Mackinac Bridge Authority RFP: Consultant to Assist in Procurement of Tolling System

Mackinac Bridge Authority (MBA)




The Mackinac Bridge is a five mile long suspension bridge which spans the Straits of Mackinac and connects Michigan’s two peninsulas.  Tolls are collected from both north and south bound vehicles at its only plaza located at the north end of the Mackinac Bridge.  The MBA’s Administrative Office is in this same plaza located at N415 I-75, St. Ignace, Michigan 49781.


The MBA is currently under contract with a tolling system vendor.  This contract is initially set to expire on September 29, 2019.  There are potentially three (3) phases to the contract:

Phase 1: Consulting services for performing a toll system needs assessment and procurement of a tolling system vendor;

Phase 2:  Serving as an extension of staff as Owner’s Representative Consultant (ORC) during the tolling collection system installation and implementation;

Phase 3:  Follow up support, as determined and needed by the MBA after the system installation.

Phase 1 will be contracted first and based on performance and need, Phase 2 and 3 may be added by contract amendment by the MBA.

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION OF QUESTIONS ON RFP:   July 28th, 2017 all questions regarding this RFP must be emailed to  All questions and responses to them will be posted on the MBA’s website at no later than July 31th, 2017.  MBA reserves the right to make amendments to this RFP after initial publication.  It is each responder’s responsibility to check the MBA website for any amendments made to this RFP.

DEADLINE FOR SUBMITTING PROPOSALS:  August 14th, 2017 Mail three (3) copies of vendor proposal along with proof of insurance and references to the MBA Project Manager.  Proposals will not be accepted after 4:00 pm on August 14, 2017.


ANTICIPATED SERVICE START DATE:   Two (2) week after Michigan Administrative Board approval of contract.

ANTICIPATED SERVICE COMPLETION DATE:   March 30th, 2018, for acceptance of the contract between the tolling system’s vendor(s) and the MBA.


Michael C. Litzner, CFO
Mackinac Bridge Authority
N415 I-75, St. Ignace MI 49781
Office (906) 643-1326    Cell (231) 437-0032


It is anticipated that the awarded contractor will provide resources for the procurement of awarded tolling system vendor(s).  The MBA plans to have toll system vendor(s) complete the development of their required systems to ensure an effective date of tolling system(s) acceptance by the MBA no later than September 30th, 2019.  If other consultant services are desired by the MBA, there may be a separate solicitation for these services, or they may be amended in the consulting service contract.  Other services may include providing an ORC throughout the tolling system implementation period to help ensure contract compliance and acceptance by the MBA.  Additionally, the MBA may require the services of an ORC, on an as needed basis, throughout the service life of the newly installed tolling system, including system and contractual issues, change orders, tolling industry enhancements, etc.


The consulting services required are to support the goals, activities and services of MBA’s Tolling Operations, including vehicle classification and toll collection, toll plaza and Customer Service Center operations, hosting the traffic, revenue, and customer prepaid toll account data, systems communications, toll revenue counting, depository bank transportation and deposit to MBA’s account, toll revenue audit, system reporting, and integration with the MBA’s general ledger accounting system.  Tasks throughout the life of the contract may include on-site work at the Mackinac Bridge, in-person presentations at various meetings of the MBA, site visits of other tolling facilities, and timely information coordination with the MBA’s contract manager.  These services are to be performed at the explicit direction of the MBA.  Generally, the consulting services required are primarily for the toll system needs assessment and procurement phase, and if requested by the MBA, serving as the MBA’s ORC throughout the system design, construction and implementation, through project acceptance by the MBA.  Additionally, the ORC may, at the MBA’s request, provide services on an as-needed basis throughout the system(s) service life. 


