June 25, 2019

June 24, 2019

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Proposed Changes to Local Preference for Government Contracts in Miami-Dade County

We have in the past discussed how government contracts are not utilized only to acquire goods and services for the public, but to further public-policy objectives. For example, procurement regulations at all levels of government—federal, state, and local—frequently incorporate preferences in the bidding process for certain types of companies, such as small business, local businesses, minority-owned businesses, etc. Regulations of this type are not “one size fits all”—they vary drastically from one jurisdiction to the next or even one type of contract to the next within the same jurisdiction. In order to be competitive, it is critical that government contractors understand the applicable regulations. In fact, we have been involved in several bid protests challenging contract awards where the core dispute is premised upon a failure to comply with local-preference regulations. 

Miami-Dade County is currently considering a revision to its local-preference regulations. If adopted, the change could be significant, as the ordinance would prioritize local businesses that have certain certifications (certified Small Business Enterprises) over local businesses that do not. As a result, local businesses will need to attempt to obtain the additional certification in order to retain the same competitive advantage that they enjoyed before. The Board of County Commissioners approved the ordinance on “first reading” on January 23, 2019, and it is currently scheduled for a public hearing on February 11 before the Housing, Social Services, and Economic Development Committee. If recommended for approval by the committee, the ordinance will be considered by the full Board of County Commissioners for final approval at “second reading”—most likely in early March.

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About this Author

Albert Dotson, Bilzin Sumberg Law Firm, Real Estate and Land Development Attorney
Partner

Nationally recognized for his work on public-private partnerships (P3), Al's experience includes rail and transit facilities, airports, marinas, sports stadiums, convention centers, healthcare/life sciences facilities, educational institutions, water and sewer facilities, and parking structures.

Al is recognized throughout Florida for his work representing local, national, and international clients in responding to government contract solicitations and defending against, or prosecuting quasi-judicial and judicial bid protests.

305-350-2411
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