An intergovernmental agreement between the city and its sister agencies aimed at implementing recommendations of a Procurement Reform Task Force to is up for discussion in City Council’s Budget Committee Meeting today.
The task force was formed in May 2015 to find uniform best practices to govern the award, management, and oversight of contracts with the Chicago Park District, Chicago Housing Authority, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Transit Authority, City Colleges of Chicago, and Public Building Commission, which spend billions in procurement each year. The primary objectives from the Task Force were to standardize contract terms among agencies and make information more transparent for the public. It was co-chaired by the city’s Chief Procurement Officer Jamie Rhee and Inspector General Joe Ferguson.
Representatives from each sister agency participated in the task force, which released its recommendations in November. Recommendations are broken up into immediate, mid-term, and long term–divided by depending on how long it would take to make a change and resources available. The first round of reforms are expected to be done by the end of this winter.
Per a press release, the IGA the Budget Committee would consider provides for the creation of a Chief Procurement Officer Committee and a Chief Information Officer Committee, with representatives from each agency. It also establishes roles and responsibilities for members, an agreement to track progress on recommendations, and give those progress reports to City Council.
Lori Lightfoot, the recently appointed head of the Chicago Police Board and Police Accountability Task Force, helped guide the Procurement Task Force discussions while she was still an attorney at Mayer Brown LLP. Lightfoot also guided procurement reform in 2005 under the Daley administration. The Civic Consulting Alliance also contributed services. More on the task force here.