Code Section Group

Public Contract Code - PCC

DIVISION 2. GENERAL PROVISIONS [1100 - 22355]

  ( Division 2 enacted by Stats. 1981, Ch. 306. )

PART 3. CONTRACTING BY LOCAL AGENCIES [20100 - 22178]

  ( Part 3 added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11. )

CHAPTER 1. Local Agency Public Construction Act [20100 - 20929]

  ( Chapter 1 added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11. )

ARTICLE 3.5. Counties [20120 - 20147]
  ( Heading of Article 3.5 amended by Stats. 1984, Ch. 1128, Sec. 8. )

20120.
  

This article applies to public works contracts awarded by counties subject to Title 3 (commencing with Section 23000) of the Government Code. For purposes of this article, the population of a county shall be the most recent estimate determined by the Population Research Unit of the Department of Finance.

(Amended by Stats. 1990, Ch. 164, Sec. 2.)

20121.
  

Whenever the estimated cost of construction of any wharf, chute, or other shipping facility, or of any hospital, almshouse, courthouse, jail, historical museum, aquarium, county free library building, branch library building, art gallery, art institute, exposition building, stadium, coliseum, sports arena or sports pavilion or other building for holding sports events, athletic contests, contests of skill, exhibitions, spectacles and other public meetings, or other public building or the cost of any painting, or repairs thereto exceeds the sum of four thousand dollars ($4,000), inclusive of the estimated costs of materials or supplies to be furnished pursuant to Section 20131, the work shall be done by contract. Any such contract not let pursuant to this article is void.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20121.1.
  

Notwithstanding Section 20121, a county board of supervisors need not contract for grading, drainage, pipe laying, fencing, landscaping, instrument installation, and similar construction and repair work necessary to maintain day-to-day landfill operations.

(Added by Stats. 1990, Ch. 907, Sec. 1.)

20122.
  

In counties containing a population of 500,000 or over, the work referred to in Section 20121 need not be done by contract if the estimated cost thereof is less than six thousand five hundred dollars ($6,500), exclusive of the estimated cost of materials or supplies to be furnished pursuant to Section 20133.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20123.
  

In counties containing a population of 2,000,000 or over, as determined by the last federal or special census or subsequent estimate validated by the Population Research Unit of the Department of Finance, Sections 20121 and 20122 do not apply to alteration or repair work upon county-owned buildings, if the cost of the work is under fifty thousand dollars ($50,000).

(Amended by Stats. 1988, Ch. 336, Sec. 1.)

20123.5.
  

In any county, it is unlawful to split or separate into smaller work orders or projects any public work project for the purpose of evading the provisions of this article requiring public work to be done by contract after competitive bidding. Every person who willfully violates the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20124.
  

The board of supervisors shall adopt plans, specifications, strain sheets, and working details for the work.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20125.
  

The board shall cause an advertisement for bids for the performance of the work to be published pursuant to Section 6062 of the Government Code in a daily newspaper, or pursuant to Section 6066 of the Government Code in a weekly newspaper, of general circulation published in the county. If there is no such newspaper published in the county, the notice shall be given by posting in three public places for at least two weeks.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20126.
  

Any notice inviting bids which specifies locations of possible materials, such as a borrow pit or gravel bed, for use in the proposed construction project which would be subject to Section 1602 of the Fish and Game Code shall include any conditions or modifications established pursuant to Section 1603 of the Fish and Game Code.

(Amended by Stats. 2005, Ch. 383, Sec. 9. Effective January 1, 2006.)

20127.
  

All bidders shall be afforded opportunity to examine the plans, specifications, strain sheets, and working details.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20128.
  

The board shall award the contract to the lowest responsible bidder, and the person to whom the contract is awarded shall perform the work in accordance with the plans, specifications, strain sheets, and working details, unless the contract is modified by a four-fifths vote of the board.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20128.5.
  

