PURPOSE

The SSB Procurement Policy establishes both policy and guidance to provide an efficient and effective way to maximize the quality, timeliness, and cost-effectiveness of delivering needed goods and services toward fulfilment of the SSB’s mission.

APPLICATION

This procurement policy applies to all contracts for the procurement of supplies, services, and construction entered into by the SSB after the effective date of this Policy. The term “procurement”, as used in this Policy includes both contracts and modifications (including change orders) for construction or services, as well as purchase, lease, or rental of supplies and equipment

CONTRACTING AUTHORITY

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the SSB may delegate to The SSB Director Finance broad authority to manage The SSB contracting functions. Contracts, agreements and other transactions may be approved on behalf of The SSB as follows:

  • Procurements up to $100,000.00 Chief Executive Officer or Chief Executive Officer’s Designee
  • Procurements between $100,000. 01 Chief Executive Officer and Board and $250,000.00 Chairperson
  • Procurements over $250, 000.01 Board of Directors (budget approval constitutes procurement approval; Chief Executive Officer and Chairperson may execute transaction)

 
Provided that all procurements of all goods and services exceeding $100,000.00 must be put to tender.

TENDER COMMITTEE

A Tender Committee shall be established and shall consist of the Social Security Board’s Internal Auditor, the Director Finance and the Chief Executive Officer.

All Tenders are to be addressed to the Social Security Board through the Chief Executive Officer.

All Tenders will be opened by the Tender Committee on a designated date set by the Tender Committee. A copy of the Minutes of the meeting showing the particulars of all the documents submitted by the Tenders will be kept for proper documentation.

Any additional information required will be requested by the Finance Director.

The recommendations of the Tender Committee are to be submitted to the Social Security Board for approval before the contract is awarded.

DISCLOSURE OF INFORMATION

Source selection information shall not be disclosed to or discussed with anyone other than SSB Directors, Personnel and Consultants on a need to know basis.

ORGANIZATIONAL CONFLICTS OF INTEREST

The policy of SSB is to avoid awarding contracts to contractors that have unacceptable organization conflicts of interest. An organizational conflict of interest means that because of activities or relationships with other persons, a person is unable or potentially unable to render impartial assistance to the SSB or the person’s objectivity in performing the contract work is or might be impaired, or the person has an unfair competitive advantage.

Persons with an actual or potential organization conflict of interest should be instructed to contact SSB at the earliest possible time to evaluate whether any conflicts of interest can be avoided or mitigated. The SSB will resolve organizational conflict of interest issues on a case-by-case basis. When necessary to further the interest of SSB, an actual or potential conflict may be waived or mitigated at the SSB’s discretion. As used herein, the term “person” includes any legal entity including a partnership, corporation, or association.


  • Any SSB employee or Board member who has a real or apparent conflict of interest may be unable to render impartial, technically sound, and objective assistance, advice, or decisions regarding procurement. Any employee or Board member who has a real or apparent conflict of interest must withdraw from participation in the procurement process.

    Unless an employee involved in a procurement decision receives prior authorization, that employee should not participate if the result is likely to affect the financial interests of his or her household, or if a reasonable person with knowledge of the relevant facts would question the employee’s impartiality in the matter. Non-government members of evaluation teams are to be removed when they have an apparent conflict, since SSB’s public image, as well as its work force morale and considerations of equity, dictate in favor of treating them exactly as SSB’s employees are treated.

GUIDING PRINCIPLES

The following should be considered in planning for procurements.

Best Value – The SSB’s Policy is to procure products and services from sources that offer the best value to satisfy the SSB’s mission needs. In selecting sources, the preferred method is to compete requirements for products and/or services among two or more sources.

Preference for Commercial Items – Preference should be given to using commercial items whenever possible. Development of a product, and its associated costs and risks, should be avoided unless commercial items capable of meeting SSB’s needs are not available. If developmental items are required, the need should be documented in the procurement plan.


  • Small Business and Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Business – The Director Finance shall identify contracting opportunities for, and shall reach out to, small businesses owned and controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals and small women owned businesses.

    Quality Assurance – For developmental items, the Director Finance should establish quality assurance requirements.

