Wednesday, 3 March 2021

Questions (238)

Mairéad Farrell

Question:

238. Deputy Mairéad Farrell asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the details of contracts of €25,000 or more that have been awarded by his Department or bodies under his aegis that were found to be non-compliant with procurement guidelines in 2018, 2019, 2020 and to date in 2021; the value and nature of the contact work carried out in each case; the year of each contract in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11382/21]

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Written answers (Question to Public)

I wish to advise the Deputy that the procurement processes for all contracts in my Department were carried out in accordance with the Office of Government Procurement’s (OGP) Public Procurement Guidelines for Goods and Services which aim to promote an open, competitive and non-discriminatory public procurement regime which delivers the best value for money.

The following table sets out the procurement processes valued over €25,000 (excluding VAT) that were undertaken from 2018 to date by my Department under the terms of Article 32 of the Public Sector Procurement Directive (2004/18/EC). This Article provides for the awarding of contracts without the use of a competitive procedure in certain circumstances, including, for example: where no suitable tenders have been submitted in response to an open or restricted procedure; where competition is absent for technical reasons; and for reasons of extreme urgency brought about by unforeseeable events.

The Deputy will note that there was an increase in the number of Article 32 procurements valued over €25,000 in my Department in 2020, in comparison with 2019. This was substantially due to the operational impacts of the Covid-19 public health emergency, which led to major changes in how the Department delivered on its strategic remit.

Details of all contracts / purchases of more than €25,000 (exclusive of VAT) undertaken without a competitive process, and the reasons for doing so, are notified to the Comptroller and Auditor General when preparing the Annual Appropriation Accounts and published in that context.

Contracts over €25,000 approved by the Department without a Competitive Tender process

Year

Company Awarded Contract

Details of the Contract

Value of Contract (€)

2018

Equinix

To support Government Network connectivity between Public Sector Bodies (PSBs) and telecommunication providers and other third party bodies that PSBs engage directly with

€49,717

2019

Equinix

To support Government Network connectivity between Public Sector Bodies (PSBs) and telecommunication providers and other third party bodies that PSBs engage directly with

€54,853

2020

Equinix

To support Government Network connectivity between Public Sector Bodies (PSBs) and telecommunication providers and other third party bodies that PSBs engage directly with

€55,000

2020

AwS

Provision of IT Cloud Services to facilitate increased demand for Gov.ie services that arose in the context of Covid-19

€100,000

2020

Eir (Security Services)

Provision of IT Security Services to enhance malware detection and prevention systems in response to a National Cyber Security Centre alert on heightened threat levels arising from Covid-19

€123,000

2020

McCann Fitzgerald

Provision of legal advices on advisory notes and legal agreements for use with standard form Capital Works Management Framework contracts in response to Covid-19 measures

€29,520

2020

EUS Holdings LTD

Unforeseen constraints as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic impacted on plans to establish a new contract for the national eTendering Platform - to ensure continuity of service while the procurement process is completed, it was necessary to directly award a contract

€1,264,166

2020

Software One Ireland

Renewal of 3-year licencing for Customer Relationship Management ICT system (D365) awarded to ensure continuity of support for the D365 infrastucture

€103,609

2020

Oxford Global Projects

Advice to inform the development of the new external review process for Major Capital Projects awarded as competition was absent for technical reasons

€35,000

2021 (to date)

AwS

Provision of IT Cloud Services to facilitate increased demand for Gov.ie services that have arisen in the context of Covid-19

€16,672

2021 (to date)

Equinix

To support Government Network connectivity between Public Sector Bodies (PSBs) and telecommunication providers and other third party bodies that PSBs engage directly with

€10,118

I am informed that the position in respect of the Bodies under the aegis of my Department is as set out in the following table.

Contracts over €25,000 approved by bodies under the Department’s aegis without a Competitive Tender process

Year

Body

Company Awarded Contract

Details of the Contract

Value of Contract (€)

2018

Public Appointments Service

Emerald Facility Services

Continuation of commercial cleaning services pending the outcome of a decision on the long-term status of premises. A tender on foot of competitive process was awarded in February 2020

€72,105

2018

Ombudsman’s Office

Accent Solutions

The contract for contract cleaning services had previously been in place, following competitive tendering processes, but this had expired in April 2018. As the lease on our building was due to expire in December 2019, a decision was taken to extend the contract to that date under the same terms and conditions and hold a new tendering process for the new building at the appropriate time.

€27,670

2018

OPW

Various

In 2018, the Office complied with procurement guidelines with the exception of payments totalling €1.62 million: nine contracts with a total value of €514,000 related to urgent specialised work of a security nature; eight contracts to the value of €781,000 related to instances where services were procured from a single suitable supplier or a contractor with specialised expertise or due to urgency; payments to the value of €327,000 were made to five suppliers where no contract was in place.

€1.62m

2019

Ombudsman’s Office

Accent Solutions

Continuation of contract for cleaning services arising due to relocation of premises in December 2019

€33,341

2019

OPW

Various

There were thirty-five contracts for 2019, totalling €2.959 million:

€140,236 related to one contract for urgent specialised work of a security nature; €1,189,526 related to payments to eight suppliers where no contract was in place at the time of supply; €440,207 related to six contracts where the incorrect procurement method was used;

€1,189,307 related to 20 contracts which were procured from a single suitable supplier or a contractor with specialised expertise

€2.959m

2019

Public Appointments Service

Emerald Cleaning Services

Continuation of commercial cleaning services pending outcome of decision on long-term status of premises. A tender on foot of competitive process was awarded in February 2020

€70,000

2020

Public Appointments Service

TEKenable Ltd

Urgent procurement of a suitable external vendor to reduce the timelines to deliver an IT solution in respect of the Temporary Assignment Scheme, which was put in place in response to the Covid-19 pandemic

€58,778

2020

OPW

N/A

The return for 2020 is currently being collated and will be confirmed in the Appropriation Account on 31st March 2021.

N/A

2021

OPW

N/A

There are no known non-compliant contracts in 2021 to date.

N/A