Department of Economic Development

Administration of the Omnibus Procurement Act

The Omnibus Procurement Act, which became effective in 1993, is intended to help New York State businesses more effectively compete for the contracts awarded by New York State agencies and public authorities. The Act describes certain procedures that must be followed by State agencies and public authorities when awarding contracts, and charges the Department of Economic Development with monitoring compliance with the Act. We audited the Department's monitoring activities as well as procurement activities of selected State agencies and public authorities. We found that, contrary to the provisions of the Act, agencies and public authorities often do not provide advance notice to the Department when they award large contracts to out-of-State firms and often do not submit an annual report to the Department listing their in-State and out-of-State contracts. We also identified weaknesses in the procedures used by the Department to reduce preferential government contracting practices in other states. We make several recommendations aimed at improving compliance with the Act. 95-S-79