    Single Source Approval – The Director Finance determines whether the procurement should be conducted on a competitive or single source basis. The rationale for the single source procurement should be documented in writing and included in the procurement plan, if a procurement plan is needed. Approval of the procurement plan by the CEO constitutes approval of a single source procurement and no further approval or documentation is necessary.

PROCUREMENT PLANNING

Market Analysis

Market analysis is used to initiate industry involvement, develop and refine the procurement strategy, obtain price information, determine whether commercial items exist, determine the level of competition, identify market practices, or obtain industry comments on requirements. Market analysis may be as simple as a telephone call or as formal as a market survey advertisement to learn of industry capabilities. All market analyses, formal or informal, should be appropriately documented.

PROCUREMENT PLANS

The procurement plan is an important component of the total procurement process. It is an opportunity to evaluate the entire procurement process, so that sound judgments and decision making will facilitate the success of the overall program. The Director Finance determines the type and degree of procurement planning necessary for procurement or a related group of procurements. Consideration should be given to complexity, significance of the procurement, dollar value and schedule requirements. A procurement plan is not required for micro purchases and small purchases.

TYPES OF PROCUREMENT PLANS
  • Written Procurement Plan. For Development and Complex Purchases a written procurement is required.
  • Procurement Strategy Meeting. For Simple Non-Developmental Purchases planning generally can be satisfied through a Procurement Strategy Meeting (“PSM”), which includes representatives of those SSB departments with an interest in the contemplated procurement. Approval of the PSM presentation constitutes approval of the procurement approach. Minutes from a PSM may serve as a written procurement plan.
PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENTS

All procurements expected to exceed $100,000 must be publicly announced over the internet, in newspapers, trade publications or by other means. This requirement does not apply to emergency single source actions, purchases from a qualified vendor list (“QVL”), the exercise of options, or contract changes.

CONTRACTING

Types of Procurements

Micro Purchases. Micro Purchases are purchases costing $5,000 or less.

Small Purchases. Small Purchases are purchases costing $25,000 or less.

Simple Non-Developmental Purchases. Simple Non-Developmental Purchases are purchases of commercially available goods and services costing $250,000 or less, and construction costing $100,000 or less. This method is typically used to acquire commercial products and services, as well as for simple construction projects. Such as products or services are generally routine in nature and purchased on a fixed price basis.

Developmental and Complex Purchases. Developmental and Complex Purchases are purchases of developmental items, commercially available goods and services costing over $250,000, and construction costing over $100,000.

SOURCE SELECTION ON TYPES OF PROCUREMENTS

The Source selection process depends on the type of procurement. Price shall be considered in all selection decisions.


  • Competition is not required for micro purchases. Reasonable efforts should be made to ascertain that the price to be paid is fair and reasonable.

    • Contracting mechanisms. Contracting mechanisms are at the discretion of the Director Finance. Purchases may be made using:
    • cash, provided purchase documents/receipts are included in the file;
    • SSB credit cards, provided purchase documents are included in the file;
    • purchase orders; or
    • other methods when deemed appropriate and properly documented.

  • Some form of Market Analysis should be employed for Small Purchases. Formal competition is limited to obtaining quotes from at least two qualified suppliers. If award is made on other than lowest price, the documentation must reflect why the selected supplier offered the best value.

    • Payment Mechanisms for Small Purchases. Payment mechanisms are at the discretion of the Director Finance. Purchases may be made using purchase orders or other methods when deemed appropriate and properly documented.

  • The SSB may acquire commercial products and services and construction from the competitive market place by using the simplified purchase method described herein and best commercial practices.

