Attachment to ASL 97-05


CONTRACT SERVICES

GUIDELINES  


TABLE OF CONTENTS

Chapter 1 - Getting Started

Introduction
Definition
Assignment of Contract Manager
Identification of Services Needed
Civil Service Considerations
SB 199
Conflict of Interest
Bid Solicitation Methods
Competitive Bidding
Authority to Sign a Contract

Chapter 2 - Initiating a Contract

Contract Transmittal 
Interagency Agreement
Standard Agreement
Amendments
Work Service Order
Meeting/Conference Room Rental
Conference/Event Sponsorships

Chapter 3 -Invitation For Bid

Definition
Requirements
Receipt of Bids
Bid Opening
Bid Evaluation
Award Notification
Steps and Time Lines

Chapter 4 - Request For Proposal

Definition
Evaluation Methods
Requirements
Receipt of Proposals
Proposal Evaluation
Cost Proposal Opening
Award Notification
Steps and Time Lines

Chapter 5 - Sole Source Agreements

Definition
Executive Order W-103-94
Exemption Request Procedures

Chapter 6 - Protests

Protest Procedures

Chapter 7 - Contract Management

Introduction
Responsibilities of the Contract Manager

Chapter 1 - Getting Started


1.1

Introduction

These Contract Services Guidelines are provided as a resource to those employees of the Air Resources Board (ARB) who are involved in the State's contracting process. Contained herein are policies, procedures and guidelines whose purpose is to promote sound business decisions and practices in securing necessary services.

   
1.2

Definition

"A contract is an agreement to do or not to do a certain thing" (CCC '1549). It gives rise to an obligation or legal duty enforceable in an action at law (CCC ' 1428). It sets forth terms, conditions, and the statement of all work to be performed.

In its simplest form a contract is an agreement between two or more parties enforceable by law. The use of the label "memorandum of understanding" does not preclude the agreement from being legally defined as a contract. Agreements for the use of training or meeting facilities are considered contracts.

   
1.3

Assignment of Contract Manager

Once the need for a contract has been assessed and it has been determined through the ASD Budget Office that funds are available, a division program staff person should be identified as a Contract Manager to assume overall responsibility for contract development, selection, management, and follow-up.

   
1.4

Identification of Services Needed

The Contract Manager will be responsible for determining exactly what services are needed, how they should be described, what qualifications will be required to perform the services, and exactly what outcomes--in terms of quality and quantity--are expected. The following are key points to consider:

  1. What is needed and how will the need be justified?
  2. When is the service needed and how much lead-time will be required?
  3. Can the services be defined or is an approach being sought?
  4. How can the services best be described; in other words, what are the performance requirements?
  5. How do you plan to pay for the service (e.g. lump sum for a defined unit of delivery, actual costs, etc.)?
  6. How will you monitor contractor performance (i.e. how will you ensure that the specified performances are completed)?
  7. Are any data processing services contained in the proposed statement of work? (If the answer to this question is "yes", please consult with the Information Services Branch of the Technical Support Division).

Answers to these questions will assist in the development of a well-prepared solicitation document.

   
1.5

Civil Service Considerations

Per Government Code, Section 19130, "state agencies must proceed under civil service mandate if the nature of services is such that they could be performed by a civil servant." In other words, if any state governmental entity has the technical capability to perform the services needed, that entity must be offered the opportunity to perform the services.

It is the responsibility of the Contract Manager to determine whether or not the proposed services can be provided through civil service. Please contact the ASD Contract Office if you need assistance in making this determination. If they cannot, the contract must be competitively bid and the Contract Manager must provide, on the ASD Contract Transmittal (ASD-15), a justification for contracting outside of civil service and identification of the state governmental agencies contacted.

   
1.6

SB 199

SB 199 requires that any proposed motor vehicle or vehicle fuel contract be evaluated against all publicly-funded California programs, past and present, to ensure that it does not duplicate programs conducted by ARB or other California agencies.

To document ARB contract compliance with this Senate Bill, the Contract Unit requires that a copy of an approved Executive Order establishing that the contract is a non-duplicative effort be attached to the ASD-15 when submitted for processing.

Please consult with the ARB SB 199 Coordinator in the Legal Office to determine if an anticipated contract falls within these guidelines and if appropriate, procedures for documentation.

   
1.7

Conflict of Interest

A. Current Employees

  1. No officer or employee shall engage in any employment, activity, or enterprise from which the officer or employee receives compensation or has a financial interest and which is sponsored or funded by any state agency unless the employment, activity, or enterprise is required as a condition of regular state employment.
  2. No officer or employee shall contract on that person's own behalf as an independent contractor with any state agency to provide goods or services.

B. Former State Employees

  1. For the two-year period from the date of leaving state employment, no former state officer or employee may enter into a contract in which that person was engaged in any of the negotiations, transactions, planning, arrangements, or any part of the decision-making process relevant to the contract while employed in any capacity by any state agency.
  2. For the twelve-month period from the date of leaving state employment, no former state officer or employee may enter into a contract with any state agency if that person was employed by that state agency in a policy-making position in the same general subject area as the proposed contract within the twelve-month period prior to that person leaving state service.
1.8

Bid Solicitation Methods

There are two primary methods for competitive bid solicitation: Invitation For Bid (IFB), and Request For Proposal (RFP) primary and secondary method. In addition to the competitive bid solicitation methods, there is an established procedure for entering into a sole source agreement. Contact the ASD Contract Office for assistance in determining the most appropriate method of bid solicitation for your proposed project.

