Bids & Purchasing
John Cowan, Purchasing Manager
The City of Myrtle Beach has a new online system for posting bids and proposal requests, as well as for vendor registration. Current bid postings are available on-line here. New and existing vendors can register here. If you need assistance, please call the Vendor Registry Support Team number at 844-802-9202.
DOING BUSINESS WITH THE CITY OF MYRTLE BEACH
Thank you for your interest in the City of Myrtle Beach. Your involvement as a provider of goods and services is critical to meeting the city’s operational and service delivery requirements. The Purchasing Division is the primary point of contact for the procurement of goods and services by the city. This page will help you navigate and understand the procurement process, including how to pursue city contracts. It also highlights the regulations and laws that govern the procurement process.
Procurement serves the public and accomplishes critical city functions. Generally, the process takes the following steps: A need is identified. A solicitation is written and published. A competition is held. A vendor is selected and a determination is made about its responsibility. A contract is negotiated and signed. Finally, the contract is performed or delivered.
CURRENT BIDS AND SOLICITATIONS
The Purchasing Division
The Finance Department's Purchasing Division is charged with providing strategic and material management services to all city departments. The Purchasing Division also is responsible for the procurement of all supplies, materials, and equipment as well as professional services necessary for the delivery of municipal services.
The Purchasing Division is the only entity within the city of Myrtle Beach authorized to contract for goods and non-professional services which cost more than $2,500, without City Council approval. It is also the only entity within city government authorized to issue solicitations for goods and non-professional services valued at more than $2,500.
The Purchasing Division is comprised of three teams, each headed by a Procurement Buyer. Each team is aligned by product/service delivery type. The buyers are the key contacts for vendor inquiries regarding any procurement-related issues. Staff also is available to assist vendors and answer any questions regarding all aspects of the procurement process.
The Purchasing staff buys goods and services daily; however, a major focus throughout the year is the management of more than 1,000 annual contracts. These are established to provide an efficient method for the city to purchase goods and services that are needed on a repetitive basis or that may realize substantial savings by aggregating city-wide requirements.
Most of these annual contracts are typically for goods and non-professional services where providers are widespread, thus giving vendors a number of opportunities to submit bids and obtain contracts with the city. Most annual contracts carry a one year term/period with an optional renewal of up to four additional one year terms/periods. The Purchasing Division publishes in a local newspaper when a new solicitation is required.
Vendors are encouraged to monitor the Purchasing Division site on a regular basis for access to city solicitations, valuable procurement-related information and names of staff members assigned to the various commodities and services purchased by city departments.
Helpful Links For Small Business
City of Myrtle Beach: www.cityofmyrtlebeach.com
Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce: www.myrtlebeachareachamber.com/member/business/
Score Chapter: https://grandstrand.score.org
Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC):www.scsbdc.com/ptac.php
Small Business Development Center: http://www.asbdc-us.org/
Women’s Business Center: http://awbc.org/networks.asp
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How can I register as a vendor for the city?
A: All vendors/suppliers doing business with the City of Myrtle Beach should submit a Vendor Application to the Purchasing Division.
Q: How can I obtain a copy of the current contract or bid tabulation?
A: Vendors can access copies of current contracts and tabulations from the Current Bid Solicitations or through the Purchasing Division.
Q: Where can bidders drop off their bid/proposals?
A: Sealed bids and proposals must be received at the location specified in the solicitation document prior to the due date and time or they will be considered non-responsive. Bids and proposals received after the due date/time will not be accepted.
Q: Can we submit bids electronically?
A: No, we do not accept bids electronically. Bids/solicitations must be presented by hard copy to the Purchasing Division in a sealed envelope.
Q: When will bids open?
A: Please visit the Current Bid Solicitations page and search by solicitation.
Q: How will I be notified if I am the successful or unsuccessful vendor or bidder?
A: The successful vendor(s) or bidder(s) of an annual contract is notified of award by either by phone or letter from the city's Purchasing Division.
Q: Can I change my bid?
A: Sealed bids cannot be changed by the city or the bidder once they have been opened and read aloud publicly. The city may seek clarification in some instances, but not to change or alter the bid that was submitted. Submit bids that reflect the best price your firm can offer and the delivery times that you can meet. Some solicitations include penalties/liquidated damages for late delivery of products. Ability to perform under the contract will be subject to evaluation and may affect future awards.
