E-Rate Category 2 FY2024

Contact Jennifer Domenech
Email jdomenech@pinemtnlibrary.org
Phone (706) 846-2186 ext. 1008

Project Summary Proposal Information
Description of Library System Term of Service
Current Network Environment Eligibility
Project Goal Award
  Cost of Service
Description of Work Expenses of Preparing Responses to this RFP
Scope of Work Form of Contract
Switch Requirements Assignment of Contract
Acceptance Milestones Cancellation of Contract
Network Services Contents of Proposal
Location Requirements Proposal Evaluation
  General Requirements
Attachments Applicable Law
Attachment A: Identification of Proposal Ethics in Public Contracting
Attachment B: Identification of Cost Phase Proposal Debarment Status
Attachment C: Evaluation Criteria Default
Questions from Respondents Exemption from Georgia Sales Tax



Project Summary

Pine Mountain Regional Library (PMRLS) invites vendors to submit proposals in accordance with the terms and conditions of this Request for Proposal. This Request for Proposal provides the requirements and evaluative criteria for managed gigabit POE+ switches, each with at least forty-eight (48) ports, all of which need to be 10 gigabit ports, to be installed at all library locations in support of high-speed connectivity between branches and the Library Headquarters. A detailed response from all prospective vendors, including pricing and equipment descriptions, will be required.

Description of Library System

Pine Mountain Regional Library System serves Meriwether, Taylor, Talbot and Upson counties in Georgia. It has seven locations throughout the system, and the Headquarters is housed at the main branch in Meriwether County.

Current Network Environment

Education Network of America (ENA) is the current Internet Service Provider for PMRLS. The Library currently receives between 500mbps and 1Gbps connectivity at its seven locations, and has Cisco SG200 switches. These switches were originally released in 2010, and the end-of-support date from Cisco was October 31, 2023. All locations currently use Meraki cloud-managed access points to control their wireless networks.

Manchester Public Library 1Gbps Cisco SG200-50FP 50-port Gigabit Full-PoE Smart Switch
Cisco SG200-50FP 50-port Gigabit Full-PoE Smart Switch
Cisco SG200-26FP 26-port Gigabit Full-PoE Smart Switch
Hightower Memorial Library 1Gbps Cisco SG200-50FP 50-port Gigabit Full-PoE Smart Switch
Greenville Public Library 500mbps Cisco SG200-50FP 50-port Gigabit Full-PoE Smart Switch
Butler Public Library 500mbps Cisco SG200-50FP 50-port Gigabit Full-PoE Smart Switch
Reynolds Community Library 500mbps Cisco SG200-50FP 50-port Gigabit Full-PoE Smart Switch
Talbot County Public Library 500mbps Cisco SG200-50FP 50-port Gigabit Full-PoE Smart Switch
Yatesville Public Library 500mbps Cisco SG200-26 26-port Gigabit Smart Switch


Project Goal

The overall goal is to increase the capability of the Library’s network to allow for growth over the next decade and to improve the information technology infrastructure supporting Library services and operations. Additionally, the Library seeks to increase its Cloud-based networking capability, to better serve its community in a timely manner.

Proposal Information

Term of Service

At a minimum, the term of services provided shall cover one year, beginning July 1, 2024 (the beginning of E-Rate funding year 2024). PMRLS reserves the right to renew this contract for up to four (4) additional twelve (12) month periods, pending availability of departmental appropriated funding, as well as contractor compliance with Library rules and policies.


  • Applicants must be a Schools and Libraries Division (SLD) certified service provider. Respondents shall provide their Service Provider Identification Number (SPIN), so their Service Provider Annual Certification (SPAC) filing for the current e-rate year can be verified.
  • Respondent must have been in continuous business for a minimum of three (3) years.
  • Upon acceptance of proposal, respondent must supply their E-Verify number to the Library.


  • PMRLS reserves the right to accept or reject any or all responses to this Request for Proposals and to enter into discussion and/or negotiations with one or more qualified respondents at the same time, if such actions are in the best interest of PMRLS.
  • PMRLS reserves the right to award this proposal in whole or in part to one (1) or several respondents thereof, as deemed to be in the best interest of the Library.
  • Failure to observe any of the instructions or conditions in this invitation to propose may constitute grounds for rejection of proposal.

Cost of Service

Cost will be weighed more heavily than any other factor. Although cost is a significant factor, it will not be the only factor. The general approach is to first identify all qualified, responsive respondents, and then to award the network to the lowest cost respondent in that group.

