Midwest Urban Strategies (MUS, Inc.) is an equal opportunity employer.
Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to persons with disabilities.
Any agreement resulting from this RFP will be funded through grants provided by the US Department of Labor (US DOL). Any organization awarded a contractual agreement resulting from this RFP must comply with all applicable regulations and the terms and conditions of the grant provided by US DOL.
This section provides general and background information needed to understand the regulatory and programmatic context of this RFP. This section also describes important details regarding the services and stakeholders related to this RFP, as well as characteristics of any agreements that may result from this RFP.
About Midwest Urban Strategies
Midwest Urban Strategies (MUS) is an intermediary of urban workforce development boards (WDB) serving their local communities to connect the workforce ecosystem. This system includes employers, job seekers, training providers, and community partners all working together to better prepare jobseekers and support employers in the attraction and retention of talent. By combining innovative and traditional workforce development practices with economic development strategies, these WDBs are driving change in their local economies. Through MUS’s organizing, these WDBs share and apply best practices in workforce development, integrating efforts and resources to fully maximize federal, state, and local funds that support a competitive regional workforce system aimed at revitalizing the Midwest economy.
The goal of MUS is to take the micro-successes and strengths of each WDB and replicate them on a regional scale. Through intentional industry engagement that connects employers to well-prepared workers, MUS improves the effectiveness and efficiency of the workforce system (both regionally and locally) there by bolstering the Midwest’s place within the national economy.
The consortium emerged in2014 in response to a shift in policy at the Department of Labor and out of a shared set of challenges that impacted urban communities. From the Ferguson (MO) uprisings to the Detroit rebirth, the Midwest’s urban communities were facing an inflection point. At the center of that point was the disjointed labor market and the need to connect people to family sustaining jobs and (as the national economy continued its rebound) employers to qualified job seekers.
Between 2015 and 2021 Midwest Urban Strategies applied for and secured more than $24M in federal grants to coordinate regional economic development, design and deliver career-track training, and engage local employers in a regional growth strategy. Its collective impact model ensured that more investment was made in employer-led models focused on regional growth driven from coordinated planning and administration that is centralized and vetted by a “backbone organization”.
Purpose of this RFP
The purpose of this Request for Proposals (RFP) is to solicit competitive proposals on behalf of Midwest Urban Strategies (MUS) to retain one (1) Accounting Services Provider to provide up to 20 hours of monthly accounting services to include monthly journal entries in Quick books, monthly accrual calculations, audit preparation, end of year journal entry adjustments, compliance oversight, technical assistance, program and fiscal support for federal Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration grants. These responsibilities will include supporting MUS staff in calculating and processing DOL quarterly financial reports. The fiscal year end completion would allow up to an additional 20 hours when the fiscal year ends.
The Midwest Urban Strategies consortium (“The Consortium”). The Consortium represents a coordinated effort on behalf of urban WDBs in the Midwest to bolster regional planning through systematic approaches in attracting and retaining businesses and talent. Together, these partners share and apply best practices in workforce development and integrate efforts and resources to fully maximize federal, state and local funds and initiatives to build a competitive regional workforce system aimed at revitalizing the Midwest economy. MUS seeks to procure the expertise of an Accounting Services Provider with the skill set required to include financial accounting as well as fiscal management for the Pathway Home grant.
Who can apply?
Eligible applicants include non-profit and for-profit organizations, private sector entities, educational institutions, community-based organizations, and other entities operating in accordance with federal, state and local law. Applicants must be an incorporated organization. Eligible applicants must be in good standing with the federal government, not debarred, and have proof of insurance and a DUNS number. Organizations currently barred, suspended, proposed for debarment, declared ineligible or voluntarily excluded from participation in this transaction by a Federal, State, City or County department/agency, quasi-governmental agency, or Midwest Urban Strategies are ineligible to apply. See Office of Management and Budget’s Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards at 2 CFR 200.
Applicant Competency – All applicants must have the technical competence, knowledge and expertise, management and administrative capabilities and capacity, professional staff, financial resources and stability, and administrative and fiscal systems to carry-out the work described in this RFP.
Qualifications must include, but are not limited to:
- Significant and long-term experience and capacity providing accounting services.
- Robust partnerships with organizations, businesses, and government agencies.
-Experience administering federal job training grants.
Midwest Urban Strategies requires assurance that the selected applicant(s)’ performance of the terms and conditions of any agreement resulting from this RFP be undertaken in accordance with the highest level of integrity and business ethics. Applicants are responsible for being knowledgeable of all laws, regulations, rules, and policies of the funding sources identified in this RFP. If Midwest Urban Strategies determines, at its sole discretion, that the selected applicant(s) is not responsible, that it does not possess the administrative, fiscal, and/or technical resources and capabilities necessary to successfully perform under the terms and conditions of an agreement, it shall terminate the agreement immediately.
The selected applicant will begin delivering the full range of services as described below at a mutually agreed upon date.
Statement of Work
All proposals must be concise, well-organized, and demonstrate how your proposed services, approach and methodology, qualifications, experience, and terms meet or exceed Midwest Urban Strategies’ requirements.
How to Apply
Interested and qualified applicants must submit proposals by October 8, 2021 at 5:00 pm CST to RFQs@midwesturbanstrategies.com. Emails must have the subject line “Midwest Urban Strategies Accounting Service Delivery Proposal [Organization name].” Late or incomplete proposals will not be considered. Proposals must be submitted in 12-point, Times New Roman font, double-spaced with 1-inch page margins. Your proposal may not be considered if page limitations and formatting requirements are not met. Your proposal must contain all the content below in the same general order illustrated. Strong proposals will demonstrate a full understanding of the requirements described throughout this RFP and establish the capacity, expertise and program design needed to meet the required standards and goals:
A. Executive Summary – Include each of the following: (maximum 1 page)
a. Overview of the organization’s qualifications and alignment with the services sought by this RFP.
b. The total annual cost for services.
