The official website of the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council

Build America Buy America

On November 15, 2021, President Biden signed into law the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which includes the Build America Act (Pub. L., 117-58 §§ 70901-70927) (BABAA). BABAA strengthens Made in America laws and will bolster America's industrial base, protect national security, and support high-paying jobs. 

This webpage provides information on the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council’s (Council) compliance with BABAA, including any waivers sought by the Council under BABAA. Background information on BABAA can be found here: https://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/management/made-in-america/.

 

Six Month Waiver of Build America, Buy America Act

 

On August 10, 2022, the RESTORE Council issued a six-month general applicability adjustment period waiver of BABAA’s requirements in order to provide the Council with the time needed to determine how best to address this new law. BABAA mandates that federal grants for infrastructure projects include conditions requiring that the iron, steel, manufactured products, and construction materials used for such projects be produced in the United States. The Council needs to determine whether its funding is subject to BABAA and if so, how to most effectively address this law if and when it issues grants for infrastructure projects, which could include activities such as wastewater treatment and flood protection. The Council sought public comment on the waiver from June 9 - June 24, 2022. After reviewing public comments, the Council determined that proceeding with this waiver is in the public interest.


Background

The Council has determined that this adjustment period waiver is in the public interest in order to enable the Council to (a) align the requirements of BABAA with the Council-Selected Restoration Component and the Spill Impact Component of the RESTORE Act (33 U.S.C. § 1321(t) and note), both of which components are funded and administered by the Council; and (b) avoid immediate delays and disruptions to critically-important Council-funded infrastructure projects in the Gulf Coast region. Specifically, the adjustment period is needed in order for the Council to (i) determine if and how BABAA applies to its RESTORE Act projects and programs (collectively, “activities”); (ii) establish the administrative processes, documentation and capacity necessary for compliance with BABAA requirements for the long term, as appropriate; (iii) ensure that the Council maintains the continuity of its recipients’ activities; and (iv) closely coordinate among the six federal agencies and five states comprising the Council and, as appropriate, engage Council stakeholders, subrecipients, and the general public regarding BABAA. 

The waiver applies to Council funding approvals and expenditures for infrastructure activities under the Council-Selected Restoration Component and Spill Impact Component of the RESTORE Act taking place from August 10, 2022 through February 9, 2023. BABAA will not retroactively apply to funding approvals occurring before May 14, 2022, the date BABAA became effective.