The Business Council of New York State, Inc., supports S.6117 (Ranzenhofer) / A.8692 (Heastie), a chapter amendment to legislation passed by both houses in 2011 to permit best value contracting by municipalities for both goods and services, except for Article 8 public work projects.
This chapter amendment makes significant improvements to the 2011 legislation by allowing best value contracting to be optional, not mandatory; and by requiring local governments or contracting entities to adopt a local law or resolution specifically authorizing this contracting approach.
The Business Council believes best value contracting can be a useful tool for procuring; it is, however, a more complicated tool to apply than traditional lowest bidder contracting, and additional steps are necessary to ensure that an open and fair competition for the contract has been conducted. Best value contracting, from writing the bid document to scoring and awarding the bid to a fully executed contract is more complicated and appropriate procedures need to be in place to ensure transparency and documentation of the process.
This chapter amendment does not require best value contracting, but rather allows municipalities to use the tool after a public process to adopt a local law or resolution authorizing use of best value. The bill preserves the integrity of best value bidding process to protect the investment by taxpayers, and ensures transparency for those businesses which make an investment of time and money in responding to public procurements.
Best value contracting needs to be conducted on a uniform, fair and open competitive process. This chapter amendment makes significant improvements to the process set forth in S.4753-A/A.7357-A of 2011 and addresses Business Council concerns.
For these reasons, The Business Council supports this bill.