MARSHFIELD, WI (OnFocus) – During Tuesday’s meeting, the City of Marshfield Finance, Budget, and Personnel Committee received an update from City Administrator Steve Barg on the search for a citywide property assessment firm.
In May, it was originally decided that the City would put out a Request for Proposal (RFP) to try to gauge potential candidates to fill the position. At Tuesday’s meeting however, Barg proposed that the City use a Request For Qualification (RFQ) instead which involves less paperwork for the City and requires candidates to share their qualifications without the City setting pages upon pages of guidelines first.
Last year, the FBP Committee reviewed the City’s options for assessing services after the original 3-year contract with Grota Appraisals, LLC expired on December 31, 2021. The alternatives reviewed and discussed at that time were as follows:
1. Sign a 2-year extension of the original agreement, with a negotiated price increase
2. Solicit proposals for contract services using a Request for Proposals (RFP) process
3. Update the former City Assessor job description and seek to hire this staff position
Ultimately, the Committee recommended and the Council agreed to a one-year extension of the contract through December 31, 2021, with all terms staying the same, except for an adjustment in the contract price.
Barg said all parties currently involved in the transition were contacted and they collectively decided an RFQ would be the most beneficial option.
“We talked at some length with the current assessor Jim Toth with Grota and with the Deputy City Assessor, Keith [Pugh], just trying to get a sense of what our needs are and what type of firm might be the best fit for us,” Barg said. “One of the things we came to the conclusion of was sending out a 20-page RFP might not be in our best interest.”
Barg said the RFQ would identify qualified candidates by identifying who from the applying firm would be the key person involved with assessments and what they can bring to the table. It also helps candidates learn a little about the City’s size and the background behind why it is looking for a new firm.
“I think we got tied up a little bit in our team about what that RFP would all entail,” Barg said. “[We] came to the conclusion that maybe it was better to do an RFQ, find people who might be a fit. Not everyone wants to work in central Wisconsin. We’re not really metro areas. [We need to] find those firms that might be a good fit for us.”
Barg stated that two firms were already interested.
“I already know that there are two firms, at least, that are interested,” Barg said. “I suspect there will probably more.”
The city will look to get this matter settled before the December 31st deadline so that assessments may continue as scheduled in 2022.
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