Procurement

The Division of Procurement provides a firm commitment to a procurement system that provides quality, integrity, and timeliness of service to all User Agencies, the business community, and the people of the U.S. Virgin Islands. DPP as the Government's general service agency works to provide prompt and efficient service to departments and agencies based on best value and cost-effectiveness.

The Division of Procurement operates according to the procurement and contract management system, strategy, and structure outlined in (3 V.I.C § 218(a)(1) and 31 V.I.C. §§ 231-251). All corresponding rules and regulations are guided by Title 31 Chapter 23 of the Virgin Islands Rules and Regulations.

The review and approval of purchase requisitions, issuance of solicitations, bid management, the awarding of contracts, and vendor maintenance are the primary functions of this Division. As a goal, it is the function of the Division of Procurement to obtain goods and services for the Executive Branch from the best vendors, for the best value, and within the best timeframe.

The Purchasing Office contracts for the acquisition of supplies, equipment, and services, and construction needs of the department and agencies of the Virgin Islands Government through the most economical methods. The Office of Procurement, Contract Management, and Reporting (OPCMR) oversees the entire contracting process, from the formation of a properly negotiated and executed contract to project completion. All discrepancies, claims, and contractual disputes, as well as protests in the bidding or procurement process, are resolved by the OPCMR.

Procurement is a series of processes that are essential to get products or services from requisition to purchase order and invoice approval. Although we sometimes use procurement and purchasing interchangeably, they differ from each other.

Purchasing is the primary process of obtaining necessary goods and services on behalf of an enterprise, while procurement describes the activities involved in obtaining those things. The public procurement process is unique to the GVI’s operations

 

DPP negotiates strategic contracts also known as General Contracts on behalf of our user agencies to maximize our purchasing power in various spend categories ranging from food products to security services to fuel supply and many more. Individuals or businesses that are interested in these government-wide opportunities, should email our Procurement Team for more information at procurement@dpp.vi.gov.

 

Invitation for Bid

An Invitation for Bid (IFB), is an advertisement for vendors to submit a proposal on a project for a specific product or service. While an IFB is very similar to an RFP (Request for Proposal), it is concerned with the pricing more so than the conceptual ideas of the project. Similar to all other types of bids, an Invitation for Bid is generally awarded to the bidder who submits the lowest bid. Keep in mind, though, that this isn’t always the case. There are other factors that come into play, such as the quality of products or expertise needed to carry out a certain project.

Request for Proposal

A Request for Proposal (RFP), is a solicitation by a government entity or agency for products or services from public contractors. By law, government agencies are required to issue bids publicly whenever they are in need of a specific product or service. This is standard policy in order to prevent "insider bidding", where companies are being awarded contracts secretively. It is also beneficial for the government agency itself because it creates competition, resulting in lower prices for them.

An RFP is more than just a request for a quotation, it is an actual request to perform a specific project or supply a specific product. Often times they are issued when the selection of a supplier cannot be made solely on the basis of the lowest price. An RFP is used to procure the most cost-effective solution based upon evaluation criteria identified in the RFP.

Request for Qualifications

A Request for Qualification allows vendors and contractors to provide quotation on a specific product or service that is intended to be procured, or obtained. Unlike a number of other requests, RFQs are not solely based on the price at which the vendor or contractor provides in order to perform the service or provide the product. RFQs are based off of various aspects of the type of job to be performed or product to be supplied determining factors may include:
the length of time it will take the vendor to complete the project, the price per items, and much more is taken in to consideration before awarding the contractor/vendor that wins.

