On April 11, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg signed a responsible bidder ordinance (RBO) which was passed by the Common Council on April 9th. It sets conditions for contractors to be classified as “responsible” and eligible for work on projects of less than $150,000 in value.
An RBO is meant to protect taxpayer dollars as well as small businesses by making sure public works projects are completed efficiently and held to a high standard. They typically contain requirements such as participation in a training program and a clean safety record.
Mayor Buttigieg told WVPE radio that this ordinance was something that the city has been working on for a while. “I really view this as a community effort, there was a lot of leadership on the council,” Buttigieg said, “It was something we’ve been kicking around for a long time, but it took us a while to get it right and make sure that what we came up with really fit South Bend.”
“Ensuring that responsible contractors are prioritized for work opportunities in South Bend protects workers and delivers the best outcome for taxpayers,” said IUOE Local 150 President-Business Manager James M. Sweeney. “The residents funding this work deserve the assurance that their money will go to contractors who are qualified, capable and have a track record of quality and safety.”