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Provision of Leased Accommodation Gatineau 455 Boulevard de la Carrière Project

Fairness Monitor Contractor's Final Report

March 22, 2010

Submitted to: Kristine Stolarik, Chief Risk Officer

Prepared by: Knowles Consultancy Services Inc. and Hill International Inc. in Joint Venture

As Fairness Monitor, Knowles Consultancy Services Inc. and Hill International Inc. in Joint Venture (hereafter referred to as the Fairness Monitor) hereby submits its Fairness Monitor Contractor's Final Report (FM Final Report) pertaining to the competitive procurement process for the Provision of Leased Accommodation Gatineau 455 Boulevard de la Carrière Project, undertaken by Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) through Project Number 5225-2-2009-3. This FM Final Report covers the activities of the Fairness Monitor chronologically, commencing with a review of the draft Selection of Invitees to Tender (SOIT) solicitation through to the completion of the evaluation of the Irrevocable Offers received in response to the Request for Irrevocable Offers (RIO), and the selection of a recommended proponent.

This report includes our attestation of assurance, a summary of the scope and objectives of our assignment, the methodologies applied, and relevant findings from activities undertaken.

Fairness Monitor Attestation of Assurance

It is the opinion of the Fairness Monitor that the procurement process for the Provision of Leased Accommodation Gatineau 455 Boulevard de la Carrière Project, undertaken by Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC), and monitored by the Fairness Monitor, was carried out in a fair manner.

In this context, fairness is defined as decisions made objectively, free from personal favouritism and political influence, and encompasses the elements of openness, competitiveness, transparency and compliance.

Scope and Objectives of the Fairness Monitor Assignment

The overall objective was to provide PWGSC with independent observation and fairness related comments.

Our Fairness Monitor Services included:

  • the provision of fairness related comments on the Selection of Invitees to Tender (SOIT) document in draft and final form including Addenda, to improve clarity, transparency and competitiveness, and to bring attention to possible fairness issues that might arise during the evaluation process;
  • the observation of the evaluation of responses received to the SOIT to ensure the SOIT specified evaluation and selection procedures and departmental policy were followed and consistently applied during the evaluation and selection process;
  • the provision of fairness related comments on the Request for Irrevocable Offers (RIO), including draft versions and addenda forwarded to the qualified proponents, to improve clarity, transparency and competitiveness, and to bring attention to possible fairness issues that might arise during the evaluation process;
  • the observation of the evaluation of the responses received to the RIO and the proponent selection process to ensure consistency with the procedures and requirements specified in the RIO; and
  • the observation of the debriefing of the unsuccessful proponents. (This activity will take place subsequent to acceptance by the Crown of an irrevocable offer and will be reported on in an addendum to this report.)

Fairness Monitor Methodologies, Activities And Specific Findings

Note: Phase 1 of the Project consisted of a Request for Information intended to inform potential bidders of the forthcoming requirement. It commenced on February 23, 2009 and was completed on March 26, 2009 prior to the initiation of fairness monitor activities.

FM Activities Related to the Selection of Invitees to Tender (SOIT) Solicitation and Evaluation of Responses (Phase 2)

FM Activities related to the Draft SOIT

During the period May 25, 2009 to June 18, 2009, the Fairness Monitor Specialist (FM Specialist) reviewed draft versions of the SOIT and provided fairness related observations to the Project Director. All observations were addressed appropriately.

FM Activities related to the SOIT as posted on MERX and Addenda

On July 2, 2009, the FM Specialist reviewed the SOIT posted onMERX .

From July 2, 2009 to September 10, 2009, the FM Specialist reviewed ten (10) Addenda to the SOIT (Documents 2 to 11) in draft form including questions from interested proponents and proposed answers, reviewed the final versions of the Addenda posted on MERX and provided fairness related observations to the Project Director. All observations were addressed appropriately.

On July 25, 2009, the FM Specialist observed the Proponents' Conference held to brief interested proponents on the project and to respond to questions from proponents.

FM Activities related to Preparation for the Evaluation of SOIT Responses

On July 30, 2009, the FM Specialist reviewed a document entitled "Evaluation Procedures for Responses to SOIT (RFQ)" and provided fairness related observations to the Project Director. On September 10, 2009, the FM Specialist reviewed the final version of the document (Document 12) and the evaluation forms (Document 12 attachments) to be used during the evaluation, and provided fairness related observations. All observations were addressed appropriately.

On September 14, 2009, the FM Specialist observed the evaluation kick-off meeting of the Evaluation Board during which plans and procedures for the evaluation were discussed. The plans and procedures were consistent with the SOIT.

FM Activities related to Evaluation of SOIT Responses

During the period September 17, 2009 to October 15, 2009, the FM Specialist reviewed, and provided fairness related observations on draft clarification letters and other letters to proponents requesting certain additional information permitted by the SOIT, and the responses received from the proponents. All observations were addressed appropriately.

On October 16, 2009, the FM Specialist observed the consensus evaluation of the mandatory and some of the point-rated requirements by the Evaluation Board. On October 29 and 30, 2009 he observed the evaluation of the remaining point-rated requirements. He provided fairness related observations during the evaluation process, all of which were addressed appropriately.

