The intent of this procedure is to provide bidders with a process to formally object to a contract award. Before submitting a formal protest, bidders are encouraged to discuss any issues with the Senior Contract Services Officer and Project Manager on the contract. Contact information is provided on the Notice of Intent to Award.
Bidder Protest Procedures:
Any bidder who is deemed non-responsive or who is otherwise not awarded a contract may protest the contract award to another bidder, under the following conditions:
- A bidder may submit a protest if they believe that:
- The rating factors and/or evaluation criteria put them at an unjust disadvantage;
- The County erred in its conclusion that the bidder’s proposal was non-responsive or failed to follow procedures set forth in the project specifications and therefore was unfairly disqualified; or
- The County failed to follow laws, statutes, written policy and/or procedures.
- Bidders must submit the protest via email to the Senior Contract Services Officer and Project Manager on the contract within five (5) working days after the County issues the Notice of Intent to Award. Protests received after the five (5) working day deadline will not be considered. See County of Sacramento Standard Construction Specifications section 3-3.01.
- The protest must reference the contract number and project name.
- The protest must detail the basis for the protest with reference, as applicable, to the local, state or federal statutes, codes, and/or regulations, the County of Sacramento Standard Construction Specifications, the Special Provisions for the contract, and any other relevant documentation in support of the protest.
Bidders have an obligation to adhere to review timeframes and to submit appropriate documentation to support their concerns.
Throughout the review process, the County has no obligation to delay or otherwise postpone an award of a contract based on a bidder’s protest.
Protest Review Guidelines:
Protest review shall be completed in a reasonable time, and a determination shall be provided in writing to the bidder. A review may be granted if:
- The protest is timely submitted in writing;
- The bidder submitting the protest has responded to the contract in question;
- The protest alleges that the bidder submitted the lowest, responsive bid from a responsible bidder, and the bid was erroneously disqualified; and
- The protest itemizes in appropriate detail and with factual reasons, the grounds for protest.
Protest Review and Conclusion:
Unless local, state or federal statutes or regulations otherwise provide, the review of protests will be conducted by appropriate County staff in coordination with County Counsel.
For CUPCCAA contracts: written response will be provided by the director of the department that bid the project, their designee, or County Counsel. There is no administrative appeal above the director, as the director is the awarding authority.
For formally bid contracts and Job Order Contracts: written response will be provided by the director of the department that bid the project, their designee, or County Counsel. Unless the protest is thereafter withdrawn in writing, recommendation for award of the contract will be scheduled on the public agenda of the governing board of the agency that bid the project. The protesting party may then provide both written and verbal communication to the governing board.