Continuing in our mission to help Pennsylvania residents decipher the alphabet soup of agencies, we offer these PTC resources.
PTC Policies: Policy Letters
As part of transparency initiatives, the PA Turnpike Commission publishes policy documents on its web site. While interested readers can find the entire list here, we find several to be of particular note.
- Administration of PTC Policies. Contains information regarding development, review, approval, and maintenance of all policies.
- Construction Contract Change Order Approval. Contains information regarding review and approval levels for changes to projects as awarded in the Procurement policy (below).
- Procurement. Establishes policy regarding procurement, management, control, and disposal of services and supplies.
- Internal Audit Services. Establishes policy and defines responsibilities for internal audits of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission.
- Business and Supplier Diversity and Contract Compliance. Developed in accordance with the PTC’s desire to promote fair and equitable opportunities and competition in procurement. Seeks to ensure this via assistance to diverse businesses in competing for contracts.
- Job Order Contracting. Governs procurement of construction services (repairs, renovations, additions, upgrades, and new). Establishes an indefinite delivery / indefinite quantity method of delivery to accomplish high volumes of construction under a single bid contract.
- Land Use. Outlines procedure for utilization of property, such as real estate, cell towers, and oil/gas/mineral rights.
Last but not least, we bring you our favorite and yours.
The Right-to-Know Law Information Request policy determines how the PTC will – or will not – respond to requests for public records according to the RTKL.
PTC Resources: RFPs for Professional Services
As with many organizations, the PTC developed procedures for finding and retaining professional services outside its own expertise.
Requests for Purchase (RFPs) are to be advertised on the PTC website or PennDOT’s ECMS (Engineering and Construction Management System). Each RFP must include evaluation criteria in order of importance. In specific areas of expertise, some criteria may weigh more heavily or may be inadmissible. For instance, cost cannot be a factor for services in architecture or engineering.
Next, the TET (Technical Evaluation Team) reviews responses to the RFPs. The TET produces narrative assessments of all responses. Both strengths and weaknesses, according to the evaluation criteria, are determined. Additional selection factors from the RFP play a role as well.
Following the completion of the assessments, the TET presents the summaries to the Professional Services Procurement Committee (PSPC). The following five seats make up the permanent members of the PSPC:
- Chief Counsel (non-voting)
- Chief Engineer
- CFO (Chief Financial Officer)
- CTO (Chief Technology Officer)
- Director of Procurement and Logistics
- Ad-Hoc (conditional, depending on issuing department)
The PSPC reviews the summaries and findings of the TET, with full minutes taken of these meetings. Finally, the PSPC submits an alphabetical list of highly recommended firms (unranked) to the Commission.
Once commissioners receive this list, they announce the top firms in alphabetical order in a public meeting. A simple vote then determines the most highly recommended firm(s), authorizing the PTC to enter into contract negotiations.
Full details, including information on conflicts of interest, confidentiality, and code of conduct, are available on the PTC web site.
PTC Resources: Bond-Counsel Firms
From the PTC:
The PA Turnpike Commission (PTC) selects bond-counsel firms from a pool approved by the Commission based on a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) process. The most recent RFQ was posted in March 2017, and the Commission approved the current bond counsel pools in October 2017. Visit our investor-relations site to learn more; to find out which bond-counsel firms are involved in which transactions, visit our investor-relations provider’s web site, DAC Bond (you must register to access the information, but it’s a painless process).
The Mon Fayette Expressway
The first three Mon/Fayette projects connect I-68 in West Virginia to PA Route 51 in Jefferson Hills, Allegheny County. These three projects completed successfully.
For construction to begin on the final areas, the PTC must complete Right-of-Way acquisition. The scope of the project necessitated a breakup into smaller phases and sections. The Monongahela River served as a natural division point for this, breaking the project into a Northern and Southern phase. Construction of the first phase may begin as early as 2021. Costs for the Southern portion of the project are estimated at nine hundred million dollars ($900 M). Cost estimates and start date for the Northern phase remain unknown.
More information on this project can be found on the PA Turnpike Construction website.