Virgin Islands Code Annotated > TITLE THIRTY-ONE Public Works and Property (Pts. I — II) >
PART II. Public Property (Chs. 20 — 26) > Chapter 23. Procurement and Sale (§§ 231 — 251)


All open market purchases (i.e. items procured without going through the formal bidding process required by Title 31, Virgin Islands Code, Chapter 23, Section 236) must comply with the following:

a)Supplies, material, and equipment may be purchased and contractual services negotiated for, in the open market without observing the provisions of section 236 of this title provided —

(1)the Governor declares, in the public interest by Proclamation that a State of Emergency exists and specifies in such Proclamation those purchases and/or services which may be obtained without observing the provisions of said section 236;

(2)there exists a threat to public health, safety or welfare under emergency conditions as defined in regulations prescribed by the Commissioner; provided, that such emergency procurements shall be made with such competition as is maximally practicable under the circumstances; and provided further, that all procurements made pursuant to this item shall be clearly stamped “PUBLIC EXIGENCY”;

(3) the aggregate amount involved is $10,000 to $50,000; provided that:

(A)an agency does not purchase the same supplies, materials, or equipment on a recurring basis or contract for the same services on a recurring basis from one person, firm, partnership, or corporation in a fiscal year;

(B)only the head of the department or agency or semiautonomous agency or the certifying officer is authorized to certify expenditures between $10,000 and $50,000 for open market purchases and
negotiated contracts for services made pursuant to this paragraph; and

(C)at least three quotations must be obtained from several vendors and the purchase must be made from the best value;

(4) the aggregate amount involved is less than $10,000; provided that:

(A)an agency does not purchase the same supplies, materials or equipment on a recurring basis or contract for the same service on a recurring basis from one person, firm, partnership or corporation
in a fiscal year; 

(B)only the head of the department or agency is authorized to certify the expenditures; and

(C)at least one quotation is obtained and the price is determined to be reasonable according to a survey of the market for the supplies, materials or equipment or professional service.

(5)the purchase or contract is for property or services to be procured and used outside the Virgin Islands; provided that such property or services shall be procured by competitive negotiation;

(6)the purchase or contract is for (a) medicine or medical, hospital, laboratory, surgical equipment and supplies; or (b) supplies, and equipment for the control and/or eradication of insects, pests, mosquitoes or grass diseases; or (c) supplies and equipment for the control and prevention of air and water pollution; or (d) agricultural products (as that term is defined by 7 V.I.C. § 11) which have been produced within the Virgin Islands;

(7)the purchase or contract is for property or material for authorized sale for agricultural purposes;

(8)the purchase or contract is for property or services for which it is impracticable to obtain competition;

(9)the purchase or contract is for equipment that is technical whose standardization and interchangeability of whose parts are necessary in the public interest and whose procurement by
negotiation is necessary to assure that standardization and interchangeability.

(10)the purchase or contract is for property or services for which the bid prices received after formal advertising are unreasonable as to all or part of the requirements, or were not independently reached in open competition, and for which

(A)each responsible bidder has been notified of an intention to negotiate and a reasonable opportunity has been given to negotiate;

(B)the negotiated price is lower than the lowest rejected bid of any responsible bidder; and 

(C)the negotiated price is the lowest negotiated price offered by any responsible supplier;

(11)negotiation of the price or a contract is otherwise authorized by law.

(12)the purchase is from the U.S. General Services Administration, the U.S. Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office, or is made under the terms of a contract of the General Services Administration, Federal Supply Service, and in the case of such purchases only, subsection
(b) of this section shall not apply.

(13)the purchase or contract is for an aggregate amount not exceeding $25,000 and is made by the Commissioner of Property and Procurement on behalf of any department or agency of the Government of the Virgin Islands; provided all purchases and contracts shall be made on a competitive basis to the
maximum extent possible.

(b)Where an open market purchase is made, or a contract for services negotiated for, pursuant to clauses (1) and (2) of subsection (a) of this section, the approval of the Governor shall be necessary and, in addition, if the purchase is made pursuant to clause (2) of subsection (a) of this section, the Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall attach to the requisition stamped “Public Exigency” a brief but concise description of the nature of the public exigency involved. Open market purchases and negotiated contracts for services made pursuant to all other clauses of such subsection may be made only after a full explanation of the circumstances requiring the purchase or contract have been filed with the Governor and the Commissioner of Property and Procurement and shall be open to public inspection. The Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall file prior to the 15th day of each month, a report with the Governor and the Finance Committee of the Legislature listing (1) the names and addresses of all persons, firms or corporations making sales or contracting to provide services to the Government, (2) the purchase made or service provided, and (3) the amount of each purchase or contract, made pursuant to this section.

