Chapter 2.10


Article I. General Provisions

2.10.010    Policy overview.

2.10.020    Standardization.

2.10.030    Ethical standards.

2.10.040    Vendor relations.

2.10.050    Gifts and special consideration.

2.10.060    Conflict of interest – Actual or potential.

2.10.070    Unauthorized purchases.

2.10.080    Competitive procurement.

2.10.090    Waiver of competitive bidding.

2.10.100    Record retention.

2.10.110    Vendor lists.

2.10.120    Credit card/purchasing card usage policy.

2.10.130    Sole source procurement.

2.10.140    Local business participation in District public contracts and encourage businesses to hire locally in District public contracts.

2.10.150    Notice to Board and District Counsel.

Article II. Goods and Materials – Service and Construction Contracts

2.10.160    Purchase limits.

2.10.170    Purchase of goods under $3,000.

2.10.180    Purchase of goods over $3,000.

2.10.190    Purchase of goods over $15,000.

2.10.200    Competitive bidding not required.

2.10.210    Offer and acceptance.

2.10.220    Solicitation of quotes, bids, and proposals.

2.10.230    Informal requests for quotes.

2.10.240    Informal requests for proposals.

2.10.250    Oral purchase commitments.

2.10.260    Formal bid procedures.

2.10.270    Cooperative purchases.

2.10.280    Procedures for purchasing fixed assets.

2.10.290    Receiving and payment for purchase.

2.10.300    Receiving goods from a common carrier.

2.10.310    Inspection and testing.

2.10.320    Acceptance of delivery.

2.10.330    Payment.

2.10.340    Rejection of deliveries.

2.10.350    Damaged merchandise.

2.10.360    Surplus property – Transfer, sale, and disposal.

2.10.370    Department notification of surplus property.

2.10.380    Movement and storage of surplus property.

2.10.390    Disposal of surplus property.

2.10.400    Prohibition against purchase by employees.

2.10.410    Trade-in allowance.

2.10.420    Proceeds from disposition of surplus property.

2.10.430    Contact with vendors.

2.10.440    Use of purchase order requests.

2.10.450    Consolidation of requests.

2.10.460    Specifications.

2.10.470    Specifications and sole source defined.

2.10.480    Review of specifications.

2.10.490    Vendor assistance in writing specifications.

2.10.500    Approved equal.

2.10.510    Emergency expenditures.

2.10.520    Purchase orders.

2.10.530    Exceptions to using purchase orders.

2.10.540    Distribution of purchase orders.

2.10.550    Changing purchase orders.

2.10.560    Professional service contracts – Definitions and award authority.

2.10.570    Criteria for consultant contracts.

2.10.580    Contract term, extension and amendment.

2.10.590    Incremental contracting.

2.10.600    Review by Sanitary District Counsel and Safety Officer.

2.10.610    Contracts over $15,000.

2.10.620    Vendor selection.

2.10.630    Conflict of interest.

2.10.640    Procedures.

2.10.650    Duplicate originals.

2.10.660    Change orders.

2.10.670    Formal bidding procedures.

2.10.680    Competitive bids on construction.

2.10.690    Quotations for construction work.

2.10.700    Informal bidding procedures applicable to construction contracts between $30,000 and $125,000.

2.10.710    Competitive bids not required when.

2.10.720    Force account.

2.10.730    Emergencies permitting construction contracts to be awarded without advertising.

2.10.740    Reduced requirements for maintenance work of $25,000 or less.

2.10.750    Evaluation philosophy.

2.10.760    Evaluation panel.

2.10.770    Evaluation criteria.

2.10.780    Request for proposals – Procedural checklist.

2.10.790    Drafting the RFP.

2.10.800    Construction approval by Board prior to notice.

2.10.810    General notice of call for proposals.

2.10.820    Receipt, opening, and recording of proposals.

2.10.830    Evaluation of proposals.

2.10.840    Discussions with offerors and revisions to proposals.

2.10.850    Contract negotiation.

2.10.860    Intent to award.

2.10.870    Competitive sealed bidding – Invitation for bids.

2.10.880    Conditions for use.

2.10.890    Public notice.

2.10.900    Preparation of bid specifications.

2.10.910    Bid documents.

2.10.920    Substitutions.

2.10.930    Bid addenda.

2.10.940    Bidders’ conference.

2.10.950    Procurement schedule and bid opening date.

2.10.960    Form of bid.

2.10.970    Bid security.

2.10.980    Receipt of bids.

2.10.990    Bid opening.

2.10.1000    Correction and withdrawal of bids.

2.10.1010    Bid evaluation.

2.10.1020    Reservation of right to reject bids and/or require rebid.

2.10.1030    Bid award.

2.10.1040    Cancellation of bid award.

2.10.1050    Records.

2.10.1060    Tie bids.

Prior legislation: Ords. 66-1 and 96-3; Resos. 95-9 and 2016-11; unnumbered document adopted 2/23/2017.

Article I. General Provisions

2.10.010 Policy overview.

(1) Purpose. The purpose of this chapter is to provide clarification and guidance regarding the policies and practices relating to procurement of goods and professional services for all Sanitary District No. 5 of Marin County staff and to assure continuity, uniformity, and fairness in the application of such policies and practices. Because this chapter is designed primarily to assist those Sanitary District employees who have been assigned purchasing duties or delegated purchasing authority, it is important for this chapter to be maintained current and up-to-date. To this end, as revisions or supplements are issued by the District Manager, the holder of each copy of this chapter is responsible to see that these items are included in his or her copy.

This chapter covers:

(a) The purchase of supplies, equipment and administrative or professional services.

(b) The selection of vendors and service providers.

(c) The process for removing unused or obsolete items from the Sanitary District inventory.

(d) Record retention.

(2) Finance Department. The Finance Department is generally responsible for coordinating and managing the procurement of all Sanitary District goods, services and equipment in accordance with these policies and procedures. The policies and procedures contained in this chapter shall apply to purchases made by all Sanitary District employees.

The Finance Department is authorized to prepare procedural guidelines, forms, and flow charts to clarify and/or amplify the provisions throughout this chapter, and to promulgate and enforce compliance with such. Administrative revisions to correct typographical errors, sequential numbering, or change the formatting of text, consistent with the original intent of the Board, are also authorized.

(3) Finance Department Staff. The Finance Department is staffed by the District Manager (Purchasing Agent), and the Office Manager.

(a) Resources. Finance Department staff serve as a resource to Sanitary District employees, by providing information concerning market conditions and appropriate procedures for procuring the goods, supplies and services required by the Sanitary District. Using them as a resource from the outset will often result in faster service, higher quality purchases, and lower costs.

(b) Assistance. District employees are encouraged to seek the assistance of Finance Department staff as early in the purchasing process as possible in order to best realize the benefits provided by the Finance Department. For example, the Finance Department can provide the following helpful services:

(i) Suggest products or services to meet needs.

(ii) Provide information on available funds.

(iii) Investigate alternatives, including the advantages, disadvantages and cost.

(iv) Advise on purchasing procedures and compliance requirements.

Employees are encouraged to contact the Finance Department to obtain assistance; however, employees may contact vendors directly for general information on products and services, and to obtain informal quotes (see Article II of this chapter). Care must be taken by employees to not share information received from one vendor with other vendors. Doing so may compromise competition. Again, if it is necessary to contact a vendor, a Finance Department member can assist. District personnel should always keep the Finance Department informed and involved in any purchasing discussions or activities with a vendor.

(4) Purchasing Agent. The District Manager heads the Finance Department. In normal day-to-day operations, the District Manager shall have responsibility and authority for implementing the policies and procedures in this chapter, and as such shall serve as Purchasing Agent.

(5) Authority and Responsibility. The Purchasing Agent is charged with the authority and responsibility for coordinating and managing the procurement of goods, equipment, and services according to applicable law, regulation and policy.

Under the direction and supervision of the Purchasing Agent, the Sanitary District Office Manager is authorized to act as an agent for the Sanitary District in procuring property and services for the Sanitary District.

Only the Board of Directors itself and the District Manager, or his/her designee, may commit Sanitary District funds for the purchase of any goods, equipment or services for Sanitary District benefit; and, except in cases of emergency as hereinafter provided, or in cases where the Board or this chapter has made specific provision, no purchase of property by any governing body or person other than the Board of Directors, the Purchasing Agent, or their designee shall be binding on the Sanitary District or constitute a lawful charge against Sanitary District funds.

(6) District Manager Provision. The District Manager has a purchasing authority for all budgeted funds for goods and equipment only, not to exceed $15,000 per transaction, subject to those terms and conditions identified in Article II of this chapter.

Any further delegation of authority and responsibility shall be in writing and shall precisely describe the extent thereof.

Purchasing authority for services, at any dollar level, is reserved to the District Manager only.

The District Manager may restrict any aspect of this provision, at his or her discretion, if they determine that it is in the best interest of the District.

(7) Purchasing Responsibilities. To effectively perform the purchasing function, the Purchasing Agent, and through him/her the Finance Department, is charged with the following specific responsibilities:

(a) Monitor and coordinate Sanitary District purchases or leases of all materials, supplies, services, furnishings, equipment and other property in accordance with rules and regulations prescribed by Sanitary District ordinances, resolutions, these policies and procedures, and those otherwise provided for by law.

(b) Maintain open, honest, helpful, and cooperative communication with employees, which shall include: leadership in purchasing related activity, developing awareness in and among other employees regarding purchasing policies/procedures and the rationale behind them, information on market conditions and new products or services, and training on these same purchasing policies/procedures.

(c) Negotiate, purchase, and contract for required goods and services from responsible vendors in a manner consistent with sound professional purchasing practices, employing formal or informal competitive bidding when required by law or, when discretionary under the applicable laws and regulations, whenever such competitive procedures are determined by the Finance Department to be in the Sanitary District’s best interest.

(d) Follow up on, expedite and resolve purchasing problems as necessary.

(e) Consolidate orders for like items, ensuring quantity discount pricing whenever possible.

(f) Assist employees with research and recommendations in developing specifications, including reviewing the specifications for completeness of information and open and competitive language.

(g) Identify, evaluate and utilize purchasing arrangements that best meet the needs of the Sanitary District (for example, cooperative purchases, blanket orders, contractual agreements, etc.).

(h) Learn and implement current practices and developments concerning purchasing, prices, market conditions, and new products.

(i) Obtain the highest quality goods consistent with operational needs at the price and under the conditions most advantageous to the Sanitary District.

(j) Establish and coordinate vendor relations, catalogs, files and other records required for performance of assigned duties, and evaluate vendor performance.

(k) Develop and maintain all forms, records and files necessary for legal and efficient operation of the purchasing function.

Whenever appropriate, standardize products that are utilized by Sanitary District employees. See SD5MCC 2.10.020.

(8) Staff Responsibilities. Sanitary District employees are charged with the following responsibilities in the purchasing process:

(a) Maintain open communications with the Purchasing Agent or his/her staff.

(b) Anticipate requirements sufficiently in advance to allow the Finance Department adequate time to obtain goods or services in accordance with the best purchasing practices.

(c) Monitor and inform the Finance Department of any vendor relations problems, shipping problems (e.g., damaged goods, late delivery, wrong items delivered, incorrect quantity, etc.) and any other purchasing problems so that a follow-up can be initiated promptly and the problem resolved.

(d) Submit written purchase orders for the purchase of goods and services with appropriate management signature and account codes. Prepare purchase orders carefully and properly in accordance with training and instructions so as to minimize administrative time required to process purchase orders.

(e) Provide detailed and accurate specifications to ensure that the goods obtained meet expectations and requirements.

(f) Minimize emergency and sole source purchases, providing written justification for and maintaining written records of such purchases when they are necessary.

(g) Assist in maintaining up-to-date lists of interested and qualified vendors.

(h) Communicate and coordinate with the Finance Department prior to requesting demonstrations of goods or equipment from vendors. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.020 Standardization.

The Finance Department shall be responsible for standardization. Standardization is the organized process of obtaining solutions to common problems by establishing agreement on specific quality, design, size, etc., thereby minimizing training and repair demands. The established product is called a standard.

The Sanitary District purchases many products that are standardized (i.e., vehicles, service equipment, pipes and fittings, safety equipment, office equipment, stationery, and computers). When standards have been adopted by the Finance Department, only the items meeting those standards are to be purchased. No standard is meant to be unchangeable, however, and each standard is subject to continuous review. Suggestions for changes in existing standards and suggestions for establishment of new standards should be submitted to the Finance Department. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.030 Ethical standards.

In order to promote governmental integrity and to guard against even the appearance of impropriety, all Sanitary District employees engaged in any vendor-related activity shall comply with the following standards of ethical conduct:

(1) Sanitary District employees shall discharge their duties impartially so as to assure fair access to governmental procurement by responsible vendors and service providers and to foster public confidence in the integrity of the Sanitary District procurement system.

