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Sarasota County commissioners will consider changes to the county purchasing policy Jan. 29.
Sarasota Monday, Jan. 28, 2013 4 years ago

Sarasota County consultant recommends rescinding credit card restrictions

by: Alex Mahadevan News Innovation Editor

The National Institute of Governmental Purchasing, a consultant Sarasota County hired in 2011 to analyze procurement practices, will give a final report to County commissioners Jan. 29.

The firm will recommend reverting restrictions on county purchasing credit cards, aka p-cards, to their previous usage allowance prior to the 2011 purchasing scandal that forced former County Administrator Jim Ley to resign.

P-cards currently carry a $50,000 limit and can’t be used on term contracts. The National Institute of Governmental Purchasing identified inefficiencies from p-card restrictions such as a situation in which a worker drove 30 miles to pick up supplies at a county warehouse.

P-card spending fell 59% from $15.1 million in the 2011 fiscal year to $6.2 million in 2012.

The firm also recommends the county raise the $50,000 threshold requiring the “rigorous” sealed bid or proposal process to $100,000. Contractors complained the limit prevented them from submitting quotes for Siesta Key Village crosswalk lighting.

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