Wisconsin Court of Appeals
An unsuccessful bidder for a municipal contract is not required to seek injunctive relief before suing to recover the costs for preparing the bid.
“Accepting the rule proposed by the Town would foreclose judicial review in a case, like this one, where the municipality violates the competitive bidding statute but quickly signs a contract and directs the successful bidder to begin performance. Generally, injunctive relief becomes unavailable when a public contract is actually awarded to a bidder. PRN Assocs., 317 Wis. 2d 656, ¶39. In recognition of the potential harshness caused by this rule, ‘an injunction may still be permissible before performance of the contract begins.’ D.M.K., 290 Wis. 2d 474, ¶27 n.6. As the circuit court noted, this case presents a novel situation in which a disappointed bidder moved quickly to preserve its remedies but nonetheless failed to obtain an injunction before performance began.
“The public interest is not served by allowing municipalities to circumvent the competitive bidding statute by rapidly signing a contract and directing the start of performance.”
Recommended for publication in the official reports.
2009AP3036 North Twin Builders, LLC, v. Town of Phelps
Dist. III, Vilas County, Neilsen, J., Brunner, J.
Attorneys: For Appellant: Zalewski, Richard W., Wausau; Roman, Michael J., Wausau; For Respondent: Kost, Keith K., Rhinelander; Strutz, Sven W., Rhinelander