Instructions to Bidders

1. READ, REVIEW AND COMPLY: It shall be the bidder’s responsibility to read this entire document, review all enclosures and attachments, and comply with all requirements specified herein.

2. NOTICE TO BIDDERS: All bids are subject to the provisions of the Instructions to Bidders, special terms and conditions specific to this Invitation for Bids, the specifications, and the North Carolina General Contract Terms and Conditions.
CPCC objects to and will not evaluate or consider any additional terms and conditions submitted with a bidder response.   This applies to any language appearing in or attached to the document as part of the bidder’s response.  DO NOT ATTACH ANY ADDITIONAL TERMS AND CONDITIONS.
By execution and delivery of this document, the bidder agrees that any additional terms and conditions, whether submitted purposely or inadvertently, shall have no force or effect.

3. DEFINITIONS:

BIDDER: Company, firm, corporation, partnership, individual, etc., submitting a response to an Invitation for Bids.
TERM CONTRACT: A contract generally intended to cover all normal requirements for a commodity for a specified period of time based on estimated quantities only.
STATEWIDE TERM CONTRACT: A Term Contract for all agencies, unless exempted by statute, rule, or special term and condition specific to this bid.
AGENCY SPECIFIC TERM CONTRACT: A Term Contract for a specific agency.
OPEN MARKET CONTRACT: A contract for the purchase of a commodity not covered by a term contract.

4. EXECUTION: Failure to sign under EXECUTION section will render bid invalid.

5. ORDER OF PRECEDENCE: In cases of conflict between specific provisions in this bid, the order of precedence shall be (1) special terms and conditions specific to this bid, (2) specifications, (3) North Carolina General Contract Terms and Conditions, and (4) Instructions to Bidders.

5. ORDER OF PRECEDENCE: In cases of conflict between specific provisions in this bid, the order of precedence shall be (1) special terms and conditions specific to this bid, (2) specifications, (3) North Carolina General Contract Terms and Conditions, and (4) Instructions to Bidders.

6. TIME FOR CONSIDERATION: Unless otherwise indicated on the first page of this document, bidder’s offer shall be valid for 45 days from the date of bid opening.  Preference may be given to bids allowing not less than 45 days for consideration and acceptance.

7. PROMPT PAYMENT DISCOUNTS: Bidders are urged to compute all discounts into the price offered.  If a prompt payment discount is offered, it will not be considered in the award of the contract except as a factor to aid in resolving cases of identical prices.

8. SPECIFICATIONS: Any deviation from specifications indicated herein must be clearly pointed out; otherwise, it will be considered that items offered are in strict compliance with these specifications, and bidder will be held responsible therefore.  Deviations shall be explained in detail.  The bidder shall not construe this paragraph as inviting deviation or implying that any deviation will be acceptable.

9. INFORMATION AND DESCRIPTIVE LITERATURE: Bidder is to furnish all information requested and in the spaces provided in this document.  Further, if required elsewhere in this bid, each bidder must submit with their bid sketches, descriptive literature and/or complete specifications covering the products offered.  Reference to literature submitted with a previous bid will not satisfy this provision.  Bids which do not comply with these requirements will be subject to rejection.

10. RECYCLING AND SOURCE REDUCTION: It is the policy of this State to encourage and promote the purchase of products with recycled content to the extent economically practicable, and to purchase items which are reusable, refillable, repairable, more durable, and less toxic to the extent that the purchase or use is practicable and cost-effective.
We also encourage and promote using minimal packaging and the use of recycled/recyclable products in the packaging of commodities purchased.  However, no sacrifice in quality of packaging will be acceptable.  The company remains responsible for providing packaging that will protect the commodity and contain it for its intended use.
Companies are strongly urged to bring to the attention of the purchasers, in the agency which issued the solicitation document, those products or packaging they offer which have recycled content and that are recyclable.

