Generally, yes. However there have been occasions where the lowest bidder has been unable to produce evidence of proper insurance or bonding capacity which enables the County to deem the lowest bidder "non-responsive" and, under California Public Contract law, allows the County to award to the next lowest bidder.
Because of the decrease in construction projects bidding throughout our State, we get requests from all over California from prime bidders, and even subcontractors, to be put on a bidder's list. It has become impossible to accommodate this request. Even on a local level, sending a set of plans and specifications to anyone holding the required license is very costly. Since the cost of the reproducing of plans and specifications, as well as mailing or UPS charges are directly charged to the project funds, we limit the number we run for distribution. Since the Construction Services Division for the County of Kern does not charge a plan deposit or fee, this further inhibits an open distribution policy.
Bid results are posted in several different ways. First, there is a recorded message center where bid results can be obtained after 3:00 p.m. on the day of the bid opening. This method can be accessed by calling (661) 868-3065. Next, all plan rooms that received a copy of plans and specifications are also notified of the bid results by 3:00 p.m., the day of the bid. Finally, there are plans underway to posting the results on the Internet. Every effort is made to include a subcontractor listing submitted by the first and second apparent low bidders.
You must hold the required license for the work to be performed in order to get a set of plans and specifications and submit a bid on any project. A request to be included as a bidder on a given project must be received verbally by calling (661) 868-3044, or by fax at (661) 868-3084. Please include your contractors license number as this information will be verified.
The County of Kern does have a limited scope local vendor preference but this deals primarily with commodities or purchased goods and materials. The County has excluded construction projects from this program due to the complexity of enacting a review and enforcement policy that would be fair and not subject to legal challenge.
Yes, an active list is maintained as plans are distributed to interested parties. This list is available by calling (661) 868-3044. There are plans to make this list available on the Internet. The listing includes the prime contractor's name, address, phone and fax number.
The contractor license classifications do vary from job to job and do not necessarily require a "B" license. Each project usually is advertised for at least 10 days and specific licensing requirements are outlined in each individual project's plans and specifications.