Transcript: Introduction to Procurement Obligations in the Nunavut Settlement Area
As procurement specialists, we have an important role to play in the Government of Canada. We must be fair, open, and transparent in all things we do.
It is more important than ever to strengthen the relationships between the federal government and Indigenous businesses and to create mutually beneficial arrangements.
So, let's take a look at procurement and real property leasing in the Nunavut Settlement Area.
Step One: Check to see if the Nunavut Directive applies to your contract (including real property leases)
Anyone involved in the procurement process will need to be aware of the Nunavut Directive whenever they are contracting in the Nunavut Settlement Area. If you are procuring goods, services, construction, or leasing real property for Nunavut, you should check to see if this Directive applies.
"where the deliverable(s) or a portion of the deliverable(s), include final delivery or performance in or into the Nunavut Settlement Area".
Although not typical, this Directive includes real property leases.
The Directive is clear on how to deal with a conflict between policy and legal requirements.
"In the event of a conflict between a requirement in this directive and a requirement in any other Treasury Board or departmental policy instrument, the requirement in this directive will apply. In the event of a conflict between a requirement in this directive and a legal obligation, including an obligation under the Agreement, the legal obligation will apply."
Step Two: Make sure you consider any special obligations that may apply
Some of these obligations can affect your procurement strategy so it is important to be aware from the start!
For instance, depending on your market research, you may need to unbundle your contract by commodity groupings to allow smaller and more specialized Inuit firms to bid.
You may also need to know about the local area and traditional activities so you can set the date, location, and terms and conditions for bidding appropriately.
Step Three: Check the Inuit Firm Registry and determine if you need to limit bids to Inuit firms
Check the Directive to see whether you need to limit bids to Inuit firms. For the purposes of the Nunavut Directive, a firm is an Inuit firm if, and only if, it is registered on the Inuit Firm Registry (IFR) which is maintained by NTI.
Limiting these bids depends on the dollar value of the procurement contract or real property lease, and the number of firms on the Inuit Firm Registry.
The Nunavut Directive establishes preferential contracting requirements related to the establishment, operation, or maintenance of park facilities; and carrying out archeological work. For all other procurement contracts and real property leases a mandatory policy measure applies:
Step Four: Ask firms to include Inuit and Nunavut Benefits Criteria
- For real property leases of $100K or less and contract tenders of $5-25K, bids must be limited if there is at least one Inuit firm on the IFR.
- For real property leases over $100K and contract tenders over $25K, bids must be limited if there are at least two Inuit firms on the IFR.
- Otherwise, open bidding is permitted.
Depending on the estimated dollar value, of the contract or lease, the bid criteria may need to include Inuit or Nunavut benefits criteria.
So, you will need to request a benefits plan from bidders that you can later evaluate.
Inuit Benefits Criteria rate bidders on whether they have included training, employment, and subcontracting opportunities for Inuit.
The Nunavut Benefit Criterion rates bidders on whether the business or part of the business is in the Nunavut Settlement Area.
There are rules surrounding the weighting and evaluation of these criteria depending on dollar value, sourcing strategy and commodity type. Ensure you know what these are!
Be sure to build in monitoring and reporting requirements so you can hold firms accountable to the benefits they agreed to deliver.
Step Five: Solicit bids and award the contract
If you have followed the previous steps and applied the Nunavut Directive then you should be on track to putting in place a successful procurement contract or real property lease that follows the Nunavut Directive!
Step Six: Once you have a contract in place, don't forget to check in on your contract
Contract monitoring is key for all procurements and leases, especially those that include Inuit and Nunavut Criteria to ensure that benefits outlined are provided.
Step Seven: Documenting and Reporting
- There are special requirements for documentation and reporting under the Nunavut Directive.
- There are guides and templates available online!
Follow these steps for a successful contract in the Nunavut Settlement Area!
And remember, this is the general approach to the Nunavut Directive.
There may be more complex procurements that require additional planning. Always consult the Nunavut Directive and related guidance found on the Treasury Board Secretariat's web site.