Council is giving £100million of work a year to local firms

Coun Ed MalcolmCoun Ed Malcolm
Coun Ed Malcolm
Council bosses are celebrating a scheme which they claim is worth more than £100million a year to South Tyneside firms.

South Tyneside Council’s ‘Supply South Tyneside’ initiative has seen £700million worth of work and services spent with companies in the borough since 2011.

Since 2011, STC has spent a total of £712million in South Tyneside and hit its 50 per cent spend target for the first time in 2016/17.

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The South Shields 365 project has provided opportunities for local firmsThe South Shields 365 project has provided opportunities for local firms
The South Shields 365 project has provided opportunities for local firms

Coun Ed Malcolm, cabinet member for resources and innovation, said: “Every year the council spends more than £150million on a wide range of goods and services, from stationery and food to construction products and IT equipment.

“The suppliers of these products help the council to provide a wide range of key services.”

He added: “We are always looking at ways to increase the amount we spend in the borough while achieving best value for money, which is why we have made changes to the way we procure products and services.”

The figures were revealed in minutes of the council’s contracts performance panel meeting - which was largely held behind closed doors to protect commercial interests.

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The documents also revealed the council had a gross revenue budget of £446million, of which £151million was spent with external companies.

Demolition work for the South Shields 365 project to regenerate the town centre are among the schemes available for firms to bid for.

Other initiatives out for tender include the Viking Energy Centre in Jarrow; flood prevention works in Cleadon and at Tyne Dock, and work at Temple Park and North Marine Park.

The council used 5,667 suppliers in 2017/18, with adult social care and regeneration projects accounting for the biggest proportion of spending.

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Social care contracts alone are worth more than £66million for 156 contracts to provide carers’ support and supported living services, among other things.

Supply South Tyneside commits the local authority to contact at least two local firms that have registered with the scheme when contracting supplies and services worth less than £75,000.

At least three local companies will be invited to tender for construction contracts worth less than £150,000.

James Harrison, Local Democracy Reporting Service