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September 2022



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CLOSED-South Fork Tolt Relicensing Project Strategic Consultant; RFP #SCL-19439

Original Date Posted: September 30, 2022 7:30 am

Due Date:

November 15, 2022, by 3:00 pm



Request for Proposal
South Fork Tolt Relicensing Project Strategic Consultant

The South Fork Tolt River Hydroelectric Project (herein referred to as the “Project”, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [FERC] Project #2959) is City Light’s newest hydro facility. It was completed in 1996 to leverage the South Fork Tolt Reservoir and South Fork Tolt Dam owned and operated by Seattle Public Utilities (SPU), which provides 30-40% of the drinking water supply for 1.5 million people in the greater Seattle area. Through this process, the South Fork Tolt Dam was brought under FERC jurisdiction. SPU is a public utility of the City of Seattle that consolidated the City’s Water Department with sewer, drainage, and garbage utility services in 1997. The City of Seattle’s then Water Department built the South Fork Tolt Dam in 1963 and began diverting municipal-supply water from the South Fork Tolt River in 1964.

The City was initially issued a FERC license for the Project in 1984. However, federal and state agencies and the Tulalip Tribes filed motions with the FERC to intervene in the licensing procedure, focusing primarily on the need to provide adequate long-term provisions for instream flows, habitat restoration, and monitoring. In 1988, City Light filed a Settlement Agreement (“Agreement”), which included fish and wildlife protection measures and mitigation jointly signed by the City, state and federal fish and wildlife agencies, and Tulalip Tribes. The Agreement was accepted by the FERC and incorporated into the license and the stay was lifted in 1989. The current, 40-year license will expire in July 2029.

City Light and SPU are together soliciting proposals and qualifications from consultants to work as an extension of City Light/SPU staff to accomplish all phases of the relicensing effort as summarized below. Generally, the services required will address the following objectives: (a) assist in shaping and maintaining a strategic approach to successfully manage the relicensing process (b) lead preparation of documents and filings required by the FERC licensing process; (c) provide multidisciplinary consulting services for planning, execution, and reporting of resource studies required during the relicensing process and (d) prepare for, participate in, and potentially facilitate and document (as needed and in coordination with a separate Facilitation Consultant) Licensing Participant (LP) and other related relicensing meetings, including any settlement negotiations.

Under this RFP, we are seeking Consultant services for Phases 1 and 2 as described in the Statement of Work (SOW) in Section 6 below. Future phases of the SOW shall be negotiated between the City Light/SPU and the Consultant and released via an executed amendment. City Light with SPU’s concurrence may at its discretion, and subject to continuing appropriation authority by the Seattle City Council, amend the contract at any time for scope, time and funding, or may terminate subject to the contract provisions. The contract will be maintained by City Light, but staff and project managers from both City Light and SPU will partner in all phases of the SOW.

This contract is a multi-year contract with a phased approach to work through 2029. The estimated spend is $2,500,000 for Phase 1 & 2 and will be shared between City Light and SPU.

Future phases, Phases 3 through 6 of the Scope of Work shall be negotiated between City Light/SPU and the Consultant and released via an executed amendment. It is preferred that the Consultant have a regional presence and regional experience, however, it is not mandatory.

OBTAINING THE RFQ DOCUMENTS: Documents will be available online September 30, 2022, at Consultants must complete a free registration prior to viewing, printing, and saving to their own equipment at no cost or ordering full or partial document sets and/or CDs through the Web site. For help using this site, please contact Bonfire at for technical questions. You can also visit their help forum at internet access to obtain these documents is available at Seattle Neighborhood Service Centers and most public libraries.

Seattle City Light is hosting a Pre-submittal Conference virtually via MS Teams on
October 12, 2022, from 2:00 pm -3:00 pm (PDT). Details are provided in the RFP.
The City’s proposed schedule is outlined in the RFP.

The contract(s) awarded as a result of this RFQ will be awarded in a manner that will comply with all applicable laws of the United States, State of Washington, the City Charter, and Ordinances of the City of Seattle.

“WOMEN AND MINORITY AFFIRMATIVE EFFORTS REQUIREMENTS: All proposals are required to meet the Affirmative Efforts requirements as specified in the RFQ. An Outreach Plan will be required for the top-rated consultant(s).”

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