Bid Policy & Procedures

Questions: Whom to Call & How to Get Answers


The Purchasing Division will provide all necessary information/clarification to bid or proposal specifications issued by them. The Purchasing Division is available to answer questions during normal business hours.

Questions or clarifications to specifications will be made in writing to the Purchasing Division Ten (10) calendar days prior to the date the bid or proposal is due. There will be times when the questions will be of such nature as to require research time, however this will not delay the opening.

Bidders/proponents are responsible for reporting any errors in the specifications to the Purchasing Division, 630 East Hopkins
San Marcos, TX 78666

How to Obtain Specifications


To obtain a copy of a bid or proposal package, log onto the online procurement website.

Notices are posted on a bid board located in the lobby of the Municipal Court Building, our local newspaper, the Texas Marketplace electronic bulletin board, and Texas Bid System.

Bidders List


Vendors who wish to be placed on the City's bidders list must register online.

Bidders Responsibilities


It is the responsibility of the bidder/proponent to read all documents contained in the specifications carefully, and follow the directions in the packet. Bidders/proponents are responsible for the timely submission of their bid/proposal.

Bidders/proponents are responsible for reporting any errors or omissions, in writing, to the Purchasing Division.

Contents of Bid or Proposal Document


Each packet contains:
  • Bid/Proposal forms
  • Instructions to bidders/proponents
  • The name and number of the bid or proposal
  • Technical specifications
  • Time and date on which the bid or proposal is due

Bidding Requirements


The City is required, under Local Government Code, to obtain public bids for goods and services that meet or exceed predetermined cost thresholds. A formal, publicly advertised bid is required when the acquisition of goods or services can reasonably be anticipated to meet or exceed $50,000. Formal bids may also be required for lessor amounts at the discretion of the Purchasing Manager.

The City is further required to obtain written quotes for any product and material purchases in excess of $3,000.

Pre-Bid Conferences


Pre-bid conferences are scheduled when a particular good or service is complex or technical as to need visual clarification. If the pre-bid conference is mandatory and the vendor fails to attend, and sign in, that vendor will not be allowed to participate in the bid. If they submit a bid, it will be returned unopened with the explanation that they failed to attend the required pre-bid conference. In no case will this requirement be waived.

Receipt & Opening of Bids


The time and date of all public openings is stated in the letter to the prospective bidder, on the Bid Form, and is published in the City's local newspaper. All bids will be sealed and distinctly marked with the bid name and number and the bid opening date and time. All sealed bids will be received in the Office of the Purchasing Manager, 630 E Hopkins, San Marcos, Texas 78666, on or before the date and time specified in the bid documents. All bids are clocked in on the official time/date stamp located in the Office of the Purchasing Manager.

Bid Opening Procedures


Each bid document contains detailed specifications of the goods or services required. The package includes a boiler plate containing instructions and information for bidders; the time, date, and place of the opening; and bid form. Each part of the bid package is vital to the correct and complete submission of the bid and should be regarded as such.

Proposal Acknowledgment Procedures


Proposals are publicly acknowledged at the time, date and place stated in the proposal packet. Proposals are not public record until the award of a contract by City Council.

Bid Viewing


All bid openings are public and anyone is permitted to attend. When all bids have been opened and read aloud they are available for public view. Anyone not present at the public opening may look at the bids during normal business hours. Please contact the Purchasing Division to schedule a time to do so.

Selection of a Winning Bid


The bid will be awarded to the lowest responsible bidder. A responsible bidder is a manufacturer, producer, dealer, vendor, or bona fide manufacturer's agent who has demonstrated judgment and integrity, is of good reputation, is experienced, and has a record of satisfactory performance and financial security.

The Purchasing Division may use a reference from the user department or a bidder qualification sheet to determine the successful bidder.

Rejection of Bid


The City reserves the right to reject all bids, or all bids for any one or more goods or services included in the proposal when such rejection is in the best interest of the taxpayers of the City.

Causes for rejection include, but are not limited to; poor past performance, non-compliance with any portion of the specifications, and/or failure to provide a bid bond/ performance bond.

Notification of Award


The Purchasing Division will tabulate all bids received and accepted and shall determine the low bidder(s). The successful bidder will be issued a contract award.

References & Bonding Issues


Bids and projects that involve a service require at least 3 different references. Completion of a statement of bidder's qualification form as part of the bid package is also required for construction bids.

A bid bond and/or performance bond may also be required. A bid bond is a guarantee that the vendor can provide a performance bond in 100% of the dollar amount of the bid. If the vendor cannot provide the performance bond, the bid bond is forfeited and the next lowest bidder is awarded the contract. The bid bond requirement may also be waived if it is in the best interest of the City to do so.

The performance bond is used as a guarantee that the work will be performed satisfactorily. If the vendor does not perform, the bond is used as liquidated damages in the amount of the difference between the vendor's price and the next low bidder's price.

Protest Procedures


Any protest to the City's consideration of any bid must be submitted in writing and received by the Purchasing Manager no later than 5 calendar days after bid opening. A written reply to the protest will be sent to the protesting bidder by the Purchasing Manager. The protest must contain:
  • Identification of the statute or procedure that is alleged to have been violated
  • A precise statement of the relevant facts
  • Identification of the issues to be resolved
  • Aggrieved party's argument and supporting documentation

Bidder Default - Consequences


If a bidder fails to fulfill the terms and conditions of the bid, they may forfeit their bid/performance bond and may be removed from the bidder's list for future bid solicitation. In addition, penalties may be incurred for late delivery or frequent back orders. With documentation, a vendor may have the contract terminated and be subject to liquidated damages for the remainder of the contract term.