Architects Oppose Legislation to Restrict Contracts for Services
SB1041 (Ketron) HB478 (Curtiss) Please vote ‘NO.’
This bill requires state agencies who wish to contract with outside entities for services to certify that no state employee in the department is capable of doing the work and that no vacant positions which might be filled by individuals who could perform the work exist.
State employees who are professionals manage and process this work as the owner’s representative. The issue is not whether they are qualified to do the work, because they all should be, the issue is the separation between responsibilities. The quantity, quality and diversely experienced personnel required to provide all design for state projects—highways, hospitals, high-rise office buildings, data processing centers, day care centers, schools, bridges, storage for hazardous materials, dams—boggles the mind. State employees need to be free to look out for the departments they represent and be removed from the responsibility and details of design.
We urge you to trust the wisdom of the State Building Commission which has spent the past 60 years developing procedures for the design and construction of state buildings. The procedures that are currently in place and those being continually developed and updated work well and will continue to work better provided that the trusted state employees responsible for this work are not shackled with this additional responsibility.
AIA Tennessee supports state and local procurement policies that provide for the selection of design firms that best meet all substantive requirements for a project, including managerial and technical capabilities, related experience, state licensure requirements and adequate local project support.