(2) Sanitary District employees shall not solicit, demand, accept or agree to accept a gratuity or an offer of employment in connection with any decision, approval, disapproval, recommendation, or preparation of any part of a program requirement, specification, standard or contract.

(3) Sanitary District employees shall not participate directly or indirectly in procurement when the employee knows that any of the following exists:

(a) The employee or any member of the employee’s immediate family has a personal financial interest pertaining to the procurement.

(b) A business or organization in which the employee, or any member of the employee’s immediate family, has a personal financial interest, is involved in the procurement.

(c) Any other person, business or organization with which the employee or any member of the employee’s immediate family is negotiating or has an arrangement concerning prospective employment is involved in the procurement. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.040 Vendor relations.

The Sanitary District’s suppliers and their products, personnel, and services are a natural extension of the Sanitary District’s own resources. It is the responsibility of all Sanitary District employees to work to maintain the good name of the Sanitary District, and to develop good relations between the Sanitary District and its suppliers. In personal contacts with vendors, each employee represents the Sanitary District and should reflect and present the interests and needs of all Sanitary District personnel. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.050 Gifts and special consideration.

Sanitary District employees, officers, or officials by virtue of their positions shall not be entitled to any special consideration from vendors or merchants in their personal affairs nor shall they attempt in their official capacities to procure goods, supplies, equipment or services for the private use of any other person, including any employee, officer, or official of the Sanitary District.

Sanitary District employees shall not accept gifts, entertainment, or anything of more than nominal value from vendors or potential vendors. Examples of acceptable gifts might include pencils, scratch pads, calendars, or cards. Food, candies, or flowers must be of a nature which can be shared at a public counter.

The acceptance of any gratuity in the form of cash, merchandise, or anything of value by an official or employee of the Sanitary District is prohibited. The offer of any such gratuity to any official or employee of the Sanitary District by any vendor may be cause for declaring such individual or firm to be an irresponsible vendor and debarring such vendor from bidding or otherwise doing business with the Sanitary District, at the discretion of the Purchasing Agent, subject to the opportunity to appeal first to the Board of Directors. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.060 Conflict of interest – Actual or potential.

Upon discovery of an actual or potential conflict of interest, an employee shall promptly withdraw from further participation in the transaction involved. Sanitary District Counsel should be consulted for an opinion whenever there is any question or even an appearance of conflict of interest. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.070 Unauthorized purchases.

Unauthorized purchases are not considered an obligation of the Sanitary District and the individual making such purchases may be held personally liable for the cost of the purchase. An unauthorized purchase may include any of the following:

(1) Any purchase that does not meet the guidelines outlined in this chapter.

(2) Any purchase for personal use.

(3) Any obvious circumvention of delegated purchasing authority or the purchase of items specifically identified as exempt from delegated purchasing (i.e., fixed assets).

(4) Items purchased not in annual budget are subject to Board approval. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.080 Competitive procurement.

The District is committed to a program of active competition in the purchase of goods and services. No specifications for the purchase of goods or services shall be written in such a manner as to limit bidding directly, or indirectly, to any one specific vendor, or any one specified brand or product, except for those items that are approved as standards, are exempt from competitive bidding requirements by law, or are approved as “sole manufacturer” or “sole source” purchases as provided for in this chapter.

All purchases for goods and services will be made through open competition to the maximum extent feasible as determined by the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee and by whatever methods and procedures, formal or informal, that are determined by the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee to best meet the goals and objectives detailed in this chapter.

The Finance Department may reject any and all bids received if the Department determines that the price, terms or surrounding circumstances of the bid or proposal are such that an award would not be in the best interests of the Sanitary District. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.090 Waiver of competitive bidding.

In instances where there are limitations on the source of supply, necessary restrictions in specifications, approved standards, quality considerations, or other valid reasons for waiving competitive bidding, purchases may be made without competitive bidding. Approval of waiver of competitive bidding shall be made by the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee, or by the Board of Directors in accordance with all relevant local/State/Federal laws, regulations or Sanitary District ordinances. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.100 Record retention.

In accordance with Cal. Gov’t Code § 25501.5, please see Appendix C attached to the document codified in this chapter for the structured detail of SD5’s records retention policy.

(1) Access to Financial Records and Accounting Systems. At least two District employees (or one District employee and one Board member) shall have access to the District’s financial systems’ passwords and be able to access all files, accounting records, and financial models. This is so that, in case of an emergency, there is more than one person that can access the District’s financial information and systems. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.110 Vendor lists.

Finance may compile and maintain lists of vendors for various classes of commodities commonly used by Sanitary District employees, purchased from repetitively or in large quantities. Finance may also develop specialty vendor lists for unique or nonrecurring purchases that may be required. Employees are encouraged to contact Finance for assistance and information concerning vendor selection and overall market conditions for the goods and services they wish to acquire.

All requests from firms and/or individuals expressing an interest in providing goods or services should be forwarded to Finance.

(1) Application for Placement on Vendor List. Any vendor that wishes to sell to the Sanitary District may apply for inclusion on the appropriate vendor list. Finance has an application form that must be completed and signed by the applicant. Such applications shall state the class or classes of commodities that the vendor sells. Not all applications necessarily result in the vendor being added to a bid list. Several reasons for noninclusion are no or insufficient need for the product or service; lack of local representation; or lack of service support. Product catalogs or other descriptive literature may be furnished to Finance.

(2) Removal from a Vendor List. Vendors may be deleted from a list by action of the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee. Reasons for deletion may include, but are not limited to:

(a) Out of business.

(b) Continual poor service.

(c) Poor quality of product.

(d) Failure to comply with previous purchase order(s).

(e) Failure to respond to three consecutive bids or proposals. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.120 Credit card/purchasing card usage policy.

The terms “credit card” and “purchasing card” shall be used interchangeably in this section.

The Finance Department is designated to be responsible for the District’s credit card issuance, accounting, monitoring, retrieval, and for general oversight of compliance with this credit card policy, therefore credit cards are provided to the District Manager and Office Manager only.

District credit cards may be used only by the individual to whom the card was issued and only for the purchase of goods or services for the official business of the Sanitary District No. 5 of Marin County, unless otherwise authorized by the District Manager for a specific purchase.

All authorized users of the District’s credit cards shall submit documentation detailing the goods or services purchased, the cost of the goods or services, the date of purchase and the official business for which it was purchased within 30 days of purchase.

Employees issued District credit cards shall return the credit card immediately upon termination of his/her employment or service with the District.

The Finance Department will follow established accounts payable internal control procedures for approval, documentation and payment of credit card charges.

All balances due should be paid for within not more than 30 days of the initial statement date, or as necessary to avoid late fees.

Unauthorized use of District credit card shall result in disciplinary action. Such action may be waived by the Purchasing Agent if, in their belief, upon the presentation of facts, such usage was truly inadvertent. See subsection (7) of this section.

(1) Issuance of Credit Cards. Credit Cards will be issued to the District Manager and Office Manager. A credit card will be available on a checkout basis from the Finance Department, to be returned within a reasonable period of time, as agreed upon by the user and the Purchasing Agent. Individual credit limits shall not exceed $1,000 for general use card and $10,000 for the District Manager.

(2) Card Use. The credit card shall be used for the purchases of goods and services that are listed on the budget and for the official business of the Sanitary District when normal accounts payable procedures cannot be utilized (i.e., petroleum purchases, travel related expenses, conference registration fees, membership renewals, etc.). The administration credit card may be used for emergency purchases and internet purchases of under $1,000, or as approved by the Purchasing Agent. Anyone requesting to use the credit card for internet purchases must contact the Finance Department in order to purchase the items via the internet.

Purchases made via the credit card must comply with the District’s purchasing and expenditure policies. The card in no way changes such policies.

Individual purchases shall be limited to authorized limits of the credit card holder.

Anyone using a Sanitary District credit card shall sign an agreement to abide by adopted District credit card policy and procedures.

(3) Prohibited Use. Cash advances. Standard merchant category exclusions (e.g., liquor, tobacco, gambling, pornography). Personal use, except when a single bill is generated for combined District and personal expenses. In such cases, the card holder shall reimburse the District for personal charges within 30 days of transaction date.

(4) Security. The credit card should always be treated with a level of care that will secure the card and account number. Guard the credit card number carefully. Do not post it or write it down.

Authorized employees issued a credit card are responsible for its protection and custody and shall immediately notify the Finance Department if the credit card is lost or stolen, who in turn shall notify the credit card company.

(5) Personal Liability. The credit card shall not impact the cardholder’s personal credit references. The District-issued credit cards are corporate liability cards, not a personal liability card. Usage inconsistent with District policy will however create a liability on the part of the employee to repay the District for such unauthorized usage.

(6) Payment. The Finance Department shall review and approve all invoices received for payment. The balance, including interest due on an extension of credit, under the credit card arrangement should be paid for within 30 days of the initial statement date, or as best possible to avoid late fees. Payments shall be reported to the Board monthly via warrant lists provided at the monthly Finance Committee meetings, as well as actual warrants.

(7) Penalty for Wrongful Use. Any employee or manager of the Sanitary District No. 5 of Marin County who violates the provisions of this policy may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination.

(8) Employee Agreement. Prior to the issuance of a credit card to an employee, such employee shall sign a credit card user agreement, with at least the following terms:

The credit card is to be used only to make purchases for the legitimate business of the Sanitary District. The credit card must be used in accordance with the provision of the Credit Card Policy established by the Sanitary District No. 5 of Marin County. I understand that receipts for credit card purchases are due upon return of the credit card. Violation of these requirements may result in disciplinary and legal action to the fullest extent of the law. I have read and understand the Sanitary District’s Credit Card Policies and Procedures and I agree to adhere to them.

[Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.130 Sole source procurement.

(1) Competition Is Presumed. This policy covers sole source procurements; however, the fair and open chance to compete is preeminent. Before asserting that a procurement is sole source, all reasonable attempts should be made to identify multiple vendors or multiple brands.

(2) Sole Source Procurement Defined. Sole source procurement is any acquisition which, by virtue of the specifications required by the requestor or by the clear and specific restrictions imposed by a provider, restricts the contract to one vendor or to one brand.

(3) Sole Source Procurement Discussed.

(a) Examples of sole procurements are:

(i) Equipment for which there is no comparable competitive product, for example, a one-of-a-kind oscilloscope that is available from only one supplier.

(ii) Public utility services from natural or regulated monopolies.

(iii) A component or replacement part for which there is no commercially available substitute, and which can be obtained only from the manufacturer.

(iv) An item where compatibility is the overriding consideration, such as computer operating software enhancements for an existing system.

(v) A supply, equipment, part, service or supplier that, due to constraining factors associated with scientific research, are needed to ensure the fairness and validity of the underlying research.

(vi) A supply, equipment, part, service or supplier that is specifically and clearly required by a grantor, contractor, donor, or other provider of funds where the usage of those finds is specifically, explicitly, and clearly restricted by the funds provider.

(b) There are two types of sole source assertions:

(i) Supplier. One and only one supplier is capable of delivering the good or service needed.

(ii) Brand Name. One and only one brand of good or service is capable of addressing the need.

(c) When recommending that a procurement is sole source, objective evidence of a convincing nature must be provided. Personal or professional preference will not be considered.

(d) Because competition is not involved, it must be demonstrated that the price is fair and reasonable.

(e) If sole source procurement falls into the dollar value that must be approved by or reported to the Board, the requestor may be called upon to defend the action before the Board, and may also be required to justify the sole source procurement in cases of audit, protest, public inquiry, litigation, or similar circumstance.

(4) Specific Sole Source Procedures.

(a) For procurements that are $3,000 or less, no sole source justification is required. However, that the source and price are fair and reasonable and represent best value to the District must be ensured. Splitting the procurements to avoid the $3,000 limitation is specifically prohibited.

(b) For procurements exceeding $3,000 evidence must be provided that the acquisition qualifies as sole source and that the indicated price is fair and reasonable. A sole source justification form must be completed and submitted. The order shall be placed by the requestor only after review by the Purchasing Agent. The Purchasing Agent, upon examining all documentation provided by the requestor, may take necessary actions and make prudent inquiries before approving the purchase order.

(c) The Purchasing Agent shall ensure that sole source procurements otherwise comply with other policies and procedures governing the acquisition of goods and services at the Sanitary District No. 5 of Marin County. Further, the Purchasing Agent shall ensure that all reports exclude sole source procurements on the sole basis that they are sole source. Further, the Purchasing Agent shall ensure that all reports requiring the disclosure of sole source procurements appropriately reflect such procurements, and are timely filed.

(d) Knowingly executing a sole source procurement when in fact it is not will subject an employee to disciplinary action up to and including termination.