The cost of the proposal must be submitted in a separate, sealed envelope with the responder’s name, the request for proposal number, and the title of the request for proposals clearly identified on the outside of the envelope.

If there is reason to believe that an unreasonably low proposal has been made, it will be rejected. One method of measuring reasonableness is to divide the propose cost by a reasonable average hourly rate to show hours of effort that might be expected.

Expenses of Preparing Responses to this RFP

Costs incurred to prepare a proposal are solely those of the respondent. Nothing contained within this Request for Proposal is indicative of intent by Pine Mountain Regional Library System to reimburse the respondent, in whole or in part, for any costs associated with preparation, submission, or presentation of proposals.

Form of Contract

The successful respondent will be required to execute a written contract with PMRLS within four (4) weeks after acceptance of proposal. It is expressly understood and agreed by the respondents that the contractual obligations of Pine Mountain Regional Library System to the respondents are effective after the execution of a contract signed by all parties.

Assignment of Contract

A contract shall not be assignable by the respondent(s) in whole or in part without the written consent of Pine Mountain Regional Library System.

Cancellation of Contract

PMRLS reserves the right to cancel and terminate any resulting contract, in part or in whole, without penalty, upon 60 days written notice to the respondent. Any contract cancellation notice shall not relieve the respondent of the obligation to deliver and/or perform on all outstanding orders issued prior to the effective date of cancellation. In the event of termination by mutual agreement, the respondent shall be compensated for all hours worked at the specified contractual rate.

If, through any cause other than acts of God, floods, fires, storms, strikes, lockouts, riot, insurrection, acts of the public enemy, war, or other like restrictions beyond the control of the parties rendering performance under the contract impossible, the respondent fails to fulfill in a timely and proper manner obligations under the contract, PMRLS shall have the right to terminate the contract on written notice to the respondent, specifying the effective date of termination.

PMRLS reserves the right to terminate service with the vendor for non-performance. Non-performance includes, but is not limited to, failure to supply good quality service, insufficient billing and customer services, and failure to maintain status as an authorized representative of services.

The respondent shall not be relieved of liability to Pine Mountain Regional Library System for damages sustained by virtue of any breach of the contract by the respondent. PMRLS may withhold or require to be withheld any payment to the respondent for the purpose of setoff until such time as the exact amount of damages is agreed upon or is otherwise determined.

Contents of Proposal

There should be four (4) copies of the response for the proposal, with one (1) original and three (3) copies.

The signed proposal shall be returned with all copies in a separate envelope or packaged, sealed and identified with the cover sheet information provided on page 11 of this document. In a separate sealed envelope labeled “For Cost Purpose Only” information detailed in Attachment B: Identification of Cost Phase of Proposal. See Attachment A: Identification of Proposal.

No electronic mail, telephone, or facsimile of proposals will be accepted.

Company Information:

  • Name of Respondent and Company Address
  • E-Rate Service Provider Identification Number (SPIN)
  • Name and signature of person authorizing proposal with date
  • A description of the materials to be provided based on the Library’s current services
  • Three (3) references of comparable size and scope with summary of products and support services provided
  • Respondent’s qualifications, professional reputation, financial stability, and industry experience
  • Proposed Service Level Agreement or Extended Product Warranty to maintain the network and ensure uptime
  • Timeline of services to be performed
  • If proposal differs in any way from the PMRLS proposal specifications, the respondent must list the differences on the response explaining exactly where and how the proposal deviates from specifications. If no exceptions are listed, it will be presumed the respondents’ response meets the specifications and if awarded, performance on this basis will be required.
  • In a separate, sealed envelope labeled “For Cost Purpose Only” information detailed in Attachment B: Identification of Cost Phase of Proposal.

Proposal Evaluation

In keeping with the guidelines of Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC), this Request for Proposal will be awarded to the most cost-efficient respondent. Price will be the primary factor, but not necessarily the sole factor, in evaluating the responses. See Attachment C: Evaluation Criteria.

Proposals must be received or postmarked by February 2, 2024, at 5 p.m.

Questions submitted up to January 19, 2024, will be answered on our webpage for the RFP no later than January 26, 2024. They can be viewed at pinemtnlibrary.org/RFPFY24.

No verbal instructions or information to respondents will be binding. The specifications will be considered clear and complete, unless written attention to any apparent discrepancies or incompleteness thereof, before the opening of proposals.

Any questions about this request should be sent in writing (fax or email is acceptable) to:

Jennifer Domenech, Assistant Director
Pine Mountain Regional Library System
218 W Perry St.
Manchester, GA 31816
Fax: (706) 846-8455
Email: jdomenech@pinemtnlibrary.org

Respondents are responsible for information, changes, additions, etc., posted in addendums.