The Purchasing Division values the relationship between city government and the vendor business community and works toward maintaining mutual goodwill at all times. Toward this end, the Purchasing Division strives to:
Communicate clearly to vendors and help simplify the city’s procurement process
Build trust between customers and suppliers
Handle all supplier questions and concerns in a fair, prompt, and courteous manner
Encourage healthy competition and maximum participation among vendors for city business and maintain an open and fair solicitation process
Involve suppliers in the development of clear, fair, and complete specifications and standards necessary to meet the city’s product and service requirements
Observe strict truthfulness and highest ethics in all transactions and correspondence
Assist vendors and departments with contractual problems and other issues related to contractor performance, product delivery, and payment disputes or delays
Assist in resolving problems in a creative, fair, and prompt manner
Encourage participation from local, small, minority, veteran-owned, and women-owned businesses for city contracts
Conduct vendor outreach, advertising, web broadcasting, and networking with the business community to increase vendor participation in city contracting
Pursue and utilize procurement methods that are efficient in meeting the needs of the city
To make it easy and convenient for entrepreneurs and existing businesses to learn more about conducting business with Myrtle Beach, the Purchasing Division provides a full range of business services. Also, vendors wanting to do business with the city or other government branches are encouraged to contact the local SCORE chapter at 843-918-1079 for more educational information. The Myrtle Beach SCORE office is at 605 10th Avenue North, Myrtle Beach, SC 29577. In addition, the Small Business Procurement Technical Assistance Center is at 1225 Laurel Street, Columbia, SC
These entities are committed to enhancing participation for disadvantaged, minority, veteran and woman owned businesses in public/government contracting and purchasing activities.
Presenting Your Products
Purchasing staff is available to review new product or service introductions for various markets. Meetings to present new products or services may be scheduled with the appropriate staff. Visiting hours are by appointment only. Appointments may be scheduled by calling 843-918-2170 or by directly contacting the purchasing member assigned the product or service in question.
Bidding and Contracting
Public notices of formal solicitations are available from the following sources:
FORMAL (IFB, RFP)
Myrtle Beach Sun News
South Carolina Business Opportunities
DISCRETIONARY (RFP, RFQ, RFI)
Myrtle Beach Sun News*
South Carolina Business Opportunities
* Publication in this newspaper is dependent upon
current contract status with the city.
NOTE: It is the responsibility of interested vendors to monitor the city’s website and the newspapers for bidding opportunities. Vendors registered with the city will receive notifications based upon the codes they have selected.
Bid Document Downloads
Purchasing makes available a synopsis of formal solicitation documents on the city’s website under the Current Bid Solicitation page.
The Purchasing Division uses the following methods to procure goods and services:
Method: Request for Price Quote (RFQ) – Informal
When Used: For one time purchase of goods and non-professional services valued at less than $5,000 when requirements are clearly defined and competition exists.
Basis of Award: Lowest Responsible Bidder
Method: Invitation for Bid (IFB) – Formal
When Used: For either one time or recurring purchase of goods and non-professional services valued at $5,000 or more when requirements are clearly defined and competition exists.
Basis of Award: Lowest Responsible Bidder
Method: Request for Proposal (RFP) – Formal
When Used: For goods and services contracts when factors other than price are evaluated and negotiations are desired. Respondent is expected to provide innovative ideas as opposed to following published scope of services.
Basis of Award: Weighted Evaluation Criteria Including Cost
Submission of Bids
Bids and proposals must be received at the location specified in the solicitation document prior to the due date and time or they will be considered non-responsive. Bids and proposals received after the due date/time will not be accepted.
Bids are due to the Purchasing Division by the designated date and time listed on the bidding documents. Submission either by hard copy in person or by mail. It is the responsibility of the bidder to confirm that all bids are submitted in accordance with the solicitation document. The City of Myrtle Beach is not responsible for late or misdirected mail.
