Increased Bid Limits for Agencies Subject to Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act
UPCCA Update Takes Effect Jan. 1
Assembly Bill 2249, signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday, increases the bid limits for the Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act. The new limits go into effect on Jan. 1.
Currently, the Act authorizes public projects of $45,000 or less to be let without competitive bidding, authorizes public projects of $175,000 or less to be let by informal bidding procedures, and requires public projects of more than $175,000 to be let by formal bidding procedures. With the increased thresholds, agencies that have adopted the procurement procedures required by the Act may perform public projects of $60,000 or less without competitive bidding and will not be required to undertake formal bidding unless the public project exceeds $200,000.
An agency must affirmatively adopt the procedures of the Act in order to use the alternate procedures, which does come with additional administrative requirements. In exchange for the higher formal bid threshold, the Act requires that agencies comply with certain notice, bidding and accounting procedures set forth in the California Uniform Construction Cost Accounting Commission’s Cost Accounting Policies and Procedures Manual. Public agencies without sufficient staff resources should balance the benefit of obtaining a higher formal bid threshold against the burden of maintaining annual contractor lists, providing additional notice to contractors under the Act’s procedures, and complying with the Act’s accounting requirements for work performed with the agency’s own forces.
The Act, enacted in 1983 under Public Contract Code section 22000 et seq., provides that the Commission must review the informal bid limits every 5 years for inflation and other factors to determine whether adjustments should be made. The last increase was effective July 1, 2011.
For further details about the increased bid limit or participation in the Act, please contact the authors of this Legal Alert listed to the right in the firm’s Special Districts practice group, or your BB&K attorney.
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