None

Municipal Association Offers Cooperative Purchasing Program

City Connect Market, a new cooperative purchasing partnership between the Municipal Association of SC and HGACBuy, now allows South Carolina’s cities and towns to take advantage of volume discounts for their purchases. 

The partnership brings to South Carolina a purchasing program first created by the Houston-Galveston Area Council of Texas in 1975. HGACBuy staff receive bids and assist with local government purchasing around the nation. In addition to improving pricing through volume purchases, the program improves efficiency by eliminating the need for each municipality to handle all details of every competitive bid process.
   
Municipal Association Executive Director Todd Glover launched the program during the Association’s Annual Meeting, noting that the State of South Carolina purchasing contract does not meet many typical purchasing needs for cities and towns, such as for fire trucks or roll carts. 

“When you purchase from this HGACBuy contract, you have the buying power of hundreds of other local governments in the United States,” he said.

HGACBuy helps with purchasing in 41 major categories of products. The category for public works equipment, for example, ranges from garbage and recycling containers to construction and maintenance tools, street maintenance and sweeping equipment, utility meters and traffic control devices, among other items. 

The program handles services as well, and works with more than 800 contractors. Service categories include community planning to public relations and events, temporary staffing and hiring services, emergency planning and recovery services, sewer cleaning services and others.  

How to participate
Officials and staff can learn more on the City Connect Market page. The webpage has links to product listings under all of the contract categories. Users can search through the available products or services, or can contact the Municipal Association with a specific request. The Association will work with the product vendor to ensure that the municipality receives a quote using the HGACBuy pricing guidelines.

After the municipality receives and approves a quote, the Association will work directly with HGACBuy to place the order. The Association serves as a liaison that can assist the municipality throughout the purchasing process. Those cities and towns that wish to use this process should review their procurement ordinances to make sure that cooperative purchasing partnerships are an approved purchasing method. 

Partnership panel with HGACBuy
Jake Broom, the Municipal Association's COO, and HGACBuy will hold a partnership panel event on October 14 at 11:00 a.m. to discuss the benefits of a cooperative purchasing program, how municipalities can use the service and hear from experts in the field. Registration for the event is available online

For more information about the City Connect Market, contact Municipal Association Chief Operating Officer Jake Broom at 803.933.1270 or purchasing@masc.sc