Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives
in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same,
Chapter 29 of the General Laws is hereby amended by striking out section 8B, as appearing in the 1992 Official Edition, and inserting in place thereof the following section:-
Section 8B. The commissioner of highways or the commissioner of the metropolitan district commission shall require that any person proposing to bid on any work, excepting the construction, reconstruction, repair or alteration of buildings, to be awarded by the department of highways or by the metropolitan district commission, respectively, and the commissioner of highways shall require that any person proposing to bid on any such work to be awarded by a municipality under section thirty-four of chapter ninety, submit a statement under the penalties of perjury setting forth his qualifications to perform such work. Such statement shall be in such detail and form and shall be submitted at such times as such commissioner may prescribe under rules promulgated by said department or commission, respectively, subject to the requirements of chapter thirty A. Such rules may require such information as may be necessary to implement this section and may establish a basis for the classification and maximum capacity rating of bidders which shall determine the class and aggregate amount of work such bidders are qualified to perform. The statement shall set forth, among other matters that may be prescribed by the rules, the proposed bidders's financial resources, his current bonding capacity, his experience, the number and kinds of equipment which he has for use on such work, and the number, size and completion dates of other construction jobs, whether in this state or another state, which he has under contract. The information contained within such statement, together with other relevant available information and the proposed bidder's past performance on work of a similar nature, may be considered by said department or commission in determining whether or not the proposed bidder is qualified to perform any specific work for which proposals to bid are invited.
Based on information received and available and on past performance of the prospective bidder on work of a similar nature, each such commissioner, acting through a prequalification committee consisting of engineering personnel of said department or commission, respectively, to be appointed by him, shall determine the class and aggregate amount of work that a prospective bidder is qualified to perform, and shall limit a proposed bidder to such class and aggregate amount of work as he may be qualified to perform. Said aggregate amount of work shall not be less than the amount of the bidder's current bonding capacity, as verified to the commissioner's satisfaction, by a surety company incorporated pursuant to section one hundred and five of chapter one hundred and seventy-five, or authorized to do business in the commonwealth under section one hundred and six of said chapter one hundred and seventy-five, and satisfactory to the commissioner. Said department or commission shall limit the bid proposals to be furnished to a prospective bidder to such bidders as are determined by its commissioner to have the classification and capacity rating to perform the work required.
Any such statement filed with either such commissioner by a prospective bidder shall be confidential, and shall be used only by the department of highways or the metropolitan district commission, as the case may be, in determining the qualifications of such prospective bidder to perform work for said department or commission, or for a municipality under the provisions of said section thirty-four. No information contained in such statement shall be imparted to any other person without the written consent of said bidder.
If any prospective bidder fails to file the statement required by this section, or if, in the judgment of the commissioner, the prospective bidder is not qualified to carry out the work required under a contract which is proposed to be awarded, the commissioner shall refuse to furnish such prospective bidder with bid proposals for such work and shall reject any bid by such prospective bidder for such work.
Only persons filing the statement required herein shall be authorized as prime contractors and then only as to the class and aggregate amount of work which their qualifications warrant.
Any bidder qualified as authorized herein shall be promptly notified by the commissioner.
Any prospective bidder who is aggrieved by any decision or determination of the prequalification committee or the commissioner which affects his right to bid may file a new application for qualification at any time, or within fifteen days after receiving notice of such decision the applicant may request in writing a hearing before an appeal board to reconsider his application or qualifications. The appeal board in the department of highways shall consist of the commissioner, the associate commissioners and the chief engineer of highways, or their designees, and the appeal board in the metropolitan district commission shall consist of the commissioner, the associate commissioners, and the director or chief engineer of the division involved, or their designees.
Any bidder or prospective bidder who so requests shall be granted a hearing by such appeal board at which he may submit any and all additional information or evidence bearing upon his finances, current bonding capacity, experience or other qualifications which may be relevant thereto. Such hearing shall be held without delay and the board shall promptly render its decision after taking into consideration all relevant information or evidence submitted relating to the bidder's qualifications. The appeal board may modify, amend or reverse any previous decision of the prequalification committee or the commissioner with respect to the qualification of the applicant or may sustain such previous decision. Such hearing shall be deemed to be an adjudicatory proceeding, and any bidder or prospective bidder who is aggrieved by the decision of the appeal board shall have a right to judicial review under the applicable provisions of said chapter thirty A.
The commissioner of highways or the commissioner of the metropolitan district commission shall not consider any bid filed with him by any person for any contract to be awarded by said department or commission, respectively, who has not been qualified as required by the rules promulgated by said department or commission, and any such bid of any unqualified bidder may be rejected without being opened. No contract shall be awarded to any bidder not qualified to bid thereon at the time fixed for receiving bids.
Any person, firm or corporation who knowingly and willfully makes, or causes to be made, any false or fraudulent statement in any application for qualification filed with such department or commission as required herein shall, upon final conviction, be disqualified from submitting bids on contracts advertised by the department or commission for a period of one year following the date of said conviction.
This section shall not apply to any prospective bidder the aggregate amount of whose work with said department of highways or with said metropolitan district commission, including the amount of his proposal, is less than fifty thousand dollars.