Types of Solicitations
Informal Bids are for procurements with an estimated dollar value between $10,000 and $50,000. These bids, which are unadvertised and unsealed, are awarded by the City Purchasing Director to the lowest responsible and responsive bidder complying with the bid specifications.
Formal Bids for purchases over $50,000 are advertised, sealed, and opened at a public bid opening. A formal written contract is required for these bids after award by the City Purchasing Director.
Requests for Proposals are used when price is not the only factor to be used in determining the award of a contract. Evaluation criteria for award will be established such as experience of firm, experience of personnel assigned to project, approach to project, completeness of proposal, and ability of proposer to meet the City's needs. An evaluation committee, who determines the highest ranked proposer, conducts the evaluation of proposals received. The City Purchasing Director makes award of requests for proposals that exceed $50,000.
City personnel using a Procurement Card without the intervention of the Business Operations Division may make purchases under $5,000 independently. A "jumpstart" process utilizing a single vendor quote is another method of expediting small dollar purchases by the Procurement Services Section.
Vendor Contracts, formerly known as blanket contracts, can be either formal (over $50,000) or informal (under $50,000). These contracts are typically bid for a three-year period. The City has realized significant benefits to using vendor contracts to procure frequently used commodities and services. There is a quicker delivery time, reductions in inventory, less administrative costs associated with repetitive bidding, and price protection due to the City's standard escalator clause.