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From The New York Foundation For Fair Contracting: The Erie County Legislature ‘Reforms’ Its Responsible Bidder Law, In The Process County Leaders ‘Strengthened Contracting Integrity & Accountability’

Published Friday, February 5, 2021
by NYFFC News
From The New York Foundation For Fair Contracting: The Erie County Legislature ‘Reforms’ Its Responsible Bidder Law, In The Process County Leaders ‘Strengthened Contracting Integrity & Accountability’

(BUFFALO, NEW YORK) - On Thursday (February 4th), the Erie County Legislature passed a Bill to update the 2009 Lowest Responsible Bidder Law, reaffirming the County’s standing as a leader in responsible contracting.

The Law provides tools to ensure contractors bidding on County-owned construction projects have the capability, performance record and business integrity to justify the award of taxpayer dollars and can successfully perform the work.

The New York Foundation for Fair Contracting (NYFFC) - a watchdog non-profit established to level the playing field in public works construction for the benefit of taxpayers, upstanding contractors and Workers, is applauding Erie County leaders for the reform - which NYFFC Representatives say strengthens those tools so contractors who abide by the law and deliver high-quality construction have a fair shot at public works contracts.

“All too often in the construction industry, bad actors gain a competitive advantage by cheating their Workers or taxpayers,” NYFFC Director Matt Kent said. “Erie County’s common sense rules of the road ensure that cheaters do not prosper off our tax dollars.”

The reform, the NYFFC, was made possible thanks to the leadership of Bill sponsors Legislature Chair April Baskin, Majority Leader Tim Meyers and Legislator Howard Johnson.

The Legislature’s Reform Package was enhanced through constructive engagement with the Administration of County Executive Mark Poloncarz, as spearheaded by Deputy County Executive Maria Whyte, an author of the 2009 Law.

Erie County has enforced the Law to reject a contractor that withheld evidence of its troubling safety record and Worker deaths, and a firm that lied about its felony conviction for defrauding New York State by having Workers collect unemployment while performing contracts.

The reform aligns Erie County and State’s Responsible Bidder Standards, makes technical fixes to ensure due process throughout contract awards, and expands coverage to all County Departments that put construction contracts out to bid.

The NYFFC recognizes Erie County as a leader statewide in government contracting accountability and looks forward to approval and implementation.

Municipalities across the state should look to Erie County’s example in awarding hard-earned taxpayer dollars only to the lowest responsible bidders, NYFFC Officials said.

To Read This Labor News Story, Go To: https://nyfaircontracting.org/erie-county-legislature-reforms-responsible-bidder-law/ And For More Information On The New York Foundation For Fair Contracting, Visit: https://nyfaircontracting.org/    

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