Joint/Cooperative Purchasing

What is Joint/Cooperative Purchasing?

Cooperative Purchasing allows government entities to leverage the benefit of procuring necessary goods and services by aggregating volume purchases, securing best pricing, and reducing administrative time and expenses.

Lake County encourages other units of government to cooperatively procure goods and services to improve efficiency, generate greater economies of scale, and achieve costs savings.

Lake County utilizes cooperative purchasing on a national, regional and local scale.  In Fiscal Year 2017, Lake County leveraged more than $8.9 million on cooperative contracts for the procurement of vehicles, information technology software licensing services, facilities maintenance equipment and services, office supplies and maintenance repair and operating (MRO) supplies.  The County routinely identifies cooperative contracts through the State of Illinois, national purchasing cooperatives and the Federal Government Services Administration (GSA).

What are examples of joint bidding/contracting?

Lake County has taken the lead on issuing joint bids with local government entities to procure goods and services that are needed regionally. Examples of contracts include:

•    Bulk Rock Salt
•    Elevator Inspection Services
•    Copy Paper
•    Sand, Gravel and Spoil Removal
•    Crack Sealing
•    Pavement Marking

Lake County has also “piggybacked” on other regional contracts including:

•    Root Control
•    Sewer Televising Services
•    Vehicle purchases 

Lake County Purchasing manages more than 250 active contracts which are available for local government entities to “piggyback” on. The County has included joint purchasing language in bids and requests for proposals that reference the State of Illinois Governmental Joint Purchasing Act (30 ILCS 525/0.01, et seq.).  

The Purchasing Division regularly fields inquiries by other local government entities to utilize existing contracts. Recent inquiries include the following:

•    HVAC maintenance
•    Automatic Vehicle Locators
•    Job Order Contracting
•    Ammunition

Local governments can access Lake County’s awarded contracts at doingbusiness.lakecountyil.gov.  Select the “awarded contracts” button in the center of the page and search by number, vendor name, or contract name.

If you have questions or would like to discuss an opportunity with Lake County, send Lake County Purchasing an inquiry by completing the Joint Purchasing Interest Form.

How does it work?

  1. Develop your Buying Plan for the coming year.

  2. Search available Cooperative Purchasing sites for existing contracts.

    •    Lake County (local contracts) 
    •    State of Illinois
    •    ProcureSource – database of national cooperatives
    •    GSA – Federal contracts for IT and Public Safety

  3. Conduct due diligence on contract documents to review terms and conditions and compliance with local procurement laws.

  4. Enter into agreements with vendors based on the joint procurement.

    a.    Manage the delivery and payment of goods and services.
    b.    Communicate any contract breaches with the lead public agency.

Lake County Purchasing manages more than 250 active contracts that fall into the following categories:

  • 11% Goods and Equipment
  • 18% Construction
  • 7% Leases
  • 35% Professional Services
  • 29% Contracted Services

Common commodities bought on regional scale:

  • Bulk salt
  • Copy paper
  • Elevator Inspections
  • Sand, gravel & spoil removal
  • Crack sealing
  • Pavement marking

What is the County’s role and my agency’s role in joint procurement?

Lake County Purchasing

  • Serve as “owner” of contract
  • Issue and award the solicitation
  • Manage contract renewal process
  • Develop specifications and bid documents
  • Communicate joint bid opportunities

Local Government Agency

  • Administer contract
  • Approve specifications
  • Contact vendor directly for services; take initial steps to resolve disputes
  • Respond timely to joint bids
  • Enter into agreements with vendors based on the joint procurement
  • Manage the delivery and payment of goods and services
  •  Communicate any contract breaches with the lead public agency (responsiveness, delivery times, product quality)

Are you looking to partner on Shared Services?

Lake County has agreements with several local governments for planning/inspection services and Sheriff’s Office patrol. Learn more about our Shared Services initiative and contact the Planning, Building and Development Department for more information at 847-377-2600.