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OPASS : faq

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Frequently Asked Questions


 
Why does the procurement process take so long?
 

 

 

 Where can I get procurement forms?


All forms used in the procurement of services are available for download on the DHMH Intranet or the DHMH website on the Internet.  In the DHMH Intranet, click on Standard Forms and then OPASS Forms.  In the DHMH Internet website click on Inside DHMH then Standard Forms then OPASS Forms.  Better yet, use the URL http://dhmh.maryland.gov/SitePages/sf_dcpf.aspx and go directly there.  Available forms include among others a standard Request for Proposals, Standard Solicitation Bid and Acceptance Form, Sole Source Determination, Contract Affidavits, all Cover Sheets and Standard Service Contracts.

 

 Why does the procurement process take so long?


Although the goal in OPASS is to help you procure goods and services in an efficient, timely manner, Maryland law and regulation require that agencies follow certain procedures.  The time it takes to procure goods or services varies according to the dollar amount, complexity and approval requirements of the procurement.  Purchases of $2,500 or less ($10,000 or less on eMarylandMarketplace.com) made with the corporate purchasing card take only an hour or so.  Most purchases of $25,000 or less should take no more than a week.  Purchases of complex services requiring Department of Budget, Department of General Services or Board of Public Works approval will take more time.  The OPASS Resource Guide, available through this website, or by calling OPASS at 410.767.5794, explains the process for each procurement method and the steps required to complete various types of procurements.

 

 What is a Statewide contract and when is it used?


A Statewide contract is a contract solicited and awarded by the Department of General Services or the Department of Budget and Management for use by all Executive Branch Agencies throughout the State.  These contracts may be for maintenance services used at DHMH facilities such as security guard or trash removal services; information technology such as computer hardware, software and/or services; and commodities such as office supplies or photocopiers.  A Statewide contract should be used whenever a service or commodity is available and can be obtained through a Statewide contract.  Current Statewide contracts may be viewed on the Department of Budget and Management’s (DBM) website at http://www.dbm.state.md.us/html/dbmcont.html and the Department of General Services’ (DGS) website at http://www.dgs.state.md.us/procure/swcont.htm or through eMarylandMarketplace at http://www.emarylandmarketplace.com/emm/index.cfm.

 

 I hear people talk about the Board of Public Works, what is it and why is it important?


In accordance with Article XII of the Constitution of Maryland, the Governor, Comptroller and Treasurer constitute the Board of Public Works. The General Assembly has vested all authority to procure goods and services in the Board by statute. The Board, in turn, delegates some of this authority to certain executive departments by regulation. Depending on the type and dollar amount of a contract or contract modification, the Board's approval may be required before goods are delivered or services start. More information about the Board of Public Works is available at the Board's website, http://www.bpw.state.md.us .

 

 

 What is a debriefing and when does it occur?


A request for debriefing must be made in writing from the unsuccessful offeror to the procurement officer within a reasonable period of time after notification of non-recommendation for award.  Whenever the competitive sealed proposal method is used, unsuccessful offerors have the right to be debriefed.

 

 What happens if a contract is protested?


Protests must be made in writing to the procurement officer no later than seven days after the basis for the protest is known or should have been known, whichever is earlier.  Protest must contain the name and address of the protester, appropriate identification of the procurement, a statement of the basis for the protest, and any exhibits or evidence to support the protest.  A decision on the protest shall be made by the procurement officer in writing as expeditiously as possible after receiving all relevant, requested information.  The vendor has the right to appeal.  The subsequent appeal by the vendor to the Appeals Board shall be filed within 10 days of the receipt of notice of the final procurement agency action.