B. Organization Description – Describe each of the following for your organization: (maximum 1 page)
a. Basic organizational description, including but not limited to year established, legal status, governance structure, mission, principal programs and services, executive leadership, annual budget and number of full-time staff.
b. Past experience in accounting management services similar in size and scope to that required by this RFP.
c. Administrative and fiscal capacity, including but not limited to your organization’s proven ability to provide fiscal support and oversight, utilize information systems, manage resources and personnel, and produce timely and accurate reports.
C. Service Description – Provide a work plan for completing this project (maximum of 5pages). Include an estimate of the hours you believe it will take for your team to complete each phase of work.
D. Cost – Provide a budget for this project, including an itemization of expected direct and indirect costs. We anticipate awarding a time and materials contract with a maximum dollar amount; accordingly, your proposal must include:
a. Hourly rates for personnel assigned to the project;
b. An estimate of the total number of days or hours the applicant expects to bill for the project;
c. An estimate of the total cost of the project, including expenses.
E. References – Provide professional references(including full contact information) concerning the applicant’s
performance on three comparable projects
F. Other Information – You may provide other information or materials that you believe is relevant to our evaluation or that provides additional features or value.
Review and Selection Process
All proposals received by the submission deadline will be initially reviewed by MUS for completeness and compliance with the specifications and requirements contained in this RFP. Proposals passing the initial review will be scored by qualified evaluators according to the criteria below, with attention to clarity, completeness, and quality. High scoring proposals will clearly demonstrate an ability and likelihood to effectively perform the Statement of Work and meet the standards and intended outcomes of this RFP. Select applicants may be requested to participate in presentations or discussions with proposal evaluators and other Midwest Urban Strategies staff. Selection of a proposal for contract award will be subject to successful contract negotiations.
Scoring for the required sectionsof the proposal will be assigned as follows:
Proposal Review Scoring Rubric
1. Executive Summary Required, but not scored
2. Organization Description - 20 points
3. Service Description - 50 points
4. Cost - 30 points
5 & 6. References & Other Information May support scores of related proposal sections
Total points available - 100 points
The selected applicant will be invited to negotiate a contract for services based on the project described in the proposal and stipulations of the funding source.
Review Timeline (all dates are subject to change):
Release of RFP:
October 5, 2021
Questions Regarding this RFQ due:
October 7, 2021 by 5:00 pm CST
Bid due date:
October 8, 2021 by 5:00 pm CST
Selection of providers:
October 12, 2021
Questions or Requests
All questions or requests for additional information must be made in writing to RFQs@midwesturbanstrategies.comby 5:00pm CST on October 7, 2021. Answers will be posted publicly at www.MidwestUrbanStrategies.comInterested parties are encouraged to check the website frequently for updates. Questions received after 5:00 PM CST on October 7, 2021, will not be answered.
· This Request for Proposals (RFP) does not commit Midwest Urban Strategies to award a contract.
· Midwest Urban Strategies may select a firm based on its initial proposal received, without discussion of the proposal. Accordingly, each proposal should be submitted on the most favorable terms, from a price and technical standpoint, that the bidder can submit to Midwest Urban Strategies. Midwest Urban Strategies may, however, have discussions with those firms it deems in its discretion to fall within a competitive range.
· Midwest Urban Strategies reserves the right to request additional information from any applicant, request oral presentations from applicants, or conduct site visits from any applicant before a contract award.
· Midwest Urban Strategies reserves the right to fund portions of a proposal, or to reject any and all proposals in whole or in part. Rejection of a portion of a proposal does not necessarily negate the entire proposal.
· Midwest Urban Strategies may, at its discretion, adjust the level of funding provided to successful bidders under this RFP and/or consider the funding of proposals not initially funded under this RFP at a later date.
· No costs will be paid to cover the expense of preparing a proposal or procuring a contract for services or supplies.
· All data, material, and documentation originated and prepared by the bidder pursuant to the contract shall belong exclusively to Midwest Urban Strategies and be subject to disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act, Right to Know Law, or other applicable legislation.
· The contract award will not be final until Midwest Urban Strategies and the successful bidder have executed a mutually satisfactory contractual agreement. Midwest Urban Strategies reserves the right to make an award without further discussion of the proposal submitted. No activity may begin prior to final Midwest Urban Strategies approval of the award and execution of a contractual agreement between the successful bidder and Midwest Urban Strategies.
· The submission of the proposal warrants that the costs quoted for services in response to the RFP are not in excess of those that would be charged any other individual for the same services performed by the bidder.
· Applicants are advised that most documents in the possession of Midwest Urban Strategies are considered public records and subject to disclosure. Midwest Urban Strategies reserves the right to issue additional RFPs if and when it is in Midwest Urban Strategies’ best interest todo so and, may elect to negotiate and issue multi-year contracts to successful bidders under this or subsequent RFPs.
· All programs and activities are designated as equal opportunity employers/programs. The proposing Contractor agrees to follow all regulations as stipulated in 29 CFR part 38. Auxiliary aids and servicesare available upon request to individuals with disabilities. Contact staff to request assistance with access to this RFP.
All programs and activities are designated as equalopportunity employers/programs. Auxiliary aids and services are available uponrequest to individuals with disabilities. Contactstaff to request