Letter from South Queens Chamber of Commerce to Major Clarke and Region of Queens
October 31, 2014
Mayor Christopher Clarke
Region of Queens Municipality,
P. O. Box 1264,
I am writing on behalf of the South Queens Chamber of Commerce to express concern with the lack of tendering for building trades projects funded by the Region of Queens.
The Chamber represents more than 90 businesses and individuals in South Queens. Our members are keenly interested in promoting economic activity in our region and we have been very supportive of the exciting project to revive the old Liverpool Town Hall to become a year-round cultural centre on Main Street.
We are disappointed, however, that the work on this and other Region of Queens municipal building projects were not open to tender by the private sector.
South Queens has an extensive, qualified building trades sector, including both suppliers and contractors. They employ certified carpenters and related building tradespeople, and they provide apprenticeship work opportunities for young learners – the people we are so challenged to retain in our rural area. They have worked on heritage properties, constructed commercial and residential buildings, and performed restorations and remodels.
The building trades sector in South Queens is experienced in scoping and bidding on projects locally, regionally and, in some cases, provincially. They compete by expertly planning and completing projects, on time and on budget. They are also taxpayers and as such are keenly interested in seeing public works in the Region completed cost effectively.
The Chamber is aware that provincial regulations prohibit municipalities from favouring local contractors in tendering processes. Our members are confident that they can offer competitive bids. If a lower cost bid is submitted from a qualified company outside our area, our members, as taxpayers, understand that the Region’s first priority must be to ensure that its projects are completed well, at the lowest cost possible.
The South Queens Chamber of Commerce respectfully requests that, in future, the Region of Queens open building and construction projects to tender by qualified private sector builders.