Chapter 261


Enacted 07/09/11





     Introduced By: Senators Perry, Miller, Nesselbush, DeVall, and Metts

     Date Introduced: March 24, 2011


It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:


     SECTION 1. Title 37 of the General Laws entitled "PUBLIC PROPERTY AND

WORKS" is hereby amended by adding thereto the following chapter:





          37-2.4-1. Definitions. -- The words defined in this section have the meanings set forth

below whenever they appear in this chapter, unless context in which they are used clearly requires

a different meaning or a different definition as prescribed for a particular section, group of

sections, or provision:     

     (1) "Board" means the habilitation procurement board created under this section;     

     (2) "Habilitation facility" means a program that is operated primarily for the purpose of

the employment and training of persons with a disability by a government agency or a qualified

organization licensed by the State of Rhode Island providing vocational rehabilitation to support

people with disabilities, and:     

     (i) Maintains an employment ratio of at least sixty percent (60%) of the program

employees under the procurement contract in question have severe disabilities;    

     (ii) Complies with any applicable occupational health and safety standards prescribed by

the United States department of labor or is a supported employment program approved by the

State of Rhode Island office of rehabilitation services;    

     (iii) Has its principal place of business in Rhode Island;    

     (iv) Produces any goods provided under this section in Rhode Island; and    

     (v) The services provided, in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, are provided

by individuals with the majority being domiciled residents of the State of Rhode Island.    

     (3) "Person with a disability" means any individual who has a severe physical or mental

impairment which constitutes a substantial barrier to employment, as certified by the department

of human services or the department of behavioral health care, developmental disabilities and



     37-2.4-2. Habilitation Procurement Board. -- (a) There is created the habilitation

procurement board within the division of purchasing and general services of the department of

administration. The board shall be composed of the following five (5) members:     

     (1) The chief purchasing officer as defined in subdivision 37-2-7(3) or his/her


     (2) The director of the department of behavioral healthcare, developmental disabilities

and hospitals created under title 40.1 or his/her designee;

     (3) The director of the department of human services created under title 40 or his/her


     (4) A person with a disability who shall be appointed to a three (3) year term by the

governor with the advice and consent of the senate;      

     (5) A representative of the private business community who shall be appointed to a three

(3) year term by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate;  

     (b) The board shall meet, as needed, to facilitate the procurement of goods and services

from habilitation facilities by a public procurement unit under this chapter by:     

     (1) Identifying goods and services that are available from habilitation facilities according

to the requirements under subsections 37-2.4-3(a),(b) and (c);     

     (2) Helping to ensure that the goods and services are provided at reasonable quality and

delivery levels;     

     (3) Recommending to the chief purchasing officer prices in accordance with subdivision

37-2.4-3(a)(3) for goods and services that are identified in subdivision (b)(1) of this section;

     (4) Developing, maintaining, and recommending to the chief purchasing officer a

preferred procurement contract list of goods and services identified and priced under subdivisions

(b)(1) and (2) of this section;     

     (5) Reviewing bids received by a habilitation facility and making a recommendation of

contract award to the chief purchasing officer, the awarding authority that will issue the final

purchase order and renew specified contracts for set contract times, without competitive bidding,

for the purchase of goods and services as provided for in section 37-2.4-3; and   

     (6) Collecting and reporting program data.     

     (c) The provisions of subsection 37-2.4-2(b) and subdivision 37-2.4-3(1) are an exception

to the procurement provisions under this chapter.

     (d) If two (2) or more certified habilitation facilities bid on the solicitation of services, the

purchasing agent, as defined in subdivision 37-2-7(19), of the state agency shall award a contract

to one of the certified habilitation facility based on a competitive price determination.

     (e) The board is authorized to create advisory committees to assist it in the performance

of the board’s responsibilities.   


     37 2.4-3. Purchasing. -- (a) This section shall not apply with respect to the procurement

of any commodity which is available for procurement from an entity established pursuant to

chapter 13-7 ("Prisoner Made Goods") or chapter 40-9 ("Services for People who are Blind or

Visually Impaired") of the general laws and as provided under subsection (e) of this section and

notwithstanding any provision in this chapter or the general or public laws to the contrary, any

state agency shall purchase goods and services produced by a habilitation facility using the

preferred procurement contract list approved pursuant to subdivision 37-2.4-2(b)(3) providing


     (1) The goods or services offered for sale by a habilitation facility reasonably conform to

the needs and specifications of the public procurement unit;

     (2) The habilitation facility can supply the goods or services within a reasonable time;


     (3) The price of the goods or services is reasonably competitive with the cost of

procuring the goods or services from another source.

     (b) If there is no price agreement in place that a state agency plans to use, a price can be

negotiated between the habilitation facility that can meet the specifications of the board. The

board will make a recommendation to the director of administration.

     (c) Existing multi-year contracts can continue through their term. New multi-year

requirements for services must follow the process for purchasing from the habilitation facility.

     (d) Each habilitation facility:

     (1) May submit a price for a product or service to the board at any time and not

necessarily in response to a request for bids; and

     (2) Shall certify on any bid it submits to the board or to a public procurement unit under

this section that is claiming a preference under this section.

     (e) During a fiscal year, the requirement for a public procurement unit to purchase goods

and services produced by a habilitation facility under the preferred procurement list under

subsections 37-2.4-4(a), (b) and (c) does not apply if the division of purchasing and general

services determines that the total amount of procurement contracts with habilitation facilities has

reached three million dollars ($3,000,000) for that fiscal year. The total amount of procurement

contracts can be changed with a recommendation by the board and approval from the director of


     (f) Any state agency that has awarded a solicitation for goods and services to a certified

habilitation facility shall, before the expiration of the term of the contract, renegotiate a fair and

reasonable price for the services with the certified habilitation facility that has performed the

services for the state agency. The state agency is not permitted to solicit new bids for the product

or service unless one of the following occurs:

     (1) The certified habilitation facility no longer wishes to perform the services for the state


     (2) The state agency decides to perform the services internally and hires employees who

will be employees of the state to perform the services;

     (3) The state agency no longer needs the service that was provided by the habilitation


     (4) The habilitation facility has not met the requirements for the services offered; or

     (5) The habilitation facility and the state agency are unable to agree to fair and reasonable

terms of a new contract for the habilitation facility’s services during the negotiation process.

     (g) Any state agency that has awarded a solicitation for services to a certified habilitation

facility shall report to the board regarding the progress of the solicitation once a year.


     SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.



LC01974/SUB A