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Vendor Responsibility Information for State Agencies

Vendor Responsibility Documentation Requirements

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Procurement solicitations

The State contracting entity must decide when in its procurement process to require responses to responsibility questions, whether from all vendors as part of their bid or proposal submission, or from only the vendor(s) selected for award. In developing its procurement schedule, a contracting entity should take into account the time needed for its vendor responsibility review process.

OSC recommends that language stating the requirement for award of State contracts only to responsive and responsible vendors appear in all solicitations, with notice that prospective awardees will be required to provide vendor responsibility information if they are selected for a contract valued at $100,000 or more, and a requirement that bidders/proposers must certify the accuracy of the information they provide.

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Procurement records

For contract transactions requiring vendor responsibility documentation, there are certain required components to the procurement record:

  • The agency must certify in the procurement record that it has undertaken an affirmative review and has reasonable assurance that the proposed contractor is responsible;
  • When completing the Vendor Responsibility Profile, the agency must document the basis for its responsibility determination, including any information compiled or used in arriving at the conclusion, and note if the questionnaire was filed online; and
  • If a paper questionnaire was used, the agency must include the completed questionnaire.

Certain transactions are exempt from some of these requirements (see General FAQs - Entities exempt from vendor responsibility documentation requirements and Types of Transactions and Vendors Requiring a Vendor Responsibility Review).

Additionally, if a proposed contractor is passed over due to non-responsibility, the State contracting entity must document on the Vendor Responsibility Profile the basis for its determination, the process followed, and must indicate that the vendor completed its questionnaire using the VendRep System, or include a copy of the paper questionnaire for the vendor found non-responsible. In the event a State contracting entity finds a vendor non-responsible, the contracting entity must provide the vendor with due process, including written notice detailing exact reasons for the preliminary determination of non-responsibility and an opportunity to be heard before the determination is final.

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Authorized signatories

State contracting entity staff can be identified as authorized signatories. Form AC1782s can be used to designate contracting entity representatives authorized to sign the Agency Responsibility Certification. The form should be completed to indicate, in the column labeled "Restrictions," that the person is authorized only for the agency certification of vendor responsibility.

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Multiple contract awards

Responsibility determinations must be made individually on each vendor, and the required vendor responsibility documentation (Agency Responsibility Certification, Vendor Responsibility Profile, questionnaire, if applicable, and related documentation) must be submitted to OSC with each contract. A State contracting entity can, however, choose to include copies, rather than original signatures, of the Agency Responsibility Certification with each contract.

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Re-use of Vendor Responsibility Profile

Generally, each contract submitted to OSC for approval must include the Agency Responsibility Certification and vendor responsibility documentation, including a Vendor Responsibility Profile and questionnaire, if applicable. This is consistent with the concept that a responsibility determination is made on a case-by-case basis. In the case of multiple contracts exceeding $100,000 with the same vendor, the agency can "re-use" the Vendor Responsibility Profile if the agency’s previous vendor responsibility analysis was completed recently and there are no changes in the vendor’s responses or the agency’s analysis of the relevant information. In reusing a Profile, the agency must indicate if the vendor filed the questionnaire online or must include a Statement of No Change by the vendor (accompanied by a copy of the previously submitted paper questionnaire), and re-submit the Vendor Responsibility Profile, with a new Agency Responsibility Certification.

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Alternative formats for the Vendor Responsibility Profile

OSC will consider alternative formats for the Vendor Responsibility Profile, if all of the required information, including the Agency Responsibility Certification, is included. For approval of alternative formats, contact the OSC Help Desk via email at Contact Us .