Open Bids save money

At Tuesday’s Sioux Falls City Council meeting, councilor Kiley argued that they shouldn’t put the IT expansion project out for bid because the delay would end up costing taxpayers more money. Pulling a crystal ball from his rear aside, that is not always the case.

Back in 2008, the city faced a similar dilemma, a bid was handed over to a contractor to replace the windows on the Pavilion, the problem was that when the Pavilion’s Operations Director turned the bid into the city, he realized later that he forgot to include labor and would have to resubmit the bid.

The controversy caused by this error got the attention of the media, so a lot more contractors bid on the project the second time around.

The city saved over $300K by resubmitting the project, in fact they had to amend the 2009 CIP budget to reflect the cost savings;

Improvements, by deleting $300,000 in year 2009 for windows (CIP p. 2-145).

We have NO IDEA if we are getting a ‘deal’ on the IT expansion because we never put it out for bid. And I can guarantee if it is put out for bid ‘after the fact’ there would be someone who would come in under $1.5 Million.

Open bids save tax dollars, and for councilor Kiley to say otherwise is just ludicrous and ignorant.



5 comments ↓

#1 rufusx on 10.06.19 at 5:22 pm

Upfront costs are not the only – or necessarily the best way to save money.

#2 rufusx on 10.06.19 at 5:26 pm

ESTIMATES (not bids) from a variety of suppliers would be useful in determining whether oir not to open the project for bidding. Bids, as a FIRST step, imply a required award of a contract – based on the estimate included in a bid. And as you have frequently railed on about – change orders and the awarding of contracts solely on the basis of lowest bidder – always leads to added costs.

#3 D@ily Spin on 10.07.19 at 8:55 am

What’s obvious is that Contract Manager at Risk is rigged for profit not quality or cost savings. Prior to CMAR, there was a bid process. However, contractors wouldn’t bid because the city wouldn’t pay if you were not an insider (Daniels vs City). The real problem is that the city has become organized crime because of inflated projects.

#4 Plausible Deniability on 10.07.19 at 12:07 pm

While consumer price/cost of living indexes do trend upward, these assertions that “Everything costs more than it used to”, or “That will cost more next year” are lame, oversimplified arguments. Advances in technology, materials, changes in the economy, fluctuations in the cost of oil (we have seen big oil price decreases in recent history) affecting manufacturing and transportation costs, etc. can result in prices dropping near- and even long-term for certain economic goods and services. Increasing costs of materials and labor year on year is not a fait accompli.

#5 Dutch Mafia Contracting, LLC on 10.07.19 at 11:21 pm

Open collars save on ties. But an open barn door could let the cow out. So you have to be careful, because you never know when being open can be a good or a bad thing. I had an uncle once, for instance, who always forgot to zip his pants, and then eventually he had to go to court because of it and wear a tie.

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