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University of Houston - Victoria

Purchasing Department

Vendor Protest Procedures

  1. (a) Any actual or prospective bidder, offeror, or contractor who is aggrieved in connection with the solicitation, evaluation, or award of a contract may formally protest to the Director of Business Services. Such protests must be in writing and received in the Director's office within 5 working days after such aggrieved person knows, or should have known of the occurrence of the action, which is protested. Formal protests must conform to the requirements of this subsection and subsection (c) of this section, and shall be resolved in accordance with the procedure set forth in subsections (d) and (e) of this section.
  2. (b) In the event of a timely protest or appeal under this section, the university shall not proceed further with the solicitation or with the award of the contract unless the Vice President for Administration and Finance after consultation with the requisitioning department and the Director, makes a written determination that the award of contract without delay is necessary to protect substantial interests of the university.
  3. (c) A formal protest must be in writing, signed and contain:
    1. (1) a specific identification of the statutory or regulatory provision(s) (if any) that the action complained of is alleged to have violated;
    2. (2) a specific description of each act alleged to have been violated;
    3. (3) a precise statement of the relevant facts;
    4. (4) an identification of the issue or issues to be resolved;
    5. (5) argument and authorities in support of the protest; and
    6. (6) a statement that copies of the protest have been mailed or delivered to the university and other identifiable interested parties.
  4. (d) The Director shall have the authority, prior to appeal to the Vice President for Administration and Finance to settle and resolve the dispute concerning the solicitation or award of a contract. The Director may solicit written responses to the protest from other interested parties.
  5. (e) If the protest is not resolved by mutual agreement, the Director will issue a written determination on the protest.
    1. (1) If the Director determines that no violation of rules or statutes has occurred, he shall so inform the protesting party, the requisitioning department, and other interested parties by letter, which sets forth the reasons for the determination.
    2. (2) If the Director determines that a violation of the rules or statutes has occurred in a case where a contract has not been awarded, he shall so inform the protesting party, the requisitioning department, and other interested parties by letter which sets forth the reasons for the determination and the appropriate remedial action.
    3. (3) If the Director determines that a violation of the rules or statutes has occurred in a case where a contract has been awarded, he shall so inform the protesting party, the requisitioning department, and other interested parties by letter which sets forth the reasons for the determination, which may include ordering the contract void.
  6. (f) The Director's determination on a protest may be appealed by an interested party to the Vice President for Administration and Finance. An appeal of the Director's determination must be in writing and must be received in the Vice President for Administration and Finance office no later than 5 working days after the date of the Director's determination. If an oral presentation is requested it shall be done at this time and in conjunction with the appeal. The appeal shall be limited to review of the Director's determination. Copies of the appeal must be mailed or delivered by the appealing party, to the university and other interested parties and must contain an affidavit that such copies have been provided.
  7. (g) The Office of the General Counsel shall review the protest, Director's determination, and the appeal and prepare a written opinion with recommendation to the Vice President for Administration and Finance. The Vice President for Administration and Finance may, in his discretion, refer the matter to the President for consideration or issue a written decision on the protest.
  8. (h) When a protest has been appealed to the Vice President for Administration and Finance, under subsection (f) of this section and has been referred to the President under subsection (g) of this section, the following requirements shall apply.
    1. (1) Copies of the appeal, responses of interested parties, if any, shall be sent to the President.
    2. (2) The President may consider oral presentations and written documents presented by staff and interested parties. The Vice President for Administration and Finance shall set the order and amount of time allowed for presentations.
    3. (3) The President's determination of the appeal shall be final.
  9. (i) Unless good cause for delay is shown or the President determines that a protest or appeal raises issues significant to purchasing and contracting practices or procedures, a protest or appeal that is not filed timely will not be considered.
  10. (j) A decision issued either by the President or by the Vice President for Administration and Finance, shall be the final administrative action of the university.