In addition to other tasks requested by the MBA’s project manager, the consultant must:

  • Submit a plan of action (scope and schedule) to the MBA project manager for the procurement phase of the tolling system within two (2) weeks of award of contract;
  • Have an initial on-site review of MBA’s existing operations and services and its current tolling system, including roadside, hosting, and back-office systems. This review must occur within three (3) weeks of contract award and include in-person interviews with key MBA members and staff;
  • Review the MBA’s current financial operations and toll collection business rules, and the contractual requirements relating to MBA’s existing contract for tolling services;
  • Propose changes, if any, to the MBA’s current financial operational and toll collection business rules to incorporate industry standard best practices, operational efficiencies, improvements in financial accountability, and accurate reporting of traffic, revenue and operating personnel efficiency within eight (8) weeks of contract award;
  • Prepare a comprehensive assessment(s) of vendor tolling systems available, including toll revenue risk analysis of various system options;
  • Present the proposed design recommendations to the MBA board members and staff at a scheduled MBA meeting. There will be two MBA meetings, the first with the Tolling System Committee and the second with the full MBA board on the following day.  Anticipated meetings will be early November, 2017 or late February, 2018 (depending on contract award start date). This presentation will include discussion on recommendations and modifications as requested by the MBA.  This operational design may include separate vendor contracts for toll lane operations, Customer Service Center operations, system data hosting, and MBA back-office procedures;
  • Prepare RFP(s), as approved by the MBA, for the development, installation, and maintenance of new or modified tolling systems, including the equipment, software, communications, etc. required for the roadside, back office, hosting, and others as identified. The consultant is expected to be present to give progress reports regarding the development of RFP(s) at the MBA office or at specific MBA meetings as identified.  These in-person reports would probably be in December 2017, to show the consultant’s progress on the project, another in January 2018, to recommend vendor(s) to be awarded, and then to present the written vendor contract(s) for MBA approval in February 2018;
  • Advertise the RFP(s) approved by the MBA to a wide range of tolling system vendors and the tolling industry;
  • Review of proposals received from tolling vendors through the RFP(s);
  • Recommend acceptance of proposals to the MBA in person at a MBA meeting to be determined;
  • Assist the MBA with contract negotiations;
  • Prepare contracts between the selected vendor(s) and the MBA for the design, development, implementation and maintenance of a new tolling system at the Mackinac Bridge.


Additional consulting tasks as an ORC, if approved by the MBA, may include:

  • Ensuring contract compliance with selected tolling system vendors
    • Weekly progress reports to the MBA project manager;
    • On site reviews as requested by the MBA project manager. These reviews may be required more frequently during the system implementation and testing periods;
  • Ensuring timely completion of the tolling system and acceptance by the MBA;
  • Providing technical support for ongoing operations and maintenance of the tolling systems, including future system reinvestment needs;
  • Assisting the MBA throughout the tolling system(s) life with issues arising and changes approved by the MBA for tolling industry improvements for the Mackinac Bridge;
  • Assisting the MBA with future interoperability with other toll agencies.


The responder to this RFP shall provide the name of the individual who will be the contract project manager for the term of this contract.  This contract project manager will be responsible for:

  • Proper operation and administration of the contract by the toll system vendor;
  • Responding in a timely manner and in writing, unless instructed otherwise, to all requests from the MBA contract manager; and
  • Serving as a liaison between the toll system vendor and the MBA.

The MBA may require the consultant to relieve the contract project manager if:

  • The contract project manager does not support the contract requirements;
  • The service provider does not deliver work which conforms to the requirements demonstrated in this contact; or
  • Issues arise with the contract project manager that hinder effective functioning of the contract.

The MBA contract manager shall have the final authority, with the approval of the MBA, in all operational matters pursuant to this contract.  The MBA contract manager, prior to performance, must approve alterations, substitutions, or modifications to this contract.  These modifications, etc. may include new services not originally awarded but that MBA views as value added and may therefore be added to the contract.

The MBA reserves the right to terminate an awarded contract and award another contractor associated with this RFP in the event that the awarded contractor is unable or unwilling to maintain adequate service delivery schedules, non-delivery, or if the services being delivered do not meet required specifications.  When an awarded contractor does not comply with the contract, the awarded contractor shall be responsible for any additional costs incurred and expenses suffered by the MBA as a result of the awarded contractor’s non-compliance.