(c)The data respecting the negotiation of each purchase or contract under subsection (a) of this section shall be kept by the Commissioner of Property and Procurement for six years after the date of final payment of the
contract.

(d)Deleted.

(e)The Commissioner of Property and Procurement may solicit bids from prospective vendors by mail or by telephone. The Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall keep a record of all open market purchases and the competitive bids submitted thereon. Such records shall be open to public inspection.

(f)Using agencies may make direct purchases, or contract for supplies, materials, equipment, and contractual services in accordance with rules and regulations prescribed by the Commissioner of Property and Procurement and approved by the Governor.

  • Supply Contracts
    When procuring goods and services for Executive Branch departments pursuant to Title 31, Virgin Islands Code, Chapter 23, Section 236, an IFB is used. Two (2) types of supply contracts can result from this procurement: (1) a one-time procurement, which means that the User Agency needs to buy the item(s) for immediate delivery and (2) term procurement which means that the User Agency will require the goods or services over an extended period of time. The duration of term procurements in most cases is one (1) year with an option for an additional term at the request of the User Agency. An IFB is required for all supply contracts for services, even if the total cost is under $10,000.00 because the complete service or purchase will be performed on a recurring basis.
  • Professional Services Contracts
    When procuring professional services for the Government of the Virgin Islands, User Agencies should follow the requirements of Title 31, Virgin Islands Code, Chapter 23, Section 236(a)(4) and the corresponding rules and regulations and the requirements outlined in Section IV of the Procurement Manual. However, if a User Agency is not able to comply with the requirements of Title 31, Virgin Islands Code, Chapter 23, Section 239(a)(4) and its corresponding rules and regulations, or another exception to the formal bidding process does not apply to the contract, User Agencies will be required to formally advertise a Request for Proposals. In submitting such requests, the User Agency must submit a letter of request stating the need for the services, scope of work, and proof of funding to DPP. Professional Services Contracts are used for services solicited through a Request for Proposals. Professional Services Contracts are used for profit and non-profit businesses/individuals engaged in rendering widely diversified services for the Government of the Virgin Islands.
  • Construction Contracts
    When procuring construction services for the Government of the Virgin Islands, an IFB is used. The User Agency must submit the following to the Commissioner of Property and Procurement:
    • a letter, signed by the Agency Head requesting advertisement of the project, this letter must include the funding source (local or federal) and any special conditions that may apply to this solicitation;
    • proof of funding through a properly executed Purchase Order stating the funds available for the project or a signed letter from the Public Finance Authority (PFA);
    • An in-house cost-estimate, i.e. scope of work/bid sheet, stamped by the Department of Public Works Division of Engineering along with a blank bid sheet
     
  • Task Order Contracts
    There may be instances when a User Agency’s request to procure services cannot be captured by a typical supply contract or a typical professional services contract because the services will not occur at a predetermined or expected frequency. In those instances, the Commissioner of DPP will determine whether a Task Order Contract is necessary based on the information contained in the User Agency’s request. Task Order Contracts are generally required for the acquisition of services under Title 31, Virgin Islands Code, Chapter 23, Sections 239(a)(1) and (2). Task Order Contracts may be required within the discretion of the Commissioner of DPP, for services under Title 31, Virgin Islands Code, Chapter 23, Section 239(a)(3), when the cost of services is less than $50,000.00 and not subject to a Professional Services Contract or a Supply Contract. In such instances, the services to be performed will not occur at a pre-determined frequency, but rather can only occur when required, and upon written request by the User Agency. All standard supporting documentation required for a Professional Services Contract will be required for a Task Order Contract

Virgin Islands Code Annotated > TITLE THIRTY-ONE Public Works and Property (Pts. I — II) >
PART II. Public Property (Chs. 20 — 26) > Chapter 23. Procurement and Sale (§§ 231 — 251)

_____________________________________________________

(a)Except as provided for in section 239, all purchases of and contracts for supplies, materials, equipment, and
contractual services and for all sales of obsolete and unusable personal property must be based on competitive bids, or competitive proposals. All expenditures made pursuant to this title must be in writing. Notices inviting sealed competitive bids must be published in the newspapers of general circulation within the Virgin Islands, or on the Department of Property and Procurement’s website and online or by electronic publications, and on Federal Government databases, used by the General Services Administration. Not fewer than five calendar
days must intervene between the date of the last publication and the final date for submitting bids. The notices
must include:


(1)a general description of the articles to be purchased or sold,
(2)a statement of where blank bids and specifications may be obtained,
(3)the time and place for the bid opening, and
(4)the place where the property may be inspected, if it is an item that is being sold.


