Home

Legislative Memo

T 518.465.7511
www.bcnys.org

BILL:

S.3766-A (Little) / A.5119-A (Russell)

  Support

SUBJECT:

To Allow Local Governments and School Districts the Ability to Make Purchases Through Cooperative Contracts or Purchase Agreements that were Competitively Bid using Best Value

 

S.3766-A (Little) / A.5119-A (Russell)

DATE:

June 3, 2013

 

This bill would amend Chapter 308 of the laws of 2012 which gave political subdivisions more options in making purchases of apparatus, materials, equipment, supplies and related services. This amendment is needed to further expand their opportunity to reduce administrative costs and get better prices through the use of cooperative purchase agreements that were let by best value. The Business Council of New York State, Inc. supports this legislation but respectfully requests a modification to the language that would allow political subdivisions to take advantage of these saving opportunities almost immediately.

The Business Council supports reducing the overall cost of commodities and services while also reducing the administrative burden of carrying out an individual procurement by allowing political subdivisions to use another governmental entity's contract, also known as piggybacking. The cost of administering a competitive procurement is onerous and can be duplicative when multiple political subdivisions are making like-kind purchases.  Piggybacking is one way to help save local governments and school districts money. Chapter 308 of the laws of 2012 allows political subdivisions to piggyback off of any other governmental entity's contract as long as it was let in a manner consistent with New York State law and the contract's terms allow for piggybacking; this chapter amendment clarifies that piggybacking may occur from contracts let by best value rather than only by lowest price.

While The Business Council supports this bill we recommend removing a requirement that a political subdivision pass a separate local law allowing them to piggyback off of contracts let by best value instead of immediately being able to take advantage of this cost saving tool. Political subdivisions have already been given the authority to use best value for contracts they administer for themselves after passing a local law to that effect. Having to pass yet another local law specifically for piggybacking seems to be an unnecessary redundancy.

For these reasons The Business Council supports this bill with the recommendation previously mentioned.