Purchasing and Contracts

Purchasing And Contracts

Cabarrus County’s Purchasing and Contracting division strives for efficiency.  They ensure the cost effective, efficient and timely procurement of goods and services.

All purchasing activities are governed by NC General Statutes. The intent of the program is to ensure the taxpayer. Taxpayers need to know they receive full value for each dollar of public funds spent. Procedures conform to open, ethical and sound procurement policies and practices. Qualified suppliers are invited to compete for the County’s business. The County purchases a variety of goods and services.

Cabarrus uses both decentralized and centralized procurement operations when obtaining goods and services. The County primarily uses procurement cards and purchase order (POs). They use these for supplies, equipment and materials and contracts. The County uses contracts for construction and services (consultants, architects and engineers, security, medical services, etc.).

Purchasing Policies

We want to achieve fair and equitable competition and maintain purchasing process integrity. Therefore, vendor discussions with County personnel should be coordinated through the purchasing agent. Especially when discussing bids or quotes. 

Responding to Requests for Quote (RFQ), Requests for Proposal (RFP) and Invitation to Bid (IFB)

Invitation for Bid, Request for Proposal or Request for Qualifications documents are thorough. They provide all the necessary instructions and a complete description of the requirement. Specifications and terms and conditions enable appropriate preparation of a response. Each responding vendor must carefully read and understand the documents. For direct questions about bid documents contact the purchasing agent or their designee.

Bid Evaluation, Award, Performance and Payment

The County opens responses to RFQ, RFP and IFB at the specific time and place cited in the instructions. Bids delivered after the specified time are not considered for evaluation. Upon opening, bid documents and information are public record. The purchasing agent may contact vendors at his/her discretion. The agent may do this for clarifications necessary for proper evaluation.

Generally, awards for purchases valued at less than $90,000 are made by the purchasing agent. Awards for purchases valued at more than $90,000 are presented to the Board of Commissioners. Applicable sales and use tax gets added to invoices as a separate line item. Payment terms are normally “net 30 days.”

County departments contact vendors directly to resolve dissatisfaction. This dissatisfaction can be with product, warranty or service performance. Vendors should act responsibly to quickly resolve legitimate complaints. If not, they may be removed from contracts.

Address vendor protests regarding contract awards to the purchasing agent in writing.

Marketing Your Products and Services

Prospective vendors should email the purchasing agent. Include specifications of the items and services provided by their company. If a vendor feels the need to make personal contact, appointments are preferred. Sales contacts are Tuesday and Thursday, between 9-11 am and 2-4 pm. Late arrival for a scheduled appointment may result in a reschedule.

Gifts And Favors From Vendors

NCGS 133-32 addresses the legal implications of governmental employees accepting gifts and favors.

Briefly summarized, this statute states it is unlawful for any vendor who has:

  • a current contract with a governmental agency
  • has performed under such a contract within the past year
  • anticipates bidding on such a contract in the future

to offer gifts or favors to any employee of a governmental agency who is responsible for:

  • preparing plans
  • specifications or estimates for public contracts
  • awarding or administering such contracts
  • inspecting or supervising construction

It is also unlawful for a governmental employee to receive or accept such gifts or favors.

Environmentally Preferred Purchasing

The purchasing decisions of our employees and contractors affect the environment. Our goal is to reduce the adverse environmental impact of our purchasing decisions. We buy goods/services from manufacturers and vendors who share our environmental commitment.

Cabarrus remains fiscally responsible by:

  • including environmental considerations in our purchasing decisions
  • maintaining traditional concerns with price, performance and availability
  • promoting practices that improve public health and safety
  • promoting practices that reduce pollution and conserve natural resources