City of Trenton, NJ
Mercer County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Trenton as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 2-2-2006 by Ord. No. 06-014; amended 11-7-2006 by Ord. No. 06-110[1]]
[1]
Editor’s Note: This ordinance was adopted by referendum vote of the voters of the City of Trenton at the general election held on 11-7-2006.

§ 57-1 Fair and open process.

Subject to the exception set forth below, all contracts to be awarded by the City which would otherwise be exempt from the public bidding laws and which have a value in excess of $17,500, as determined in advance and certified in writing by the Purchasing Agent or the department head seeking the procurement, shall only be awarded pursuant to a "fair and open" process.
A. 
"Fair and open" shall mean either:
(1) 
The contract shall be publicly advertised on the City Internet Web site in sufficient time to give notice in advance of the contract solicitation and awarded pursuant to a process that provides for public solicitation of proposals or qualifications and awarded based upon criteria established in writing by the City prior to the solicitation of proposals or qualifications and that the proposals be publicly opened at the designated time and place and that evaluation of the proposals be conducted consistent with this article;
(2) 
The contract is awarded pursuant to the competitive contracting provisions of the Local Public Contracts Law, N.J.S.A. 40A:11-4.1 et seq.; or
(3) 
The contract is awarded pursuant to public solicitation of bids.
B. 
Further consistent with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20.7, the City's determination of what constitutes a fair and open process shall be final.
C. 
Fair and open may necessarily be implemented differently for different categories of procurement depending on the subject matter of the procurement and the nature and nuances of the industry providing the services or the product, but in every instance, the principles of fair and open shall be maintained.

§ 57-2 Prequalification; procedure for awarding contract.

A. 
The process may include the prequalification of potential proposers and shall include the solicitation of proposals on forms to be developed by the Purchasing Agent and the department head to whose department the services will be provided or for whose department the product shall be procured, or their designees. The award of a contract shall be based on evaluation of the proposals, based on criteria which may include but are not necessarily limited to the following: accessibility; understanding of the assignment; price; methodology/plan for accomplishing the assignment; general experience; experience specific to the assignment; sufficiency of resources to perform the task; performance of the services within the United States of America.
B. 
The proposals shall be evaluated by a committee consisting of the Business Administrator or his or her designee; the Purchasing Agent or his or her designee, and the department head to whose department the services will be provided or for whose department the product shall be procured or his or her designee.
C. 
The proposals shall be publicly opened and a list created of all proposals submitted.
D. 
The award to the successful proposer shall be made by resolution adopted by the City Council.

§ 57-3 Alternative.

In the alternative to proceeding with a fair-and-open process described herein, the City may award a contract to a business entity for an amount in excess of $17,500, pursuant to procedures prescribed by the New Jersey Local Public Contracts Law and without competitive bidding or competitive contracting; however, such award may be made only if the recipient of the contract provides a written certification that it has not made, or will not make, a political contribution which would bar the award of the contract.
A. 
A disqualifying contribution in the context of this provision shall be one that is reportable by the recipient pursuant to N.J.S.A. 19:44A-1 et seq., and made within the time frame provided in that statute. If so awarded, the vendor receiving the contract shall not thereafter make such a reportable contribution during the term of that contract.
B. 
If a business entity makes a contribution that would cause it to be ineligible to receive such a public contract or, in the case of a contribution made during the term of the public contract, that would constitute a violation of N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20.4 et .seq., the business entity may request, in writing, within 60 days of the date on which the contribution was made, that the recipient thereof repay the contribution. If repayment is received within 60 days, the business entity will again be eligible to receive a contract or would no longer be in violation, as the case may be.

§ 57-4 Prohibition on awarding public contracts to certain contributors.

