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The National Academies

NCHRP 20-06 [Active]

Legal Problems Arising out of Highway Programs

  Project Data
Funds: Continuing
Staff Responsibility: Gwen Chisholm-Smith
Research Agency: TRB
Principal Investigator: James B. McDaniel
Effective Date: 11/1/1968
Comments: Hyperlinks to each LRD published since 1999 appear below (Topic 10-03 forward).

$  50,000 FY2003
$100,000 FY2004
$200,000 FY2005
$  50,000 FY2007
$100,000 FY2008
$150,000 FY2009
$300,000 annually FY2010-FY2015

Background: A major and continuing need of state highway and transportation departments involves assembling, analyzing, and evaluating operating practices, administrative procedures, and legal issues associated with highway and transportation projects. Individual state legal experiences need to be compared and made available for possible wider application. Research to identify and evaluate legal options facilitates the handling of both immediate and long-range needs of engineering, planning, and administrative aspects of transportation programs.

NCHRP Project 20-06 was established in 1968 to meet these needs. It is a continuing project under the direction of the TRB staff Counsel for Legal Research.  Numerous legal and right of way problems affecting the operations and the services and facilities provided by state transportation agencies have been researched since the beginning of the project. Results are made available to state transportation departments and other public and private agencies through publication of Legal Research Digests and Selected Studies in Transportation Law (SSTL). SSTL isjointly sponsored with TRB’s Transit Cooperative Research Program and is comprised of the following volumes:
Volume 1 Construction Contract Law (NCHRP)
Volume 2 Eminent Domain (NCHRP)            
Volume 3 Environmental Law and Transportation (NCHRP)
Volume 4 Tort Liability (NCHRP)                     
Volume 5 Transit Law (TCRP)
Volume 6 Transit Labor 13(c) Decisions (TCRP)
Volume 7 Transit Charter Bus Service: Decisions and Documents (TCRP)
Volume 8 Transportation Law and Governmental Relations (NCHRP)
 
Status: The status of each research topic appears below.
Product Availability: Individual studies completed under this project are published as NCHRP Legal Research Digests (LRD).  Hyperlinks to each LRD published since 1999 appear below (Topic 10-03 forward).  The full list of NCHRP Legal Research Digests is listed below.  For materials published prior to 1999, please see the TRB Bookstore .  Publications since 1999 are shown below with their respective project topic and a link to their material on the TRB website. 

CURRENT AND COMPLETED PROJECTS
Legal Research Digest No. 1, Continuing Project on Legal Problems Arising Out of Highway Programs, 6 p. (1988)

Legal Research Digest No. 2, Supplement To Liability of State Highway Departments for Design, Construction, and Maintenance Defects, 20 p. (1988)

Legal Research Digest No. 3, Supplement to Liability of State and Local Governments for Negligence Arising Out of the Installation and Maintenance of Warning Signs, Traffic Lights, and Pavement Markings, 10 p.  (1988)

Legal Research Digest No. 4, Supplement to Personal Liability of State Highway Department Officers and Employees, 9 p. (1988)

Legal Research Digest No. 5, Supplement to Labor Standards in Federal-Aid Highway Construction Contracts, 19 p. (1989)

Legal Research Digest No. 6, Impact of the Discretionary Function Exception on Tort Liability of State Highway Departments, 25 p. (1989)

Legal Research Digest No. 7, Liability of Public Agencies Arising Out of Rejection of Bids and Misaward of Contracts, 17 p.  (1989)

Legal Research Digest No. 8, Continuing Project on Legal Problems Arising Out of Highway Programs, 11 p.  (1989)

Legal Research Digest No. 9, Supplement to Liability of State and Local Governments for Snow and Ice Control, 11 p. (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 10, Supplement to Liability of the State for Injury-Producing Defects in Highway Surface, 10 p. (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 11, Impact of 42 U.S.C. §1983 (Civil Rights Act) On Highway Departments, Personnel, and Officials, 21 p. (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 12, Suspension, Debarment, and Disqualification of Highway Construction Contractors, 27 p.  (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 13, Civil RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act) Applications in the Highway Construction Industry, 27 p. (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 14, Supplement to Liability of State Highway Departments for Defects in Design, Construction, and Maintenance of Bridges, 10 p. (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 15, The Application of NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) to Federal Highway Projects, 22 p. (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 16, Supplement to Payment of Attorney Fees in Eminent Domain and Environmental Litigation, 17 p. (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 17, The Public Duty Defense to Tort Liability, 25 p.  (1990)

