A. Consultant Section Procedures
Prior to entering into an agreement with an architect or engineer the provisions of the following Board Policies must be satisfied:
These policies governing the selection process for design professionals are in accordance with State of Arkansas Procurement Laws and Rules, Subchapter 10-Professional and Consultant Contracts (Appendix 11) *Current as of October, 2011-please see this link for the most current version.
Pursuant to Arkansas Code Annotated §19-11-802(c)(1) (Appendix 12), qualifications based selection of architects and engineers is required; competitive bidding is prohibited.
B. Consultant Contract Types
There are two main types of contracts that may be utilized by University of Arkansas institutions:
- A Contract for a specific project. The fee is normally established as a percentage of the construction costs plus an allowance for reimbursables. The contract often will include a single agreement to provide all consultant services i.e.: Planning/Programming, Architectural Design, Interior Design, Civil and Mechanical Engineering. Campuses may wish to contract with each discipline individually, requiring separate contract documents.
- An “On-call” contract. Under an On-call contract, labor and material rates are established in the basic contract, and the basic contract does not authorize the design professional to work. When a requirement for services of a design professional arises, a price is negotiated based upon the rates negotiated for the basic contract; once the price is negotiated, the design professional proceeds with the work. On-call architects or engineers may be used for deferred maintenance or minor renovation projects; a deferred maintenance or minor renovation project is a project where the estimated cost that does not exceed $1,000,000 in accordance with Board Policy 740.2.
C. Process for Obtaining Architect/Engineering Contracts
The Chancellor of the requesting campus should request authority from the President to initiate a Request for Qualifications (RFQ), seeking architect or engineering services.
- Advertisement/Synopsis in the local newspapers (Appendix 13): The requirement for architect/engineer services is synopsized in a newspaper of general circulation for three (3) consecutive days in accordance with Board Policy 740.1. The synopsis briefly states the scope of required services, the project location and selection criteria in order of importance, any necessary forms to submit, closing date for responses, and the address of the office to receive submissions. The selection committee may also utilize such other means and methods of communication as it deems appropriate to furnish notice to licensed architects and engineers of the proposed project, the selection process and criteria, and other relevant information. At a minimum the selection committee shall allow ten (10) working days from the date of first publication in a newspaper of general circulation for design professionals to respond to the advertisement.
- Responses: Interested firms respond to the synopsis by submitting their intention to participate, a corporate resume that details their pertinent experience and qualifications.
- Selection Committee: The selection committee is made up of campus personnel selected by the Chancellor. The board reviews the architect or engineer submissions and rates them against a locally established evaluation criterion. Some of the attributes that may be used for evaluation are listed below:
- Professional Qualifications
- Specialized Experience and Technical Competence
- Capacity of the firm to Accomplish the Required Services on Schedule
- Past Performance
- Knowledge of the Campus and Surrounding Area
- Ability to Meet CADD Requirements
- Except as provided in Board Policy 730.2 with respect to major capital projects, the selection committee shall interview at least five (5) applicants. If less than five (5) firms submit responses, then all firms shall be interviewed.
- If selecting a design professional for a major capital project in accordance with Board Policy 730.2, the committee shall review the submissions and select a maximum of five (5) applicants for interviews and following initial interviews, shall select no more than three (3) applicants for design services.
- The selection committee chair then contacts the top three firms for telephone or in person interviews to determine if the firm’s qualifications have changed or if they would like to add any information to that already submitted.
- Following the interviews the selection committee shall compile a list of a minimum of three (3) firms recommended for the project and submit the list through the Chancellor or Vice President for Agriculture, as appropriate; the Chancellor then submits the list of finalists, usually in order of preference, to the President.
- Notification: Firms are notified of their selection status and that they were among the top three firms to be submitted to the Board of Trustees for final selection.
D. Architect Selection
- The Buildings and Grounds Committee of the Board shall review the recommendation and, unless the Board of Trustees has delegated such decision to the Buildings and Grounds Committee, shall submit to the Board its recommendation of the design professional(s) which it determines to be in the best interests of the University for design of the project.
- The Board of Trustees, or the Buildings and Grounds Committee if authority has been delegated to it, shall make the final decision and authorize contracts to be negotiated and awarded to the Design Professional(s) for the project.
- The selected firm is invited to submit a price proposal and enter into final negotiations with the institution. If agreement on price is reached, a contract will be awarded.
- Specific aspects of the working agreement should be discussed, documented and implemented. At a minimum, the following tenants of the team should be delineated:
- Senior contact persons for the institution and the Consulting Firm should be designated;
- Channels of communication for each side should be established;
- Develop of a roster of all participants that lists their contact information, project responsibilities and their authority levels;
- Publish a proposed schedule for all design development meetings;
- The establishment of a conflict resolution process.
F. Contract Documents
The relationship with the selected firm must be finalized utilizing contract forms approved by the University’s Office of General Counsel. Campuses may use contract documents such as the AIA B101-2007 Standard Form of Agreement between Owner and Architect or ConsensusDOCS 240, 2007-Standard Form of Agreement between Owner and Design Professional.
G. Design Process Management
To insure the design process is conducted successfully, a design development management plan should be developed and followed. The management plan should have at least the following elements:
- A clear definition of the project scope;
- A budget that identifies the funds available for each phase of the design process
- A design schedule that identifies all critical path elements;
- Change order process to manage unanticipated deviations from scope, budget or schedule;
- The scheduling of design meeting and the process for recording and distributing meeting minutes;
- Periodic milestone review process where the progress of the project can be reviewed for results according to plan.
H. Plan Review
Please see the bottom paragraph of section V. Design Review and Approvals of these capital construction policies and procedures.
I. Legislative Review
Arkansas Annotated Code §19-11-1006 (Appendix 15) requires that all professional or consultant contracts requiring the services of an individual for regular full-time or part-time weekly work, exceeding twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000), except for those which are specifically exempt from review, be presented to the Legislative Council or to the Joint Budget Committee, if the General Assembly is in session; the contracts must be reviewed before the execution date of the contract.
The responsibilities of the Institution regarding submission of the contracts for Legislative review are as follows:
- Must have Board approval of the project and Board selection of Design Professional per Board Policies 730.2, 740.1, or 740.2, whichever is applicable.
- Must have an approved Method of Finance (See section II: Project Funding of these Capital Construction Policies and Procedures).
- All contract documents (see E. Contract Documents) must be finalized at the institution and prepared for signatures.
- Must submit to the System office for legal review and signature: DFA Office of State Procurement Professional/Consultant Services Contract Form(Appendix 16) form with all required and necessary attachments, including the contract documents (see this link to the PCS section of the Arkansas Office of State Procurement website).
- Once the documents have been reviewed and executed, the System office will forward back the institution.
- Once the institution receives the documents from the System office, the institution submits the contract form and all attachments online to the Office of State Procurement’s website. If the contract is under $25,000 then the contact will be reviewed by DFA’s Office of State Procurement and then returned to the institution with all necessary signatures. If the contract is over $25,000, then it will be submitted by DFA for inclusion on the ALC Review Committee’s agenda for review.
- The institution must follow the contract through review and have a representative at the review meeting to defend the contract; the initial term start date must not precede the date the contract was approved by DFA.
*To ensure the most accurate and up-to-date information, please check for Arkansas Code changes by searching the code section on this free Arkansas Code Search: http://www.lexisnexis.com/hottopics/arcode/Default.asp