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Michigan Panel Passes IIBEC-Backed QBS Bill

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June 23, 2024

By John Boling

On June 18, 2024, a Michigan legislative panel approved legislation that would expand the use of qualifications-based selection (QBS) for the selection of architect and engineering design (A/E/D) professionals, sending it to the full House for a vote.

Specifically, Michigan HB 5654, introduced by state representative Amos O’Neal (D), would create a study from January 1, 2025, to December 31, 2032, and require state agencies to use QBS to select A/E/D professionals for projects with an estimated cost of $250,000 or more.  This study would significantly expand the use of QBS across the state government and require the Michigan Department of Technology, Management, and Budget (DTMB) to submit an annual report summarizing the state’s experiences with QBS. Currently, only the Michigan DTMB is required to follow QBS, but other state agencies that use federal funds for the procurement of A/E/D professional services also must comply with QBS requirements.

The Michigan House Regulatory Committee passed the bill out of committee on a 14–0 vote one week after a hearing on the bill. At that hearing, Jim Watson, IIBEC Great Lakes Chapter president, registered the chapter as a supporter of the legislation. The previous week IIBEC submitted a letter of support for the legislation and asked the committee leaders to make it a priority.  The letter was signed by Brian Pallasch, IIBEC executive vice president and CEO; Watson; and Elise Love, RRC, West Michigan Branch liaison.

IIBEC worked with Ron Brenke, PE, executive director of the American Council of Engineering Companies of Michigan & American Society of Civil Engineers Michigan Section to support the legislation and will continue working with him to educate the legislature on the benefits of using QBS. We will report significant developments in future newsletters.