A. 
To the extent that it is not inconsistent with state or federal law, the City of Trenton and any of its departments, instrumentalities or purchasing agents shall not enter into any agreement or otherwise contract to procure professional services, as such term is used at N.J.S.A. 40A:11-5(1)(a)(i) and/or banking, insurance or other consulting service (hereinafter "professional services") from any professional business entity if such professional business entity has solicited or made any contribution, as such term is defined at N.J.A.C. 19:25.1.7, which definition includes loans, pledges and in-kind contributions (hereinafter "contribution"), to i) a candidate or joint candidates committee of any candidate for elective municipal office in Trenton or a holder of public office having ultimate responsibility for the award of a contract, or ii) any Trenton or Mercer County political party committee, or iii) any political action committee that regularly engages in the support of Trenton municipal or Mercer County elections and/or Trenton municipal or Mercer County political parties or Trenton municipal or Mercer County political party committees (hereinafter "PAC") in excess of the thresholds specified in Subsection D within one calendar year immediately preceding the date of the contract or agreement.
B. 
No professional business entity who submits a proposal for, enters into negotiations for, or agrees to any contract or agreement with the City of Trenton, or any of its departments or instrumentalities, for the rendition of professional services shall knowingly solicit or make any contribution, to: i) a candidate or joint candidates committee of any candidate for elective municipal office in Trenton or holder of public office having ultimate responsibility for the award of a contract, or ii) to any Trenton or Mercer County political party committee, or iii) to any political action committee ("PAC") that regularly engages in the support of Trenton municipal or Mercer County elections and/or Trenton municipal or Mercer County political parties or Trenton municipal or Mercer County political party committees, between the time of first communication between that professional business entity and the municipality regarding a specific agreement for professional services and the later of the termination of negotiations or rejection of any proposal, or the completion of the performance of that contract or agreement.
C. 
For purposes of this article, a "professional business entity" whose contributions are regulated by Subsections A and B hereof means: i) an individual, including the individual's spouse and any child/children living at home; ii) a firm, corporation, professional corporation, partnership, limited liability company, organization, association, and any other manner and kind of business entity; iii) any person who owns 10% or more of the equity or ownership or income interests in a person or entity as defined in i) and ii) above and their spouses and child/children living at home; iv) all partners or officers of such entity, in the aggregate, and their spouses and child/children living at home; and v) all persons who are an "affiliate" of a person as defined in i) and ii) above, as such term is used in 11 U.S.C. § 101(2).
D. 
The monetary thresholds of this article are: i) a maximum of $300 each for any purpose to any candidate for Mayor or governing body, or $300 to a political party committee of the City of Trenton; ii) $500 to a Mercer County political party committee or to any PAC. However, any group of persons meeting the definition provided in Subsection C above of "professional business entity" may not annually contribute for any purpose in excess of $2,500 to all City of Trenton candidates and officeholders with ultimate responsibility for the award of the contract and all City of Trenton or Mercer County political party committees and PACs combined, without violating Subsection A of this section.
E. 
For purposes of this section, the office that is considered to have ultimate responsibility for the award of the contract shall be:
(1) 
The City of Trenton Mayor or governing body, if the contract requires approval of appropriation from the Mayor or governing body.
(2) 
The Mayor of the City of Trenton, if the contract requires approval of the Mayor or if a public officer who is responsible for the award of a contract is appointed by the Mayor.

§ 57-5 Contributions made prior to effective date.

No contribution or solicitation of contributions made prior to the effective date of §§ 57-4 through 57-9 shall be deemed to give rise to a violation of §§ 57-4 through 57-9 of this article.

§ 57-6 Contribution statement by professional business entity.

A. 
Prior to awarding any contract or agreement to procure professional services from any professional business entity, the City of Trenton or its purchasing agents and departments, as the case may be, shall receive a sworn statement from the intended recipient of said contract that he/she/it has not made a contribution in violation of § 57-4 of this article.
B. 
The recipient of said contract shall have a continuing duty to report any violations of this article that may occur during the negotiation, proposal process or duration of a contract's performance. The certification required under this subsection shall be made prior to entry into the contract or agreement with the City of Trenton, or prior to the provision of services or goods, as the case may be, and shall be in addition to any other certifications that may be required by any other provision of law.

§ 57-7 Return of excess contributions.

A recipient of a contract for professional services may cure a violation of § 57-4 of this article, if, within 30 days after the general election which follows the date of the contribution, the contract recipient notifies the municipality in writing and seeks and receives reimbursement of the contribution from the recipient of such excess contribution.

§ 57-8 Exemptions.

The contribution limitations prior to entering into a contract in § 57-4A do not apply to contracts which i) are awarded to the lowest responsible bidder after public advertising for bids and bidding therefor within the meaning of N.J.S.A. 40A:11-4, or ii) are awarded in the case of an emergency under N.J.S.A. 40A:11-6. There is no exemption for contracts awarded pursuant to a "fair and open process" under N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20 et seq.

