102.01  Prequalification of Bidders.  A Bidder must be prequalified by the Department according to ORC Chapter 5525 and the rules and regulations governing prequalification in order to submit a Bid.  Upon request, the Department will provide a prequalification application, applicable rules and regulations, and other relevant information.  For prospective Bidders that are not yet prequalified, furnish the Department with a properly completed prequalification application at least 30 days before the date specified for the receipt of Bids.  The prequalification certificate is the Bidder’s license to Bid and perform construction for the Department.

For foreign Contractors, refer to ORC 5525.18 and Ohio Administrative Rule 5501:2-3-07.

102.02  Contents of Bid Documents.  Use the Proposal to prepare and submit Bids for the Work.  Upon request, the Department will provide Bid Documents that include or reference the following:

A.      Location and description of the Project.

B.      Estimate of quantities and description of the Work.

C.      Time to complete the Work.

D.      Amount of the Proposal Guaranty.

E.      Department’s deadline for receiving a completed Bid.

F.      Schedule of contract items.

G.      Standard Specifications, Special Provisions, Supplemental Specifications, and the Plans.

H.     Proposal.

102.03  Issuance of Proposals.

A.      General.  Upon request, the Department will provide applicable rates and other relevant information for obtaining bidding information and submitting a Bid.

B.      Department Will Not Issue.  The Department may refuse to sell or issue Bid Documents to a prospective Bidder for any of the following reasons:

1.      The prospective Bidder owes the Department for previously issued plans.

2.      The prospective Bidder has defaulted on previous contracts.

3.      The prospective Bidder is debarred from bidding on and receiving Department contracts.

4.      The prospective Bidder is currently in the debarment process.

102.04  Interpretation of Quantities in Proposal.  The quantities in the Bid Documents are approximate and the Department uses them for the comparison of Bids only.

The Department will only pay the Contractor for the actual quantities of Work performed and accepted according to the Contract Documents.  The Department may increase, decrease, or omit the scheduled quantities of Work as provided in 109.04 without invalidating the Bid prices.

102.05  Examination of Bid Documents and Project Site  and Submission of Prebid Questions.  Carefully examine the Bid Documents and perform a reasonable site investigation before submitting a Bid.  Submitting a Bid is an affirmative statement that the Bidder has investigated the Project site and is satisfied as to the character, quality, quantities, and the conditions to be encountered in performing the Work.  A reasonable site investigation includes investigating the Project site, borrow sites, hauling routes, and all other locations related to the performance of the Work.

When available, the Department will include in the Contract Documents or provide for the Bidder’s review at the Department’s offices or website, one or more of the following:

A.      Record drawings.

B.      Available information relative to subsurface exploration, borings, soundings, water levels, elevations, or profiles.

C.      The results of other preliminary investigations.

A reasonable site investigation includes a review of these documents. 

Should a question arise at any time during the examination of Bid Documents or investigation of the site the Bidder may seek clarification by submitting a Prebid Question.  Submit all Prebid Questions in writing via the Department’s website.  The Department will post a response on its website to all questions submitted before a deadline of 10:00 am four working days prior to the public opening of Bids.  Responses to Prebid Questions posted on the Department’s website are not  revisions to the Bidding Documents and are not binding. The Department is not obligated to respond to, or otherwise act upon, a Prebid Question submitted after this deadline, but reserves the right to act upon any information received.      

102.06  Preparation of Bids.  Prepare a Bid according to this subsection and the requirements found in the Bid Documents.  Properly complete the Expedite file and submit it using the software specified in the Bid Documents rather than completing it by handwriting, typing, or using unauthorized computer-generated forms.

Provide a unit price for each item listed in the Proposal.  Calculate and place the products for the respective unit prices and quantities in the “Bid Amount” column.  For a lump sum item, place the same price in the “Unit Price” column and in the “Bid Amount” column pertaining to that item.  Indicate the total Bid amount by adding the values entered in the “Bid Amount” column for the listed items.  Submit the Expedite file using the software specified in the Bid Documents.

Properly execute the Proposal by completing the miscellaneous section and attaching the required signatures in the space provided in the Expedite file.



