About the NPPC
The Niagara Public Purchasing Committee (hereinafter referred to as NPPC or Cooperative) is a group of public sector and broader public sector agencies working together to promote efficiency, economy, and effectiveness in the purchasing management field.
The NPPC represents tax-supported institutions and agencies within the general proximity of the Region of Niagara. The NPPC is dedicated to providing optimum value and resources to its member agencies and client groups through innovative and progressive procurement
methods, practices and techniques while adhering to federal and provincial legislation, municipal by-laws and agency policy.
- A high standard of ethics and integrity for all members;
- Co-operation and participation by all members, working together to achieve the right price, the right source, the right quantity and the right quality, at the right time;
- Support of fair and open market competition, with an impartial approach to award all contracts and tenders;
- Accountability by all members to the NPPC and to the agencies they represent, for seeking and providing the best value in the most cost effective manner;
- An energetic and proactive approach to customer service;
- An innovative and progressive approach to dealing with changing technology, markets and legislation.
The NPPC was created to maximize value for all municipal taxpayers by working co-operatively to promote efficiency and economy in the areas of purchasing and materials management. It emphasizes communication, standardization and resource sharing. Award of an NPPC
bid takes the form of a contract between the successful vendor and each of the individual agencies.
Control of ordering, scheduling and payment against each contract is retained by the individual purchasing agency. The designated agency responsible for calling NPPC bids is decided on a group basis.
All agency members have endorsed the concept of co-operative purchasing through their continued participation in the group. Considerable dollar savings have been realized, product standardization has occurred and a sharing of product knowledge and specifications freely exists between agencies on a daily basis.
In September 1978, the Niagara Public Purchasing Committee was established. An executive committee was formed, comprised of representatives from the Regional Municipality of Niagara, Brock University, the Lincoln County Board of Education, Niagara College of Applied
Arts and Technology, the St. Catharines Public Utilities Commission and the City of St. Catharines. This executive committee was charged with the task of assuring that all contracts called on behalf of the membership would be handled in a professional and ethical manner.
It was agreed that membership should be open to any agency whose principal funding is derived from tax dollars.
The object of a group co-operative purchasing program, was to derive the maximum value from each dollar spent, through co-operation and professional purchasing procedures. Co-operative purchasing is a technique whereby a number of authorities agree, jointly, to invite
quotations or tenders on selected commodities and services. Each agency can review items under consideration for co-operative bids and participate if it is to that agencies advantage to do so. Control of ordering, scheduling and payment against each contract is retained
by the individual purchasing agency. The responsibility for calling bids is decided on an individual basis with the designated "calling" agency normally being the largest user or having the greatest expertise on the particular commodity.
The concept of co-operative purchasing is not to be misinterpreted as being synonymous with central purchasing. In central purchasing, one authority controls all buying and normally provides warehousing and distribution. All supplies and services are not adaptable to co-operative buying programs.
Each case must be given careful consideration with respect to supply and current market conditions. The following are a few factors considered prior to any commodity being selected for a co-operative bid.
- There may be a potential of hard or soft cost savings;
- Standardization might be necessary prior to any volume savings being possible;
- Current market conditions and supply situation;
- Are current discount structures already providing optimum pricing;
- Is there a possibility that costs could increase due to total service requirement.