(b)The Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall solicit sealed bids or proposals from all responsible, prospective suppliers or purchasers who have requested their names to be added to the bidders’ list, by sending them the notices electronically or through regular mail, as will acquaint them with the proposed purchase or sale. All pending purchases or sales must also be posted on the Department of Property and
Procurement’s website.


(c)All bids shall contain a specific itemization of all units bid upon and the unit price thereof and shall be submitted sealed to the Commissioner of Property and Procurement and, when deemed necessary, shall be accompanied by surety in the form of check, irrevocable letter of credit or bond for 5 percent of the bid amount
for all construction contracts over $150,000, except as otherwise provided in section 236a. The bids shall be opened in public at the time and place stated in the advertisements. A tabulation of all bids received shall be filed for public inspection. The Commissioner of Property and Procurement may reject any or all bids, or the bid for any one or more commodities or contractual services included in the proposed contract, when the public
interest will be served thereby. If all bids received are for the same total amount or unit price, and if the public interest will not permit the delay of readvertising for bids, the Commissioner of Property and Procurement may award the contract to one of the bidders by drawing lots. Otherwise, the contract shall be awarded to the lowest, responsive, responsible bidder, where responsiveness is determined by whether the bidder complies with the invitation for bids in all material respects, and responsible is determined by whether the bidder possess the financial, technical and human resources to perform the proposed contract. Service reputation shall be determined by the Commissioner of Property and Procurement by actions, including but not limited to an
analysis of the creditworthiness of the business and the principals in the business, utilizing such independent credit bureaus as may be appropriate. No bid shall be considered by the Commissioner of Property and Procurement unless the bid includes a financial disclosure statement and a work experience statement. The
Commissioner shall issue rules concerning the type of information to be submitted. The rules shall include a sample form of each statement. The Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall discourage uniform bidding and endeavor to obtain as full and open competition as possible on all purchases and sales.

(d)Each bid, with the name of the bidder, shall be entered on a record, and each record with the successful bid indicated shall, after the award of letting of the contract, be opened to public inspection. Except as otherwise provided in section 236a, a payment and performance bond or an irrevocable letter of credit for 100 percent of the contract price for construction contracts over $150,000 for the proper performance of each contract may be
required by the Commissioner of Property and Procurement.


(e)Sales shall be made to the highest responsible bidder. All contracts shall be in form previously approved. If the successful bidder shall not within ten days after the award complete his contract, he shall forfeit any surety which accompanied his bid.


(f)The Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall file prior to the 15th day of each month, a report with the Governor and the Finance Committee of the Legislature listing (1) the names and addresses of all persons, firms or corporations making sales of supplies, materials, equipment or services by competitive bid under this section, (2) a description of the purchase made or service provided, and (3) the amount of the contract award.

(g)
(1)For all services to be performed in the Virgin Islands and at the time of the submission of the bid or proposal, the Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall require all bidders or respondents when submitting a bid or proposal to include:


(A)a current certificate of good standing or its equivalent,
(B)articles of incorporation or organization or its equivalent,
(C)a corporate resolution or its equivalent, and
(D)current business license in the Virgin Islands,


(2)Notwithstanding paragraph (1), out of territory respondents to Requests for Proposals shall submit a Virgin Islands business license not more than 15 days after the award, unless the services will not be performed in the Territory, or the business transaction is otherwise not considered to be doing business
in the Territory.


(h)The Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall require all successful bidders for contracts in excess of $500,000.00 to agree in writing to employ at least two individuals from the Welfare to Work Program, administered by the Labor and Human Services Departments.