Notwithstanding any other provisions of this article, the board of supervisors may award individual annual contracts, none of which shall exceed three million dollars ($3,000,000), adjusted annually to reflect the percentage change in the California Consumer Price Index, for repair, remodeling, or other repetitive work to be done according to unit prices. No annual contracts may be awarded for any new construction. The contracts shall be awarded to the lowest responsible bidder and shall be based on plans and specifications for typical work. No project shall be performed under the contract except by order of the board of supervisors, or an officer acting pursuant to Section 20145.

For purposes of this section, “unit price” means the amount paid for a single unit of an item of work, and “typical work” means a work description applicable universally or applicable to a large number of individual projects, as distinguished from work specifically described with respect to an individual project.

For purposes of this section, “repair, remodeling, or other repetitive work to be done according to unit prices” shall not include design or contract drawings.

(Amended by Stats. 1997, Ch. 431, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1998.)

20129.
  

(a) All bids for construction work shall be presented under sealed cover and shall be accompanied by one of the following forms of bidder’s security:

(1) Cash.

(2) A cashier’s check made payable to the county.

(3) A certified check made payable to the county.

(4) A bidder’s bond executed by an admitted surety insurer, made payable to the county.

Upon an award to the lowest bidder, the security of an unsuccessful bidder shall be returned in a reasonable period of time, but in no event shall that security be held by the county beyond 60 days from the time the award is made.

(b) The person to whom the contract is awarded shall execute a bond to be approved by the board for the faithful performance of the contract.

(Amended by Stats. 1990, Ch. 808, Sec. 5.)

20130.
  

If the board of supervisors is advised by the county surveyor or engineer that any wharf, chute, or other shipping facility can be constructed or repaired for a sum less than the lowest responsible bid, it may reject all bids and order the work done by day’s work under the supervision and direction of the surveyor or engineer.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20131.
  

Counties which employ purchasing agents may:

(a) Authorize the agent to employ state-licensed independent contractors and purchase materials, furnishings, and supplies used in the construction or repair of public works estimated as costing not more than six thousand five hundred dollars ($6,500) without the formality of obtaining bids, letting contracts, preparing specifications, and the other things required by this article.

(b) In counties containing a population of 500,000 or more, authorize the agent to purchase materials and supplies used in the construction or repair of public works estimated as costing not more than three thousand five hundred dollars ($3,500) without the formality of obtaining bids, letting contracts, preparing specifications, and the other things required by this article.

(c) Authorize the agent to purchase or contract for medical or surgical equipment or supplies, or for professional services, for a county hospital without competitive bidding, so long as an appropriation for the costs of those purchases or contracts is included in the county budget.

As used in this subdivision, “medical or surgical equipment or supplies” means only equipment or supplies commonly, necessarily, and directly used by or under the direction of a physician and surgeon in caring for or treating a patient in a hospital.

(Added by Stats. 1993, Ch. 1195, Sec. 22.5. Effective January 1, 1994.)

20132.
  

The board of supervisors of any county may delegate to the county administrative officer or the county executive officer in an equivalent position, the power to enter into and execute on behalf of the county any contracts, which do not involve the expenditure of more than five thousand dollars ($5,000), which relate to purposes previously approved and budgeted by the board of supervisors, subject to ratification of such approval and execution by the board of supervisors. This section shall not apply to:

(a) Matters within the purview of Section 20131.

(b) Contracts for the construction of public improvements.

(c) Contracts which must be awarded after public notice and competitive bidding.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20134.
  

(a) In cases of emergency, when repair or replacements are necessary to permit the continued conduct of county operations or services, the board of supervisors, by majority consent, may proceed at once to replace or repair any and all structures without adopting the plans, specifications, strain sheets, or working details or, subject to Chapter 2.5 (commencing with Section 22050), giving notice for bids to let contracts. If notice for bids to let contracts will not be given, the board shall comply with Chapter 2.5 (commencing with Section 22050). The work may be done by day labor under the direction of the board, by contract, or by a combination of the two. If the work is done wholly or in part by contract, the contractor shall be paid the actual cost of the use of machinery and tools and of material, and labor and of workers’ compensation insurance expended by him or her in doing the work, plus not more than 15 percent to cover all profits and administration. No more than the lowest current market prices shall be paid for materials whenever possible.

