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Posts for Purchasing and Contracting

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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Register for Upcoming MRSC/CAEC Purchasing and Contracting Workshops

Register for Upcoming MRSC/CAEC Purchasing and Contracting Workshops

September 19, 2016 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Want to learn more about purchasing and public works contracting? MRSC and CAEC will be presenting a series of two-day workshops across the state from October 2016 through June 2017. Register now!

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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 Pr...

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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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Electronic Bidding for Small Public Works Roster Projects

Electronic Bidding for Small Public Works Roster Projects

March 27, 2015 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

In recent months, I’ve been asked about electronic bidding for public works construction projects.  Many Washington State local agencies are interested in using electronic bidding, but they are understandably concerned and cautious about meeting both the intent and letter of public works bidding requirements. With few examples out there, there is a desire for some direction and guidance as to how an agency should approach electronic bidding, if at all. In this post I’ll clarify some of the legal considerations that relate to electronic bidding and showcase a few examples of electronic bidding that have been employed by local governments in other states.

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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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Some On-Call Contracts ARE Kosher

October 30, 2012 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Last week’s blog post on on-call contracts (and Mike Purdy’s blog as well) generated much interest and many questions and comments. This present blog post is intended to clear up some misconceptions and items of confusion, as well as to report new developments.
First, the blog posts and the State Auditor’s Office (SAO) information addressed only public works projects, NOT on-call...

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On-Call Contracts Not Kosher

October 16, 2012 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

Editor's note: Please see the followup post "Some On-Call Contracts ARE Kosher," written to clarify the below article.
Over the past two to three years, there has been much interest and discussion about on-call contracts by local agencies, mostly related to prevailing wages for these types of contracts. Recently, the State Auditor’s Office (SAO) has determined that, because on-call...

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