IIBEC Congratulates the U.S. Senate for Passing the Construction Consensus Procurement Improvement Act

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January 9, 2020
Photo by Caleb Fisher on Unsplash.

In late December, just before Congress adjourned for the holiday season, the U.S. Senate passed the Construction Consensus Procurement Improvement Act (S. 1434), an important bill supported by IIBEC that affects the design and construction industry.

The Construction Consensus Procurement Improvement Act (S. 1434) prohibits federal agencies from purchasing design or construction services using reverse auctions and includes provisions to ensure federally funded construction projects are competitive—both for cost and quality.

The bipartisan bill is sponsored by U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH), chairman of the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs; and U.S. Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI), member of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship,

IIBEC congratulates Senator Portman and Senator Hirono on passage of this important bipartisan legislation.

In October, an IIBEC delegation, led by President Bob Card and CEO Brian Pallasch, along with First Vice President Scott Hinesley, Director of Industry Affairs Brian Gardiner, and Government Relations Advisor Jeff Taylor, met with Senator Portman’s chief staffer on S. 1434 to provide IIBEC’s perspective on the bill, how it benefits IIBEC members and the federal government, and to offer IIBEC’s strong support for passage of the Portman-Hirono bill.

Unlike a traditional auction where a buyer with the highest bid wins the right to purchase a good or service, in a reverse auction, a buyer seeking a good or service solicits bids, multiple sellers offer bids, and the seller with the lowest bid wins the competition. The practice of reverse auctions in construction and design procurement is ineffective public policy. It fails to properly allocate risk, makes it more difficult for small and disadvantaged businesses to be awarded a bid, and inhibits the competitive bidding process.

S. 1434 now goes to the U.S. House of Representatives for consideration. IIBEC is approaching members of the House to introduce, support, and pass the Portman-Hirono bill.

IIBEC encourages the U.S. House of Representatives to move on S. 1434 bill in an expeditious and bipartisan fashion.

S. 1434 can be found at this link:

https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/BILLS-116s1434rfh/pdf/BILLS-116s1434rfh.pdf.