The Architect of the Capitol (AOC) utilizes a variety of procurement methods to obtain competition for goods and services.
GSA Federal Supply Schedule Contracts
One of the methods used by the AOC for acquiring goods and services is from vendors that have been awarded a General Services Administration Federal Supply Schedule (FSS) contract. Many of the supplies and services needed by the AOC are available on FSS contracts. The AOC solicits competition among FSS contract holders by using a Request for Quotations. The Request for Quotations must be in writing, if the estimated value of the procurement is expected to exceed $5,000.
Purchase Card Transactions
At the AOC, acquisitions of $5,000 or less are generally not forwarded to the Acquisition and Material Management Division, but are bought by authorized non-procurement personnel through use of the Government-wide commercial purchase card. Most Jurisdictions or Organizations within the AOC have one or more cardholders with authority up to $2,500 or $5,000, with selected cardholders having a higher dollar authority for supplies only.
Small Purchase Procedures
For requirements estimated at $100,000 or less that are not on a government contract, the Acquisition and Material Management Division generally uses simplified acquisition procedures. These procedures are less structured than those in sealed bidding or negotiated procurements. Competition to the maximum extent practicable is required, with solicitation of at least three sources. The sources solicited must be in the industry in which the supplies or services are customarily found. The AOC does have special authority to use Small Purchase procedures for procurements of any dollar amount that are related to the security of the Capitol complex.
For the convenience of our vendors, the AOC is providing the clauses and provisions applicable to AOC small purchases on this web site for informational purposes only. Additionally, any clauses and provisions accompanying an AOC purchase order or request for quotation take precedence over the clauses and provisions provided herein: Clauses and Provisions Applicable to Small Purchases and Requests for Quotations.
Sealed Bidding and Negotiated Procedures
For procurements estimated to exceed $100,000, sealed bidding or negotiated procedures are used. These are more formal and structured than Small Purchase procedures. These procurements must (with limited exception) be competed using procedures that provide for full and open competition, which means that all responsible sources are permitted to compete.
Under sealed bidding procedures, an Invitation for Bid (IFB) is issued inviting interested companies to compete by submitting a sealed bid. Bids are publicly opened at a date and time specified in the IFB. The bids are evaluated without discussions and contract award is made to the responsible bidder whose bid, conforming to the IFB, is the most advantageous to the government, considering only price and the price-related factors included in the IFB.
Under these procedures, a Request for Proposal (RFP) is issued inviting interested companies to submit proposals by a specified date. Unlike bids submitted in sealed bidding, proposals submitted for negotiation are not publicly opened. Proposals received are evaluated based on factors and subfactors contained in the solicitation. Award may be made without discussions if the government includes a notice in the solicitation stating its intent to evaluate proposals and make award without discussions. If discussions are held, offerors may be given the opportunity to revise price, schedule, technical requirements, or other contractual terms and conditions in their offer. After completion of all discussions and receipt of final proposal revisions, award is made to the responsible offeror whose offer is the most advantageous to the government considering price and the other factors specified in the solicitation.