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Bucks seeks FM partner

13 January 2011

Buckinghamshire County Council is seeking partners to run its building maintenance and FM services.

EGov Monitor reports that just before Christmas 2010, the Council issued Invitations to Tender to eight prospective bidders under a Framework set up recently by the Government. Bids to run these services on behalf of the Council and for schools who wish to participate must be returned on 15th February.
In April 2011, BCC's Cabinet is expected to consider the evaluated bids with a view to starting a contract in July 2011. The successful bidder would have a contract for five years with a further two years option to extend.
The Council invests some £12m per year on building maintenance and improvements and a further £5m on delivering its property related services. About 50 staff currently delivering the services would expect to transfer to the new service provider.
BCC's Cabinet decided last April to market test Property Services as part of a wider review of its support services.
Any future provider would take on the full remit of BCC's property maintenance, including schools and other BCC-owned premises, reception services for the County Hall, Aylesbury complex and High Wycombe, FM services for office and civic buildings and current contracted services for reprographic, cleaning, grounds maintenance, waste, clinical waste, bottled water, PAT (portable appliance testing) and fire extinguishers.
Frank Downes, Buckinghamshire's Cabinet Member for Resources, said: "It is vital that the County Council’s buildings are maintained and perform well. We do invest considerable sums of money into our buildings and need to ensure we achieve the best value from that investment. This is one avenue we are looking at in the interests of making savings and improving efficiency to the benefit of service users and council taxpayers whilst seeing what additional benefits and innovation can be achieved from working with a private sector partner."
The Council is consulting with unions, and the Federation of Small Businesses throughout the bidding process.
(Reported in eGov Monitor 7/1/2011)

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