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FHWA Order M1100.1A

Order
Subject
FHWA Delegations and Organization Manual: Chapter 9
Classification Code Date  
M1100.1A September 10, 2002

Contents

PART II (ORGANIZATION AND FUNCTIONS)

Chapter 9 (Office of Chief Counsel)

Section 1. Chief Counsel

  1. What is the mission of the Office of Chief Counsel? To provide legal advice and services regarding all aspects of FHWA's programs and the representation of FHWA in legal or administrative proceedings, and work with State and local government transportation attorneys and other customers to enhance the understanding and application of Federal laws and procedures relating to transportation.

  2. What are the functions of the Office of Chief Counsel?

    1. Advocacy.   As FHWA's legal advocate, provides representation and other legal services in connection with any litigation or administrative proceeding involving FHWA or its officials, and provides appropriate liaison and assistance to the Department of Justice and the Office of the General Counsel on such matters.

    2. Legislation.   Performs all legal services and coordinates all activities in connection with the agency's legislative program; drafts legislative proposals, prepares reports on legislation, prepares testimony and responds to congressional inquiries involving legislative matters. Attends congressional hearings and other congressional staff meetings to assist committees and DOT officials, and provides technical assistance to Congress and its committees and staff. Develops, with the assistance of Headquarters offices, appropriate comments on bills, proposed bills, and resolutions as they affect the FHWA and its programs.

    3. Regulations.   Provides legal advice and services in connection with the development and coordination of all FHWA regulations and reviews directives and rulemaking actions for legal sufficiency and compliance with applicable Federal laws, Executive Orders, and regulations, including providing a counsel to serve as the Federal Regulations Officer.

    4. Alternative Dispute Resolution and Negotiations.   Provides legal advice, support, and other services to facilitate dispute resolution, including alternatives to litigation, and in the development of consensual rulemaking, including, as appropriate, negotiated rulemaking.

    5. Infrastructure.   Provides legal advice and services in connection with all matters relating to highway, pavement, and bridge engineering and related activities, including design, financing, and construction. Provides legal advice and services in connection with compliance with Federal civil rights laws, disadvantaged business enterprise programs, and Federal labor requirements on Federal-aid highway projects.

    6. Planning, Environment, and Real Estate.   Provides legal advice and services, including litigation support, in connection with environmental, social, and economic aspects of the Federal-aid Highway Program, and the application of all environmental laws relating to the program. Provides legal advice and services relative to statewide and metropolitan planning, land acquisition, land use, condemnation, control of right-of-way, airspace utilization, and relocation assistance.

    7. Operations.   Provides legal advice and services related to operations matters, including issues related to Intelligent Transportation Systems, the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, and vehicle size and weight.

    8. Research, Development, and Technology.   Provides legal advice and services related to research, development, and technology, including issues related to technology transfer.

    9. Safety.   Provides legal advice and services related to Federal-aid highway safety programs, including the Hazard Elimination Program and the Highway/Rail Safety Crossing Program; and safety programs jointly administered with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, including the review of the States' compliance with Federal requirements dealing with minimum drinking age, seat belt use, open containers, and repeat intoxicated drivers.

    10. Federal Lands/Native American Issues.   Provides legal advice and services on Federal Lands and Native American issues with regard to the Federal Lands and Federal-aid Highway Programs, including the application of environmental laws and regulations, planning, infrastructure, and Traditional Cultural Properties issues.

    11. Border Crossings and International Activities.   Provides legal advice on all North American Free Trade Agreement and border crossing activities, including issues relating to freight movement. Provides legal advice regarding international agreements.

    12. Administration.   Provides legal advice and services, including litigation representation and support, in connection with internal personnel, civil rights, ethics, and contract issues. Performs legal services with regard to authorizations, apportionments, appropriations, limitations, and related budgetary and fiscal matters, including preparation of certificates of apportionment to implement authorizations. Provides legal advice in connection with public access to government information, including under the Freedom of Information Act. Upon request, provides legal services to FHWA's Office of Acquisition Management regarding its administration of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements.

    13. Fiscal Services.   Provides legal assistance regarding determinations of eligibility for Federal funding, authorizations, apportionments, appropriations, limitations, and related budgetary and fiscal matters, including preparation of certificates of apportionment to implement authorizations. Provides legal advice and services related to traditional and innovative financing of highway projects.

Section 2. Legislation and Regulations Division

  1. What is the mission of the Legislation and Regulations Division? To provide legal advice and services regarding all aspects of FHWA legislative and regulatory programs.

