REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS: DIB Seeking General Counsel
Posted: Feb 18, 2021 6:06 PMUpdated: Apr 6, 2021 2:36 PM
Proposals are now being solicited from experienced and qualified Florida attorneys or law firms to provide legal services as General Counsel for the Pensacola Downtown Improvement Board (DIB), a political subdivision established by the Florida Legislature in 1972.  BACKGROUND The mission of the DIB is (i) to market downtown Pensacola to business prospects and investors, (ii) to serve as an advocate for projects necessary to revitalize downtown Pensacola and to create in downtown a thriving urban neighborhood; (iii) to enhance downtown Pensacola as a place to work, visit, live and be entertained, and; (iv) to raise awareness of downtown Pensacola as an important business, residential, cultural and entertainment center in the Triangle metropolitan area. The DIB was incorporated as a dependant special district of the City of Pensacola per Chapter 189, Florida Statutes.  The DIB was formed in April 1972.  The long-term strategy of the DIB is formulated by an all-volunteer Board of Directors, comprised of Downtown property and business owners, while the day-to-day affairs are executed by the DIB’s Executive Director and staff. LEGAL REQUIREMENTS All Federal, State, County, and local laws, ordinances, rules and regulations that in any manner affect the items covered herein shall apply, including but not limited to the DIB Special Act, Laws of Florida, Section 72-655 as amended.  This RFP and the resulting contract will be made and ended in Escambia County, Florida and shall be governed by the laws of the State of Florida. A proposed contract for services shall accompany the proposal.  SERVICES TO BE PERFORMED The DIB seeks to engage an attorney with prior experience (paid or unpaid) as General Counsel of a public agency to be responsible for all facets of the general types of legal issues that might arise for such a position. The General Counsel will be expected to keep current on all aspects of law relevant to a special district and provide counsel and support to the Board and Executive Director in the following ways:  1. Attendance at meetings of the Board of Directors as requested by the board for the purpose of providing legal services and consultation; 2. Attendance at such other meetings as requested by the Board of Directors or Executive Director; 3. Preparation of resolutions, contracts, and the like concerning DIB business; 4. Preparation of written legal opinions on matters concerning the DIB at the request of the Board of Directors or the Executive Director; 5. Review of contracts, bid specifications, and purchasing documents for the purpose of legal and policy compliance, appropriate risk transfer, and risk analysis and avoidance; 6. Consultation with DIB staff regarding personnel matters, litigation, and other matters concerning DIB business; 7. Analysis of proposed or enacted legislation, published legal opinions, and other matters that may have an impact on the operations of the DIB; 8. Advising the DIB as to whether to file claims or commence litigation, and representing the DIB in connection with certain claims and litigation filed by or against the DIB except where, in the opinion of the General Counsel, special expertise is required; 9. Providing advice and assistance on matters of law related to the Florida Sunshine Statutes, conflict of interest,  the DIB enabling legislation, and in seeking advice from other public entities; 10. Provide legal assistance and consultation to DIB staff and directors on matters of property rights and property management, including trespass, encroachment, lessee obligations, easements, and access; and 11. Such other activities as may arise from time to time and as requested by the Board of Directors or the Executive Director.  YOUR RESPONSE TO THIS RFP Proposals must be submitted in writing and describe in adequate detail the following elements:  a.) a description of the attorney’s qualifications and experience, including areas of expertise, accomplishments, previous employers and previous or current public sector clients, b.) a description of the law firm including the size of the firm, others attorneys and support staff, location of the firm, and scope of its practice, c.) a resume including years of experience, education, and professional affiliations and licenses, d.) a description of legal services currently being  performed or previously performed for public agencies,  e.) a description of backup attorney(s) within the firm who would be available in the absence of the designated General Counsel,  f.) describe regulatory action, tax liens, or legal sanctions taken or pending against the attorney or firm, g.) the addition of any “value-added” services that the responding attorney might bring to the engagement beyond the scope listed above, and h.) the total annual cost for each of next three years that the attorney or law firm proposes to provide the legal services desired.  The Proposals shall also include certificates of insurance for Workers’ Compensation to meet statutory limits in the State of Florida and professional liability insurance of no less than two million ($2,000,000.00) dollars.  Proposals will be accepted during normal business hours via US Mail, hand-delivery, or courier service in the offices of the Pensacola Downtown Improvement Board at 226 South Palafox Place – Suite 106, Pensacola, Florida 32502 until 4:00 p.m. (central time) on Wednesday, April 14, 2021. Eight copies of the complete response to this RFP are required. Proposals shall clearly indicate the legal name, address, telephone number and e-mail address of the Proposer (company, firm, and partnership, individual). Proposals shall be signed above the typed or printed name and title of the signer. The signer shall have the authority to bind the Proposer to the submitted proposal. All expenses for preparation and submission of the RFP to the DIB are to be borne by the Proposer. The Proposals will be opened at 5:00 PM (Central) at 226 South Palafox Place – Suite 106, Pensacola, Florida 32502 on Wednesday, April 14, 2021.  EVALUATION OF PROPOSALS The DIB seeks to obtain and purchase all services noted above at the lowest possible cost.  In its evaluation of the proposals received, the DIB will consider and factor the cost structure proposed, compliance with the noted specifications, the relevant experience of the respondents, and understanding of DIB mission and authority.  