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A new state law went into effect on January 1, 2013 that consolidates procurement laws under the Department of Enterprise Services. The goal of the new law is to make the procurement process more transparent, competitive and efficient.
The department worked with customer agencies, vendors and other interested parties to develop new procurement guidelines, policies, rules, processes and best practices. Some changes are in place now, while work continues on other elements of procurement reform.
The Procurement Customer Advisory Group (PCAG) is an important steering committee that DES relies upon in delivering procurement reform. PCAG provides additional rigor and feedback when vetting or interpreting procurement laws, rules and policies. The PCAG is made up of customer agencies including representatives from the departments of Agriculture, Transportation, Health and Human Services, Labor and Industries, Licensing, Lottery, the Office of Financial Management and the state Health Care Authority.
The Department of Enterprise Services (DES) oversees the Washington State Training and Certification Program for the procurement of goods and services, as directed by Revised Code of Washington (RCW) chapter 39.26.110
As people join state agencies or transfer to new jobs within the state, they need the training appropriate to their new jobs.There is a 90-day window to take the training. No agency employee may execute or manage a contract unless they have met the new training requirements, according to the RCW.
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For more information, please contact Cheryl Shaw, (360) 407-9376.
The new law requires Enterprise Services' approval of sole source contracts prior to start of work and review of emergency contracts. Agencies are not required to submit personal service contracts that are competitively solicited for review.
To foster transparency related to state procurement processes and agency contracts, every Washington State agency and public higher education institution is required to annually submit a list of all contracts entered into or renewed for the previous fiscal year. This information will be maintained by the Department of Enterprise Services and made available for public inspection. A project is underway to provide the means and processes to fulfill the intent and mandates of the law.
The new procurement law gives Enterprise Services the ability to debar contractors for cause. Debarment is a process by which a contractor, individual, or other entity is prohibited from submitting a bid, having a bid considered, or entering into a state contract during a period of time specified in a debarment order.