Construction Industry Force Account Council

Promoting Transparency Through Public Agency Compliance

City Of Palm Springs Charter Information


SECTION 913. Purchasing Ordinance.

The city council may, by ordinance, establish procedures for the procurement of supplies, services, construction of public works, and the like.  Such ordinance may provide requirements and procedures for competitive bidding, except that no competitive bidding shall be required for sole source contracts, contracts for professional services, or contracts undertaken in response to emergency situations.  Such ordinance may also establish standards or qualifications for the screening of contractors or providers of goods and services by a prequalification process.

Municipal Code 

7.03.040 Contract and purchase order procedures for greater than one hundred thousand dollars.

(1)            A public project, a service contract and/or a procurement order of more than one hundred thousand dollars shall, except as otherwise provided in this chapter, be let to contract by formal bidding procedures.

(2)            Formal Bidding Procedures for Public Projects.

For those projects which qualify under this section for formal bidding, the following procedures shall be used:

(a)            Adoption of Plans and Specifications.

Prior to soliciting bids, the city council shall approve and adopt the plans, specifications and work details, and authorize the bid request for all public projects in excess of one hundred thousand dollars.

(b)            Invitation for Bids.

An invitation for bids shall be issued and shall include a purchase description and all contractual terms and conditions applicable to the procurement.

(c)            Publication.

A notice shall be published at least once fourteen calendar days before the date of opening the bids in a newspaper of general circulation, printed and published in the jurisdiction of the city. The notice inviting formal bids shall also be mailed to all construction trade journals specified by the California Uniform Construction Cost Accounting Commission as appropriate for the area. The notice shall be mailed at least thirty calendar days before the date of opening the bids. The notice inviting formal bids shall state the time and place for the receiving and opening of sealed bids and distinctly describe the project. In addition to notice required by this section the city may give such other notice as it deems proper.

(d)            Public Notice.

Except as provided under Section 7.05.010(4)(b), public notice, or as required by state or federal regulations, or terms of state, federal or third party grant funding, public notice of invitation for bids shall be determined by the director of procurement and contracting. Such notice may include, but is not limited to, publication in a newspaper of general circulation, notifying suppliers on a list of established suppliers and/or posting notice on-line on the internet. Notices inviting bids shall include a general description of the articles to be purchased or sold, and shall state where bid documents and specifications may be secured, and shall provide the time and place for opening bids. Adequate public notice of the invitation for bids (IFB) shall be given, a reasonable time prior to the date set forth therein for the opening of bids. The director of procurement shall determine the adequacy and reasonableness of the notice and preparation time depending on the complexity of the project to be bid.

(e)            Bidder’s Security for Public Projects Contracts—Bidder’s Security/Failure to Sign Contract.

Bidder’s security shall be prescribed in the notice inviting bids in an amount equal to ten percent of the amount bid. Bidder’s security shall be either a cash deposit with the city, a cashier’s or certified check, payable to the city, or a bidder’s bond. Unsuccessful bidders shall be entitled to the return of bid security within sixty days of the date of the award; however, the lowest responsive and responsible bidder shall forfeit all or part of his security, as may be determined by the city council, upon the bidder’s refusal or failure to execute the contract within ten days after the date of the award of the contract. On the refusal or failure of the lowest responsive and responsible bidder to execute the contract the council may award the contract to the next lowest responsible bidder.

(f)            Bid Opening Procedure.

Sealed bids shall be submitted to the office of the director of procurement and contracting and shall be identified as to bidder, project, and bid title/number on the envelope. Bids shall be opened by the director’s staff in public at the time and place stated in the notice inviting bids. A written record and tabulation shall be made at that time of all bids received, and shall be open for public inspection during regular business hours for a period of one year after the bid opening. The director, consulting with the director of public works, shall make an analysis of the bids for compliance with bid specifications and, thereafter, make a recommendation for award or rejection.

(g)            Award.

The contract shall be awarded with reasonable promptness by appropriate written notice to the lowest responsible and responsive bidder whose bid meets the requirements and criteria set forth in the invitation for bids. In the event the low responsive and responsible bid for a construction project exceeds available funds as determined by the director of finance and treasurer or the engineer’s estimate, the city manager or his designee is authorized, when time or economic considerations preclude re-solicitation of work of a reduced scope, to negotiate an adjustment of the bid price with the low responsive and responsible bidder, in order to bring the bid within the amount of available funds. The city manager or his designee, shall submit a report of the bids to the next regular session of the city council with a recommendation concerning acceptance or rejection thereof, and the city council shall thereupon approve or disapprove the recommendation. The council may waive minor bid irregularities where evidence exists that it is merely a clerical error.

(h)            Bid Acceptance and Bid Evaluation.

Bids shall be unconditionally accepted without alteration or correction, except as authorized in this chapter. Bids shall be evaluated based on the requirements set forth in the invitation for bids, which may include criteria to determine acceptability such as inspection, testing, quality, workmanship, delivery, and suitability for a particular purpose. Those criteria that will affect the bid price and be considered in evaluation for award shall be objectively measurable, such as discounts, transportation costs, and total or life cycle costs. The total or life cycle costs may include an analysis of maintenance costs over the useful life of the product or project. The invitation for bids shall set forth the evaluation criteria to be used. No criteria may be used in bid evaluation that are not set forth in the invitation for bids.

(i)            Tie Bids.

If two or more bids received are for the same total amount or unit price, quality and service being equal, and if the public interest will not permit the delay or readvertising for bids, the council may accept either bid. Should tie bids be received the following priority list will apply to the award:

(1)            Business located within city boundaries with valid business license;

(2)            Coachella Valley based business;

(3)            Riverside County based business; or

(4)            State of California based business.

(j)            No Bids.

If no bids are received, the project may be performed by city employees by force account, or by informal bidding procedures without further complying with this Chapter.

(k)            Rejection of Bids.

In its discretion, the city council may reject any bids presented. If after the first invitation for bids all bids are rejected, the city shall state the reasons for the rejection, and after re-evaluating its cost estimates of the project, the city shall have the option of either of the following:

(1)            Abandoning the project or re-advertising the bids in the manner described in this chapter.

(2)            By passage of a resolution by a four-fifths vote of the city council declaring that the project can be performed more economically by city employees, may have the project done by force account without further complying with this chapter.

(3)            Formal Bid Procedures for Purchase Orders and Non-professional Service Contracts.

(a)            The director of procurement and contracting shall adopt standards for publication and notice for purchase orders and non-professional service contracts of a value greater than one hundred thousand dollars.

(b)            Procedures for bid opening and award shall be as specified in subsections (2)(f) through (k) of this section.

(Ord. 1605 § 1 (part), 2002)

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