The responder to this RFP shall provide the name of the individual who will be the ORC should the MBA request such services during the tolling system project installation and implementation phases.  The ORC will be responsible for:

  • Proper review of the tolling systems progress to ensure timely installation and implementation;
  • Responding in a timely manner and in writing, unless instructed otherwise, to all requests from the MBA project manager;
  • Responding in a timely manner and in writing, unless instructed otherwise, to all issues/problems identified during the tolling system project development, installation, testing, and contract development through acceptance by the MBA;
  • Provide technical support, on an as needed basis, for maintenance issues or contractual issues, etc. with system(s) compliance;
  • Assist with contractual change order requests and management;
  • Other tasks as requested by the MBA.

The MBA may require the contractor to relieve the ORC if:

  • The ORC does not deliver services on a timely basis which conform to the requirements demonstrated in the contract;
  • Issues arising with the ORC that hinder effective functioning of the tolling system project.


Subcontracting is allowed with prior approval from MBA. 


MBA reserves the right to terminate contracts upon a thirty (30) day written notice or terminate contracts immediately if the contractor does not conform to the terms and conditions of the contract or breaches any material element of the contract.

CONSULTANT PAYMENT (actual cost plus fixed fee):

Unless otherwise determined by MBA, compensation shall be on an actual cost plus fixed fee basis.  This basis of payment typically includes an estimate of labor hours by classification or employee, hourly labor rates, applied overhead, other direct costs including travel and subsistence, sub-consultant costs, and an applied fixed fee.  The fixed fee for profit allowed for this project is 11.0% of the cost of direct labor and overhead.  Direct expenses will not be paid in excess of that allowed by MBA for its own employees in accordance with the Sate of Michigan’s Standardized Travel Regulations.  Supporting documentation must be submitted with the billing for all eligible expenses.  The only hours that will be considered allowable charges for this contract are those that are directly attributable to the tasks and activities specified in the contract.

All billings for services performed by the contractor must be directed to the MBA project manager for review and approval.  Invoices must be submitted within 60 days of completion of services for the current billing.  The final billing must be received within 60 days of the completion of services.  The only hours that will be considered allowable charges for this contract are those that are directly attributable to the tasks and activities specified in the contract.  Any billing disputes will be discussed with the contract manager prior to payment approval.  Payment for approved billings will be mailed within two weeks of approval for payment.  The contractor may receive payment upon approval via MBA credit card.


During the term of this contract and for a period of six (6) years thereafter, MBA, its auditors, or other authorized representatives shall be afforded access at reasonable times to service provider’s accounting records, including sales information on any service provided, reports or files, in order to audit all records relating to goods sold or services performed pursuant to this contract.  If such an audit indicates that the service provider has overcharged MBA, then the service provider shall remit the overcharge and be responsible for payment of any additional costs associated with the audit.  Respondents must include evidence of successful performance relative to the specified Consulting Services outlined in this RFP.


The following is a list of the information that each prosper must provide.  The MBA reserves the right to, in its discretion, reject as non-responsive any proposal that does not include all of the required information in the format specified.  Each proposal shall include:

  1. Cover letter
  2. Executive summary
  3. Firm qualifications
  4. Approach to providing the required services
  5. Proposed timeline of services
  6. References
  7. Proof of insurance

The MBA requests that the proposal be submitted in a binder with the materials separated by number tabs to match the order of the specific information required.