   
1.9

Competitive Bidding

A. Fundamental Rules

  1. It is illegal for any agency or employee to draft, or cause to be drafted, any specifications in such a manner as to limit the bidding directly or indirectly to any one specific bidder.
  2. Services may not be split to avoid the need to advertise or obtain competitive bids. In particular, a series of related services that would ordinarily be combined and bid as one job cannot be split into separate tasks, steps, phases, locations, or delivery times to avoid adhering to a state law, policy, or departmental procedure.
  3. Sealed bids must be received at the place and the time stated in the solicitation documents.
  4. The sealed cost bids for an IFB and primary method RFP must be publicly opened.

B. Advertising

    Contracts with a proposed value of $1,000 or more must be advertised in the California State Contracts Register (CSCR) before the contracting process begins, unless specifically exempted by the Department of General Services.

    The Contract Office will be responsible for placing the advertisement.

C. Advertising Exemption

    The Government Code authorizes the Department of General Services (DGS) to exempt certain contracts from advertising where it is determined, at DGS's sole discretion, to be in the State's best interest.

    Requests to exempt individual contracts from the advertising requirement must be submitted to the ASD Contract Office on a "Contract Advertising Exemption Request" (Std. 821). ASD Contract Office will route this request and obtain all signature approvals.

D. Time Consideration

    The bidding process takes from three to eight months from the time the advertisement is placed until the award is made. This time frame may not take into consideration internal approval steps or delays caused by protests. Resolution of protests may add a delay of one to three months.

    The time required to complete a competitive bidding process will depend on the type of method used, the complexity of the services required, the number of bids or proposals received, whether a bidders'/proposers' conference is held, whether Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE) participation is required, whether protests are received, and other factors. As contractors must not start work before a contract is executed and approved, it is important to allow sufficient processing time in order to meet a desired contract start date.

    Requests to expedite contract processing must be provided in writing and include a justification with an explanation of the impact on program requirements.

1.10

Authority to Sign a Contract

The Board's authority to contract is limited to those who are authorized in writing to do so by the Executive Officer. The Contract Office maintains a written record and signature cards of all persons authorized to sign contracts.

When an unauthorized employee signs a contract or MOU it may be legally unenforceable. Moreover, if the other party does not know that the ARB employee is not authorized to sign, the contract may be held enforceable, but the employee could be liable to the State for any damages the State suffers relating to the contract.


Chapter 2 - Initiating a Contract


2.1

Contract Transmittal

A Contract Transmittal (ASD-15) provides authorization from the Division Chief, or delegated authority, to proceed with contracting with a specific contractor for a specific purpose and dollar amount, and must accompany each contract or amendment submitted to the ASD Contract Office.

The ASD-15 provides a summary of work to be performed; the purpose for contracting; justification for contracting outside of civil service, if applicable; the term of the contract; funding amount; identification of the contractor; and other essential elements of the contract.

The ASD-15, along with the contract package, must be received by the Contract Office no less than 60 days prior to the contract start date or amendment effective date to allow minimum time for processing and appropriate approvals. If an ASD-15 is submitted less than 60 days prior to the effective date of the requested action, justification must be provided on the ASD-15 addressing the events resulting in the "late" submittal.

NOTE: Contracts involving EDP services must be reviewed and approved by the Office of Information Systems prior to forwarding to the ASD Contract Office.

   
2.2

Interagency Agreement

    1. An "interagency agreement" is a written contract entered into between two or more California state agencies. Interagency agreements are exempt from the competitive bid process and therefore do not require advertising in the California State Contracts Register or approval of a Contract Advertising Exemption Request (Std. 821). The Regents of the University of California, Trustees of the California State University system and Community Colleges are all considered to be state entities.All interagency agreements will be processed using an Interagency Agreement (Std. 13).
    2. The ASD Contract Office will prepare the Std. 13 using information provided by the Contract Manager. Specifically, the Contract Manager must provide the legal names of the contracting parties, the term of the agreement, the statement of work, deliverables, budget, and the total dollar amount of the agreement.
      • Term

      Contracts for services should normally cover not more than one year (12 consecutive months). It is recognized that some circumstances may justify a contract for a longer period. Justification for multi-year contracts must be provided on the ASD-15.
      Contracts for services must not extend, either by original contract or by renewals or amendments, for more than a total period of 36 months, subject to select provisions.

      • Statement of Work

      The statement of work for an Interagency Agreement is the key to a successful contract. It must clearly identify the work to be performed or services to be provided. The Contract Manager should work with the contractor to clearly define the statement of work.

      • Deliverables

        The agreement must specify the product(s) the contractor will deliver to the ARB. Standard deliverables, such as progress reports and invoices, may be specified in the special provisions. It is the Contract Manager's responsibility to ensure all other deliverables needed to complete the project are addressed and clearly defined in the agreement. 

      • Budget

        A breakdown of costs must be included. The degree to which the costs must be itemized depends on the type of service(s) or product(s) to be charged. Contact the ASD Contract Office for assistance in determining the most appropriate budget breakdown structure for your respective agreement.

      • General Provisions

        General provisions are required by law, regulation or Department of General Services policy and apply to all State contractual agreements regardless of the initiating agency or specific service. The ASD Contract Office will provide a copy of the general provisions upon request.

      • Special Provisions

        Special provisions are terms and conditions that are specific to a particular agreement. The Contract Manager must provide the following to be included in the special provisions:

        • The identification and addresses of the Contract Managers of both ARB and the contracting state agency.
        • Invoicing instructions -- information that must be provided on the invoice, where they should be sent, how often, etc. Note: Unlike Standard Agreements, advance payments are permitted in an Interagency Agreement.
        • Contract deliverables instructions -- information that must be included in a progress or final report, where they should be sent, how often, etc.
2.3

Standard Agreement

  1. A "standard agreement" is a written contract entered into between the State and a public entity in which one party agrees to do or not to do a certain thing. It sets forth terms, conditions, and a statement of all work to be performed, and with the exceptions noted in this chapter, require advertising in the California State Contracts Register (CSCR) or approval of a Contract Advertising Exemption Request (Std. 821).

