4.28.040 Competitive bidding and award.
A. General. Except as expressly authorized elsewhere in this chapter or by state law, the provisions of this section shall apply when the following thresholds have been met:
1. To any purchase of material, supplies, and equipment of $350,000 or more; and
2. To any work defined as a “public work” in RCW 39.04.010, as now enacted or hereafter amended, where the cost is estimated to exceed the limitations set forth in RCW 35.23.352, as now enacted or hereafter amended.
B. Invitation for Bids. An invitation for bids shall be issued which shall include the specifications and the contractual terms and conditions applicable to the procurement, and any other supplemental criteria for determining bid responsiveness or bidder responsibility applicable to the particular purchase or project which must be met.
1. Maximum Practicable Competition. All specifications shall be drafted so as to promote overall economy for the purposes intended and encourage maximum free and open competition in satisfying the city’s needs. The policy enunciated in this section applies to all specifications including, but not limited to, those prepared for the city by architects, engineers, designers, and draftsmen.
2. “Brand Name or Equal” Specification. Brand name or equal specifications may be used when the director of finance and asset management or his/her designee determines in writing that use of a brand name or equal specification is in the city’s best interest, such as when there is a sole source or single source.
D. Public Notice. Public notice of the invitation for bids shall be given not less than 14 calendar days prior to the date set forth therein for the opening of bids. Such notice shall be in any form that satisfies applicable law. The public notice shall state the date and time of bid opening. Bids not received by the date and time stated for bid opening will not be accepted or considered.
E. Bid Opening. Bids shall be opened publicly by the director of finance and asset management or his/her designee at the time and place designated in the invitation for bids. The amount of each bid, and such other relevant information as he/she deems appropriate, together with the name of each bidder, shall be recorded. The record and each bid shall be open to public inspection.
F. Bids to Comply with Regulations. All persons, associations or corporations interested in responding to a bid shall comply strictly with the terms of the notice of invitation for bids and the specifications and evaluation criteria issued or published by the city, together with all relevant state laws and supplemental bidder criteria, if applicable, the terms of which shall be deemed included in such specifications whether or not they are expressly set out therein.
G. Bid Evaluation. Bids shall be evaluated based on the specifications and other relevant evaluation criteria set forth in the bid specifications and in accordance with this code, city policies and applicable state and federal law.
H. Correction or Withdrawal of Bids – Bid Irregularities – Cancellation of Awards. Correction or withdrawal of erroneous bids or bid irregularities before or after bid opening, or cancellation of awards or contracts based on such bid mistakes or irregularities, may be permitted by the city as provided in this section.
1. Mistakes discovered before bid opening may be modified or the bid may be withdrawn by written or electronic notice received in the office designated in the invitation for bids prior to the time set for opening.
2. After bid opening, corrections in or withdrawal of bids shall be permitted only to the extent that the bidder can show by clear and convincing evidence that a mistake was made, the nature of the mistake, and the bid price actually intended. However, downward correction of a bid, which would displace the apparent low bidder, and upward corrections of a bid submitted by the apparent low bidder, which would not displace the bid as the apparent low bid, shall only be permitted if the error made and the intended bid price can be determined solely from the bid documents in the sole discretion of the city. All decisions to permit the correction or withdrawal of bids after bid opening, or to cancel awards or contracts based on bid mistakes, shall be made by the city council for contracts exceeding $350,000 and the applicable department director, or other person designated by the city, for contracts of $350,000 or less. Notwithstanding anything in this chapter, the director of finance and asset management or his/her designee shall have the authority to waive immaterial irregularities that do not give a bidder a competitive advantage or benefit not enjoyed by other bidders.
3. The call for bids shall state the reserved right of the city to reject any and all bids and to waive irregularities in any bid; provided, that no bidder shall be permitted to gain unfair advantage over other bidders under this section.
I. Award. For contracts exceeding $350,000, a description of the bids, along with the recommendation of the appropriate department and a written statement of any mistakes, corrections, or irregularities in the bids as described above, shall be submitted to the city council. The city council may award the bid to the lowest responsive, responsible bidder as determined under the standards set forth in the code and under state law, or may reject any or all bids in its discretion and make further call for bids.
For contracts of $350,000 or less, the applicable department director, or other person designated by the city, may award the bid to the lowest responsive, responsible bidder as determined under the standards set forth in the code and under state law, or may reject any or all bids in its discretion and make further call for bids.
If awarded, the contract shall be awarded to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder whose bid meets the specifications and evaluation criteria set forth in the invitation for bids. If no responsive bid is received on the first call, the city may readvertise and make a second call or may enter into a contract without any further call or may purchase the supplies, materials, equipment or services, or perform such work and improvement in any manner authorized by law. (Ord. 6728 § 1, 2023; Ord. 6436 § 4, 2018; Ord. 6187 § 1, 2014.)