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 user 2008-02-27 at 11:16:00 am Views: 41
  • #21297

    Office supplier protests against GPSS contract
    guam:Island Business Systems and Supplies filed an appeal at the Office of the Public Auditor earlier this month against the Guam Public School System regarding the procurement of copiers. On February 7, a procurement appeal was made from the failure to respond to a protest of method, solicitation or award. IBSS wants to know whether the largest agency in the Government of Guam has been properly or improperly procuring copiers.

    The local company is the current distributor of canon imaging and printing solutions. According to IBSS general counsel John Brown, he would like to know whether other companies could participate in public bids. He says for years GPSS has been receiving services from one copier company, Xerox Corporation, without allowing other companies to participate. “It’s been a black hole for a number of years and we’re just trying to peer into that black hole to find out how we can take part in the bidding process for copier equipment,” Brown explained.

    Brown says the OPA completed an audit for the General Services Agency for 2003-2004, noting improper procurement practices for a number of products to include copiers. With that in mind, IBSS continued to look to seek information on how to get involved with bid practices. Since 2005, the firm has been continue verbal conversations with then-superintendent of public education Juan Flores and even continues the dialogue with current superintendent Luis Reyes.

    Brown says GPSS assured them they would issue out competitive bids, but never did so. After following up on their words, IBSS never received responses from their inquiries. Because of this, IBSS had to protest the lack of response of proper bidding, and then later sent out a failure to respond to the protest. This was the last straw and brown felt it was best to make an appeal to the public auditor.

    He continued, “What we hope to come from this is whatever they’ve been doing, if it’s been right – tell us, show us if it’s right. But they refuse to do that so far. It really leads to a presumption that it hasn’t been. But that is a presumption. This is an opportunity to show that it has been done properly. And if it hasn’t been done properly, terminate it. Start with a clean slate and let’s go forward with proper procurement.”

    Meanwhile, GPSS spokesperson Gerry Cruz says they are currently waiting to receive direction from the OPA on how the agency should proceed – he does say GPSS will cooperate. “A lot of documentation has already been given to the OPA through our office and we’re just waiting for a response from them to see where we’re going to go with this case…we’re just waiting direction from the OPA, and that’s where it stands at this point,” he told KUAM News.