Proposal Guidelines


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Department of Buildings and General Services

Agency of Administration

Purchasing & Contract Administration 10 Baldwin St.

Montpelier VT 05633

[phone] 802-828-2210

[Fax] 802-828-2222

www.bgs.state.vt.us

SEALED BID REQUEST FOR INFORMATION

Vermont Automated Notification Service System DATE:

02/04/2014

QUESTIONS DUE BY:

02/14/2014 4:30 PM

RFI RESPONSE DUE DATE:

03/03/2014 3:00 PM

LOCATION FOR RFI RETURN: 10 Baldwin St, Montpelier, VT 05633 PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT ALL NOTIFICATIONS, RELEASES AND AMENDMENTS ASSOCIATED WITH THIS RFI WILL BE POSTED AT http://bgs.vermont.gov/purchasing/. THE STATE WILL MAKE NO ATTEMPT TO CONTACT VENDORS WITH UPDATED INFORMATION. IT WILL BE THE RESPONSIBILITY OF EACH VENDOR TO PERIODICALLY CHECK THIS SITE FOR THE LATEST DETAILS.

PURCHASING AGENT: John McIntyre TELEPHONE: (802) 828-2210 E-MAIL: [email protected] FAX: (802) 828-2222

Contents 1 PURPOSE .............................................................................................................................................................................. 3 1.1 LIABILITY ........................................................................................................................................................................ 3 1.2 CONFIDENTIALITY.......................................................................................................................................................... 3 2 BACKGROUND INFORMATION ............................................................................................................................................. 4 3 RFI DESCRIPTION .................................................................................................................................................................. 4 4 CURRENT STATE ................................................................................................................................................................... 4 5 ANTICIPATED REQUIREMENTS ............................................................................................................................................. 5 6 REQUESTED INFORMATION ................................................................................................................................................. 6 6.1 COVER PAGE.................................................................................................................................................................. 6 6.2 VENDOR QUESTIONNAIRE ............................................................................................................................................ 6 6.3 CONTACT INFORMATION .............................................................................................................................................. 6 6.4 RFI RESPONSE SUBMISSION .......................................................................................................................................... 6 6.5 EXPLANATION OF EVENTS ............................................................................................................................................ 7 7 VENDOR QUESTIONNAIRE ................................................................................................................................................... 8 8 APPENDIX A: COST ESTIMATE WORKSHEET ......................................................................................................................... 8 8.1: COST ESTIMATE TABLE ................................................................................................................................................ 8 8.2 ADDITIONAL MATERIALS ............................................................................................................................................... 8

1 PURPOSE This Request for Information (RFI) is issued for the Vermont Department of Corrections to gather input and obtain information and cost estimates in proceeding with proposals for pretrial services and supervision to offenders released on conditions from Vermont Superior Court Criminal Division or as part of a prosecutor-supervised alternative criminal justice program. Pre-trial services are currently under consideration at the General Assembly in the form of bill S.295. The Department recommends review of the most current version of S.295 when responding to this RFI. The Vermont Department of Corrections intends to evaluate the submissions by respondents to explore how they would meet the Department’s needs and understand the cost associated with proposed solutions. The Vermont Department of Corrections shall not be held liable for any costs incurred by the vendors in the preparation of their submission, or for any work performed prior to contract issuance.

1.1 LIABILITY THIS IS A REQUEST FOR INFORMATION (RFI) ONLY. This RFI is issued solely for information and planning purposes – it does not constitute a Request for Proposal (RFP) or a promise to issue an RFP in the future. This request for information does not commit the State to contract for any materials or service whatsoever. Further, the State is not at this time seeking proposals and will not accept unsolicited proposals. Respondents are advised that the State will not pay for any information or administrative costs incurred in response to this RFI; all costs associated with responding to this RFI will be solely at the interested party’s expense. Not responding to this RFI does not preclude participation in any future RFP, if any is issued. If an RFP is released, it will be posted on the BGS bid opportunities web site: http://www.bgs.state.vt.us/pca/bids/bids.php. It is the responsibility of the potential offerors to monitor this site for additional information.

