A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT TO CLARIFY THE STATUTES RELATED TO THE USE OF PREQUALIFICATION IN PUBLIC CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTING, AS STUDIED BY THE JOINT PURCHASE AND CONTRACT STUDY COMMITTEE.
Section 1 of the bill amends GS 143-135.8 to define prequalification and to clarify the circumstances under which units of government may prequalify contractors for purposes of bidding on public construction or repair contracts. New subsection (a) prohibits the use of prequalification except under specific circumstances enumerated in new subsection (b) as follows: (1) the unit is bidding the project under the separate-prime, multi-prime, or dual bidding methods and (2) the governing board has adopted an objective prequalification policy. New subsection (c) requires the prequalification policy to be uniform, consistent, and transparent; allow all bidders who meet the prequalification criteria to be prequalified; clearly state the prequalification criteria and assessment process; establish a protest process for bidders denied prequalification; and outline a process for communicating the basis for denial of prequalification to a bidder. New subsection (d) clarifies that a bid submitted by a bidder denied prequalification shall be deemed nonresponsive. New subsection (e) prohibits the use of prequalification in selecting architects, engineers, or surveyors under Article 3D of Chapter 143, design-builders under GS 143-128.1A, preliminary designers on a design-build bridging project under GS 143-128.1B, a public-private partnership developer under GS 143-128.1C, or a construction manager at-risk under GS 143-128.1. New subsection (f) defines prequalification.
Section 2 of the bill amends GS 143-128.1 to require construction managers at-risk to use prequalify first-tier subcontractors in accordance with the new prequalification provisions; requires a unit of government to compare the cost and benefit of using construction management at-risk for a particular project in lieu of traditional construction delivery methods and determine that construction management at-risk is in the best interest of the project.
Section 3 of the bill recodifies the reporting requirements related to using alternative construction delivery methods under GS 143-64.31(b),(c), and (d) as GS 143-133.1(a), (b), and (c), which is detailed in Section 5 of the bill.
Section 4 of the bill amends GS 143-64.31 by adding a new subsection (f) prohibiting the solicitation, submission, or consideration of work product or design, or costs or fees other than unit price, when procuring professional services subject to this statute (architects, engineers, surveyors, and alternative construction delivery method services). Examples of prior work may be solicited, submitted, and considered.
Effective October 1, 2014, and applies to all contracts awarded on or after that date.
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