    • Planning – Procurement planning should be accomplished for all Simple Non-Developmental Purchases. The level of planning should be dictated by the nature and complexity of the requirement, commercial availability, dollar value, urgency of the requirement and previous procurement history. For all procurements other than construction, planning typically will be accomplished through a Procurement Strategy Meeting(PSM).
    • Market Analysis – Market analysis should be simple and straightforward, and may include information based on personal knowledge of the market, historical purchase information, qualified vendor lists, commercial catalogs, trade journals, newspapers, other professional publications or local telephone directories.
    • Soliciting Sources – The Director Finance should solicit an appropriate number of sources to ensure quality products and services are delivered in a timely manner at a fair and reasonable price. Requirements should be stated in commercial terms generally understood and accepted in the industry.
    • Screening Sources – The Director Finance should determine the appropriate method of screening vendors (e.g., electronic, written or oral requests for information). The Director Finance may also communicate with individual offerors, as appropriate, to address the offeror’s understanding of the requirement, performance capabilities, prices, and other items and conditions.
    • Selection Decision and Award – The contractor shall be selected based on the best value to The SSB, taking into account factors including, but not limited to, price, quality, delivery, warranty, and payment terms. This may be accomplished through establishing specific evaluation criteria with an accompanying evaluation plan and making the selection based on the stating criteria. It also may be accomplished based on written findings that one offeror has proposed the most favorable solution at the most favorable price available in the market. This method used should depend on the complexity, risk, dollar value, and vendors remaining in the final screening process have had an opportunity to submit binding offers.
    • Documentation – The method of selection and rationale for awards and a determination that the price is fair and reasonable shall be documented.
DEVELOPMENTAL AND COMPLEX CONTRACTS

This Section establishes The SSB’s guidance for evaluating and selecting sources for developmental and complex competitive contracts. This process consists of four distinct phases, with the planning phase being the cornerstone. The phases are: planning, screening, selection, and debriefing.


  • Communications with potential offerors should take place throughout the source selection process. During the screening, selection, and debriefing phases of source selection, communications are coordinated with the Director Finance. Communications may start in the planning phase and continue through contract award. All Procurement Information Requests(PIRs) should clearly inform offerors how communications will be handled.

    To ensure that offerors fully understand The SSB’s needs as stated in the PIR, the Board may hold conferences and/or one-on-one meetings with individual offerors. One-on-one communications may continue throughout the process, as required, at the discretion of the Director Finance. Communications with one offeror do not necessitate communications with other offerors, since communications will be offeror-specific, Regardless of the varying level of communications with individual offerors; the Director Finance should ensure that such communications do no afford any offeror an unfair competitive advantage.

    If, after a PIR is released, it is determined that there has been a change in the SSB’s requirement(s), all offerors competing at that stage should be advised of the change(s) and afforded an opportunity to update their submittals accordingly. The Selection Official may waive a requirement in PIR with respect to any offeror specific waiver requests will be considered, and the waiver does not affect a significant requirement that changes the essential character or conditions of the procurement. All determinations relating to changes in requirements, including waiver, will be documented in the evaluation report.


  • A written procurement plan shall be developed for each Developmental and/or Complex procurement.


  • A Procurement Information Request (“PIR”) should be part of the procurement plan. The purpose of the PIR is to obtain information which ultimately will allow The SSB to identify the offeror that provides the best value, make a selection decision, and award the contract. A PIR is a request by The SSB for documentation, information, presentations, proposals, or binding offers. The SSB may make a selection decision after receipt of responses to one PIR, or after a series of PIRs (provided there has been a screening decision after each one) to arrive at the selection decision. If a selection decision is made after one PIR, that PIR should be a Request for Proposal (“RFP”). In general, when multiple PIRs are contemplated, the initial PIR should request only general information, and future PIRs should request successively more specific information. Initial PIRs need not state firm requirements, thus allowing The SSB to convey its needs to offerors in the form of desired features or other appropriate means. However, firm requirements ultimately must be established. Each PIR should contain the following information:
     

    • A statement identifying the purpose of the PIR (e.g., a Screening Request (“SR”) to obtain information, or an RFP to obtain offers);
    • A description of what is needed;
    • A request for specific information from offerors;
    • A closing date stating when submittals must be received in order to be considered or evaluated;
    • If the request is an RFP, it should contain evaluation criteria by which an offer will be evaluated; and
    • A statement informing potential offerors how communications will be conducted during the screening.

  • Screening Request. A Screening Request allows The SSB to determine which offeror(s) are most likely to receive the award, and ultimately which offeror(s) will provide The SSB with the best value. The screening information requested should focus on information that directly relates to the procurement. The following are examples of the types of information that may be requested in a screening request:
     

    • contractor capability statements,
    • contractor quality assurance information,
    • performance experience,
    • samples
    • technical proposals (including oral presentations, if appropriate and practical),
    • commercial pricing information,
    • financial condition information
    • cost or price information, and
    • cost or price proposals.

