The Atlanta Administrative Services Building. Image via Google Maps.
Earlier this week Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms introduced a series of changes to the city’s procurement processes to the council.
The reforms take a multifaceted approach to the operations of Atlanta’s procurement practices, according to city materials. These modifications include:
- The transition to a new e-Procurement system, which will automate the procurement process and the exchange of information between the City and its suppliers
- The mandate that the identification method of bid submissions be included in the invitation for bids
- The requirement that all small purchases greater than $50 but less than $20,000 be submitted to the Department of Procurement for sourcing
- The institution of a not-to-exceed aggregate amount of $20,000 for all small purchases for each department, per vendor per fiscal year
- The provision of competitive compensation for Procurement Appeals Hearing Officers
This summer, Bottoms appointed retired Lieutenant Colonel David Wilson to serve as the city’s new chief procurement officer. Through his career, Wilson supported 40 different, diverse organizations managing a total of $1.2 billion in service, commodity and construction contracts. He was recognized by the Air Force for outstanding contracting and management.
Under Wilson’s leadership, the city has already worked to improve transparency and accountability in its procurement processes. Wilson has made annual ethics training mandatory for procurement department employees, standardized internal documents and templates and established new performance metrics to track efficiencies in acquisitions.
Over the next 90 days, Wilson’s procurement department will be conducting an independent audit review of all contracts over $1 million, increase market research requirements, establish a procurement management review program and restructure around a more customer-centric model.
“As part of the One Atlanta platform, I pledged to create a more ethical, transparent and fiscally responsible government,” Bottoms said in a statement. “My procurement reform package not only transforms the way the City acquires vendors and third-party contracts, it also curbs spending and minimizes fiscal waste. As we continue to work towards restoring public trust, our Administration remains committed to implementing sound business processes in the City of Atlanta.”