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Standards and Specifications

Issuance of specifications

The Chief Purchasing Officer shall have the responsibility for issuing and maintaining all standard specifications for supplies, services, and construction required by the state. Among its duties, it shall, to the greatest extent practicable:

  1. Prepare and issue standard specifications for supplies, services, and construction commonly required by the state.
  2. Revise all standard specifications to conform to all technical and scientific advances pertaining to the supplies, services, and construction described in those specifications, and to reflect changes in the state's requirements and user agencies; and
  3. Establish guidelines for drafting specifications.
  4. All specifications shall be drafted so as to maximize, to the extent practicable, competition in fulfillment of the state's requirements.

Certification by building commissioner. -- The state controller shall order no payment to any person on account of any contract for any construction which is subject to the state building code, unless and until the state building commissioner has certified to the state controller in writing that: (I) All permits required under Sections 23-27.3 -113.1 for the construction for which such payment has been requested have been issued and are valid; and (ii) The state building commissioner has, pursuant to Sections 23-27.3 - 113.3.1, verified that all construction work for which payment has been required and which state law requires to be performed by licensed persons has been performed by persons so licensed.

Solicitations shall be prepared in a manner and form which enables suppliers to submit fully responsive and knowledgeable offers, and which clearly define the criteria to be used in evaluating responses.

All material submitted by requisitioners to the Division of Purchases for action shall be in sufficient detail and shall contain adequate supportive information to: adequately describe the purpose, use, or desired performance level of the requirement; and identify measurable criteria for evaluation of offers including, but not limited to, acceptance testing.

Wherever possible, solicitations shall incorporate standard specification, describing the level of performance required, and measurable criteria which define acceptance.

In certain cases, following detailed evaluation, brand name or other designations may be defined as standard items, where it is determined to be in the best interest of the State with regard to economies of scale, or cost or value analysis.

The Division of Purchases shall develop Standards Committees (product advisory committees) to review, develop, and update specifications and standard item designations for frequently and/or extensively used products.

Selection and evaluation criteria shall be clearly defined in all solicitations.

The invitation for bids shall state whether award shall be made on the basis of the lowest bid price or the lowest evaluated or responsive bid price. If the latter basis is used, the objective measurable criteria to be utilized shall be set forth in the invitation for bids, if available.

Unless alternate offers are clearly requested or allowed, only those offers which are responsive, in all material respects, to the terms of the solicitation shall be considered.

Alternate specifications may be considered only where it has been determined that the alternate satisfies all objective performance characteristics of the procurement, and represents a reduction in expenditure.

Alternate terms and conditions may be considered only where consideration is determined to be in the best interest of the State to do so, and where they constitute a reduction in expenditure.

Used Items may be purchased to achieve financial benefit if the manufacturer will provide warranties for maintenance requirements and for the replacement of parts. Such certification/warranties shall be the same as that provided for new equipment. Purchase of used items which exceed a value of $250 shall require approval by the Division of Purchases.

Prohibition against the user of lead based paints. - When purchasing paint products or contracting or subcontracting for painting, construction, improvement, completion, or repair of any public building, any public road, any public bridge, or any public construction, all governmental bodies and public agencies, as defined by sections 37-2-7(11) and 37-2-7(16), shall be prohibited from the use of lead based paint.

State purchase of recycled products. -

  1. The state shall, through its purchasing policy and practice, affirmatively promote the use of recycled products. The Department of Administration in conjunction with the Department of Environmental Management shall, through regulations, establish a time table requiring increased utilization by the state of recycled products. In January of each year, the Department of Administration shall report to the General Assembly the State's progress in utilizing recycled products materials and supplies for the preceding twelve (12) months.
  2. With respect to office paper products, at least fifty percent (50%) of the expenditure for office paper products purchased by the state of Rhode Island, its agencies and departments, shall be recycled paper products by fiscal year 1995.
  3. The Department of Administration in conjunction with the Department of Environmental Management shall annually establish comprehensive technical specifications based on research by the Department of Environmental Management for the recycled products, materials and supplies to be purchased by the state under this section. These specifications shall include the minimum performance and quality attributes as well as minimum pre- and post-consumer content.
  4. The Director of the Department of Administration, acting as the Chief Purchasing Officer of the State, shall direct that all subsequent purchases of the subject recycled products, materials and supplies by the state, its agencies and departments shall meet the source specifications of pre-consumer and/or post-consumer content standards established under subsection (c) of this section.
  5. Subsequent discovery by the State, its agencies or departments that products delivered by vendors to the state as "recycled products" do not satisfy the specifications of "recycled" content stated in the award, shall be grounds for the return of all discrepant goods, refunds of all moneys paid, termination of all outstanding contracts and orders, and at the discretion of the Chief Purchasing Officer suspension of the vendor's involvement in state procurement for a period of up to twenty-four (24) months.