     
    Request for Proposal. A Request for Proposal (“RFP”) is a request for an offeror to formally commit to provide the products or services required by the procurement under stated terms and conditions. The response to the RFP is a binding offer, which is intended to become a binding contract if/when it is signed by the authorized SSB official. An RFP should not be issued until the requirement is well defined through screening or other means.


  • The Evaluation criteria form the basis on which each offeror’s submissions are to be evaluated. Evaluation criteria should be tailored to the characteristics of a particular requirement. Each PIR shall contain the specific evaluation criteria to be used to evaluate offeror submittals. Establishing the relative importance among criteria is not required but when relative importance is used, the relative order of importance should be disclosed to offerors. Once the criteria have been disclosed to offerors, criteria should not be modified without first notifying offerors competing at that stage of the process and allowing them the opportunity to revise their submissions according. Past performance and experience should be an evaluation criterion in all selection decisions. For software procurements the evaluation criteria should include, whenever appropriate, an evaluation of the maturity of the offeror’s software and maintenance policies.
     

    Evaluation Plan

    An evaluation plan shall be part of the procurement plan. Evaluation plans should be concise and tailored to the specific needs of the procurement and include the evaluation methods and processes to be used.

    Evaluation Method

    The evaluation method should allow for maximum flexibility in selecting the offeror providing the best value. To facilitate such flexibility, the following should be considered:

    • Using adjectival ratings to score offerors;
    • Comparing offerors’ proposals/products;
    • Testing of products to the maximum extent practical (“try before you buy”)

    Evaluation Process

    The evaluation shall be conducted in accordance with the stated evaluation criteria and the evaluation plan. The Evaluation team is to apply sound business judgment in evaluation the offeror’s proposed solution against evaluation criteria. The Evaluation Team should be limited in size and dedicated through the completion of the procurement. Verifiable information from outside sources may be considered in the evaluation.

    Evaluation Report

    The Evaluation Team shall document the results of the evaluation, including recommendations, if applicable.

    Selection

    Based on a review of the Evaluation Team’s findings, the Selection Official (either the Chief Executive Officer or his/her designee) may either:

    • make a selection decision;
    • direct that further screening be conducted, thus continuing the screening phase; or
    • cancel the procurement.

     
    The Evaluation Team may brief the Selection Official on its evaluation findings. The selection of the offeror who is expected to provide the best value is a matter committed entirely to the discretion of the Selection Official. In making the selection decision, the Selection Official may accept or reject the Evaluation Team’s recommendations. The Selection Official should document the basis for the selection decision is not authority for the SSB to award a contract. Awards must be approved by the Chief Executive Officer or Board of Directors.

    Debriefing

    Once an award has been made; all offerors who participated in the procurement will be notified of the award and given the opportunity to receive feedback on the rationale for the decision.

RESPONSIBILITIES

The responsibilities listed below are intended to be guidelines to ensure a successful evaluation. The Chief Executive Officer may apportion these responsibilities to fit the needs of specific procurements.


  • The Selection Official is responsible for selecting the offeror for award. The Chief Executive Officer shall designate the Selection Official. The Selection Official’s responsibilities are to:
     

    • approve the PIR;
    • approve the evaluation plan;
    • ensure that the Evaluation Team is properly constituted and includes all necessary disciplines; and
    • make the selection decision.

  • The Director Finance is responsible for the proper and efficient conduct of the procurement process. The Director Finance responsibilities may be delegated. Responsibilities are to:
     

    • draft the PIRs;
    • formulate the evaluation plan;
    • select the Evaluation Team and ensure that team members are briefed on the prohibition against unauthorized disclosure of information and the requirements pertaining to conflicts of interest;
    • determine, with legal counsel review, if any conflicts or apparent conflicts of interests exist, and if so , resolve them;
    • ensure that each submission is reviewed and evaluated against The BSSB’s requirements and the stated evaluation criteria;
    • exercise oversight of all procedural and administrative aspects of the procurement;
    • prepare the documentation, at the Selection Official’s request, that provides the Selection Official’s decision rationale;
    • coordinate communications with industry;
    • participate during the screening and selection phase of source selection to ensure fair treatment of all offerors;
    • issue amendments to procurement documents;
    • control all written communications with industry;
    • ensure that the contract is signed by an official with the authority to bind the contractor;
    • with guidance from legal counsel, assure that all contractual documents are in compliance with applicable laws and regulations; and
    • prepare, administer, and terminate contracts and make related determinations and decisions that are contractually binding.