(5) Procedure. Purchase orders for items that are to be purchased from a specific vendor, where substitutes to the vendor or brand are unacceptable, must be accompanied by a written justification explaining the circumstances that make substitutes unsuitable. The justification must be signed by the District Manager.

Purchasing Agent determines whether the justification is appropriate. Justifications are to be supported by factual statements that will pass an internal or Federal audit. It is the salient features of a product that makes it a sole source.

Justifications may include the following reasons:

(a) The need to obtain replacement parts for existing equipment.

(b) The need to obtain auxiliary components that match existing equipment.

(c) The need to meet unique physical design or quality requirements.

(d) The need to maintain research continuity or comply with established District standards.

(e) The need to buy items that have characteristics unique to a single manufacturer, essential to the proposed use.

(f) Additional internal costs would be incurred by changing brand names in this particular application.

(g) Equipment repair when initial estimate is less than $3,000 but, after disassembly and inspection, additional costs are more than estimated and it would be less cost effective to go out for quotes.

See Justification of Sole Source Purchasing Questionnaire attached to the document codified in this chapter.

Please be sure to address only specification items (do not address price or cost items). It is very important to complete items 2, 3 and 4 of the questionnaire with strong, complete, and well thought-out answers as these are the areas that must stand up to audit. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.140 Local business participation in District public contracts and encourage businesses to hire locally in District public contracts.

(1) The District shall make every effort to secure and contract with local businesses for labor, supplies and materials on all contracts that are not required by law to be competitively bid as long as all such labor, supplies and materials are offered or available to the District at fair and reasonable prices.

(2) On all public contracts that are required by law to be competitively bid, the District shall make every effort to encourage the participation of local businesses by taking the following steps, including, but not limited to:

(a) Contact local businesses that are listed in the business pages of the phone directory under an area of specialization needed for the proposed project.

(b) Create a data bank of local businesses that have bid on District projects or have expressed an interest in being contacted about relevant projects by supplying the District with the following information:

(i) Name, address, and telephone number and name of contact.

(ii) Brief description of business or service offered.

(iii) Name and address of all employees of the local business.

(iv) Documentation of a bona fide pension, health and welfare plan for employees.

(v) Documentation, where applicable, of participation in a State certified apprentice program.

The District shall make every effort to contact local businesses whose names are in the data bank whenever this is a project relevant to their business.

(c) All notices inviting bids shall include language stating to the effect that it is the District’s policy to encourage bidders to utilize local businesses whenever possible on District projects.

(d) All notices of public contracts shall be published in the media within the local area. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.150 Notice to Board and District Counsel.

If an employee feels that the District Manager’s or the Office Manager’s actions or activity fall outside the policies and procedures of this chapter, such employee shall notify the Chair of the Board and District Counsel for subsequent review and resolution. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

Article II. Goods and Materials – Service and Construction Contracts

2.10.160 Purchase limits.

The purchase limits referred to in this article are for the purchase of goods or equipment only and do not include purchase limits for construction, technical, maintenance or professional services.

Splitting of purchases to avoid purchase limits or to avoid oversight by the Finance Department is strictly prohibited. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.170 Purchase of goods under $3,000.

Competitive quotes are not required, but prudent buying techniques suggest contacting at least two or more vendors for a comparison of competitive prices.

Employees may make direct purchases as outlined in SD5MCC 2.10.130(4)(a) which allows Sanitary District employees to make direct purchases under $3,000 per transaction after receiving approval from the District Manager. The Finance Department shall be responsible for monitoring and controlling the use of purchases made in this manner. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.180 Purchase of goods over $3,000.

The Finance Department shall be responsible for procuring all goods and supplies over $3,000. Informal or formal bidding procedures may be used depending on the complexity of the items purchased. A minimum of two or more competitive prices shall be obtained prior to approval of purchasing goods unless it is a sole source item. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.190 Purchase of goods over $15,000.

The District Manager is authorized to expend any and all budgeted funds in the amount of $15,000 or less. Any expenditure in excess of $15,000 shall be presented to the Board of Directors for approval prior to ordering goods or services. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.200 Competitive bidding not required.

Competitive bidding is also not required, on a prima facie basis, for the following:

(1) Election materials.

(2) Legal brief printing, stenographic services, and transcripts.

(3) Books, publications, subscriptions, recordings, motion picture films, and annual book and periodical contracts.

(4) Property or services, the price of which is fixed by law.

(5) Automotive and heavy equipment repairs.

(6) Proprietary drugs and pharmaceuticals, medical supplies and equipment.

(7) Training seminars or other classes for personnel.

(8) Materials, supplies, equipment or services that can only be obtained from one supplier, generally because of its technological, specialized, or unique character. Such purchases require a sole source justification and the approval of the Purchasing Agent.

(9) Goods or services where the cost is under $3,000.

(10) When, in the judgment of the Purchasing Agent, it is in the best interest of the Sanitary District to negotiate, without engaging in a competitive bidding process, an extension of an existing contract for goods based upon satisfactory performance, as long as such negotiated price is fair and reasonable. This applies even if the existing contract was obtained through prior recent competitive bidding.

(11) When competitive quotes for goods are not possible due to an emergency or documented sole source justification. Such purchases shall be made through a negotiated procurement process and coordinated through the Finance Department.

(12) Purchases made from other public agencies by use of joint powers agreements, cooperative purchasing programs, pooling agreements, and other recognized types of agreements used by government agencies for the purpose of combining purchasing requirements in order to reduce costs, increase efficiency, or reduce administrative expenses. Documentation as to the advantage of the cooperative purchase should be retained where reasonably feasible.

(13) “Piggy-backing” is allowed, such that the District may purchase, order or otherwise enter into contracts with vendors that have been awarded orders for goods or services by other governmental agencies via a competitive process. Documentation as to the advantage of such shall be maintained in each instance.

(14) Materials and supplies that are acquired from a vendor based on a contractual arrangement with the vendor that was established pursuant to a competitive bid process.

(15) Goods or services on, or provided by vendors/contractors on, the California Multiple Award Schedules (CMAS) list, subject to the limits and provisions of the CMAS program. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.210 Offer and acceptance.

In general, written solicitation of quotes is preferred. The Uniform Commercial Code has established that a contract exists when there has been offer and acceptance. Thus, the terms of an agreement to buy or sell are not fixed until offer and acceptance have been established.

Written quotes submitted by prospective vendors are recognized as offers and purchase orders or contracts issued by the Sanitary District serve as acceptance. Verbal offers are not recognized as offers. When verbal quotes are accepted, the Sanitary District’s purchase order is considered an offer and acknowledgement or delivery by the vendor is considered acceptance. A facsimile quote is construed to constitute a written offer.

In order to establish firm pricing, delivery, and payment terms, and to reduce risk to the Sanitary District, it is preferred to have written quotes serve as the offer and to have the Sanitary District’s purchase order or contract serve as acceptance. Written quotes should contain the following information:

(1) A precise description and/or specification of the items to be purchased.

(2) Quantity and price of the items to be purchased.

(3) Delivery date and whether freight will be charged.

(4) Where the ownership and responsibility for the condition of the goods during shipping passes, i.e., at the vendor’s dock (F.O.B. origin/source) or at the delivery location (F.O.B. destination).

(5) The vendor’s or his/her sales representative’s signature. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.220 Solicitation of quotes, bids, and proposals.

The complexity of the goods or equipment required and an evaluation of the Sanitary District’s risk exposure determine whether informal or formal purchasing procedures are used. Informal requests for quotes are typically used for the purchase of off-the-shelf or catalog items, materials, and supplies. Requests for quotes and requests for proposals may be conducted informally per the procedures outlined in SD5MCC 2.10.230 and 2.10.240.

Informal solicitations do not require a public bid opening, although the solicitation may require quotes or proposals be submitted by a specific date and time.

Formal, sealed bidding procedures will generally be used for complex purchases, where the purchase of unique or high cost property or services is anticipated, when there is the potential for heightened risk exposure for the Sanitary District, or when formal bidding is required by law.

It is the responsibility of the Finance Department to evaluate each purchase and to initiate the appropriate method of purchase. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.230 Informal requests for quotes.

Written, facsimile, or oral requests for quotes (RFQ) are typically solicited for the purchase of off-the-shelf or low dollar materials, supplies, and goods. Award is made on the basis of lowest responsive and responsible offer submitted in response to the request for quotes.

(1) Responsive Bid. A bid (or quotation) shall be considered responsive when the bidder has complied with the terms, conditions, provisions, specifications, instructions, and all other requirements of the request for quotes. Criteria such as required delivery time, delivery instructions, the timely submission of quotes, and other factors that influence the decision to purchase may be used to determine whether a bid is considered responsive. Such criteria shall be made known to the prospective bidders at the time quotes are solicited.

The determination as to whether a bid is responsive is an administrative decision, which shall be made by the Finance Department after the receipt and evaluation of quotes.

(2) Responsible Bidder. A bidder is considered responsible when it has been established that the bidder has the technical capability, financial capacity, facilities, and manpower required to perform as outlined in the requirements of the solicitation. Reference checks concerning reputation, judgment, experience, and efficiency of the bidder, site visits and interviews, and performance history may be used to determine whether a bidder is responsible.

The determination as to whether a bidder is nonresponsible is an administrative decision, which shall be made by the Finance Department in consultation with Sanitary District Counsel. Any determination that a bidder is nonresponsible shall be documented by the Finance Department along with the reasons for making such a determination. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.240 Informal requests for proposals.

Informal written or facsimile requests for proposals (RFP) may be used for the purchase of goods and services when “best value” cannot be determined by price alone, when there is uncertainty as to specifications, or when requirements such as vendor reputation, expertise, and performance suggest that the Sanitary District’s interests would be best served by procuring the goods or services on a “best value” basis.

The Purchasing Agent shall determine that the use of an informal RFP is practical and advantageous for the Sanitary District before an informal RFP may be issued.

The RFP shall describe the scope of work to be performed, and shall clearly identify the proposal evaluation criteria, the award process, and any special provisions or conditions.

Informal RFPs do not require public notice or the submission of sealed proposals. Thus, informal RFPs may be solicited and received by facsimile or other written means. After proposals have been submitted, the Finance Department shall evaluate the proposals submitted in response to the RFP within the guidelines developed by the Finance Department. Award shall be made to the offeror whose proposal is determined to provide the “best value” to the Sanitary District on the basis of the evaluation criteria identified in the RFP. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.250 Oral purchase commitments.

No employee shall make an oral commitment to purchase goods or services without obtaining prior approval from the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee.

Notwithstanding the foregoing, the District Manager may authorize an employee to make a tentative oral commitment to purchase subject to a “confirming purchase order.” Such authorization may be granted if the request is urgent and time does not permit the submittal of a prior purchase order to the Finance Department.

The department shall note the authorizing person’s name on the purchase order and submit the purchase order to the Finance Department for final approval and further processing. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.260 Formal bid procedures.

Formal bids may be obtained either through:

(1) Invitation for Bids (IFB). This requires a detailed purchase description including acceptance criteria and all contractual terms and conditions applicable to the procurement. See SD5MCC 2.10.870, Competitive sealed bidding – Invitation for bids.

(2) Request for Proposals (RFP). This is used to initiate competitive sealed proposal procurements. The significant difference between an RFP and an IFB is that in an RFP the award may be negotiated. See SD5MCC 2.10.780, Request for proposals – Procedural checklist. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.270 Cooperative purchases.

The Purchasing Agent is authorized to make purchases of property required by the Sanitary District through the use of joint powers agreements, cooperative purchasing programs, pooling agreements, and other recognized types of agreements used by government agencies for the purpose of combining purchasing requirements in order to reduce costs, increase efficiency, or reduce administrative expenses. Documentation as to the advantage of the cooperative purchase should be retained where reasonably feasible. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.280 Procedures for purchasing fixed assets.

Fixed assets are defined as those items of equipment that cost $5,000 or more and have a life of greater than five years. All fixed asset items shall be budgeted prior to purchase.

The threshold for infrastructure is $25,000.

Purchase orders must be submitted to the Finance Department for all fixed assets. Employees may not purchase fixed assets independently. Contact the Finance Division regarding infrastructure procurement. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.290 Receiving and payment for purchase.

(1) Departments shall be responsible for the inspection, acceptance or rejection of all deliveries of goods, supplies or equipment. The purpose of establishing this responsibility is to ensure that all goods received are as ordered.

(2) The ordering employee shall follow the steps provided below:

(a) Packing Slip Available.

(i) Pull the packing slip upon arrival of the goods.

(ii) Physically examine the goods for condition, quantity and conformance with any other terms (see SD5MCC 2.10.310).

(iii) Compare the goods to the packing slip.

(iv) If there are any problems with the shipment, contact Finance, who will assist in resolving the discrepancy with the vendor.

