Best Practices while Managing a Bond Program 

March 3, 2022

What is a Bond Program Manager?

A Bond Program Manager oversees bond-funded construction projects, construction activities, and related personnel. Bond Program Managers must protect the public and the stakeholders of the business services division by knowing best practices to avoid financial missteps that could expose the district to an audit.  

The first step is having a full comprehension of the bond program details.

Ensure expenditures are tied back to the bond language. Identify what costs are acceptable per project within the bond language.

Next, determine whether the district requires traditional contract code bidding or if the district is CUPCCAA (California Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act) admitted.

The distinction outlines the method for how to follow bidding requirements and procedures, protecting the program and all related projects. The method provided is about understanding bid limits and avoiding bid splitting.

CUPCCA or the California Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act establishes higher threshold amounts for force-account and projects required to be formally bid, allowing alternative bidding procedures when an agency performs public project work by contract.

For example, if CUPCCAA, you may break up bids based on trades. For traditional contract code bidding, you must bid per contractor for the entire project.

Understand the bid limits for public projects that fall under traditional contract code billing.

For example, you can contract with individual trades for smaller projects. However, if there is a potential for the perception of bid splitting, you’re better off treating them all as formal bids to protect the process and the project.

If you must to split the trades for a project, consider altering and/or spacing out the phases to remove any appearance of bid splitting.

Maintain current CBOC / district reports that give the district and the oversight committee a financial snapshot.

State auditing will take place and will require both the financial snapshot already provided to the oversight committee, as well as plenty of additional documentation in order to be closed out. Payment bonds will undergo an annual audit per district wherein they randomly select contracts to review and invoices to compare. Performance bonds will audit the process of bidding, how the money is being spent, and determine if both are adhering to the law.

Use a consistent document control process that is infallible regardless of staff changes.

Use one system for everything. This is crucial. Store all documentation (budget transfers, contracts, invoices, change orders, notices of completion) as hard copies as well as digitally.

Select an accounting system to track costs and reflect an accurate picture of the bond program and budget, as well as the status of all of the projects.

Use an application that isn’t just a financial tool (not Excel!).

ForSitePro is fund-management software that structures spending by providing:

  • Traceable and Transparent Budget Views and Activity
  • Links to Backup Documentation
  • Allocations Broken Down by Site, Project, and Sub-Project
  • Delineations of Fund Sources
  • Color of Money Identifications
  • Guardrails to Maintain Compliance
  • Real-Time Analytics  

Maximize the value of your team’s time and limit the risk to the district that hired you.

Contact to speak to a member of our team or click here to learn more about ForSitePro.  

For more information on topics touched upon in this article, please visit the below links:

CDE Bid Thresholds


Traditional Contract Code Bidding

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