    1. Auxiliary Organizations
      Agreements between the State and an auxiliary organization of the California State University system are processed as Standard Agreements; however, such agreements are exempt from competitive bidding, and do not require advertising in the CSCR or approval of a Contract Advertising Exemption Request (Std. 821).
    2. Federal and Local Government
      Agreements between the State and federal governmental entities or local governmental entities will be processed as Standard Agreements however, such agreements are exempt from competitive bidding, and do not require advertising in the CSCR or approval of a Contract Advertising Exemption Request (Std. 821).
    3. Contracted Federal Laboratories and Non-Profit Organizations
      Agreements between the State and contracted laboratories of federal governmental entities or non-profit organizations are not exempt from the competitive bid process.

  2. All standard agreements will be processed on a Standard Agreement (Std. 2). The ASD Contract Office will prepare the Std. 2 using information provided by the Contract Manager. Specifically, the Contract Manager must provide the legal names of the contracting parties, the term of the agreement, the statement of work, deliverables, budget, and total dollar amount of the agreement.
  1. Term
    Contracts for services should normally cover not more than one year (12 consecutive months). It is recognized that some circumstances may justify a contract for a longer period. Justification for multi-year contracts must be provided on the ASD-15.

    All standard agreements will be processed on a Standard Agreement (Std. 2). The ASD Contract Office will prepare the Std. 2 using information provided by the Contract Manager. Specifically, the Contract Manager must provide the legal names of the contracting parties, the term of the agreement, the statement of work, deliverables, budget, and total dollar amount of the agreement.

    Contracts for services must not extend, either by original contract or by renewals or amendments, for more than a total period of 36 months, subject to select provisions.
  2. Statement of Work
    The statement of work for a Standard Agreement is the key to a successful contract. It must clearly state the work to be performed or services to be provided. The most successful contracts will include a statement of work that contains: 1) the determination of a level of quality sufficient to meet the need and guarantee the desired outcome, and 2) identification of the capability and qualifications required of a contractor to accomplish the stated outcome.
  3. Deliverables
    The agreement must specify the product(s) the contractor will deliver to the ARB. Standard deliverables, such as progress reports and invoices, may be specified in the special provisions. It is the Contract Manager's responsibility to ensure all other deliverables needed to complete the project are addressed and clearly defined in the agreement.
  4. Budget
    A breakdown of costs must be included. The degree to which the costs must be itemized depends on the type of service(s) or product(s) to be charged. Contact the ASD Contract Office for assistance in determining the most appropriate budget breakdown structure for your respective agreement.
  5. General Provisions
    General provisions required by law, regulation or Department of General Services policy apply to all State contractual agreements regardless of initiating agency or specific service. The ASD Contract Office will provide a copy of the general provisions upon request.
  6. Special Provisions
    Special provisions are terms and conditions that are specific to a particular agreement. The Contract Manager must provide the following to be included in the special provisions:
    • The identification and addresses of the Contract Managers of both ARB and the contractor.
    • Invoicing instructions -- information that must be provided on the invoice, where they should be sent, how often, etc. Advance payments are not permitted in Standard Agreements.
    • Contract deliverables instructions -- information that must be included in a progress or final report, where they should be sent, how often, etc.

C. Consultant services contracts have certain requirements that do not apply to other contracts. For competitively bid contracts, these special conditions must also be included in the IFB or RFP.

  1. Consultant services contracts of $1,000 or more shall contain detailed performance criteria and a schedule for performance.
  2. The contractor must provide a detailed analysis of the costs of performance of the contract.
  3. Consultant services of $5,000 or more shall have attached as part of the contract, a completed resume for each contract participant who will exercise a major administrative role or major policy or consultant role, as identified by the contractor.
   
2.4

Amendments

An amendment is a formal modification to a contract.

  1. An amendment must contain the same degree of specificity for changes that the original contract contained for the same purpose.
  2. Amendments must be entered into before the expiration of the original contract.
  3. Contracts awarded on the basis of law requiring competitive bidding may be modified or amended only if the contract so provides or if so authorized by the law requiring competitive bidding.
  4. An amendment may not be used to circumvent the competitive bidding process. Sole-source approval must be obtained for contracts when an amendment:
    • Increases the dollar amount by more than 30 percent, or
    • Changes or significantly increases the statement of work, or
    • Increases both the time and dollar amount, regardless of the amount increased.
2.5

Work Service Order

Work Service Order (WSO) is an informal contract for services and does not require advertising in the California State Contracts Register.

  1. WSO may be utilized to obtain services ONLY if all the following criteria apply:
    • The total dollar amount does not exceed $1,000.
    • Costs for labor (versus parts) comprise at least 51% of the total dollar amount.
    • The services are not on-going.
    • An order has not been split to avoid exceeding $1,000.
    • The services do not involve subscription services, repair of motorized vehicles, relocatable buildings or trailers, building repairs or alterations, or the leasing of real property (with the exception of meeting/conference room rental).
  2. To initiate a WSO, the requestor must submit a signed Intra Office Requisition (Form 5) to the ASD Contract Office. The following information must be included on, or attached to, the Form 5:
    • A clear and complete statement of the services to be performed.
    • The name, address and phone number of the proposed vendor.
    • If the cost of services is more than $500, two additional quotes are required and may be obtained through an informal (verbal or in writing) bid process. If the contractor is the sole representative for parts and services, a letter from the vendor on company letterhead must be provided which states that fact.
    • Period of performance (including month, days, or hours).
    • Cost breakdown of parts vs. labor, etc.
    • Division contact name and telephone number.

NOTE: Contact the Contract Office prior to authorizing any services to be performed.

