Local Hiring Hits the Road: Guidance on US Department of Transportation's Local Hiring Pilots

Brightline Defense

The U.S. Department of Transportation is piloting a program which allows cities and states to require local hiring when using Federal Highway Administration or Federal Transit Administration funds—a preference previously considered illegal. The pilot program allows the use of good faith effort provisions and incentives, as well as penalties, to encourage compliance and ensure transportation projects help build pathways to prosperity (as outlined in USDOT’s Ladders of Opportunity vision). This paper from Brightline Defense provides guidance on the new local hiring pilot, with the authors highlighting the legal basis for the pilot program, constitutional challenges to local hiring, and suggested guidelines for local hiring.