  • The SSB legal Counsel has the following responsibilities:
     

    • consult with the Director Finance to determine appropriate contract clauses for a given procurement or type of procurement;
    • advise the Director Finance and Chief Executive Officer on resolution of contract disputes;
    • advise the Director Finance and Chief Executive Officer about changes to the law and the applicability of statutes to the procurement process; and
    • approve all contracts as to form prior to presentation for signature.
SINGLE SOURCE SELECTION

The SSB may contract with a single source when it is determined that doing so is in the best interest of The SSB and the decision is documented. This decision may be based, for example, on an emergency need, a need for standardization, or a finding that there is only a single source available to satisfy the requirement within the time required. The Director Finance shall document the decision. Examples of the type of information that might be included are the results of market analysis, cost/price date, unique qualifications/performance capability, and past performance.

QUALIFIED VENDOR LISTS

Qualified Vendor Lists (“QVLs”) are used to pre-qualify vendors in situations where the quality and/or performance of a product or service is critical but varies greatly among manufactures or suppliers. QVLs are established through the procurement planning procedures described above. Typically, the screening process commences with a public announcement that a Request for Qualification Information is being issued. The request should be tailored to solicit information that will allow The SSB to determine which vendors meet The SSB’s minimum requirements for the required products or services. For products, the information required to make such a determination might be, for example, equipment/products for SSB testing, product documentation, and/or production capability. For services, the information required might be, for example, descriptions about the offeror’s software development and maintenance processes, in addition to other general information suggested above for products or services.

Once qualification information is received and evaluated, a QVL may be established for the given product/service. All respondents with the minimum capabilities to meet the SSB’s requirements should be listed on the appropriate QVL for the stated products or services. Once a QVL is established, The SSB may limit competition to only those vendors on the list. Public announcements are not required for individual purchases. Each QVL should be reviewed regularly to determine whether it should be updated.

UNSOLICITED PROPOSALS

Unsolicited proposals are a valuable means for The SSB to obtain innovative or unique methods or approaches to accomplishing its mission. The SSB may consider and/or accept unsolicited proposals when it is determined to be in its best interest to do so, based on the guidance provided herein.

Guidance. A valid unsolicited proposal must:

  • be innovative and unique;
  • be independently originated and developed by the offeror;
  • be prepared without The SSB supervision;
  • include sufficient detail to permit a determination that the proposed work could benefit The SSB’s mission responsibilities;
  • not be an advance proposal for a known SSB requirement that can be acquired by competitive methods; and
  • not be advertising or promotional material, offers for commercial items.

 
Evaluation of Unsolicited Proposals. The Director Finance, in consultation with appropriate SSB staff, shall determine if the unsolicited proposal:

  • contains sufficient technical and cost information; and
  • has been signed by a responsible official or other representative authorized to contractually obligate the offeror before initiating a comprehensive evaluation.

 
Prohibitions. SSB personnel should not use any data, concept, idea or other part of an unsolicited proposal as the basis, or part of the basis, for a PIR unless the offeror is notified of and agrees to the intended use. SSB personnel should not disclose restrictively marked information concerning trade secrets, processes, operations, style of work, apparatus, and other matters, except as authorized by law, may result in criminal penalties.

CONTRACTOR QUALIFICATIONS

Applicability. This section prescribes standards and procedures pertaining to prospective contractor’s responsibility.

Policy. The Director Finance shall ensure that contracts are awarded only to responsible contractors. No contract other than micro purchases and small purchases shall be awarded unless the Director Finance makes an affirmative determination that the contractor is financially responsibility, meaning that it has both the capacity and credit as well as the tenacity and perseverance to perform the contract. The SSB will not award a contract to any company or person, or company controlled by a person, who is suspended or debarred from receiving contracts by any agency of the Belize Government, unless The SSB has a compelling need to obtain the requirement from that company and the decision is documented.


