Under the Iran Divestment Act, T.C.A. §§ 12-12-101--12-12-113, political subdivisions in Tennessee are prohibited from entering into any procurement or contract over $1,000 with a person who engages in investment activities in Iran. The state's chief procurement officer is required under T.C.A. § 12-12-106 to create a list of persons who engage in investment activities in Iran. Any person who is on the list is ineligible to contract with any political subdivision of this state, and any such contract is declared void ab initio under § 12-12-110. The list is published on the Department of General Services' Public Information Library page.
On or after July 1, 2016, every bid or proposal submitted to a political subdivision where competitive bidding is required must contain the following statement, submitted by the bidder under penalties of perjury: "By submission of this bid, each bidder and each person signing on behalf of any bidder certifies, and in the case of a joint bid each party thereto certifies as to its own organization, under penalty of perjury, that to the best of its knowledge and belief that each bidder is not on the list created pursuant to § 12-12-106.”
Under T.C.A. § 12-12-111, a bid shall not be considered nor any award made where the required statement has not been submitted. If the bidder cannot make the certification, the bidder must so state and must furnish with the bid a signed statement setting forth in detail the reasons. A political subdivision may award a bid to a bidder who cannot make the certification, on a case-by-case basis, if:
(1) The investment activities in Iran were made before July 1, 2016, the investment activities in Iran have not been expanded or renewed on or after July 1, 2016, and the person has adopted, publicized, and is implementing a formal plan to cease the investment activities in Iran and to refrain from engaging in any new investments in Iran; or
(2) The political subdivision makes a determination that the goods or services are necessary for the political subdivision to perform its functions and that, absent such an exemption, the political subdivision would be unable to obtain the goods or services for which the contract is offered. Such determination shall be made in writing and shall be a public document.