(i)Notwithstanding any provision of this chapter to the contrary, the Commissioner shall comply with the Small, Local and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program established under title 11 V.I.C., chapter 23, subchapter IA and shall, in consultation with the Chief Executive Officer of the Small Business Development Agency, coordinate the bid preference and set aside programs for small business enterprises pursuant to 11
V.I.C. § 1270a.


(j)Request for Proposals must be used when conditions are not suitable for sealed competitive bids, where price is not the sole determining factor and the award is based on price and technical factors. Requests for Proposals must be advertised in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and identify all evaluation factors, including qualifications, responsiveness, experience, past performance, responsibility, cost, and their relative importance. Any response to a Request for Proposals must be considered to the maximum extent practical. The Department of Property and Procurement shall have a written protocol for conducting technical
evaluations of the proposals received and for selecting recipients. Notices inviting sealed competitive proposals must be published in the newspapers of general circulation within the Virgin Islands, or on the Department of Property and Procurement’s website and online or electronic publications, and Federal Government databases used by the General Services Administration. Not fewer than five calendar days must intervene between the date of the last publication and the final date for submitting proposals. Contracts must be awarded to the responsible firm whose proposal represents the best value to the Government, with price and other factors considered.


(k)The Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall use Requests for Proposals for:

(1)professional services, including architectural/engineering services, accounting and auditing services, legal services, medical services, residential services, information technology services;


(2)design-build construction projects where the Government will use one contractor for both the design and construction; where the construction activities are highly specialized, and a design-build approach is critical in developing construction methodology; or a design-build approach provides opportunities for greater innovation and efficiencies between the designer and the builder; or significant savings in project delivery time would be realized;


(3)construction manager or general contractor construction projects where the Government will engage a construction manager during the design process to provide constructability input regarding scheduling, pricing, phasing and other input to help the Government design a more constructible project. The construction manager is generally selected based on qualifications, past experience or a best-value basis. At approximately an average of 60% to 90% design completion, the Government and the construction manager shall negotiate a “guaranteed maximum price” for the construction of the project based on the defined scope and schedule. If this price is acceptable to both parties, the Government shall select the construction manager for the construction services, and the construction manager shall become the general contractor.


(l)The Commissioner of Property and Procurement shall use Requests for Qualifications in instances where the Government needs to pre-screen proposers to determine qualifications before requesting proposals under section 239 or when the Government is seeking to make multiple awards at a pre-determined price, and the Government is seeking qualified respondents to participate in the solicitation.

All Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) and Agreement (MOA) must go through the approval process of DPP review, DOJ Legal Sufficiency, and approval by the Governor even though there is no exchange of funds and/or services. This applies whether the MOUs/MOAs are between government agencies only or with non-GVI entities. In all instances where there will be no exchange of funds and/ or services, Memoranda of Understanding may be utilized to memorialize each party’s responsibilities and commitments to participate in a particular program or joint-partnership towards the fulfilment of a common goal. Executive Branch agencies may enter into Memoranda of Understanding with other Executive Branch agencies, Federal agencies, and with profit/ non-profit groups. Where there will be the exchange of funds or services or other valuable consideration, between Executive Branch agencies, semi-autonomous and independent instrumentalities, Federal agencies, and universities, including the University of the Virgin Islands, a Memorandum of Agreement will be required. You may view samples of each contract type under Forms & Docs Procurement.

For the procurement of goods and services utilizing federal funds whether in whole or in part, User Agencies must comply with the requirements in their respective grant award or the federal program under which the funds were awarded, and the requirements outlined in the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards found in Title 2, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 200. Title 2, Code of Federal Regulations, section 200, streamlines and supersedes the information contained in eight earlier US Office of Management and Budget Circulars, thus, Title 2, Code of Federal Regulations, section 200, is sometimes referred to as the "Super Circular". Pursuant to Title 2, Code of Federal Regulations, section 200.90, the Virgin Islands is defined as a state and states are required to follow their own procurement laws in accordance with Title 2, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 200.317.

