I told you last week that NorCo Executive John Brown has issued a no-bid contract to architectural firm DLR Group to study a new jail. Council Solicitor Phil Lauer has rued that Brown sidestepped two requirements in the county' administrative code. First, he ignored the law's preference for competitive bidding. Second he filed to use competitive bidding for a professional services contract.
Brown has done this before. He hired PR firm Sahl Communications without seeking competitive proposals. In that matter, Brown only relented and agreed to do things the right way after Controller Steve Barron sued.
Should Barron sue again? It's unlikely that Council will take Brown, a fellow Republican, to court. Also, the public loses confidence in our government when one branch sues another.
But when an Executive makes a mockery of our bidding process, which is designed to prevent insider dealing, does Barron have a choice?
Both arguments have merit.
What do you think?
Updated 10:15 am, McClure Condemns No-Bid Contract: "John Brown is once again violating Northampton County law. This continues a years long, disturbing pattern that we had hoped would end. It's County Council's job to block this law breaking. Unfortunately, the Republican majority does not have the courage of its convictions. It's time for a change of the corrupt, callous and crony-filled Brown Administration."