QLDC releases $360,000 procurement details after pressure from consultants

by Peter Newport - Feb 05, 2021

In an unusual development, QLDC has today been pressured into revealing contract details by a team of consultants who specialise in procurement.

Crux reported this week that in 2018/2019 QLDC paid $361,197 to an Australian procurement consultancy called ArcBlue. Crux asked for details of this expenditure on January 25th - but after a series of emails, QLDC told Crux that the information would be treated as an official information request (LGOIMA) and we would have to wait at least 20 days for details. No reason was given for the delay or refusal to release information - apart from "staff availability".

ArcBlue's David Nellist - he could see no reason why QLDC would withhold details of their procurement contract

However yesterday, when Crux contacted one of the ArcBlue consultants who actually did the work, David Nellist, he told us that his parent company wanted the details to be released by QLDC without delay.

And today that information (published in full below) was received by Crux from QLDC with the following note:

"Please note that we will pro-actively release this response in accordance with our Proactive Release policy. This is to ensure we maintain a high level of transparency when releasing official information to you."

Source:  Maddy Patterson QLDC Senior Governance and Official Information Advisor

No link between today's release and ArcBlue's statement to Crux yesterday, calling on QLDC to be more transparent, is noted in the communication we received.

QLDC response to Crux questions re: ArcBlue.

1. What was the work for?

The Scope of services included:

  • Provide professional advice on methods and means of procurement to deliver QLDC’s circa $190m Long Term Plan (LTP) 3 Waters Programme
  • Facilitate market sounding and assessment of market capacity
  • Determine peak Programme cash flows and other external impacts that would influence development of the procurement framework
  • Provide advisory and support services during the procurement phase
  • Facilitate and align internal resources for project procurement
  • Develop QLDC’s 3 Waters procurement strategy
  • Oversight and support of the procurement methodology defined by the 3 Waters procurement strategy.

2. What was delivered?

Deliverables included:

  • Practical advice to support delivery of the LTP 3 Waters Programme
  • Contractor interview-based research (soft market sounding)
  • Early phase assessment options and base-lining report
  • Procurement strategy
  • Procurement Plan for 3 Waters Design Panel
  • Procurement Plan for 3 Waters Contract Works Panel
  • Request for proposal (RFP) development, evaluation model support and facilitation
  • 3 Waters Design Panel in place and operating
  • 3 Waters Contract Works Panel in place and operating
  • Support to manage and maintain the 3 Waters panels
  • Updated templates.

3. What was the procurement process?

  • 19 April 2018 - Open Market Registration of Interest, GETS reference: 19648842
  • 21-22 May 2018 - Closed RFP/Q to shortlisted bidders.

4. Who signed it off?

QLDC’s General Manager of Property & Infrastructure, Peter Hansby

Read our coverage from earlier this week on this story.

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