The 40-year old Paisley-born tactician held talks with the Robins on Monday about replacing Keith Millen at Ashton Gate and it is believed that St Johnstone chairman Geoff Brown has agreed a compensation package for McInnes to depart.
Although the deal looks likely to go ahead, Brown confirmed he had not yet heard word from Bristol who had also interviewed former Barnsley boss Mark Robins.
"At Bristol there seems to be a board of executive directors and an owner - and the owner overrides the executive directors," said Brown.
"There's nothing I can do until someone tells me Derek is or isn't being appointed.
"But I don't see this season as being a problem. To a certain extent this is a repeat of when Paul Sturrock left us.
"If Derek does move on, we would be looking for someone who would keep the confidence of the players going."
He added: "He's been excellent for me. You knew right away he and Tony Docherty would be a great management team.
"But the Championship is a massive league and if he gets the opportunity it would be hard for him to turn that down. I'd be surprised if he did.
"Hopefully we can keep him. But if he goes we'll wish him all the best."