NIGP CodeGate’s Deep Throat reveals troubling conflicts of interest at the “non-profit” association by Jon Hansen

Posted on April 6, 2015

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I didn’t have to plant a red flag in a flower pot outside on my apartment balcony – which is a good thing because I don’t live in an apartment . . . nor do I have a balcony.

To start, I do not know the individual who contacted me . . . I won’t even share the name they used because it appears to be, after some research, little more than a quirky play on words pseudonym, as opposed to an authentic identification.

However, and even though it won’t topple a President, what I am about to share with you is nonetheless compelling, in terms of its impact within the sphere of its influence.

Rather than resort to my usual writing prose, I will now provide you with the verbatim exchange I had with a person who, earlier this afternoon, approached me because they had been following my coverage of the NIGP controversy.  The reason I am doing it this way is that I do not want the gravity of what was said to be altered or changed to dilute what the individual felt compelled to tell me.

By taking you with me into the shadowed “garage,” you will hopefully be able to assess not only the words, but the actual emotions, and perhaps even motives revealed in the syntax of the person offering this information.

Deep Throat 2015:  The relationship is closer than you know . . .

NIGP had a consulting practice for many years. A benefit of NIGP having such a practice was that since it was a not-for-profit whose members were governments (membership is held by the government agency) many governments were not required to obtain competitive bids or proposals for these services. They bought them directly from NIGP.

Several years ago NIGP decided to contract out the management of its consulting practice to guess who-Periscope. Although several firms expressed interest to NIGP in competing for this contract, NIGP awarded the contract to Periscope without competitive bids or Proposals.

Many current and former NIGP board members served as NIGP consultants. It may be interesting to find out if any did so after the consulting practice was taken over by Periscope.

Jean Clark, a past NIGP president, recently retired as Arizona state purchasing director and now heads up one of Periscopes practices. Is there a requirement by Arizona that a former employee have a time of separation before going to work by a state contractor. AZ uses the NIGP code and Periscope’s eprocurement system.

Jean Clark (2011) Past NIGP President now with Periscope

Jean Clark (2011) Past NIGP President now with Periscope

My Response: Unless I am missing something here, the NIGP has abused? its not for profit status to circumvent the bid process and then, behind the scenes (low key) sold that consulting practice to Periscope.  In essence, Periscope (a private enterprise) through the NIGP has an unfair competitive advantage that it would not otherwise have.  Do I have this right?

In return the NIGP must realize something financially?

As for Jean Clark, and while related, it is an entirely different and more significant issue in its own right.

I will think about it more, but at this point am I missing anything here?

Deep Throat 2015:The consulting work is done under the banner of NIGP. NIGP has contracted with Periscope to manage the consulting practice in a simular manner as managing the NIGP code. I am sure NIGP gets some fee from Periscope for the consulting work they do under the NIGP banner.

What might be more disturbing much of the consulting work NIGP has done is related to a procurement audit of a government’s procurement process. A part of many of the audits has been a recommendation of procurement automation over the years. Since the audit is under the management control of Periscope they are in a perfect position to recommend eprocurement system features that favor their products, all under the banner of NIGP.

Deep Throat 2015: Go to NIGP.org. Click on the bar “Professional Services”. When you see NIGP.com that is Periscope.

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So there you have it . . . hidden in plain sight, a relationship that is not so arms length.

You also have the answer as to why what is happening with the Missouri bid protest, has become a flash point for many.

As you read the above, is there a conflict or, is this just simply the way business is done in the public sector?

The fact that I am being contacted by more people with corroborating information means that the battle lines are just being drawn.  It also means that this controversy extends well beyond the boundaries of Missouri.

 

Just started following the NIGP #CodeGate story? Use the following link to access the Post Archive; https://procureinsights.wordpress.com/nigp-codegate/

Follow my coverage of this story on Twitter using the hashtags #missbid and #CodeGate

On The Go? You can also listen to the audio version of this post as well as others through @Umano https://umano.me/jhansen

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