New Jersey Statutes - Title 40A Municipalities and Counties - 40A:11-25 General power to provide qualification for bidders.
25. The governing body of any contracting unit may establish reasonable regulations appropriate for controlling the qualifications of prospective bidders upon contracts to be awarded on behalf of the contracting unit, by the class or category of goods or services to be provided or performed, which may fix the qualifications required according to the financial ability and experience of the bidders and the capital and equipment available to them pertinent to and reasonably related to the class or category of goods or services to be provided or performed in the performance of any such contract, and may require each bidder to furnish a statement thereof; and if such governing body is not satisfied with the qualifications of any bidder as founded upon such statement, it may refuse to furnish the bidder with any plans or specifications for any public contract or consider any bid made by the bidder for any contract.
Prior to the adoption of any such regulations, a contracting unit shall submit them to a public hearing. Notice of the hearing and a general description of the subject matter of the regulations to be adopted shall be published in not less than two newspapers circulating in the county or municipality in which the contracting unit is located. Publication shall precede by at least 20 days the date set in the notice for the hearing. The clerk or secretary of the governing body of the contracting unit shall keep a record of the proceedings and of the testimony of any citizen or prospective bidder. Within 10 days after the completion of the hearings, the proposed regulations and a true copy of the hearings shall be forwarded to the Director of the Division of Local Government Services for the director's approval. This approval shall be indicated by a letter from the director to the governing body of the contracting unit. If the director fails to approve or disapprove the regulations within 30 days of their receipt by the director, they shall take effect without the director's approval. The director may disapprove such proposed regulations only if the director finds that:
(a) They are written in a manner which will unnecessarily discourage full, free and open competition; or
(b) They unnecessarily restrict the participation of small businesses in the public bidding process; or
(c) They create undue preferences; or
(d) They violate any other provision of this act, or any other law.
If the director disapproves such proposed regulations within the 30-day period prescribed, they shall be of no force and effect and may not be required as a condition to the acceptance of a bid on any public contract by the contracting unit. Any appeal from a decision of the director to the Local Finance Board shall be subject to the provisions of the "Local Government Supervision Act (1947)", P.L.1947, c.151 (C.52:27BB-1 et seq.).
No qualification rating of any bidder shall be influenced by the bidder's race, religion, sex, national origin, nationality or place of residence or business.
Nothing contained in this act shall limit the right of any court to review a refusal to furnish any such plans or specifications or to consider any bid on any contract advertised.
Any such governing body may adopt a standard form of statement or questionnaire for bidders on public works contracts, and in such case their action shall be governed as provided herein.
L.1971,c.198,s.25; amended 1999, c.440, s.32.
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Last modified: February 14, 2012