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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 12 Hansard (26 October) . . Page.. 5035..


Supplementary answers to questions without notice

Social procurement

Environment—e-waste

MR CORBELL: I apologise if they are not in the correct order, but in question time on 18 October Ms Bresnan asked me how social procurement considerations were take into account when awarding an e-waste contract. My answer is that a social procurement criterion was not included in this request for quotation process or evaluation methodology. The development of the request for quotation was underway prior to the introduction of the requirement for social tendering. The services were subsequently not considered suitable for social procurement, largely due to the technical nature of e-waste processing and the requirement to have an in-depth understanding and appreciation of the processes employed, the environmental and health and safety issues, access to downstream supply chains and access to markets for the disposal of component parts.

Prior to the introduction of the social procurement policy, the waste and recycling industry regularly delivered social outcomes. It often provides employment opportunities for entry level, low skilled workers or those seeking re-skilling following an absence from the workforce. Under the government's social procurement policy, ACT NoWaste includes social tendering in its procurement processes where appropriate. For instance, the request for tender for the management of the reusable facility at the Mitchell Resource Management Centre and the request for tender for provision of weighbridge services for Mitchell and west Belconnen resource management centres both included social tendering requirements.

Ms Hunter asked me a question related to this matter on 18 October about why Renewable Processes only awarded the contract for secondary waste, not the main contract, given that they are the local provider that employ staff with mental health issues. The answer to Ms Hunter's question is that Renewable Processes were not rated as the best value for money and no weight was given as to whether a company was local or not in deciding whether to issue the company a contract when the request for quotation was assessed. A social procurement criterion was not included in this request for quotation because the request for quotation was underway prior to the introduction of the requirement for social tendering.

Ms Le Couteur asked me a question on the same day in relation to e-waste collected in the ACT being stored at Mugga Lane prior to being recycled by a local company called Renewable Processes. Ms Le Couteur said:

Renewable Processes only has this role temporarily because the government is waiting for a national company called MRI to take over the recycling of e-waste.

She asked: "Have the contracts been signed for MRI and Renewable Processes, the two chosen providers, and what is holding up the contracts being finalised?"I can advise Ms Le Couteur that contracts with both MRI and Renewable Processes have been signed.


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