General Requirements

  • Pine Mountain Regional Library System may make such investigations as they deem necessary to determine the ability of respondent to perform the work. PMRLS reserves the right to reject any proposal if investigation of such respondent fails to satisfy the Library that such respondent is properly qualified to carry out the obligations of the contract to and complete the work contemplated therein.
  • All respondents must be prepared to present suitable evidence of their financial stability.
  • PMRLS has the right to reject any and all proposals from any respondent that is in or contemplates bankruptcy of any chapter or nature. Said respondent must notify PMRLS in writing of any existing condition or knowledge of same.
  • The submission of a proposal will be considered as conclusive evidence of complete examination by a respondent of all instructions, specifications, and addenda.
  • PMRLS reserves the right to declare as non-responsive and reject any proposal in which material information requested is not furnished or where indirect or incomplete answers or information is provided.
  • PMRLS reserves the right to terminate services if E-Rate or PMRLS funding is not approved or is reduced during specified period.
  • Proposals or any modifications or corrections to proposals received after the closing submission deadline will not be considered.
  • No electronic mail, telephone, or facsimile of proposals will be accepted.
  • Proposals must be complete, in accordance with the requirements for format and content of proposals herein, and in compliance with the terms, conditions, provisions, and specifications of the Request for Proposals.
  • The information requested, format, and the manner of submission are essential for the prompt evaluation of all proposals.
  • Late proposals will not be opened unless the proposals received on time are considered inadequate.
  • These specifications are intended to cover the furnishing of all materials and the performance of all work that may be required or necessary for the complete performance of the contract, and the bidder will be required to do all the things that may be necessary to fully complete the work within the purview of these specifications.
  • Equipment and/or material to be furnished by the vendor shall meet with the approval of the Director, Assistant Director, or designated representative.
  • All equipment and/or material shall conform to the requirements of these specifications, and any equipment and/or material condemned by the Director, Assistant Director, or designated representative as not meeting these specifications shall at once be removed and replaced with acceptable equipment.
  • The respondent shall ensure their employees comply with Library regulations while at work sites. Employees of successful respondent shall refrain from eating, drinking or smoking, except in designated areas, at all times when on PMRLS property.
  • Any changes, additions or modifications to this Request for Proposals will be posted to the USAC website. It is the respondent’s responsibility to check for modifications.

Applicable Law

This solicitation and any resulting contract shall be governed in all respects by the laws of the State of Georgia. Respondents shall obey all Federal, State, County and City laws or ordinances in any way pertaining to the work, and shall obtain all permits that may be necessary for its performance if required. (a) That the hiring of employees for the performance of such contract, no bidder, sub-contractor, nor any person acting on behalf of such bidder or sub-contractor shall by reason of race, creed or color discriminate against any citizen of the United States who is qualified and able to perform the work to which the employment relates; (b) Nor shall they in any manner discriminate against or intimidate any employees hired for the performance of the work on account of race, cred or color. House Bill 87, Section 3, E-Verify Form.

Ethics in Public Contracting

By submitting their proposals, all respondents certify that their proposals are made without collusion or fraud and that they have not offered or received any kickbacks or inducements from any other supplier, manufacturer or subcontractor in connection with their proposals, and that they have not conferred on any PMRLS employee having official responsibility for this procurement transaction any payment, loan, subscription, advance, deposit of money, services or anything of more than nominal value, present or promised, unless consideration of substantially equal or greater value was exchanged. Respondents specifically certify by submitting their proposal that they are not in violation of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, Sections 16-10-2 and 16-10-22, for acts of bribery and/or conspiracy in restraint of free and open competition in transactions with state or political subdivisions.

Debarment Status

By submitting their proposals, all respondents certify that they are not currently debarred from submitting proposals or bids on contracts by any agency of the State of Georgia and the Federal government, nor are they an agent of any person or entity that is currently debarred form submitting proposals or bids on contracts by any agency of the State of Georgia or the Federal government.


In case of failure to deliver goods or services in accordance with the contract terms and condition, Pine Mountain Regional Library System, after due notice, may procure them from other sources and hold the respondent responsible for any resulting additional purchase and administrative costs. This remedy shall be in addition to any other remedies that PMRLS may have.


All billing to the Library must itemize costs and be separated for each location. Ineligible costs must be separated from eligible costs.

