Local Business Preference Policies For the Mobile Lions Club November 6, 2012 by Semoon Chng For Your Information o “Daily Expenditures per Visitor: Do We Really Know?” at Association for University Business and Economic Research, Honolulu (Hawaii), October 30, 2012. o “Compensation from BP Oil Spill: Is It Fair?” National Association of Forensic Economics, San Diego (CA), January 4, 2013. What is a “local” business? o Business owned by local residents? o What about a multi-state business with a local branch? o Key: (a) own local business license, (b) pay local taxes, and (c) hire local residents. o Assumes that local and outside businesses are equally qualified! Types of Local Preference o In the purchasing stage: Allow a higher bid price for locally produced goods or local suppliers; o In the selection stage in construction and public works: Allow extra points or higher bid prices for local contractors; and o In the hiring stage: Require employment of local residents. First, Cities Cities with Preference Policies: Reviewed in the study o Albuquerque NM o Milwaukee WI o Baltimore MD o New York NY o Berkeley CA o Oakland CA o Chicago IL o Palmetto FL o Columbus OH o Pearland TX o Dallas TX o Phoenix AZ o Detroit MI o Pismo Beach CA o D of Columbia o Redding FL o Fremont CA o Richmond CA o Grover Beach CA o San Francisco CA o Houston TX o San Jose CA o Los Angeles CA o Seattle WA o Memphis TN o Sunnyvale CA. City Policies o Usually, preference limited to businesses that have business licenses with the city and are located within their city limits; o Some like Albuquerque, Los Angeles, Memphis and San Jose, expand their location requirement to include the county in which the city is located; and o Some cities require the local business to have been in their jurisdiction for at least a year. City Policies o 1% to 5% preference with 5% being most popular; o Some cities set a maximum, while others set a minimum, amount of contracts to which preference applies. o Many cities exclude public works and construction contracts from their preference policies. o Reciprocal requirement is not popular among cities unless required by state law. Now, Counties Counties with Preference Policies: Reviewed in the study o Alameda CA o Charlotte FL o Collier FL o Lee FL o Los Angeles CA o Manatee FL o Miami-Dade FL o Monroe FL o Multnomah OR o Sacramento CA o Sarasota FL o Suffolk NY City v. County Policies o A greater number of counties have reciprocal arrangements with other counties. o The percentage preference given to local businesses by counties is higher at 5 to 10% than it is for cities with 1 to 5%. States Three good sources o Annual Survey by NASPO o The web-based purchasing system of the State of Virginia o the Procurement Office of the State of Oregon o Mostly deals with state projects. States with no preference laws n Mississippi n Pennsylvania n Nebraska n Rhode Island n New n Tennessee Hampshire n Utah n New Jersey n Vermont n N. Carolina n Washington n Oklahoma n Wisconsin States with Reciprocal Laws o Colorado o Maine o Ohio o Connecticut o Maryland o Oregon o Florida o Michigan o Pennsylvania o Georgia o Minnesota o South Dakota o Hawaii o Mississippi o Tennessee o Idaho o Missouri o Texas o Illinois o Montana o Utah o Indiana o Nebraska o Virginia o Iowa o New Jersey o Washington o Kansas o New York o West Virginia o Louisiana o North Dakota o Wisconsin. States with reciprocal laws that cover not only state, but also cities and counties o Colorado o North Dakota o Florida o Oregon o Idaho o South Dakota o Iowa o Texas o Kansas o Mississippi o Missouri States without reciprocal laws o Alabama (listed in publication), Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Delaware, District of Columbia, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, and Wyoming. ALA CODE § 39-3-5 : PREFERENCE TO RESIDENT CONTRACTORS IN LETTING OF CERTAIN PUBLIC CONTRACTS o (a) In the letting of public contracts in which any state, county, or municipal funds are utilized, except those contracts funded in whole or in part with funds received from a federal agency, preference shall be given to resident contractors, and a nonresident bidder domiciled in a state having laws granting preference to local contractors shall be awarded Alabama public contracts only on the same basis as the nonresident bidder's state awards contracts to Alabama contractors bidding under similar circumstances; and resident contractors in Alabama, as defined in Section 39-2-12, be they corporate, individuals, or partnerships, are to be granted preference over nonresidents in awarding of contracts in the same manner and to the same extent as provided by the laws of the state of domicile of the nonresident. o (b) A summary of this law shall be made a part of the advertised specifications of all projects affected by this law. o Let me highlight … ALA CODE § 39-3-5 o Unless funded from a federal agency, “preference shall be given to resident contractors,” and a nonresident bidder “shall be awarded Alabama public contracts only on the same basis as the nonresident bidder's state awards contracts to Alabama contractors”; o A summary “shall be made a part of the advertised specifications of all projects” o Clear? Practiced? Recommendations I (all based on equal qualification) o Visit and work on: ALA CODE § 39-3-5 o Cities and counties (and state) may consider reciprocal arrangements of the following nature: o If an outside business submits the lowest bid and its jurisdiction does not have local business preference policies, the contract should be awarded to the outside business. Recommendations … o If an outside business submits the lowest bid and its jurisdiction has local business preference policies, the bid amount by the outside business should be increased by the same percentage preference given to local businesses by the jurisdiction in which the outside bidder is located. Recommendations … o If contracts for works or services are awarded without competitive process, decision-makers of cities, counties, and all private entities should consider utilizing local businesses or businesses that hire local workers. o Use of local workers should be encouraged but not required. At the very least, all local leaders –public and private- o Pass a resolution promising to do their best to work with local businesses and to “buy local” whenever possible… o Possibly, organize a task force to review practices, tax rates, and laws that tend to discourage “buy local” !!! Thank you!
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