Officials were also disappointed to receive only two bids.
The district had budgeted $25,000 for software that they hoped would provide general ledger functions, payroll, utility billing and golf shop purchase tracking.
One company Tyler Technologies of Lubbock, Texas, bid $204,683 for software and professional services, and $30,000 annual maintenance fee.
The other company, Harris Local Government of Niagara Falls, N.Y., bid $73,489 for software and professional services and $9,565 for annual maintenance.
Neither company provided golf purchase tracking but could customize it for an additional fee.
Commissioner Linda Graves, who sits on the Accounting Software Acquisition Committee, said nine bidders had responded to the Requests for Proposal the district had sent out and posted to its website.
Committee member Donna Putnam and Office Manager Marilyn Clave said they were disappointed that a company called Centerpoint had not responded with a bid, as they had spoken with city officials at Paris, Ark., who use it and said it works well.
District Manager Gerald Hartley said the district has to respond to the two companies who submitted bids within the deadline. If the district wants more bids, it can opt to reject both bids and start the whole process over. Or it can try to negotiate a contract that uses fewer of the modules provided and gives a better price.
The district currently outsources its payroll processing at a cost of $8,000 a year. Even with bringing that in-house and adding that money to the budget, the $33,000 will still fall far short of current bids.
"Let's go back to our spreadsheet requirements and our RFP and look at each proposal by line item and rank them by priority," Putnam suggested.
Staff will contact other bidders to find out why they did not submit a proposal, and Hartley suggested the two bidders be invited to come make a presentation.