   
2.6

Meeting/Conference Room Rental

A request to rent a meeting/conference room will be initiated with a Form 5 and processed through the Contract Office as a Work Service Order. All agreements for facility use must be reviewed by the Contract Office. 

NOTE: The State is prohibited from incurring costs for the purchase of coffee or food products or services. The costs for such products or services will not be reimbursed by the State.

   
2.7

Conference/Event Sponsorships

Conference and event sponsorships are considered sole source contracts and must be processed accordingly. See Chapter 5, Sole Source Agreements.

   

Chapter 3 - Invitation For Bid


   
3.1

Definition

An Invitation for Bid (IFB) is a solicitation document used to ensure that all bids received will be competitive as the result of all bidders bidding on exactly the same work or equipment, specifications, and contract obligations.

An IFB seeks an answer to the following: 

    "Here is exactly what we need to have done. Here are the qualification requirements, performance specifications, time frames, and requirements that must be met. How much will you charge us?"
3.2

Requirements

The ASD Contract Office will assist with the development of the IFB. The Contract Manager will be responsible for providing the ASD Contract Office with the following information:

A. Dates and Times

    The bid submission and public bid opening should be coordinated with the ASD Contract Office. In order to allow a bidder sufficient time to complete the Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise requirements, a minimum of thirty days should be allowed for bid preparation.

B. Statement of Work

    An IFB must include standards for measurable performance, quality controls, reporting, record keeping requirements and any other tasks to be performed as part of the contract. The statement of work will be incorporated into and become a part of the contract.

C. Evaluation Criteria

    Since an IFB sets forth specific requirements, the evaluation criteria of responses consists of basic "yes" or "no" answers. There is no "fully", "barely", "almost" or "exceeded" level of evaluation. The selection process is merely the identification of that vendor who meets all of the requirements at the lowest monetary level.

    An example of the type of question that could be asked in evaluating an IFB is:

      The individual or firm awarded this contract must have a minimum of two years experience performing routine janitorial services of an office building at least x square feet in size. Bidders that do not meet this requirement will not be considered eligible for the award of this contract.

      Q: Do you have at least two years experience cleaning an office building of at least x sq.ft. in size? yes no (check one)

      For verification purposes, please provide the name and phone number of the individual or firm the services were performed for and the address of the building.

    D. General Provisions

      General provisions are required by law, regulation or Department of General Services policy and apply to all State contractual agreements regardless of initiating agency or specific service. The ASD Contract Office will provide a copy of the general provisions upon request.

    E. Special Provisions

      Special provisions are terms and conditions that are specific to a particular agreement. The Contract Manager must provide the following to be included in the special provisions:

      1. The identification and addresses of the Contract Managers of both ARB and the contractor.
      2. Invoicing instructions -- information that must be provided in the invoice, where they should be sent, how often, etc. Advance payments are not permitted.
      3. Contract deliverables instructions -- information that must be included in a progress or final report, where they should be sent, how often, etc.

    F. Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise

      California state law requires that goals of participation involving Disabled Veteran Business Enterprises (DVBE) be met for each contract entered into by and between the State and outside contractors. Contact the ASD Contract Office to obtain a DVBE requirements package.

   
3.3

Receipt of Bids

The ASD Contract Office will receive bids submitted in response to the IFB. The respective Contract Analyst's name, address and telephone number will be identified in the IFB.

All bids will be date-stamped at the time received. Under no circumstances will bids received after the date and time specified in the IFB be considered.

NOTE: Bids must not be opened prior to the public bid opening.

   
3.4

Bid Opening

The bids will be publicly opened and read aloud by the Contract Analyst at the date, time and location specified in the IFB. Attendees will be informed of the apparent low bidder and reminded that the award will not be official until Small Business, Target Area, and Employment and Economic Incentive Act preferences, if requested, have been applied and a review of the bids for responsiveness to the administrative and specific requirements of the IFB have been completed.

   
3.5

Bid Evaluation

After the bids have been opened, the administrative documents will be reviewed and any preferences requested will be verified by the ASD Contract Office and applied accordingly. After this determination has been made, the Division will review the lowest bid for a determination of responsiveness to the IFB requirements. If the bid is found to be non-responsive to the requirements of the IFB, the bid will be determined ineligible for award of the contract and the next lowest bid will be evaluated until a responsive bid is found.

If the low bid is deemed to be nonresponsive to the IFB for any reason including failure to meet the DVBE or other requirements, the bidder will be notified by the ASD Contract Office.

All bids may be rejected in any case where it is determined that bids are not competitive, or where the cost is not reasonable.

   
3.6

Award Notification

A "Notice of Intent to Award" will be publicly posted by the ASD Contract Office if a written request is received from any bidder. This notice will be posted for at least 5 working days prior to making the award.:

The bidder with the lowest bid shall be awarded the contract and informed in writing by the ASD Contract Office. The ASD Contract Office will also inform the DVBEs identified for use by the bidder, that the bid has been awarded and that their name was provided as a subcontractor.

If less than three bids are received, full explanation and justification must accompany the contract, including the names and addresses of the firms and individuals who requested to bid and the reasons why they did not bid, or the reason why the agency believes that there is but a single source for the service. Such explanation should contain information in sufficient detail to support and justify the Board's decision to award the contract without three bids.

   
3.7

Steps and Time Lines 

The general steps and approximate time involved in the IFB solicitation process are shown in Tables 1 and 2, Pre-Award and Post-Award, respectively. The amount of time will vary with each contract. These are provided as general guidelines.

