Auditor-General’s report into procurement at the Glenorchy City Council

The Auditor-General’s report into procurement at the Glenorchy City Council is very concerning.

The report, tabled in Parliament today, found that the Council failed to comply with the Local Government Act and its own code relating to procurement.

The report concluded that:

  • “Council incorrectly treated each project with CT Management as a separate and individual project. This resulted in commitments to expend Council monies in excess of quotation and tendering thresholds. As a result, Council failed to comply with the Act and its own procurement Codes.
  • “In failing to comply with the Act and its own procurement Codes, Council did not adequately test the market. Council failed to meet its procurement principles of open and effective competition, value for money and enhancement of the capabilities of local business and industry.
  • “There was evidence to indicate an intentional splitting of procurement from a single procurement activity into two or more separate contracts/projects for the purpose of avoiding the requirement to publicly invite tenders.
  • “Council failed to adequately document its assessment and decision not to follow its quotation process or seek tenders. Both the Act and the procurement Codes provide specific and detailed requirements in the application of exemptions. The completion of a Deviation from Purchasing Policy form with an explanation of ‘Approved to exempt requirement for 3 quote – specialised work’, is considered inadequate and indicates a management override of purchasing controls and breakdown in governance practice.
  • “Council also breached the 2016 Code in that there were instances where purchase orders were not evidenced for services provided.
  • “Overall the process adopted in expending $1 051 909 lacked transparency, independent review, reporting and good governance.”

This is very concerning and raises serious questions about the internal practices at the Council and its governance controls.

The Government will now consider the report and what options are available to the Government.

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