Legislation would reduce paperwork, increase transparency
Companies who want to work with King County will face fewer forms and a more open process with today’s adoption by the Metropolitan King County Council of legislation streamlining the County’s procurement and contracting process.
“This is a direct response to concerns we heard from our business partners and potential vendors that King County’s contracting requirements can be quite burdensome, especially for smaller businesses,” said Councilmember Kathy Lambert, Chair of the Government Accountability and Oversight Committee. “Removing some duplicative requirements from the contracting process will open up our procurement to additional vendors and promote more competitive pricing as well as economic development opportunities.”
The ordinances are the result of legislation adopted by the Council in 2009 calling on the County Executive to review the County’s codes and practices for the procurement of goods and services. The Council required the Executive to identify opportunities to make the County’s procurement process more transparent. The legislation makes specific changes:
• It will allow companies to file procurement contracts online, a new step that will speed up the process for those looking to work with the County while eliminating paper forms;
• It would reduce the number of forms contractors must fill out. Those forms include 15 pages of paper forms that include personnel inventory reports, union statement of compliance and ADA 504 assurance of compliance and corrective action plan;
• It would provide a specific statement of intent to make the procurement process more transparent while reducing paper reporting requirements. The statement of intent states that the procurement process will be open, fair and competitive;
• It would streamline contracts, in part by adding new provisions and certifications as part of the included standard terms and conditions for doing business with the County;
• It would provide exemptions for certain human services contracts that do not require a public bidding process—reducing the complexity of applying equal benefit standards to approximately 2,000 different human service contracts with specialized grant funding.
The goal is to make the procurement process easier, more streamlined and available to more bidders.
The adopted legislation advances the Council’s priorities of Trust in Government, Financial Stewardship and Safe, Healthy and Vibrant Communities.