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State Advocacy

Public design-build projects can only happen if the process is authorized by law. When DBIA was founded in 1993, only three states authorized design-build on public projects. Within ten years design-build was authorized in some fashion in 42 states and the District of Columbia. Today, DBIA members can use design-build for public projects in some form in all fifty states, and a majority of states permit design-build for all agencies for all types of design and construction. ​For more maps, click on the general authorization map below: 

 What We're Doing Now


By raising the profile of design-build’s many benefits with legislators and key public officials, DBIA encourages owners in government agencies to take an active role in passing authorizing legislation, and gives them the knowledge to advocate for using design-build with other key decision-makers. When we visit elected officials and government representatives, we discuss the reasons design-build is now nearly 40 percent of the non-residential construction market, and encourage them to follow the trend and not fall behind their neighbors. ​

Pending Legislation

State Statute Report



Our advocacy efforts in 2016 have carried across geographical regions and have been moving quickly thus far in the legislative session. With legislation at every stage from a first committee to the Governor’s desk, DBIA’s legislative efforts this year have been engaged at the local, regional and national levels. Some of the notable bills, as of May 16, 2016, are:

California: Two bills have been introduced to address the transportation P3 law which sunsets this year.  A 2a which would eliminate the sunset and (A 2742) would extend the sunset to 2030. Both bills would also authorize the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority to use P3s. DBIA supports extending or eliminating the sunset. Legislation (S 957) to extend design-build to all health care districts has been introduced in the Senate.  The A 2a has passed out of committee and awaits a floor vote. No change since last report. A 2742 passed out of the Transportation Committee on a 13-1 vote and went to the Appropriations Committee. No change since last report. S 957 passed the Senate 38-0 and moves to the Assembly.

Colorado: SB 210 would prohibit the DOT from penalizing a contractor for the lack of experience in completing projects awarded on a design-build basis, if they satisfied the level of prequalification on DOT projects of $75 million or less. The bill passed the Senate and is in the House State, Veterans & Military Affairs Committee where it was postponed indefinitely on a 5-4 vote.

Hawaii: HB 2544 was originally proposed language to align the state’s procurement code with federal statutory procurement requirements and federal administrative procurement requirements. However, the bill was amended March 17 to direct the State Procurement Office, the Department of Accounting and General Services, to instead conduct a comprehensive analysis of the Hawaii public procurement code the awarding of construction contracts. The bill passed the House and the Senate Ways and Means Committee and is in a conference committee to work out the difference between the two versions of the bill.

IllinoisThree bills (H 5813, S 3020 and S 2140) have been introduced which would authorize design-build and CMGC. DBIA supports these bills. S 3020 passed the Senate and moved to the House.

Louisiana: Legislation was introduced authorizing the DOT to use P3s. S 195 has passed the Senate and received its third reading and is awaiting a final vote in the House.

Massachusetts: Legislation (S 1722) has been introduced expanding the use of P3s. The bill has passed out of its first committee and moved to the Senate Ways and means Committee.

Missouri: DBIA’s bill (H 2376) that we have been working on for three years has passed through the legislature and now awaits the Governor’s signature. The legislation authorizes design-build for localities. The bill enables any local political subdivision to use design-build project delivery at their discretion, and ensures that community development block grants are properly allocated to water and wastewater projects that are delivered using design-build. The bill awaits the Governor’s signature.

Minnesota: HB 3692; the House bonding bill includes provisions for $700 million for design-build projects. Bill has been introduced and referred to the House Capital Investment Committee.

New Hampshire: Legislation was introduced to authorize P3s on transportation projects. S 549, which is supported by DBIA, has passed the Senate and House, and is now eligible to be sent to the desk of the Governor.

New Jersey: Introduced by Assembly Majority Leader Louis Greenwald, AB 1730 sets out procedures for the award of design-build contracts for contracting units in the state. DBIA testified in support of this bill and it passed out of committee on a 3-2 vote. No change from last week.

Ohio: H 180 and S 152 would prohibit a public authority from requiring a contractor to employ a certain percentage of individuals from the geographic area of the public authority for the design or construction of a project. The bill has passed the House and Senate and moves to Governor Kasich’s desk.

Washington: During a special session, all bills are automatically re-introduced. One bill that we are tracking is H1218 a bill that authorizes P3s for transportation and design-build on projects under $10 million (currently allowed under a pilot program). The bill passed out of the House Transportation Committee.




DBIA's team of advocacy professionals are working in many states including Minnesota, South Carolina, New Mexico and Iowa, but the following is a list of some of the most recent developments this year.

