NCVO comment on CLG Committee local procurement report
- Thursday, 13 March 2014 16:30
Communities and Local Government Committee report calling on all councils to let contracts on the basis of wider social value rather than lowest price is a timely nudge, the National Council for Voluntary Organisations says.
Karl Wilding, director of public policy at NCVO, said:
'Councils now have the power to look beyond the bottom line and think about what other benefits they're creating for their communities when they award a contract.
'They can choose to award contracts to a charity or another organisation which will help the community in additional ways, for example by taking on and training people who might otherwise struggle to get jobs, rather than whichever company quotes the lowest price.
'Some are doing this enthusiastically but progress has been slow in many areas. The Committee's report is a welcome nudge to those who are yet to take advantage of the opportunity the social value act creates to add something extra for their communities.'
The Committee has taken up NCVO's recommendation that government supports and monitor the implementation of the social value act by undertaking a comprehensive ‘post-legislative’ analysis of the effectiveness of the act before the end of 2015, which should consider whether the act should apply to all public contracts, irrespective of financial value.
The Committee has also called on councils to address the over-zealous application of EU procurement rules and supports NCVO’s recommendation that the Government’s Commissioning Academy be extended to a greater number of local authority staff.