Local Procurement for Local Employment

Responding to: “Council defends its ‘out-of-town’ spend” (Gisborne Herald 23/07/10)

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Responding to what he says is half-hearted interest in the issue by Gisborne District Council, city ward candidate Manu Caddie says if elected he will support the introduction of greater weightings to local economic benefit in Council procurement policy.
Mr Caddie has been working with an economist in Wellington to develop a transparent mechanism for procurement processes that give consideration to local employment benefits in addition to quality of service and overall price.
“Just because you can measure locality in different ways doesn’t mean you should ignore it” said Mr Caddie who believes Council has a dual role to get best value for ratepayers and to promote local prosperity and resilience.
“The most sustainable way to build  local prosperity is to reduce unemployment and improve social stability. Council and the District Health Board can play a valuable role in developing and retaining local expertise to grow industries”.
Mr Caddie supports the establishment of a section on the Council and DHB websites for companies interested in doing business with the local authorities.
“There needs to be an easy to understand explanation of the organisation’s commitment to doing business locally, a guide for interested providers and an enquiry form to express interest in working together.”
In the United Kingdom the government has introduced a successful Small Business (SME) Friendly Concordat that provides a set of principles for local authorities to support local businesses and a diverse marketplace.
“Well documented examples from all over the UK and other parts of the world show how local authorities can design and deliver procurement processes in ways that suit their circumstances and align with the goals of improved effectiveness, efficiency and local economy” said Mr Caddie.
Mr Caddie said he plans to present the proposal as part of his election ‘mini-manifesto’ to be released in August.
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