CHAPTER 5A. DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION.

§5A-3-37. Reciprocal preference; preference for resident vendors for certain contracts.

 (a) For purposes of this section, a vendor shall be deemed to be a resident of this state if such vendor:

(1) Is registered in accordance with §11-12-1 et seq. of this code to transact business within the State of West Virginia;

(2) Maintains its headquarters or principal place of business in the state;

(3) Has actually paid, and not just applied to pay, personal property taxes imposed by chapter 11 of this code on equipment used in the regular course of supplying services or commodities of the general type offered; and

(4) Has actually paid, and not just applied to pay, all required business taxes imposed by chapter 11 of this code.

(b) Except as provided in §5A-3-37(c) of this code, in any instance that a purchase of commodities or printing by the director or by a state spending unit is required under the provisions of this article to be made upon competitive bids, preference shall only be given to resident vendors of West Virginia against a nonresident vendor from any state that gives or requires a preference to bidders from that state. The amount of the preference shall be equal to the amount of the preference given or required by the state of the nonresident vendor for that particular supply.

(c)(1) In any instance that a purchase of motor vehicles or construction and maintenance equipment and machinery used in highway and other infrastructure projects by the director or by a state department is required under the provisions of this article to be made upon competitive bids, the successful bid shall be determined as provided in this subsection.

(2) For purposes of this subsection, a successful bid shall be determined and accepted as follows:

(A) From an individual resident vendor who has resided in West Virginia continuously for the four years immediately preceding the date on which the bid is submitted or from a partnership, association, corporation resident vendor, or from a corporation nonresident vendor which has an affiliate or subsidiary which employs a minimum of 100 state residents and which has maintained its headquarters or principal place of business within West Virginia continuously for four years immediately preceding the date on which the bid is submitted, if the vendor’s bid does not exceed the lowest qualified bid from a nonresident vendor by more than two and one-half percent of the latter bid, and if the vendor has made written claim for the preference at the time the bid was submitted: Provided, That for purposes of this paragraph, any partnership, association, or corporation resident vendor of this state which does not meet the requirements of this paragraph solely because of the continuous four-year residence requirement, shall be considered to meet the requirement if at least 80 percent of the ownership interest of the resident vendor is held by another individual, partnership, association, or corporation resident vendor who otherwise meets the requirements of this paragraph, including the continuous four-year residency requirement: Provided, however, That the Purchasing Division shall promulgate rules relating to attribution of ownership among several resident vendors for purposes of determining the 80 percent ownership requirement; or

(B) From a resident vendor, if, for purposes of producing or distributing the motor vehicles or the construction and maintenance equipment and machinery used in highway and other infrastructure projects which are the subject of the vendor’s bid and continuously over the entire term of the contract, on average at least 75 percent of the vendor’s employees are residents of West Virginia who have resided in the state continuously for the two immediately preceding years, and the vendor’s bid does not exceed the lowest qualified bid from a nonresident vendor by more than two and one-half percent of the latter bid, and if the vendor has certified the residency requirements of this paragraph and made written claim for the preference, at the time the bid was submitted; or

(C) From a nonresident vendor, which employs a minimum of 100 state residents or a nonresident vendor which has an affiliate or subsidiary which maintains its headquarters or principal place of business within West Virginia and which employs a minimum of 100 state residents, if, for purposes of producing or distributing the motor vehicles or the construction and maintenance equipment and machinery used in highway and other infrastructure projects which are the subject of the vendor’s bid and continuously over the entire term of the contract, on average at least 75 percent of the vendor’s employees or the vendor’s affiliate’s or subsidiary’s employees are residents of West Virginia who have resided in the state continuously for the two immediately preceding years and the vendor’s bid does not exceed the lowest qualified bid from a nonresident vendor by more than two and one-half percent of the latter bid, and if the vendor has certified the residency requirements of this paragraph and made written claim for the preference, at the time the bid was submitted; or

(D) From a vendor who meets either the requirements of both §5A-3-37(c)(2)(A) and §5A-3-37(c)(2)(B) of this code or §5A-3-37(c)(2)(A) and §5A-3-37(c)(2)(C) of this code, if the bid does not exceed the lowest qualified bid from a nonresident vendor by more than five percent of the latter bid, and if the vendor has certified the residency requirements above and made written claim for the preference at the time the bid was submitted; or

(E) From an individual resident vendor who is a veteran of the United States armed forces, the reserves or the National Guard and has resided in West Virginia continuously for the four years immediately preceding the date on which the bid is submitted, if the vendor’s bid does not exceed the lowest qualified bid from a nonresident vendor by more than three and one-half percent of the latter bid, and if the vendor has made written claim for the preference at the time the bid was submitted; or

(F) From a resident vendor who is a veteran of the United States armed forces, the reserves or the National Guard, if, for purposes of producing or distributing motor vehicles or construction and maintenance equipment and machinery used in highway and other infrastructure projects which are the subject of the vendor’s bid and continuously over the entire term of the contract, on average at least 75 percent of the vendor’s employees are residents of West Virginia who have resided in the state continuously for the two immediately preceding years and the vendor’s bid does not exceed the lowest qualified bid from a nonresident vendor by more than three and one-half percent of the latter bid, and if the vendor has certified the residency requirements of this paragraph and made written claim for the preference, at the time the bid was submitted; or

(G) Notwithstanding any provisions of §5A-3-37(c)(2)(A), §5A-3-37(c)(2)(B), §5A-3-37(c)(2)(C), §5A-3-37(c)(2)(D), §5A-3-37(c)(2)(E), or §5A-3-37(c)(2)(F) of this code to the contrary, if any nonresident vendor that is bidding on the purchase of motor vehicles or construction and maintenance equipment and machinery used in highway and other infrastructure projects by the director or by a state department is also certified as a small-, women-, or minority-owned business pursuant to §5A-3-59, the nonresident vendor shall be provided the same preference made available to any resident vendor under the provisions of this subdivision.

(3) If any of the requirements or provisions set forth in this section jeopardize the receipt of federal funds, then the requirement or provisions are void and of no force and effect for that specific project.

(4) The Purchasing Division shall promulgate any rules necessary to: (A) Determine that vendors have met the residence requirements described in this section; (B) establish the procedure for vendors to certify the residency requirements at the time of submitting their bids; (C) establish a procedure to audit bids which make a claim for preference permitted by this section and to reject noncomplying bids; and (D) otherwise accomplish the objectives of this subsection.

(d) If the Purchasing Division determines under any audit procedure that a vendor who received a preference under this section fails to continue to meet the requirements for the preference at any time during the term of the contract for which the preference was received the Purchasing Division may: (1) Reject the vendor’s bid; or (2) assess a penalty against the vendor of not more than five percent of the vendor’s bid on the contract.

(e) Political subdivisions of the state including county boards of education may grant the same preferences to any vendor of this state who has made a written claim for the preference at the time a bid is submitted, but for the purposes of this subsection, in determining the lowest bid, any political subdivision shall exclude from the bid the amount of business occupation taxes which must be paid by a resident vendor to any municipality within the county comprising or located within the political subdivision as a result of being awarded the contract which is the object of the bid; in the case of a bid received by a municipality, the municipality shall exclude only the business and occupation taxes as will be paid to the municipality: Provided, That prior to soliciting any competitive bids, any political subdivision may, by majority vote of all its members in a public meeting where all the votes are recorded, elect not to exclude from the bid the amount of business and occupation taxes as provided in this subsection.

§5A-3-37. Reciprocal preference; preference for resident vendors for certain contracts.