Hogan Administration’s Commission to Modernize State Procurement Releases Final Report
Outlines 57 Recommendations To Improve State Procurement System
Simultaneously, the state unveiled a new website, procurement.maryland.gov, as a comprehensive communications portal providing online access to Maryland procurement information for all policymakers, vendors, and citizens.
“Procurement is a critical component of how state government does business. I thank the commission members for their important work to improve state procurement, and I look forward to reviewing their recommendations,” said Governor Hogan. “Reforming our procurement system to be more open and business-friendly is another way we are making sure Maryland is Open for Business.”
“Modernizing our procurement process is vital to running a transparent, accountable, and fiscally responsible state government,” said Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford, who chairs the commission. “Once implemented, these recommendations will benefit Maryland for years to come by increasing competition for contracts, lowering transaction costs, and improving the professional development of our state procurement workforce.”
Lt. Governor Rutherford created three distinct workgroups to lead the commission’s review process: The Workforce Workgroup, chaired by Budget Secretary David Brinkley, focused on improving consistency and predictability for the business community by better developing quality state procurement staff. The Efficiencies Workgroup, chaired by Department of Information and Technology Secretary David Garcia and Department of Transportation chief procurement officer Mike Zimmerman, focused on producing recommendations that increase efficiencies in the procurement process, reduce transaction costs, and make state procurement more attractive and accessible to businesses. The Initiatives Workgroup, chaired by Department of General Services Secretary Ellington Churchill and Special Secretary of the Governor’s Office of Minority Affairs Jimmy Rhee, developed recommendations to facilitate procurement through small business and affinity preference programs.
Click here to read the full report. Recommendations include:
- Creating a standardized RFP template for all service, information technology, architecture and engineering, and construction contracts;
- Modernizing the state’s electronic bidding system by deploying upgrades to the eMaryland Marketplace, which will lower transaction costs and increase competition;
- Expanding the Small Business Reserve program to apply to all state agencies and raise the goal of procurement dollars coming from small businesses to 15 percent, thereby vastly expanding small business contracting opportunities;
- Advising procurement officers on their discretion to modify certain terms and conditions on state contracts;
- Allowing all contractors to appeal to the Maryland State Board of Contract Appeals if a decision on a contract claim has not been made within 180 days.
The report also recommended several areas for further study, including centralizing non-transportation procurement and reviewing the procurement procedures of those state agencies that are exempt from the state’s procurement regulations.