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Federal Procurement and Domestic Content Programs

Simpson Strong-Tie Products

Simpson Strong-Tie® is committed to designing and manufacturing our products with minimal environmental impact. Structural connectorsprefabricated shearwallsmoment frames, and Strong-Rod® systems are designed and engineered in the United States. We seek to manufacture and source raw materials domestically when possible. Many of our products are made in the US. However, we also source or manufacture some of our product overseas, whether in Europe, Canada, or Asia. Our objective in all our sourcing and manufacturing practices is to bring the highest-quality products to our customers at the most competitive prices.

If you have a question about the sourcing or manufacture of a specific product, please email us at SimpsonTradeCompliance@strongtie.com.

The Buy American Act

The Buy American Act passed during the Great Depression to foster American industry by protecting it from foreign competition for Federal procurement contracts. The Buy American statute does not prohibit the purchase of foreign end products or use of foreign construction material. Instead, it encourages the use of domestic end products and construction material by imposing a price preference for domestic end products and construction material. 

The key to understanding the Buy American statute, which is implemented in FAR part 25, is determining whether the “end products” or “construction material” are domestic, i.e., produced, or manufactured in the United States. The analysis of whether a manufactured end product or construction material qualifies as domestic is done by determining the end product or construction material is manufactured in the United States AND the percent of domestic content. 

Effective January 2021, the President signed Executive Order (E.O.) 13881, Maximizing Use of American-Made Goods, Products, and Materials. E.O. 13881 increases the domestic content requirements and price preference for domestic products. End products or construction material that do not qualify as domestic are treated as foreign.

Build America, Buy America and Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act

The Infrastructure Law represents an investment in America’s infrastructure — to rebuild roads, bridges, ports, and railways, expand access to clean drinking water, ensure every American has access to high-speed internet. It also creates an opportunity to increase domestic manufacturing and strengthen our supply chains and national security. Build America, Buy America, (BABA) provisions require any infrastructure projects receiving federal assistance must use iron, steel, manufactured products, and construction materials that are produced in the US. The White House has published guidance for the implementation of the BABA provisions in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) in 2022. The guidance describes how departments and agencies should implement “Buy America” preference for federally-financed infrastructure projects and a “transparent process to waive” the preference, when necessary. Companies performing federally-funded infrastructure projects must ensure that they comply with requirements as well as, review and understand requested certifications of compliance for projects subject to BABA.

Other Domestic Content and Product Compliance Programs

There has been a substantial increase in policies imposed that require the use of domestically-manufactured goods in recent years. We are here to provide you with more information, answer any trade compliance-related questions you may have and work with you to create an effective plan tailored to your needs. Someone from our team will make every effort to get back to you within 24 business hours.

Here are a few of the programs we support:

  • AIS — American Iron & Steel
  • BAA — Buy American Act
  • CoC — Certificate of Compliance
  • COO Country of Origin
  • CMRT — Conflict Minerals
  • Import & Export — HS — Harmonized Schedule and ECCN — Export Control Classification Numbers
  • FTAs — Free Trade Agreements
  • LEED — Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design
  • LBC — Living Building Challenge
  • Red List — International Living Future
  • REACH — Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals
  • RoHS — Restriction of Hazardous Substances

Request More Info

If you have a question about the sourcing or manufacture of a specific product or the compliance with a particular program, please contact us or call (800) 999-5099 to talk with a Trade Compliance specialist or email us at SimpsonTradeCompliance@strongtie.com.

Key definitions used in federally-funded infrastructure projects:

Iron and Steel — “All iron and steel used in the project are produced in the United States. This means all manufacturing processes, from the initial melting stage through the application of coatings, occurred in the United States.”

Manufactured Products — “All manufactured products used in the project. This means the manufactured product was manufactured in the United States, and the cost of the components of the manufactured product that are mined, produced, or manufactured in the United States is greater than 55 percent of the total cost of all components of the manufactured product.”

Construction Materials — “All construction materials are manufactured in the United States. This means that all manufacturing processes for the construction material occurred in the United States.” Construction material means an article, material, or supply brought to the construction site by a contractor or subcontractor for incorporation into the building or work. The term also includes an item brought to the site preassembled from articles, materials, or supplies (FAR 25.003).

Waivers:

The Buy American statute can be waived in certain situations. All statues for waivers are identified within each contract. Waivers will allow “non-domestically produced End products or construction material that do not qualify as domestic to be procured.

  • International Trade Obligations: A waiver may be granted if the contract allows for the World Trade Organization Government Procurement Agreement (WTO GPA) or any other trade agreement and a waiver is necessary to ensure compliance with such obligations (FAR 25.402).
  • De Minimis: A public interest waiver that ensures the cost of processing a waiver does not exceed that of the items waived. Typically de minimis threshold is 5 percent of project costs.
  • Minor Components: A minor components waiver may include “non-domestically produced miscellaneous minor components comprising no more than 5 percent of the total material cost of an otherwise domestically produced iron and steel product to be used.”

Before a waiver is issued, the issuing Federal agency must publish a detailed explanation for the proposed determination to issue a waiver on its website. The proposed waiver must be subject to a 15-day public comment period. Simpson Strong-Tie does not offer advice on or certify product compliance with regard to any government procurement waivers.