Bids are opened as specified in the bid request. Bids are due to the Purchasing Division by the designated date and time on the bidding documents. Bids will be opened and publicly read aloud on the day and time bids are due. Bid openings are held at the Purchasing Division, 3231 Mr. Joe White Avenue, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina 29577.
Bids will be opened and read publicly at the time and date specified in the solicitation. Members of the public are welcome to attend, whether or not engaged in bidding. Proposals are not subject to public reading.
Bid Security Bonding
In order to protect the interests of Myrtle Beach taxpayers, the city may require surety bonds on bids and contracts depending on the dollar amount and risk involved. In particular, payment and performance bonds may be required for public works contracts which are defined as the construction, alteration, or repair of any public building or completion of any public work. Bonding is required on services over $20,000.
A bid or proposal security, in the form of a cashier's check, certified check, or bond may be required by the city depending upon the risk, complexity or dollar value of the contract. In addition, a bid or proposal security will be required in those instances where a payment and performance bond will be required after contract award. The amount of the security is usually five percent (5%) of the bid or contract value; however, the amount of the security may vary depending on the specifics of the solicitation.
In accordance with State statutes, payment and performance bonds are required on any public works contract of more than $20,000 in value.
The city may contractually require that parties doing business with the city maintain certain insurance coverage(s). If subcontractors are utilized in the performance of the contract, the prime contractor shall be required to pass along these insurance requirements to its subcontractors.
A copy of all applicable insurance certificates and endorsements must be submitted to the city in accordance with the contract prior to the start of any work. The certificate(s) of insurance must contain:
Name of insurance company
Description of types of coverage and limits
Naming of the city as additional insured (property and liability policies)
Solicitations issued by the City of Myrtle Beach may contain insurance and bonding requirements. THE BONDING AND INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS CANNOT BE WAIVED. The awarded bidder will be required to furnish the city with an insurance certificate satisfying ALL requirements stated in the solicitation document. It is advised that potential respondents consult their insurance agent prior to submitting a bid to determine whether or not you will be able to secure the necessary insurance if awarded the contract.
Local Vendor Preference Program
Established by ordinance, the Local Vendor Preference Program allows the city to grant contracting preferences to local businesses in circumstances when price alone determines the winning bid for personal property, non-professional services, and construction services, and the procurement is governed by the Myrtle Beach Local Government Code. Under the program, a business within Myrtle Beach city limits, Horry County or surrounding Counties known as the NESA area will be evaluated at a lower percentage than the actual amount of the bid, provided they meet all the requirements. The vendor must have a current City of Myrtle Beach Business License a minimum of ninety (90) days prior to the bid date, must have maintained a physical address within the defined boundaries for a period of at least one (1) year and during that time have had a majority of full-time employees and managers conducting work from this office. Additionally, provisions were included in the original ordinance granting preferences to local businesses for professional service contracts that are not governed by statute.
1. The LVP does not apply to any contract funded in whole or in part by the federal government or where the city acts as a conduit for federal money
2. The LVP does not apply to contracts where the Managing Department or City Council has determined that it would not be in the best interest of the city
Note: A local business (a.k.a. a city business) is defined as a business headquartered within the incorporated Myrtle Beach city limits.
B. City Business License and Insurance
1. Any vendor doing business within the City of Myrtle Beach is required to have a current City of Myrtle Beach Business License.
2. Any vendor doing business on city property is required to have a Certificate of Insurance on file meeting city requirements as defined on Page 12.
Evaluation and Award
It is the policy of the city to purchase from suppliers that have adequate financial strength, management and service capabilities, high ethical standards and integrity, the ability to provide materials and/or services that consistently meet the city's requirements, and are otherwise qualified and eligible to receive an award under applicable laws and regulations.
For awards made based on price alone, when two or more responsible bidders submit the lowest responsible bids, and these bids are identical in both amount and nature, the city will enter into a contract with only one of the responsible bidders selected in a manner provided by state law.
Award of Contract
Contracts for goods or nonprofessional services exceeding $5,000 in price must be awarded to the lowest responsible bidder or to the bidder who provides goods or nonprofessional services at the best value for the city.
