Replaces previously released version in its entirety


8.8. State Finance Law § 139-j(3)(a)(3)establishes participation in a pre-bidders conference as a permissible contact.  However, after vendors have submitted bids, the Governmental Entity typically invites certain vendors back in for a "second round." Sometimes those who made the "first cut" come in together or separately.  Do such second round meetings fall within the permissible contact category?  Do such meetings have to be set forth in the RFP/IFB/solicitation to fall within the permissible contact category? (Last Updated: 6/8/2006)

The exception pursuant to State Finance Law § 139-j(3)(a)(3) only applies to conferences that are provided for in a request for proposal, invitation for bid, or any other method for soliciting a response from Offerers intending to result in a procurement contract.  Therefore, the Governmental Entity must notify Offerers in its solicitation of any pre-award activities in which the result is to provide an opportunity for a Governmental Entity to further evaluate and access the qualifications of the Offerers beyond their written response.  In this example, the second round and other such meetings would fall under the exception as long the Governmental Entity notified Offerers of this process in its solicitation.


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