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The purpose of this web page is to acquaint interested vendors with the purchasing policies and procedures of the City of Crystal Lake. The following information will outline the various steps involved in obtaining orders and contracts for City purchases.

The City's objective is to purchase at the lowest possible cost so that the taxpayers receive the maximum value for each dollar spent. All qualified vendors are invited to share in the volume of City purchases, consisting of nearly every conceivable kind of merchandise.

In addition to complying with all federal, state, and local requirements concerning ethical conduct, City employees involved in the procurement process also subscribe to a code of ethics

How Does Crystal Lake Purchase?

The purchasing of goods and services is in accordance with the City’s ordinances and the Statutes of the State of Illinois. The City purchases in many ways, including: 

  1. Formal Bid Process
    All purchase orders of contracts of whatever nature, except as otherwise directed by the City Council will be subject to the open competitive bidding process for amounts in excess of ($20,000). The award of the bid shall be to the lowest responsible bidder, unless otherwise directed by City Council to be in the best interest to the City of Crystal Lake.
  2. Request for Proposal / Request for Qualifications
    The Request for Proposal (RFP) is the document used to secure offers when the procurement is of an estimated value of $20,000 or more and when competitive sealed bidding is not practical or advantageous. In some instances, a RFP is used when precise specifications cannot be developed. The Request for Qualifications (RFQ) is the document used to obtain a statement of qualifications from bidders before the final bid document is issued. After eliminating respondents who do not meet the criteria of the RFQ, the bid document is issued to those certified as qualified.
  3. Advertising of Bids
    Advertising of Bids shall include a general description of the articles, materials and/or services to be purchased or sold, and shall state the time and place of bid opening. Advertisements will appear in the Newspaper* or Online
  4. Invitation to Bid
    Invitation to Bid lists key elements of Bid packet including bid opening date and time. If a pre-bid meeting is needed it will be included within this document.

Additional Terms and Information

  • General Terms and Conditions: Instructions for completing the bid proposal.
  • Bid Deposit: A deposit may be required to accompany a bid as stated in the invitation to bid.
  • Questions: Clarification and interpretation of specifications must be directed to the individual listed in the solicitation request.
  • Submission of Bids: All bids must be sealed and properly labeled and submitted by the due date and time.
  • Prices: All prices are subjected to a Net 30 unless otherwise specified.
  • Insurance: All must state City as additionally insured except worker’s compensation and abide by minimums listed.
  • Proposal Page: Must be filled out and signed in order for the bid to be considered.
  • Prevailing Wage: Must be adhered to during the course of award when applicable in the specifications.
  • Affidavit of Compliance: Must comply prior to award of bid.
  • Bid Specifications: Project specifications, instructions to bidders, and requirements for bidding are included in the Formal Bid documents.
  • Bid Opening Procedure: All sealed bids with a signed proposal page shall be publicly opened by the Purchasing Officer or a representative, at the time stated in the legal notice (Invitation to Bid). All proposals shall be open to public inspection; and a tabulation of all bids received shall be made available upon request. City staff will be responsible for tabulating all proposals and will submit their recommendation to the City Council for appropriate action.
  • Awarding of Bids: The award will be to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder, or any other bidder determined by the City Council to be in the best interest of the City. The City reserves the right to accept or reject any or all bids.
  • Informal Bids: For all purchases under $20,000, it is the responsibility of the user departments/divisions to ascertain three competitive quotes. Contacting individual user departments is encouraged.

*Newspaper: A legal notice inviting vendors to submit bid proposals shall be published in the legal section of the Northwest Herald approximately (10) days prior to the bid opening date for all formal contracts over twenty thousand ($20,000) except where otherwise provided for in the Purchasing Policies and Procedures.