What We Buy & How We Buy It

Quick links:

What we buy

Goods are materials, supplies, equipment, spare parts, fuel, chemicals, and rolling stock. Goods are purchased using quotes or formal sealed bids through an Invitation for Bids (IFB). The contract is awarded to the lowest price bidder that has completed all of the forms correctly.

Non-Construction Services include repair of computers, copy machines, automobiles, machinery and other equipment; maintenance of property; and waste disposal services. Non-Construction Services are purchased using quotes or formal sealed bids through an Invitation for Bids. The contract is awarded based on the lowest quote or to the lowest responsive, responsible bidder.

Construction includes alteration, repair, remodeling, rehabilitation, improvement, extension, conversion (including painting, electrical work, plumbing, ventilation work, etc.), or demolition of property such as buildings, structures, plants, plumping stations, sewers, tunnels, highways and streets, and parking lots. Construction services are purchased using quotes or formal sealed bids through an IFB. The contract is awarded based on the lowest quote or to the lowest responsive, responsible bidder.

Professional and Technical Services include architectural and engineering services, consultation, analysis, evaluation, planning, surveying and mapping, tests, evaluations, comprehensive planning, program management, conceptual designs, soils engineering, drawing reviews, preparation of operation and maintenance manuals, and other related services. Selection of the vendor is through a competitive proposal process called Request for Proposals (RFP).

See a list of council purchases in the second quarter of 2018. The Council anticipates publishing contracting opportunity forecasts in early 2019.

How we buy it

Quotes — The quotes process requires collecting price quotes from three or more vendors. The process is used in lower dollar value purchases under $100,000. The contract is awarded based on the lowest quote or to the lowest responsive, responsible bidder.

Invitation for Bids — The bid process is a more formal process which requires an advertisement, and collection of bids from all interested vendors. State laws require the use of a formal IFB for all goods and most non-professional services for all procurements valued at greater than $100,000.

Request for Proposals (RFP) — The RFP process requires the collection of proposals from interested vendors. The proposals are scored based on established evaluation criteria. Price is only one of several evaluation criteria. The contract is awarded to the proposer whose proposal is most advantageous to the Council based upon cost and other factors. A formal advertisement is required for all services that are expected to cost more than $100,000.

MCUB Select

The Metropolitan Council has implemented a sheltered market solicitation process called MCUB Select. The MCUB Select Program is intended to reduce barriers and increase utilization of MCUB firms that do business with the Council.

MCUB Select is a sheltered market procurement program that will apply when at least three MCUB firms are eligible, available and capable of performing the scope of work identified within the solicitation. Only MCUB firms are eligible to participate in the MCUB Select program. Firms eligible to participate in the Council’s MCUB Select program must, at the time of solicitation must qualify as an MCUB.

Procurements eligible for MCUB Select must not have any federal funding nor subcontracting opportunities and must have work scopes that can be performed by eligible MCUB firms.

Firms participating in the MCUB Select Program are considered eligible until awarded and successfully completed projects totaling $200,000 in contract value or three individual projects, whichever comes first.