An examination of the firm’s ability to perform the services desired, the reputation of the officers or representatives assigned to provide legal services on behalf of the DIB, and the location of its facilities may also, at the sole discretion of the DIB, be part of the criteria used to select an acceptable vendor before a contract is offered.  The DIB will meet on April 27, 2021 to consider the proposals and may elect to interview one or more of the proposers before a contract is offered at the meeting on April 27, 2021 or at a subsequent meeting on May 25, 2021.  The successful proposer must be prepared to begin work no later than June 14, 2021.  In evaluating proposals, the DIB will consider all information that it deems relevant for awarding a contract including, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, price, ability to perform, experience and past performance. With regards to any proposals or proposals submitted in response hereto, to the extent permitted by law the DIB reserves the right to waive any errors, omissions, irregularities, and deviations if the DIB determines that such action is in the best interest of the DIB and/or public health, safety and/or welfare. Furthermore, to the extent permitted by law the DIB may waive any requirement or provision hereof and reserves the right to modify the requirements referenced herein, to reject any and all proposals, to modify (with the approval of the proposing party) the proposal, to negotiate with any proposing party regarding any price, term and/or condition, including increasing or decreasing a proposed price and/or the scope of the project.  This RFP is utilized merely as a vehicle to facilitate the evaluation of a Proposers and proposals. Except as required by law this RFP shall not in any manner grant and shall not be construed in any manner grant rights, benefits or expectations of any manner whatsoever to any person interested in submitting, contemplating submitting, or who in fact does submit a proposal in response hereto. The final terms and conditions of any project contemplated herein may be negotiated between DIB and any responsive Proposer and, except as required by law, the DIB shall not be required to accept any proposal or negotiate with any responsive Proposer notwithstanding perceived favorable provisions of price, time of performance, experience, quality of service, etc., contained in a responsive proposal. The DIB reserves the right to negotiate a proposal in the best interest of the DIB which may include adding or deleting terms and conditions from those specified herein and/or from the proposal upon by a responsive Proposer or contained in a responsive Proposer’s proposal.  QUESTIONS AND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Questions regarding this RFP process and questions relative to the scope of services shall be addressed to Walker Wilson, DIB Executive Director, in writing at [email protected] and be received no later than 4:00 P.M. (Central) on March 31, 2021. Any interpretations, clarifications, or changes made will be in the form of written addenda issued by April 7, 2021. Oral answers will not be authoritative.  PUBLIC ENTITY CRIMES Pursuant to Florida Statutes Section 287.133(2)(a), are hereby notified that a person or affiliate who has been placed on the convicted vendor list following a conviction for a public entity crime may not submit a bid, proposal, or reply on a contract to provide any goods or services to a public entity (defined as the State of Florida, any of its departments or agencies, or any political subdivision); may not submit a bid, proposal, or reply on a contract with a public entity for the construction or repair of a public building or public work; may not submit bids, proposals or replies on leases of real property to a public entity; may not be awarded or perform work as a contractor, supplier, subcontractor, or consultant under contract with any public entity; and may not transact business with any public entity in excess of the threshold amount provided in Florida Statutes Section 287.017 for CATEGORY TWO  for a period of thirty-six (36) months from the date of being placed on the convicted vendor list. A “public entity crime” means a violation of any state or federal law by a person with respect to and directly related to the transaction of business with any public entity or with an agency or political subdivision of any other state or with the United States, including, but not limited to, any bid, proposal, reply, or contract for goods or services, any lease for real property, or any contract for the construction or repair of a public building or public work, involving antitrust, fraud, theft, bribery, collusion, racketeering, conspiracy, or material misrepresentation.  PROPRIETARY/CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION Proposers are hereby notified that all information submitted as part of, or in support of, proposals will be available for public inspection after opening of proposals, in compliance with Chapters 119 and 286, Florida Statutes, “Public Records Law” and the “Government and Sunshine Law” respectively.  EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY In connection with carrying out any project, the selected Proposer shall not ever have engaged in, and shall not during the term of the contract engage in, any discrimination against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, national origin, age, or physical handicap. PROTEST PROCEDURES If a proposal of a Proposer is deemed non-responsive or non-responsible, the Executive Director of the DIB shall provide written notice of the decision to all Proposers. The Executive Director of the DIB shall provide written notice of the decision to all the Proposers of an award of a contract. The procedures outlined under Section 120.57(3), Florida Statutes shall be utilized to resolve any protests of a decision of the DIBarising from the contract solicitation or award process under this RFP with the exception that any person who is adversely affected by  a decision of the DIBarising from the contract solicitation or award process under this RFP shall file with the Executive Director of the DIB a written notice of protest in writing within 72 hours after the a proposer’s receipt of the written notice of the decision from the Executive Director of the DIB. Any Proposer filing a protest shall submit with its protest a protest bond, payable to the DIB, in the amount of fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000).  If the protest is decided in the protester's favor the entire protest bond is returned. If the protest is not decided in the protester's favor the protest shall be forfeited to the DIB.  The protest bond shall be in the form of a cashier's check. 
