DEADLINE: Wednesday, February 24, 2021, 11:00 A.M.

The Salem County Purchasing Agent requests sealed proposals for Entering into a Lease Agreement for Operation of the Salem County Railroad Branch Line for the County of Salem.

Request for Proposal packages may be obtained daily between 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM from the Salem County Purchasing Department, 110 5th Street, Suite 400, Salem, New Jersey, 08079 or they will be mailed or e-mail upon telephone request (856) 935-7510, Extension 8203 or e-mail request to .

Proposals shall be made and submitted in the manner detailed and prescribed in the Request for Proposal package. They shall be enclosed in sealed envelopes bearing the legend,

Proposal for Entering into a Lease Agreement for Operation of the Salem County Railroad Branch Line for the County of Salem” on the outermost package. The proposals shall be returned to the Salem County Purchasing Agent by Wednesday, February 24, 2021, 11:00 a.m., prevailing time, when they will be opened and read in public. Late proposal submissions or those that are directed to a place and location other than that specified, will not be considered. The information to be submitted in order to be considered is outlined in the Request for Proposal document.

The County reserves the right to establish a minimum lease fee for provision of the services described herein and further reserves the right to reject all proposals should the minimum lease fee for providing such services, if so established, not be provided.

Respondents are required to comply with the requirements of P.L. 1975, C. 127 (N.J.A.C. 17:27) Affirmative Action.

The Vendor will be required to comply with requirements of N.J.S.A. 10:2-1 (Anti-Discrimination in Employment), P.L. 1975, C. 127 (N.J.A.C. 17:27) Affirmative Action; N.J.S.A. 10:5-31 et seq. and N.J.A.C.17:27 et seq.  (Equal Employment Opportunity), 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq. (Americans with Disabilities Act), N.J.S.A. 52:32-44 (New Jersey Business Registration), and all respondents will be required to comply with the requirements of N.J.S.A. 52:25-24.2 regarding the submission of a list of all Stockholders, Members or Partners owning more than ten percent (10%) stock or interest in their Corporation, Limited Liability Company or Partnership.

The Contractors and subcontractors must provide a copy of their State of New Jersey Business Registration Certificate issued by the New Jersey Department of Treasury prior to the time a contract is awarded or authorized.

The County reserves the right to consider the proposals for sixty (60) days after receipt thereof, and further reserves the right to reject all proposals, waive minor informalities, in accordance with applicable law.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION RELATIVE TO THE PROPOSAL OPENING

In lieu of dropping off proposal packages in person we strongly request you use the US Postal System-Certified Mail, Fed Ex, UPS or other mail delivery partner that will be able to confirm receipt of delivery. Salem County continues to receive mail and deliveries on a daily basis. If you appear in person to drop off proposal packages, you MUST call Salem County Purchasing at (856) 935-7510 x 8401 one day in advance in order to be registered to enter the building. You will be limited only into the lobby to drop off proposal packages.

At the present time, Salem County has decided NOT to postpone or cancel any scheduled bid/proposal opening. We are closely monitoring the evolution of the COVID-19 Pandemic and will issue an addendum should any change be necessary in our Bid/Proposal Acceptance schedule or process. N.J.S.A 40A:11-23 requires Salem County to conduct a physical “public opening”. Salem County will offer a public space at Salem County Office Complex at 110 5th Street, Conference Room 105, Salem, NJ 08079 that enables us to adhere to the “Social Distancing” mandates outlined in the Governor Murphy’s Executive Order 107 and any other directive that may be in place at the time of the bid/proposal opening.  However, in order to safeguard all parties involved, we have restricted public access to our buildings and require ALL visitors to call in advance and schedule time with the respective department in order to gain access to our facilities. This includes dropping off proposal packages and attendance in person at proposal openings.

In the interest of providing the most flexibility to interested parties and to adhere to the “Social Distancing” and “Re-opening” directives, Salem County will also provide the availability for all interested parties to participate in the proposal opening by conference call. Ten minutes before the scheduled opening, we will open a toll-free phone line that you will be able to access by calling (605) 313-4433. When prompted enter access code 237016#. Before the bid/proposal opening you will be asked to state your name and organization so it can be recorded on the sign-in sheet and you will be noted as participating remotely.

If you choose to attend the proposal opening in person you assume all risk of any potential exposures.  If you plan to attend the proposal opening in person, you MUST call Salem County Purchasing at (856) 935-7510 x 8401 no later than February 23, 2021 at 9:00 am. At that time, you will be asked a series of questions prior to being registered to gain entry to the building. Upon your arrival at the building you will have your temperature recorded by our Sheriff’s Officers. You will be limited access only to the conference room for the proposal opening. No other access throughout the building will be permitted.

After proposals are opened, they will be reviewed by an evaluation team established by the Salem County Administrator and presented to the Salem County Board of County Commissioners, who shall award the contract for the services.  The award of the Contract will be based on the following criteria: (i) responsiveness to the required submissions as outlined in the Request for Proposal; (ii) general experience and reputation in the operation of a freight rail line; (iii) specific experience/knowledge of the County of Salem and the subject matter to be addressed under the Contract; (iv) qualifications and experience which most closely match the needs of the County; (v) availability to accommodate meeting and interface requirements with the County of Salem for meetings, phone conferences, attendance at events and office consultations; (vi) office resources, including backup staff, which are deemed most adequate to service the needs of the County of Salem; and (vii) the applicant who is deemed otherwise most advantageous based on all information submitted or gathered in connection with the proposal.

The County of Salem reserves the right to: (i) not select any of the applicants; (ii) require applicants to submit to a personal interview and/or submit additional or clarifying information; (iii) to reject any or all proposals; (iv) to waive any informalities in the proposals; and (v) procure the articles or services from other sources if deemed most advantageous to the objectives of the County of Salem. The County of Salem’s determination of the applicant who is most advantageous to the goals and objectives of the County shall be final and conclusive.

Any questions regarding the request for proposals prior to the opening may be addressed to the Salem County Purchasing Department, 110 5th Street, Suite 400, Salem, New Jersey, 08079; telephone (856) 339-8601 or .

By order of the Board of County Commissioners of the County of Salem
Benjamin Laury, Director
Debby Turner-Fox, Qualified Purchasing Agent

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