Home Office criticised for failures in reforms to criminal records vetting – The Guardian

‘The Home Office has been accused of running a “masterclass in incompetence” over its attempts to improve the criminal records checking scheme.’

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The Guardian, 25th May 2018

Source: www.theguardian.com

Government failure on discrimination and education law services – Legal Action

Posted February 14th, 2018 in education, equality, legal aid, news, public procurement by michael

“It’s not difficult to imagine what would happen if the government announced that it could not guarantee services for, say, something like diabetes. There would be an outcry, ministers would be hauled before parliament to answer questions and would face being skewered on Newsnight. And quite rightly so. In contrast, though, the Legal Aid Agency (LAA) announced this week that it is abandoning the procurement process for education and discrimination law advice, leaving a question mark over the continued provision of these services. So far there has been little or no furore over this decision.”

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Legal Action, February 2018

Source: www.lag.org.uk

Offender tagging scheme is ‘catastrophic waste of public money’ – The Guardian

‘The Ministry of Justice’s programme to introduce the next generation of satellite tracking tags for offenders has been “fundamentally flawed” and proved “a catastrophic waste of public money”, MPs have concluded.’

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The Guardian, 24th January 2018

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Warning of legal challenge to procurement of residential care places for children – Local Government Lawyer

Posted December 13th, 2017 in children, news, public procurement, residential care, social services by sally

‘The Independent Children’s Homes Association (ICHA) has warned that a legal challenge to local authority procurement of care places is possible without radical reform of the current system.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 13th December 2017

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Award of contracts – Local Government Law

Posted November 2nd, 2017 in news, public procurement, regulations, tenders by tracey

‘R (Hersi & Co) v Lord Chancellor (2017) EWHC 2667 (TCC) is concerned with the defendant’s conduct of a public procurement exercise for the award of contracts to provide publicly-funded legal services relating to immigration and asylum and mental health work.’

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Local Government Law, 1st November 2017

Source: local-government-law.11kbw.com

Ignore the procurement dispute timetable at your peril – Practical Law: Construction Blog

‘The parties to procurement challenges are required to act quickly and in accordance with a strict timetable. When a losing bidder issues a claim, it must serve the claim form on the defendant within seven days after the date of issue. Pursuant to CPR 7.4(2), the particulars of claim are to be served no later than the latest time for serving the claim form. That is, they must also be served within seven days after the date of issue.’

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Practical Law: Construction Blog, 18th October 2017

Source: constructionblog.practicallaw.com

TCC publishes guidance note on management of public procurement cases – Local Government Lawyer

Posted July 28th, 2017 in case management, public procurement by tracey

‘The Technology and Construction Court has published a guidance note on procedures for and the management of public procurement cases.’

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Full guidance

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Lifting Automatic Suspension – Local Government Law

Posted June 30th, 2017 in contracts, damages, news, public procurement, transport by tracey

‘In yet another Alstom Transport UK Limited v London Underground Ltd (2017) EWHC 1521 (TCC) the Defendants applied to lift an automatic suspension on contract making imposed by the Utilities Contracts Regulations 2006.’

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Local Government Law, 28th June 2017

Source: local-government-law.11kbw.com

EnergySolutions EU Ltd (now ATK Energy EU Ltd) v Nuclear Decommissioning Authority – WLR Daily

EnergySolutions EU Ltd (now ATK Energy EU Ltd) v Nuclear Decommissioning Authority [2017] UKSC 34

‘A company was unsuccessful in its bid in a tender process carried out by a public authority for a contract which fell within the ambit of Parliament and Council Directive 2004/18/EC (“the Public Procurement Directive”) and Council Directive 89/665/EEC , as amended, which provided for remedies for unsuccessful applicants (“the Remedies Directive”) and which had been given effect to in England and Wales by the Public Contracts Regulations 2006, as amended. The Regulations provided that, after notification of the contracting authority’s decision to award the contract, there would be a ten-day standstill period prior to the actual award of the contract during which time an unsuccessful bidder could issue proceedings to challenge the award. The issuing of proceedings would trigger automatic suspension of the contract award until the challenge was determined or otherwise disposed of, although the court had power to require a cross-undertaking from that party to cover the authority’s losses from not entering into the contract with its preferred bidder. Regulation 47D(2), as inserted, however, allowed for a period of 30 days for the issuing of any proceedings, with regulation 47J(2)(c), as inserted, making provision for an award of damages to the unsuccessful bidder if the court found a breach of duty after the contract had been entered into. The company, having been notified that it was an unsuccessful bidder, expressed its concerns with the procurement process but did not issue proceedings until after the expiry of the standstill period, albeit within the 30-day period. On a trial of preliminary issues, where the authority relied on Court of Justice authority which imposed minimum conditions for claims for breaches of an European Union law right, including that the breach had to be “sufficiently serious”, the judge stated that (i) there was nothing in the Remedies Directive which limited the company to recovery of damages on that basis, and (ii) ordinary principles of English law applied to any award of damages under the 2006 Regulations and so the Court of Justice’s rule would not limit the recovery of damages to “sufficiently serious” breaches of the 2006 Regulations. He declined to make any ruling on a third issue, whether the company’s failure to start proceedings within the standstill period and before the authority had entered into the contract meant that it was not entitled to damages, since it could have acted within the ten-day period to prevent the claimed loss from occurring by causing a suspension of the award of the contract to the successful bidder. On the authority’s appeal on the first two issues the Court of Appeal held that the minimum conditions for an award of damages for breach of an European Union law right had been established by the Court of Justice and so article 2(1)(c) of the Remedies Directive only called for an award of damages where the breach was sufficiently serious, but upheld the judge’s decision that there was no such constraint under the 2006 Regulations, and, on an appeal by the company on the third issue, accepted its submission that the judge ought to have decided as a matter of domestic law that it could not be deprived of damages simply because it had failed to avail itself of the opportunity under the 2006 Regulations to issue the proceedings in time to stop the contract being awarded. The authority appealed on the second and third issues, with the company arguing in relation to the first issue that damages could be awarded under article 2(1)(c) for any breach, whether serious or not. After the hearing the parties reached a settlement of the disputes between them in relation to liability and quantum but requested that the court hand down its judgment on the appeal in any event.’