  2. What are the functions of the Legislation and Regulations Division?

    1. Advocacy.   Serves as an advocate for issues and programs involving legislation and regulations.

    2. Legislative Functions.   Provides Headquarters offices with all legal services and coordinates all activities in connection with the FHWA's legislative program, including drafting legislation and preparing comments on pending bills. Drafts legislative proposals, prepares reports on legislation, prepares testimony, and responds to congressional inquiries involving legislative matters; attends congressional hearings and other congressional staff meetings to assist committees and DOT witnesses, and provides technical assistance to Congress, its committees, and staff. Develops, with the assistance of Headquarters offices, appropriate comments on bills, proposed bills, and resolutions as they affect the FHWA and its programs.

    3. Regulatory Functions.   Provides Headquarters offices with legal advice and services in connection with the development and coordination of all FHWA regulations and reviews directives and rulemaking actions for legal sufficiency and compliance with applicable Federal laws, Executive Orders, and regulations. Provides a counsel to serve as the Federal Regulations Officer whose responsibilities include the preparation of FHWA's Semi-Annual Regulations Agenda and Annual Regulatory Program; and coordinates the preparation of comments to proposed regulations issued by other agencies or DOT modes which impact on FHWA's operations. Prepares material for publication in the Federal Register and coordinates the rulemaking process with the Office of the General Counsel, the Office of Management and Budget, and the Office of the Federal Register.

    4. Alternative Dispute Resolution and Negotiations.   Provides legal advice, support, and other services to facilitate dispute resolution, including alternatives to litigation, and in the development of consensual rulemaking, including, as appropriate, negotiated rulemaking.

    5. Automated Legal Services/Systems.   Acts as the lead division in the Office of Chief Counsel for computerized legal services; operates a computerized Legislative Tracking System; and maintains computerized legal precedent files.

    6. Law Library.   Maintains the Chief Counsel's Law Library, and coordinates with the DOT Law Library.

Section 3. Program Legal Services Division

  1. What is the mission of the Program Legal Services Division? To provide legal advice and services relating to external matters to Headquarters offices, where appropriate.

  2. What are the functions of the Program Legal Services Division?

    1. Advocacy.   Serves as an advocate for issues and programs involving planning, environment, infrastructure, safety, and other issues where appropriate.

    2. Planning, Environment, and Realty.   Provides legal services in connection with environmental, social, and economic aspects of the Federal-aid and Federal Lands Highway Programs, and the application of all planning and environmental laws to those programs. Provides legal services in matters related to the Highway Beautification Program (outdoor advertising and junkyard control). Provides legal services relative to land acquisition, land use, condemnation, control of rights-of-way, airspace utilization, and relocation assistance. Provides legal services arising from FHWA's role as lead Federal agency under the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970, as amended.

    3. Infrastructure.   Provides legal services in connection with contract matters and compliance with Federal civil rights laws, disadvantaged business enterprise programs, and Federal labor requirements on Federal-aid highway projects. Provides legal services in connection with toll roads, bridges, tunnels, and ferries. Provides legal advice and services related to current and innovative financing of highway projects. Provides legal services associated with Federal-aid suspensions and debarments, and infrastructure-related Federal tort matters (including assistance to counsel located in the field). Provides legal services in connection with the Emergency Relief Program.

    4. Safety.   Provides legal advice and services related to Federal-aid highway safety programs, such as the Hazard Elimination Program, the Highway/Rail Safety Crossing Program, and those safety programs jointly administered with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, including the review of States' compliance with Federal requirements.

    5. Operations.   Provides legal advice and services related to the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, and truck size and weight limits.

    6. Fiscal Services.   Provides legal advice regarding determinations of eligibility for Federal funding, authorizations, Federal-aid apportionments, limitations, and related external budgetary and fiscal matters.

    7. Environmental and Other Litigation.   Provides legal services in connection with litigation involving planning, environment, real estate, infrastructure, safety, and other external matters.

    8. Other Matters.   Provides legal advice and services related to other matters which are assigned by the Chief Counsel or Deputy Chief Counsel.

Section 4. Administrative and Technology Law Division

  1. What is the mission of the Administrative and Technology Law Division? To provide legal advice and services on administrative and internal matters to the Agency's Headquarters offices.

  2. What are the functions of the Administrative and Technology Law Division?

    1. Advocacy.   Serves as an advocate for issues and programs involving the Offices of Operations; Administration; Research, Development, and Technology (RD&T); Policy; Corporate Management; Professional Development; and Civil Rights.

    2. Operations.   Provides legal services related to Intelligent Transportation Systems.

    3. RD&T.   Provides legal services related to research, development, and technology.

    4. International Programs and Activities.   Provides legal advice and services in connection with international transportation and technological matters, and international agreements.