(b) In a county of the first, second, third, or fourth class, which is under court order to relieve jail overcrowding or in which the sheriff certifies that the inmate capacity of the county jail system is exceeded by more than 20 percent and that the overpopulation is likely to continue and poses a threat to public safety, health, and welfare, the board of supervisors may contract for the construction or expansion of jail facilities without the formality of obtaining bids, adopting plans and specifications, or complying with other requirements of this article, except as required by this subdivision. The person to whom the contract is awarded shall execute a bond for faithful performance in accordance with Section 20129. Any plans and specifications adopted by the board may only be altered or changed in accordance with Section 20135 and all contracts awarded pursuant to this subdivision may only be altered or changed in accordance with Sections 20136, 20137, and 20138. The award of the contract shall be made after a public hearing on the basis of a request for proposals advertised in accordance with Section 6062 or 6062a of the Government Code. The contract may be awarded only to a contractor who has responded to the request for proposals and who is licensed to do the work in accordance with Chapter 9 (commencing with Section 7000) of Division 3 of the Business and Professions Code. The contract shall be upon terms which the board determines are necessary for the expeditious completion of the work. A contract shall not be entered into unless at least three proposals to do the work have been evaluated by a competitive process established by the board. If the board does not select the lowest bid, it shall make a finding stating the reasons that the lowest bid was not selected.

(c) In any county that has agreed to permit the transfer of prisoners or parole violators under Section 2910 or 2910.5 of the Penal Code or of wards under Section 1753.3 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, the board of supervisors may contract for the construction or expansion of the facilities to be used for that purpose without the formality of obtaining bids, adopting plans and specifications, or complying with other requirements of this article, except as required by this subdivision. The person to whom the contract is awarded shall execute a bond for faithful performance in accordance with Section 20129. Any plans and specifications adopted by the board may only be altered or changed in accordance with Section 20135 and all contracts awarded pursuant to this subdivision may only be altered or changed in accordance with Sections 20136, 20137, and 20138. The award of the contract shall be made after a public hearing on the basis of a request for proposals advertised in accordance with Section 6062 or 6062a of the Government Code. The contract may be awarded only to a contractor who has responded to the request for proposals and who is licensed to do the work in accordance with Chapter 9 (commencing with Section 7000) of Division 3 of the Business and Professions Code. The contract shall be upon terms which the board determines are necessary for the expeditious completion of the work. A contract shall not be entered into unless at least three proposals to do the work have been evaluated by a competitive process established by the board and the lowest bid is selected.

(d) Proposed construction or expansion of jail or return-to-custody facilities as authorized under subdivision (b) or (c) shall not commence in a county of the third class without the affirmative vote of a majority of the city council of the incorporated city within which the construction or expansion is proposed.

(e) The board of supervisors may waive the requirements of Title 3 (commencing with Section 9000) of Part 6 of Division 4 of the Civil Code for work performed pursuant to subdivision (b) or (c).

(f) If any county that is under court order to relieve overcrowding in a county juvenile facility, as defined by subdivision (c) of Section 4481 of the Penal Code or in which the chief probation officer certifies that the juvenile detention capacity of the county juvenile facilities is exceeded by more than 20 percent and that the overpopulation is likely to continue and poses a threat to public safety, health, and welfare, the board of supervisors may contract for the construction or expansion of county juvenile facilities without the formality of obtaining bids, adopting plans and specifications, or complying with other requirements of this article, except as required by this subdivision. The person to whom the contract is awarded shall execute a bond for faithful performance in accordance with Section 20129. Any plans and specifications adopted by the board may only be altered or changed in accordance with Section 20135 and all contracts awarded pursuant to this subdivision may only be altered or changed in accordance with Sections 20136, 20137, and 20138. The award of the contract shall be made after a public hearing on the basis of a request for proposals advertised in accordance with Section 6062 or 6062a of the Government Code. The contract may be awarded only to a contractor who has responded to the request for proposals and who is licensed to do the work in accordance with Chapter 9 (commencing with Section 7000) of Division 3 of the Business and Professions Code. The contract shall be upon terms which the board determines are necessary for the expeditious completion of the work. A contract shall not be entered into unless at least three proposals to do the work have been evaluated by a competitive process established by the board. If the board does not select the lowest bidder, it shall make a finding stating the reasons that the lowest bidder was not selected.