WLR Daily, 11th April 2017

Source: www.iclr.co.uk

Challenges Arising from Brexit – Henderson Chambers

‘In the light of Brexit, uncertain times lie ahead! How can small businesses cope with the challenges which the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union will necessarily entail and with the uncertainty that will persist so long as no concluded agreement(s) has/have been struck between the British Government and its EU counterparts.’

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Henderson Chambers, 5th April 2017

Source: www.hendersonchambers.co.uk

Routine denial of access to court file in procurement claims is wrong: judge – Local Government Lawyer

Posted April 5th, 2017 in confidentiality, courts, documents, judges, news, public procurement by sally

‘A practice where all public procurement claims are being marked on the court file as “private”, so that access to the court file in such cases is being routinely denied, is wrong in principle, the judge in charge of the Technology and Construction Court (TCC) has ruled.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 4th April 2017

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Judge rules campaigners did not have standing to bring procurement challenge – Local Government Lawyer

Posted March 13th, 2017 in local government, news, public procurement by sally

‘Waverley Borough Council has persuaded a High Court judge that a group of councillors and local residents did not have standing to bring a judicial review claim that a contract with a developer had been varied in breach of procurement law.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 10th March 2017

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

G4S equality helpline contract raises serious concern, high court told – The Guardian

‘Awarding global security firm G4S the contract to run a national discrimination helpline raises “serious and legitimate grounds for concern” and risks undermining the service’s credibility, the high court has been told. A judicial review challenge supported by human rights groups and the Law Centres Network has called on the government to delay transferring operation of the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS) to G4S.’

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The Guardian, 29th September 2016

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Councils defeat judicial review challenge to motions on Israeli settlements – Local Government Lawyer

‘Three councils have successfully defended a High Court judicial review challenge brought by Jewish Human Rights Watch (JHRW) over motions passed in relation to the authorities’ business dealings and Israeli settlements.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 28th June 2016

Source: http://www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk/

No contract protected against the risk of bid-rigging, says expert – OUT-LAW.com

Posted June 22nd, 2016 in competition, contracts, news, public procurement by sally

‘Procurement professionals in all sectors need to be aware of the risk of bid-rigging of contracts they tender, a procurement law expert has said.’

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OUT-LAW.com, 21st June 2016

Source: www.out-law.com

Israel boycott ban: Local councils face legal action at High Court over boycott on Israeli goods made in West Bank – The Independent

‘Local councils are facing legal action at the High Court today over their decisions to impose boycotts on Israeli goods produced in “illegal” Israeli settlements in the West Bank.’

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The Independent, 4th May 2016

Source: www.independent.co.uk

London borough gets enforcement agencies procurement challenge struck out – Local Government Lawyer

Posted April 14th, 2016 in bailiffs, contracting out, local government, London, news, public procurement by sally

‘The London Borough of Waltham Forest has successfully applied to the High Court for a procurement challenge to be struck out.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 13th April 2016

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Ministry of Justice officials ‘helped private firms win government contracts’ – The Guardian

‘Ministers have ordered an immediate inquiry into allegations that former senior civil servants from the Ministry of Justice have used their Whitehall knowledge and contacts to help private companies secure government contracts worth millions.’

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The Guardian, 14th March 2016

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Value of the thresholds under the directives on Public Procurement applicable from 1 st January 2016 – Henderson Chambers

Posted February 24th, 2016 in contracts, EC law, news, public procurement by sally

‘On 15 December 2015, the Commission adopted new Regulations, Regulation (EU) Nos 2015/2340, 2015/2341 and 2015/23421, amending respectively Directives 2004/17/EC, 2004/18/EC and 2009/81/EC in respect of the relevant thresholds for the application of the procedures for the award of public contracts. The reason for this was to set the new procurement thresholds for the two year period beginning 1 January 2016 and to align the thresholds in the Directives with the thresholds applicable under the Agreement on Government Procurement.’

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Henderson Chambers, 10th February 2016

Source: www.hendersonchambers.co.uk

Ministers seek to stop procurement boycotts through new guidance – Local Government Lawyer

‘Public procurement should never be used as a tool to boycott tenders from suppliers based in other countries, “except where formal legal sanctions, embargoes and restrictions have been put in place by the UK Government”, ministers have said in new guidance.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 17 February 2016

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk