Report 2015-116 Recommendation 6 Responses

Report 2015-116: City of Irvine: Poor Governance of the $1.7 Million Review of the Orange County Great Park Needlessly Compromised the Review's Credibility (Release Date: August 2016)

Recommendation #6 To: Irvine, City of

To make certain that Irvine complies with the intent of competitive bidding for professional services, beginning immediately it should not include provisions in its RFPs for potential future services that are above and beyond the desired scope of work.

Annual Follow-Up Agency Response From October 2017

The status of the recommendations the City of Irvine has indicated it will not implement has not changed.

  • Estimated Completion Date:

California State Auditor's Assessment of Annual Follow-Up Status: Will Not Implement

As we stated in our assessment of the city's 60-day response: We are encouraged that Irvine will evaluate whether future service provisions should be included in RFPs on a case-by-case basis but are disappointed that it is choosing not to adopt our recommendation. In its response, the city repeats concerns it expressed in its response to our audit, on pages 56 and 57 of the audit report. We responded to those concerns on page 67 of the report. We stated that we remain concerned that the park review RFP was structured in such a way as to encourage the winning bidder to develop opportunities for future work. We acknowledged on page 28 of the audit report that when a contractor is already familiar with the work it will need to accomplish, a no-bid contract may be more efficient. Nevertheless, we noted that most of the 29 recommendations in the January 2014 report by Irvine's consultant were recommendations for additional work. The structure of Irvine's RFP encouraged such a result by stating that the consultant might need to perform procedures of a more forensic nature depending on the findings in the consultant's final report.


1-Year Agency Response

Please see the City's 60-day response

  • Response Date: August 2017

California State Auditor's Assessment of 1-Year Status: Will Not Implement

As we stated in our assessment of the city's 60-day response: We are encouraged that Irvine will evaluate whether future service provisions should be included in RFPs on a case-by-case basis but are disappointed that it is choosing not to adopt our recommendation. In its response, the city repeats concerns it expressed in its response to our audit, on pages 56 and 57 of the audit report. We responded to those concerns on page 67 of the report. We stated that we remain concerned that the park review RFP was structured in such a way as to encourage the winning bidder to develop opportunities for future work. We acknowledged on page 28 of the audit report that when a contractor is already familiar with the work it will need to accomplish, a no-bid contract may be more efficient. Nevertheless, we noted that most of the 29 recommendations in the January 2014 report by Irvine's consultant were recommendations for additional work. The structure of Irvine's RFP encouraged such a result by stating that the consultant might need to perform procedures of a more forensic nature depending on the findings in the consultant's final report.


6-Month Agency Response

Please see the City's 60-day response.

  • Response Date: February 2017

California State Auditor's Assessment of 6-Month Status: Will Not Implement

As we stated in our assessment of the city's 60-day response: We are encouraged that Irvine will evaluate whether future service provisions should be included in RFPs on a case-by-case basis but are disappointed that it is choosing not to adopt our recommendation. In its response, the city repeats concerns it expressed in its response to our audit, on pages 56 and 57 of the audit report. We responded to those concerns on page 67 of the report. We stated that we remain concerned that the park review RFP was structured in such a way as to encourage the winning bidder to develop opportunities for future work. We acknowledged on page 28 of the audit report that when a contractor is already familiar with the work it will need to accomplish, a no-bid contract may be more efficient. Nevertheless, we noted that most of the 29 recommendations in the January 2014 report by Irvine's consultant were recommendations for additional work. The structure of Irvine's RFP encouraged such a result by stating that the consultant might need to perform procedures of a more forensic nature depending on the findings in the consultant's final report.


60-Day Agency Response

Irvine is not inclined to adopt Recommendation No. 6. The City will, however, continue evaluating whether future service provisions should be included in RFPs on a case-by-case basis.

As noted in the City's June 28, 2016 response to the California State Auditor, the City disagrees with the CSA's conclusion that the RFP impacted the likelihood that HSNO would be selected for the additional work and stands by its determination that the City Council's assessment of HSNO's performance was transparent.

The City's RFP currently has advantages that would no longer exist if Recommendation No. 6 were implemented, including opportunities to negotiate more competitive rates in the first instance and prevent rate increases, and to eliminate time and expenses associated with rebidding processes. In other words, adherence to Recommendation No. 6 could eliminate efficiencies by giving leverage to a repeat bidder. Note: Listed as Recommendation No. 4 in June 28, 2016 letter.

  • Response Date: October 2016

California State Auditor's Assessment of 60-Day Status: Will Not Implement

We are encouraged that Irvine will evaluate whether future service provisions should be included in RFPs on a case-by-case basis but are disappointed that it is choosing not to adopt our recommendation. In its response, the city repeats concerns it expressed in its response to our audit, on pages 56 and 57 of the audit report. We responded to those concerns on page 67 of the report. We stated that we remain concerned that the park review RFP was structured in such a way as to encourage the winning bidder to develop opportunities for future work. We acknowledged on page 28 of the audit report that when a contractor is already familiar with the work it will need to accomplish, a no-bid contract may be more efficient. Nevertheless, we noted that most of the 29 recommendations in the January 2014 report by Irvine's consultant were recommendations for additional work. The structure of Irvine's RFP encouraged such a result by stating that the consultant might need to perform procedures of a more forensic nature depending on the findings in the consultant's final report.


All Recommendations in 2015-116

Agency responses received are posted verbatim.


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