(v) After a satisfactory inspection (see SD5MCC 2.10.310), and/or resolution of any problems, employee shall sign and date the packing slip and/or other documentation, and note the following when applicable: partial shipment, purchase order number, budget account number, department number, and/or project number.

(vi) Forward to Finance.

(b) Packing Slip Not Available – Use of Memo in Lieu of.

(i) Physically examine the goods for condition, quantity and conformance with any other terms (see SD5MCC 2.10.310).

(ii) If there are any problems with the shipment, contact Finance, who will assist in resolving the discrepancy with the vendor.

(iii) After a satisfactory inspection (see SD5MCC 2.10.310), and/or resolution of any problems, employee shall prepare, sign and date a memo, and note the following when applicable: date and location received, by whom (receiving employee to sign off if not self), partial shipment, other pertinent information you may wish to include, purchase order number, budget account number, department number, and/or project number.

(iv) Forward to Finance.

(3) The receiving employee shall count, weigh, or otherwise determine whether the quantity of the delivery conforms to the specifications referred to or included in the purchase order. The receiving department shall also determine whether the quality of the delivery conforms to the specifications referred to or included in the purchase order.

(4) Each purchase order shall designate the place or places at which the ordering employee intends to receive and inspect the goods delivered.

(5) The Finance Department does not need to be notified when the purchase order states that the quantity is approximate or states that an over-shipment of a certain amount is acceptable and the quantity received falls within this range. In this event, the quantity on the purchase order should be changed by the receiving employee to agree with the quantity actually received. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.300 Receiving goods from a common carrier.

When receiving goods from a common carrier, the employee signs only for the number of boxes or parcels which have been received from that carrier and which are listed on the delivery tag which accompanies the delivery and is not signing as to the condition of the merchandise inside the box or parcel.

Receiving personnel should indicate on the delivery tag any external evidence of packaging damage or note unsealed packages. A “good order” receipt is not to be given under these circumstances, without noting the aforementioned. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.310 Inspection and testing.

Receiving employee shall inspect the merchandise carefully immediately after receipt. Inspection of items received and determination of compliance with the ordering description or specifications is the responsibility of the receiving department. If there is any damage from shipping, or if it is otherwise unsatisfactory and not what was ordered, the receiving department shall contact the Finance Department immediately.

The receiving department may apply such tests as are appropriate for verifying deliveries. For example, quality determination may be made by checking the brand delivered against the brand specified, or may be determined by comparing delivery with any sample upon which the purchase was based. The Finance Department may assist the receiving employee in making any test. If disputes arise as to quality of the merchandise delivered, it may be necessary to consult with Sanitary District Counsel depending upon the circumstances. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.320 Acceptance of delivery.

Acceptance occurs when, after a reasonable opportunity to inspect the goods, the receiving department signifies that the goods are conforming, or that they will retain them in spite of their nonconformity or the receiving employee fails to make an effective rejection within a reasonable period of time.

Receiving employees should realize that the vendor relies on timely actions by the ordering/receiving department to constitute either acceptance or rejection, and time may become “of the essence” in the opportunity to reject nonconforming goods.

Employees are obligated to accept merchandise that has been ordered if it is undamaged and complies with the purchase order. If there is a change of need for the items, the Finance Department should be contacted immediately to make other arrangements. It should be realized, however, that there may be a restocking charge if the items must be returned through no fault of the supplier. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.330 Payment.

After determining that the supplies, materials, equipment, or services received meet the test of quantity and quality, a receiving employee shall complete and sign the purchase order copy, packing slip, and/or other documentation and forward it to the Finance Department.

The following steps are to be followed by the Finance Department:

(1) Review the purchase order copy and/or other documentation on file.

(2) Obtain the receiving copy, packing slip, and/or other documentation and compare quantities received with the quantities ordered. Resolve any discrepancies. Attach the requisition to the purchase order copy.

(3) Receive the vendor’s invoice; check price, quantity, and terms against purchase order, packing slip, and/or any other documentation. Resolve any discrepancies. Attach the purchase order copy and receiving copy or packing slip.

(4) Check against the available budget to ensure that funds are still available and also check dollar extension and zone splits for accuracy.

(5) District Manager shall approve and initial invoice, appropriating which account is to be assigned from the Quickbooks chart of account list, as well assign the appropriate zone designation on the invoice.

(6) Enter invoice information into the accounts payable computer system (Quickbooks).

(7) Warrants shall be prepared in duplicate by the Office Manager or the designate of the District Manager. Account numbers shall be indicated on the check’s top memo line, with abbreviated memo regarding what service was performed and date, month and year service was provided. Invoice number, detailed account of what service was performed and specific dates applicable are to be indicated on the voucher section memo line. Each warrant or the detailed warrant listing shall be reviewed and initialed by the District Manager.

(8) Signature and Payment. Warrants shall be signed once monthly at the Finance Committee meeting. Payments shall be distributed upon Board approval. If warrant is not authorized for immediate payment, warrant shall be signed and kept for Board approval at the next regularly scheduled monthly Board meeting, before being issued/mailed out.

(9) Preapproved Expenses Prior to Board Final Approval. The following expenses are preapproved for payment by the Finance Department at any time: (a) Utilities: PG&E, AT&T, Sprint, Novato Disposal, Waste Management, MMWD, Alhambra and Mill Valley Refuse Service; (b) Personnel: CalPERS Health Insurance, PERS retirement, PERS 457 Plan, MidAmerica HRA Benefits and Pay Chex Payroll Services.

(10) Distribution. The original warrant is issued to the vendor along with the remittance slip and any other supporting information. The Office Manager is to file the duplicate copy, along with any associated paperwork, in numerical order. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.340 Rejection of deliveries.

If inspection reveals that the delivery does not conform to the quantity or quality specified, the Finance Department should be notified immediately in order that the vendor may be notified that the delivery has been rejected. The Finance Department may then request the vendor to make a satisfactory replacement or a supplemental delivery or make other arrangements, depending upon the circumstances.

In the case of improper delivery, the terminology of the Uniform Commercial Code of Law (UCC) is explicit as to the buyer’s rights and alternatives by stating that:

...unless otherwise agreed..., if the goods or tender of delivery fail, in any respect, to conform to the contract, the buyer may

(a) Reject the whole; or

(b) Accept the whole; or

(c) Accept any commercial unit or units and reject the rest.

If the ordering department elects under the above provisions to reject the goods, such rightful rejection must be made within a reasonable time after delivery and tender. Reasonable time is defined as any time fixed by agreement which is not manifestly unreasonable, based on the nature, purpose and circumstances of the action. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.350 Damaged merchandise.

There are two types of damaged merchandise – visible and concealed.

(1) In case of visible damage, the receiving department shall:

(a) Note on both copies of the freight bill “case damaged in shipment” and, if the item is visible and the damage is visible, also include “item visibly damaged.”

(b) Obtain signature from the deliverer (trucker) on both copies of the freight bill.

(c) Return one copy of freight bill to deliverer (trucker).

(d) Forward copy of freight bill to the Finance Department together with note identifying damage.

(2) In case of concealed damage, after the merchandise has been accepted from the carrier, the package or parcel should be opened immediately, the merchandise inspected and any discrepancies or damage reported to the Finance Department. If damage has occurred, the department shall keep all packaging. If the materials, supplies or equipment were purchases made F.O.B., shipping point or point of origin, the Sanitary District must file the claim for damage within the prescribed time frame with the carrier.

Important Note: The receiving employee should not destroy the damaged item or any packaging materials, and shall notify the Finance Department immediately if damaged goods are received. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.360 Surplus property – Transfer, sale, and disposal.

The Finance Department is responsible for the preparation and distribution of procedures to ensure the maximum utilization of surplus property. It is incumbent upon each employee to promptly notify the Finance Department when any property in his/her possession is no longer required. The Finance Department will determine whether another department can utilize the item or whether the item should be stored, transferred, or disposed.

Fixed assets that are the property of the District shall not be sold, turned in for credit, or otherwise disposed of without the approval of the Board of Directors. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.370 Department notification of surplus property.

Sanitary District employees are responsible for notifying the Finance Department of items that are no longer needed. The Finance Department will provide forms that must be completed for this purpose.

The Finance Department may, on occasion, survey employees to determine if surplus property exists within the District. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.380 Movement and storage of surplus property.

The Finance Department will arrange for the surplus property item(s) to be removed from the District and either stored or properly relocated. Sanitary District staff may be used for transportation of the property.

The Finance Department shall maintain an inventory of what surplus items are available in storage. Sanitary District employees may contact the Finance Department to determine if a particular item is available as surplus and the Finance Department will compare requisitions received against the list of surplus items to ensure that unnecessary purchases are avoided. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.390 Disposal of surplus property.

No property shall be disposed of, other than small miscellaneous otherwise useless and valueless items, without first being declared surplus by the Board of Directors. The Finance Department shall sell, lease, transfer, dispose of, or exchange surplus property in the manner authorized by the Sanitary District No. 5 of Marin County Board, or as outlined below.

The Finance Department may contract with an auctioneer to conduct a Sanitary District public auction or with an auction service to arrange for the disposal of surplus property. For certain low-value items (less than $1,000) which have been declared surplus by the Board of Directors, the Finance Department may with Board approval conduct a publicly advertised cash-only “garage sale.”

The Finance Department is responsible for ensuring that the sale, lease, transfer, exchange, and disposal of surplus property is conducted in such a manner as to realize the maximum value possible from the sale or disposal of surplus property. Recognizing that the transfer, receipt, storage, and sale of surplus property may involve labor, transportation, and administrative costs that exceed the value that could be recovered from the sale of damaged items, items that have outlived their intended usefulness, and items that have been determined to have no value, the Purchasing Agent is authorized to discard or otherwise dispose of damaged, useless, or valueless surplus property when costs associated with selling such goods at public auction would exceed the anticipated revenues to be realized from the auction. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.400 Prohibition against purchase by employees.

Individuals assigned the following duties within the Sanitary District organization shall not, either directly or indirectly, bid for or purchase surplus Sanitary District property:

(1) Purchasing functions.

(2) Responsible for surplus declarations.

(3) Access to privileged information regarding the item or equipment or the value thereof, which is not available to all prospective bidders.

Furthermore, the District Manager shall be prohibited from purchasing any District surplus property.

This provision shall be liberally construed to prohibit any appearance of impropriety and Sanitary District Counsel should be consulted for an opinion whenever there is a question of probable conflict. If a person violates this policy, the purchase shall be voided, if possible, and the person shall be subject to discipline. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.410 Trade-in allowance.

When purchasing property for which it is not required to advertise for bids, the Purchasing Agent is authorized to solicit and accept advantageous trade-in allowances for Sanitary District property which has previously been determined by the Purchasing Agent to be of no further District use.

Competitive bids for the purchase of property by the Sanitary District may also include a request for trade-in of equipment that is no longer useful to the Sanitary District.

The Finance Department shall request (either prior to or at the time of bid award) that the Board declare the Sanitary District property to be traded in as surplus to the needs of the Sanitary District and approve such trade in as a part of the bid award, if the Purchasing Agent determines that doing so would be in the best interest of the Sanitary District. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.420 Proceeds from disposition of surplus property.

The Finance Department shall deposit proceeds from the disposition of surplus property into the Sanitary District Operating Fund for use by the Sanitary District or, in the event the property had been “surplused” by a capital or other special fund, proceeds shall be deposited to the respective fund(s). [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.430 Contact with vendors.

Employees that contact vendors for information to price a purchase requisition or gather operational or budgetary information shall inform the vendor that the information requested is for planning purposes only and is not a request for quotes or an invitation for bids. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.440 Use of purchase order requests.

Purchase order requests (hard copy) shall be used by all employees for requesting the Finance Department to secure goods, supplies and equipment (and services) for operational requirements. Preparation of the purchase order request should be complete and detailed in order to facilitate the purchase, and should contain the following information:

(1) Purchasing Procedure. Purchase orders shall be prepared for all purchases (including contract acquisitions, for tracking purposes):

(2) Purchase Orders (P.O.s) shall be maintained using an automatic, sequential, preprinted numbering system. The following information shall be recorded on each P.O.:

(a) Vendor name and date of order placed.

(b) Description and estimated cost of items.

(c) Facility and use identification.

(d) Requesting employee name.

(e) Signature of District Manager.

(3) Information Provided to Vendor. For purchases exceeding $5,000, the written P.O. shall be issued to the vendor and shall include standard contract terms and conditions. Otherwise, the P.O. number and/or copy of the written P.O. shall be issued to each vendor as requested by the vendor.

(4) Record Keeping and Filing. The yellow copy of the purchase order will be attached to the associated invoice and warrant, stored in the warrants file cabinet, filed chronologically, via warrant number.

