Local Contracting Agencies Now Prohibited from Using Price As Basis for Awarding Certain Consultant Contracts
Oregon’s legislature recently changed ORS 279C.110 to require all public agencies, both state and local, to use qualifications as the basis for awarding contracts for architectural, engineering, photogrammetric mapping, transportation planning and land surveying services. Before the change, local contracting agencies could use price as a basis for award but state agencies could not. Once a candidate has been selected based on qualifications, an agency must negotiate the consultant’s compensation at a level that is reasonable and fair to the contracting agency. If the parties do not reach agreement on compensation, the contracting agency may terminate negotiations and begin again with the next most qualified candidate, and so on, until an agreement is reached or the contracting agency terminates the consultant contracting process.