  1. Cover letter: A cover letter must be signed by the individual or individuals authorized to bind the proposer contractually.  The letter must indicate for each signatory that the signer is so authorized and the title or position the signer holds in the proposer’s organization.  The cover letter shall include the following:
  • The proposer’s name, nature of organization (e.g. corporation, partnership, etc.), location of main office, address, telephone/fax numbers and email address of the person within the organization who will be the MBA’s primary contact concerning this proposal;
  • A statement that the proposal is an irrevocable offer for 60 days from the date when proposals are due, or longer by mutual agreement;
  • A statement that the proposer is ready, willing and able to provide the proposed services in a timely manner upon reasonable notice;
  • The identity of the key team personnel contract project manager and, key team personnel for Phases 1, 2, and/or 3 who will be assigned to provide the services required in the RFP.
  1. Executive Summary: Provide a two to five page overview of the entire proposal, describing the most important elements of the proposal.  Identify any subcontractors and discuss their proposed roles on the project.  Highlight key differentiators to address the needs in Phases 1, 2, and 3.
  2. Firm Qualifications: A proposal shall contain the following information regarding the proposer’s qualifications, including subcontractors in the following order:
    1. Provide a brief history and description of the Proposer’s organizational structure, including size, number of employees, capability and area(s) of specialization.
    2. Provide years of experience the firm has in consulting in the tolling industry.
    3. Identify what specific toll system work experience your firm has with electronic tolling, open road tolling, and interoperability with other tolling agencies.
    4. Provide firm’s experience in providing the services of an ORC.
    5. State the location of the office(s) from which the work on this contract is to be performed.
    6. Discuss the roles and qualification of key management and supervisory personnel identified in the Cover Letter who will be assigned to provide the services described to the MBA for Phases 1, 2, and 3.
    7. Provide a detailed discussion of the proposer’s qualifications and experience related to the Scope of Services, including subcontractors, for Phases 1, 2, and 3.
    8. Provide a list of subcontractors and describe what work they will perform on this project and what Phases they would participate in.
  3. Approach to providing the required services:
    1. Describe your firms understanding of this project;
    2. Discuss the proposer’s approach to project management:
  • Proposed management of the project schedule
  • Project communications plan
  • Planned formal meetings schedule
  • Project issues identification and escalation processes
  • Risk management plan
    1. Discuss the proposer’s approach to complete the procurement phase of this project (Phase 1).
    2. Discuss the proposer’s approach to acting as an ORC during the system completion phase (Phase 2).
    3. Discuss the proposer’s approach to assisting the MBA as an ORC, on an as needed basis, throughout the system’s operational life (Phase 3).
  1. Proposed timeline of services:
    1. Phase 1: Provide a preliminary timeline for completing the procurement of a tolling system vendor.
    2. Phase 2: Provide an estimated timeline for the new tolling system vendor to complete the job through MBA acceptance and satisfactory operation.
    3. Phase 3: Propose the lifetime of a new tolling system for the MBA.
  2. References: Responders to this RFP must submit at least three (3) prior client references.  These references must have contracted for projects of similar size, nature and complexity as that prescribed in this RFP.  The name, address, contact person, telephone number, and email address must be provided for each client reference.
  3. Proof-of-Insurance: During the period of this contract, the contractor, at its sole cost and expense, shall obtain and maintain, or cause to be obtained and maintained, commercial general liability insurance with a minimum limit of not less than one million dollars ($1,000,000 US) per occurrence (combined single limit) for bodily injury and property damage, and not less than one million dollars ($1,000,000 US) aggregate, for each personal injury liability, products-completed operations, premises operations, blanket contractual, and owners’ and contractors’ protective, and each accident.  Such insurance shall name the Mackinac Bridge Authority and all officers, agents and employees thereof as additional insured.


MBA reserves the right to reject any or all responses.  MBA makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy and/or completeness of any of the information provided in this RFP.  MBA further reserves the right to reject any or all bids, waive technicalities and to make awards in the best interest of the MBA.  MBA reserves the right to reject awarding a contract due to unacceptable past performance by a contractor.  The MBA contract manager and MBA shall have the final authority in selecting the awarded proposal.

Scoring of RFP response as well as a face-to-face interview, if requested by the MBA, will determine a selected consultant, but final determination will be based on an ability to negotiate the scope, schedule, and price.  The selected consultant will be determined based on the qualifications of all three phases outlined in the RFP, but the price proposal will first be negotiated for Phase 1 only.  Phases 2 and 3 will be added at a later date, based on the performance of Phase 1 and need.

MBA reserves the rights to suspend, withdraw, or amend this RFP at any time, and to reject any response not submitted in conformance with this RFP and any addenda hereto.  This RFP is not an offer and MBA is not issuing it under any statutory requirement.  MBA has determined that the selection of a contractor through an open, competitive process to be in the best interest to the public and MBA.  MBA’s decision with respect to the award of contracts pursuant to this RFP process shall be final.  Responses may be rejected if, in MBA’s sole judgment, they fail to meet the requirements of the RFP, are incomplete, conditional, or obscure, contain additions, deletions, alterations, errors, or other irregularities, or are submitted by respondents who are not experienced or capable of performing the Scope of Services.  MBA reserves the right to waive any of the foregoing, or any informality.

End of RFP