That the Housing Services Manager – Development to present a report to the Council Housebuilding Cabinet Committee with regard to EFDC becoming members and using the National Framework to ensure all projects can demonstrate best value for money.
(1) That members agreed that EFDC became members and used the National Framework, as an additional framework to ensure all projects can demonstrate best value for money, quality and where contractors judged on merit.
Rochelle Hoyte, Service Manager, Housing Development presented a report to the Cabinet Committee and asked them to agree that EFDC became members and used the National Framework, as an additional framework to ensure that all projects could demonstrate best value for money, quality and where contractors were judged on merit.
EFDC entered into a framework agreement in October 2018, this agreement was administered by the managing director of Cameron Consulting. The framework agreement consisted of one employer’s agent (EA), one architect and four contractors. Over the last few years only two contractors have tendered for proposals that were put forward.
In order to ensure that EFDC were instructing the right consultants and contractors for the varying complexity of some of the development schemes, it was vital that EFDC were able to tender outside of the current framework agreement.
Furthermore, the current limited framework did not always provide appropriate opportunities to carryout due diligence in terms of cost and quality. This was because the framework was limited to a low number of contractors.
Officers were committed to ensuring that EFDC delivered schemes that firstly met the needs of residents but also achieved our service business goals, which included delivering on time, in budget and providing the highest quality units. To deliver these schemes we will need to be flexible in our approach to working with consultants and contractors going forward.
Using the National Framework Partnership was based on access fees which were calculated on the total cost of the development contract sum. As such these fees would be incorporated in our early feasibility studies to ensure affordability and good value.
The Chairman asked how we could ensure that local contractors were used and was there a way within this framework of firstly preferencing local Epping Forest contractors or Essex based contractors if we had to look further afield.
R Hoyte advised that within the National Framework you would be able to see all of the details from the different contractors and you could look to see what area they were based in, so from that we could tailor the areas we specifically want to concentrate on in the tender response to ensure that we were giving the opportunity first to local businesses.
Councillor J Philip stated that this was definitely the right way to go to give EFDC more choice thereby obtaining better and more economically sensible results. He suggested that neighbouring districts and not only Essex based contractors, for example North London could also be added to the areas tailored for tender responses.
(1) That Members agreed that EFDC became members and used the National Framework, as an additional framework to ensure all projects could demonstrate best value for money, quality and where contractors were judged on merit.
Reason for Decision:
The Council House Building programme was growing and in order to meet the targets set out as a part of the business plan and local plan, flexibility was needed within the tendering process to ensure best value across the programme.
Other Options Considered and Rejected:
There were no other options for action.