A further step towards contract managing the Mt Eden/ Auckland Central Remand Prison has been taken with the release of the Request for Proposals to short-listed companies by Corrections Deputy Chief Executive Sandi Beatie.
Ms Beatie says four prison management companies have been short-listed following the Request for Information which was released to the market by the Department earlier this year.
Responses to the RFP close on 23 August this year.
Earlier this month the Government announced that the Mt Eden/ Auckland Central Remand Prison has been selected to be operated by a contract manager.
The decision comes after a consultation process with staff, unions and iwi on the proposal.
“The safety of the public, staff and other prisoners is our key consideration in all decisions made. Therefore only experienced and reputable prison management companies are being considered.”
Currently there are no New Zealand companies or organisations who have this experience. It is however anticipated that the international companies may partner with local businesses and organisations, or sub-contract them to provide local knowledge and services.
Once responses have been received they will be rigorously evaluated. The companies will be required to provide evidence that they can meet the performance standards and provide the services described in the contract and the legislation. The Department will then work closely with a preferred party and a contract is expected to be signed in early 2011.
The contractor will be required to perform at least as well as Corrections and to employ enough staff of a suitable calibre to meet their legal and contractual obligations.
“Corrections welcomes this opportunity to work with international prison management companies, to gain from best practice, and to share ideas across the wider Corrections system.”
For further information contact the Communications Services Desk
Note for editor:
Last month the Government announced that it intends to commission a new prison at Wiri under a public-private partnership arrangement which will also be operated by a private provider. The process for appointing a private provider for the prison at Wiri is completely separate to the RFP released today.
How many companies have been shortlisted?
Who are they?
The Department is in the process of undertaking a tender process and it would be inappropriate to identify the short listed companies at this point, however they all have significant international experience in the management of prisons internationally – including Australia and the United Kingdom.
Are they New Zealand companies?
The safety of the public, staff and prisoners is paramount in all decisions made. Therefore only experienced prison management companies with a sound track record will be considered. At present there are no companies or organisations with this experience in New Zealand.
The successful bidder will need to be able to demonstrate that they can deliver better outcomes for Maori offenders. We understand that a number of the short listed companies have already started discussions with Iwi as to how they can work together in the management of Mt Eden/Auckland Central Remand Prison. Details of how this might work in practice will form part of the proposals of the shortlisted companies.
When do responses close? What happens then? When is a decision likely to be made?
|24 May 2010||Request for proposals (RFP) released to short-listed parties|
|23 August 2010||Responses close|
|September/ October 2010||Responses evaluated by the Department|
|November/December 2010||Department negotiates with preferred contractor|
|Early 2011||Prison management contract signed with contract manager and decision announced|
|Early 2011||Prison management contract commences|
|March - mid 2011||Facilities handed over to contract manager|
|August 2011||Transition to contractor completed.|
Is this an open tender process?
Yes. The Request For Information was released through the GETS (Government Electronic Tendering System) website in January.
Does this announcement include the old Mt Eden prison?
No. The 120 year-old prison is being decommissioned in December next year. The Department is currently considering best options for the use of this heritage building.
What is New Zealand's past experience with private prisons?
The Auckland Central Remand Prison (ACRP) was managed by the private sector from 2000-2005. Corrections already contracts out a wide range of services like home detention monitoring, prisoner transport, programmes, and facilities management.
How will the Government ensure there is a focus on rehabilitation?
The exact rehabilitative and reintegrative outcomes expected will be built into the contract. The contractor will need to perform as well if not better than existing prisons. Active monitoring and reporting will ensure standards are being maintained.
How will savings be achieved?
It costs an average of $91,000 to keep a prisoner for a year. It is expected that contract managers will be able to achieve efficiencies and innovations that may reduce this cost while maintaining standards and security.
What will be the role of Maori?
Contract management provides different ways for Maori to participate. They may become business partners with the successful contractor, act in an advisory capacity, or sub contract to provide specific services.
How will the Government ensure standards are maintained?
The contractor will be required to comply with the Corrections Act and all other New Zealand laws and international obligations, as well as the terms of their contract with the Department.
Their performance will be measured and monitored against key performance indicators (KPIs) which will be set by the Department and included in the contract.
The private manager will suffer financial penalties if the conditions of the contract are not met. This is a strong incentive to ensure they perform well.
In addition a Prison Monitor, employed by the Department but based in the prison, will ensure the contractor is performing to the agreed standard. Specialist Monitors can also investigate any issues or concerns in a contract managed prison.
The Ombudsmen will still action complaints and can proactively investigate any issues, and Prison Inspectors will also inspect privately managed prisons.
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