After cancelling three bid requests because of questions about the irregularities, the director of the Iowa Department of Administrative Services conceded to lawmakers Wednesday the process “can stand some improvement.”I don't know. These seem like such basic matters that I suspect there would be quite a bit of more room for improvement.
Among the concerns prompting Carroll’s cancellation of the bid process were complaints from state legislators and law enforcement radio vendors that bid requests for communication radios for various state agencies have been intentionally uncompetitive with unusually exacting specifications.
Too often, he said, vendors approach employees in agencies in the process of buying goods or services in attempts to gain information that would improve their chances of winning bids. So he plans to enforce the prohibition against communication between vendors and any state employees other than the designated procurement officers.
The policy applies to communication from lobbyists, lawmakers and vendors to state employees, Carroll said. Even when the questions come from lawmakers, they can be traced back to vendors, he said.
At the same time, Carroll will institute a process to allow vendors to have anonymous communication with DAS internal auditors. That communication would be made public, but without the vendor’s identity attached.
Also, there will be a two-week protest period for vendors to raise questions about the vendor-neutrality of requests for proposals or the procurement process. That protest period will occur before the contract awarded, rather than after, Carroll said.
Chairwoman Sen. Janet Petersen, D-Des Moines, asked for more information about conflict of interest policies to prevent someone from leaving state employment to work for bidding on a state contract.
“I think Oversight would be interested in putting stronger fences around that,” she told Carroll.
Labels and Tags
Accountability (66) Adequate documentation (4) ADR in procurement (3) Allocation of risks (5) Best interest of government (11) Best practices (19) Best value (14) Bidder prejudice (9) Blanket purchase agreement (1) Bridge contract (2) Bundling (6) Cancellation and rejection (2) Centralized procurement structure (12) Changes during bid process (13) Clarifications vs Discussions (1) Competence (9) Competition vs Efficiency (28) Competitive position (2) Compliance (32) Conflict of interest (28) Contract administration (24) Contract disputes (1) Contract extension or modification (8) Contract terms (2) Contract types (6) Contract vs solicitation dispute (1) Contractor responsibility (18) Conviction (3) Cooperative purchasing (3) Cost and pricing (13) Debarment (4) Determinations (8) Determining responsibility (32) Disclosure requirements (7) Discussions during solicitation (9) Disposal of surplus property (3) Effective enforcement requirement (34) Effective procurement management (3) Effective specifications (35) Emergency procurement (14) eProcurement (5) Equitable tolling (2) Evaluation of submissions (20) Fair and equitable treatment (13) Fair and reasonable value (23) Fiscal effect of procurement (13) Good governance (8) Governmental functions (26) Guam (14) Guam procurement law (12) Improper influence (11) Incumbency (12) Integrity of system (29) Interested party (7) Jurisdiction (1) Justification (1) Life-cycle cost (1) Limits of government contracting (4) Lore vs Law (4) market research (6) Materiality (3) Methods of source selection (28) Mistakes (3) Models of Procurement (1) Needs assessment (10) No harm no foul? (8) Other procurement links (14) Outsourcing (31) Past performance (10) Planning policy (33) Politics of procurement (46) PPPs (6) Prequalification (1) Principle of competition (88) Principles of procurement (21) Private vs public contract (15) Procurement authority (5) Procurement controversies series (75) Procurement ethics (17) Procurement fraud (27) Procurement lifecycle (9) Procurement philosophy (15) Procurement procedures (29) Procurement reform (57) Procurement theory (11) Procurement workforce (2) Procurment philosophy (6) Professionalism (17) Protest - formality (1) Protest - timing (10) Protests - general (35) Purposes and policies of procurement (9) Recusal (1) Remedies (16) Requirement for new procurement (4) Resolution of protests (3) Responsiveness (11) Restrictive specifications (3) Review procedures (12) Scope of contract (16) Settlement (2) Social preference provisions (59) Sole source (46) Sovereign immunity (2) Staffing (7) Standard commercial products (1) Standards of review (2) Standing (5) Stays and injunctions (6) Structure of procurement (1) Substantiation (9) Surety (1) Suspension (6) The procurement record (1) The role of price (8) The subject matter of procurement (22) Trade agreements vs procurement (1) Training (32) Transparency (59) Uniformity (5) Unsolicited proposals (2)
Saturday, March 16, 2013
Can stand some improvement - Iowa, USA
State procurement chief concedes ‘lax’ enforcement of bid process rules