The individual or a duly authorized agent.


A partner or a duly authorized agent.

Joint Venture

A member or a duly authorized agent of at least one of the joint venture firms.


An authorized officer or duly authorized agent of the corporation.  Also, show the name of the state chartering the corporation and affix the corporate seal.

Limited Liability Company

A manager, a member, or a duly authorized agent.


102.07  Duty to Notify of Errors in Bid Documents.  Notify the Department of errors and omissions in the Bid Documents.  Make notification by submitting a question in the manner described in 102.05.  The Contractor’s duty to disclose errors and omissions is not only a bidding requirement but is also a legal requirement that cannot be ignored. 

Failure to provide the required notification prior to the opening of bids shall constitute a waiver by the Contractor and does not obligate the Department for any costs based upon any apparent or patent ambiguity arising from insufficient data or obvious errors in the Bid documents.  Knowingly withholding information regarding an error or omission in the Bid Documents, or intentionally misrepresenting an item of Work for financial or competitive gain may result in civil or criminal penalties in excess of the value of the item bid.

102.08  Unbalanced Bidding.  Bid all items correctly and price each quantity as indicated in the Bid Documents.  The Department will reject a Mathematically Unbalanced Bid if the Bid is also Materially Unbalanced.  A Mathematically Unbalanced Bid is a Bid containing lump sum or unit price items that do not include reasonable labor, equipment, and material costs plus a reasonable proportionate share of the Bidder’s overhead costs, other indirect costs, and anticipated profit.  A Materially Unbalanced Bid is when the Department determines that an award to the Bidder submitting a Mathematically Unbalanced Bid will not result in the lowest ultimate cost to the Department.

102.09  Proposal Guaranty.  The Department will reject a Bid submitted without a Proposal Guaranty in the amount designated and payable to the Director.  Submit the required Proposal Guaranty in one of the following forms:

A.      Properly executed project Bid bond submitted on the Department’s form.

B.      Properly executed electronic bid transfer to the Department's account.

C.      Certified check drawn on the account of the Bidder submitting the Bid.

D.      Cashier’s check.

E.      Properly executed electronic project Bid bond submitted using the software specified in the Bid Documents.

When submitting a Bid bond, ensure that the Surety is licensed to do business in the State.

If the Department invites alternate Bids and the Bidder elects to Bid more than one alternate, the Bidder may submit one Proposal Guaranty in the amount required for a single alternate.  The Proposal Guaranty covers each individual Bid.

If the Department invites combined Bids and the Bidder elects to Bid only on one package, then the Bidder must submit only one Proposal Guaranty.  If the Bidder bids on the combined Bid package, the Bidder must submit a Proposal Guaranty in the amount required for the combined Bid.  The combined Proposal Guaranty covers each individual Bid.

102.10  Delivery of Bid.   Unless otherwise indicated in the Proposal, all Bids must be submitted using the electronic Bid submission software specified in the Proposal.  The Department will accept Bids until the time and date designated in the Notice to Bidders.  The Department will return Bids received after the designated time to the Bidders unopened. The Department will return all Bids not prepared and submitted in accordance with the Proposal.

102.11  Withdrawal of Bids.  After Bids are opened, ORC 5525.01 requires that a Bidder identify a mistake in its Bid within 48 hours of the Bid opening.  After Bids are opened the Bidder must provide a written request to withdraw a Bid already filed with the Department.  Any Bidder for whom a request to withdraw its Bid is approved by the Department will not be permitted to participate in any manner in a contract awarded for that project for which the Bid was withdrawn. 

102.12  Combination Proposals.  The Department may elect to issue Bid Documents for projects in combination or separately, so that Bids may be submitted either on the combination or on separate units of the combination.  The Department reserves the right to make awards on combination Bids or separate Bids to the best advantage of the Department.  The Department will not consider combination Bids, other than those it specifically identifies in the Bid Documents.  The Department will write separate Contracts for each individual Project included in the combination.

102.13  Public Opening of Bids.  The Department will publicly open Bids at the time and place indicated in the notice to Contractors.  The Department will announce the total Bid amount for each Bid.