  • The Director Finance shall consider requiring “Consent to Subcontracts” in all cost reimbursable contracts and in developmental contracts where subcontracting is anticipated and the subcontract work is complex, or the dollar value is substantial.

  • Applicability. The section is applicable to purchases other than micro purchases.

    Termination for Convenience. Contracts shall contain clauses permitting The SSB to terminate the contract for the convenience of the Board.

    Termination for Default. Contracts shall contain clauses specifying the rights and remedies of the Board in the event the contractor defaults in the performance of the contract.

COST AND PRICE ANALYSIS

Policy. The SSB policy is to employ cost or price analysis to determine fair and reasonable prices for the procurement of good and services other than micro purchases and small purchases. Cost or price analysis should be used not only to determine if the proposed cost estimate or proposed price is reasonable, but also to determine the offeror’s understanding of the work and ability to perform the contract.

Price Analysis. Price analysis means the process of examining and evaluating a proposed price without evaluating its separate cost elements and proposed profit. Price analysis is the preferred method for evaluating competitive proposals. With respect to commercial items sold at established catalog or market prices, or where prices are set by law or regulation, price analysis is sufficient and examples of price analysis that may be used:

    • Compare the proposed prices received in response to an screening request.
    • Compare prior proposed prices and contract prices with current proposed prices for the same or similar products and services. To provide a suitable basis for comparison, consider differences in specifications, quantities ordered, time for delivery, and when prior acquisitions occurred.
    • Compare proposed prices with published price lists, published market prices of commodities, similar indexes, and obtain discount or rebate arrangements.

     
    Cost Analysis. Cost analysis means the review and evaluation of the separate cost elements and proposed profit of an offeror’s proposal. Cost analysis requires judgment in projecting from the cost data an estimate of what the cost of contact should be, assuming reasonable economy and efficiency. Cost Analysis should be used only in:

    • Single-Source Procurements for other than commercial items that are sold established catalog or market prices;
    • Developmental and Complex Procurements when the Director Finance determines that there is insufficient pricing information from which to determine that prices are fair and reasonable;
    • Cost reimbursable contracts; and
    • Modification to developmental and/or complex contracts.

     
    Cost or pricing data. Offerors should be required to furnish cost and pricing data to support their proposed costs only when cost analysis is necessary. Cost or pricing data means that information that can be reasonable expected to contribute to the soundness of estimates of a contractor’s proposed costs and to the validity of determinations of costs already incurred.

    Examples of cost and pricing date are:

    • vendor/subcontractor quotations;
    • estimates of nonrecurring costs;
    • information on changes in production methods and in production or purchasing volume;
    • data supporting projections of business prospects and objectives related to determining indirect cost allocation;
    • unit-cost trends such as those associated with labor efficiency;
    • make-or-buy decisions; and
    • other information on management decisions that could have a significant bearing on costs.
CONTRACT TYPES

Policy. Selecting the contract type requires the exercise of sound judgment. Contract type and price are closely related and should be considered together. The objective is to choose a contract type and price that will result in reasonable contractor risk and provide the contractor with the greatest incentive for efficient and economical performance. Fixed price contracts should be used whenever appropriate. All contacts, except those issued in emergency situations, shall be in writing.

Contract Types. The types of agreements (whether they be in the form of purchase orders, contracts, basic ordering agreements, blanket agreements) that may be used for SSB procurement include:

  • Fixed Price

    • Firm fixed price – the contractor is paid a predetermined fixed price for successfully completing all specified work.
    • Fixed unit price – a unit price is established in the contract and is subsequently used to determine the ultimate price to be paid to the contractor for successful performance (i.e., unit price multiplied by quantities delivered).

    Level of effort:

    • Time and materials. The work is described in terms of the level of services to be provided. The contractor is paid for labor at the unit price set in the contract. Materials are paid at cost to the contractor.
    • Labor hour. Similar to time and materials contract, except that the contractor is required to provide any supplies or material needed no additional cost.
    • Fixed price level-of-effort. Similar to al labor hour, except that the contractor is paid upon completion of the required level of effort. This type of contract should be used only when no other fixed price or level of effort arrangement is practical since the contractor is not required to produce any result other than completing the prescribed level of effort.

