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State Events Will Spotlight Broadband Work

The upcoming virtual sessions will center on contract opportunities for the Middle-Mile Broadband Network.

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Two high-visibility state departments will hold events this month aimed at connecting IT vendors with significant ongoing technology work.

The California Department of Technology (CDT), the state’s technology agency, and the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), which manages highways and freeways statewide, will hold two “virtual outreach and engagement sessions for contract opportunities on the Middle-Mile Broadband Network.” Here’s what is known about the events:

  • CDT and Caltrans will host two gatherings around “SB/DVBE Opportunities for MMBI Contracts,” aimed at small business (SB) and disabled veteran business enterprise (DVBE) and spotlighting the state’s Middle-Mile Broadband Initiative (MMBI). The first is from 9:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m. Thursday, and interested companies can register here. The second is from 1 p.m.-3 p.m. Nov. 29, and interested companies can register here. The host for both will be Nick Beard, CDT senior business manager and MMBI manager.
  • The agenda for both events will summarize the MMBI project, cover scope and more on the use of job order contracting (JOC) and construction manager/general contractor (CMGC). (Find a preliminary list of projects using JOC and CMGC here, in an August Middle-Mile Advisory Committee meeting agenda. Per the agenda, these projects may constitute “as much as 2,000 miles or 20 percent of the entire network” and are “part of a broader potential construction contracting effort this fall.” There will also be opportunities for SB, DVBE and minority-owned businesses to “engage with prime contractors” for MMBI projects, engagement breakout sessions, a discussion period and a question-and-answer period.
  • In its news release, CDT directs vendors to Cal eProcure, the state contracts register, to find existing broadband opportunities; as of this writing, the state has 12 active opportunities, all of which are middle mile. Only one closes this month – a request for qualifications from Caltrans seeking a consultant to develop project report and environmental documents and provide architectural and engineering services at an estimated contract value of $3.2 million-$5.2 million. Responses are due by 10 a.m. Nov. 28. Other opportunities now open – all findable by searching “broadband” on Cal eProcure – include a Request for Innovative Ideas (RFI2) solicitation by CDT for the California Middle-Mile Broadband Network, “relating to solutions including dark fiber, joint builds or purchase options.” Here, questions are due by Tuesday and Innovation Concept Papers are due by 5 p.m. Dec. 2.
Theo Douglas is Assistant Managing Editor of Industry Insider — California.