 Table 1

Pre-Award

Steps
Approximate Time
(1) Division develops the IFB (Contact ASD Contract Office for assistance).
15 - 30 Days
(2) Division submits proposed IFB and advertisement to ASD Contacts Office for review and publishing in the California State Contracts Register.
17 - 20 Days - Advertisement must appear in the CSCR 14 days. 
(3) Division releases the IFB to known vendors and all who responded to the ad. The IFB may not be released prior to the advertisement being published in the CSCR.
45 Days - generally the minimum amount of time bidders are granted after the publication date to submit a bid response. 
(4) Division maintains a list of recipients of the IFB.
Within 45 days as listed above.
(5) ASD Contract Office receives sealed bids by established due date.
Within 45 days as listed above.
(6) ASD Contract Analyst publicly opens and reads bids aloud at the time, place and date specified in the IFB.
Within 45 days as listed above.
(7) ASD Contract Office reviews and evaluates bids for responsiveness to administrative requirements.
1 - 5 Days - DVBE review and verification of preferences.
(8) Division reviews and evaluates bids for pass/fail determination of IFB technical requirements for determination of lowest responsible bidder.
1 - 5 Days 
(9) ASD Contract Office awards contract.
1-2 Days

Table 2

Post-Award 

Steps
Approximate Time
(1) ASD Contract Office reviews package and submits to ASD Fiscal Branch.
3 - 5 Days - from receipt of complete contract package from Division.
(3) ASD Fiscal Branch reviews and encumbers funds.
3 - 7 Days
(4) ASD Contract Office forwards contract package to Contractor for signature.
1 - 3 Days
(5) Contractor reviews, signs and returns the contract to ASD Contract Office.
15 - 30 Days - minimum. 
(6) ASD Contract Office reviews and submits the contract for ARB authorized signature.
1 - 3 Day
(7) If DGS approval is not required, the contract is considered fully executed. The ASD Contract Office prepares contract and distributes as appropriate. (No further action necessary)  

If DGS approval is required, the ASD Contract Office prepares the package and transmittal for DGS review. 
1 - 2 Days
 

1 - 2 Days
(8) DGS reviews and approves contract.
10 Days
(9) The contract is fully executed. The ASD Contract Office distributes as appropriate. 
1 - 2 Days

Chapter 4 - Request For Proposal


4.1

Definition

A "Request For Proposal" (RFP) is a competitive bid solicitation document that is used when a desired contract goal (objective) can be defined, but a comparison of approaches, qualifications and cost is required to achieve an optimum solution at an optimum price.

An RFP seeks an answer to the following:

      "Here is what we wish to accomplish. Here are the qualification requirements, performance specifications, time frames, and other requirements that must be met. How would you accomplish the job and for how much?"

An RFP should not be used when the service or equipment to be hired is standard, routine, or common, or when there is a standard associated with the service or equipment to be hired. For example, the hiring of a pest-control firm to do routine exterminations should be accomplished through an IFB, not an RFP.

An RFP must include a requirement that bidders submit cost proposals in a separate, sealed envelope from the administrative documents.

   
4.2

Evaluation Methods

For purposes of awarding a contract pursuant to an RFP there are two methods for evaluating proposals and awarding contracts -- the Primary Method and the Secondary Method.

A. Primary Method

Proposals received as a result of the primary RFP method must be evaluated and the contract awarded in the following manner:

  • Review all eligible proposals to determine which ones meet the requirements and the technical standards specified in the RFP. Proposal standards should be set so that every proposer deemed to meet the standards as specified in the RFP could perform at the level required.
  • The sealed envelopes containing the cost information for those proposals that meet the requirements and technical standards shall be publicly opened and read. The contract must be awarded to the lowest-cost responsible bidder.

B. Secondary Method

    Use of the secondary RFP method should be limited to those instances in which agencies are seeking a unique solution to a problem or situation that cannot necessarily be resolved by the lowest bidder.

    RFPs which provide for a contract award using the secondary method have the incidental effect of diluting the benefit of the small-business preference. Therefore, the Department of General Services (DGS) discourages the use of such RFPs.

    Contracts that are awarded through the use of the secondary method will not be approved by DGS unless the agency can demonstrate that responsible certified small businesses were not prejudiced by use of the secondary RFP method. DGS may consider the secondary RFP method to be prejudicial against certified small businesses if a responsible certified small business would have qualified as the proposer offering the lowest cost.

    Any evaluation and scoring method resulting in an award to the highest-scored proposal must ensure that substantial weight shall be given to the contract price offered by the proposer. When scoring a proposal, cost/value effectiveness and cost adequacy may be judged and evaluated, but this must be in addition to the actual price component.

    In those instances in which an agency seeks a novel type of approach or solution to a situation or problem and the agency believes the contractor offering the lowest cost will not necessarily employ the most effective methods, the agency can use the secondary RFP method.

    Proposals received as a result of the secondary RFP method must be evaluated and the contract awarded in the following manner:

    Review all eligible proposals to determine which ones meet the format requirements specified in the RFP. Those proposals that meet the format requirements shall be submitted to an agency evaluation committee. The evaluation committee will evaluate and score proposals using the methods specified in the RFP. The contract must be awarded to the responsible bidder whose proposal is given the highest score by an evaluation committee.

The following table outlines the differences:

 
Primary RFP
Secondary RFP
Services are complex, but not uncommon or unique.
Services are complex, uncommon, or unique.
Performance requires varying methods or approaches but not innovation or creativity  

The methods and approaches used may not differ significantly from one bidder to another, which allows costs to be used as the deciding factor for making the award.
Performance requires unusual, innovative, or creative techniques, methods and approaches.  