(5) Purchase orders are not required for the following expenses:

(a) Expenses preapproved for payment by staff (District Manager, Office Manager or any Board member) at any time.

(b) Personnel-related costs including those expenditures greater than $15,000 (PERS Health Insurance, PERS Retirement, PERS 457 Plans, Paychex Payroll, Paychex generated payroll taxes and services fees).

(c) Small, out-of-pocket purchases under $200.00.

(d) Any delegation of responsibility and authority shall be in writing and shall precisely describe the extent thereof.

(6) All purchase orders over the amount of $15,000 must be Board-approved prior to purchase; or $25,000 in the event of an emergency.

(7) The purchase order should be realistic when specifying a delivery date.

(8) Common use items must be clearly described by their popular names, supplemented by number, size, style, or other identifying data.

(9) When requesting the purchase of specialized items, the employee must exercise care to avoid using a description or specification which describes the product by manufacturer only, since this may impair competitive bidding procedures. If an employee is convinced that only a specific manufacturer’s brand product can meet its needs, then the purchase requisition must expressly state that along with substantiation of the need for that particular product. (See SD5MCC 2.10.470, Specifications and sole source defined.)

(10) For purchases requiring competitive pricing the employee shall submit a completed purchase order with all attachments or transmittals. This shall include names, address, and telephone numbers of vendors contacted, a recap of competitive prices received by vendor. The Finance Department shall review the documentation and may contact other sources of supply for additional quotes. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.450 Consolidation of requests.

Employees should plan their annual requirements and make every effort to consolidate similar items into a single purchase requisition.

Items shall be ordered in quantities sufficient for a reasonable period and consistent with future needs and available storage space. Department procedures which result in the submission of several purchase orders for the procurement of the same item or for like items for delivery to the same location often require the issuance of otherwise unnecessary purchase orders, incur additional shipping and packaging expense, cause an unfavorable impression of Sanitary District business practices, and eliminate or reduce the volume purchase advantage of centralized purchasing. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.460 Specifications.

Departments shall ensure specifications are non-restrictive and clearly describe the required items or service in terms of functional performance. Drawings or samples should clearly describe the required item. If a brand name or model is specified on the requisition, the Finance Department will assume that “or equal” items are acceptable. What is “equal” will be determined jointly by the Finance Department and the requesting department. (See SD5MCC 2.10.500, Approved equal.)

If a department believes that only a specific make and model will meet its needs, the department shall attach a completed sole source justification form which calls out the unique features of the sole source item or service and states why these features are required. SD5MCC 2.10.130 may be used for guidance. If other brands and models have been tested or used previously, the department shall specify the brands and models used, and why they are unacceptable, since prior unsatisfactory performance may be used to determine vendor responsibility during formal or informal bid procedures.

The Finance Department may return the requisition for additional justification for a specific brand which appears to be unreasonably restrictive, luxurious or otherwise inappropriate for the product. The Finance Department will assist, upon request, in the preparation of specifications. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.470 Specifications and sole source defined.

“Brand name or equal specification” means a specification which uses one or more manufacturer’s names or catalog numbers to describe the standard of quality, performance, and other characteristics needed to meet the Sanitary District’s requirements, and which provides for the submission of equivalent products.

“Brand name specification” means a specification limited to one or more items by manufacturer’s name or catalog number. It is written to have the effect of limiting the product to a single kind. See “sole source specification” and “sole manufacturer specification.”

“Design specifications” customarily employ dimensional and other physical requirements of the item to be procured. These specifications provide information on how the product is to be fabricated or constructed.

“Performance specifications” specify the functions or level of performance required. Performance specifications are results oriented and allow bidders considerable latitude in achieving the required performance results.

“Sole manufacturer justification” is a written memorandum justifying a sole manufacturer specification and identifying the physical, functional, and performance characteristics of the goods required and/or the market conditions that require limiting competition to a single manufacturer’s product. The sole manufacturer justification shall be signed by the department head or his/her designee and submitted to the Purchasing Agent for approval.

“Sole manufacturer specification” is a specification for goods meeting specific physical, functional, or performance characteristics that restricts competition to a particular manufacturer’s model or catalog identification, which may be available on a limited competitive basis from more than one vendor.

“Sole source justification” is a written memorandum justifying a sole source specification and identifying the physical, functional, and performance characteristics of the goods required and/or the market conditions that require limiting competition to a single supplier. The sole source justification shall be signed by the department head or his/her designee and submitted to the Purchasing Agent for approval.

“Sole source specification” is a specification for goods that meet specific physical, functional, or performance characteristics that precludes alternate sources of supply or competition. Sole source specifications may include proprietary items, which are defined as items held under exclusive title, trademark, or copyright.

“Standard specifications” are those specifications for items that have been identified as Sanitary District standards and have been approved for repeated use in procurements. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.480 Review of specifications.

The Finance Department is responsible for the completion and accuracy of specifications and to that end shall review the specifications for completeness of information, terms and conditions, insurance/risk management mandated requirements, and language consistent with the Sanitary District’s established purchasing procedures.

To assure that the specifications and terms meet Sanitary District needs, the Finance Department may request the specifications be reviewed by pertinent Sanitary District staff (e.g., Sanitary District Counsel, District Manager, Safety Director, Chief Plant Operator, etc.) before incorporation into any bid or quotation process. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.490 Vendor assistance in writing specifications.

There may be occasions when vendor assistance is required in developing specifications. Such specifications must be written in general terms and be performance based. The vendor shall be clearly informed that the information provided may be used in developing specifications for a competitive procurement process and that the fact of the vendor’s involvement in the specification development process may be disclosed as part of the quotation or bid solicitation process. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.500 Approved equal.

When brand names are specified, the words “or approved equal” should be added unless compelling reasons make only the single brand acceptable, in which case a written justification must be signed by the department head, or designee, and submitted with the purchase requisition to the Finance Department. (See SD5MCC 2.10.470, Specifications and sole source defined.)

Use of a brand name as part of “approved equal to” specifications should be for the sole purpose of describing the standard of quality, performance, and functional (including aesthetic) characteristics the Sanitary District desires and not be intended to limit or restrict competition. Use of “approved equal to” specifications should, whenever possible, identify a minimum of two brand names as “approved equal.”

Using specifications provided by a specific manufacturer should be avoided if possible, but if used the name of the manufacturer, model number, etc., should be indicated with a statement that use of the manufacturer’s specifications is for the sole purpose of establishing “approved equal” criteria. When the specifications designate “or approved equal,” the Finance Department reserves the right to determine and approve any other as being equal or acceptable, subject to concurrence and approval of the requisitioning employee. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.510 Emergency expenditures.

(1) Emergency expenditures are necessary to: protect public and employee health and welfare, prevent damage to the environment, prevent damage to equipment and facilities, and limit liability to the District.

(2) Authorization to Expend Emergency Funds. The District Manager is authorized to expend up to $25,000 in unbudgeted funds for emergency purposes. The President of the Board (or the Secretary in the President’s absence or any other Director in the absence of the President and Secretary) is authorized to make emergency expenditures up to $100,000. Any emergency expenditure in excess of $100,000 requires an emergency meeting of the Board.

Any and all emergency expenditures require ratification by the Board at the next meeting of the Board and require appropriation from reserves by the Board. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.520 Purchase orders.

A purchase order authorizes the vendor to ship and invoice for goods, supplies, equipment, and services as specified. The purchase order is a legal contract between the Sanitary District and a vendor for the specific item(s) stated on the face of the purchase order at the price(s) shown. The purchase order form is an integral part of the Sanitary District’s financial system. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.530 Exceptions to using purchase orders.

There are certain types of procurement or purchase transactions that require special handling. Some transactions require the creation of formal contract documents while other situations may require that the transaction be processed using the normal Sanitary District request-for-warrant form.

Employees are encouraged to call the Finance Department for assistance if there are any questions regarding exceptions to the normal purchase order process. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.540 Distribution of purchase orders.

The purchase order is a three-sheet document that is signed by the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee and sent to the vendor. One copy of the purchase order is then forwarded to the requesting and/or receiving employee. One copy is for the District’s files. The receiving copy should be held by the requesting employee until the order is complete, at which time the employee should sign the receiving copy of the purchase order and return it to Finance. The signed purchase order, when returned to Finance, shall serve as notice that the order is complete and as authorization to pay for the goods or services itemized on the purchase order. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.550 Changing purchase orders.

In certain instances it may be appropriate to change or cancel a purchase order after it has been issued. A department employee desiring a change or cancellation should immediately notify the Finance Department. Upon approval, the Finance Department will send a change order or cancellation order to the vendor. The Finance Department is responsible for processing all alterations once the initial order has been processed. Only the Finance Department may authorize change orders and/or cancel purchase orders.

Any changes to a purchase order will be made by issuing a revised purchase order. Employee will receive a copy of any change order issued. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.560 Professional service contracts – Definitions and award authority.1

(1) Professional Services – General. Professional service contracts are used to procure consulting or professional/technical services not provided by Sanitary District employees.

The following is a partial list of consultant or professional services: financial, economic, accounting, legal, maintenance, medical, therapeutic, administrative, airport, security, laundry services or linen services.

These and other professional services, with the exception of the services itemized in subsection (2) of this section, may be obtained through competitive procurement methods or by waiver of competitive bidding and sole source award as outlined in SD5MCC 2.10.620(1), Vendor Selection – Miscellaneous or “Special Services.”

(2) Professional Services – Architectural, Landscape Architectural, Engineering, Environmental, Land Surveying, or Construction Project Management Services. Per Cal. Gov’t Code § 4526:

Selection by a state or local agency head for professional services of private architectural, landscape architectural, engineering, environmental, land surveying, or construction project management firms shall be on the basis of demonstrated competence and on the professional qualifications necessary for the satisfactory performance of the services required.

There are special procedures for acquiring these services as outlined in SD5MCC 2.10.620(2), Vendor Selection – Cal. Gov’t Code §§ 4525 through 4529.5.

(3) Award Authority for Professional Service Contracts. The Purchasing Agent is exclusively authorized to engage independent contractors to perform services for the Sanitary District with or without the furnishing of material. Employees shall work with Finance on all professional service contracts, except in emergencies as per SD5MCC 2.10.730. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.570 Criteria for consultant contracts.

An employee may request a consultant only if one or more of the following conditions exist:

(1) Urgent need which cannot be met by Sanitary District employees.

(2) Temporary, intermittent, or irregular services which cannot be performed effectively by Sanitary District employees.

(3) Special or highly technical skills which cannot be obtained from Sanitary District employees.

(4) Need for an independent opinion, appraisal, audit, or similar services.

(5) Lack of sufficient personnel to accomplish the work in the required time frame. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.580 Contract term, extension and amendment.

The length of a contract term may be determined using the following criteria:

(1) Project schedule.

(2) Contract rate.

(3) Project need for service.

Contracts may contain provisions for one or more additional one-year term renewal options where market conditions or other factors favor using such options.

Departments may make a written request to extend the term or amend the provisions of a professional service contract. Such actions must be processed in the same manner as the original contract. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.590 Incremental contracting.

In order to prevent incremental contracting, each consultant contract shall clearly specify the following:

(1) Work to be performed.

(2) Product to be provided.

(3) Cost detail of services/material charges.

(4) Length of contract.

(5) Monetary limit of contract.

(6) Terms and conditions.

Consultant contracts shall be consolidated whenever feasible. Contracts shall not be split to bypass bidding requirements. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.600 Review by Sanitary District Counsel and Safety Officer.

All professional services contracts must conform to the approved Sanitary District Counsel format, the most current version of which is contained on the Sanitary District intranet or may be obtained from Finance, and each contract that varies from the standard terms and conditions must be reviewed and approved by Sanitary District Counsel.

Contracts that otherwise conform to standard terms and conditions established by Sanitary District Counsel do not need further review and approval by Sanitary District Counsel, but may still be referred to Sanitary District Counsel for review and approval at the discretion of the Purchasing Agent.

The Sanitary District requires insurance coverage for all professional service contracts. The contracting employee is responsible for acquiring the contractor’s certificates of insurance, which must be submitted to the Finance Department for review to ensure that all insurance requirements are satisfied. Employees should make prospective contractors aware of the Sanitary District’s insurance requirements at the time quotes, bids, or proposals are solicited. Contractors should not be given notice to proceed until the appropriate insurance certificates have been received and approved.

The Sanitary District Counsel and Safety Officer reviews may be requested simultaneously in order to expedite the review process.

In certain instances, jobs may be too small, circumstances may dictate, or the market may be such that it is impractical to utilize the standard contract form and/or insurance requirements. In such cases Sanitary District Counsel may modify the standard forms, and/or the Safety Officer may modify the standard safety and insurance requirements at their discretion. The latter shall require further approval by the District Manager. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.610 Contracts over $15,000.

