A measure to increase the efficiency of the State’s procurement process unanimously passed both chambers of the Hawaiʻi State Legislature today.
SB1329, which was introduced by Senator Donna Mercado Kim (Senate District 14 – Kapālama, ‘Ālewa, Kalihi Valley, Ft. Shafter, Moanalua Gardens & Valley, portions of Hālawa and ‘Aiea) requires that procurement protests be addressed expeditiously by establishing time limits to resolve certain procurement protests. The measure also amends the cash or protest bond amount for parties initiating administrative proceedings for review of certain protest decisions.
“Inefficiencies in our State’s procurement process causes project delays and increases the overall cost of state-awarded projects,” said Senator Kim. “It is important that the review process for protests is completed in a timely manner in order to reduce the cost burden for taxpayers.”
Senator Kim also believes that this measure is a step in the right direction in towards procurement reform in Hawaiʻi.
“For as long as I’ve been in elected office, complaints about the State’s procurement process has always been an issue,” noted Senator Kim. “The State Procurement Office is the only agency that doesn’t have a deadline to review bid protests. In an effort to expedite the review process, this bill establishes time limits to resolve the protests of awarded projects that are not resolved by mutual agreement.”
The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk for consideration. He has until June 21, 2021 to notify the Legislature of the bills he intends to veto. The Governor must either sign or veto bills by July 6, 2021. If no action is taken, the bill becomes law without his signature.