11. CLARIFICATIONS/INTERPRETATIONS: Any and all questions regarding this document must be addressed to the purchaser named on the cover sheet of this document.  Do not contact the user directly.  Any and all revisions to this document shall be made only by written addendum from the agency which issued the solicitation document.  The bidder is cautioned that the requirements of this bid can be altered only by written addendum and that verbal communications from whatever source are of no effect.

12. ACCEPTANCE AND REJECTION: CPCC reserves the right to reject any and all bids, to waive any informality in bids and, unless otherwise specified by the bidder, to accept any item in the bid.  If either a unit price or extended price is obviously in error and the other is obviously correct, the incorrect price will be disregarded.

13. REFERENCES: CPCC reserves the right to require a list of users of the exact item offered. CPCC may contact these users to determine acceptability of the bid.  Such information may be considered in the evaluation of the bid.

14. TAXES:

FEDERAL:  All agencies participating in this contract are exempt from Federal Taxes, such as excise and transportation. Exemption forms submitted by the contractor will be executed and returned by the using agency.
OTHER:  Prices offered are not to include any personal property taxes, nor any sales or use tax (or fees) unless required by the North Carolina Department of Revenue.

15. AWARD OF CONTRACT: As directed by statute, qualified bids will be evaluated and acceptance may be made of the lowest and best bid most advantageous to CPCC as determined upon consideration of such factors as:  prices offered; the quality of the articles offered; the general reputation and performance capabilities of the bidders; the substantial conformity with the specifications and other conditions set forth in the bid; the suitability of the articles for the intended use; the related services needed; the date or dates of delivery and performance; and such other factors deemed by CPCC to be pertinent or peculiar to the purchase in question.  Unless otherwise specified by CPCC or the bidder, CPCC reserves the right to accept any item or group of items on a multi-item bid.
In addition, on TERM CONTRACTS, CPCC reserves the right to make partial, progressive or multiple awards: where it is advantageous to award separately by items; or where more than one supplier is needed to provide the contemplated requirements as to quantity, quality, delivery, service, geographical areas; other factors deemed by CPCC to be pertinent or peculiar to the purchase in question.

16. HISTORICALLY UNDERUTILIZED BUSINESSES:  Pursuant to General Statute 143-48 and Executive Order #77, the State invites and encourages participation in this procurement process by businesses owned by minorities, women, disabled, disabled business enterprises and non-profit work centers for the blind and severely disabled.

17. CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION: As provided by statute and rule, the agency which issued the solicitation document will consider keeping trade secrets which the bidder does not wish disclosed confidential.  Each page shall be identified in boldface at the top and bottom as “CONFIDENTIAL” by the bidder.  Cost information shall not be deemed confidential.  In spite of what is labeled as a trade secret, the determination whether it is or not will be determined by North Carolina law.

18. SAMPLES: Sample of items, when required, must be furnished as stipulated herein, free of expense, and if not destroyed will, upon request be returned at the bidder’s expense.  Request for the return of samples must be made within 10 days following date of bid opening.  Otherwise the samples will become CPCC property.  Each individual sample must be labeled with the bidder’s name, bid number, and item number.  A sample on which an award is made, will be retained until the contract is completed, and then returned, if requested, as specified above.

19. PROTEST PROCEDURES: When an offeror wants to protest a contract awarded pursuant to this solicitation, that is over $10,000, they must submit a written request to the Executive Officer of the agency which issued the solicitation document at the address given in the solicitation document entitled “Mailing Instructions”.  This request must be received in the office of the issuing agency within thirty (30) consecutive calendar days from the date of the contract award, and must contain specific sound reasons and any supporting documentation for the protest.  Note:  Contract award notices are sent only to those actually awarded contracts, and not to every person or firm responding to this solicitation.  All protests will be handled pursuant to the North Carolina Administrative Code, Title 1, Department of Administration, Chapter 5, Purchase and Contract, Section 5B.1519.

20. MISCELLANEOUS: Masculine pronouns shall be read to include feminine pronouns, and the singular of any word or phrase shall be read to include the plural and vice versa.