Ohio State Parks Concessions are diverse in size and scope. Because of the diversity, Ohio has a variety of different Contracts/Leases/Agreements that are managed.
Approximately 30 Ohio state parks have facilities that are managed under a concession contract. Lodges and golf courses are the more significant concession contracts but there are others as well including marinas, gift shops, restaurants, gasoline sales, bike rental, etc.
The Park Manager works with the managers of each concession facility, but the park manager does not supervise or have any direct authorization over the operations of the concessions. Each concession has an on-site manager that has the specific skill set to manage the facility.
Formulating and Approval for a Bid Contract/Lease:
A Contract/Lease must be formulated and forwarded for approval. The Concessions Section Manager is responsible for composing the Contract/Lease. The following authorities must approve the Contract/Lease:
• Division Fiscal Officer
• Division Chief
• Department Minority Business Enterprises
• Department Legal
• Department Deputy Director
Once approval is obtained, the bid process begins.
It is mandatory that facilities bid out are advertised for a minimum of 4 weeks. At the end of this 4 week period, there is a bid opening (usually a week after the final bid advertisement
A database of potential bidders is kept centrally. These potential bidders receive bid packages for facilities they are interested in. Bid packages are sent out while the bid is being advertised. Bid packages include a cover letter from the Chief of Parks, a Sample Lease, Historical Data, Instructions to Bidders, Bid Proposal Form, Experience Questionnaire/Plan of Operation, Pro Forma, Non-Collusion Affidavit, Facility Inventory, Map of the Facility, and a Bid Return Envelope.
Another database of potential bidders that wish to receive legal notices is kept centrally. Notices are sent to entries in this database each time a bid is being advertised.
A bid package is sent to any person who requests a package.
Bidders submit a proposal form with percentages they are willing to return to the state based on gross receipts. The bidders must also submit a non-collusion affidavit, a bid bond, an experience questionnaire, a Pro Forma and individual or corporate financial information.
If no bids are received for a facility, 2 options are available.
1. Self-operate the facility
2. Recruit a potential concessionaire. If a concessionaire is found, the length of the contract or lease may not exceed 2 years. After 2 years, the facility must be re-bid.
The Chief, Assistant Chief, Business Group Manager, Concessions Section Manager, and Park Manager where the concession facility resides may take part in a bid review. The bid review consists of an evaluation of how each bidder meets specifications in the Instructions to Bidders form. Points are outlined in this form and are awarded to the most qualified bids.
When the review is complete, the points are totaled. While it is not always the case, the highest point total usually wins the bid. On occasion, other factors are considered with the point totals that can change the bid award.
Once the bid review process is complete, the bid is awarded after approval by the ODNR Director. An award letter and two copies of the lease are sent to the concessionaire for signature. The concessionaire then signs the lease and sends both the lease and performance bond to the Parks Concessions Section Manager. The performance bond may also be in the form of a Letter of Credit, or a CD. Once these items are received from the concessionaire, their bid bond is vouchered back to them.
Bidders that were not awarded the bid are sent a regret letter and also have their bid bond vouchered back to them.
Composition and Approval of bid: Approximately 2-3 weeks
Advertising of bid: Approximately 4-5 weeks
Bid Review: Approximately 2-3 weeks
Bid Award and Circulation of bid: Approximately 2-3 weeks
Length of Contracts/Leases:
Lodge Leases: Lodge contracts have 10 year terms. Due to financial feasibility, not all lodges are bid individually. Ohio currently has 3 lodges on one contract. The other 7 lodges are bid individually.
Standard Leases: Most leases are bid with a term of 4 years with an additional 4 year renewal at the discretion of our Director. These terms are not mandatory, but do not vary often.
848 Lease: An 848 lease extends for a period of up to 25 years. Ohio currently has two 848 leases, both at marina facilities on Lake Erie. These leases are advantageous to both the state and concessionaire in certain areas. The extended term allows for the concessionaire to make capital improvements and have the time to pay off debt. The state benefits from the improvements and has an operator for several years.
The only fee built into Standard Leases is the percentage of gross receipts (commission paid to the state) that the concessionaire bids. These percentages vary depending on the facility.
In a lodge lease, and select marina facilities, there is a Maintenance, Repair, and Replacement Fund (MR&R) that most often 15% (contracts vary on percent) of gross receipts are paid in addition to the percentages from the bid proposal submitted by the concessionaire. The MR&R fund is used to maintain the properties. The concessionaire may submit requests to use these funds. Once pre-approval is given, the money is released to the concessionaire.
**Coming soon: MR&R Manual
**Coming soon: Concessions Manual