Texas School District Settles Lawsuit for Competitive Bidding
The school district of Cumberland Valley settled a business lawsuit regarding use of competitive bidding for repair services within the school district. The suit, brought by two employees of Carlisle SynTec Systems in 2009, questions the district’s use of using purchasing cooperatives over Texas’ competitive bidding laws. Carlisle SynTec Systems argues the purchasing co-ops have cost tax payers paying higher fees for repairs within the district.
Cumberland Valley school district has agreed only to halt use of co-ops for roofing projects. The district maintains that the contract named in the lawsuit was legally met through a competitive bidding cooperative. SynTec did not seek a monetary claim in the lawsuit. They stated instead they wished only that a court would determine that Cumberland Valley school district misused the cooperative.
In 2009, the Cumberland Valley School District chose Tremco/Weatherproofing Technologies, Inc. for repair work at two of its elementary schools and one of its middle schools. According to a SynTec spokesperson, because the roof at the middle school was still under warranty through SynTec, they could have easily completed the repairs at a lesser cost than the $1.5 million that was awarded to Tremco/Weatherproofing Technologies, Inc. Further, SynTec stated that cooperatives can end up costing two to three times actual market value for repairs and referenced legislation that has passed in Virginia and California prohibiting the use of cooperatives in lieu of competitive bidding programs as well as policy discussion in six other states.