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Bid/Quote Method and Procedures

The Purchasing Division utilizes several different methods of acquisition. The selection depends on the type of product or service requested. The purpose is for standardization of types and methods of bid solicitations and applies to all purchases.

Primary Types of Bids/Quotes

Request for Quotations (RFQ)procurement putting together image

Used when the Purchasing Division estimates that the cost of the contemplated purchase exceeds $5,000.00 but does not exceed $25,000.00. A minimum of three (3) written quotations shall be solicited. More may be solicited if deemed appropriate by the Purchasing Manager.

Request for Proposals (RFP)

Used when the Purchasing Division estimates that the cost of the contemplated purchase exceeds $25,000.00 for goods or services and are time-specific sealed documents that must be received at the Purchasing Division at or before a specified time and date indicated on the RFP.  RFP's are opened and read publicly at the time and date specified.

The RFP is published in the Heritage newspapers of general circulation or trade journals in Washtenaw County, prior to issuance of the RFP.  Copies of the RFP shall be emailed or made available for downloading from website, to all suppliers on the Project's Bid List, plus any others the Purchasing Division deems appropriate. If the number of vendors on the list is excessive, the Purchasing Division may send out RFPs on a rotational basis. This is designed to give equal opportunities to all vendors to bid on county purchases. Unless disqualified for cause, a vendor who asks for a specific RFP shall be issued one. You can access our open bids through our website as well as our RFPs that have been awarded at Closed Bids.

Request for Qualifications

** We have also utilized Request for Qualifications and Qualification Based Services, but they are not solicited as often as the two types above. **

Sole Source/Bid Waivers

Used for items or services available from only one source. Extensive research and full documentation must be provided by the user to justify this type of purchase. Sole source is discouraged as there is no expectation of competitive pricing. Sole source purchases require the approval of both the Purchasing Manager, as well as the County Administrator.  Receipt of a Bid Waiver letter to the Purchasing Department is required.

Example of Sole Source Purchases:

  • Procurement must match or be compatible with current supplies or services.
  • It would not be economically feasible for another vendor to supply the procurement.
  • Only one vendor is uniquely qualified to meet the county's procurement objective.  (List in detail)

See also Purchasing Business Rules.


The County reserves the right to award by item, group of items, total bid,or by criteria. The Purchasing Manager may reject any and all bids if determined to be in the best interest of the County. In determining an award, qualifications of bidder, conformity to specifications of goods or services, cost, delivery terms, and overall best value will be considered. Bids will be awarded to the most responsive and responsible vendor!

Freight Costs

All quotation forms used by the Purchasing Division requests FOB Destination. A signed quotation with no exceptions specifies that freight on board to destination is included in the purchase price.

If an exception is made as FOB shipping point, the vendor must inform the Purchasing Division at time of quotation and include the estimated cost of shipping.

COD shipments cannot be accepted by Washtenaw County.

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