General Laws of Massachusetts - Chapter 7 Executive Office for Administration and Finance - Section 54 Statement of services; wage rates; health insurance; hiring of former agency employees; cost estimate; bids; certification to state auditor

Section 54. No agency shall make any privatization contract and no such contract shall be valid unless the agency, in consultation with the executive office for administration and finance, first complies with each of the following requirements:—

(1) The agency shall prepare a specific written statement of the services proposed to be the subject of the privatization contract, including the specific quantity and standard of quality of the subject services. The agency shall solicit competitive sealed bids for the privatization contracts based upon this statement. The day designated by the agency upon which it will accept these sealed bids shall be the same for any and all parties. This statement shall be a public record, shall be filed in the agency and in the executive office for administration and finance, and shall be transmitted to the state auditor for review pursuant to section fifty-five. The term of any privatization contract shall not exceed five years. No amendment to a privatization contract shall be valid if it has the purpose or effect of avoiding any requirement of this section.

(2) For each position in which a bidder will employ any person pursuant to the privatization contract and for which the duties are substantially similar to the duties performed by a regular agency employee or employees, the statement required by paragraph (1) shall include a statement of the minimum wage rate to be paid for said position, which rate shall be the lesser of step one of the grade or classification under which the comparable regular agency employee is paid, or the average private sector wage rate for said position as determined by the executive office for administration and finance from data collected by the division of employment and training and the division of purchased services. Every bid for a privatization contract and every privatization contract shall include provisions specifically establishing the wage rate for each such position, which shall not be less than said minimum wage rate as defined above. Every such bid and contract shall also include provisions for the contractor to pay not less than a percentage, comparable to the percentage paid by the commonwealth for state employees, of the costs of health insurance plans for every employee employed for not less than twenty hours per week pursuant to such contract. Such health insurance plans shall satisfy the requirements of the fifth paragraph of section nine of chapter one hundred and eighteen F, and shall provide coverage to the employee and the employee’s spouse and dependent children. Each contractor shall submit quarterly payroll records to the agency, listing the name, address, social security number, hours worked and the hourly wage paid for each employee in the previous quarter. The attorney general may bring a civil action for equitable relief in the superior court to enforce this paragraph or to prevent or remedy the dismissal, demotion or other action prejudicing any employee as a result of a report of a violation of this paragraph.

(3) Every privatization contract shall contain provisions requiring the contractor to offer available employee positions pursuant to the contract to qualified regular employees of the agency whose state employment is terminated because of the privatization contract and who satisfy the hiring criteria of the contractor. Every such contract shall also contain provisions requiring the contractor to comply with a policy of nondiscrimination and equal opportunity for all persons protected by chapter one hundred and fifty-one B, and to take affirmative steps to provide such equal opportunity for all such persons.

(4) The agency shall prepare a comprehensive written estimate of the costs of regular agency employees’ providing the subject services in the most cost-efficient manner. The estimate shall include all direct and indirect costs of regular agency employees’ providing the subject services, including but not limited to, pension, insurance and other employee benefit costs. For the purpose of this estimate, any employee organization may, at any time before the final day for the agency to receive sealed bids pursuant to paragraph (1), propose amendments to any relevant collective bargaining agreement to which it is a party. Any such amendments shall take effect only if necessary to reduce the cost estimate pursuant to this paragraph below the contract cost pursuant to paragraph (6). Such estimate shall remain confidential until after the final day for the agency to receive sealed bids for the privatization contract pursuant to paragraph (1), at which time the estimate shall become a public record, shall be filed in the agency and in the executive office for administration and finance, and shall be transmitted to the state auditor for review pursuant to section fifty-five.

(5) After consulting any relevant employee organization, the agency shall provide adequate resources for the purpose of encouraging and assisting present agency employees to organize and submit a bid to provide the subject services. In determining what resources are adequate for this purpose, the agency shall refer to an existing collective bargaining agreement of a similar employee organization whose members perform the subject services, if available, which agreement provides similar resources in the same or other agencies; provided, however, that if no such collective bargaining agreement exists, the agency shall refer to any existing collective bargaining agreements providing such resources, and shall provide such resources at the minimum level of assistance provided in said agreements. The agency shall consider any such employee bid on the same basis as all other bids. An employee bid may be made as a joint venture with other persons. Subclause (h) of clause Twenty-sixth of section seven of chapter four shall apply with respect to all employee bids. Sections four, five and six of chapter two hundred and sixty-eight A shall not apply to the activities of agency employees conducted pursuant to this paragraph.

(6) After soliciting and receiving bids, the agency shall publicly designate the bidder to which it proposes to award the contract. The agency shall prepare a comprehensive written analysis of the contract cost based upon the designated bid, specifically including the costs of transition from public to private operation, of additional unemployment and retirement benefits, if any, and of monitoring and otherwise administering contract performance. If the designated bidder proposes to perform any or all of the contract outside the boundaries of the commonwealth, said contract cost shall be increased by the amount of income tax revenue, if any, which will be lost to the commonwealth by the corresponding elimination of agency employees, as determined by the department of revenue to the extent that it is able to do so.

(7) The head of the agency and the commissioner of administration shall each certify in writing to the state auditor, that:

(i) he has complied with all provisions of this section and of all other applicable laws;

(ii) the quality of the services to be provided by the designated bidder is likely to satisfy the quality requirements of the statement prepared pursuant to paragraph (1), and to equal or exceed the quality of services which could be provided by regular agency employees pursuant to paragraph (4);

(iii) the contract cost pursuant to paragraph (6) will be less than the estimated cost pursuant to paragraph (4), taking into account all comparable types of costs;

(iv) the designated bidder and its supervisory employees, while in the employ of said designated bidder, have no adjudicated record of substantial or repeated willful noncompliance with any relevant federal or state regulatory statute including, but not limited to, statutes concerning labor relations, occupational safety and health, nondiscrimination and affirmative action, environmental protection and conflicts of interest; and

(v) the proposed privatization contract is in the public interest, in that it meets the applicable quality and fiscal standards set forth herein.

A copy of the proposed privatization contract shall accompany the certificate transmitted to the state auditor.

No provision of this section shall apply in any circumstance to the extent that the provision is inconsistent with section thirty-nine M of chapter thirty or sections twenty-six to twenty-seven H, inclusive, or sections forty-four A to forty-four J, inclusive, of chapter one hundred and forty-nine.

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Last modified: September 11, 2015