2 Contents Subpart 14.1 -- Use of Sealed Bidding Subpart Submission of BidsSubpart Opening of Bids and Award of ContractSubpart Two-Step Sealed Bidding
3 Subpart 14.1 -- Use of Sealed Bidding Sealed bidding is a method of contracting that employs competitive bids, public opening of bids, and awards. The following steps are involved:Preparation of invitations for bidsPublicizing the invitation for bids.Submission of bids.Evaluation of bids. Bids shall be evaluated without discussions.Contract award.Contracting officers shall solicit sealed bids if –Time permits the solicitation, submission, and evaluation of sealed bids;The award will be made on the basis of price and other price-related factors;It is not necessary to conduct discussions with the responding offerors about their bids; andThere is a reasonable expectation of receiving more than one sealed bid
4 Subpart 14.2 -- Solicitation of Bids Uniform contract format or Simplified format may be usedMust check (x) block for IFB on Offer and AwardMust include description or specifications for product/service solicited.Clauses and Provisions – insert as prescribed, False Statements in Bids, Submission of Bids, Explanation to Prospective Bidders, Late Submissions, Modifications, and Withdrawals of Bids, Contract Award - Sealed Bidding or , Contract Award -- Sealed Bidding -- Construction,
5 Subpart 14.2 -- Solicitation of Bids Clauses and Provisions (Con’t.), Preparation of Bids or , Preparation of Bids -- Construction, Telegraphic Bids, Place of Performance -- Sealed Bidding, Period for Acceptance of Bids, Evaluation of Bids for Multiple Awards,, Facsimile Bids, Submission of Offers in the English Language, Submission of Offers in U.S. Currency, Audit and Records -- Sealed Bidding,, Price Related Factors
6 Subpart 14.2 -- Solicitation of Bids Rules for soliciting bidsBid time – Reasonable time consistent with needs of the Government – typically 30 days if synopsizing in FBO (>25K)Announcement / PublicizingUsing the FBOPosting in public placeTrade journals/publicationsPre-solicitation notice leading to a bidders list.Method for SolicitationDirect mailCopy available for reproduction or distributionElectronic commerceMeans of responseWritten bid in sealed envelope most commonFax or telegraphic if allowed by CO
7 Subpart 14.2 -- Solicitation of Bids Pre-Bid Meeting may be conducted to clarify solicitation requirementsNot an opportunity to prop-up a flawed solicitationAmendments to solicitation – SF30May need to extend bid due date to allow time to incorporate information in amendmentSolicitation may be cancelled before bid openingAnnounce in FBOBids received shall be returned unopenedProspective bidders should be given the right to bid on any re-solicitationCommunications with biddersAny information provided to one bidder must be provided to all – preferably at the same time.Prohibition
8 Subpart 14.3 -- Submission of Bids Means of deliveryPostal / Commercial deliveryHand deliveredElectronic submittal only if permitted by CO (e.g., fax, telephone, telegraph.Bids must be timelyMust arrive on or before the time specified at the address or location identified in the solicitation documents.Time and date stamped by Government
9 Subpart 14.3 -- Submission of Bids Bids must be responsiveMust comply in all material respects with the invitation for bidsBids should be filled out, executed, and submitted in accordance with the instructions in the invitationAcknowledgement of amendmentsBid bond (if required)All attachments or supporting documentation includedMust be properly submitted, fax and telegraphic bids need not be accepted if not specified in the solicitationModification or withdrawal of bidsPermitted at any time up to the bid due (“closing”) date/timeIf time not specified then bids close at 4:30pm on the prescribed date
10 Subpart 14.3 -- Submission of Bids Late Bids, Modifications and withdrawalsHeld unopened until after awardGovernment must notify bidders of late bidBid bond is returned.CO may choose to accept a late bid ifDoing so does not delay the awardIf it was transmitted through an electronic commerce method authorized by the IFB, it was received at the initial point of entry to the Government infrastructure not later than 5:00 p.m. one working day prior to the date specified for receipt of bids;There is acceptable evidence to establish that it was received at the Government installation designated for receipt of bids and was under the Government’s control prior to the time set for receipt of bids