1.2 CONFIDENTIALITY CONFIDENTIALITY: All responses to the RFI will become part of the state’s file and are a matter of public record. If a response includes material that the responsive party considers proprietary and/ or confidential under 1 VSA, Chapter 5, then the responsive party must clearly and specifically designate which materials the responsive party believes to be proprietary and / or confidential. Said designation must include an explanation why such material should be considered confidential and / or proprietary. The responsive party must identify each portion, section, paragraph, page, or document that it believes is proprietary and / or confidential with sufficient grounds to justify each identified section from release, including the prospective harm to the competitive position of the responsive party if the identified material were to be released. Under no circumstances can the entire response or any included price information be marked confidential. Responses that fail to comply with these provisions will be treated as public record according to 1 VSA, Chapter 5.

The solicitation of this RFI does not commit the Vermont Department of Corrections or the State of Vermont to award a contract. This RFI is for information gathering purposes only and no vendor will be selected, prequalified, or exempted based upon their RFI participation.

2 BACKGROUND INFORMATION Currently, the Vermont Department of Corrections supervises convicted offenders. Defendants in pending cases are either released on bail and/or conditions of release or detained in a correctional facility. Defendants released on bail and/or conditions have little to no contact with the Department of Corrections. The Department monitors a small number of cases under Home Detention status. Home Detention is a passive monitoring system with no active supervision or risk reduction related strategies applied. Several jurisdictions and the federal government assess, recommend conditions of release for, and supervise pretrial defendants. Within Vermont there are alternative programs (including Rapid Intervention, Rapid Referral, Sparrow) that have similar features to these types of pretrial services. The Department is requesting information that will, wherever possible, expand and enhance existing programs and also provide services to pretrial defendants who currently do not benefit from such programs.

3 RFI DESCRIPTION The Department is seeking information to assess the feasibility of utilizing pretrial services for defendants in lieu of either incarceration or unsupervised release. The information provided should include but is not limited to: staffing; staff authority; methods for assessing a defendant’s risk and treatment needs as close to the defendant’s arrest as possible, including use of validated pretrial risk and needs instruments; methods for making referrals to and communicating with community-based treatment programs and providers; and methods of determining and reporting compliance or noncompliance with conditions. The Department is seeking feedback on the information in this RFI and will consider any information, including partial responses, received in response to this RFI. If the Department moves forward in the development of an RFP, the RFP process will be open to all respondents regardless of their decision to participate in this RFI. The Department envisions that the solution will support the following high-level goals: Provide objective, evidence-based pretrial assessments of eligible arrestees to prosecutors and/or judges to help inform decisions related to alternative intervention and on release and conditions of release; Maximize treatment to eligible defendants while they await trial or complete the requirements of an alternative criminal justice program; Increase public safety through monitoring defendants’ compliance with conditions of release and/or conditions of participation in alternative criminal justice programs; Potentially reduce the number of detentioners held in correctional facilities; Integrate and incorporate existing community resources with the goal of implementing pretrial services to the maximum extent possible.

4 CURRENT STATE Currently, if a Vermont defendant violates conditions of release while they await trial, it may not be evident. When the behavior attracts the attention of law enforcement, the officer initiates a new charge of violation of conditions of release and the defendant returns to court where conditions may be modified, bail may be imposed or the defendant may be remanded to a correctional facility. In addition, many Vermont defendants currently only enroll in community based treatment following their conviction instead of while they await trial. In select counties there are programs such as the Rapid Intervention and Rapid Referral Program in Chittenden County and the Sparrow Program in Windsor County where defendants are case-managed and their engagement in risk-reducing services is supported and monitored. With the goal of expanding these approaches on a statewide level, the Department would like to hear from respondents as to how they can provide or assist in providing such services.

