procurement; information disclosure; bidders
State of Arizona
House of Representatives
First Regular Session
HOUSE BILL 2051
amending section 41-2533, Arizona Revised Statutes; relating to the procurement code.
(TEXT OF BILL BEGINS ON NEXT PAGE)
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:
Section 1. Section 41-2533, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:
41-2533. Competitive sealed bidding
A. Contracts shall be awarded by competitive sealed bidding except as otherwise provided in section 41-2532.
B. An invitation for bids shall be issued and shall include a purchase description and all contractual terms and conditions applicable to the procurement. The director shall provide a question and answer period for bidders and interested parties outside of the procurement process to submit written questions and for the director to provide written responses to those questions. The director shall provide in writing all questions raised and answers provided, including those questions arising during site visits and pre-bid conferences, to all bidders and interested parties outside of the procurement process.
C. Adequate public notice of the invitation for bids shall be given a reasonable time before the date set forth in the invitation for the opening of bids, in accordance with rules adopted by the director. The notice may include publication one or more times in a newspaper of general circulation a reasonable time before bid opening. If the invitation for bids is for the procurement of services other than those described in sections 41-2513, 41-2578, 41-2579 and 41-2581, the notice shall include publication in a single newspaper or in multiple newspapers within this state. The publication shall be not less than two weeks before bid opening and shall be circulated within the affected governmental jurisdiction. The notice may also be posted at a designated site on the a worldwide public network of interconnected computers internet.
D. Bids shall be opened publicly at the time and place designated in the invitation for bids. The amount of each bid, and such other relevant information as may be specified by rule, together with the name of each bidder shall be recorded. This record shall be open to public inspection at the bid opening in a manner prescribed by rule. The bids shall not be open for public inspection until after a contract is awarded. To the extent the bidder designates and the state concurs, trade secrets or other proprietary data contained in the bid documents shall remain confidential in accordance with rules adopted by the director.
E. Bids shall be unconditionally accepted without alteration or correction, except as authorized in this chapter. Bids shall be evaluated based on the requirements set forth in the invitation for bids, including criteria to determine acceptability such as inspection, testing, quality, workmanship, delivery and suitability for a particular purpose, as prescribed in rules adopted by the director. Evaluation criteria shall not be used for construction and no criteria may be used in bid evaluation that are not set forth in the invitation for bids.
F. The correction or withdrawal of erroneous bids before or after bid opening, based on bid mistakes, may be permitted allowed in accordance with rules adopted by the director. After bid opening, no corrections in bid prices or other provisions of bids prejudicial to the interest of this state or fair competition shall be permitted allowed. Except as otherwise provided by rule, all decisions to permit allow the correction or withdrawal of bids, or to cancel awards or contracts based on bid mistakes, shall be supported by a written determination made by the director.
G. The contract shall be awarded to the lowest responsible and responsive bidder whose bid conforms in all material respects to the requirements and criteria set forth in the invitation for bids. The amount of any applicable transaction privilege or use tax of a political subdivision of this state is not a factor in determining the lowest bidder. If all bids for a construction project exceed available monies as certified by the appropriate fiscal officer, and the low responsive and responsible bid does not exceed such monies by more than five per cent percent, the director may in situations in which time or economic considerations preclude resolicitation of work of a reduced scope negotiate an adjustment of the bid price, including changes in the bid requirements, with the low responsive and responsible bidder, to bring the bid within the amount of available monies.
H. The multistep sealed bidding method may be used if it is not practicable to initially prepare a definitive purchase description that is suitable to permit allow an award based on competitive sealed bidding. An invitation for bids may be issued requesting the submission of technical offers to be followed by an invitation for bids limited to those bidders whose offers are determined to be technically acceptable under the criteria set forth in the first solicitation, except that the multistep sealed bidding method may not be used for construction contracts.
I. If the price of a recycled paper product that conforms to specifications is within five per cent percent of a low bid product that is not recycled and the recycled product bidder is otherwise the lowest responsible and responsive bidder, the award shall be made to the bidder offering the recycled product. The director may adopt rules requiring a five per cent percent preference for other products made from recycled materials.