Agenda Item   



                                                                                                                        ASR Control  23-001027




legal entity taking action:

Board of Supervisors

board of supervisors district(s):

All Districts

SUBMITTING Agency/Department:

Sheriff-Coroner   (Approved)

Department contact person(s):

Andrew Stephens  (714) 647-1833 



Stephanie Callian  (714) 834-6380



Subject:  Approve Gerstel Inc. Contract


      ceo CONCUR

County Counsel Review

Clerk of the Board


Approved Agreement to Form




3 Votes Board Majority




    Budgeted: Yes

Current Year Cost:   $210,952

Annual Cost: N/A




    Staffing Impact:


# of Positions:            

Sole Source:   Yes

    Current Fiscal Year Revenue: N/A

   Funding Source:     State: 100% CHP Cannabis Tax Fund Grant Program

County Audit in last 3 years: No

   Levine Act Review Completed: Yes


    Prior Board Action:         N/A




Authorize the County Procurement Officer or Deputized designee to execute the sole source contract with Gerstel, Inc. for the purchase of three Gerstel Headspace Autosamplers, Service and Preventative Maintenance, effective upon Board approval and execution of all necessary signatures for a three-year term in an amount not to exceed $210,953, renewable for two additional one-year terms.







Approval of the sole source Gerstel, Inc. contract will allow the Sheriff-Coroner Department to continue to analyze alcohol, and other volatiles in driving under the influence cases, sexual assault cases and other postmortem cases. 






The Orange County Crime Lab (OCCL) currently has four gas chromatography (GC) instruments in the forensic alcohol section. Each GC is equipped with a Gerstel Headspace Autosampler, one of which is new. The other three are older, outdated models and the contract history is detailed in the table below.



Contract Execution Date
















One-time purchase contract with Gerstel, Inc., approved administratively pursuant to the County’s 2007 Contract Policy Manual, Section 3.1.





One-time purchase contract with Gerstel, Inc., approved administratively pursuant to the County’s 2007 Contract Policy Manual, Section 3.1.





One-time purchase contract with Gerstel, Inc., approved administratively pursuant to the County’s 2012 Contract Policy Manual, Section 3.1.




All GC's contain a Gerstel Cryogenic Trapping System (CTS) 2 as part of their inner workings. The only headspace autosampler that will integrate with the Gerstel CTS is this MultiPurpose Sampler (MPS) Robotic Headspace Autosampler. Due to the proprietary nature of the instruments, Gerstel is the only provider of these autosamplers as well as the only contractor authorized to service them. In addition, the software that runs the autosampler robot (Maestro) integrates with the Agilent GC Chemstation and MassHunter software. The Maestro software is proprietary and is available exclusively from Gerstel. Because the three units will replace a similar system which has reached its expected life cycle, the training and down time will be minimized. Purchasing an autosampler system and software from a different company would require costly changes to the GC's including replacement of all CTS. The Forensic Alcohol section would need to start from scratch, developing and validating new methods, potentially taking an additional number of years before the new instrumentation could be placed in service. In addition, the training and learning curve would add months before the instrument is ready for use. Purchasing an instrument from the same company would allow for a seamless transfer of our methodology and workflow. Additionally, if hardware and software instrumentation were to be purchased from another source, the OCCL's IT department would be required to reprogram the Laboratory Information Management System application to allow for the changes.


Sheriff has verified that there are no concerns that must be addressed with respect to contractors' ownership/name, litigation status of conflicts with County interests. The Orange County Preference Policy is not applicable to this sole source contract. This contract does not include subcontractors or pass through to other providers, Attachment B - Contract Summary Form.


Sheriff now requests Board approval of the Gerstel sole source contract for the purchase, service, and preventative maintenance of three Gerstel Headspace Autosampler Instruments as noted in the Recommended Action. This Contract is submitted for Board approval less than 30 days prior to its effective date since the deadline to encumber grant funds is June 30, 2024.  






Appropriations for this contract are included in the Sheriff-Coroner’s Budget control 060 for FY 2023-24 Budget. Equipment was also approved as part of the current budget using sequence number FY 24-126. This contract contains language allowing the Sheriff-Coroner Department to terminate the contract or reduce the level of services without penalty with cause or without cause in the event that funding is reduced and/or not available to continue funding the contract.











Attachment A - Contract MA-060-24010232
Attachment B - Contract Summary Form