§20-14-10. Purchasing and bidding procedures.

     (a) Whenever the authority proposes to purchase or contract for commodities or services reasonably anticipated to equal or exceed $2,500 in cost, the purchase or contract shall be based on competitive bids. Where the purchase of particular commodities or services is reasonably anticipated to be $25,000 or less, the executive director may, on behalf of the authority, solicit bids or price quotes in any manner that the executive director deems appropriate and the authority shall obtain its commodities or services by the lowest bid. In lieu of seeking bids or quotes for commodities or services in this price range, the authority may purchase those commodities and services pursuant to state master contracts as provided in section ten-e, article three, chapter five-a of this code.

     (b) Where the cost for the purchase of commodities or services is reasonably anticipated to exceed $25,000, the executive director shall solicit sealed bids for the commodities or services to be provided: Provided, That the executive director may permit bids by electronic transmission be accepted in lieu of sealed bids. Bids shall be solicited by public notice. The notice shall be published as a Class II legal advertisement in all participating counties in compliance with the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code and by such other means as the executive director deems appropriate. The notice shall state the general character of the work and general character of the materials to be furnished, the place where plans and specifications therefor may be examined and the time and place of receiving bids. After all bids are received, the authority shall enter into a written contract with the lowest responsible bidder; however, the authority may reject any or all bids that fail to meet the specifications required by the authority or that exceed the authority's budget estimation for those commodities or services. If the executive director determines in writing that there is only one responsive and responsible bidder and that there has been sufficient public notice to attract competitive bids, he or she may negotiate the price for a noncompetitive award or the specifications for a noncompetitive award based solely on the original purpose of the solicitation.

     (c) For any contract that exceeds $25,000 in total cost, the authority shall require the vendors to post a bond, with form and surety to be approved by the authority, in an amount equal to at least fifty percent of the contract price conditioned upon faithful performance and completion of the contract.

     (d) The bidding requirements specified in this section do not apply to any leases for real property upon which the authority makes improvements for public access to the recreation area, information distribution and welcome centers. This exemption does not apply to leases for offices, vehicle and heavy equipment storage or administrative facilities.

     (e) Any person who violates a provision of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be confined in jail not less than ten days nor more than one year, or fined not less than $10 nor more than $1000, or both confined and fined.