5 ANTICIPATED REQUIREMENTS The purpose of this RFI is to determine if there are solutions capable of meeting the Department’s anticipated requirements and to determine alternatives for meeting those requirements that are consistent with the overall vision for the Vermont Department of Corrections and the state. The Department is looking for information regarding a pretrial services program with the following attributes; please note such attributes may be subject to the final version of S.295, should the bill pass into law: With the arrestee’s consent, an assessor would conduct an interview and administer a pretrial risk and needs assessment as close to a person’s arrest as possible and before the person’s arraignment. The assessor would gather and verify information provided by the arrestee, including information such as residency, ties to the community, criminal background including any history of failures to appear, substance abuse, mental health issues, and employment. The assessor would seek information related to the defendant’s risk of flight as well as their suitability for available treatment services. The information gathered would be provided to the court, the prosecutor and when applicable the defense counsel. The information provided would inform a prosecutor’s decision as to whether to offer participation in an alternative criminal justice program; the information provided to the court would help inform the judge’s decision at arraignment as to whether to release the defendant on conditions while they await trial. In the event the arrestee enters into an alternative criminal justice program supervised by a prosecutor, a compliance officer would report on the arrestee’s compliance or noncompliance with any conditions of participation in the program to the prosecutor and potentially the court. In the event the arrestee became a defendant in the traditional criminal justice process but was released on conditions while they awaited trial, a compliance officer would report on the defendant’s compliance or noncompliance with the pretrial conditions to the court, prosecutor, and defense counsel. The Department seeks information including but not limited to: (1) Recommended validated pretrial assessment tools for use with pretrial defendants; (2) Staffing requirements to perform the assessments and compliance monitoring; (3) Methods of performing assessments and compliance monitoring; (4) Authority required by staff (ie, authority to issue a citation, obtain criminal background information, perform substance abuse testing); (5) Connection and communication of staff with community-based treatment providers; (6) Reporting structure and accountability of staff; (7) Necessary training of staff. The Department expects that the risk assessment and treatment needs screening would occur as close to arrest as possible, and prior to the arrestee’s arraignment. The Department expects that compliance monitoring will vary based on the person’s risk and needs profile, but would include regular contact to ensure appearance at hearings and treatment appointments, as well as potentially substance abuse testing and electronic monitoring if feasible and ordered by the court. Respondents may tailor responses to address the above areas – and any other areas that may be relevant – on either a statewide or regional basis.

6 REQUESTED INFORMATION The Department encourages, but does not require, inclusion of the elements listed below in each response to the RFI. The vendor, when presenting the response, may use the following outline: Cover Page Vendor Information Cost Estimates Business and Technical Requirements

6.1 COVER PAGE The first page of the vendor’s RFI Response must be a cover page displaying at least the following: Response of RFI Title Vendor’s Name Contact Person Telephone Number Address Fax Number Email Address All subsequent pages of the RFI Response must be numbered.

6.2 VENDOR QUESTIONNAIRE Please provide your answers to the stated questions related to the project. Additional information may supplement your answers and must be attached to the RFI response.

6.3 CONTACT INFORMATION All communications concerning the process for this Request for Information (RFI) are to be addressed in writing to the attention of: John McIntyre Purchasing Agent, State of Vermont, Purchasing and Contract Administration Division, 10 Baldwin St, Montpelier VT 05633. John McIntyre, Purchasing Agent is the sole contact for this RFI Response. Attempts by RFI Responders to contact any other party could result in the rejection of their RFI Response. Communication concerning the Department’s programmatic expectations may be addressed to: Cheryl Elovirta Field Services Operations Manager 103 South Main Street Waterbury VT 05671

