If a county determines that a project must go out for bid, then there are certain procedures to follow:
Must advertise and give proper notice.
After bids are opened, the lowest responsible bidder must be identified.
The county then contracts with that firm.
RCW 36.32.245 sets out advertising requirements for the purchase of materials, equipment, or supplies in all counties. An advertisement must be published in the county’s official newspaper at least 13 days prior to the final date for receiving bids and must state:
• the time and place where bids will be opened;
• the time after which bids will not be received;
• the materials, equipment, supplies, or services to be purchased; and
• that the specifications may be seen at the office of the clerk of the county legislative authority.
Personal services involve technical expertise provided by a consultant to accomplish a specific study, project, task, or other work.
• Personal services do not include purchased services or professional services procured using the competitive selection requirements in chapter 39.80 RCW (A/E).
• These services may or may not be required in connection with a public works project meeting the definition of “public work” in RCW 39.04.010(4).
• Activity or product is mostly intellectual in nature.
• Licenses or certification by state agencies may or may not be required, depending on the type of personal service required.