The Office of Contracting and Procurement, is the City's centralized procurement authority, responsible for the vast majority of the City government's acquisitions and purchases. It is responsible for obtaining the proper equipment, materials, and services needed for the City of Detroit municipal government. All purchases, in accordance with applicable ordinances, rules, and procedures, are done on a bid basis, with the lowest acceptable bid receiving award. Lowest acceptable bids are those that meet the specifications of the bid, at the lowest cost. The Office of Contracting and Procurement will reject all bids that do not meet specifications, regardless of the low bid.
The City of Detroit purchases goods and services under the following guidelines:
- Petty Cash – (up to $399.99) only one quote is required. Petty cash purchases are purchased and paid directly by the using department.
- Imprest Cash – ($400 – $1999.99) a minimum of three bids are required. Like Petty Cash, handled at departmental level, without approval from the Office of Contracting and Procurement.
- Informal Purchase – ($2,000 – $25,000) handled through the Office of Contracting and Procurement. There is no formal bid opening and only the successful bidder is notified of award.
- Formal Purchase – ($25,000.01 and above) handled through the Office of Contracting and Procurement. A formal bid opening is held and all bidders are notified by letter to whom the award was made. The winning vendor cannot be in arrears with Detroit Income or Property Taxes and must receive a clearance from the Human Rights Department (for bids above $15,000). All formal purchases require the approval of the Detroit City Council. Vendors may protest a bid award by contacting the Chief Procurement Officer by letter, prior to the City Council approval date.