    5. Administration.   Provides legal advice and services in connection with: immigration matters; garnishments and bankruptcies (including assistance to counsel in the field); nonInfrastructure-related Federal Torts and employee personal loss claims; internal personnel and civil rights matters; contracts and procurement, cooperative agreements such as cooperative research and development agreements, and grants; copyrights, patents, and trademark matters; suspension and debarment actions under the Federal Acquisition Regulations; ethics, conflict of interest, and anti-lobbying; and appropriations and internal fiscal and budget matters. Upon request, provides legal services to FHWA's Office of Acquisition Management regarding its administration of FMCSA contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements.

    6. Legislation and Regulations.   Provides assistance to the Legislation and Regulations Division regarding legislation and regulations involving matters relating to the Administrative and Technology Law Division's area of responsibility.

    7. Employee Witness Testimony.   Provides advice and legal services regarding the testimony of FHWA employees as witnesses in certain proceedings.

    8. Government Information Laws.   Provides advice and legal services associated with the administration, interpretation, and implementation of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the Privacy Act, the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the Hatch Act, and other laws relating to public access to government information.

    9. General Litigation.   Provides advice and legal services in connection with litigation involving operations, administrative matters, and international matters.

    10. Alternative Dispute Resolution and Negotiations.   Provides legal advice, support, and other services to facilitate dispute resolution, including alternatives to litigation.

    11. Other Assignments.   Handles other duties as assigned by the Chief Counsel and the Deputy Counsel, or their designee.

Section 5. Field Legal Services Divisions (Eastern, Southern, Midwestern, Western)

  1. What is the mission of the Field Legal Services Divisions? To provide legal advice and services, including litigation services, to the FHWA resource centers and division offices.

  2. What are the functions of the Field Legal Services Divisions?

    1. Advocacy.   Serves as an advocate for issues and programs involving resource centers and division offices, and serves as agency counsel in litigation arising from these organizations.

    2. Litigation.   Provides legal services in connection with litigation involving subject matters assigned to the Division.

    3. Planning, Environment, and Real Estate.   Provides legal advice and services in connection with environmental, social, and economic aspects of the Federal-aid program, and the application of all environmental and planning laws to those programs, including providing legal sufficiency reviews of Environmental Impact Statements. Provides legal advice and services relative to land acquisition, land use, condemnation, control of rights-of-way, airspace utilization, and relocation assistance.

    4. Safety.   Provides legal advice and services relating to highway safety programs. Reviews State certifications or compliance status with FHWA safety programs.

    5. Operations.   Provides legal advice and services in administrative proceedings involving size and weight. Reviews States' size and weight laws. Provides legal advice and services to field offices on operational issues.

    6. Infrastructure.   Provides legal advice and services regarding Federal-aid contract administration, including suspensions and debarments.

    7. Administration.   Provides legal advice and services involving internal Agency matters such as personnel, ethics, civil rights, and FOIA issues.

    8. Garnishments, Bankruptcy, and other Collection Matters.   Provides legal review and services relating to processing of garnishment, bankruptcy, and other collection matters involving field employees.

Section 6. Federal Lands Legal Services Team (Eastern, Central, Western)

  1. What is the mission of the Federal Lands Legal Services Team? To provide legal advice and services, including litigation services, to the Office of Federal Lands Highway and to the Federal Lands Highway Division offices. To provide legal advice and services relating to Native American matters.

  2. What are the functions of the Federal Lands Legal Services Team?

    1. Advocacy.   Serves as an advocate for issues and programs involving the Federal Lands Highway Program, and serves as agency counsel in litigation pertaining to the program.

    2. Litigation.   Provides legal services in connection with litigation involving subject matters assigned to the Team.

    3. Planning, Environment, and Real Estate.   Provides legal advice and services in connection with environmental, social, and economic aspects of the Federal Lands Highway programs, and the application of all environmental and planning laws to those programs, including providing legal sufficiency reviews of Environmental Impact Statements. Provides legal advice and services relative to land acquisition, land use, condemnation, control of rights-of-way, airspace utilization, and relocation assistance.

    4. Infrastructure.   Provides legal advice and services regarding Federal Lands Highway contract administration, including contract formation and modification, claims, suspensions, and debarments.

    5. Administration.   Provides legal advice and services involving internal Agency matters such as personnel, ethics, civil rights, and FOIA issues.

    6. Operations.   Provides legal advice and services on operational issues.

    7. Federal Lands/Native American Issues.   Provides legal advice and services on Federal Lands and Native American issues with regard to the Federal Lands and Federal-aid Highway Programs, including the application of environmental laws and regulations, planning, infrastructure, and Traditional Cultural Properties issues.

OFFICE OF THE CHIEF COUNSEL

Office of the Cheif Counsel Org Chart, click for text version

* The Federal Lands Legal Services Team provides legal advice and services, including litigation services, to the Office of Federal Lands Highway and to the Federal Lands Highway Divisions. The team provides legal advice and services relating to Native American matters.

Figure 9-1

Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000