My Take on the Deloitte Review of Invest Medicine Hat (IMH) Request For Proposal (RFP) Process
The City spent $75,000 and did not even request a review on what people were so angry about. To be clear, Deloitte did the job they were asked to do, I'm not suggesting they did anything wrong, at all. The problem is they were not asked the right questions.
I was angry about the fact -
1 the RFP was changed so city workers could bid on it, previously not allowed
2 the RFP was vague at best and the Value Added section was very concerning
3 that this ten year contract would be approved before the election, contract would span four different councils between now and 2031
4 that they did not consult with the union about contracting out thereby eroding whatever goodwill we have with them
5 that Orka incorporated Feb 23 2021 4 months before the RFP was tendered
6 that Orka was comprised of 6 IMH employees including Managing Director Jason Melhoff and Senior staff
From the Deloitte report -
Deloitte was requested by the City of Medicine Hat to review the recent RFP process...
For clarity, this report does not constitute an audit of the City of Medicine Hat’s policies, processes or procedures.”
Right off the bat, the City hedged its bets, it specified very narrow guidelines as to what they wanted Deloitte to consider. They specified Deloitte was to determine if the process was conducted:
- in accordance with applicable City policies,
- and generally accepted practices as they relate to procurement in Alberta.
It’s easy to find nothing wrong when you can make your own rules.
From the latest RFP on the City Bids and Tenders page, this is the City’s own paperwork. I wanted to get a sample of a normal RFP.
(I could not copy and paste as it was watermarked so I had to type it all out. If I got something wrong, please let me know.)
7 Conflict of Interest
The proponent must declare all potential Conflicts of Interest, as defined in section 3.4.1 of the RFP. This includes disclosing the names and all pertinent details of all individuals (employees, advisors or individuals acting in any other capacity) who
(a) participated in the preparation of the proposal; AND
(b) were employees of the City within twelve (12) months prior to the Submission Deadline.
Section 7 would disqualify Orka from the get-go but here’s what Section 7 from the IMH RFP states:
Section 7 Conflicts of Interest
Proponent acknowledges and agrees that the City, at its sole discretion, may require Proponent to disclose and address any actual or potential Conflicts of Interest during contract negotiations and/or prior to entering into a contract with the City.
Just a wee bit different eh? Why was it changed? Who ordered the change? We already know who benefited from the change.
But they still insist they did nothing wrong.
Once again I love Linked In! Jason Melhoff’s Linked In profile says his volunteer work included being Chair of Invest Medicine Hat from 2015-2019. Bob Nicolay brought IMH in-house in 2019 then hired Jason Melhoff in February 2020 as Managing Director of Invest Medicine Hat.
Jason Melhoff’s current Linked In profile boasts he is:
Managing Partner - Melhoff Ventures Sep/06 – Present
Managing Director – Melhoff Group of Companies Feb/07 –Present
Managing Director – Freedom Ventures – Jul/13 – Present
Director – Venture 5 Capital Jan/16 – Present
President – Compass Business Centre Oct/15 – Present
IMH is not mentioned.
Yeah, there’s no conflict of interest here <sarcasm>.
How can Jason Melhoff be an unbiased Managing Director of IMH when he is involved in so many of his own business interests?
There is just so much wrong here it will take more than one post
Wait until you see how they changed the Definition of Conflict of Interest in the IMH RFP.