SD5MCC 2.10.600 notwithstanding, all professional services contracts over $15,000 require “approval as to form” by Sanitary District Counsel and Sanitary District Board of Directors. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.620 Vendor selection.

(1) Vendor Selection – Miscellaneous or “Special Services.” Vendor selection shall be based on a competitive process whenever reasonably feasible. Professional services may be competitively solicited through informal requests for quotes (RFQ) and informal requests for proposals (RFP) or through formal sealed competitive bids or formal sealed competitive proposals – invitations for bids (IFB) and requests for proposals (RFP) respectively. The type of service to be contracted for, the anticipated award amount, and the potential risks involved affect the decision whether to use informal or formal purchasing procedures. Employees should contact the Finance Department for assistance in determining the appropriate method of procuring professional services.

Professional service contracts may be awarded without competitive solicitation when there is only one person or vendor available or capable of providing the required service, when there are limitations in the availability of potential contractors, when the services required are of such a specialized nature that precludes competitive solicitation, or when other conditions exist such that the appropriate awarding authority (see SD5MCC 2.10.560(3)) determines that it is in the Sanitary District’s best interest to waive competitive solicitation for the required professional services. Employees shall retain documentation supporting a sole source selection whenever professional services are procured without the use of a competitive solicitation, and are required to submit such documentation to the appropriate awarding authority when requesting award of a sole source contract.

(2) Vendor Selection – Cal. Gov’t Code §§ 4525 through 4529.5. Vendor selection for professional services of private architectural, landscape architectural, engineering, environmental, land surveying, or construction project management firms shall follow the procedure outlined below:

(a) Step 1. Prospective contractors are requested to submit statements of qualifications to the Sanitary District for the required services or proposed project. Statements of qualifications may be solicited through trade publications and by other methods of advertisement.

(b) Step 2. The department conducting the procurement:

shall evaluate current statements of qualifications and performance data on file with the agency, together with those that may be submitted by other firms regarding the proposed project, and shall conduct discussions with no less than three firms regarding anticipated concepts and the relative utility of alternative methods of approach for furnishing the required services and then shall select therefrom, in order of preference, based upon criteria established and published by (the department), no less than three of the firms deemed to be the most highly qualified to provide the services required. (Cal. Gov’t Code § 4527)

The evaluation criteria shall be determined by the contracting department in the same manner as described in SD5MCC 2.10.770, Evaluation criteria.

(c) Step 3. The department shall negotiate a contract with the most highly qualified individual or firm as established by the evaluation procedure in subsection (2)(b) of this section, Step 2, for service at a price the department determines is fair and reasonable. Should the department be unable to successfully negotiate a contract with the most highly qualified individual or firm at a price the department deems fair and reasonable, then negotiations with that individual or firm shall be terminated, and the department shall negotiate a contract with the second most highly qualified individual or firm.

Failing accord with the second most qualified individual or firm, the department shall terminate the negotiations, and then undertake negotiations with the third most qualified firm. Should the department be unable to negotiate a satisfactory contract with any of the selected firms, the department shall select additional firms in order of their competence and qualification and continue negotiations until an agreement is reached. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.630 Conflict of interest.

No contracts shall knowingly be issued to any current Sanitary District employee or his/her immediate family, or to any former Sanitary District employee or his/her immediate family until one year after separation, or as specified by the Fair Political Practices Commission and/or relevant California Government Code or regulation. This includes individuals acting as agents or representatives. See SD5MCC 2.10.030, Ethical standards. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.640 Procedures.

Sanitary District shall develop such internal procedures as may be necessary to ensure that the contracting process proceeds in a structured and timely manner. Such internal procedures shall, at a minimum, include the following:

(1) Contract Monitoring. Once a contract has been approved and services commenced, contract monitoring will provide periodic review of the basic units of service, costs and analysis of quality, as well as basic contract compliance.

(2) Contractor Evaluation. As a regular part of the contract maintenance and review effort, evaluations should be conducted on all contracts. Such evaluations should consist of the following:

(a) Routine review at the time claims for payment are submitted to assure compliance with contract.

(b) Special review caused by changes in program or funding, concerns regarding performance of or requirement for services, or at the discretion of the department, or at the request of the Sanitary District Board of Directors or District Manager. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.650 Duplicate originals.

There shall be two signed duplicate originals of each contract: one for District files, the other for the contractor. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.660 Change orders.

The District Manager may approve change orders under $15,000 in connection with any professional services contract awarded – except as may be allowed by the Board for any specific project. Change orders above $15,000 shall be presented to the Board for authorization. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.670 Formal bidding procedures.

(1) Competitive Sealed Proposals – Requests for Proposals.

(a) Solicitation of competitive sealed proposals is an alternative method for procuring goods and services where there is uncertainty as to specifications, unknown risks, or where it is advantageous to the Sanitary District to purchase the best value for goods or services as opposed to low bid. It involves issuing a written request for proposals (RFP), public notice of the RFP, evaluation of proposals based on predetermined criteria identified in the RFP, and allows negotiation with the top rated offeror. The solicitation of competitive sealed proposals may be appropriate under the following circumstances:

(i) When the Sanitary District has identified a problem to be solved or a need to be filled, and requests the offerors to propose the best method for accomplishing it.

(ii) When it is to the Sanitary District’s advantage to make an award based on factors other than low bid.

(iii) When the procurement requires the evaluation of skills, expertise, or technical capability of the offerors.

(iv) When the procurement is extremely complex or entails unknown risks.

(v) When the procurement involves contracting for services or a combination of goods and services.

(vi) When specifications for the project cannot be clearly defined.

(b) A request for proposals differs from an invitation for bids (see SD5MCC 2.10.870) in that the RFP considers cost as just one of several criteria for making award. Using the RFP, the Sanitary District will select the most advantageous offer by evaluating and comparing predetermined proposal criteria.

(c) Soliciting competitive sealed proposals typically involves the following steps:

(i) Solicitation of proposals through a request for proposal (RFP);

(ii) A private opening of proposals without disclosure of offerors or contents to competing offerors before or during the process of negotiation;

(iii) Submission of cost or pricing data from the offeror as part of the original proposal, or as a second step after the top rated offer has been determined;

(iv) Rating of proposals by a panel of evaluators using predetermined evaluation criteria identified in the request for proposals;

(v) Discussions with responsible offerors whose proposals have been determined to be reasonably susceptible of being selected for award;

(vi) An award made to the offeror whose proposal is determined to be the most advantageous, considering the evaluation factors set forth in the request for proposals.

(2) Conditions for Use. Purchases shall be awarded by competitive sealed proposals when required by law or when, in the estimation of the Purchasing Agent, the use of competitive sealed proposals is deemed appropriate.

Unless otherwise directed by law, the Board of Directors and/or the District Manager, contracts for professional services may be awarded through the use of either informal RFPs or formal competitive sealed proposals. (See SD5MCC 2.10.240, Informal requests for proposals.)

When seeking to acquire professional services, employees are advised to consult Finance for assistance in determining whether an informal request for proposals or a formal competitive sealed proposal is appropriate. Employees are not authorized to conduct either informal requests for proposals or competitive sealed proposals without seeking the advice of Finance.

For sole source professional service contracts, the requesting employee shall submit a written sole source justification. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.680 Competitive bids on construction.

Except as hereinafter otherwise provided, all work shall be constructed and all contracts for the construction of work shall be let pursuant to competitive bids and the work shall be performed by the contractor who shall be found and determined by the Board of Directors to have presented the lowest responsible bid in each instance. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.690 Quotations for construction work.

Whenever a contract is not required to be let by competitive bid and the informal procedures specified in SD5MCC 2.10.700 do not apply, the Purchasing Agent may elect to call for informal quotations before letting a contract. No call or advertisement for such quotations shall be deemed to bring the project under standard competitive bidding rules. The Purchasing Agent shall have the authority to award contracts which are not required to be bid. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.700 Informal bidding procedures applicable to construction contracts between $30,000 and $125,000.

The following procedure shall govern construction contracts between $30,000 and $125,000:

(1) The Purchasing Agent shall maintain a list of qualified contractors identified according to categories of work to whom notice shall be mailed inviting informal bids unless the product or service is proprietary. Said notice shall be mailed not less than 10 calendar days before bids are due and shall describe the project in general terms, how to obtain more detailed information about the project, and state the time and place for submission of bids. “Notice of call for bids” requirements shall not apply to construction contracts of less than $125,000.

(2) The Board of Directors shall award the contract for the project to the lowest responsible bidder. If all bids are in excess of $125,000, the Board may, by passage of a resolution by a four-fifths vote, award the contract at $137,500 or less to the lowest responsible bidder, if it determines the cost estimate of the District was reasonable. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.710 Competitive bids not required when.

Work and improvements of less than $30,000 may be performed by the District itself by “force account” without obtaining competitive bids. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.720 Force account.

The expression “force account” as used in this chapter is intended to and shall refer to and include all work in which the District determines or directs the method and the timing of performances, as distinguished from specifying and requiring results with inspection. This will ordinarily encompass work done by the regular employees of the District, but it will also include work done by contractors and other new employees who may be employed for specific jobs, if and so long as their performance is under the full control of the District and if the District reserves the right to stop the work or to increase or decrease it without the consent of such contractor or other employees. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.730 Emergencies permitting construction contracts to be awarded without advertising.

Construction contracts may be awarded without submitting them to bid in significant emergencies, including but not limited to states of emergency defined in Cal. Gov’t Code § 8558, when repair or replacements are necessary to permit the continued conduct of operations of the District or to avoid danger to life or property. The Board of Directors by a majority vote may proceed at once to replace or repair any public facility without adopting plans, specifications, strain sheets, or working details. The work may be done by force account, by contract or by a combination of the two. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.740 Reduced requirements for maintenance work of $25,000 or less.

Competitive bids shall not be required on maintenance work performed by contractors on jobs less than $25,000, and a reduction in insurance requirements may be allowed.

Such contractors should have satisfactorily completed similar work for the District in the prior two years, and ideally have a current agreement with the District in place.

Under this section, the District’s Engineering Department or, at the discretion of the District, a qualified engineering consultant shall prepare a cost estimate for the proposed work. The bid received from the sole source contractor shall not be above the District’s/consultant’s estimate by more than 10 percent in order to proceed with the work. If the bid exceeds the 10 percent maximum limit, the notice to proceed shall not be issued until the difference is evaluated and if deemed appropriate, approved by the Purchasing Agent.

The District may accept whatever insurance limits the contractor carries for general liability and automobile liability policies, subject to a determination by the Purchasing Agent that the risk or exposure to liability involved does not require higher insurance limits. Workers’ compensation limits remain at the minimum statutory limit ($1,000,000) or as required by the State of California. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.750 Evaluation philosophy.

When using requests for proposals it is important to be as objective as possible, to clearly describe the procurement process, and to identify the evaluation criteria so that the procurement process and the evaluation criteria can be easily understood by the prospective offerors, the evaluation panel, and the awarding officials. Sufficient records should be generated and retained to allow a post award review by an impartial party.

The objective of the process is to screen proposals to determine the proposal that provides the best value to the Sanitary District, and to then enter into final negotiations with the offeror who submitted that proposal. Usually, award will be made to the offeror of the highest rated proposal unless the parties are unable to conclude a mutually agreeable contract, in which case negotiation with that offeror shall be terminated and negotiations entered into with the second ranked offeror. Should the Sanitary District be unable to conclude a mutually agreeable contract with the second ranked offeror, then negotiations with that offeror shall be terminated and negotiations entered into with the third ranked offeror, and so forth, until an agreement is reached. At no time shall the Sanitary District’s negotiators conduct concurrent negotiations with two or more offerors. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.760 Evaluation panel.

An evaluation panel shall be formed to review all proposals and document all findings and recommendations. The panel should have at least three members, and may consist of a representative of Finance Committee and others appointed by the initiating department head or the District Manager. The evaluation committee may include persons who are not Sanitary District employees but have experience or expertise to contribute. Such non-Sanitary District employees shall abide by the ethical standards set forth in SD5MCC 2.10.030.

Because evaluation of competitive sealed proposals typically requires one or more meetings of the evaluation panel, and may include demonstrations, site visits, requests for best-and-final offers, and other activities, the evaluation panel should be selected and a procurement schedule should be drafted prior to soliciting proposals. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.770 Evaluation criteria.

The careful selection of evaluation criteria is an important element in preparing an RFP because the evaluation criteria determine how the Sanitary District will rate and ultimately select the proposal that offers the best value to the Sanitary District. Evaluation criteria should be as objective as possible.

Typically, each request for proposals will have its own unique requirements. Thus, an RFP’s evaluation criteria will be determined by the scope of work to be performed, the services to be provided, and any other relevant factors that may influence the decision to award a contract. The following nonexclusive list of possible evaluation criteria has been presented below to provide examples of criteria that may be useful for evaluating proposals:

(1) The quality, viability, and suitability of the solution offered, or of the goods or services offered, when compared with the requirements and specifications of the RFP.