Legal Research Digest No. 18, Supplement to Planning and Precondemnation Activities as Constituting a Taking Under Inverse Law, 10 p. (1991)

Legal Research Digest No. 19, Continuing Project on Legal Problems Arising Out of Highway Programs, 11 p. (1991)

Legal Research Digest No. 20, Supplement to Legal Aspects of Historic Preservation in Highway and Transportation Programs, 40 p. (1991)

Legal Research Digest No. 21, Supplement to Liability of the State for Highway Traffic Noise, 8 p. (1991)

Legal Research Digest No. 22, Authority of State Departments of Transportation to Mitigate the Environmental Impact of Transportation Projects, 12 p. (1992)

Legal Research Digest No. 23, Supplement to Valuation Changes Resulting From Influence of Public Improvements, 21 p. (1992)

Legal Research Digest No. 24, Continuing Project on Legal Problems Arising Out of Highway Programs, 8 p.  (1992)

Legal Research Digest No. 25, Supplement to Minority and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Requirements in Public Contracting, 28 p. (1992)

Legal Research Digest No. 26, Supplement to Legal Implications of Highway Department's Failure to Comply with Design, Safety, or Maintenance Guidelines, 10 p. (1992)

Legal Research Digest No. 27, Supplement to Liability of the State for Injury or Damage Occurring in Motor Vehicle Accident Caused by Trees, Shrubbery, or Other Vegetative Obstruction
Located in Right-of-Way or Growing on Adjacent Private Property, 12 p. (1993)

Legal Research Digest No. 28, Preventing and Defending Against Highway Construction Contract Claims: The Use of Changes or Differing Site Conditions Clauses and New York State's Use of
Exculpatory Contract Provisions and No Claims Clauses, 51 p. (1993)

Legal Research Digest No. 29, Highways and the Environment: Resource Protection and the Federal Highway Program, 46 p. (1994)

Legal Research Digest No. 30, Legal Issues Relating to the Acquisition of Right of Way and the Construction and Operation of Highways over Indian Lands, 24 p. (1994)

Legal Research Digest No. 31, Federal Air Quality Laws Governing State and Regional Transportation Planning, 31 p. (1994)

Legal Research Digest No. 32, Federalism and the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991, 23 p. (1995)

Legal Research Digest No. 33, Freedom of Information Acts, Federal Data Collections, and Disclosure Statutes Applicable to Highway Projects and the Discovery Process, 28 p. (1995)

Legal Research Digest No. 34, Transportation Agencies as Potentially Responsible Parties at Hazardous Waste Sites, 29 p. (1995)

Legal Research Digest No. 35, Continuing Project on Legal Problems Arising Out of Highway Programs, 8 p.  (1995)

Legal Research Digest No. 36, Photographic Traffic Law Enforcement, 43 p.  (1996)

Legal Research Digest No. 37, Indemnification and Insurance Requirements for Design Consultants and Contractors on Highway Projects, 25 p. (1996)

Legal Research Digest No. 38, Risk Management for Transportation Programs Employing Written Guidelines as Design and Performance Standards, 22 p. (1997)

Legal Research Digest No. 39, Liability of Contractors to State Transportation Departments for Latent Defects in Construction after Project Acceptance, 14 p. (1997)

Legal Research Digest No. 40, Liability of Highway Departments for Damages Caused by Stormwater Runoff, 23 p. (1998)

Legal Research Digest No. 41, Application of Outdoor Advertising Controls on Indian Land, 31 p. (1998)
Legal Research Digest #46, Drug and Alcohol Testing—A Survey of Labor-Management Relations, 61 p. (2001)
 
