10.24.2011
Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act Bid Threshold Increases

For those school and community college districts (and other public agencies) that have opted into the California Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act ("UCAA"), at Public Contract Code Section 22000 et seq., your flexibility just increased.  Back on July 1, 2011, Assembly Bill 943 increased the formal bidding threshold amount for public agencies that have opted into UCAA from $125,000 to $175,000.  Correspondingly, the safe harbor triggered when all bids received exceed the formal bidding threshold, and the governing body of the public agency adopts a resolution by a four-fifths vote to award informally within the safe harbor, rose from $137,500 to $187,500.

This helps UCAA keep pace with increasing construction costs to accomplish its purpose: to simplify and unify bidding procedures and cost accounting standards on public works projects.  For those public agencies that have opted in (or do opt in), according to specific statutory procedures, UCAA offers greater flexibility for awarding public works contracts up to the (now) $175,000… and even more flexibility for smaller public works contracts, as an award of up to $30,000 can be made without any bidding by those agencies that have opted into UCAA.

Still, there are formal, statutory requirements for opting into UCAA and for the alternative bidding processes - informal from $30,000 to $175,000, and formal for public works contracts over that amount and outside the safe harbor - including adopting certain prescribed accounting procedures. For more on this option that many public agencies have found useful in their facilities programs, check out our recent Alert here.

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