The Commissioners establish a Contractor Responsibility Policy and Responsible Contractor Certification program. The program is incorporated into the Commission’s current Capital Improvement Program, a 15-year plan aimed at improving driving conditions and reducing congestion on the Commission’s bridges and access roadways.
The program consists of two elements:
- Responsible contractor provisions that will be attached to specifications for capital construction projects. Read Full Policy
- A contractor responsibility certification form that would be filled out by prospective contractors bidding on a project. Download Certification
The new procedure will help ensure that prospective contractors have the requisite quality, fitness and capacity to fulfill a contract. The initiative will further enhance the Commission’s efforts at ensuring that its contracts are awarded to reputable and qualified companies.
Responsible Contractors Policy
In order to protect the substantial investment the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission has made, and continues to make, in the maintenance, improvement and expansion of its infrastructure, it is the goal of the Commission to ensure that all contracts to perform work for the Commission are awarded to reputable companies, which have the qualifications, resources and personnel required successfully to perform the work within the scope of a given contract. Successful performance of a contract includes, not only timely completion of the subject work at the high standards of quality expected by the Commission, but also a demonstrated commitment by a contractor to education and training in the construction trades, and a track record of responsible conduct in the implementation of public works projects.
In order to determine reasonably whether a contractor has met these criteria, and in order for a contractor to understand, and have the ability to meet the Commission’s expectations, the Commission has authorized, and is implementing on a pilot basis, the requirement for a Contractor Responsibility Certification (the “Certification”) in a form designated by the Commission to be executed by each bidder proposing to perform a project designated for the pilot program. The Certification shall be executed on behalf of the contractor by an individual that is knowledgeable of the matters contained therein and capable of binding the contractor legally. A contractor that is identified as the apparent lowest responsible bidder shall, within 10 days of receipt of a Notice of Intent to Award the Contract, also provide the Certification from all subcontractors where the value of the subcontract is $250,000 or more.
The Certification sets forth certain pre-established, and clearly defined minimum standards relating to contractor responsibility, including technical qualifications, competency, experience, resources, safety, past performance, compliance with law and business integrity.
The Certification, along with this explanatory statement, will be issued as a supplementary general condition to the specifications attendant to each designated pilot project. When so incorporated into the specifications, the provisions hereof and the Certification become a mandatory requirement. Failure to provide an executed Certification will result in the contractor not being pre-qualified for submission of a bid to perform the designated project. Any willful and material misrepresentation or omission concerning the information requested herein may result in the Commission exercising any and all available remedies including, but not limited to, debarment from future projects for a designated period of time, and termination of the contractor from performance of the project if discovered after the award of the contract and commencement of performance. A “willful” misrepresentation or omission shall mean one that is made intentionally or with reckless disregard for the truth.
For purposes of the performance and payment bonds provided by the contractor, any such termination will be deemed the result of a default by the Contractor of a material provision of the contract between the Commission and the contractor.
The Commission recognizes that the requirement of the Certification is new and that contractors may have questions concerning compliance with its terms. In order to provide all contractors a full and fair opportunity to obtain pre-qualification to bid on designated projects this statement and the accompanying Certification shall be published and made available to contractors on the Commission website at least 45 days prior to the first inclusion of the Certification requirement in the specifications for an invitation to bid for a particular project. The Commission shall schedule a meeting of interested contractors prior to the first inclusion of the Certification requirement in project specifications to answer any questions. It is the contractor’s responsibility to be fully apprised of all information concerning the Certification. Submission of an executed Certification shall constitute representation by the Contractor that it has fully investigated and is aware of all such information.
The requirement of a Certification in no way limits the Commission’s ability to consider other relevant factors in determining contractor responsibility. The Commission reserves the right to explore, and include, additional measures for determining a contractor’s responsibility, or to waive any provision of the Certification if the Commission deems there to be a compelling reason to do so. The Commission also reserves the right to waive any provision of the Certification in particular instances to promote diversity among the businesses proposing to bid on Commission contracts. As always, the Commission also has the right to reject all bids on a particular project if the Commission deems it to be in its best interest to do so.
The Certification requirements shall only apply to contracts concerning which the anticipated budget exceeds one million dollars. The Certification requirements do not apply to contracts for professional services. The Certification requirements also do not apply to contracts for the purchase of goods or materials regardless of the dollar amount of the contract. Subcontractors who are solely materialmen and are not providing craft or trade labor on the project, are not required to submit a certification regardless of the dollar value of the subcontract. The invitation to bid shall specify whether or not a Certification is required to be submitted with that bid.
The contractor shall receive notice from the Commission if, for any reason, the Commission deems the contractor’s certification to be deficient, or if information available to the Commission leads the Commission to conclude that a material fact certified by the contractor is incomplete or incorrect. Otherwise, the contractor may assume the Certification is accepted. In the event that a Certification is rejected or is apparently deficient, the Commission may, but is not required to, allow the contractor an opportunity to explain the deficiency in writing. No formal hearing will be provided.
Submission of a Certification, where applicable, is solely a pre-qualification requirement to submit a bid. It is the practice of the Commission, consistent with applicable law in both the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the State of New Jersey, to award contracts for construction services to the lowest bid submitted by a responsible contractor.