The quality of expertise and approaches, methods, and innovation used may differ significantly from one bidder to another.
The statement of work is fairly well defined in terms of services or functions that must be performed as are the time frames that are required.
The statement of work is less precisely defined and may contain only the agency's needs and goals or objectives that must be met.
Costs proposals are submitted in a separate sealed envelope apart from the technical proposal.
Price may appear as a section within the technical proposal and must be a significant factor. Price does not mean cost effectiveness.
Technical proposals are reviewed, evaluated, and scored for compliance with format, content, and qualification requirements.
Technical proposals are evaluated and scored. Oral interviews are optional. Passing points may be set to determine the finalists.
Cost proposals are not scored.
The cost component is either scored against criteria stated in the RFP or subjected to a formula to convert the quoted cost into score or point values.
Qualified proposals that are responsive to the RFP requirements will have their cost/price proposals publicly opened and read.
Cost proposals are not announced or publicly read.
Following the opening and reading of cost proposals adjustments are made for applicable small business, TACPA, and EEIA preferences.
Cost proposals are adjusted for applicable small business, TACPA and EEIA preferences.
A certified small business receives an amount equal to five percent of the lowest cost proposal submitted by a non-small business reduced from its cost proposal.
A certified small business will have added to its proposal score five percent of the cost component points earned by the highest-scored proposal submitted by a non-small business.
Award is to the responsible bidder offering the lowest cost for its services.
Award is to the responsible bidder earning the highest overall score.
   
4.3

Requirements

An RFP must be written as precise as possible to ensure that all proposals are accomplishing the same goal. The more thoroughly specific needs, requirements, goals, and objectives are stated in the RFP, the more complete, responsive, and acceptable the proposals received will be. RFPs should include:

A. Statement of Work

  • A clear, precise description of the work to be performed, services to be provided, problem to be solved, or the goals and objectives to be met.
  • An explanation in realistic terms of what the bidder is expected to accomplish including any desired approach to the problem and the specific functions, tasks, or activities that must be performed, in their order of importance and probable sequence.
  • Practical and policy information, technological requirements or specifications, and legal limitations, if any.
  • Specific questions to be answered or issues to be addressed.
  • Performance time lines or completion dates.
  • Required quality control standards to be met, if applicable.
  • A description of the items, products, or results to be delivered.
  • The format and number of copies of the completed progress reports and final report, if applicable.
    The extent and nature of the assistance and cooperation from the State that will be available to the bidder.

B. Proposal Instructions

  • A description of the format that proposals must follow and the elements they shall contain. RFPs must provide:
  • Standards the agency will use in evaluating proposals.
  • Information on how the state will select the winning proposal.
  • Date to submit questions or seek clarification of the RFP.
  • Date of Bidders' Conference, if applicable.
  • Date and time by which the proposals must be submitted.
  • Timetable the agency will follow in reviewing and evaluating proposals.
  • Date and time of cost proposal opening.
  • Anticipated contract term.

  C. Payment Terms or Restrictions:

  • Whether and to what extent progress payments will be allowed.
  • Whether payments are subject to payment withholds.
  • Penalties for late or inadequate performance.
  • Known or estimated budgetary limitations on the contract price, if applicable.
D. Contract Provisions
  • Provisions that will appear in the resulting contract including the provisions printed on the back of the Std. 2.
  • Any terms or provisions that will place a contingent liability on the contractor or affect the contractor's operating costs.
E. Bidder's Qualifications/Experience
  • Proof that the bidder, if a corporation, is in good standing and qualified to conduct business in California.
  • For bidders that are nonprofit organizations, proof of nonprofit status.
  • Copies of current business licenses, professional certifications, or other credentials.
  • Proof of financial solvency or stability (e.g., balance sheets and income statements for one year or more), as deemed applicable.
  • A list of current or former references for whom the bidder has performed similar work.
  • A brief list of similar types of contracts that were successfully concluded, with a sample of such work.
F. Planned Personnel
  • A description of the lead personnel and anticipated supporting personnel to be employed during performance (by classification or title) and their qualifications to perform the work.
  • Identification of a project coordinator (recommended for all bid documents but required when consultants are sought).
  • Resumes for each major contract participant who will exercise a major policy, administrative, or consultative role in carrying out the services (required by law for consultant contracts).
G. Approach

An overall description of the techniques, approaches, and methods to be used in performing the services.

  • For cost reimbursement contracts with consultants, the amount of time and manpower to be expended and the equipment and facilities to be utilized, if applicable.
  • If subcontractors are contemplated, identification of those persons or firms, the portions and monetary percentages of the work to be done by the subcontractors, how they were selected and why, resumes of each major subcontract participant, and a description of how subcontracted work will be controlled, monitored, and evaluated.
H. Budget
 
    The total cost of the project, with a detailed breakdown showing how the costs were
    determined, and the desired method of payment. The detailed budget breakdown may
    include:
  • Identification of position/classification titles funded.
  • Salary rates or ranges.
  • Percentage of time devoted to the work.
  • Fringe benefits.
  • Operating expenses.
  • Travel and per diem expenses.
  • Overhead or indirect costs.
  • Subcontractors with the same type of cost details.
  • Other costs.
    NOTE: Equipment purchase through a contract is restricted. Please contact the ASD Contract Office if purchase of equipment is anticipated in the contract.
I. Dates and Times

The dates and times of bid submission and public bid opening (primary method). These dates should be coordinated with the ASD Contract Office. In order to allow a bidder sufficient time to complete the Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise requirements, a minimum of thirty days should be allowed for bid preparation. Adequate time for administrative and technical evaluation prior to the opening of cost proposals must be considered when setting a date for the public bid opening.