  • With the passage of HB 5997, the Washington Department of Transportation was authorized and encouraged to use design-build for projects over $2 million, reducing the price threshold after which design-build may be used from its previous limit of projects exceeding $10 million. The bill was introduced by Representative Curtis King who serves as Chair of the House Transportation Committee. The passage of this bill expands the opportunity for design-build to demonstrate how well it can work for smaller-sized projects.
  • Baton Rouge saw two design-build bills enacted this session to expand and extend design-build authority for regional transit authorities and ports within the state. With the sunset date for ports to utilize design-build set to expire in 2015, enacting an extension was a top legislative priority for DBIA this year. This goal was fulfilled by the passage of SB 66, extending the ports’ authority until 2020. The second bill, SB 159, authorized any regional transit authority to let a design-build contract for new ferries on the Mississippi River.
  • Passage of HB 1 and HB 20 in Texas remove the sunset date for the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT)'s design-build authorization. Together, the bills allow TxDOT to more easily plan for the future, and continue to successfully use the design-build project delivery method. Design-build has been a valuable tool for TxDOT to meet the growing transportation needs in Texas. Failure to reauthorize design-build legislation would have been a major setback for an agency that has had a very successful design-build program.

New York
  • DBIA worked with coalition partners, particularly the NYC DOT, to expand design-build authority for another two years. New York State first approved design-build authority in 2011, and has entered into dozens of design-build contracts since then, including one for the multi-billion dollar Tappan Zee Bridge replacement.
  • Passage of SB 785 culminates the longtime industry effort to standardize design-build laws in California, and it is the eighth bill passed in California in the past year expanding design-build authority. SB 785 streamlines California design-build laws and provides clarity and increased opportunity for project owners and practitioners.


  • In Illinois, we supported efforts to pass SB 492, which extends the State Building Commission’s design-build authority until 2018. We were involved in this effort early and were proud to watch it pass and be signed into law in January.
  • In Utah, we worked to pass SB 190, revising contract types and definitions for rulemaking that made design-build even easier to use.
  • In the state of Washington, we helped pass two significant bills that were both signed by the Governor in March. HB 2555 keeps proposals submitted for design-build projects exempt from public disclosure until the highest scoring finalist has been named or the selection process has been terminated. This is essential to ensuring companies’ bids, methods and advantages remain confidential, increasing the competitiveness of the process. We also helped pass SB 6001 which provides funding for two design-build projects: the I-405 Kirkland Stage 2 widening project and the SR 167 Puyallup Bridge Replacement. The two projects are high-profile in the state, so the fact that the legislation mandates use of design-build is a testament to how reliably design-build delivers high-quality infrastructure. 
  • In Minnesota, we were successful in gaining passage of HB 677, a bill funding a new state legislative office building that specifically calls for using design-build to deliver the project. Following passage, however, there were nearly ten bills calling for new onerous requirements on design-build projects and repeal of HB 677. Thus far, we have worked to successfully block all of these bills or have the unnecessary requirements stripped out of the bill.


  • DBIA had major victories in West Virginia and Arkansas, two states which had State Department of Transportation (DOT) pilot programs with strict limits on the number of allowed design-build projects. The bill passed in West Virginia (SB 553) would eliminate an expiration (or "sunset") and the limitation on the number of design-build projects transforming the pilot program to a permanent program. Up to $50 million per year could go towards design-build projects and any unused portions could be rolled over to another year up to $150 million. Similarly, the Arkansas bill (HB 1702) eliminates the requirement that design-build could only be used on projects in excess of $50 million and ended  limits on the number of design-build projects.
  • In a significant victory for DBIA, North Carolina passed HB 857 authorizing all local governments to use design-build and P3s including QBS (read the press release here). North Carolina has been the epicenter of local Qualification Based Selection (QBS) legislation. Before DBIA helped pass this law, North Carolina local governments had to receive legislative approval on a case-by-case basis to use design-build. The passage of HB 857 makes North Carolina one of the best states to do design-build projects. 
  • Three states - Georgia, Kentucky and Illinois - were states with limited DOT design-build authority, only using design-build on a “low bid” basis. In Georgia’s case, its DOT had been very aggressive in its use of design-build but felt the low bid only option had its limitations. The newly enacted “best value” law, SB 70, will allow GDOT to take its design-build program to the next level, and choose design-build teams based on qualifications. Kentucky and Illinois took a more conservative approach: they introduced legislation calling for pilot programs allowing best value. The Kentucky bill (HB 445) was recently enacted and the Illinois bill is still pending.
  • Indiana passed legislation giving airports authority to use design-build.




To inquire further about our maps, please email Andrew Ausel, Manager, Legislative and Public Affairs at