Win $100 By Shopping Downtown With The "All I Want" Giveaway!
Posted: Nov 11, 2020 5:22 PMUpdated: Nov 11, 2020 6:16 PM
Friends of Downtown Pensacola is giving 12 $100 downtown gift cards to 12 lucky shoppers in the “All I Want” Giveaway that returns today, November 10. To enter, participants must submit photos of their receipts from downtown merchants dated between Nov. 10 and Dec. 12. Contest entry form and complete rules are available online at: www.downtownpensacola.shop.  For every $10 spent in downtown shops, restaurants, bars, galleries and businesses, the participant will receive one contest entry. At the end of the contest period, 12 winners will be randomly selected and each awarded with a $100 downtown gift card. “Downtown Pensacola offers a huge selection of unique gifts for those looking to do their holiday shopping,” said Walker Wilson, Friends of Downtown director. “Here you can enjoy holiday events, craft breweries, art galleries, fine dining, beautiful holiday lights and everything in between, and you can earn the chance to win $100 in the process!” The promotion, now in its third year, is part of the First City Lights Festival that offers a season-long line up of holiday happenings from cultural events to fine dining in Pensacola’s downtown district. The festival officially kicks off on Black Friday with the lighting of half a million downtown lights in collaboration with Winterfest. The event is supported by City of Pensacola and sponsored by Gulf Power, Studer Properties, JAH Power Services, Inc., Service Electric Co., Roberson Underground Utility, LLC, L30 Consulting, LLC, and Pure Pilates.
Palafox Market Returns, Saturday, October 3rd!
Posted: Sep 24, 2020 3:24 PMUpdated: Sep 24, 2020 4:26 PM
The Downtown Improvement Board has announced it will reopen Palafox Market on October 3rd at its regular location in MLK, Jr. Plaza in Downtown Pensacola. The iconic farmers market has been closed for several months in response to the City’s moratorium on public events due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In a carefully planned, phased reopening, Palafox Market will launch with about half its regular vendors, showcasing food, farm produce and products geared towards safety and sanitation such as handmade soaps and face masks. Organizers are working hard to ensure that shoppers and vendors can enjoy the market safely. To minimize crowding and maintain social distancing guidelines, the market layout will be temporarily changed, with vendor booths arranged in an alternating pattern so that half of the booths face out towards Palafox Street and half face in towards the MLK, Jr. Plaza walkway. Organizers plan to expand Palafox Market back to its full capacity as quickly as it’s possible to do so without negatively impacting COVID numbers. Additional vendor and visitor safety precautions include, but are not limited to:●  Increased physical space between vendors.●  Face coverings are required by all in attendance.●  No vendor shall provide/offer samples, unless individually packaged.●  All vendors will be required to wear gloves (and gloves must be changed regularly.)●  All vendors will be required to display products at the front of their stall. Customers will not be allowed to enter vendor stalls to avoid crowding.●  Security will be present to monitor large groups of people and assist with controlling proper social distancing. 
What's Open in Downtown Pensacola After Hurricane Sally?
