Prequal Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the Contractor Prequalification Program?
Answer: The DAS Contractor Prequalification Program (C.G.S §4a-100) requires all contractors to prequalify before they can bid on a contract or perform work pursuant to a contract for the construction, reconstruction, alteration, remodeling, repair or demolition of any public building or any other public work by the state or a municipality, estimated to cost more than $500,000 and which is funded in whole or in part with state funds, except a public highway or bridge project or any other construction project administered by the Department of Transportation.
Do sub-contractors who participate on these projects have to be prequalified?
Answer: Yes, as of October 1, 2007, no company whose contract exceeds five hundred thousand dollars in value may perform work as a subcontractor on said projects, unless the company is prequalified with the Department of Administrative Services.
Do I have to be Prequalified with the DAS Contractor Prequalification program if my company supplies material but does not do any installation or construction work?
Answer: No. Suppliers of material or products who do not do installation or construction work are not subject to the DAS Construction Contractor Prequalification requirement.
What if I am already prequalified by the Connecticut DOT? Do I still have to be prequalified through the DAS?
Answer: Yes, if you want to bid on projects covered by the prequalification legislation. The DAS and DOT prequalification programs are different.
What are the criteria for prequalification?
Answer: There are five categories:
· Work Experience (Skill and Ability-Public & Private)
· Experience and Qualifications of Supervisory Personnel
Employed by the Applicant
· Financial Condition
What are some of the possible circumstances for which a contractor may be found ineligible for Prequalification?
Answer: Click Here for examples representing, but not limited to, circumstances where DAS may find ineligibility
What are the prequalification classifications?
Answer: Click Here for a complete list of classifications with descriptions.
How do I apply?
Answer: To apply for Prequalification you must complete an online application and submit required hard copy documents, which includes a nonrefundable application fee.
Click on the link below for a detailed description of the steps a contractor needs to take to become Prequalified.
How to Become Prequalified
What are the hard copy documents that must be sent to the DAS?
Answer: Click Here for a list of hard copy documentation that must be submitted with your on-line Contractor Prequalification Application.
How long does the prequalification process take?
Answer: Upon receipt of a completed application the DAS will provide you a preliminary determination within sixty 60 days.
Be advised that an application is considered complete when all required hard copy documentation and the on-line application have been received by the DAS.
How will I be notified that my company has been prequalified?
Answer: Once you are prequalified you will receive a notice via email of your company’s approval for Prequalification and directions on how to retrieve your Prequalification Certificate. The certificate will indicate the prequalification classification(s), aggregate work capacity rating, single limit rating and the certificate expiration date.
Note: These emails are sent to the contact person on the Prequalification Application and the UserID of the Application.
How do I know which projects require prequalification from prospective bidders?
Answer: Statute 4a-100 requires the awarding authority to advertise for bids on these projects and to indicate the prequalification classification they are seeking.
Projects requiring prequalification are state funded, costing $500,000 or more for the construction, reconstruction, alteration, remodeling, repair or demolition of any public building or any other public work by the state or a municipality except a public highway or bridge project or any other construction project administered by the Department of Transportation
If I want to bid on a project subject to Prequalification, what do I need to include with the bid?
Answer: Each bid submitted for a contract that has a prequalification requirement must include 2 documents:
1. Copy of your Prequalification Certificate
2. Update (Bid) Statement.
Prequalification Certificate – A contractor can print a copy of their certificate from the on-line Contractor Directory which can be accessed by clicking on the following link http://das.ct.gov/Business_Svs/PreQual/Search_Form.asp
Update (Bid) Statement – This document can be completed on-line by logging into your application and clicking on Update (Bid) Statement.
Note: This method is strongly encouraged, as it will allow the contractor to keep their prequalification application current for future renewals.
You can also download the “Update (Bid) Statement” form by clicking on the following link Update (Bid) Statement form.
How long does my initial prequalification last?
Answer: For one year. The DAS may issue a certificate of prequalification to any applicant who meets the requirements as outlined by the DAS. The certificate will be effective for one year from the date issued and will indicate the contractor’s prequalification classification, aggregate work capacity rating and single limit rating.
Can I change the prequalification classification/s and/or aggregate work capacity that I am given during the course of the year?
Answer: Yes, prequalified contractors may apply at any time to change their prequalification classification(s) and/or aggregate work capacity ratings by submitting the applicable fee and any other information the DAS requires. Contact the Prequalification unit for more information.
How do I renew my prequalification certificate and is there a fee?
Answer: It is the responsibility of each contractor to ensure that pre-qualification does not lapse. DAS will notify firms as a courtesy via e-mail approximately 90 days prior to expiration of pre-qualification.
Note: These emails are sent to the contact person on the Prequalification Application and the UserID of the Application.
To renew your DAS prequalification certificate, you will need to update each section of your on-line application and submit all required hardcopy documentation. Click on the following to see a list of required documents and the fee for renewal: http://www.biznet.ct.gov/Images/235/renewal_hard_copy_doc_instructions091609.pdf
If I have a Major Contractor’s registration through the Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) and become prequalified through DAS, do I have to pay the DCP registration fee, in addition to the DAS prequalification fee?
Answer: Following initial registration, for which a fee must be paid, prequalified contractors are not required to pay a fee to renew their company’s DCP major contractor registration at any time that the contractor maintains a valid prequalification certificate from DAS.
What happens if I apply for prequalification but my application is denied?
Answer: Any applicant aggrieved by the DAS’ preliminary determination may request copies of the information upon which the DAS relied in making the preliminary determination, provided such request is made not later than ten days after the date the notice was mailed or sent by electronic mail to the applicant. No later than twenty days after the postmark date the notice was mailed or sent by electronic mail to the applicant, the applicant may submit additional information to the DAS with a request for reconsideration.
