The City of Pawtucket welcomes the opportunity to do business with qualified and responsible vendors. The purpose of this guide is to aquaint you, the vendor, with an overview of the procurement policies and procedures of the City of Pawtucket. It is intended as a general guide only, and as such, may not answer all questions.
The information contained herein may be updated from time to time, at the city's discretion. Should there be a conflict between this version and Federal, State, or City laws, policies or procedures, then the applicable Federal, State, or City laws, policies or procedures will prevail.
The Purchasing Division's vendor listing is comprised of vendors who have previously provided the City with goods and services. Due to budgetary restrictions, staffing levels and time constraints, it is highly impractical to solicit quotations from each interested vendor in each product or service category, for each item. However, if a local vendor cannot supply a particular item or service, outside requests for quotations are solicited, and a purchase initiated with the vendor who provided the most competitive pricing, favorable delivery schedule and terms, and best product or service guarantees.
The City does not have a vendor application at this time. If you are a new vendor interested in doing business with the City, please send a letter of introduction on Company stationary, along with several business cards and a "product line" sheet, if available, to the attention of the Purchasing Agent. It is the vendor's responsibility to check with the Purchasing Division for current solicitations. Women and "minority-owned" businesses are encouraged to bid with the City.
Non-resident vendors are advised that they must comply with the provisions of Rhode Island General Law (RIGL) 44-1-6, Non-Resident Contractors. Briefly stated, this law mandates that a municipality doing business with a non-resident contractor shall withhold payment in the amount of three (3) percent of the contract price until thirty (30) days after the contractor has completed the contract, and has requested the RI State Tax Administrator, in writing, to audit his/her records for the project. A receipted copy of the request is to be furnished to the municipality.
The Tax Administrator shall, within thirty (30) days after receipt of the request, furnish to the non-resident contractor and to the municipality either a certificate of no tax due, or a certificate of sales and use tax or income tax withheld, or both, due from the non-resident contractor.
An authorized purchase order number is required PRIOR TO the provision of any goods or services. The only exception to this rule is a weekend or after-hours emergency, when a purchase order number cannot be readily obtained from Purchasing. In these rare instances, only a City official of supervisory capacity or higher is authorized to initiate a purchase of goods or services without a purchase order. Vendors who do not abide by this policy cannot be assured payment, and may also be prohibited from doing further business with the City.
The Purchasing Division considers sales representatives to be a valuable resource for obtaining specifications and information on product developmant and advancements, especially to City representatives out in the field who actually generate requisition requests for particular products; however, it is strongly recommended that Purchasing be notified of any sales calls to the field; prior to the visit, and that any materials left with a field representative, also be left with the Purchasing Division office.
The City of Pawtucket is exempt from federal, state, and local taxes. A sales tax exemption certificate will be furnished upon request.
Sealed bids are publicly opened at 4:00 p.m., in City Council chambers, 3rd floor, City Hall, immediately preceding scheduled Purchasing Board meetings.
Unless otherwise stated in the specifications for an "Invitation to Bid," "Request for Proposals," or an informal "Request for Quotations," product brand names, manufacturers, makes, models, trade names, or vendor catalog identification numbers are used solely for the purpose of establishing materials grade or quality in specifications.
There are occasions when the City's specifications may be "brand or manufacturer specific." These instances are rare, but may be required for operational continuity and maximum economy, most notably in the purchase of fleet vehicles for Police, Fire, and Public Works. If the City does not wish to rule out other competitors' makes or brands, the phrase "or equal," is used.
A vendor's bid is considered a firm offer to enter into a contract with the City. However, if a vendor discovers an honest and financially significant mistake in the bid, which can be substantiated with documentary evidence, a vendor must notify the Purchasing Agent, in writing, within three (3) days of the bid opening, and before an award is made.
During the typical life cycle of a formal written bid prior to opening, changes may take place affecting the terms and conditions, or the specifications of the bid. In these instances, a written addendum will be mailed to all vendors who have officially received bid documents. These changes become an integral part of the bid and must be signed and returned with the bid documents.
All vendors who respond to either a formal "sealed bid," or a Request for Proposals (RFP), must complete the Anti-Kickback Acknowledgment form contained in the bid/proposal packet.
The City strives for prompt "30 days or less" payment of properly submitted invoices. Invoice originals should be sent to Accounting Division, Pawtucket City Hall, and a copy to the ordering Department.
Invoices must include:
The City solicits goods and services through various forms and levels:
-Small Purchases (Informals)-Usually involves purchases under $5,000.
These solicitations are not publicly advertised.
-Sealed Bids (Formals)- Generally, competitive sealed bids are solicited for
goods or services expected to exceed $5,000.00, or
construction projects over $10,000, unless it is in
the City's best interests to do otherwise, as
allowed by Charter and State Purchasing laws.
Formal bids are solicited by an Invitation to Bid as advertised in one of two local newspapers.
Bid results are reviewed by the requesting Department, after which, recommendation to award to a particular vendor is made to the Purchasing Board. The City of Pawtucket reserves the right to accept or reject any or all bids, and to waive any informalities in bids, if it is deemed in the best interests of the City to do so.
A "Request for Proposals," (RFP) process is used for the procurement of professional services that, because of their nature or use, are highly specialized, complex, or technical, and do not lend themselves to a "bid" format. RFP"s are advertised in one of two local newspapers.
Submitted proposals will be reviewed, evaluated, and ranked by the requesting Department. Negotiations are then held with the highest ranked offeror, who submitted a proposal determined to be particularly beneficial to the City, after which, recommendation to award is made to the Purchasing Board. If negotiations are unsuccessful with the highest ranked offeror, negotiations are terminated, and negotiations with the second highest ranked offeror may be conducted, and so on.
The City of Pawtucket reserves the right to accept or reject any or all proposals, and to waive any informalities in proposals, if it is deemed in the best interests of the City to do so. Contract award will be made to the vendor whose proposal was not only the lowest responsive and responsible submittal, but also the most advantageous to the City.
A contract or award may be made for a supply, service or construction item without competitive bidding when the Purchasing Director determines that there is only one source for the required supply, service or construction item.
The Purchasing Director may make or authorize others to make "emergency" procurements when there exists a threat to public health, welfare, or safety, or where the procurement will be in the best interests of the City. All emergency procurements shall be made with such competition, if any, as is practicable under the circumstances.
- Don Grebien
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