Construction Self-Performance Projects

Projects within DCM’s Jurisdiction: Any construction regardless of funding source on: state-owned property, public and private kindergarten through twelfth grade (K-12) schools, public universities, Alabama Community College System (ACCS) projects with Notices-To-Proceed issued prior to August 1, 2021, hotels/motels, and movie theaters.

When a project is within DCM’s jurisdiction and the owner intends to self-perform the construction work, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Project Verification

Verify with DCM Technical Staff, beginning with a call or email to Bob ÓReilly, Architect, 334-242-4803 or bob.o', whether or not a project requires review and/or administration (including plan review, contract document and inspections approvals) by DCM.
  • If a project is verified by Technical Staff that it does not require review or administration by DCM, consult with the Alabama Department of Finance-Division of Purchasing or use other contracting means available to the owner.

Step 2: Procedure Requirements

If an intended construction self-performance project is verified by DCM Technical Staff as required to be reviewed and/or administered by DCM, then a construction self-performance letter must be issued and requirements of the DCM Manual of Procedures must be met including contract document administration, plan review submittals and approvals, bidding, inspections, and User Fees.
Contract Document Administration (CDA)
  • Agreements between Owners and Architects (O/A Agreements) and Amendments issued for construction self-performance projects of state agencies, Public School and College Authority (PSCA)-funded projects (including ACCS projects with Notices-To-Proceed issued prior to August 1, 2021) must be submitted to DCM for review. The CDA-OA fee applies.
    • Reminder: If a state agency is subject to Contract Review Permanent Legislative Oversight Committee (CRPLOC), prior to submission of an O/A Agreement or an Amendment (adding money or time extensions) to DCM, it must first be sent by the owner to CRPLOC per CRPLOC procedures. If you are unsure whether or not a state agency is subject to CRPLOC, please consult the state agency’s legal counsel.
    • Note: Designers submit fully locally-funded K-12 school contract documents to the Alabama State Department of Education (SDE), LEA Auxiliary Services, School Facilities for full review. SDE then forwards a copy of the documents to DCM.
  • Designer’s Statement for Services for construction self-performance projects of state agencies and PSCA-funded projects (including ACCS projects with Notices-To-Proceed issued prior to August 1, 2021) must be submitted to DCM for review and processing. DCM does not review nor process fully locally-funded K-12 school project payment applications.
  • If a construction contract is issued during the course of a construction self-performance project, DCM’s CDA procedures and CDA-CC fee applies to the construction contract.
Plan Review
  • All projects within DCM's jurisdiction: Any construction plans and specifications including front-end documents must be issued by a design professional and must be submitted to DCM for review and approval, along with applicable Plan Review fees which for construction self-performance projects are based on the Owner’s expected outlay for labor and materials. All DCM front-end documents are recommended for inclusion in specifications in case a project which starts as construction self-performance develops into a project with a construction contract.
  • An owner must advertise for sealed bids before entering into any contract for a public works project in excess of $50,000.00. §39-2-2(a)
  • Any person or entity being paid $50,000.00 or more for construction work in Alabama on one project must have an Alabama General Contractor’s License. §34-8-1(a)
  • If a public works project under DCM’s jurisdiction has a construction budget of $50,000.00 or less, see Public Works Projects Costing $50,000.00 or Less webpage for allowed DCM Manual of Procedures exceptions.
  • If an owner intends to hire licensed and insured contractors (instead of the owner’s staff self-performing all work) note that although an advertisement for bids is not required by state law for public works projects costing $50,000.00 or less, the Alabama Division of Construction Management requires solicitation of at least three bids for such projects to assure that fair and reasonable prices are being paid. Documentation must show that a minimum of three proposals were sought even if a lesser number respond. The bid tab must be included with either the self-performance letter or any subsequent prepared construction contract documents.
  • If no bids or only one bid is received, or if all bids received are unreasonable, see Code of Alabama, 1975, as amended, Section 39-2-6(b-d) for guidance.
  • Municipal and County School Boards, and ACCS Institutions may purchase materials or equipment through a purchasing cooperative of the Alabama Department of Examiners of Public Accounts, but the installation labor must be considered separately. The installation labor may be self-performed, and if the owner intends to hire licensed and insured contractors see the above five Bidding bullet points in this section. Send a copy of all such paperwork to DCM including the estimated Project Cost (owner’s expected outlay for labor and materials) so that the project can be accurately documented.
Construction Self-Performance Letter, Insurance & Inspections
  • The construction self-performance letter must be on the owner’s letterhead, addressed to RPM Director Mickey Allen, and include the following: DCM project # if known, project name and location, the estimated Project Cost (owner’s expected outlay for labor and materials), a description of the project scope, and the name of the architectural or engineering firm involved with the project. The bid tab and Permit fee are due with DCM's receipt of the construction self-performance letter. A construction self-performance project’s Permit fee is based on Owner’s expected outlay for labor and materials. If the Permit fee was paid online, email the letter, bid tab, and payment receipt to If a physical check is issued to pay the Permit fee, mail the letter, bid tab, check and completed Permit Fee Worksheet to DCM’s office. Download a construction self-performance letter template - updated January 2022.
  • Owners must consult their insurance carrier and verify the insurance carried is adequate for the proposed project to cover all parties.
  • Inspections by a DCM Inspector are required. The Permit fee must be paid before scheduling the required pre-construction conference with a DCM Inspector. Benchmarks must then be met for required inspections as listed in the Pre-Construction Conference Checklist.
Sales and Use Tax Certificate of Exemption
  • A Sales and Use Tax Certificate of Exemption for a Government Entity Project administered by the Alabama Department of Revenue must be acquired separately by the Owner, General Contractor and Subcontractors per Act 2013-205 for each government entity owned project. The only projects within DCM's jurisdiction to which this does not apply are privately owned hotels/motels and movie theaters.
Project Completion
  • If a project is finished as a construction self-performance project, the two front-end documents which must be submitted to DCM at project close-out are the completed Certificate of Substantial Completion and the proof of Advertisement for Completion.
  • Final Reconciliation of User Fees: At the close of construction, the final reconciliation process recalculates each applicable basic User Fee using the actual final construction cost to determine whether any amount is due from/to the owner. As soon as the final construction self-performance Project Cost (owner’s outlay for labor and materials) is determined, the owner or the design professional must report the amount to or on DCM’s payment portal, before the year-end inspection.