REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS:NATURAL RESOURCE INVENTORY Town of New Paltz, Ulster County, New York

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REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS

NATURAL RESOURCE INVENTORY

Town of New Paltz, Ulster County, New York

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The Town of New Paltz Board requests proposals and qualifications to prepare a Natural Resource Inventory (NRI) for the Town.  The NRI will identify natural resources throughout the Town; explain their significance to the New Paltz community; and provide guidance for land use planning, land development, and conservation.  The NRI will be developed as a reference document for use by Town agencies, landowners, and others seeking information about New Paltz’s resources and landscapes.  Funding will be from a grant to the Town from the Hudson River Estuary Program of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC).  

Background documents:  A 2014 document published by the NYS DEC, “Creating a Natural Resources Inventory” describes an NRI and what should be included.  Examples of recently completed NRIs can be found for the Town of Rosendale and the Town of Pleasant Valley on their respective websites.  The NRI will consist of a series of web maps using an ArcGIS Online Story Map template with tabs. For examples, visit https://storymaps.arcgis.com/en/app-list/map-series/. The Story Map will be developed using the New Paltz EnCB ArcGIS Online license.

Responsive proposals must be submitted in a sealed envelope, be identified as “Response to Request for Proposal for Natural Resources Inventory”, and be received by the Town Clerk at Town Hall, 52 Clearwater Road, New Paltz NY by 2:00 p.m. on June 15, 2018.

The Town of New Paltz Board reserves the right to reject any and all proposals if it deems it necessary in the best interest of the citizens of the Town. 

Notice of this RFP will be published in a local newspaper and posted on the Town’s Website and other venues to solicit responses from interested and qualified firms.

The consultant selected for this project will work with the Town of New Paltz Environmental Conservation Board (EnCB) to develop the NRI outline, format, and content; to gather and compile information; to prepare the NRI maps and report; and to present the draft and final NRI in public meetings.

The consultant will gather existing data on the presence, condition, and distribution of natural resources throughout the Town, including bedrock and surficial geology, soils, water resources, biological resources, farmland resources, scenic resources, and recreation resources. Sources for data and information will include, but not be limited to, the EnCB GIS data; NYS GIS Clearinghouse; state, county, and Town agencies; private organizations; published literature; private interviews; and responses from Townspeople.  The EnCB will provide all local or proprietary GIS data sets (steep slopes, Village wetlands, Shawangunk habitats, road closures, Ulster habitat cores, open habitats, Northern Wallkill priority areas, protected lands, scenic viewpoints).

SCOPE

The NRI report will include but not be limited to:

1. Web maps illustrating the extent and distribution of natural resources throughout the Town (Arc GIS Online Story Map Series), and 4 large-format printouts of these maps

2. Development of an AGOL application using the EnCB license

3. Description of methods and process (following guidance in DEC NRI guidebook)

4. Narrative descriptions of resources shown on maps and discussion of their significance to ecosystems and services to and use by the human community

5. Photos of the Town landscapes, habitats, and organisms (photos gathered and selected by the EnCB)

6. Discussion of resources of conservation concern, threats to those resources, and recommendations for conservation measures that could be carried out by landowners and municipal agencies

7. Explicit link to climate resilience and adaptation via discussion of current and predicted effects of climate change on resources of concern; the implications for land uses; and measures that will improve resiliency of ecosystems, land, and infrastructure in response to climate change

8. Explanation of how to use the information in the NRI for land use planning, municipal policy-making, and environmental reviews of development projects.

9. Integration of priority areas identified in the Town Open Space Plan and general conservation principles.

10. Draft of a local law to adopt the NRI and amend the Town Comprehensive Plan (see NRI guidebook)

The consultant will submit drafts of the NRI for review by the EnCB and the Hudson River Estuary Program at several stages, and the NRI will be considered complete upon the EnCB’s approval of the final report.

MEETINGS

The consultant will correspond with the EnCB throughout the course of preparing the NRI and will meet with the EnCB and the staff of the Hudson River Estuary Program at the following junctures, at a minimum:

1. At the project kick-off to discuss the general approach; proposed outline; overall project timelines; expectations of the funder; sources of data and information; contributions by the EnCB; and extent, types, and timelines of public outreach both during preparation and after completion of the NRI.