     
    Cost-reimbursement. These contracts provide for payment of allowable incurred costs to the extent prescribed in the contract. These contracts establish an estimate of total cost for the purpose of obligating funds and establishing a ceiling that the contractor may not exceed (except at its own risk) without the approval of The SSB. Cost-reimbursement contracts should be used only for the acquisition of developmental items and only when:

    • the uncertainties involved in contract performance do not permit costs to be estimated with sufficient accuracy to use any type of a fixed-price contract;
    • the contractor’s accounting system is adequate for determining costs applicable to the contract; and
    • appropriate surveillance during performance will provide reasonable assurance that efficient methods and effective cost controls are used.

     
    Types of cost reimbursement contracts. Cost reimbursement contracts may be:

    • cost contracts, in which the contractor receives no fee or profit;
    • cost-sharing contracts, in which the contractor receives no fee and is reimbursed only for an agreed-upon portion of its allowable costs;
    • cost-plus-incentive-fee contracts, which provide for an initially negotiated fee to be adjusted based on factors agreed to in the contract; or
    • cost-plus-fixed-fee contracts which provide for payment to the contractor of a negotiated fee that is fixed at the inception of the contract. The fixed fee does not vary with actual cost, but may be adjusted as a result of changes in the work to be performed under the contract.
CONTRACTING FUNDING AND PAYMENT

Applicability. This section applies to all contracts. This section includes:

  • payments to contractors for delivery and acceptance of goods and services;
  • progress payments to contractors to help finance the contractor’s performance;
  • prompt payment of contractor invoices; and
  • pricing of changes and payment of costs.


  • Policy. Prudent contract payment schemes expedite the performance of essential contracts. Contracts should be structured to allow payment promptly upon partial delivery and acceptance of goods and services. If partial deliveries are not possible or the interval between deliveries is long, progress payments may be necessary for efficient and economical contract performance. With respect to Micro Purchases and Small Purchases, payments should be made only upon delivery and acceptance of the goods and services.

    Progress Payments. Progress payments are a method of financing contract performance to be used when commercial financing is not available or would be too costly. Progress payments may be considered with respect to developmental contracts and construction contracts. Progress payments should not be made to finance the performance of contracts for commercial items unless The SSB would not otherwise be able to obtain the goods. Progress payments may be based on cost incurred or percentage or stage of completion. When progress payments are based on costs, The SSB should incrementally fund no more than 80 percent of incurred costs. When progress payments are based on percentage or stage of completion, The SSB should retail at least 10 percent of the total contract funds pending final completion and acceptance of the work.

    • Security for Progress Payments. When progress payments are made, The SSB should obtain a perfected purchase money security interest in the equipment and materials obtained for contract performance and all work in process. If the Director Finance considers it necessary, The SSB may require additional security, such as the following:

         • personal or corporate guarantees;
         • subordinations or standbys of indebtedness;
         • special bank accounts; or
         • other protective covenants as deemed necessary.

    Prompt Payment. The SSB shall make payment within 30 days after receipt of a proper invoice and receiving report, whichever is later, or in the case of progress payments, receipt of a proper progress billing request. For payments made later than 45 days after receipt of a proper invoice.

    Changes and Allowable Costs. All contracts must contain provisions governing the methodology by which contract changes will be priced. Cost reimbursable contracts must contain provision governing

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

Applicability – The policies prescribed in this section are applicable to all contracts involving intellectual property.

Policy – Patents, copyrights, and other rights in data are valuable intellectual property. It is SSB policy not to acquire from contractors greater intellectual property rights than are necessary to accomplish the Board’s mission. If during the performance of any contract and as an incident thereto, a copyrightable work is first created or an invention is first conceived or reduced to practice, The SSB shall obtain a non-exclusive, paid-up, royalty free license throughout the world to allowing the Belize Government to (i) use, disclose and reproduce the work (inclusive of all rights of copyrightable works of art, including without limitation, books or other written material, films or other audio-visual works, or computer generated works, the contract shall provide that each work so created is a work made for hire and shall require the contractor to assign to The SSB all right, title and interest to the work.

BONDS, INSURANCE, AND TAXES

Bonds. With respect to construction contracts expected to exceed $100,000, the Director Finance may require offers to provide bid guarantees and/or payment and performance bonds.

