BOT 611: Responsible Contractor Policy

Michigan State University is committed to having responsible and ethical contractors and subcontractors on its construction projects. To achieve that goal, the University will take the following steps.

Contractor Qualifications

The University will obtain information from and about the contractors on its major construction projects. Depending on the extent of the University's prior experience with a contractor, that information may include:

  • The contractor's experience on projects of similar size and complexity.
  • References from other owners.
  • The contractor's creditworthiness/financial condition.
  • The contractor's safety record and prior history of OSHA/MIOSHA, environmental, or other regulatory violations, discrimination claims, prevailing wage violations, criminal convictions, liens, and litigation (including arbitrations) with owners, contractors', subcontractors, unions, or employees.
  • Qualifications of management and supervisory personnel to be assigned by the contractor to the project.
  • Access to labor necessary for contract performance.

Contract Specifications

Contracts for the University's major construction projects will include terms requiring:

  • Compliance with all applicable health, safety and environmental laws and regulations during performance of the contract, and timely provision to the University of copies of any complaint or allegation of a violation of any such regulation, and of any accident report, relating to work performed under the contract.
  • Contractors and subcontractors to maintain and make available to the University, upon request, documentation of compliance with the Michigan Prevailing Wage Act, including certified payroll reports and complete payroll records.
  • Training for all workers assigned to perform work under the project, including any required OSHA/MIOSHA training.
  • Registration of apprentices in bona fide training programs consistent with Prevailing Wage Act requirements.
  • Contractors and subcontractors to implement and take steps to enforce a requirement that workers on the project be drug and alcohol free on the job site.
  • Promotion of work force and contractor diversity to the fullest degree permitted by law, including prohibition of illegal discrimination and violation of the University's Anti-Discrimination Policy.
  • Promotion of competition through small business development, by encouraging opportunities for qualified new and small businesses, including those owned by women and minorities, to participate in work under the contract, as contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers.
  • Contractors and subcontractors to carry appropriate liability insurance in amounts established by the University's Office of Risk Management and Insurance; to comply with Michigan law on worker's compensation; to provide bid, payment, and performance bonds for the completion of the contracted work; and to maintain these coverages through the period specified by the Office of Risk Management and Insurance.
  • Compliance with licensing requirements applicable to those assigned to perform work under the contract.

Work Force Management

On its major construction projects, the University will seek evidence that each successful contractor is able to furnish skilled tradespersons and laborers (a) in numbers sufficient to complete the work under the contract on a timely and cost effective basis, and (b) who are able to work in harmony with the employees of other contractors or subcontractors performing work on that project in order to achieve its completion on a timely and cost effective basis.

In that regard, the University will not discourage a contractor from entering into a project labor agreement (PLA) for a construction project at the University when the contractor determines that a PLA will enhance its ability to perform the work on the project. Further, the Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer is authorized to require the successful contractor to enter into a PLA when doing so would advance MSU's project-specific interests in cost savings, efficiency, timeliness, or quality and would promote the institutional goals set forth in this Policy. The Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer should not require a contractor to enter into a PLA on any project or part of a project when doing so would unreasonably restrict competition in the contracting or subcontracting process.


For purposes of this Policy:

  1. a "major construction project" is a construction or other real property improvement or maintenance project whose planning and implementation require Board of Trustees approval under Board Policy 02-06-01, “Construction and Other Real Property Improvements: Project Planning and Approval".
  2. a "contractor" includes a construction manager and a design builder.

Enacted 2/22/08

Amended 9/10/21

Retired Policy No. 02-06-06