Beginning with the February 2017 letting, TxDOT will implement important changes to specifications regarding Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) commitments in order to comply with Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR §26.53) and Texas Administrative Code.

For all federally funded construction contracts with DBE goals, the apparent low bidder must submit DBE utilization plans or good faith efforts within 5 calendar days (as defined in CFR) after bid opening. See the Fiscal Year 2017 letting dates and corresponding submission deadlines.

If the apparent low bidder fails to submit its DBE utilization plan or good faith efforts within 5 calendar days:

  • the bidder will be declared nonresponsive,
  • the bid will be rejected,
  • the contractor will forfeit its bid guaranty, and
  • if the project is relet, the contractor will not be allowed to bid on it.

TxDOT may then recommend that the Texas Transportation Commission:

  • reject all bids, or
  • award the contract to the new apparent low bidder, if the new apparent low bidder submits its DBE utilization plan or good faith efforts within one calendar day of notification by TxDOT.

If the new apparent low bidder is unable to submit the required DBE information within one calendar day:

  • TxDOT will reject all bids,
  • the new apparent low bidder will not be deemed nonresponsive,
  • the new bidder’s guaranty will not be forfeited, and
  • the new bidder will remain eligible to submit future proposals for the same project.

In February 2017, TxDOT will implement new modules of the Diversity Management System (DMS) for reporting DBE Utilization Plans and good faith efforts. Once implemented, all TxDOT staff and contractors will be required to use this system.