Section 2: Required Legal Documents

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This section covers the following required preparation and paperwork topics:

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The next subsections discuss these aspects of agreements:

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Agreement Description

Agreements must be executed between the department and other governmental entities when any of the following are true:

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  • Funds are provided by another agency.
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  • Other agencies agree to maintain the facility.
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  • Other agencies or private companies will construct facilities (e.g. driveways, utilities, etc.) on state right-of-way through their local government.
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  • The department works on property other than its own right-of-way (e.g. railroad crossings).
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  • Local entity is to let and/or manage construction or performs construction with its own workers.

Agreements between the department and these agencies are considered an important part of the complete PS&E for a project. Agreements are legally binding documents which must be accurate and in accordance with department policy.

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Agreement Deadline

It is essential that all agreements are executed before any work (PS&E and construction) is performed. Negotiating agreements is a time-consuming process and should be initiated as early as possible. Funding agreements should be based on an engineer’s sound estimate.

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Local Agency Agreements

If a local agency desires to let/manage construction or perform any of the construction with its own workers, it must initiate discussion with the local TxDOT district office to receive a thorough explanation of the department’s expectations and submit a written request. The local agency must clearly understand what will be required so the project is not unduly delayed during project development and requirements can be included in the written agreement. For more information, see the Local Government Projects page on the TxDOT website.

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Agreement Information References

For more discussion of agreements, refer to the Project Development Process Manual. For assistance in the preparation of various types of agreements, contact the Contract Services Office.

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Memorandum of Understanding or Memorandum of Agreement

Some projects may be governed by a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) or a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA). A MOU/MOA is an executed understanding between TxDOT and other state and federal agencies. They are usually used to expedite the review process and minimize the required documentation for such items as:

Agencies with which the department has a MOU/MOA include:

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Regulatory agencies have permitting requirements for proposed construction activities. Some of the conditions which will require these permits appear in Table 1-1.

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Permitting Agency

Responsible Office

Changing 100-year floodplain level

Conditional Letter of Map Revision (CLOMR) is needed before construction, and Letter of Map Revision (LOMR) is needed after construction

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

District through DES-Hydraulics

Planning a project near an airport, heliport, or seaport

Construction or use of an object taller than 200 ft

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

District coordination with the FAA

When affecting waters of the U.S. (Section 404 permit)

U.S. Corps of Engineers


Bridges over navigable waters of the U.S. (Section 10 permit)

U.S. Corps of Engineers (Environmental Impact on Waterway)


Bridges over navigable waters of U.S. (U.S. Coast Guard Permit)

U.S. Coast Guard (Clearance concerns only)


When construction will disturb five or more acres of soil area (NPDES General Permit)

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

District Design or Construction Office

Building or changing vertical clearance to less than 16 ft. (4.9 m) on interstate highways

Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) or the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD)

District through DES Field Coordination Section

Planning an international bridge (Presidential Permit through TxDOT)

U.S. Department of State

Approval from Transportation Planning and Programming Division prior to submitting application to U.S. Department of State

Changing (water elevation) gauging stations

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)

District through DES-Hydraulics

Notification of well plugging/capping

Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ)


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