Sunday 19 May 2024
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Council launches tender process for £960,000 book supply contract for Nottingham libraries

Nottingham City Council has taken a to enhance its public library services through a strategic procurement exercise.

The move is aimed at securing a book supply contract for the city’s library service from 2024 to 2030.

Savings of over £750,000 per year could come from the new arrangement.

Background of the Decision

The tender process, overseen by the Commissioning and Procurement Executive Committee on January 9, 2024, was spearheaded by Colin Parr, the Corporate Director for Communities Environment and Resident Services. The decision aligns with the Council’s commitment to ‘Green Clean and Connected Communities’ and other key outcomes outlined in the Council Plan.

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The contract, valued at £960,000 and impacting all city wards, is part of Nottingham’s participation in the East Midlands and Mid Anglia (EMMA) libraries stock consortium. This consortium, comprising eight other library authorities, enables members to combine their spending power to secure significant discounts on book stock, thereby maximising library budgets and ensuring the best value for the Council.

Key Aspects of the Contract

The contract period spans four years, with the possibility of two one-year extensions, making a maximum duration of six years. Nottinghamshire County Council will lead and manage the procurement process, providing legal advice and reducing resource requirements for the City Council.

Nottingham City Council’s involvement in the consortium and the subsequent procurement of the book supply contract through this collective approach allows for substantial discounts on most items purchased. This strategy has been a cornerstone of the Council’s approach to maximizing purchasing power and delivering value to its citizens.

Recommendations and Approvals

The Executive Committee recommended the Council’s participation in this new consortium-based framework agreement. Furthermore, authority has been delegated to the Head of Culture and Libraries to award and sign contracts to successful providers following the procurement process.

Benefits to the Community

The secured contract will ensure the continuation of a diverse and up-to-date book collection across the 15 public libraries in Nottingham, including HMP Nottingham Prison Library. This initiative is expected to support literacy, education, career development, and cultural enjoyment for Nottingham’s residents.

Financial and Legal Implications

Financially, this decision is a part of the Council’s broader strategy to reduce expenditure in library services, as outlined in the Medium Terms Financial Plan (MTFP) 2024/25 to 2027/28. Legally, it adheres to the Public Libraries and Museums Act 1964, ensuring the Council fulfils its duty to provide a comprehensive and efficient library service.

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