(September 30, 2013 – Hagåtña) Vice Speaker Benjamin J.F. Cruz introduced legislation that would mandate course-based comprehensive procurement certification for all Government of Guam procurement personnel by 2017. Bill 201 comes amid a number of procurement protests that have stalled critical services and prevented the use of vital equipment throughout the Government of Guam, more recently the Department of Education.
“I’m sick and tired of a government that stops working in critical areas because our procurement system has us tied up in knots,” said Cruz, who introduced Bill 201-32 (COR) today. “Without comprehensive training and continuing education, any procurement solution I propose would be pointless.”
Under the new measure, personnel must complete three levels of training to continue in their capacity as procurement officials by October 1, 2017.
The basic training level must include an introduction to contract purchasing methods and ethical issues affecting purchasing decisions.
The intermediate training level must include advanced instruction in formal and informal bidding methods, introduction to negotiation methods, and instruction in writing specifications.
The advanced training level must include an introduction to complex negotiations, and instruction in the criteria for best-value product or service for the contract award.
Failure to obtain certification by the 2017 deadline would result in reassignment. Non-certified procurement personnel may receive preferential status when competing for qualified vacant positions.
“Procurement is a profession; not unlike professionals in the practice of law, teaching, or nursing, procurement personnel must meet a lifelong standard,” Cruz said. “If I had it my way, all procurement personnel would be certified by January of next year but I understand that agencies and affected personnel need time to budget for these expenses.”
Guam Community College, the administrating authority under this measure, has been training both public and private sector procurement personnel since Vice Speaker Cruz partnered with GCC President Dr. Mary A. Okada and qualified procurement experts within our community nearly two years ago to build a comprehensive training and certification program that will be used to meet the requirements of Cruz’s bill.
The referenced documents are attached. For more information, call 687-7567.