To the Editor:
I was glad to see Stephen Bauld’s call for clarity on open tendering is his column headlined, “Procurement Perspectives: Bill 66 benefits of open tendering fact or fiction?” that was featured in the Jan. 15 edition of the Daily Commercial News.
As someone who has authored papers with Mr. Bauld on this subject, it’s important to keep a clear eye on the question that forms the centre of this debate.
While I am very happy — indeed look forward — to discussing the cost implications of restricted bidding, which Cardus has researched at length, the key question in discussing Bill 66 is this: Does union affiliation serve as an objective basis for shrinking the pool of bidders in public procurement?
And on that, Mr. Bauld himself has provided a clear answer.
I’ll let him speak for himself: “A survey of the legislative framework and theory behind public procurement, as well as an analysis of empirical studies, show that limiting public procurement by union affiliation does not promote the public interest. In fact, the vast preponderance of evidence and practice suggests that restricting public bidding in this way is not only far outside of the norm, but can have significant and deleterious consequences for the public interest.”
Source: Hiding in Plain Sight: Evaluating Closed Tendering in Construction Markets by Stephen Bauld and Brian Dijkema with James Tonn.
Work and economics program director at Cardus