  • cash;
  • certificates of deposits or other cash equivalents from a banking institution;
  • real property owned in fee simple by the surety without any form of concurrent ownership; and
  • irrevocable letters of credit issued by a Banking institution in Belize in the name of SSB.

 
Insurance. The SSB ordinarily is not concerned with the contractor’s insurance coverage if the contract is fixed-price. However, when the contract is cost reimbursable or when the work is to be performed on SSB property, the contractor shall provide and maintain social security coverage, and such other insurance as the Director Finance may require and in amounts that he/she determines are satisfactory given the nature of the contract work.

RESOLUTION OF PROCUREMENT PROTESTS AND CONTRACT DISPUTES

Policy. Protests concerning SSB contract awards and contract disputes arising under or related to The SSB contracts, shall be resolved through the procedures described herein.

Contract Award Disputes. All Screening requests should notify offerors that The SSB is not subject to Government procurement protest laws and regulations and that by participating in the procurement they agree to abide by the procurement procedures promulgated by the SSB.

Protest Procedures. If the matter cannot be resolved by the Director Finance, a contractor may file a protest with the Board of Directors of The SSB. Protests must be filed not later than 7 business days after the date of the agency action or inaction which forms the basis of the protest (e.g., the date of contract award). Protests based upon alleged improprieties in a Procurement Information Request (“PIR”), must be filed prior to impartial third party to resolve disputes.

  • Resolution of Protest. Within 30 days after receipt of the protest by The SSB, the Director Finance shall provide the Board of Directors a report on the protest specifying why it should be denied or sustained. The Board or its designee may request that the parties attend an informal hearing if necessary to further develop the issues. Within 30 days after the later of receipt of the Director Finance report or a hearing, the Board or its designee shall rule on the protest. If the Board has designated a third party, his/her ruling shall be a recommendation to the Board, which the Board shall promptly act upon. The Board’s ruling regarding such protest shall constitute the final action by the SSB.

    Contract Disputes. All SSB contracts shall contain binding disputes resolution procedures promulgated by The SSB. Disputes should be resolved at the Director Finance level, whenever possible. With the advice of The SSB Legal Counsel and approval by the Chief Executive Officer, the Director Finance has full discretion to settle contract disputes, except when the matter involves fraud.

    • Dispute Procedures. Contract claims shall be in writing and, at a minimum, shall include a statement of facts, adequate supporting date, and a request for relief. Contract disputes must also be signed by a duly authorized representative of the contractor.

      Contract claims shall be filed with The SSB Board of Directors with 6 months after the accrual of the dispute. The accrual of a contact dispute occurs on the date on which all events last occur which fix the alleged liability of either The SSB or the contractor.

      Obligation to Continue Performance. Contractors shall be required to continue performance pending resolution of contract disputes.

      Disposition of Contract Disputes. The SSB Board of Directors, at their sole option, may render a decision regarding the dispute, or refer the dispute to Alternative Dispute Resolution.

    • Alternative Dispute Resolution. The Board of Directors will make available Alternative Dispute Resolution (“ADR”) professionals from outside The SSB to serve as neutrals in ADR proceedings. The parties will share the cost of any outside neutral. The neutral should consider the use of any ADR technique proposed by the parties that is deemed to be fair, reasonable, and in the best interest of the parties, including, but not limited to, informal communication, mediation, fact-finding, and binding or non-binding arbitration.
    • Arbitration. Binding arbitration may be employed prior to ADR only if the contractor and The SSB agree to waive ADR. All arbitration will be before a single arbitrator. If the parties cannot agree on an arbitrator, each shall nominate its own candidate, who in turn shall select the arbitrator. If either party has not nominated a candidate to select an arbitrator within the time specified, the candidate selected by the other party may, at his sole option, either serve as the arbitrator or appoint an arbitrator.
    • Judgments. Judgments upon the arbitration award may be entered by the Supreme Court in Belize. Fees shall be borne equally by the parties, unless the arbitrator apportions the fees differently. The arbitrator shall not be empowered to award punitive or consequential damages, which are hereby waived by the parties.
OTHER ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

Classified Information. The Director Finance should ensure screening information requests and contracts contain appropriate provisions and clauses if access to classified information is required.


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