Wednesday, January 24, 2018

DBE Workshop Jan 31st & Feb 1st

The 2018 DBE workshop will be held Wednesday January 31st and Thursday February 1st at the Iowa DOT complex in Ames, Iowa.  The workshop is free to DBE companies and their employees.  Please sign-up at the Iowa DOT website -  An agenda can be found here - 2018 DBE Workshop Agenda.   I hope to see you all there.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

New Wage Rates

For the January 17, 2018 letting the predetermined wage rates will be changed by addendum.  Bidx has the new wage posted on their website.  I have copied them and provided links below.

Below are some other Davis Bacon forms you might find useful.

Fringe Benefits

Friday, November 17, 2017

Federal Biz Opps

Federal agencies are required to advertise all opportunities over $25,000 on a website called or  This site has been running since 2001 and I have used it to search for construction contracting and engineering work over the years.  While the site is still a little hard to navigate I do think it has gotten better over the years.  I couple of things that have helped me:
  • Use "Watched Opportunities" to save projects.  Federal jobs change project IDs and can be shelved for years.  Watched opportunities will help you find the project at a later date.
  • The site also has a search agent function that you can set up.  Put in the parameters of your search - type of work, location, agency, will search and send you an email if it finds a match.
  • will ask you to change change your password every 3 months.  Do it when you see the email notice.
One project that I found was a new 250 car parking ramp for VA hospital in Des Moines.  It is a service disabled veteran owned set aside that will be bid on Dec 5th.  The link to job on is

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Watch out for a phone scam

Iowa DBE contractors should be aware of the possibility that they may be contacted by an entity by the name of Minority Success Network from Torrance California. They will claim they can help maintain your DBE certification in Iowa. This is a scam. They can not help you. They will call you back later and demand $900 payment for publishing your company name in their online magazine. Looking at the magazine they mostly target high schools and school districts.

This is terrible. We have a hard enough time convincing owners that minority and women contracting should be taken seriously without this undermining that effort.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Downloading plans and proposal forms.

I have gotten a few calls about how to get plans off the Iowa DOT website.  Plans are located on the Iowa DOT Office of Contracts website:

After you click on the letting you click on the project you want to download.

All files are now zipped or compressed to make them smaller and quicker to download.  You need to extract the file to use them.

After you extract all files you can delete the zip folder to save space on your hard drive.

The plan and proposal forms are in a pdf file format.  You need a pdf viewer like the free Adobe Reader to open the file.  I use Bluebeam Revu which I found to be easier than Reader.