Published on 19 November, 2009
|According to SIA, GSA Schedule Programme can offer big savings to local governments|
The Security Industry Association (SIA)
has launched an initiative in which it is asking state legislators to allow local government purchases of security and life safety products through the GSA schedule programme.
The General Services Administration (GSA) has long made products available to the federal government at the lowest price through its Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) programme. In 2008, Congress passed a bill that allows local governments to buy off Schedule 84, which lists security and life safety products, but many states have not enacted legislation to take advantage of this. (In states that have adopted authorising legislation, localities have been quick to seize the opportunity, spending millions of dollars on GSA Schedule 84 purchases during fiscal 2009.) So, SIA is reaching out to state lawmakers across the country to encourage them to adopt such laws.
"Buying off the GSA Schedule can provide big savings to local governments at a time when many are struggling with tight budgets," SIA Director of Government Relations Don Erickson said. "The lower prices can also mean more security, because they make available products that might otherwise have been too costly. This win-win for taxpayers is why we are urging states to allow GSA Schedule purchases by localities."
Erickson also noted that the MAS programme includes only companies that have been vetted, thus saving town, city and county officials the time and expense of pre-qualifying vendors.
SIA worked with the National Association of Counties and other groups last year to lead the effort to enact the "Local Preparedness Acquisition Act" (P.L. 110-248), which allows GSA Schedule 84 purchases by local governments.