Exemption from Georgia Sales Tax

Pine Mountain Regional Library System is exempt from Georgia State sales tax. Net prices as shown in the proposal shall exclude said State tax amounts. Respondents shall inform all prospective subcontractors and suppliers from whom they expect to obtain services or supplies of the tax-exempt status of the Library. Following a contract award, an exemption certificate will be furnished by The Library.


Scope of Work

This project will require the chosen vendor to provide switches to the Library in order to facilitate the use of a network that can meet its current speeds of 500mgps and 1Gbps, and that has the capabilities to have increased speeds as the Library continues to improve its internet access.

Switch Requirements

  • Each switch will have at least four (4) 10Gbps ports.
  • Layer 2 switching
  • 1x authentication
  • VLAN support
  • Cloud-based management console
  • All ports will support a minimum of 1Gbps
  • Switches must conform to POE+ specifications (IEEE 802.3at POE+)
  • Licenses must include software feature updates, bug fixes, patches, and access to technical support
  • Mobile/App management preferred
  • Reporting utility
  • Meraki or equivalent preferred

Acceptance Milestones

PMRLS Assistant Director will sign off on documentation showing successful testing at each site when installation is completed, and equipment is confirmed to be in working order.

Network Services

  • Respondents will provide all necessary equipment and hardware needed for installations
  • Respondents will set up switches and will work with the ISP (ENA) to ensure the network is properly configured

Location Requirements

  • Manchester Public Library
    • 218 W Perry St., Manchester, GA 31816
    • Total ports: 96
  • Hightower Memorial Library
    • 800 W Gordon St., Thomaston, GA 30286
    • Total ports: 48
  • Greenville Public Library
    • 2323 Gilbert St., Greenville, GA 30222
    • Total ports: 48
  • Talbot County Public Library
    • 75 N Jefferson St., Talbotton, GA 31827
    • Total ports: 48
  • Butler Public Library
    • 56 W Main St., Butler, GA 31006
    • Total ports: 48
  • Yatesville Public Library
    • 75 Childs Ave., Yatesville, GA 31097
    • Total ports: 24
  • Reynolds Community Library
    • 22 N Winston St., Reynolds, GA 31076
    • Total ports: 24


Attachment A: Identification of Proposal

The signed proposal shall be returned in a separate envelope or package, sealed and identified as follows:

PMRLS Network Switch Proposal                                           Due: February 2, 2024

Addressed to:

Pine Mountain Regional Library System
Attn: Jennifer Domenech
218 W Perry St.
Manchester, GA 31816

Company Name
Company Address
Name of contact person, email and phone number

Contained in the envelope will be:

  • A completed, signed request for Proposal
    • One (1) original and three (3) copies
    • All information necessary for the technical proposal
    • In a separate, sealed envelope, the cost information. Cost of E-rate ineligible items must be separated from the E-rate eligible items. See Attachment B: Identification of Cost Phase proposal

Proposals may be hand-delivered or mailed to the designated location identified above. No other correspondence or other proposals should be placed in the envelope.

Attachment B: Identification of Cost Phase Proposal

  • A detailed list of parts, service costs, and license fees associated with network switches as necessary, separated by each location. Each line cost listed shall include:
    • One-time costs, including any installation, activation, initial configuration, programming or service charges
    • Monthly or yearly costs, if applicable, including all mandatory fees and charges
      • For license fees, include cost of one (1), three (3) and five (5) year licenses.
    • Optional installation charges, if the respondent offers such services
  • Cost of E-Rate ineligible items must be clearly labeled and separated from E-Rate eligible items
  • Invoicing method preference is SPI

Attachment C: Evaluation Criteria

Evaluation Criteria


Cost of Eligible Services


Ability to meet technical requirements


Past performance (experience)




Questions from Respondents

All questions and answers received during the RFP period will appear here.

Q: What is the preferred Meraki Switch model PMRLS is evaluating?
A: We don't have a preferred Meraki model. Before we decided to go the e-rate route, we had previously been looking at the MS225. At the Manchester location, we would probably prefer stackable switches.

Q: In the Location Requirements section, is the number of total ports, the number of ports being used or the desired number of ports to be quoted? And where there are 24 ports needed, are you looking for a 24-port switch or should all switches be 48 port switches?
A: The total number of ports that we want to be quoted. We aren't using that many at those locations at this time, but we want to have the option to add devices if necessary. Yatesville and Reynolds would ideally have 24-port switches. They don't have a need for 48 ports, and we don't foresee them needing it any time in the future.



Date Description
December 20, 2023 8:00 AM
Managed Switches
E-Rate Category 2