requirements on contractors. Such laws include the Federal Buy America Act and Buy American Act. Other domestic content laws such as the Jones Act also have a huge impact on contractors. These are not new legislation. However, President Trump’s “Buy American Hire American” Executive Order (EO) has put renewed emphasis on preferences for American products and compliance with these existing laws. Contractors must be proactive in understanding their obligations under these domestic preference laws.
Due to the president’s Buy American Hire American EO, contactors can anticipate renewed emphasis on, and strengthening of, domestic content laws. Indeed, such emphasis is already affecting projects tied to Alaska. Entire projects have been scrapped or placed in limbo due to these requirements, so contractors would do well to pay close attention to any compliance with American product preferences in their public contracts, whether state or federal.
Howard Roth is Of Counsel at Oles Morrison Rinker & Baker LLP where has 27 years of experience handling federal procurement matters and construction law. He is a knowledgeable advisor in all stages of federal contract law and litigation, including terminations, procurement disputes, protests, procurement integrity, rights in technical data, internal investigations and contract cost issues. Howard has been a frequent commentator on Buy American and has written on the topic for such publications as Law360 and Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce. You can also read Howard’s blog posts regarding Buy America on The Procurement Playbook.
Mike Schmidt is an attorney at Oles Morrison Rinker & Baker LLP and advises contractors on government and commercial contracts, insurance coverage issues, and litigation matters. Contractors and subcontractors rely on him for guidance on a wide array of contract questions, including bid and proposal efforts, drafting terms and conditions, FAR compliance, and pre-litigation dispute resolution. Mike also frequently advises clients on bond and insurance coverage and recovery in the construction industry.