(2) Overall responsiveness of the proposal and whether the proposal adequately addressed the scope of work, specifications, and other requirements of the RFP.

(3) The offeror’s technical capability, expertise, or skill to provide the required goods or services, including the offeror’s past experience providing similar goods or services.

(4) The offeror’s ability to perform the contract or provide the required services promptly, or within the specified time without delay or interference.

(5) The offeror’s reputation as determined by references and documented past performance history.

(6) The sufficiency of the offeror’s financial resources.

(7) Price. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.780 Request for proposals – Procedural checklist.

(1) Frequency of Issuing RFPs. To the extent possible, in order to assure potential contractors access to Sanitary District business and to insure that the Sanitary District continues to receive competitive prices and the best available resources, RFPs for ongoing services should be, under most circumstances, issued at least once every three years.

(2) Procedures. These procedures are generally applicable to all procurements that require competitive sealed proposals. Otherwise, it may still be desirable to develop an RFP if there is a competitive market for the required goods or services, or if conducting an RFP may result in better pricing or improved service. Departments are encouraged to contact purchasing for assistance in determining when the use of a request for proposals is appropriate.

(a) Budget Considerations. Prior to an RFP or informal interview procedure being initiated, sufficient funds must be approved by the Board of Directors, or specifically authorized.

(b) Initial Request. Upon approval of funding, and if applicable, a written request should be submitted to Finance identifying the project in general terms, identifying the funding, and the projected time frame for the project.

(c) Coordination and Planning. The RFP process normally involves the solution to a problem. The better the Sanitary District clarifies its own thinking beforehand and communicates it to the prospective firms, the more complete and acceptable the proposals received will be. The requesting department is responsible for scheduling an initial planning session with Finance to consider the following:

(i) Definition of the problem to be solved. The problem must be clearly stated so that it can be understood and successfully addressed by potential offerors.

(ii) Identification of what the successful offeror is to accomplish. This would include the desired approach to the problem; practical, policy, technological, and legal limitations; specific questions to be answered; description of the items to be delivered; format and number of copies of the completed reports; and the extent and nature of the assistance to be made available by the Sanitary District to the successful offeror.

(iii) Budgetary requirements and limitations.

(iv) Estimated time frame including projected dates for award of contract, commencement of performance, progress reporting, completion, and payment.

(v) Preliminary listing of potential contractors, using the master vendor file maintained in the Finance Division and those provided by requesting department. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.790 Drafting the RFP.

The requesting department and Finance will jointly develop a draft RFP that includes all of the legal, boilerplate, minimum requirements, and evaluation criteria necessary to the process. The draft may include some or all of the following as tailored to the specific project:

(1) Background discussion of Sanitary District No. 5 of Marin County – population demographics, local economy, etc.

(2) General discussion of the scope of the services to be provided and minimum qualifications for participation.

(3) Discussion of current work method or services being provided.

(4) Description of the RFP procurement and award process.

(5) Identification of the proposal evaluation criteria and a clear statement that low bid will not be the sole basis of award.

(6) General Information. This will include the format to be followed in submitting proposals; a statement of the minimum qualifications required to participate in the RFP process; the name, address, and telephone number of the Sanitary District’s official contact for the RFP; the location, date and time proposals are due; and instructions to submit one original signed proposal and at least three copies of the proposal prior to the final closing date and time.

(7) Special provisions, including any bid bond and performance bond requirements that may be required at the discretion of the Purchasing Agent.

(8) General provisions, standard Sanitary District insurance requirements with minimum limits as determined by the District.

(9) A draft copy of the Sanitary District’s professional services contract for review by prospective offerors. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.800 Construction approval by Board prior to notice.

Plans and specifications shall first be prepared and filed with and approved by the Board of Directors.

Exception: Board approval is not required to advertise plans and specifications for construction when the project has been previously approved and budgeted, or when there is an emergency. In case of emergency, and subject to ratification by the Board prior to the bid award, the District Manager may approve the plans and specifications, order them filed and, if time is available, direct publication of the notice inviting bids once in a newspaper of general circulation published and printed in Marin County at least five days prior to the date fixed for receiving and opening bids. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.810 General notice of call for proposals.

Unless the Board shall specifically direct otherwise, each notice inviting bids shall be signed by the Secretary of the District and shall be published twice not less than five days apart in a newspaper of general circulation printed and published in Marin County at least 14 days prior to the date fixed for receiving and opening bids. The notice shall also be mailed to all construction trade journals designated by the California Uniform Construction Cost Accounting Commission to receive mailed notice of all informal and formal construction contracts being bid for work within Marin County at least 30 calendar days prior to the date designated for opening bids. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.820 Receipt, opening, and recording of proposals.

Proposals shall be submitted in a sealed envelope identified by proposal number and title. Upon receipt, proposals shall be marked with the date and time of receipt and shall be stored in a secure place until the date and time set for the opening of proposals. Telephonic, telegraphic, and faxed proposals will not be accepted. Proposals received after the advertised closing date and time will be considered nonresponsive and will be rejected.

On the date established in the RFP, the proposals shall be opened either in the Finance Division or at the location specified in the RFP. Because RFPs are negotiable, they will not be opened in public, and proposal content and evaluation information will only be made available after an award recommendation has been made.

Each proposal must contain an original signature of a party authorized to act as an agent of the offeror. In general, an original signature contained anywhere in the proposal shall be sufficient to show intent to sign the proposal.

Proposal information, including the company name of the offeror, the presence of addenda and exceptions, pricing information, and any other pertinent information will be recorded on abstract of proposals, which shall be signed by the opener. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.830 Evaluation of proposals.

The proposals are reviewed by Finance and/or the issuing department to make sure the entire minimum, mandatory, and administrative requirements for the RFP are met. Those proposals not meeting the minimum, mandatory, and administrative requirements may be determined to be nonresponsive and given no further consideration.

Those proposals remaining after the initial review will then be forwarded to the evaluation panel for in-depth evaluation as set forth in the request for proposal; however, they will not be reviewed by District Counsel. Evaluation of proposals will be made by the panel, which will note any exceptions and record each proposal’s scores based on the established criteria. Scores shall be summarized and recorded when the evaluations have been completed.

Departments should work with Finance to establish criteria and relative weight prior to any review. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.840 Discussions with offerors and revisions to proposals.

Discussions may be conducted with offerors who have submitted proposals determined to be reasonably susceptible of being selected for award. Typically, the evaluation panel will conduct discussions and/or site visits with no more than the three highest ranked offerors for the purpose of clarification of proposals and to assure full understanding of the scope of work and the requirements of the request for proposals. In conducting discussions, there shall be no disclosure of information derived from proposals submitted by competing offerors.

The offerors selected for further discussions shall be accorded fair and equal treatment with respect to any opportunity for discussion and revision of proposals, and such revisions may be permitted after submission and prior to award for the purpose of obtaining best and final offers. The evaluation panel may re-evaluate the proposals and revise proposal scores after discussions with the offerors, after receiving revised proposals, or after receiving best and final offers. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.850 Contract negotiation.

Once discussions with the offerors have been completed, the panel shall make a quantified evaluation of the proposals under consideration and shall rank the proposals accordingly. The evaluation panel shall then make a written award recommendation, which documents the reasons the top rated proposal has been selected. After the panel has made an award recommendation, the specific terms and conditions of the contract shall be negotiated with the offeror’s representatives by the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee, or by the department of primary interest.

There are specific items that must be included in the contract language and others which may be added in the negotiation process. It should be noted that contract language may not be added which in any way changes the requirements of the request for proposal or the successful responding proposal.

Typically, the original RFP and the offeror’s proposal will be made part of the contract. The Sanitary District’s general insurance requirement and the final proposal are always included as an integral part of the contract. If not clearly defined in the proposal, the contract must include a cost and payment schedule as well as a specific implementation schedule for completion of services. Depending upon the final negotiated total contract amount, the contract may require action by the Board of Directors. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.860 Intent to award.

When negotiations have been completed, District Manager notifies in writing all offerors that submitted proposals of the award recommendation and the proposed award date. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.870 Competitive sealed bidding – Invitation for bids.

An invitation for bids (IFB) is normally used to solicit competitive sealed bids for the purchase of property where exact specifications and risks are known. The primary purpose of an IFB is to solicit firm offers from bidders under circumstances where potential risks are controlled by the terms of the IFB.

Invitation for bids is a method of procurement that includes the following elements:

(1) Public notice and issuance of an IFB with a purchase description that includes acceptance criteria and all contractual terms and conditions applicable to the procurement.

(2) Public opening and reading of bids at a predesignated time and place.

(3) Evaluation of bids based upon the requirement set forth in the invitation, which may include special qualifications of potential bidders, life cycle costing, value analysis, and any other criteria such as inspection, testing, quality, workmanship, delivery, and suitability for a particular purpose.

(4) Acceptance of the lowest responsive and responsible bid as submitted, and award to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.880 Conditions for use.

Purchases shall be awarded through competitive sealed bidding when required by law or when, in the estimation of the Purchasing Agent, the use of an IFB is deemed appropriate and suitable. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.890 Public notice.

Adequate public notice of the IFB shall be given prior to the date set for the opening of bids by conspicuously posting a notice advertising the IFB in the area of the Sanitary District Administration Building which is available to the public during Sanitary District business hours. Public notice may also include publication in a newspaper of general circulation, published in Marin County, and/or notification of prospective offerors by mail, fax, or other means. Public notice shall be made a reasonable time, in conformance with applicable law, ordinance, or regulation, prior to bid opening. The notice must specify the place where the copies of the invitation for bids are on file, the place for receipt of bids, and the location, date, and time of the bid opening. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.900 Preparation of bid specifications.

(1) Preparation of bid specifications should:

(a) Be clear, definitive and concise to enable prospective bidders a basis on which to submit bids.

(b) Be written to allow for competitive purchase of goods, supplies and equipment and not to exclude all but one type or kind.

(c) Not call for features or a level of quality not required for the intended use, except in cases where such features or the level of quality are essential for some future consideration or result in overall economic advantage to the Sanitary District.

(d) Describe the performance requirements rather than its formulation, description or design.

(e) Be prepared to permit free and full competition (“or equal”) as is reasonably possible under the attendant circumstances.

(2) Vendor Involvement. Direct vendor involvement in the development of specifications at the employee level without the prior authorization of Finance is prohibited. Employees shall use Finance for assistance in the development of specifications.

(3) Restrictive Specifications. Some latitude is permissible in specifying features of certain items. While it is not necessary to prepare specifications in a manner that every conceivable manufacturer could competitively bid, the Sanitary District must be able to demonstrate a clear reason for any restrictive specifications.

(4) Other Considerations. Specifications must state whether criteria other than cost will be considered in awarding the purchase order or contract, e.g., results of product testing, length and terms of warranty provisions, reliability and maintenance costs, repurchase value, or residual value of the goods or equipment after a specified number of years where the residual value can be objectively ascertained.

Note: For additional information, see SD5MCC 2.10.460, Specifications. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.910 Bid documents.

(1) Copies of Documents. Bidders may obtain complete sets of bidding documents from the Purchasing Agent in the numbers, and for the deposit sum, if any, as set forth in the IFB.

Bidders shall use complete sets of bidding documents in preparing bids. The Sanitary District will not assume any responsibility for errors or misinterpretations resulting from the use of incomplete sets of bidding documents.

(2) Interpretation of Documents. All bidders shall promptly notify Finance of any ambiguity, inconsistency or error that they may discover upon examination of the bidding documents.

Bidders requiring clarification or interpretation of the bid documents shall make a written request (facsimile acceptable) which shall reach Finance at least five working days prior to the date for receipt of bids, or as otherwise specified in the bid document.

Any interpretation, correction or change of the bidding documents will be made by addendum issued by Finance. Interpretations, corrections or changes of the bidding documents made in any other manner will not be binding, and bidders shall not rely upon such interpretations, corrections and changes.

Requisitioning departments must notify Finance prior to bid opening if it becomes aware of a need for correction or clarification of a bid specification. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.920 Substitutions.

Materials, products and equipment described in the bidding documents establish a standard of required function, dimension, appearance and quality to be met by any proposed substitution. The burden of proof of merit of proposed alternate or substitute is on the bidder.

Nonsolicited alternates may be considered for award if submitted by the bidder who would otherwise be the low bid.

Each substitution proposed shall include the name of the material or equipment for which it is to be substituted and a complete description of the proposed substitute. Drawings, cuts, performance specifications, test data and other information necessary for an evaluation shall be submitted by the bidder with the bid offered. A statement setting forth any changes in other materials or equipment resulting from incorporation of the substitution shall be included.

