Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

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March 12, 2014

Bids clarified for county data network

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Niagara County lawmakers now know Advance 2000 is the low bidder for a new countywide data system, but it’s uncertain if the Amherst firm’s bid will be accepted as legislators will seek advice from consultants and department heads before making a decision.

The county Legislature’s Administration committee met Monday with representatives from Advance 2000 and IPLogic, another Amherst-based company. Both companies clarified their bids, after months of confusion over what the offers actually were.

Advance 2000 originally was the low bidder, but lost the award when county officials and two consultants decided Advance left out some items in their bid and had equipment that didn’t meet the county request’s specifications. The county’s information technology department and consultants from ECC Technology and Cannon Design declared that IPLogic, another Amherst company, was the real low bidder.

The Legislature had a resolution pulled from its agenda last week that would have awarded the project to Advance 2000 but for a bid of $715,000. That total did not appear on any bid documents, but rather was the figure Legislator Randy R. Bradt, R-North Tonawanda, came up with.

When asked to confirm their bids Monday, Advance 2000 stuck with its initial bid of $670,028. IPLogic offered a choice, its original bid of $755,000 or a new offer of $700,578. IPLogic’s new offer was presented last week with a letter to county officials.

“We haven’t changed anything,” said Advance 2000’s Carl Carbone. “No one refers to the original bid documents.”

Legislator Anthony Nemi, I-Lockport, who chairs the Administration committee, said legislators will meet with consultants and department heads before the matter comes before the committee again.

Committee members discussed Monday whether or not the price was the most important item to consider in the judging of the bids. Advance 2000 offers Alcatel-Lucent equipment, while IPLogic offers Cisco Systems equipment, preferred by the county information department and its consultants.

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