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Fee for solicitation / builder's exchanges
By msutherland on Tuesday, March 20, 2001 - 05:23 pm:

A builder's exchange has stated that no federal agency has ever charged a builder's exchange for a copy of construction plans. Just wondering if that is the case. The FAR does not differentiate between builder's exchanges and other firms requesting a solicitation.

By joel hoffman on Tuesday, March 20, 2001 - 06:06 pm:

Why would you want to charge someone like the "Dodge Room" for plans and specs? They are providing you a necessary service! If you use CD-Rom's for your plans and specifications, they are very low cost per copy. If your organization doesn't, you should try using them. You can burn your own, now, instead of having a copy firm do it for you. Just a suggestion. Happy Sails! Joel Hoffman

By joel hoffman on Tuesday, March 20, 2001 - 09:15 pm:

Anonymous, the FAR doesn't REQUIRE that you charge trade associations for a copy of the solicitation. I read it as encouraging the widest dissemination possible. The more the competition, the better. Am I missing something, here? Happy Sails! Joel Hoffman

"FAR 36.211 Distribution of advance notices and solicitations.

Advance notices and solicitations should be distributed to reach as many prospective offerors as practicable. Contracting officers may send notices and solicitations to organizations that maintain, without charge to the public, display rooms for the benefit of prospective offerors, subcontractors, and material suppliers.

If requested by such organizations, this may be done for all or a stated class of construction projects on an annual or semiannual basis. Contracting officers may determine the geographical extent of distribution of advance notices and solicitations on a case-by-case basis."

"FAR 5.101 Methods of disseminating information.

(b) In addition, one or more of the following methods may be used:

2) Assisting local trade associations in disseminating information to their members."

"FAR 5.102 Availability of solicitations.
(a) The contracting officer shall--

(1) Maintain a reasonable number of copies of solicitations publicized in the CBD, including specifications and other pertinent information (upon request, potential sources not initially solicited shall be mailed or provided copies of solicitations, if available);

(2) Provide copies of a solicitation issued under other than full and open competition to firms requesting copies that were not initially solicited, but only after advising the requester of the determination to limit the solicitation to a specified firm or firms as authorized under Part 6;

(3) Provide copies on a "first-come-first-served" basis, for pickup at the contracting office, to publishers, trade associations, information services, and other members of the public having a legitimate interest (for construction, see 36.211); and

(4) In addition to the methods of disseminating proposed contract information in 5.101(a) and (b), provide, upon request to small business concerns, as required by 15 U.S.C. 637(b)--

(i) A copy of the solicitation and specifications. In the case of solicitations disseminated by electronic data interchange, solicitations may be furnished directly to the electronic address of the small business concern;

(ii) The name and telephone number of an employee of the contracting office to answer questions on the solicitation; and

(iii) Adequate citations to each applicable major Federal law or agency rule with which small business concerns must comply in performing the contract.

(5) Retain a copy of the solicitation and other documents for review by and duplication for those requesting copies after the initial number of copies is exhausted.

(6) Agencies MAY require payment of a fee, not exceeding the actual cost of duplication, for a copy of the solicitation documents. (Emphasis added)

(7) If electronic commerce is employed in the solicitation process, availability of the solicitation may be limited to the electronic medium. "

By joel hoffman on Tuesday, March 20, 2001 - 09:17 pm:

Sorry I referred to you as "Anonymous", "M." Thanks for asking the question, here. Happy Sails! joel