Premier Gallant: Want to avoid a government crisis over $1600? Adopt reverse auction bidding for all contracts, says NDP

FREDERICTON – The recent crisis created by the Liberal government’s signing, and then tearing up, of a $500,000 contract to build snow ploughs, show that change is needed in the way our government runs contracts. Reverse auction bidding offers a better way to protect New Brunswick taxpayers and New Brunswick companies.

New Brunswick New Democratic Party leader Dominic Cardy said, “Reverse auctions are simple: make all bids available for everyone to see, online. Companies can change their bids at any point before the competition closes, making sure New Brunswickers get the most out of every dollar in tax money our government spends. The bidding process should be fully transparent and accessible, and allow companies to see other bids and alter their own bids in real time, to ensure that the best mix of competition and fairness is achieved. This process is used in numerous American states and cities and is a best practice we should adopt here.”

Cardy said: “If Craig Manufacturing had seen that their bid was $1600 higher than the Quebec company who won the contract then Craig’s could have adjusted their price. They could have highlighted the difference in government costs that they felt made their bid the genuine lowest bid.”

Cardy said: “It doesn’t make sense that one local company like Craig’s could lose a huge contract for the sake of $1600 while a company next door could be given millions in government handouts. We need to level the playing field so it’s fair for New Brunswick companies and fair for New Brunswick taxpayers. It’s time to end corporate handouts and time to change the way we do business. Let’s invest in reverse auction bids and save public money.

Because New Brunswick deserves better.”