In an effort to save thousands of taxpayer dollars at the state and local level, the State issued a tentative award to Federal Express for express mail service. In the spirit of the Governor’s “Fiscal Fitness” initiative to provide efficient government to the Rhode Island taxpayer, the State’s Purchasing Division determined that express mail service and overnight delivery was extremely decentralized. Further, the State was not leveraging its purchasing power and agencies were paying extremely high retail rates for express delivery service on an ad hoc basis. The Purchasing Division requested proposals from express delivery carriers to centralize overnight delivery across State government, and to get the best rate possible under a centralized contract. Federal Express prevailed, and the State will pay as much as seventy percent less for express mail services.
The Purchasing Division extended the scope of the contract to local cities, towns, and school districts across Rhode Island. Therefore, local municipalities can take advantage of the State’s buying power, resulting in even more tax dollars being saved at the local level. This concept of a cooperative agreement between the state and local municipalities allows the State to negotiate the best rates possible by leveraging purchasing power.
The Governor stated, “Every tax dollar saved through better purchasing is money that can be put back into the taxpayer’s wallet, or can be used for providing a better education for our children.” The Governor also recognized that cooperation between the State and local cities and towns in the purchase of goods and services is extremely important. The Governor emphasized, “An individual school district or a town may not be buying the volume needed to negotiate the best rate possible. However, if you combine all of the cities, towns, and school districts in Rhode Island, along with the State government, vendors or suppliers will certainly be willing to reduce their rates. In the end everyone wins, especially the taxpayer.”