The Sanitary District’s decision of acceptance of a substitute shall be with requisitioning department concurrence and approval. The Sanitary District’s decision of approval or disapproval of a proposed substitution shall be final.

No substitutions will be considered after the purchase order has been issued. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.930 Bid addenda.

Addenda will be mailed or delivered to all that are known by Finance to have received a complete set of bidding documents. Copies of addenda will be made available for inspection wherever bid documents are on file for that purpose.

No addenda will be issued later than four working days prior to the date for receipt of bids, except for an addendum withdrawing the request for bids or one that includes postponement of the date for receipt of bids.

Each bidder shall be responsible for ascertaining prior to submitting a bid that he has received all addenda issued. Bidders shall sign and submit all required addenda in order to receive award consideration unless otherwise indicated in the bid document. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.940 Bidders’ conference.

Prebid conferences may be conducted to explain the procurement requirements and specifications. Prebid conferences may also be conducted to review work sites with prospective bidders. Any prebid conferences shall be announced in the invitation for bids and noted in the special provisions section of the IFB. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.950 Procurement schedule and bid opening date.

Each invitation for bids shall be assigned a bid opening date and time by which bids must be received to be considered. This date should provide sufficient time to allow prospective bidders ample opportunity to prepare bid documents. “Sufficient time” varies by commodity and market, and the procurement schedule should be based on a realistic evaluation of market conditions and potential bidders’ ability to respond to the invitation for bids. Under no circumstances shall the bid opening date be less than 10 working days after the notice inviting bids has been made public. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.960 Form of bid.

To receive consideration, bids shall be made on the forms and in the manner set forth in the invitation for bids. Further:

(1) Bids received after the date and time advertised for opening will be considered nonresponsive and will be rejected.

(2) Each bid must be completed in ink, typewritten or computer generated, and all changes and/or erasures must be initialed in ink. Each bid must be signed in ink by an authorized representative of the vendor and include the legal name of the bidder and a statement of noncollusion signed by the bidder.

(3) Bidders shall not change the bid form nor make additional stipulations on the bid form which are not consistent with the provisions of the specifications. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.970 Bid security.

At the discretion of the Purchasing Agent, a bid bond or bid deposit (certified or cashier’s check) made payable to the District may be required to protect the Sanitary District in the event the bidder awarded the contract does not execute the contract, furnish any required performance bond, and proceed with performance. A required bid bond or bid deposit must be submitted with the bid, and be in the amount as specified in the invitation for bid.

In the event an otherwise low bidder is allowed to withdraw a bid due to claim of error, the Sanitary District may retain the bid guarantee to offset its costs of administrative handling of the bid.

Bid bonds or bid deposits, except those of the lowest bidder, should be returned as soon as practical following the bid opening and checking of bids. The guarantee of the lowest bidder should be retained until the contract or purchase order has been executed and approved and any performance bond and certificate of insurance provided, at which time the bid bond will be released except where forfeited. However, the bidder’s bonds or bid security of the second and third lowest responsible bidders may be retained until the contract has been fully executed and insurance certificates are obtained. The cash, cashier’s checks, and certified checks submitted by all other unsuccessful bidders shall be returned to them within 10 calendar days after the receipt of bids, and their bid bonds shall be of no further effect. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.980 Receipt of bids.

All bids must be received sealed in an envelope prior to the time specified in the IFB. Bids must be promptly date/time stamped and deposited unopened in the respective bid folder; they should not be left unattended.

Late bids will not be opened and will not be considered under any circumstances. A late bid will be date stamped and promptly returned unopened to the bidder accompanied by a letter from Finance notifying the bidder that the bid was received late and was not considered. A copy of the rejected bid envelope and the letter will be retained in the bid file. Late bids received without a return address on the envelope will be date/time stamped upon receipt and retained in the bid file unopened. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.990 Bid opening.

All bid openings shall be opened publicly by the Purchasing Agent or designee in the presence of one or more witnesses at the time and place designated in the IFB, or as soon thereafter as is possible. The only information that will be read aloud is the information that will be recorded in the bid abstract. Details of any bid’s exceptions or nonconformance will be not be read in public, but the fact of their existence will be publicly noted. Actual bid documents will not be examined by bidders or the public at the bid opening. The Sanitary District assumes no responsibility for the confidentiality of bid information unless specifically stated otherwise in the IFB.

The following information shall be recorded in the bid abstract, which shall be signed by the opener and witness (typically Finance personnel):

The bidder’s company name and location, bid prices, the presence of addenda and exceptions, other pertinent information such as delivery terms, promised delivery date, and payment terms. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.1000 Correction and withdrawal of bids.

(1) General Rule. The essential rule in evaluating actions to mistakes in bids is that no change or correction may be permitted that would prejudice the interest of the public or be unfair to other bidders.

(2) Waiving Informalities. The IFB may contain provisions allowing the Sanitary District to waive informalities and accept the bid that appears to be in the best interest of the Sanitary District. Such informalities may consist of the correction of minor errors, but only if the bid is substantially in compliance with the terms and conditions of the IFB. Errors that are not material and do not invalidate the legitimacy of a bid may be waived.

(3) Bid Withdrawal Prior to the Bid Opening. Prior to bid opening, mistakes in bids detected by a bidder may be corrected or a bid withdrawn upon authorized written request signed by an authorized representative of the bidder and received by Finance. A facsimile copy will suffice. Oral, telegraphic, or electronic transmission shall not be permitted. Oral corrections or withdrawals by bidder shall not be permitted. The original withdrawn bid(s) shall not be returned until after the bid opening, at which time they shall be returned unopened.

(4) Judgmental Errors. A bid may not be withdrawn as the result of a mistake attributable to the bidder’s error in judgment. For example, a bidder judges he can provide a bid item at a significantly lower price than his/her competitors and submits his/her bid based on that judgment, but later wishes to withdraw his/her bid because he has determined that he cannot provide the item at the price offered. This is an error in judgment, and the bid may not be withdrawn.

Bid withdrawal by reason of nonjudgmental error may be allowed, but only to the extent and pursuant to the criteria set forth in State law.

(5) Correcting Mistakes in Bids. During or after bid opening, mistakes detected in bids may not be corrected by the bidder except:

(a) A bidder may be permitted to correct a material mistake that would cause such bidder to have the low bid if the mistake is clearly evident from examining the bid document; for example, arithmetical errors. However, a bidder shall not be permitted to correct a bid for errors of judgment.

(b) An otherwise low bidder may be permitted the opportunity to furnish other information called for by the IFB and not supplied due to oversight, so long as it does not affect responsiveness.

(6) Confirmation of Bid. When Finance knows or has reason to believe that a mistake has been made in a bid, the bidder should be requested to confirm the bid. Situations where confirmation should be requested include obvious or apparent errors in the bid documents or a bid unreasonably lower than other bids. Such confirmation shall be requested and received in writing, and facsimile copies will suffice for request and receipt of confirmation.

Finance shall maintain complete and sufficient records of evidence used to establish an error and intended price. Records of bid withdrawals shall also be maintained to ensure there is no abuse of the competitive bidding process. All decisions to permit the waiver of bid mistakes and the withdrawal of bids shall be made in writing, approved by Finance, and retained in the bid file. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.1010 Bid evaluation.

Bids shall be evaluated based on the requirements set forth in the IFB, which may include criteria to determine acceptability such as inspection, testing, quality, workmanship, delivery, and suitability for a particular purpose. The criteria affecting price shall be objectively measurable, such as discounts, transportation costs and life cycle or total ownership costs. The IFB shall set forth the evaluation criteria to be used.

Examples of evaluation criteria that may be used include:

(1) Adherence to all conditions and requirements of the bid specifications.

(2) Total price (including any discounts), unit price, or extended price.

(3) General reputation and experience of bidders based on references or prior performance.

(4) Hourly rates for specified personnel.

(5) Ability to meet delivery and stocking requirements.

(6) Financial responsibility of the bidder.

(7) Needs and requirements of the Sanitary District.

(8) Experience with the products involved.

(9) Nature and extent of product data furnished, upon request of the Sanitary District, for review and evaluation.

(10) Quality of merchandise offered, including product appearance, workmanship, finish, taste, feel and results of product testing.

(11) Overall completeness of product line offered.

(12) Availability of product or service required.

(13) Safety performance.

(14) Maintenance costs and warranty provisions.

(15) Repurchase value or residual value of equipment after specified number of years where the residual value can be objectively ascertained.

(16) Compatibility with Sanitary District’s current equipment/products.

Finance shall maintain complete and sufficient records of bid evaluations to ensure that there is no abuse of the competitive bidding process. The justification for an award recommendation shall be made in writing by the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee and retained in the bid file. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.1020 Reservation of right to reject bids and/or require rebid.

Every bid must be carefully examined to determine whether it contains a material variance. Any bid that contains a material variance must be rejected. A test of material variance is a variance that gives the bidder a substantial benefit or advantage not enjoyed by the other bidders. Prior to any rejection for a material variance, Sanitary District Counsel shall be consulted.

The Sanitary District reserves the right to reject any or all bids in whole or in part and may waive any irregularities or informalities in any bid when, after consideration of all relevant circumstances, such action is considered in the best interest of the Sanitary District.

The Sanitary District may:

(1) Reject a bid not accompanied by any required bid security or by other data required by the bidding documents.

(2) Reject a bid that is in any way incomplete, irregular, amplified, unqualified or otherwise not in compliance with the bid documents in all material respect.

(3) Waive any informality, irregularity, immaterial defects or technicalities, in any bids received.

(4) Cancel an invitation for bids, delay the opening of bids, delay the awarding of a contract, or reject all bids for any of the following reasons:

(a) Inadequate or ambiguous specifications.

(b) Specifications have been revised.

(c) Supplies or services are no longer needed; change in Sanitary District requirements.

(d) All bids deemed unreasonable.

(e) Bids were not independently arrived at or were submitted in bad faith.

(f) A determination is made that all the necessary requirements of the bid process have not been met.

(g) Insufficient competition.

(h) For other reasons which indicate the cancellation or rejection of all bids is clearly and demonstrably in the best interest of the Sanitary District.

(i) Insufficient funds have been budgeted for the purchase.

Finance shall maintain complete and sufficient written records of bid rejections and cancellations to ensure that there is no abuse of the bidding process. All reasons for rejecting a bid shall be retained in the bid file. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.1030 Bid award.

Bid award shall be made to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder. All awards shall be made by written notice to the successful bidder and shall be promptly made public information.

(1) Responsive Bid. A bid shall be considered responsive when the bidder has complied with the terms, conditions, provisions, specifications, instructions, and all other requirements of the invitation for bids. The determination whether or not a bid is considered responsive is an administrative decision, and shall be made by the Purchasing Agent or his/her designee.

(2) Responsible Bidder. A bidder shall be considered responsible when it has been established that he has the technical capability, financial capacity, facilities, and work force required to perform as outlined in the provisions and conditions of the bid. Safety performance may be used as a consideration. Reference checks and documented past performance history may be considered when determining whether a bidder has the capability to fulfill the requirements of the IFB.

The determination whether a bidder is nonresponsible is an administrative decision, which shall be made by the Finance Division in consultation with Sanitary District Counsel. Any determination that a bidder is nonresponsible shall be documented by the Finance Division along with the reasons for making such a determination. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.1040 Cancellation of bid award.

Failure on the part of the successful bidder within the time allowed to execute the contract or comply with any other requirement imposed precedent to execution of the contract shall be considered just cause for cancellation of the award and forfeiture of the bid security, not as a penalty, but in liquidation of certain damages sustained. Contract award may then be made to the next lowest responsible and responsive bidder, the call for bids re-advertised, or such other action taken as deemed appropriate by the Purchasing Agent. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.1050 Records.

Finance shall create and retain a summary record for each IFB, and shall make it available for public inspection. The summary shall identify the successful bidder and include the date of the award, the purchase order or contract number, the company names of the participating bidders and the amounts of their bids, and a brief description of the commodity or services being purchased. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]

2.10.1060 Tie bids.

If the bid evaluation results in a determination that there has been a tie for lowest responsive and responsible bid between two or more bids received, which are for the same total amount or unit price and in all other respects equal, and if there is no evidence of collusion between the tie bidders, then Finance may award the bid based on local preference; but if equal on that point, then on safety performance; but if equal on that point, then on credit history; but if equal on that point, then on completion history; but if equal on that point, then Finance shall have the tie bidders draw lots for the bid award.

The local preference criteria shall apply only to the procurement of materials, supplies, equipment, or services, and will not apply to procurements conducted cooperatively with other public agencies or when prohibited by the terms of Federal or State law or the terms of a third party grant of funds. [Unnumbered document adopted 3/15/2018.]


References: Cal. Gov’t Code §§ 4525 through 4529.5, 25502.3, 31000.