20-06/10-06, Civil Rights in Transportation Projects

20-06/11-01, Selected Studies in Transportation Law, Volume 2, Eminent Domain
 

20-06/11-02, The States' Immunity From Suit in Federal and State Court

20-06/12-01, Judicial Enforcement of Variable Speed Limits

20-06/13-02, Emergency Contracting - Flexibilities in Contracting Procedures during an Emergency

20-06/14-01, Major Legal Issues for Highway Public-Private Partnerships

20-06/14-02, Current Practices in the Use of Alternative Dispute Resolution

20-06/15-01, Update of Selected Studies in Transportation Law: Volume 3, Environmental Law and Transportation

20-06/15-03, Record Keeping Requirements for State Departments of Transportation

20-06/15-04, Liability Aspects of Bikeways

20-06/16-01, Practice under the Environmental Provisions of SAFTEA-LU

20-06/16-03, Identification, Prevention, and Remedies for False Claims in Highway Improvement Contracting

20-06/20-02, Liability of Design-Builders for Design, Construction, and Acquisition Claims

20-06/Topic 17-01 Update of Selected Studies in Transportation, Volume One: Transportation Contract Law

This product is available on CD from the TRB bookstore and can be downloaded from the TRB website.

20-06/Topic 17-02 Tort Liability Defense Practices for Design Flexibility
20-06/Topic 17-03 First Responders
20-06/Topic 17-04 Legal Aspects of Performance-Based Specifications for Highway Construction and Maintenance Contracts
20-06/Topic 17-05 The Ramifications of Post-Kelo Legislation on State Transportation
20-06/Topic 18-01 Legal Aspects of Conservation Easements—A Primer for Transportation Agencies
20-06/Topic 18-02 Enforceability of Local Hire Preference Programs
20-06/Topic 18-03 Legal Issues Surrounding the Use of Digital Intellectual Property on Design and Construction Projects
20-06/Topic 19-01 Eminent Domain and Fair Market Value in a Depressed Real Estate Market
20-06/Topic 19-02 Legal Aspect of Environmental Permitting in the Emergency Response Environment

The final report was submitted in September 2014, and it is currently under for review for publication in the NCHRP Legal Research Digest series.

20-06/Topic 19-03 Effect of MUTCD on Tort Liability of Government Transportation Agencies
20-06/Topic 19-04 Use of Social Media in Transportation Agencies

Phase I, a survey of state departments of transportation, states attorneys general guidance, agency practices, reported decisions, administrative rules and guidance (to determine what they doing with the information), has been completed, and a report with the conclusions was submitted to TRB. The panel subsequently decided to proceed with Phase II which consists of further research, case and statutory/regulatory analysis, and additional primary data collection. Research is currently underway.

20-06/Topic 20-02 Liability of Design Builders for Design, Construction and Acquisition Claims

20-06/Topic 20-03 Permissible Arranges in Scope of Work for Construction Contracts

20-06/Topic 20-04 Due Diligence for Insurance Coverage in Transportation Construction Contracts

20-06/Topic 21-01 A Look at the Legal Environment for Driverless Vehicles

20-06/Topic 21-02 Claims Related to Stormwater Discharges

20-06/Topic 21-03 Takings and Mitigation

20-06/Topic 21-04 Liability of Transportation Entity for the Unintentional Release of Secure Data or the Intentional Release of Monitoring Data on Movements or Activities of the Public

20-06/Topic 22-01 Legal Requirements for State DOT Participation in Conservation Plans

20-06/Topic 22-02 Liability of State Departments of Transportation for Design Errors

20-06/Topic 22-03 Primer on Patentability and Use of Ideas Developed by Contractors Performing Work for State and Federal Transportation and Local Planning Agencies

20-06/Topic 22-04 Summary of Federal Law Restricting Use of Highway Safety Data in Tort Litigation

20-06/Topic 23-01 Condemnation Hierarchy-Competing Public Uses

20-06/Topic 23-04 The Effectiveness of State False Claims Acts in Protecting State Transportation Funding

20-06/Topic 23-05 Update of Selected Studies in Transportation Law: Volume Eight, Section 3: Indian Transportation Law

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