Although public-private partnerships (P3s) are frequently associated with physical infrastructure, P3s are inherently flexible and can be utilized for the time and cost-effective delivery of virtually any public good or service, including software and other information technology. The private sector is constantly expanding and improving upon its government technology offerings (examples include recent advances in smart parking and real-time coordination technology for mass transit), and the public sector is beginning to see the benefit of procuring and maintaining these advanced systems through the P3 model.
This legislative term, the Florida House and Senate are considering a bill (SB 332 / HB 607) that would expand the application of Florida’s P3 statute to information technology. The bill broadly defines information technology to include software, hardware, networks, and numerous other forms of IT. If adopted, the bill will become effective July 1, 2017, and will permit public agencies in Florida to utilize the flexible statutory framework to procure new technology through P3s. The bill would also permit providers of government technology to develop their own creative solutions to governments’ technology needs and submit unsolicited proposals in order to jump-start the procurement process. Continue Reading