A procuring agency must make its bid award to the lowest responsible and responsive bidder whose bid meets the ITB requirements and criteria. The results of the bid opening are limited to the apparent low bidder, which may or may not be awarded the contract.
After the opening, the procuring agency must evaluate each bid to determine whether it complies with all ITB requirements, specifications and ability of the bidder to perform the contract.
The procuring agency must consider all applicable preferences (refer to OAR 125-247-0600 and OAR 125-246-0300 through 0324), and then evaluate each bid to determine which one offers the lowest cost to the state according to the ITB.
If bids are received that are identical in price and meet all of the requirements established in the solicitation, then the procuring agency must use the following priority to resolve the tie bid:Award to the bidder who is offering products or services manufactured, produced or that will be performed in Oregon.Award through a random drawing if none or all of the tie bids are bidders offering products or services manufactured, produced or that will be performed in Oregon.
Responsive and responsible As part of an evaluation process, the procuring agency must determine whether the bidder is responsive and responsible.
A responsive bid unequivocally commits to the requirements of the ITB. A responsive bidder is one whose bid substantially complies with the ITB and all prescribed procurement procedures and requirements and contains no material defects.
A material defect is one that affects price, quality, quantity, or delivery terms. Material deficiencies affecting responsiveness may not be corrected. Some examples of non-responsiveness are:
- The bid does not meet the minimum specifications or requirements for the products, services or construction.
- The bid document makes exception to terms and conditions in the solicitation.
- The bid is submitted without pricing or with conditional pricing.
A responsible bidder has the capability and capacity to carry out all contractual responsibilities, and has:
- Appropriate financial, material, equipment, facility, and personnel resources and expertise, or has the ability to obtain the resources and expertise, necessary to meet all contractual responsibilities.
- Completed previous contracts of a similar nature with a satisfactory record of performance.
- A satisfactory record of integrity.
- The legal qualifications to contract with the agency.
- Complied with the tax laws of the state.
- A certification from DAS for training in pay equity provisions of state law.
- Supplied all necessary information related to the determination of responsibility.
- No record of being debarred by the state or agency.
Life cycle costing An agency must consider the use of life cycle costing as an evaluation method to quantify the total cost of ownership. This method calculates the cost to acquire, operate, support and dispose of a product over its useful life.
The procuring agency may use this method to include any additional costs that relate to adverse impacts of a product, for example, impacts to the environment or public health. Using this method, award of a contract is not based solely on the lowest price, and a low bid would include life cycle costing.
If an agency elects to use life cycle costing for evaluation, the ITB must:
- Describe how life cycle costing will be considered and applied in the evaluation process and award decision.
- Provide relevant information for the evaluation of the bid, for example, projected product usage, operating environment, and operating period.
- Describe any information that a bidder must provide in their bid, including relevant life cycle costs and supporting information.
Successive rounds of bidding The procuring agency has the ability to perform successive rounds of bidding to gain the best offer if the initial ITB documents provide for this option. In this instance, a bid’s specifications, terms and conditions, or pricing structure may be revised and reissued for bidding. Bidders must be allowed adequate time to revise and resubmit their bids in response to the requirements in the newly revised ITB.
At each successive round, scoring of prior bids may be disregarded and new scoring may be performed based on the new bids. After each round, the procuring agency may disqualify bidders if the bids did not meet requirements, or if the bids did not meet a minimum evaluation score. A disqualified bidder may be reinstated in a later round if the procuring agency determines that reason for rejection is no longer applicable based on changes to the ITB.
Multi-step Competitive Sealed Bidding The multi-step Competitive Sealed Bidding method is a combination of the Competitive Sealed Proposals process (Phase one) and the Competitive Sealed Bidding process (Phase two). This method is preferred under circumstances where an award to the lowest responsive, responsible bidder is desired, but impractical as the solicitation does not define the product or services requirements in a manner that permits an award based on price. The multi-step Competitive Sealed Bidding method allows the procuring agency to:
- Evaluate technical proposals.
- Rank bidders.
- Perform discussions.
- Allow revised priced proposals, if necessary.
- Identify the lowest, responsive and responsible bidder.
In this process, the procuring agency may instruct bidders to submit their bid pricing in a separately sealed envelope along with the technical proposals. Alternatively, the procuring agency may instruct bidders to submit their bid pricing after technical proposals have been submitted and evaluated and after completing discussions on the technical proposals. Regardless of the approach, the priced bids are only considered in step two and only for those bidders whose unpriced technical proposals are found acceptable in step one.
Unless the procuring agency instructed bid pricing to be submitted during Phase one, notification of the due date and time for bid pricing should be issued only to bidders deemed acceptable in Phase one.
If a separate submission of the bid pricing is required in Phase two, the procuring agency must provide all bidders whose unpriced technical proposals are found acceptable in Phase one an opportunity to submit their bid pricing.