The following is an excerpt from the Town's Financial Policies. Section 17 d. outlines the Town's policy for bids and contracts:
17. Procurement - No order shall be placed by any Town employee, contractor or representative that in any way encumbers or obligates the Town until after that person has received an approved purchase order. The Town will not be held responsible for any order placed by any employee, contractor or representative if the vendor has not received an approved purchase order before delivery of services or goods. The following policies will provide guidelines for all procurement:
a. Local Preference - When all other factors are the same, the Town encourages staff to purchase locally provided the cost is within 10% of other bids on items up to $25,000. Factors may include quality of product, quality of service, delivery, maintenance, and other issues that may be relevant.
b. Recycle - The Town encourages recycling and environmental concerns. When all other factors are the same, the Town encourages staff to purchase recycled products provided the cost is within 10% of other bids on items up to $25,000.
c. Purchase Order Approvals - Requests for purchase orders will be approved by Staff, Department Directors and the Finance Director or Manager, based on the amount.
d. Bids and Contracts -The Town recognizes the need to use outside sources for providing Professional Services (consultants), for constructing Capital Projects (vendors & contractors) and for providing services for day-to-day operations and maintenance. The Town requires staff to solicit bids for any purchase of goods over $100K or services over $50K; however, Council may waive the bid requirement for purchases of services less than $100K. Selection of vendors, contractors or consultants may be based on past experience with the Town, knowledge of the Town and region, philosophy of the nature of the job, availability of time, quality of product, quality of service and material, maintenance, warranties, price, and such other criteria as deemed appropriate for a particular public project. Once a vendor has been chosen, the Town Council shall approve the contract by resolution.
When bids are required, an “invitation for bids” shall be published in a local newspaper within 45 days and not less than 15 days from the bid deadline. The request for the invitation for bids shall include an adequate description of the work to be completed, any specifics which may be required of the vendor, all contractual terms, and conditions applicable to the public project. 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 rules, together with the name of each bidder, shall be entered on a record and open to public inspection. After the time of the award, all bids and documents shall be open to public inspection. The Town shall not be obligated to select the lowest bidder, but shall select based on the established criteria in the invitation to bid.
f. Exceptions - Minor purchases may be made through Petty Cash or Town credit cards for items approved in the budget. The cost of processing purchase orders, invoices and checks for payments make it practical that small purchases be exceptions to the procurement code.
g. Emergencies - In the event of natural disasters, accidents or other emergencies where the health, safety or welfare of the community is at risk the procurement requirements may be waived by the Manager. The staff will notify the Council of any emergency immediately identifying the emergency and any purchase that may be required.