On November 16, 2009, the FM Specialist observed a meeting of the Evaluation Board at which the results of the consensus evaluations that took place on October 16, 29 and 30, 2009 were reviewed and finalized.

FM Activities Related to Notification Sent to Unsuccessful Proponent

On November 23, 2009 the FM Specialist reviewed the letter sent to the proponent that had not been successful in qualifying for the RIO phase. On November 24, 2009 he reviewed a response received from the unsuccessful proponent requesting a debriefing and the PWGSC response stating that a debriefing would be provided after acceptance of an irrevocable offer to lease. No fairness issues were identified.

FM Activities Related to the Request for Irrevocable Offers (RIO) and Evaluation of Offers (Phase 3)

Note: The Gatineau 455 Boulevard de la Carrière solicitation uses the term "Invitation to Submit an Irrevocable Offer to Lease" to refer to Phase 3 of the project and the specific solicitation. The associated Fairness Monitor contract, however, uses the term Request for Irrevocable Offers" or RIO to refer to Phase 3. This report will use the latter term – Request for Irrevocable Offers (RIO).

FM Activities related to the RIO Solicitations

On November 23, 2009, the FM Specialist reviewed the three RIO solicitations (Document 14) forwarded to the three Qualified Proponents. The three RIO solicitations, which were identical other than for identifying information pertaining to the specific proponent, included Addendum 1 (Document 15) to the RIO. The Addendum consisted of revised Annexes C, D and H, original versions of which had been part of the SOIT (RFQ) solicitation. Fairness related observations were provided to the Project Director and appropriate action was taken.

During the period November 30, 2009 to December 17, 2009, the FM Specialist reviewed draft and final versions of Addenda 2 to 7 (Documents 16 to 21). Applicable fairness related observations were provided to the Project Director. All observations were addressed appropriately.

FM Activities related to the Evaluation of Irrevocable Offers

On January 4, 2010, the FM Specialist observed the meeting of the Evaluation Board during which the mandatory requirements of the RIO solicitation were evaluated, a consensus agreed on each, and a selection made of a recommended proponent subject to satisfaction of a security clearance requirement. There were no rated requirements. No fairness issues were identified.

Notification of satisfaction of the security requirement was received by the FM Specialist on January 7, 2010.

Peter Woods
Fairness Monitor Team Leader

Roger Bridges
President
Knowles Consultancy Services Inc.

Reference Documents

The following documents are referenced by number in the attached report. Unless otherwise indicated, these documents are available through the Gatineau 455 Boulevard de la Carrière project office.

# Document Additional information
1 Selection of Invitees to Tender Solicitation July 2, 2009
2 Addendum No 1 July 9, 2009
3 Addendum No 2 July 13, 2009
4 Addendum No 3 July 29, 2009
5 Addendum No 4 July 31, 2009
6 Addendum No 5 August 7, 2009
7 Addendum No 6 August 13, 2009
8 Addendum No 7 August 26, 2009
9 Addendum No 8 August 28, 2009
10 Addendum No 9 September 2, 2009
11 Addendum No 10 September 10, 2009
12 Evaluation Procedures for Responses to SOIT (RFQ) September 10, 2009
13 Evaluation Procedures Attachments September 10, 2009
14 RIO Letters (one to each Qualified Proponent) November 20, 2009
15 Addendum No 1 to RIO November 20, 2009
16 Addendum No 2 to RIO November 30, 2009
17 Addendum No 3 to RIO December 7, 2009
18 Addendum No 4 to RIO December 8, 2009
19 Addendum No 5 to RIO December 11, 2009
20 Addendum No 6 to RIO December 14, 2009
21 Addendum No 7 to RIO December 17, 2009

Addendum to Fairness Monitor Final Report dated March 22, 2010 Concerning Provision of Leased Accommodation Gatineau 455 Boulevard de la Carrière Project

This Addendum to the Fairness Monitor Final Report covers the contract award as well as the offer to provide a debriefing to the proponent that failed to qualify for the Request for Irrevocable Offer (RIO) stage. The following should be added to the Final Report as the last section after the section entitled "FM Activities related to the Evaluation of Irrevocable Offers":

FM Activities related to Debriefings

In accordance with the provisions of the SOIT, and as noted above, three proponents were determined to be qualified to submit proposals during the Request for Irrevocable Offer (RIO) stage and were invited to do so. A contract was awarded to the successful proponent. The FM Specialist reviewed an offer to provide a debriefing contained in an e-mail on May 26, 2010 to the proponent that failed to qualify for the RIO stage. The proponent did not respond to the offer of a debriefing. The FM Specialist was satisfied that the offer to provide a debriefing demonstrated that the Crown addressed the matter of a debriefing in a fair manner. None of the other unsuccessful bidders requested a debriefing.

Fairness Monitor Attestation of Assurance

It is the opinion of the Fairness Monitor that the offer to provide a debriefing demonstrated that the Crown addressed the matter of a debriefing in a fair manner. In this context, fairness is defined as decisions made objectively, free from personal favouritism and political influence, and encompasses the elements of openness, competitiveness, transparency and compliance.

Peter Woods
Fairness Monitor Team Leader

Roger Bridges
President
Knowles Consultancy Services Inc.

Date: June 23, 2010