Ohio Revised Code Governs Construction Procurement
- Kent State University Office of the University Architect (OUA) follows state procurement guidelines and requirements for bidding publicly-funded construction work. Reference the Web Sites of Agencies that Regulate the University's Design and Construction Projects.
- Projects with a total cost under $200,000 are not required to be publicly advertised or bid.
For projects expected to cost less than $100,000, OUA may invite any contractor to provide a quote and may award the work to any contractor who has provided a quote based on the scope of work, after evaluation of the quote. Multiple quotes are not required.
For projects expected to cost over $100,000 but less than $200,000, OUA will send an Invitation to Bid to three contractors to provide quotes.
This non-advertised work is referred to contractors who are judged to have the capability to do the work. These are often contractors who have bid on other projects and shown their bids to be competitively priced, who are self directed, who understand and comply with KSU procedures, and/or who provide quality, problem-free work. Minority participation is encouraged.
- All construction projects with a total cost of over $200,000 are required to be publicly advertised and bid.
Advertisements are placed in a newspaper for three (3) consecutive weeks with bids due eight (8) days after the last ad (22 days elapsed).
Advertisements are also placed on the OUA website at: http://www.kent.edu/universityarchitect/contractors/notice-to-bidders.cfm.
Bid documents are available for review at OUA for no cost and also at approximately 30 plan rooms throughout Ohio. Seven of these plan rooms are geared toward minority contractors. The list of these plan room locations is posted on the OUA web site at: http://www.kent.edu/universityarchitect/projects/upload/locationstoviewcontractdocuments.pdf.
OUA does not maintain a list of contractors who will be bidding on the project. Instead, ARC / eBlueprint manages the list of bidders on these projects. A list of known plan holders is available for each project for subcontractors to contact and offer to provide a quote to a prime contractor. This list can be found on the ARC / eBlueprint website at: http://www.eblueprint.com/V2/Print/Project/PublicProjectList.aspx. Select the specific project and then the bidder’s list near the top of the project.
Pre-Bid Meetings are held for most projects. The advertisement will indicate the date, time, and location of the meeting. Meetings are not mandatory for bidders, but do provide valuable information about the details of the project, access to associates and project managers, and site visits, all of which may give you a ‘leg up’ on the competition.
OUA’s Bid Documents follow the format of the State of Ohio Standard Requirements for Public Facility Construction. The State versions of these documents are available for viewing on the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission’s website at: http://ofcc.ohio.gov/Documents.aspx. New bidders may be particularly interested in studying the “Instructions To Bidders” documents, which describe the Bid Bond, Power of Attorney, and other documents that are required to be included with the bid, or if a bid is deemed the “Apparent Low Bid”, shortly after the bid date. This section will also help bidders understand how bids are evaluated and awarded.
- In all bid situations, OUA maintains an overall EDGE goal of 5% participation of the total project. In 2011, OUA's EDGE participation was approximately 11%. Many prime contractors are looking for firms to fulfill their EDGE goal requirement and so EDGE certified firms offering competitive pricing and quality work are sought after.
- All projects over $100,000 are managed through an online software system referred to as OAKS-CI. All business processes, such as contracts, pay applications, change orders and submittals are documented and processed electronically. Prime contractors and some subcontractors will be required to use this software for these projects. OUA currently provides some introductory training and other resources to help contractors and consultants become familiar with the OAKS software and procedures.
- Contract awards vary depending on funding sources and other issues, but generally take from between 14 to 75 days. One of the other issues depends on the contractor's ability to expedite the paperwork required by procurement regulations.
- Contractor payments are generally issued within 30 to 60 days of approval of the contractor’s application for payment. Partial or progress payments are a standard procedure, usually scheduled on a monthly basis.