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New P3 Opportunities for Government Technology

Although public-private partnerships (P3s) are frequently associated with physical infrastructure, P3s are inherently flexible and can be utilized for the time and cost-effective delivery of virtually any public good or service, including software and other information technology. The private sector is constantly expanding and improving upon its government technology offerings (examples include recent advances in smart parking and real-time coordination technology for mass transit), and the public sector is beginning to see the benefit of procuring and maintaining these advanced systems through the P3 model. 

This legislative term, the Florida House and Senate are considering a bill (SB 332 / HB 607) that would expand the application of Florida’s P3 statute to information technology.  The bill broadly defines information technology to include software, hardware, networks, and numerous other forms of IT.    If adopted, the bill will become effective July 1, 2017, and will permit public agencies in Florida to utilize the flexible statutory framework to procure new technology through P3s.  The bill would also permit providers of government technology to develop their own creative solutions to governments’ technology needs and submit unsolicited proposals in order to jump-start the procurement process. 

Recent amendments to Florida’s public records laws exempt unsolicited proposals from mandatory public disclosure for a period of time.  Particularly in the government-technology industry, where firms closely guard their technology solutions and intellectual property, this exemption, which is currently up for renewal, is critical.  The exemption from disclosure affords a technology provider some comfort that its unsolicited proposal could not be utilized by its competitors to obtain an unfair competitive advantage. 

Although the bill under consideration should encourage new P3s for government technology, many local governments in Florida already permit the submission of unsolicited proposals for new technology solutions.  Both local governments and technology providers can currently take advantage of these existing provisions to introduce new technologies to the public in less time and at a reduced cost, as compared to traditional procurement and delivery methods. 

© 2017 Bilzin Sumberg Baena Price & Axelrod LLP

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About this Author

Albert E. Dotson, Government Procurement Attorney, Bilzin Sumberg Law firm
Partner

Albert E. Dotson, Jr., Land Development & Government Relations Practice Group Leader, handles federal and local government procurement contracts and compliance. He also represents real estate developers in securing land use, zoning and other government approvals and permits for large-scale real estate developments. Al routinely negotiates economic development incentive programs on behalf of major U.S. corporate clients.

Al's work includes representing developers and contractors in complying with the government procurement procedures of various agencies of the...

305-350-2411
Anthony De Yurre, Bilzin, Real Estate Development Lawyer, Investment Strategies Attorney
Associate

Anthony De Yurre is an Associate in Bilzin Sumberg's Land Development & Government Relations Group and the International Group. His practice focuses on the representation of real estate developers and investors with an emphasis on land use, zoning and governmental relations, and experience including acquisition financing, complex mixed-use and condominium development, construction financing, debt restructuring and distressed asset workouts. 

In addition, Anthony also has experience with complex real estate and corporate litigation and has represented clients in both state and federal court. His litigation background provides him the ability within the Land Development practice to create front-end solutions for clients to avoid future litigation pitfalls. 

305.350.2404
Eric Singer, land development, government relations lawyer, Bilzin Sumberg Law Firm
Associate

Eric Singer is an Associate in the Government Relations & Land Development Group. His practice focuses on government procurement contracts and the development approval process, including planning and zoning applications, government approvals and permits. Eric also represents clients in quasi-judicial matters and has handled land use cases in state and federal courts at the trial and appellate levels.

305-350-2354