Local businesses won't get special treatment in Windham
Though board members and town officials overwhelmingly agreed on the importance of supporting area vendors, a proposal to require the town to award projects to any local business that comes within 5 percent of the lowest project bid was ultimately shot down on Monday.
Under the revised policy, only purchases over $15,000 would require board and/or town administrator approval, Windham Town Administrator David Sullivan said. The current policy states that the town administrator and the board must authorize any municipal goods and services purchases between $2,500 and $7,500.
Sullivan said further changes to the town's purchasing policy would be finalized during the board's next regular meeting later this month.
"When we put this committee together we believed we could purchase better and with more efficiency and more effectiveness," he told the board. "The system is not broken but it sure as heck can be improved."
The town administrator said he drew the line, however, at making it mandatory to award bids to local merchants.
"We've always encouraged local businesses," he added. "But when we flat out give preference this way, that's when we're getting into iffy territory."
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