J. Evaluation and Scoring Criteria

Scoring criteria must be developed that adequately determines the following:

    • Does the bidding firm understand the agency's problem or needs?
    • Can the bidder fit this work into its existing obligations?
    • Is the approach to the problem, recommended method, and procedure reasonable and feasible?
    • Do the expected results, outcomes, and deliverables appear to be achievable in a timely manner, given the approaches, methods and procedures proposed?
    • Does the firm have the organization, management capability and competency, fiscal and personnel resources, and experience to perform the services being sought?
    • Has the firm had experience performing work of a similar nature, size, and scope?
    • Does the proposer's past experience complement the services being sought, or is the proposer's past experience appropriate to qualify the proposer to perform these services?
    • What are the professional qualifications of the personnel that the firm will commit to the project?
    • Did the proposer allocate sufficient staff resources?
    • Has the proposer addressed all goals, objectives, service demands, and required deliverables specified in the RFP?
    • Does the proposer appear to be able to handle and resolve unanticipated complications and delays without interrupting the delivery of services?
    • Are proposed time lines for performance presented by the proposer feasible?
    • Did the proposer include plans that will show how performance will be monitored and measured to ensure that all services are successfully performed and that the objectives, goals, and requirements are met?
    • Does the proposer have sound fiscal, accounting and cost-monitoring or budget-monitoring procedures in place?

    The factors to be used in proposal evaluation and contractor selection may not be changed or added after the RFP has been distributed without adequate notice to all potential proposers through an addendum.

K. Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise
 
California state law requires that goals of participation involving Disabled Veteran Business Enterprises (DVBE) be met for each contract entered into by and between the State and outside contractors. Contact the ASD Contract Office to obtain a DVBE requirements package.

4.4

Receipt of Proposals

The ASD Contract Office will receive proposals submitted in response to the RFP. The respective Contract Analyst's name, address and telephone number will be identified in the RFP.All proposals will be date-stamped at the time received. Under no circumstances will proposals be accepted and deemed responsive after the date and time specified in the RFP. Such proposals will be returned unopened by the Contract Office.

4.5

Proposal Evaluation 

The evaluation of the administrative documents occurs prior to the technical review. Only those proposals passing administrative review will be eligible for technical evaluation.

A. Administrative Review The administrative documents will be evaluated by the ASD Contract Office. Proposals that fail to meet the Disabled Business Enterprise requirements will be deemed non-responsive and ineligible for award.

B. Technical Evaluation
Proposals will be evaluated and scored by the division using the criteria set forth in the RFP.

 

4.6

Cost Proposal Opening

A. Primary Method

Cost proposals that are responsive to both the administrative and technical requirements will be publicly opened and read at the date, time, and location specified in the RFP.

B. Secondary Method

Cost proposals that are responsive to the administrative requirements are evaluated as part of the technical proposal.

4.7

Award Notification

A "Notice of Intent to Award" will be publicly posted by the ASD Contract Office.The bidder with the lowest responsible proposal for a primary method RFP, or the proposal receiving the highest score for a secondary RFP shall be awarded the contract and informed in writing by the ASD Contract Office. The ASD Contract Office will also inform the DVBEs identified for use by the bidder that the proposal has been awarded and that their name was provided as a subcontractor.If only one competitive bid or proposal has been received, the appropriateness or reasonableness of the cost must be justified by the Division requesting to contract. The following information must be provided at the time of contract processing:

    1. Cost information in sufficient detail to support and justify the contract.
    2. Cost information for similar services, differences should be noted and explained.
    3. Special factors affecting the cost under the contract.
4.8

Steps and Time Lines 

The general steps and time involved in the RFP solicitation process are shown in Tables 1 and 2, Pre-Award and Post-Award, respectively. The amount of time will vary with each contract depending on staff availability and contract complexity. These are provided as general guidelines.

Table 1

 
Pre-Award
Steps Approximate Time
(1) Division develops the RFP (Contact ASD Contract Office for assistance). 
15-30 Days 
(2) Division submits proposed RFP and advertisement to ASD Contacts Office for review and publishing in the California State Contracts Register.
17 - 20 Days - Advertisement must appear in CSCR 14 days.
(3) Division releases the RFP. The RFP may not be released prior to the advertisement being published in the CSCR.
45 Days - the minimum amount of time bidders are granted after the publication date to submit a proposal response. 
(4) Division maintains a list of recipients of the RFP.
Within 45 days as listed above.
(5) ASD Contract Office receives sealed proposals by established due date.
Within 45 days as listed above.
(6) ASD Contract Office reviews and evaluates bids for responsiveness to administrative requirements.
1-3 Days - DVBE review and verification of preferences.
(7) Division reviews and evaluates proposals for responsiveness to the RFP technical requirements.
1-3 Days
(8) ASD Contract Analyst publicly opens and reads cost proposals aloud at the time, place and date specified in the RFP (primary method only).
Within 1-3 days as listed above.
(9) ASD Contract Office posts Notice of Intent to Award 
Posted for 5 Days
(10) ASD Contract Office awards contract.
Varies
   

Table 2

 

Post-Award 

Steps

Approximate Time

(1) ASD Contract Office reviews contract and submits to ASD Fiscal.
3 - 5 Days - from receipt of complete contract package from Division.
(3) ASD Fiscal reviews and encumbers funds.
3 - 7 Days
(4) ASD Contract Office forwards contract to Contractor for signature.
1 - 3 Days
(5) Contractor reviews, signs and returns the contract to ASD Contract Office.
15 - 30 Days - minimum. 
(6) ASD Contract Office reviews and submits the contract for ARB authorized signature.
1 - 3 Days
(7) If DGS approval is not required, the contract is considered fully executed. The ASD Contract Office distributes as appropriate. (No further action necessary)  

If DGS approval is required, the ASD Contract Office prepares the contract and transmittal for DGS review. 
1 - 2 Days   
 
 

1 - 2 Days
(8) DGS reviews and approves contract.
10 Days
(9) The contract is considered fully executed. The ASD Contract Office distributes as appropriate. 
1 - 2 Days
   

Chapter 5 - Sole Source Agreements


5.1
Definition

A sole source agreement is defined as a procurement or contract for goods or services when only a single business enterprise is afforded the opportunity to offer the State a price for the specified goods or services.

