Lord mayor pledges contracts for Brisbane and SEQ small businesses

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Brisbane City Council will actively seek out local small businesses to contract for the council’s procurement spend, lord mayor Adrian Schrinner has pledged, but opposition councillors have criticised his promise as “hollow”.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Cr Schrinner made the promise to invest 80 per cent of the council’s procurement spend in Brisbane and south-east Queensland businesses to support the region’s industry.

Cr Schrinner said the council would also weight quotes from Brisbane businesses with an additional 30 per cent in their favour when considering tenders.

“Going forward I’d like to see the vast majority of our business going to south-east Queensland businesses,” Cr Schrinner said.

“I’m also announcing today that for contracts of $250,000 or less, council will preference quotes from local suppliers first.

“If no quotes are available from Brisbane, we will then source them from wider in Queensland.”

Cr Schrinner said the decision was made to support Brisbane’s small businesses to grow into medium businesses and large businesses.

But opposition councillor Jared Cassidy criticised the move, moving an unsuccessful urgency motion calling on the council to condemn the LNP administration for its track record in employing local small business.

“We have just heard some hollow words from the hollow man himself saying … we’re going to back Brisbane businesses,” Cr Cassidy said.

“But we know the real LNP record here in Brisbane, and they should hang their heads in shame.”

Cr Cassidy said the administration had spent just 2.3 per cent of its procurement spending on local business, citing large international contracts with the council as consuming much of the council’s procurement spend.

Labor councillors complied the 2.3 per cent statistic after working through council’s contracts for the past 15 months.

Deputy mayor Krista Adams dismissed the Labor claims, saying she didn’t know where Cr Cassidy had found the 2.3 per cent statistic from.

Cr Adams said the council spent 68.5 per cent of its procurement spend in Brisbane and south-east Queensland businesses.

Labor candidate for lord mayor Rod Harding said Brisbane City Council had awarded multiple large-scale contracts to international companies in the past year.

Originally published via Brisbane Times.

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