(g) In a county of the third class in which there are no available courtrooms to accommodate all authorized judicial positions or in which the board of supervisors certifies that there is a significant need to expeditiously construct new court and court support facilities, the board of supervisors may contract for the construction or expansion of court and court support facilities without the formality of obtaining bids, adopting plans and specifications, or complying with other requirements of this article, except as required by this subdivision. The person to whom the contract is awarded shall execute a bond for faithful performance in accordance with Section 20129. Any plans and specifications adopted by the board may only be altered or changed in accordance with Section 20135 and all contracts awarded pursuant to this subdivision may only be altered or changed in accordance with Sections 20136, 20137, and 20138. The award of the contract shall be made after a public hearing on the basis of a request for proposals advertised in accordance with Section 6062 or 6062a of the Government Code. The contract may be awarded only to a contractor who has responded to the request for proposals and who is licensed to do the work in accordance with Chapter 9 (commencing with Section 7000) of Division 3 of the Business and Professions Code. The contract shall be upon terms which the board determines are necessary for the expeditious completion of the work. A contract shall not be entered into unless at least three proposals to do the work have been evaluated by a competitive process established by the board and the lowest bid is selected. This subdivision shall remain in effect until December 31, 1994.

(Amended by Stats. 2010, Ch. 697, Sec. 48. (SB 189) Effective January 1, 2011. Operative July 1, 2012, by Sec. 105 of Ch. 697.)

20135.
  

The plans and specifications adopted by the board for the erection, alteration, construction, or repair of any public building or other public structure shall not be altered or changed in any manner which increases its cost, except by a vote of two-thirds of the members of the board of supervisors.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20136.
  

Whenever the board enters into a contract for the erection, construction, alteration, or repair of any public building or other structure, the contract shall not be altered or changed in any manner, except:

(a) As provided in Section 20142.

(b) As provided for in the contract itself, or specifications.

(c) By order adopted by a vote of two-thirds of the board, and the consent of the contractor.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20137.
  

If any change or alteration of the contract is ordered, it shall be specified in writing by a duly authorized officer of the county. The cost of such change or alteration must be agreed upon between the board and the contractor unless the contract includes a provision to determine a fair and equitable price for the change or alteration. Such a provision may provide for any method of determining the price common in commercial transactions, including, but not limited to, arbitration or cost plus a fixed fee. If the cost so agreed upon:

(a) Does not exceed the amounts specified in Sections 20121 and 21031, or

(b) Does not exceed 10 percent of the original contract price, the board may authorize the contractor to proceed with the change or alteration without the formality of obtaining bids therefor.

No change or alteration shall be authorized the amount of which is within the limitation specified in subdivision (b) and in excess of the limitation specified in subdivision (a) except by four-fifths vote of the board.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20138.
  

If the cost of the work is reduced by reason of any modification of the contract, compensation shall be made to the county therefor.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20139.
  

The board shall not pay or become liable for any extra work done on, or extra material furnished for, any building or structure in the course of performance of a contract let pursuant to this article except in accordance with Section 20142, unless the contract specifically provides for such payment or the contract is changed or modified in the manner provided for in this article.

(Amended by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1019, Sec. 36.)

20140.
  

The method of payment for construction contracts shall be determined by the board, including progress payments for completed portions of the work and for materials delivered on the ground or stored subject to the control of the board and unused.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20141.
  