This request should be initiated as soon as the need for a sole source contract is identified as the approval process may take from 6-8 weeks.
 
5.2
Executive Order W-103-94

Current state policy requires that procurement and contracts for goods and/or services be awarded through the use of a competitive bid process except under specific circumstances as set forth by law, or as determined to be in the best interest of the State. Executive Order W-103-94, issued in August 1994, reinforces this policy and requires that any and all "sole source" contracts entered into by the State of California shall, without exception, have the express written approval of the Cabinet-level Agency Secretary with jurisdiction over the contract, as well as the Department of General Services. To enter into a sole source contract, approval of a sole source exemption request is required.
 
5.3

Exemption Request Procedures

Obtaining approval of a sole source contract exemption request is a complex process requiring approval of both the Agency Secretary and the Department of General Services, Office of Procurement. All requests must be submitted to the Contract Office for processing.

The documents necessary to obtain the respective approvals are:

  • ASD-15 signed by the respective Division Chief.
  • Contract Advertising Exemption Request, Std 821.
  • Memo from the ARB Chairman to the Agency Secretary requesting signature approval to proceed with a sole source contract (including a disk copy).

Instructions for completing the documents are as follows:

A. Contract Advertising Exemption Request (Std. 821)

    A Std. 821 must provide a justification for why the services cannot be competitively bid. The ASD Contract Office will submit the completed Std. 821 to the Executive Officer of the requesting division for signature.
     

B. Memo to Agency Secretary

    All requests must be developed in the standard issue memo format, addressed to the Secretary of Cal/EPA from the ARB Chairman. (Please contact the ASD Contract Office for assistance with the format). Requests must include the following information:
    1. Whether the request is for a new or an amended effort.
    2. The proposed contractor's name.
    3. If an amendment, the original contract number and the original and all subsequent amended dollar amounts. A description of the relationship between the additional and original work, and why any added services cannot be bid as a separate contract.
    4. The basis for the sole source exemption request. Is the proposed contractor the only source, or is the request based on being in the "best interest of the State"?
        • Explain to anyone unfamiliar with the program what the State is receiving through this contract. Outline services to be provided through the contract.
        • Sequence the events leading to the current situation.
        • Provide assurance that the cost of the service is reasonable (including a price analysis, market survey, or other cost comparison analysis).
    5. Verification of the claim.
      A market survey must be conducted and documentation providing a complete description of the contracts and other efforts made to demonstrate that the proposed contractor is either the only source for the service, or how it was determined that the proposed contract is in the best interest of the State must be provided.

Chapter 6 - Protests

6.1 Protest Procedures

If a bidder mentions filing a protest DO NOT advise them of the merits of their potential protest. It is not ARB's role nor responsibility to determine whether a protest is valid; further, discussing the merits of a protest with a potential protestor may be detrimental to the Board.

When a bidder requests information regarding protest procedures, treat the bidder courteously and immediately refer them to the ARB Contract Officer. It is the Contract Officer's responsibility to provide the bidder with information regarding protest procedures. The Contract Officer will notify ARB Legal of the protest and will be available to work with them regarding any administrative protest issues.

If an intent to protest has been filed, the contract cannot be awarded until the protest is withdrawn or DGS has rendered a decision.

Chapter 7 - Contract Management

7.1 Introduction

The Contract Manager is responsible for managing a contract and monitoring the contractor's performance. The Contract Manager serves as a liaison with the contractor and may perform tasks ranging from the request of contract services through the performance and final payment for completed services. The Contract Office is available to assist with contract problems.
   
7.2

Responsibilities of the Contract Manager

A. Typical responsibilities of the Contract Manager are as follows:

  • Develop and write a clear, concise, detailed description of the work to be performed.
  • Review the draft contract for contract provisions, statement of work, technical requirements, completion dates, benchmarks, time lines, estimated quantities, dollar amounts, and final product.
  • Ensure compliance with all federal or special regulations.
  • Ensure that funding is available.
  • Notify the contractor to begin work.
  • Monitor the contract to ensure compliance with all contract provisions.
  • Assess and request amendments, renewals or new contracts as required allowing sufficient time to process and execute such changes before the contract expires or funds are depleted in order to prevent a lapse in service. Often, two to three months are required for amendments, and three to eight months for new contracts.
  • Review and approve invoices for payment to substantiate expenditures for work performed.
  • Monitor contract expenditures.
  • Monitor use of DVBE subcontractors and suppliers to ensure attainment of approved contract participation goals.
  • Verify that the contractor has fulfilled all requirements of the contract before approving the final invoice.
  • Identify and approve the final invoice, as appropriate, and forward it to accounting for payment.
  • Approve the final product(s) or service(s).
  • Complete a Contractor Evaluation form - (Std. 4), for consultant services contracts of $5,000 or more, with the exception of Interagency Agreements or contracts with other governmental entities. Evaluations must be complete and give specifics as to satisfactory or unsatisfactory performance by the contracting firm and its staff. A completed Std. 4 must be submitted to the ASD Contracts Office within 30 days after completion of a contract.

B. The Contract Manager is not authorized to take the following actions:

  • Instruct the contractor to start work before the contract is fully executed and approved.
  • Change the description or statement of work of the contract.
  • Direct the contractor to do work that is not specifically described in the contract.
  • Sign any contract or agreement form.

C. The Contract Manager must not authorize payment to the contractor for any work not performed satisfactorily. In addition, the Contract Manager is not authorized to do the following without an executed and approved contract amendment in place:

  • Extend the time period of the contract
  • Allow the contractor to incur costs over the original limit set in the contract.