§ 57-9 Penalty.

A. 
It shall be a material breach of the terms of a City of Trenton agreement or contract for professional services when a recipient of such agreement or contract has: i) made or solicited a contribution in violation of this article; ii) knowingly concealed or misrepresented a contribution given or received; iii) made or solicited contributions through intermediaries for the purpose of concealing or misrepresenting the source of the contribution; iv) made or solicited any contribution on the condition or with the agreement that it will be recontributed to a candidate or joint candidates committee of any candidate for elective municipal office in Trenton or any Trenton or Mercer County political part committee, or any PAC; v) engaged or employed a lobbyist or consultant with the intent of understanding that such lobbyist or consultant would make or solicit any contribution, which if made or solicited by the professional business entity itself would subject that entity to the restrictions of this article; vi) funded contributions made by third parties, including consultants, attorneys, family members, and employees; vii) engaged in any exchange or contributions to circumvent the intent of this article; or viii) directly or indirectly, through or by any other person or means, done any act which if done directly would subject that entity to the restrictions of this article.
B. 
Furthermore, any professional business entity that violates Subsection A shall be disqualified from eligibility for future City of Trenton contracts for a period of four calendar years from the date of the violation.
[Adopted 9-4-2014 by Ord. No. 14-43]

§ 57-10 Declaration of public policy.

It is hereby declared to be the public policy of the City of Trenton that the hiring of Trenton residents to the greatest extent possible by developers, construction contractors and any other entities or individuals which have been contracted to conduct business with the City of Trenton shall be applied to any and all federally or state-assisted, City-sponsored or privately funded developments within the City limits, with bona fide Trenton residents being afforded a minimum of 25% of the total employee worker hours in each construction trade and/or company position. The term "employees" shall apply to persons filling apprenticeship and on-the-job-training positions, and said developers, contractors and employers may rely upon the traditional referral methods in the hiring of employees, journeymen, apprentices, trainees and helpers. By way of example: for a construction contract, the categories shall include, but not be limited to, carpenters, drywall (sheetrock) installers, electricians, framers, glazers, hazardous materials removers, heavy-equipment operators, laborers, landscapers, masons, painters, pipe fitters, plumbers, roofers and window installers.
A. 
The City of Trenton requires, as part of its bid specifications and contract stipulations, that all/any prospective contractors bidding for a municipal contract take affirmative steps to the greatest extent feasible to employ qualified Trenton residents for 25% of the duration of the contract. In order to comply with this section, contractors or other persons doing business with the City shall demonstrate good-faith efforts to ensure that 25% of the total employee worker hours shall be reserved for Trenton residents.
B. 
Contractors awarded City contracts in compliance with Subsection A above are required to submit semiannual progress reports to the Trenton Employment Commission containing an accurate record of the number of Trenton residents hired as well as the number of Trenton residents currently employed on the project; the number of training positions, if any, and the amount of positions that will be filled by Trenton residents; and the necessary level of job skills required of Trenton residents to plan and implement the work to be done on the job. In the semiannual reports the contractors should document all "good faith" efforts in their actions to hire Trenton residents. For example, such documentation should consist of the following:
(1) 
Copies of all advertisement for training and employment.
(2) 
A list of Trenton residents who applied or otherwise expressed interest in training positions or employment.
(3) 
Letters to community organizations informing them of employment opportunities.
C. 
All advertisements made by or on behalf of the City or any of its departments for bids, requests for proposals or other specifications in pursuance of any law requiring the advertisements for bids shall include specific reference to Subsections A and B of this section.

§ 57-11 Contractors' best efforts.