The provisions of this article shall not apply to the construction of any public building used for facilities of juvenile forestry camps or juvenile homes, ranches or camps established under Article 15 (commencing with Section 880) of Chapter 2 of Part 1 of Division 2 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, if a major portion of the construction work is to be performed by wards of the juvenile court assigned to such camps, ranches, or homes.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20142.
  

(a) The board of supervisors may, by ordinance, resolution, or board order, authorize the county engineer, or other county officer, to order changes or additions in the work being performed under construction contracts. When so authorized, any change or addition in the work shall be ordered in writing by the county engineer, or other designated officer, and the extra cost to the county for any change or addition to the work so ordered shall not exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) when the total amount of the original contract does not exceed fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), nor 10 percent of the amount of any original contract that exceeds fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), but does not exceed two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000).

(b) For contracts whose original cost exceeds two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000), the extra cost for any change or addition to the work so ordered shall not exceed twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000), plus 5 percent of the amount of the original contract cost in excess of two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000). In no event shall any such change or alteration exceed two hundred ten thousand dollars ($210,000).

(Amended by Stats. 2010, Ch. 699, Sec. 31. (SB 894) Effective January 1, 2011.)

20143.
  

The board may cause the insertion of provisions in any contract for the erection, construction, alteration, or repair of any public building or structure, or in the specifications therefor, for the performance of such extra work and the furnishing of materials therefor by the contractor as the board, county engineer, or other duly authorized officer requires for the proper completion or construction of the whole work contemplated.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20144.
  

The provisions of this article do not apply to any contract which is entered into between Napa County and the State of California or any agency of the executive department of the State of California, for the alteration or repair of the structure located in Napa County and known as the Old Bale Mill.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20145.
  

In counties containing a population of 6,000,000 or over, the board of supervisors may by ordinance authorize such county officer as is deemed appropriate to take or perform any or all acts or actions permitted or required of the board by this article, including the authority to adopt and advertise plans and specifications, award contracts, approve bonds, or order the change or alteration of contracts, with respect to original contracts which do not exceed the total amount of seventy-five thousand dollars ($75,000), or with respect to changes or alterations to original contracts entered into by the board where the changes or alterations do not exceed 10 percent of the amount of the original contract or seventy-five thousand dollars ($75,000), whichever is less. The aggregate total amount of such changes or alterations to an original contract may not exceed 25 percent of the amount of the original contract. Any authorization pursuant to this section shall include detailed procedures governing the county officer in the exercise of such authority.

(Added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 465, Sec. 11.)

20146.
  

(a) A county, with approval of the board of supervisors, may utilize construction manager at-risk construction contracts for the erection, construction, alteration, repair, or improvement of any building owned or leased by the county. A construction manager at-risk construction contract may be used only for projects in the county in excess of one million dollars ($1,000,000) and may be awarded using either the lowest responsible bidder or best value method to a construction manager at-risk entity that possesses or that obtains sufficient bonding to cover the contract amount for construction services and risk and liability insurance as may be required by the county. Any payment or performance bond written for the purposes of this section shall be written using a bond form developed by the county.

(b) For purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:

(1) “Best value” means a value determined by objective criteria related to the experience of the entity and project personnel, project plan, financial strength of the entity, safety record of the entity, and price.

(2) “Construction manager at-risk contract” means a competitively procured contract by a county with an individual, partnership, joint venture, corporation, or other recognized legal entity, that is appropriately licensed in this state, including a contractor’s license issued by the Contractors’ State License Board, and that guarantees the cost of a project and furnishes construction management services, including, but not limited to, preparation and coordination of bid packages, scheduling, cost control, value engineering, evaluation, preconstruction services, and construction administration.

(c) (1) A construction manager at-risk entity shall not be prequalified or shortlisted or awarded a contract unless the entity provides an enforceable commitment to the county that the entity and its subcontractors at every tier will use a skilled and trained workforce to perform all work on the project or contract that falls within an apprenticeable occupation in the building and construction trades, in accordance with Chapter 2.9 (commencing with Section 2600) of Part 1.

