Council defends tender decision

BUNDABERG Regional Council has hit back at criticisms of its decision to award a $650,000 tender to a Brisbane company.

Mayor Lorraine Pyefinch said the council had selected one of Queensland’s largest town planning consultancies to prepare the new planning scheme for the Bundaberg region.

“A majority of Bundaberg regional councillors made a prudent decision on Tuesday to select the planning firm that demonstrated the most experience and best value for ratepayers,” she said in a statement.

“The successful tender was more than $60,000 cheaper than the quote submitted by Insite Strategies.”

Cr Pyefinch said the contract was awarded to Humphreys Reynolds Perkins, on a recommendation from council planning and development officers.

She said the Brisbane company specialised in preparing high-quality planning instruments for high-growth local government areas.

Cr Pyefinch also said the Humphreys Reynolds Perkins project team had a strong familiarity with the Bundaberg Regional Council area, having previously assisted the preparation of the planning schemes for the former Bundaberg City and Isis Shire areas.

Cr Pyefinch said although Insite Strategies was a locally based firm, they intended to sub-contract about 45% of the job to Brisbane-based John Gaskell Planning Consultants and Bayly Willey Holt, which is also a Brisbane-based communications and stakeholder engagement specialist.

“A local business with local knowledge has a significant advantage in our tender assessments but local firms must still be competitive and must demonstrate value for money,” Cr Pyefinch said.

“Other components such as various engineering and environmental studies will also be needed in due course and council would encourage all interested local consultants to consider tendering for this work.”

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