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Posts for Purchasing and Contracting

Using RFPs as a Competitive Procurement Tool

Using RFPs as a Competitive Procurement Tool

April 3, 2018 by Judy Isaac
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

In this post, Public Works Consultant Judy Isaac examines how an agency can use a Request for Proposals (RFP) as a competitive procurement tool.

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Service Contracting for Personal and Purchased Services

Service Contracting for Personal and Purchased Services

February 1, 2018 by Judy Isaac
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Agencies have wide latitude in setting their own policies and procedures when it comes to selecting and contracting for personal and purchased services. Public Works Consultant Judy Isaac defines what type of work falls under each service and how that impacts the type of contract used.

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Contracting – Some General Principles for Counties

Contracting – Some General Principles for Counties

November 30, 2017 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

This blog article discusses how counties can contract for goods and services, including the role that elected officials other than county commissioners may play in the process.

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Selecting A & E Services

Selecting A & E Services

November 28, 2017 by Judy Isaac
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Public Works Consultant Judy Isaac simplifies the complicated process for procuring architectural and engineering services for projects not funded by federal dollars. 

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Rosters for Public Works, A&E, and Purchases

Rosters for Public Works, A&E, and Purchases

October 5, 2017 by Judy Isaac
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Use of a roster service offers a less restrictive and time-consuming method than the formal, competitive bid process. Public Works Consultant Judy Isaac reviews the types of rosters that are available to local governments in Washington State. 

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New Legislation Impacts Purchasing, Contracting

New Legislation Impacts Purchasing, Contracting

July 26, 2017 by Judy Isaac
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Purchasing and contracting procedures for Washington local governments changed on July 23, 2017.  Public Works Consultant Judy Isaac reviews the changes. 

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Acrimonious Acronyms in Purchasing and Contracting

Acrimonious Acronyms in Purchasing and Contracting

April 20, 2017 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Will you need an RFQ or an AFB and will you have to ask for an RFP before awarding a contract?  This post helps to demystify the most common acronyms in purchasing and contracting and when you should employ one versus another. 

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The New Uniform Guidance, 2 CFR 200 – Part 2

The New Uniform Guidance, 2 CFR 200 – Part 2

February 17, 2017 by Toni Nelson
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Federal awards given to local governments are now subject to revised audit standards under New Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200. In the second of this 2-part series, learn more about how the certification requirement and allowable costs have changed, and what you need to do to become compliant with the new guidance. 

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Federal Single Audit and the New Uniform Guidance, 2 CFR 200

Federal Single Audit and the New Uniform Guidance, 2 CFR 200

December 2, 2016 by Toni Nelson
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Federal awards given to local governments are now subject to revised audit standards under New Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200. Learn more about these new standards and what it means for your entity's policies regarding procurement, purchasing, and grant and contract management.

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Electronic Signatures, Submissions, and Bids for Local Governments

Electronic Signatures, Submissions, and Bids for Local Governments

September 21, 2016 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

SHB 2427 has significantly expanded the ability of local governments to send and receive electronic signatures, submissions, and bid documents. But what exactly are electronic signatures, and how do you use them?

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2016 Legislative Changes Affect Some Purchasing and Contract Procedures

2016 Legislative Changes Affect Some Purchasing and Contract Procedures

July 26, 2016 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

On June 9, 2016 three legislative bills became effective that affect the procedures for purchasing and contracting for local governments in Washington State. Here is a quick summary of those changes.

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Do Prevailing Wages Always Prevail? Lessons Learned from our Recent Webinar

Do Prevailing Wages Always Prevail? Lessons Learned from our Recent Webinar

December 15, 2015 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

On October 15, MRSC hosted a great webinar entitled, The Top Ten Things You Should Know About Prevailing Wage. We were lucky enough to have two fantastic prevailing wage experts from the Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) join us: Laura Herman of the Prevailing Wages Division (L&I) and Industrial Relations Specialist Reasa Pearson. We learned a lot of things during the webinar, bu...

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MRSC Launches New Contracting Requirements Tool

MRSC Launches New Contracting Requirements Tool

July 10, 2015 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

MRSC is excited to launch a new online research tool, Find Your Contracting Requirements, which allows local government officials to quickly pinpoint their statutory requirements for public works, purchasing, and service contracts.

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Legislature Tweaks Contracting Statutes

Legislature Tweaks Contracting Statutes

June 8, 2015 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

An overview of the important changes to contracting statutes from the 2015 legislative session that affect local governments.

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Contracting – Some General Principles for Cities

Contracting – Some General Principles for Cities

May 27, 2015 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

A number of issues may arise regarding the respective roles of a city (or town) council and the city (or town) administration - whether headed by a mayor or a city manager - when a city contracts for a service or a public work or makes purchases of supplies, equipment, or materials. This blog post concentrates on a few general principles that apply to the contractin...

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Important Tips for Writing Your Agency’s Procurement Policies

Important Tips for Writing Your Agency’s Procurement Policies

January 29, 2015 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Adherence to an agency-wide procurement policy/procedure manual is critical to combat irregularities in purchasing and bidding and maintain public trust. If your agency doesn’t yet have a procurement manual, or if you’re looking to give yours a refresher, I’ve put together a few tips in checklist form to help you get started.

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Waiving Competitive Bidding Requirements in the Event of an Emergency

August 7, 2014 by Pat Mason
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

In view of the recent Oso landslide and numerous and destructive wildfires in our state, I thought it would be timely to provide a brief review of the rules in state law relating to waiving competitive bidding requirements in emergency situations, when a local government needs to act quickly.  These rules are not new and are not complicated.
Basically, there is a general exemption from...

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Off-Site Fabrication Reporting Requirements Sunset

January 2, 2014 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Until December 31, 2013, contractors that used prefabricated project specific items produced out-of-state had to report that fact to the Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) on their Affidavits of Wages Paid for public works contracts estimated to cost over $1 million.   Until then, all contracts for public works...

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Contracting for Services Publication

Contracting for Services Publication

December 11, 2013 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Our new Contracting for Services publication has generated a lot of interest and some great comments from folks who have downloaded it. In response to some of these comments, we have added some additional language, which...

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Announcing Our Newly Revised Publication: City Bidding Book

Announcing Our Newly Revised Publication: City Bidding Book

June 11, 2013 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Purchasing and Contracting


MRSC is pleased to announce its newly revised publication, the City Bidding Book.
This publication is designed to assist city and town officials in determining whether competitive bids are required for purchasing supplies, materials, equipment, or services, or when contracting for public...

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New Public Procurement Laws Approved in 2013 Legislative Session

May 14, 2013 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Mike Purdy has posted on his Public Contracting Blog a great summary of laws passed in the 2013 Legislative Session that impact public works contracting and purchasing. Be sure to take a look.

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