Therefore, User Agencies are still required to follow the provisions of Title 31, Virgin Islands Code, Chapter 23, and all the associated rules and regulations when procuring goods and services using federal grant awards. In addition, to following all applicable local requirements, all states are required to comply with the requirements in Title 2, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 200.322 regarding the use of recovered materials in all procurement as well as ensuring all necessary clauses in title 2, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 200.326 are included in state contracts. Therefore, it is imperative for User Agencies to review the terms and conditions of all federal awards and applicable sections of the Code of Federal Regulations to ensure compliance with all requirements.

 

The Government Travel Policy is enforced under Executive Order No. 439-2008. All Government employees are who overnight for work purposes are eligible for a $75 daily per diem.

Inter-island travel accommodations are accepted at the following hotels on St. Thomas - Emerald Beach Resort, Lindbergh Bay Hotel, and Windward Passage Hotel; on St. Croix the hotels include King's Alley Hotel, Caravelle Hotel, Renaissance Carambola, and the Inn on Strand Street on the island of St. Croix. The maximum daily rate for all hotel stays is $250 + taxes. 

Each agency may purchase bulk tickets from these commuter airlines as necessary: Seaborne Airlines/Silver Airways, Cape Air/Nantucket Airlines, and Sea Flight.

Out of territory travel and related expenses must be pre-approved by the Governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands.

All folios and receipts must be reconciled and turned in with a Travel Expense form against all cash advances, credit cards, or to request a reimbursement.

 

 

 

The Office of Procurement, Contract Management, and Reporting is a specially trained unit responsible for managing procurement functions across the Government of the U.S. Virgin Islands under the supervision of the Commissioner of Property and Procurement. OPCMR was authorized under Executive Order No. 493-2019.

 

 
 

Lisa M. Alejandro, Assistant Commissioner (STT) 

Dynell R. Williams, Deputy Commissioner of Procurement and Central Stores & Warehousing (STX)

Akela Frett, Director of Vendor Management (STT)

 

 

Procurement FAQs

Why was my requisition rejected when I submitted the invoice and the cost was below $5,000?

Requisitions are approved by quotations ONLY through the Department of Property and Procurement ("DPP").

Why was my requisition rejected when I submitted a quote under $5,000 from an off-island vendor?

All purchases under $5,000 from an off-island vendor must include at least two quotations with at least one from a local vendor (if applicable)

What documents should a user agency submit to DPP to request the solicitation of services?

User Agencies must submit a justification letter requesting advertisement along with the funding source and a copy of the Scope of Work/Services.

What is the procedure for adding a new vendor?

The new vendor request should be submitted to DPP and shall include a request to add vendor letter and current W-9 form for individuals. For business entities, a request to add vendor letter, a current W-9 form and all vendor supporting business documentation must be submitted. (A list of vendor required business documents can be found on DPP’s website under the Resources > Forms & Documents>Procurement tab).

How can I get a Purchase Order modified?

User Agencies must submit a request to the Office of the Commissioner of DPP, stating the cause for the modification and the revision(s) needed.

How long is a Purchase Order valid?

Purchase Orders (POs) are valid for 90 days. If unexpended but required, User Agencies must contact the Department of Finance and request an extension.

What is the process for approving a contract?

Contracts must be submitted to DPP, inclusive of a transmittal letter, all vendor supporting business documentation, and proof of the funding source.

Where can I find a copy of the Government’s standard contracts and forms?

You can obtain copies of the Government’s contracts and forms on DPP’s website, under the Resources > Forms & Documents> Procurement tab.

What documents are required to support a vendor’s contract?

DPP’s website provides a list of vendor types and the vendor documents necessary for contracting. This checklist can be found under the Resources > Forms & Documents> Procurement tab.

Who is required to have a DUNS number and be registered with SAM.gov?

All entities doing business with the Government of the U.S. Virgin Islands must have a DUNS number and SAM.gov registration.

When should I use an MOU versus an MOA?

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is used when there is no exchange of funds between the parties for the performance of tasks.

A Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) is used when funds or in-kind services are being exchanged

How long must a request for advertising services be posted?

The Government’s solicitations are posted for a minimum of 30 days (with some exceptions to the rule).