Yesterday’s (Monday, October 2, 2017) county commissioners court agenda has two more examples of why our local governments often end up paying too much for what they buy.
In both agenda items the county had gone out for bids for electronic office equipment.
In a bid for printers nine bids were tabulated according to the backup material
The bid for document scanners had 13 bids.
After receiving and evaluating the bids the county information technology department is asking the court to cancel the bids.
From the backup material:
Through several hardware refresh cycles over the past four years, ITD has experienced success by standardizing on a single (scanner/printer). This solution has shown to be highly reliable and sustainable, requiring lower maintenance costs, and user training. Most importantly, standardization allows for universal compatibility with our operating systems and applications throughout County offices and departments. At this time, ITD will work to verify with technical staff that this model will fit the demonstrated need for our users and proceed with other procurement options when ready.
In other words
They knew before they went out for bids that they wanted to standardize. They wasted the time and resources of 22 bidders. They will now pick their supplier and buy through a buy board.
The result will be fewer and less competitive offers next time because the bidders won’t go through the trouble of bidding when they know the county just wants to do a price check.
We deserve better