Bidders or their authorized agent and other interested persons are invited to the opening.

The Department may postpone the receipt of Bid time or the opening of Bids time.  If the Department changes the hour or the date of the receipt of Bids or the opening of Bids, it will issue an addendum or public notice to notify prospective Bidders.

102.14  Disqualification of Bidders.  The Department will declare a Bid non-responsive and ineligible for award when any of the following occur:

A.      The Bidder lacks sufficient prequalification work types or dollars to be eligible for award.

B.      The Bidder fails to furnish the required Proposal Guaranty in the proper form and amount.

C.      The Bid contains unauthorized alterations or omissions.

D.      The Bid contains conditions or qualifications not provided for in the Bid Documents.

E.      The Proposal is not prepared as specified.

F.      A single entity, under the same name or different names, or affiliated entities submits more than one Bid for the same Project.

G.      The Bidder fails to submit a unit price for each contract item listed, except for lump sum items where the Bidder may show a price in the “Bid Amount” column for that item.

H.     The Bidder fails to submit a lump sum price where required.

I.       The Bidder fails to submit a complete Expedite file using the software specified in the Proposal.

J.       The Bidder is debarred from submitting Bids.

K.      The Bidder has defaulted, has had a Contract terminated for cause by the Department, has either agreed not to Bid or has had debarment proceedings initiated against the Bidder’s company and/or its key personnel.

L.      The Bidder submits its Bid or Proposal Guaranty on forms other than those provided by the Department.

M.     The Bidder fails to properly complete the supplemental questionnaire section of the Expedite file.

N.      The Bidder submits a Materially Unbalanced Bid as defined by 102.08.

O.      The Bidder fails to acknowledge addenda.

P.      The Department finds evidence of collusion.

Q.      Any other omission, error, or act that, in the judgment of the Department, renders the Bidder’s bid non-responsive.

102.15   Material Guaranty.  Before any Contract is awarded, the Department may require the Bidder to furnish a complete statement of the origin, composition, and manufacture of any or all Materials to be used in the construction of the Work together with samples.  The Department may test the samples as specified in these Specifications to determine their quality and fitness for the Work.

102.16  Certificate of Compliance with Affirmative Action Programs.  Before any Contract is awarded, the Department will require the Bidder to furnish a valid Certificate of Compliance with Affirmative Action Programs, issued by the State EEO Coordinator dated prior to the date fixed for the opening of bids.

102.17  Drug-Free Safety Program.  During the life of this project, the Contractor and all its Subcontractors, that provide labor on the Project site, must be enrolled in and remain in good standing in the Ohio Bureau of Worker’s Compensation (“OBWC”) Drug-Free Safety Program (“DFSP”) or a comparable program approved by the OBWC.

In addition to being enrolled in and in good standing in an OBWC-approved DFSP or a comparable program approved by the OBWC, the Department requires each Contractor and Subcontractor that provides labor, to subject its employees who perform labor on the project site to random drug testing of 5 percent of its employees. The random drug testing percentage must also include the on-site supervisors of the Contractors and Subcontractors. Upon request, the Contractor and Subcontractor shall provide evidence of required testing to the Department.

Each Subcontractor shall require all lower-tier Subcontractors that provides labor on the project site with whom the Subcontractor is in contract for the Work to be enrolled in and be in good standing in the OBWC-approved DFSP prior to a lower-tier Subcontractor providing labor at the Site.

The Department will declare a bid non-responsive and ineligible for award if the Contractor is not enrolled and in good standing in the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation’s Drug-Free Safety Program (DFSP) Discount Program or a similar program approved by the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation within 8 days of the bid opening. Furthermore, the Department will deny all requests to sublet when the subcontractor does not comply with the provisions of this section. 

Failure of the Contractor to require a Subcontractor to be enrolled in and be in good standing in the an OBWC-approved DFSP prior to the time that the Subcontractor provides labor at the Site, shall result in the Contractor being found in breach of the Contract and that breach shall be used in the responsibility analysis of that Contractor or the Subcontractor who was not enrolled in a program for future contracts with the State for five years after the date of the breach.