11 Subpart 14.4 -- Opening of Bids and Award of Contract Receipt of proposalsMust be secured prior to bid opening – held in secure file cabinet, safe, or Bid BoxProcedure for inadvertently opened proposalsProcedure to open bids if identifying information not on exterior of bid package.Bid opening is a public eventBids opened by the Bid Opening OfficerBid opening is publicly announced (usually in the solicitation or pre-solicitation notice on FBO)
12 Subpart 14.4 -- Opening of Bids and Award of Contract Opening ProcessOpening official announcement (greeting, the time is ___, Solicitation number/purpose, bidding is now closed, introductions)Usually assisted by abstractorEach bid is numbered and opened in turnEach bid is examined for responsiveness (e.g., were amendments acknowledged, bid bond present, etc.)Each bid is read aloud and recorded by the abstractorGovernment estimate is opened, read aloud, and recordedOpening official announces that the bid opening is complete. No statement need be made concerning the winner or apparent winner at this time.Bids speak for themselvesBids are subject to review prior to awardOpening official signs the abstract and a copy is available for public inspection.
13 Subpart 14.4 -- Opening of Bids and Award of Contract Rejection of bidsIndividualdoes not conform to the applicable specificationsfails to conform to the delivery scheduleconditioned (all-or-none is OK) that affects price, quality or delivery.unreasonable as to price (in total or for an individual line item)materially unbalancedbidder deemed not responsible or debarredbid security not provide or improperAllGovernment requirement no longer existsAll bids exceed the Government estimate (i.e., are not reasonable)Specifications revised or inadequateNo responsive bid from a responsible bidderCollusion among biddersLess expensive if performed by Government (A-76)In the interest of the Government
14 Subpart 14.4 -- Opening of Bids and Award of Contract Waiver of minor informalities by COMatter of form rather than substanceDoes not prejudice other bidderExamples: failed to acknowledge amendment, did not sign bid, etc.Mistakes in bids – Before awardObvious clerical errors – correct through verificationCannot be used to cure non-responsive bidsCorrection may be initiated by bidder after opening but subject to significant restrictions – especially if it would displace lower bidder.Agency may prohibit low bidder from withdrawing (low) bid but may allow bidder to correct.Bidders notified of mistakes and asked to correct through ‘verification of bid’ processPrice is exceptionally low compared to other bidders and Government estimateOther information that the CO believes indicates an error in the bid.
15 Subpart 14.4 -- Opening of Bids and Award of Contract Mistakes in Bids – After AwardGoverned by FAR 33.2 (Disputes and Appeals)Decision documented via CO’s Final DecisionWork continues without interruption while issue is resolvedActions include rescission or reforming toEliminate item(s) involvedAdjust the contract price – but may not displace next low bidderClear and convincing Evidence that a mistake in bid was made. In addition, it must be clear that the mistake was—Mutual, orIf unilaterally made by the contractor, so apparent as to have charged the contracting officer with notice of the probability of the mistake.
16 Subpart 14.4 -- Opening of Bids and Award of Contract Evaluation of bidsResponsive to the solicitationCost and cost related factorsSingle vs. multiple awardsPrompt payment discountsScheduleAdditive itemsFair and reasonable priceBalanced pricingDetermination of bidder responsibilityEqual low bids resolved by with preference to small businessAward made using the appropriate document (SF 1447, SF 33 SF26, SF 1442, OF 347) Note: the bid constitutes an offer which may be accepted by the Government to form a binding contract.Notice of AwardFBOTo bidder
17 • Subpart 14.5 -- Two-Step Sealed Bidding Step OneRequest for, submission, evaluation, and (if necessary) discussion of a technical proposalResolves conformity to the technical requirements and any questions concerning the specificationsStep TwoSealed bids as per the above