Beginning with the October 2, 2015 bid letting (and all subsequent bid lettings), MDOT will implement a “Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Goal at Time of Bid” process on all FHWA federal-aid projects that have a DBE participation goal. FAA federal-aid projects will not be subject to this “DBE Goal at Time of Bid” process.
This new “DBE Goal at Time of Bid” process is being implemented by MDOT to bring their DBE program into compliance with 49 CFR Part 26 Disadvantaged Business Enterprise: Program Implementation Modifications; Final Rule that was published October 2, 2014 and became effective November 3, 2014.
With the implementation of the “DBE Goal at Time of Bid” process the previously implemented “DBE Information at Time of Bid” process, which applied only to projects with a DBE participation goal of 6% and higher, will be discontinued.
Under the “DBE Goal at Time of Bid” process, all bidders must, on projects that have a DBE participation goal, input the overall DBE percentage they have attained at the time of the bid within an Expedite “DBE Goal” folder set up for that purpose. The DBE Goal folder will only appear in Expedite for those projects that have a DBE participation goal, and it will look similar to the “Designated and Specialty Items” and “Warranty Obligations” folders bidders are accustomed to seeing in Expedite. Expedite will not include a “DBE Goal” folder for projects that have no DBE participation goal.
When inputting the overall DBE percentage they have attained at the time of bid, the bidder will enter a numeric number, with or without a decimal point and without a percent sign (i.e. 0, 2, 4.0, 6.35), in the field provided in the DBE Goal folder.
If a bidder doesn’t open the DBE Goal folder, or opens the folder but doesn’t input the DBE percentage they have attained, the DBE Goal folder will stay “red”. As you know, Expedite will allow the submittal of a bid with a “red” folder, but not without warning the bidder of an error and allowing the bidder to back up to investigate and correct identified errors.
Bidders should NEVER submit a bid with a “red” DBE Goal folder because failure to provide the overall DBE percentage attained at the time of bid may result in the rejection of a bid, if that bid is determined to be the low bid.
The next step in the new process requires the two lowest bidders, regardless of their bid status (as submitted, as checked, or TBA), to execute either of the following actions within 5 calendar days of the bid letting:
If the bidder has attained the DBE participation goal, they must submit the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Participation Sheets (MDOT Form 0178) by email to the specified website.
If the bidder is unable to meet the DBE participation goal, they must submit an Abbreviated Contractor Good Faith Effort Application (MDOT Form 0188A) by email to the specified website. This submittal must also include the DBE Participation Sheets (MDOT Form 0178) for the DBE participation the bidder has attained to meet any portion of the goal.
As MDOT acknowledges the two lowest bidders may be unable to obtain a signed DBE Participation Sheet (MDOT Form 0178) within 5 calendar days of the bid letting, an unsigned DBE Participation Sheet may be submitted, if accompanied by one of the following:
A quote from the DBE’s verified email or fax number (including any attachments)
A quote on the DBE’s company letterhead (including a signature of the DBE firm). Quotes must be dated and include the price(s) and description of work to be performed. Quotes received from truckers or suppliers must be for a specific project, letting or time period.
It is anticipated that when unsigned DBE Participation Sheets are submitted the bidder will continue to pursue getting the sheets signed by the DBE and submitted as quickly as possible.
If the determined low bidder is unable to meet the DBE participation goal, additional information (the traditional Good Faith Effort documentation) relating to their Abbreviated Contractor Good Faith Effort Application will be required, as specified in the MDOT DBE Program Procedures.
If the determined low bidder fails to submit their attained DBE percentage with their bid or they fail to submit the DBE Participation Sheets or an Abbreviated Contractor Good Faith Effort Application within the required 5 calendar days of the bid letting, MDOT may award the contract to the second low bidder, or otherwise exercise its discretion in accordance with subsection 102.13 of the Standard Specifications for Construction. Should MDOT reject the bid, the determined low bidder can appeal the bid rejection in accordance with subsection 102.11 and 102.12 of the Standard Specifications for Construction. MDOT’s denial of the determined low bidders appeal will result in payment of the bidders bid guarantee in accordance with subsection 102.17 of the Standard Specifications for Construction.
In implementing the “DBE Goal at Time of Bid” process, MDOT is also implementing a revised Good Faith Effort (GFE) process timeline. The revised GFE timeline is as follows:
Within 28 calendar days of the Department’s transmittal of the contract and bond forms, a determined low bidder who cannot meet the DBE participation goal must submit either:
A Contractor Good Faith Effort Application (MDOT Form 0188) and all supporting documentation
All GFE documentation to fully support a previously submitted Abbreviated Contractor Good Faith Effort Application (MDOT Form 0188A)
Within 12 calendar days of the Department’s receipt of a completed GFE request, the determined low bidder will be notified of the GFE Committee’s determination.
Within 2 calendar days of their receipt of an adverse determination, the determined low bidder may, in writing, appeal that determination.
Within 7 calendar days of receipt of the determined low bidders appeal, the GFE Appeals Panel will meet and issue their determination.
The full and current GFE process requirements and the specific timeline details are contained in the MDOT DBE Program Procedures.
To ensure your understanding of this new process, we strongly encourage all bidders to review MDOT’s Contractor Announcement for DBE Goal at Time of Bid Implementation, the Special Provision for Disadvantaged Business Enterprises Goal at Time of Bid and the MDOT DBE Program Procedures, Good Faith Efforts excerpt.
This “DBE Goal at Time of Bid” process was developed through a collaborative effort involving MDOT, MITA and FHWA.
If you have any questions about the DBE Goal at Time of Bid process, contact Glenn Bukoski at firstname.lastname@example.org or in the MITA office at 517-347-8336.