The Building Tradesman Newspaper

Friday, August 09, 2019

Put 'Michigan Jobs First,' says Whitmer directive

By The Building Tradesman

ROSEVILLE - Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed the "Michigan Jobs First" executive directive on July 29, which "expands the list of factors used to determine whether a bid from a potential supplier would provide the best value to the state," the governor's office said.

Under the new directive, the state must also take into account the  overall economic impact of the potential supplier’s bid on Michigan businesses and workers, the wages and benefits offered by the supplier to its workers, the supplier’s track record of labor and environmental compliance, and the supplier’s commitment to economically-disadvantaged zones.  

“Michigan is home to the hardest working people and best businesses in the world, and our state should work to ensure that more of our Michigan tax dollars support Michigan workers and businesses at every opportunity,” Whitmer said. “We want Michigan to be a home for opportunity for everyone, which begins with supporting businesses that provide fair wages and good benefits. This executive directive will strengthen our commitment to these priorities and bring the greatest possible benefit to Michigan’s businesses, workers, and families.” 

The governor signed the directive at Lecom Utility Contractors in Roseville, a contractor with collective bargaining contracts with the IBEW and Utility Workers union. Whitmer's office said currently only 70 percent of state contracts are awarded to in-state businesses.  

Under the state’s previous procurement process, the Department of Technology, Management and Budget (DTMB) only used the following factors to make a best value determination: price, quality, transition costs, experience, market share, timeliness, and agreement to terms. The new directive, according to the governor's office, will still take into account these factors, but will also include new factors in its determination, such as wages, benefits, labor and environmental track record, and location in economically-disadvantaged zones to weigh a business’s overall impact. 

In 2018, the State of Michigan awarded 8,813 contracts for a value of $2.14 billion.