2. After submission of the first and second drafts to discuss the EnCB’s and Estuary Program’s review

3. During preparation for public meetings with the Town Board and the community.

DELIVERABLES

1. ArcGIS Online Story Map Series and template (to be used for any future map updates)

2. Four final large-format maps presenting important water, habitat, and cultural resources for use by the Town Planning Board.                                                                                                                          3. One large-format draft map and four copies of each draft report for review                                          4. The final NRI in pdf format, and 20 printed and bound full-color copies                                                5. The final GIS data used for preparing map figures in the NRI, including metadata for any new shapefiles for the NRI project                                                                                                                      6. Co-presentations with the EnCB at two meetings with the Town Board and public – one after first draft revision and one after final report is completed and approved by EnCB. 

TIMELINE

The NRI project is planned to begin in Fall, 2018; the exact start date will depend on approval of and execution of the grant contract between NYS DEC and the Town of New Paltz.  It is anticipated that the first draft of maps will be available 6 months from the start date, the first report draft will be available 2 months after that, and a public co-presentation of the revised first draft one month later.  The final report would be expected 12 months from the start date, i.e. Fall, 2019, and the co-presentation of the final NRI to the Town Board and public would take place within the following month.  The details of these timelines will be established with the consultant at the project kick-off meeting.

PAYMENT

Payment for services requires a monthly submission of a progress report and an invoice which sets out the services rendered, the individual who provided the services, and the reasonable and necessary time and costs incurred in providing those services.  Invoices will be audited before they are approved for payment.  The final invoice will be submitted upon completion and submission of all deliverables, anticipated to be Fall, 2019.

PROPOSAL REQUIREMETNTS

The proposal must include

  • A description of the NRI project as applicable to the Town of New Paltz
  • The range of data sources to be surveyed in the course of the project
  • A description of how the project will be carried out
  • The individuals who will conduct the work, their resumes, their particular qualifications and a summary of their experience with similar projects
  • An itemized budget, including hourly rates for services and identifying any other costs that may be charged for work performed by the selected consultant.  

RFP PROCESS INFORMATION

All qualification and requirements must be met, or capable of being met by the responding firm, or its proposal will be rejected as nonresponsive.

All responsive proposals will be reviewed by the EnCB, which will make recommendations to the Town Board.  Selection will be based on a staff review and evaluation of the consultant’s qualifications.  Past performance on projects of similar nature, magnitude, and complexity will be the principal evaluation factors.  The committee may short-list firms for a formal interview process.

The Town Board will consider the recommendations of the EnCB, review the qualified responses to this RFP, and select a qualified, responsive firm that can provide the NRI services required by the Town Board in a cost efficient manner.

In considering responses to this request, the EnCB and Town Board will consider:

  • quality of the project description and thoroughness of the proposal
  • professional qualifications and experience of the individuals who will provide services
  • the experience preparing NRIs in communities of similar size
  • references demonstrating the ability of the responding firm to efficiently and effectively prepare an NRI.

PROPOSAL STATEMENT FORMAT

Section I (1 Page Max) – Letter of Interest: The Letter of Interest should identify the project, the name of the firm, name of the firm’s primary contact, address, telephone number, fax number and email address.

Section II – Business Organization and Resumes (3 Pages Max) - The name and address of the firm’s organization and the branch office, if any, that will provide the services herein shall be stated.  Resumes showing professional training and qualifications, relevant experience, and office locations of the principal individual(s) that will provide services should be attached. If any work will be performed outside the identified office on a regular basis, the response shall identify the nature of that work, the person who will perform it, and the location of the office

Town consultants are subject to the Town’s Code of Ethics.  The response must include a statement from the firm that either there is not, to the best of their knowledge, any circumstances that would cause a conflict of interest in performing these services for the Town of New Paltz, or an explanation of any circumstances that might result in a conflict of interest.

Section III – Statement of Intent (Max 1 Page) – The Statement of Intent shall describe the proposer’s approach to the successful implementation of the proposed scope of services, including:

  1.  A description of the Consultant’s understanding and approach to the Town’s proposed scope of services, including any recommended changes or revisions.
  2. An outline of proposed methodology
  3. An itemized budget
  4. Links to similar completed projects

Section IV - References and Past Experiences (Max 3 Pages) –  Provide three public agency references for similar work done by the person(s) that will be providing services to the Town, particularly experience in preparing NRIs.

All things being equal, preference will be given to proposers with experience working with municipalities in Ulster County or abutting counties in the mid-Hudson Valley and/or have key personnel located within the mid-Hudson Valley.