6.4 RFI RESPONSE SUBMISSION CLOSING DATE: The closing date for the receipt of RFI Responses is 3:00 PM March 03, 2014. Responses must be delivered To: John McIntyre, State of Vermont, Purchasing and Contracting Department, 10 Baldwin St, Montpelier, VT 05633 prior to that time. RFI Responses or unsolicited amendments submitted after that time will not be accepted and will be returned to the vendor. The responses will be received by purchasing at 10 Baldwin St, Montpelier, VT 05633 and will be passed on to Vermont Department of Corrections for review. RFI responses must include one (1) electronic copy on Compact Disc (CD) and Three (3) Paper (hard copy) responses must also be submitted. Paper copies must be bound with a staple, binder or other appropriate means such that pages are not submitted loosely. Three (3) copies of the RFI must be delivered to the Purchase

Agent. The electronic response made to the narrative portion of this RFI must be in Microsoft Word version 2007 compatible format. At least one copy of the Cost Table and Business and Technical Requirements must be made in Microsoft Excel Version 2007 or higher.

6.5 EXPLANATION OF EVENTS 1. Issuance of RFI This RFI is being issued by the State Purchasing Division (SPD) of the General Services Department. Additional copies of the RFI can be obtained from the State Purchasing Division web site http://bgs.vermont.gov/purchasing or directly from the State Purchasing Agent. 2. Deadline for Written Questions Potential respondents may submit questions regarding this RFI. Questions must be submitted in writing, by e-mail, to the Purchasing Agent John McIntyre at [email protected] and must be received by 4:30 PM Eastern Time on February 14, 2014. 3. Response to Written Questions Any vendor requiring clarification of any section of this request for information or wishing to comment or take exception to any requirements or other portion of the RFI is encouraged to submit specific questions in writing no later than February 14, 2014, at 4:30PM. Questions may be e-mailed to [email protected] Any objection to the RFI or to any provision of the RFI, that is not raised in writing on or before the last day of the question period is waived. At the close of the question period a copy of all questions or comments and the State's responses will be posted on the State’s web site http://bgs.vermont.gov/purchasing/bids. Every effort will be made to have these available as soon after the question period ends, contingent on the number and complexity of the questions. 4. Submission of Responses Three (3) paper copies of the RFI response and one (1) electronic copy on CD should be delivered to the Purchasing Agent no later than 3:00 PM Eastern Time on March 03, 2014. Responses received after the due date and time may not be considered. Responses should be labeled, "Response to RFI# Vermont Automated Notification Service System”. 5. Review and Evaluation of Responses The review and evaluation of responses to the RFI will be performed by Vermont Department of Corrections and their designees. The evaluation process will take place the week following the response due date. During this time, the RFI Manager or other Vermont Department of Corrections representatives may, at their option, initiate discussion with respondents for the purpose of clarifying aspects of their responses. 6. Vendor Demonstration of Their Proposal Vendors chosen from the review process may be called on to demonstrate or provide more information about their proposals. The Vermont Department of Corrections shall not be liable for any costs incurred by the vendor in preparation of its demonstration. All costs occurred are the vendor’s sole responsibility. All such demonstrations are for planning purposes only and do not constitute a legal bid. 7. Vendor Proposal Test Trial

Certain Vendor proposals may be selected after review process to be trialed by Vermont Department of Corrections if this is an option allowable by the vendor. The selection of vendor proposals for a test trial does not commit the Vermont Department of Corrections or the State of Vermont to award a contract.

7 VENDOR QUESTIONNAIRE We are asking for a total cost estimate (low and high estimates) comprised of software, hardware, and necessary implementation services. We understand that the cost figures provided are for planning purposes only and will not be binding in any way.

8 APPENDIX A: COST ESTIMATE WORKSHEET 8.1: COST ESTIMATE TABLE Item

General Requirements Description

1

Hardware to monitor defendants (electronic monitoring and/or alcohol monitoring) Drug testing Office space and supplies Staffing Other(S)

2 3 4 5

Cost

8.2 ADDITIONAL MATERIALS Please provide any other materials, suggestions, cost, and discussion you deem appropriate.