The DAS will issue a final determination regarding the application no later than ninety days after the postmark date the notice of preliminary determination was mailed or sent by electronic mail. This ninety-day period may be extended for an additional period not to exceed ninety days if (1) the DAS gives written notice to the applicant that the DAS requires additional time, and (2) such notice is mailed or sent by electronic mail during the initial ninety-day period.
Any applicant aggrieved by the DAS’ final determination concerning a preliminary determination, a denial of certification, a reduction in prequalification classification or aggregate work capacity rating, or a revocation or non-renewal of certification may appeal to the Superior Court in accordance with section 4-183 of the Connecticut General Statutes.
What happens if I apply for a specific prequalification classification(s), aggregate work capacity, and single limit ratings but the DAS does not agree with this request?
Answer: The DAS reserves the right to determine the specific prequalification classification(s), aggregate work capacity and single limit ratings based on information supplied by the applying contractor. Refer to Question #18 for information regarding your rights if you are aggrieved by the DAS’ determination.
Will I be reimbursed my initial application fee or renewal if my company’s application is denied?
Answer: No, all fees are nonrefundable.
Does being prequalified guarantee that my company will receive construction work within the State of Connecticut?
Answer: No, being prequalified by the DAS only allows the prequalified contractor to bid on covered projects (within the classification/s, aggregate work capacity and single limit ratings of the contractor). Please note: It is not a statement of the company’s capacity to perform a specific project. That responsibility lies with the awarding authority.
In addition to the documents required in the bid, a copy of your Prequalification Certificate and an Update (Bid) Statement must be included. (Refer to Question #13)
Has the term “lowest responsible qualified bidder” been redefined?
Answer: Yes, as otherwise provided in law, “lowest responsible qualified bidder” now includes a requirement that, for bids that have a prequalification requirement, the contractor must be prequalified by the DAS.
Are status reports required from awarding authorities?
Answer: Yes, according to Connecticut General Statute §4b-101a, no later than January 1, 2006, and annually thereafter, each awarding authority, other than a municipality, shall prepare a report on the status of:
(1) Any ongoing project for the construction, reconstruction, alteration, remodeling, repair or demolition of any public building which is estimated to cost more than five hundred thousand dollars and is paid for, in whole or in part, with state funds, or
(2) Any property management contract awarded by the Department of Public Works that has an annual value of one hundred thousand dollars or more.
Except for a school construction project, the awarding authority shall submit the report to the Governor and the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to government administration and finance, revenue and bonding.
The report shall be submitted in accordance with section 11-4a. The first report submitted after a contract is awarded shall indicate:
· When, where and how the request for bids was advertised;
· Who bid on the projects;
· The provisions of law that governed the award of the contract and if there were any deviations from standard procedure in awarding the contract;
· The names of the individuals who had decision-making authority in awarding the contract, including, but not limited to, the individuals who served on any award panel;
· If an award panel was used, whether the recommendation of the panel was followed and, if applicable, the reason why such recommendation was not followed;
· Whether the awarding authority has any other contracts with the contractor who was awarded the contract, and if so, the nature and value of the contract; and
· Any provisions of law that authorized or funded the project.
Note: The University of Connecticut shall not be required to submit a report pursuant to this section for any project, as defined in subdivision (16) of section 10a-109c that is undertaken and controlled by the university.
To whom specifically is the report sent?
Answer: The Governor’s Office
210 Capitol Avenue
Hartford, CT 06106
Government Administration and Election Committee
Legislative Office Building, Room 2200
Hartford, CT 06105
Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee
Legislative Office Building, Room 3700
Hartford, CT 06106
What happens if the project is initially estimated below $500,000 dollars (therefore not advertised as a prequalification required project) however when the bids are received, the reality is that it is over five hundred thousand $500,000 dollars. Do I have to rebid this project?
Answer: No, the statute only applies to projects that are estimated to cost five hundred thousand ($500,000) dollars or more at the time of bid.
Connecticut General Statute §4a-101 states that once my company is awarded a project that is subject to the contractor prequalification program it will be evaluated by the awarding authority/owner. At what points during the project will these evaluations be conducted?
Answer: When 50% of the work on the construction project is completed, the awarding authority/owner must give the contractor a written copy of the preliminary evaluation.
This 50% evaluation is between the awarding authority/owner and the contractor. DAS does not receive a copy of this evaluation.
When 100% of the work on the construction project is completed, the awarding authority/owner must complete and submit an evaluation form for the contractor (that signed a contract directly with the awarding authority/owner). DAS must receive a copy of this evaluation. This evaluation will factor into the contractor’s ability to prequalify in the future.
The evaluation/s must be completed on the DAS evaluation form found by visiting the link below: http://www.biznet.ct.gov/prequal/
NOTE: This evaluation requirement applies only to contractors who have signed a contract directly with the awarding authority/owner.
For the Contractor Performance Evaluation, how is 100% completion of a project defined?
Answer: Completion of the building project is defined as the stage in the progress of the work or designated portion thereof that is sufficiently completed in accordance with the contract documents so the owner can occupy or utilize the work for its intended use.
Is there a contractor directory?
Answer: Yes, there is an electronic directory that lists contractors and a status of their prequalification application. Click Here.
Can my company’s prequalification be revoked?
Answer: Yes, in a limited number of situations it is possible for the Department of Administrative Services to revoke a company’s prequalification. For more information on this process, click here for the PDF document, Administrative Hearing Process Regarding Revocation of Contractor’s Prequalification Classification.
Can I obtain prequalification for a Joint Venture?
Answer: No, DAS does not prequalify joint ventures or accept for initial prequalification contractor performance evaluations for projects completed by joint ventures. When a joint venture bids on projects requiring prequalification, both companies involved in the joint venture must be individually prequalified.