A. 
In order to validate a good-faith effort with qualified Trenton residents, contractors shall comply with the stipulations of this article and shall require themselves and each subcontractor to designate an individual to serve as a compliance officer for the purpose of pursuing the Trenton Resident Employment Policy.
B. 
Prior to the start of construction, the contractor, and each subcontractor then selected, shall meet with appropriate representatives of the construction trade unions, when necessary, representatives from the Trenton Department of Housing and Economic Development, and the awarding or contracting authority for the purpose of reviewing the standards and the estimated employment requirements for construction activity over the construction period of the project.
C. 
Whenever any person involved in the construction of a project makes a request to a union hiring hall, business agent or contractors' association of qualified workers, the requestor shall ask that those qualified applicants referred for construction positions be referred in the proportions specified in the Trenton Resident Employment Policy standards and shall further contain a recitation of such standards. However, if the requesting party's workforce composition at any time falls short of any one or more of the proportions specified in the standards, the requesting party shall adjust his or her request so as to seek to more fully achieve the proportions as specified in which a request for qualified employees has been made fails to fully comply with the request, the requesting party's compliance officer shall seek written confirmation that there are insufficient employees in the categories specified in the request and that such insufficiency is documented on the unemployment list maintained by the hall, agent or association. Copies of any confirmation so obtained shall be forwarded to the Commission. Copies of any requests for qualified employees made at the time that the requesting party's workforce composition falls short of any one or more such standards shall be forwarded contemporaneously to the Commission.
D. 
All persons applying directly to the contractor or any subcontractor for employment in construction of a project who are not employed by the party to whom application is made shall be referred by said party to the Commission, and a written record of such a referral shall be made by said party, a copy of which shall be sent to the Commission.
E. 
Contractors shall maintain a file of the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of each Trenton resident who has sought employment with respect to a project or who was referred to the contractor by the Trenton Employment Commission but was not hired. The contractor shall maintain a record of the reason any such person was not hired. If the construction of a project is subject to any union collective bargaining agreements, it shall be required that the employee complies with any lawful union security clauses contained in such agreement.
F. 
The contractor shall in a timely manner complete and submit to the Commission a projection of the workforce needs over the course of construction of the project. Such a submission shall reflect the needs by trade for each month of the construction phase.
G. 
The contractor shall obtain from each worker employed in the construction of the project, a sworn statement containing the worker's name and place of residence.
H. 
One week following the commencement of construction of the project, and each week thereafter until such work is completed, the contractor shall complete and submit to the Trenton Employment Commission for the week just ended a report which reflects, for each employee, the employee's name, place of residence, race, gender, trade and total number of worker hours he or she worked, and the total worker hours of its total workforce.
I. 
The contractor and each subcontractor shall maintain records reasonably necessary to ascertain compliance with the steps detailed in Subsections A through H hereof for at least one year after the beginning of the construction of the project. In its review of records of a construction project submitted to demonstrate compliance with these steps, the Commission shall take into consideration any affirmative action outreach programs and affirmative action job training programs of the particular trades participating in the project.

§ 57-12 Developers' best efforts.

A. 
In order to validate a good-faith effort to hire qualified Trenton residents, any developer engaged in a project with the City that is funded, in whole or in part, by the City and in excess of $2,500,000 shall comply with the stipulations of this article and shall incorporate in every general construction contract or construction management agreement an enumeration of the standards and shall impose a responsibility upon such general contractor or construction management to take all steps enumerated in § 57-11A through I and incorporate such standards in all subcontracts and impose upon all subcontracts the obligation to take such steps.
B. 
The developer shall meet with the contractor no less frequently than weekly throughout the period of construction of the project to review the contractor's compliance with such standards and steps. The developer shall maintain minutes of such meetings and shall forward a copy of such minutes to the Trenton Employment Commission within 10 days of such meeting.

§ 57-13 Procedures and guidelines.

The following procedures and guidelines must be followed by all subcontractors performing work on the project. This project is subject to the Trenton Resident Employment Policy and will be monitored by the Commission to ensure that twenty-five-percent employment of Trenton residents is achieved and maintained.
A. 
Submit a letter to the union explaining that this project is subject to the Trenton Resident Employment Policy, which requires that twenty-five-percent employment of Trenton residents should be achieved on a weekly basis until completion of your contract with this company.
B. 
As your company gets ready to hire workers from the local union, keep in mind that all requests made by your job representative in your office must be done in writing. All requests must include the name of the representative making such request, the names of persons she/he contacted at the union hall, date of contract and action taken by union representative.
C. 
A meeting is to take place with union business agents before your company starts any type of work on this project.
D. 
Your office must keep records for all walk-in applicants. Records should include the name, address, and telephone number of the applicant, the position for which the applicant applied, whether the applicant is a resident, and action taken by your office.
E. 
A meeting shall be called by the general contractor and the Commission to discuss what other steps will be taken to help your office comply with these requirements.
F. 
Developers shall make any and all efforts to contract with local contractors and suppliers whenever possible.