Posted: Sep 22, 2020 2:52 PMUpdated: Dec 10, 2020 10:01 PM
Are you looking for downtown businesses that are currently open after the impacts of Hurricane Sally? Here is a list to help you continue to support local. We will continue to update this list as we receive additional information.- Angelena’s Pensacola- Perfect Plain Brewing Co.- Garden & Grain- A&J Mug Shop- Pure Pilates- Bodacious Shops- Bodacious Bookstore and Cafe- Bodacious Brew Thru- Jordan Valley Downtown- Peterbrooke Chocolatier Pensacola Palafox- The Wine Bar on Palafox- SCOUT Boutique- Jo Rich Beauty- Stay The Spa- Schmidt's Music- Palafox Computers Inc.- Chill Cryotherapy- Ride Society- SaBai Thai SOJ- Pure Barre- Bubba's Sweet Spot- Blend Lounge - Pensacola- Taco Agave- World of Beer- Graffiti Pizza- The Garden at Palafox + Main - formerly Al Fresco- The Nest General Store- Wilfrid's Barber and Fine Goods- Nomadic’s Cafe- Escape on Palafox- The 5 Barrel- Jewelers Trade Shop- Fosko Coffee Barre- SVN Southland- Play Pensacola- Smart Bank- Urban Objects- Moonflower salon- Ever'man Cooperative Grocery & Cafe- NYN's BADLANDS "a roadside bar"- O'Riley's Irish Pub Downtown- Elebash Jewelry Company- Cigar Factory Pensacola- Anytime Fitness - Downtown Pensacola- Quayside Art Gallery- Odd Colony Brewing Co.- Disko Lemonade at Southtowne- The Tin Cow- Polonza Bistro- Blue Morning Gallery- Jaco's Bayfront Bar & Grille- Dog House Deli Downtown- Five Sisters Blues Cafe- The Aragon Cafe- Drip Parlor Downtown- Cycle Joint- Union Public House- Pot Roast & Pinot- Cactus Cantina- Emerald Republic Brewing- Gateway Cafe- Casks & Flights- V. Paul's- Bluejay's Bakery- Khon’s on Palafox- Jackson’s Steakhouse- Rusted Arrow Mercantile- Fish House- Don Alans- The Cabaret- Aragon Wine Market- The Nest General Store
Talking Trash: DIB's New Sign Campaign Uses Humor to Help Prevent Litter
Posted: Aug 6, 2020 6:22 PMUpdated: Sep 24, 2020 11:30 PM
The Downtown Improvement Board is on a mission to help you locate–and use–a downtown trash can. The organization recently launched a sign and sidewalk decal campaign that relies on humor and positive reinforcement to address a longstanding litter problem. It is designed to achieve something that’s not easy to do: make it fun to use a trash can.Litter isn’t unique to Pensacola but it’s a problem that has gotten more prevalent as downtown has flourished. A 2009 Keep America Beautiful study showed that litter cleanup in our country costs more than $11.5 billion each year. It also adversely affects tourism, retail and restaurant sales, property values and the quality of life for everyone who lives, works and visits. DIB ambassadors picked up 43,895 pounds of trash in the district during the first six months of its fiscal year, Oct. 1, 2019-Mar. 31, 2020, and keeping downtown clean ranks among the top goals on the DIB’s priority list. “Downtown Pensacola is a high-traffic core that shapes the overall perception of our city,” said Dees, executive director of the Downtown Improvement Board. “When it comes to keeping our sidewalks clean, there really is no excuse for not figuring this out.” Though litter is a serious issue, Dees hopes that a litter prevention campaign based on humor will get people talking—and disposing. “We’re tackling the challenge of making people stop and think,” Dees said. Quotes such as “Fill me up, Buttercup,” and “Talk dirty to me,” basketball free-throw lines and a hop-scotch board give people an incentive to engage and use a trash can instead of leaving their cigarette butt, napkin or other debris on the sidewalk or street, she said. “Combined with additional trash receptacles we installed over the past year, the anti-litter campaign will hopefully change behavior and be a vehicle for a long-term, sustainable change for downtown.”The DIB’s mission statement is to enhance the district’s quality of life and economic success by creating a cleaner, safer and more enjoyable environment, and the anti-litter initiative is designed to spread awareness of the issue and incite action in a light-hearted way. Here are some other ways that the DIB is working towards its mission.COVID-19 Safety:The DIB also recently installed sidewalk decals to educate downtown residents and visitors on CDC safety guidelines. The decals communicate ways for the public to remain safe and healthy amid COVID-19 and support the City of Pensacola mandate issued on June 26 that requires all patrons and employees at businesses within City limits to wear a protective face mask. To assist in the implementation of this city order, The DIB is also providing free face coverings to its downtown merchants, while supplies last.