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Bid and Quote Procedures for Iowa Cities and Counties

General guidance

1. Determine if the work is horizontal or vertical infrastructure, according to the definitions at the bottom of this page.

2. Determine if the work is considered “construction, reconstruction, or improvement”; or if it is considered “maintenance or repair”, using the definitions at the bottom of this page.

Note: Examples of horizontal infrastructure work considered to be “construction, reconstruction or improvements” and horizontal infrastructure work considered to be “maintenance and repair” are provided for cities and counties in the City Street Finance Report Instructions and County Annual Report Instructions, respectively.

3. Follow the appropriate procedures outlined below.

Horizontal infrastructure
For construction, reconstruction, or improvement work estimated to exceed the current competitive bid threshold, bid the work. Cities follow the procedures provided in Iowa Code sections 26.3 through 26.13. In accordance with Iowa Code section 331.341, county contracts for improvements which may be paid for from the secondary road fund shall be awarded in accordance with sections 309.40 to 309.43, 310.14, 314.1, 314.2, and other applicable state law.

Maintenance or repairs, regardless of the costs; and construction, reconstruction or improvement work estimated to be less than or equal to the current bid threshold, are not subject to the bid thresholds. This work may be accomplished by competitive bids, competitive quotes, city or county forces, or informal methods in accordance with city or county policies.

Vertical infrastructure
If the estimated cost of the public improvement exceeds the current bid threshold, follow the competitive bid process in Iowa Code section 26.3 through 26.13.

If the estimated cost of the public improvement is less than the current bid threshold, but more than the current competitive quote threshold, follow the competitive quotation process in Iowa Code 26.14 and 761 Iowa Administrative Code Chapter 180.

If the estimated cost of the public improvement is less than or equal to the competitive quote threshold, the work may be accomplished by city or county forces, or by informal methods in accordance with city or county policies.

Maintenance or repairs may be performed by city or county forces and are not subject to the bid or quote thresholds, regardless of the estimated costs. However, if the work cannot be accomplished by city or county forces, the city or county must follow either the competitive bid or competitive quote process, as applicable, based on the estimated cost of the work, as described above.


Bid and quote thresholds

Iowa Code Section 314.1B establishes horizontal and vertical bid threshold subcommittees that meet at least every other year to adjust the bid and quote thresholds for city and county projects. These thresholds become effective on Jan. 1 of the year following the year in which the adjustment is made. The table below shows the currently effective and previous bid and quote thresholds.

Year Effective

Threshold

Horizontal Infrastructure

Vertical Infrastructure

Cities

Counties

Cities or other governmental entities

Counties

< 50,000 pop.

> 50,000 pop.

< 50,000 pop.

> 50,000 pop.
2015

Competitive bid

$50,000

$72,000

$93,000

$135,000

$135,000

$135,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

$55,000

$75,000

$100,000

2014

Competitive bid

$49,000

$70,000

$91,000

$130,000

$130,000

$130,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

$50,000

$72,000

$94,000

2013

Competitive bid

$49,000

$70,000

$91,000

$130,000

$130,000

$130,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

$50,000

$72,000

$94,000

2012

Competitive bid

$47,000

$67,000

$87,000

$125,000

$125,000

$125,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

$48,000

$69,000

$91,000

2011

Competitive bid

$47,000

$67,000

$87,000

$100,000

$100,000

$100,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

$46,000

$67,000

$88,000

2010

Competitive bid

$48,000

$69,000

$90,000

$100,000

$100,000

$100,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

$45,000

$65,000

$85,000

2009

Competitive bid

$45,000

$65,000

$85,000

$100,000

$100,000

$100,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

$45,000

$65,000

$85,000

2007

Competitive bid

$40,000

$57,000

$75,000

$100,000

$100,000

$100,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

$40,000

$57,000

$75,000

2005

Competitive bid

$36,000

$51,000

$67,000

$25,000

$25,000

$50,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

2003

Competitive bid

$35,000

$50,000

$65,000

$25,000

$25,000

$50,000

Competitive quote

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A


Notes:
  • The thresholds shown above apply to construction, reconstruction, or improvement projects. Repair or maintenance projects are not subject to these thresholds.
  • Competitive quote procedures are not required for horizontal infrastructure.
  • Competitive quote procedures for vertical infrastructure were not implemented until Jan 1, 2007.

Definitions