On behalf of USTelecom and our member companies, I would like to express my appreciation to you and the other Department of Transportation (DOT) officials who attended our September 9, 2013 meeting for taking the time to discuss the problems communications companies are experiencing in complying with Buy America provisions as they apply to facility relocations required by federally funded transportation projects. As a result of that meeting, we better understand DOT’s objectives with respect to enforcing Buy America in connection with utility relocations. We hope that you came away from the meeting with the understanding that our member companies are working hard to find solutions that will allow them to comply with the requirements of Buy America in a timely manner.
During this meeting, it was suggested that it would help DOT if the communications industry could provide more specifics as to the circumstances and types of equipment for which Buy America is already creating problems and offer steps the Department could take that would facilitate industry’s efforts without undermining the statutes’ goals and requirements. This letter is intended to be a first step in response to that invitation. As our companies move forward and encounter additional issues with their efforts to meet DOT expectations, we look forward to a continuing dialogue with DOT in order to achieve our mutual objectives.