Notice of Granted Buy America Waiver

Printer Friendly Number 67 FR 56344

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[Federal Register:  September 3, 2002  (Volume 67, Number 170)]
[Page 56344-56345]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access []
Federal Transit Administration
Notice of Granted Buy America Waiver
AGENCY: Federal Transit Administration (FTA), DOT.
ACTION: Notice of granted buy America waiver.
SUMMARY: This waiver, granted August 9, 2002, allows Orion Bus 
Industries (Orion) to count the axle used in the Orion II paratransit 
vehicle as a domestic component for the purposes of calculating overall 
domestic content and was predicated on the non-availability of the item 
domestically. A similar waiver was granted by FTA to Orion on February 
28, 2000, for the period of two years. Because the market has not 
changed in the intervening two years, Orion requested that FTA grant 
another waiver. This notice shall insure that the public, particularly 
potential manufacturers, is aware of the waiver. FTA requests that the 
public notify it of any relevant changes in the domestic market of 
heavy-duty axles.
[[Page 56345]]

Counsel, Room 9316, (202) 366-1936 (telephone) or (202) 366-3809 (fax).
    Issued: August 26, 2002.
Robert D. Jamison,
Deputy Administrator.
August 9, 2002.
Mr. Christopher Crassweller,
Manager, Corporate and Legal Affairs, Orion Bus Industries, 350 
Hazelhurst Road, Mississauge, Ontario L5J 4T8.
Re: Application for Extension of Buy America Waiver for Orion II 
    Dear Mr. Crassweller: This letter responds to your 
correspondence of July 17, 2002, in which you request an extension 
of a Buy America waiver granted for the procurement of the GNX axle 
for use in your Orion II paratransit vehicle.
    The Federal Transit Administration's (FTA) requirements 
concerning domestic preference for federally funded transit projects 
are set forth in 49 U.S.C. Sec. 5323(j). Section 5323(j)(2)(C) 
addresses the general requirements for the procurement of rolling 
stock. This section provides that all rolling stock procured with 
FTA funds must have a domestic content of at least 60 percent and 
must undergo final assembly in the U.S.
    This waiver would allow Orion to count the axle as domestic for 
the purposes of calculating overall domestic content of the vehicle. 
You request a waiver under 49 U.S.C. Sec. 5323(j)(2)(B), which 
states those requirements shall not apply if the item or items being 
procured are not produced in the U.S. in sufficient and reasonably 
available quantities and of a satisfactory quality. The implementing 
regulation provides that ``[these] waivers * * * may be granted for 
a component or subcomponent in the case of procurement of the items 
governed by section 165(b)(3) of the Act (requirements for rolling 
stock). If a waiver is granted for a component or subcomponent, that 
component or subcomponent will be considered to be of domestic 
origin for the purposes of Section 661.11 of this part.'' 49 C.F.R. 
Sec. 661.7(f). The regulations allow a bidder or supplier to request 
a non-availability waiver for a component or subcomponent in the 
procurement of rolling stock. See 49 C.F.R. 661.7(f) and 49 C.F.R. 
    You claim that the type of axle necessary for the production of 
the Orion II is not available from a domestic source. In addition to 
the representations in your correspondence, you have also provided 
me with letters from two U.S. manufacturers of heavy-duty axles, 
Spicer Heavy Axle and Arvin Meritor. You represent that these are 
the only two such manufacturers, and their correspondence confirms 
that they have no plans to manufacture an axle for your paratransit 
vehicle in the U.S. FTA also posted a request for comments on this 
matter on our website and we received no comments from domestic 
manufacturers of this product.
    Based on the information you have provided, I have determined 
that the grounds for a ``non-availability'' waiver exist. Therefore, 
pursuant to the provisions of 49 U.S.C. Sec. 5323(j)(2)(B), the 
waiver is hereby extended for the procurement of heavy-duty axles 
for the Orion II for the period of two years. In order to insure 
that the public is aware of this waiver, particularly potential 
manufacturers, this waiver will be published in the Federal 
    If you have any questions, please contact Meghan G. Ludtke at 
(202) 366-1936.
        Very truly yours,
Gregory B. McBride,
Deputy Chief Counsel.
[FR Doc. 02-22264 Filed 8-30-02; 8:45 am]