CHAPTER 5A. DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION.

§5A-3-10. Competitive bids; publication of solicitations for sealed bids; purchase of products of nonprofit workshops; employee to assist in dealings with nonprofit workshops; continuing procurements over $1 million.

(a) A purchase of and contract for commodities, printing, and services shall be based on competitive bids, except when another method of procurement is determined to be in the best interest of the State.

(b) The director shall solicit, on behalf of spending units, sealed bids for the purchase of commodities and printing which is estimated to exceed $25,000. The director may delegate the procurement of commodities, services, or printing estimated to be $25,000 or less to the spending unit. The director may set a higher or lower delegated procurement limit for a particular spending unit if the director determines that such action would be in the best interest of the spending unit and the State. In no event may the director authorize more than $100,000 of delegated procurement authority to a spending unit.

(c) Spending units shall not make an individual purchase in excess of the delegated procurement limit established in subsection (b) of this section, issue a series of requisitions for the same or similar commodity or service or divide or plan procurements with the intention to circumvent the delegated procurement limit established in subsection (b), or otherwise avoid the use of sealed bids. Any spending unit that discovers it has awarded multiple contracts for the same or similar commodity or service to an individual vendor over any 12-month period shall file copies of all contracts awarded or orders placed for the commodity, service, or printing in question within the 12 preceding months with the director upon exceeding the delegated limit, along with a statement explaining how either the multiple contract awards or orders do not circumvent the delegated procurement limit, or how the contracts or orders were not intended to circumvent the delegated limit. If the spending unit does not report to the director within a reasonable period, the director shall contact the spending unit to request such statement and may suspend the purchasing authority of the spending unit until the spending unit complies with the reporting requirement of this subsection, as determined appropriate. The director may conduct a review of any spending unit to ensure compliance with this subsection. Following a review, in consultation with the relevant spending unit, the director shall complete a report summarizing his or her findings and forward the report to the spending unit. In addition, the director shall report to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance on January 1 and July 1 of each year the spending units which have reported under this subsection and the findings of the director.

(d) The director may permit bids by electronic transmission to be accepted in lieu of sealed bids.

(e) Bids shall be solicited by public notice. The notice may be published by any advertising medium the director considers advisable. The director may also solicit sealed bids by sending requests by mail or electronic transmission to prospective vendors.

(f) (1) The director may, without competitive bidding, purchase commodities and services produced and offered for sale by nonprofit workshops, as defined in §5A-1-1 of this code, which are located in this state: Provided, That the commodities and services shall be of a fair market price and of like quality comparable to other commodities and services otherwise available as determined by the director.

(2) To encourage contracts for commodities and services with nonprofit workshops, the director shall employ a person whose responsibilities in addition to other duties are to identify all commodities and services available for purchase from nonprofit workshops, to evaluate the need of the state for commodities and services to coordinate the various nonprofit workshops in their production efforts, and to make available to the workshops information about available opportunities within state government for purchase of commodities or services which might be produced and sold by such workshops. Funds to employ such a person shall be included annually in the budget.

(g) For all commodities and services in an amount exceeding $1 million, if the procurement of the commodity or service is continuing in nature, 12 months prior to the expiration of the contract or final renewal option, whichever is later, the spending unit shall coordinate with the Purchasing Division on a new procurement for such commodity or service under the requirements of this article. This procurement shall be awarded or terminated no later than 180 days after the procurement specifications have been finally approved by the Purchasing Division.

§5A-3-10. Competitive bids; publication of solicitations for sealed bids; purchase of products of nonprofit workshops; employee to assist in dealings with nonprofit workshops; continuing procurements over $1 million.