In determining the best value, the city may consider the bidder’s purchase price, reputation, quality of goods or services, the extent to which the goods or services meet the city’s needs, past working relationship with the city, impact on the ability of the city to comply with laws and rules relating to contracting with historically underutilized businesses and nonprofit organizations employing persons with disabilities, total long-term cost to acquire the goods or services, and any relevant criteria specifically listed in the request for bids or proposals. If the city intends to award on the basis of best value, the solicitation document will indicate this fact and will contain evaluation criteria.
The city may reject any and all bids.
Identifying Winning Vendor
The city uses a two-step approach when evaluating bid responses to determine the "lowest responsible bid." The first step is to determine which responses meet or exceed the published specifications. Bidders that take "exceptions" to any of the terms, conditions or specifications contained in the solicitation may be deemed non-responsive and their bid disqualified from further consideration at this stage.
After bids that are responsive to the city’s specifications have been identified, the city seeks to determine the bidder’s responsibility. Factors that can be used to determine responsibility include, but are not limited to, past performance issues, manpower, experience, equipment, and financial ability to perform the contract. If the city determines that the lowest bid meets or exceeds the published specification and it was from a "responsible" vendor, then we will recommend that bid for the award of the contract.
Unless the bid document specifies otherwise, the Purchasing Division reserves the right to make an award on the basis of low line item, low total of line items, or in any other combination that serves the best interest or value of the city.
Reservation of Rights
The city expressly reserves the right to:
Waive any informality
Waive any defect, irregularity or informality in any offer of solicitation procedures
Reject any and all bids or portions of bids
Reissue a bid request
Extend the bid opening date and time
Procure any item by other means
Increase or decrease the quantity specified in the bid invitation, unless the bid specifies otherwise
The city will tabulate formal bids received and will post a draft of the bid tab to the city’s web page as soon as it is available.
Official notification of award can only be made by the Purchasing Division for the purchase of goods and non-professional services of more than $5,000. Notice of award given by any other city department may be premature and inaccurate. The successful bidder(s) of an annual contract is notified of award by letter from the Purchasing Division.
The city expects high-quality products and excellent service performance from its vendors. Vendor performance is a key factor when the city evaluates bids for contract award and is always subject to evaluation by the city’s using department(s). The Purchasing Division maintains Vendor Performance files for all vendors doing business with the city.
Failure to meet a specified delivery date reflects on vendor performance and could be a factor in consideration of future awards and contract extensions. It is the supplier's responsibility to notify the Purchasing Division when a delay in the delivery schedule occurs or is anticipated. At this time, the supplier must indicate the new anticipated delivery date and the reason for the delay. It should be noted that failure to deliver within a contractual delivery schedule may result in the supplier being declared in default and assessed liquidated damages, if permitted in the contract. Default may also lead to early termination of your contract.
Quality and Service
Unsatisfactory product quality or service performance also reflects on a supplier and could be a factor in consideration of future contract awards and extensions. Such performance can increase the city's operating costs and may be taken into consideration in determining whether a bidder is responsible.
Invoice and Payment
Submit all invoices for payment of goods or services rendered to:
City of Myrtle Beach
Attn: Finance/Accounts Payable
PO Box 2468
Myrtle Beach, SC 29578-2468
Invoices must be itemized as to Department or Division for which the goods and services were rendered. Also the invoice must state the Purchase Order number, Quantity, Part Number, Description, Applicable discount, Department or Division for which the goods or services were rendered, and a purchase order number. Any deviations will delay payment.
The city’s payment policy requires that payment is made within net 30 days after receipt of a correct invoice or acceptance of goods or services, whichever occurs later. Any invoices with terms "Payment upon receipt" or "Payment upon completion" are paid same as net 30 days.
Please direct any payment questions to the mailing address noted above, or call Accounts Payable at 843-918-1118.
CITY PURCHASING CODE
The Purchasing Division operates in strict compliance with federal and state laws, local laws and regulations, internal policies and professional purchasing principles. To uphold its responsibility and accountability in the expenditure of public funds, the office maintains a competitive bidding process in accordance with the city's Purchasing Code, from Chapter 2, Article IV, of the Complete Code of City Ordinances.
843-918-2170 (office) or 843-918-2182 (fax)
City of Myrtle Beach
P.O. Box 2468
Myrtle Beach, SC 29578