(2) This subdivision shall not apply if any of the following conditions are met:

(A) The county has entered into a project labor agreement that will bind all contractors and subcontractors performing work on the project or contract to use a skilled and trained workforce, and the entity agrees to be bound by that project labor agreement.

(B) The project or contract is being performed under the extension or renewal of a project labor agreement that was entered into by the county before January 1, 2018.

(C) The entity has entered into a project labor agreement that will bind the entity and all its subcontractors at every tier performing the project or contract to use a skilled and trained workforce.

(3) For purposes of this subdivision, “project labor agreement” has the same meaning as in paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 2500.

(d) Subcontractors that were not listed by a construction manager at-risk entity as partners, general partners, or association members in a partnership, limited partnership, or association in the entity’s construction manager at-risk bid submission shall be awarded by the construction manager at-risk entity in accordance with the process set forth by the county. All subcontractors bidding on contracts pursuant to this section shall be afforded the protections contained in Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 4100) of Part 1. The construction manager at-risk entity shall do both of the following:

(1) Provide public notice of the availability of work to be subcontracted in accordance with the publication requirements applicable to the competitive bidding process of the county.

(2) Provide a fixed date and time on which the subcontracted work will be awarded in accordance with the procedure established pursuant to this section.

(e) A county that elects to proceed under this section and uses a construction manager at-risk contract for a building project shall make a copy of the contract available for public inspection on its Internet Web site and notify the appropriate policy committees of the Legislature with instructions on finding and accessing the stored contract.

(f) (1) If the county elects to award a project pursuant to this section, retention proceeds withheld by the county from the construction manager at-risk entity shall not exceed 5 percent if a performance and payment bond issued by an admitted surety insurer is required in the solicitation of bids.

(2) In a contract between the construction manager at-risk entity and any subcontractor, and in a contract between a subcontractor and any subcontractor thereunder, the percentage of the retention proceeds withheld shall not exceed the percentage specified in the contract between the county and the construction manager at-risk entity. If the construction manager at-risk entity provides written notice to any subcontractor that is not a member of the construction manager at-risk entity, before or at the time the bid is requested, that a bond may be required and the subcontractor subsequently is unable or refuses to furnish a bond to the construction manager at-risk entity, then the construction manager at-risk entity may withhold retention proceeds in excess of the percentage specified in the contract between the county and the construction manager at-risk entity from any payment made by the construction manager at-risk entity to the subcontractor.

(g) If the county elects to award a project pursuant to this section, the contract between the county and construction manager at-risk entity shall be subject to subdivision (b) of Section 2782 of the Civil Code. Any contract between the construction manager at-risk entity and a contractor or subcontractor shall be subject to Section 2782.05 of the Civil Code.

(h) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2023, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2023, deletes or extends that date.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 821, Sec. 1. (AB 851) Effective January 1, 2018. Repealed as of January 1, 2023, by its own provisions.)

20147.
  

(a) Notwithstanding any other law, this article shall not apply to a contract entered into by the County of San Diego with a private entity for the delivery of a regional communications system and any related infrastructure to be used by public safety agencies and emergency responders located in the Counties of Imperial and San Diego.

(b) The County of San Diego may use any competitive procurement method to procure the regional communications systems and related infrastructure described in subdivision (a), provided that if the County of San Diego does not use a procurement method otherwise available to it under this article, the procurement shall be a best value procurement. “Best value” means a value determined by evaluation of objective criteria related to price, functional specifications and features, technical specifications and features, implementation plan, life-cycle costs and support, experience, past performance, and fiscal stability. A best value determination may entail selection of the lowest priced technically acceptable proposal or selection of the best proposal for a fixed price established by the procuring agency, or it may consist of a tradeoff between price and other specified factors.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 45, Sec. 1. (AB 2149) Effective January 1, 2015.)

PCCPublic Contract Code - PCC3.5.