As you all know, when Wisconsin municipalities or state agencies bid their new construction projects, contractors competitively bid for the public work contract. By law, the work must be awarded to the “lowest responsible bidder,” however, determining whether a bidder is “responsible” can be nearly impossible for small governmental entities unless there is an extensive contractor prequalification process – a burdensome duty that is beyond the resource capabilities of many local governments.
To assist local governments with identifying responsible contractors, CBG has created a Bidder Database. The database is a free, easy to use online research resource that holds extensive records on over 10,500 contractors. Through a simple search, the database compiles links to judgments, tax liens, debarment records, OSHA violations, and more. All data is verifiable and reliable public information and provides local governments, other project owners, general contractors and engineering firms with a convenient tool to vet contractors and subcontractors.
To enhance the bidder database, CBG recently partnered with the League of Wisconsin Municipalities (LWM) and the Wisconsin Counties Association (WCA). Local government officials now have exclusive access to a project evaluation form that may be completed for public works projects. The project evaluation will be connected to the contractor (or subcontractor) that was evaluated and available to view by other local governments and all other registered users.
The project evaluation is a short, easy-to-navigate digital questionnaire. In addition to basic project information, local government officials are asked if the project was on time, on budget and to project specifications. If the project was not on time, on budget or to project specifications, additional dropdown questions allow for additional information.
Only authorized local government officials have access to the evaluation form. Once completed, the project evaluation is reviewed by CBG staff and posted within the bidder database for the applicable contractor(s). CBG has always tried to be a resource for local governments and the new cooperative efforts with the LWM and WCA is a significant strengthening of these important relationships.