The city of Kenai will copy steps to secure bids for duplication machines in city hall -- with some modifications. A resolution that was to award the bid of a five-year copier lease contract of more than $17,000 was sent back for review and rebidding at Wednesday's meeting of the Kenai City Council.
As a result of one vendor's assertion that specifications for two black-and-white copiers and another with combination black-and-white and color capabilities may have been unclear, the city will resend bids to companies to lease the machines. A resolution was originally on the agenda to award the bid to Frontier Business Systems Inc. in the amount of $17,352 per year, but after listening to public response from Randy Daly of HiSpeed Gear, the entire issue was reconsidered.
"I would like to see the city go back out to bid and correct what seems to be a discrepancy in verbiage," said council member Pat Porter.
Mayor John Williams concurred.
"The administration has furnished us with a great deal of documentation that says you did not meet the specifications," Williams said. "And this council knows, we meet the spec or we don't meet the spec."
Daly was adamant that his company's bid met the city's specifications.
"Our bid was seen to be unresponsive," Daly said. "Our bid was responsive to your specifications. We had a bid that was put together around a specific need. The unfortunate thing about it is, it doesn't address what the city is trying to accomplish."
The specification in question included the ability to print on paper of a weight up to 110 pounds, a heavier weight of paper, which can be used as covers for bound documents. Daly said his copiers are able to meet this specification, based upon a technicality he pointed out with the different types of 110-pound paper.
He said his machines are capable of printing on 90-pound index paper, which he said was equivalent to the specifications the city asked for.
"Our equipment will do this, will cost you less to operate over the course of the contract and will save you just on equipment and finance, over $16,000," he said. "So although we've been hung on a couple of detail specs, when you look at what the city is attempting to do and the output that the city is attempting to accomplish, our company is totally responsive."
Porter said the city's intentions for the paper shouldn't matter.
"If the city asked in specs for it to be 110, whether they're going to use it or not, that's what they asked for," she said.
Daly rebuffed Porter's response by pointing to the source of confusion.
"The problem is, they didn't say what kind of paper, and 110 pounds just refers to the weight of the parent sheet when you're making paper."
The bid request calls for 110-pound paper, and Daly's bid offered 90-pound index paper. He said the weight for the two were the same.
Two other companies, Ikon Office Solutions and Xerox, responded to the city's bid request.
The original resolution was to be passed by unanimous consent. Council member Duane Bannock and Porter objected to unanimous consent, which sent the issue to a roll-call vote.
The vote to award the bid was tied, which killed the resolution.
Bannock made a motion to award a bid to HiSpeed Gear, but no second followed, as is required, and this motion died as well.
Porter made a final motion to refer the bid back to administration for a redesign of the specifications. The motion was seconded and passed with four votes in favor and two votes against.
In other news from Wednes-day's meeting:
n The council approved the transfer of $5,000 in the general fund to pay for the purchase and installation of a new Windows 2000 server computer and associated software. The current server, which operates the city's e-mail system, depends on hardware that is no longer supported by the manufacturer.
n An additional amount of no more than $84,000 was approved to pay RIM Architects for design architecture and engineering services on the airport fire station and warm storage facility being built at Kenai Municipal Airport. The payment came as a result of additional costs incurred during the engineering and construction process, and subsequent negotiation between the city and the engineering firm.
n The council is accepting applications from those interested in serving on several of the city commissions. For more information, contact the city clerk at 283-8231.
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