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Virginia ABC > About > Procurement > Ethics in Procurement

Ethics in Procurement

Purpose of Policy

It is the policy and intent of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority (Virginia ABC) that all personnel having official responsibility for procurement transactions shall be knowledgeable about the provisions of this policy entitled “Ethics in Procurement” and conduct themselves accordingly to ensure the public’s trust. It is up to each individual to ensure they do not violate the guidelines and the spirit of procurement ethics.

Detailed Policy Statement

Virginia ABC employees having official responsibility for a procurement transaction shall avoid any conduct that constitutes, or could reasonably be construed to constitute, a conflict of interest, inappropriate conduct with vendors or corruption. It is important that Virginia ABC employees conducting procurements on behalf of Virginia ABC ensure the public’s trust by avoiding improprieties, as well as the appearance of such improprieties. The integrity and credibility of the procurement program requires Virginia ABC employees to be impartial, fair and free of any relationships that may cause them to be unduly partial to any vendor or product. The procurement of goods and services will be limited to those necessary to the operation and mission of Virginia ABC and its business interests.

I. Proscribed Participation by Virginia ABC Employees in Procurement Transactions

No employee of the Virginia ABC having official responsibility for a procurement transaction shall participate in a transaction on behalf of Virginia ABC when the employee knows that:

  1. The employee is employed by an offeror or contractor involved in the procurement transaction.
  2. The employee, the employee's spouse or partner, or any member of the employee's immediate family holds a position with an offeror or contractor such as an officer, director, trustee, partner or the like, or is employed in a capacity involving personal and any participation in the procurement transaction, or owns or controls an interest of more than five percent;
  3. The employee, the employee's partner, or any member of the employee's immediate family
  4. has a pecuniary interest arising from the procurement transaction; or
  5. The employee, the employee's partner, or any member of the employee's immediate family is negotiating, or has an arrangement concerning, prospective employment with an offeror or contractor.

II. Disclosure of Subsequent Employment

No Virginia ABC employee having official responsibility for procurement transactions shall discuss employment with any offeror or contractor with whom the employee has dealt in an official capacity during the course of a procurement transaction. Vendor may be subject to debarment if determined that discussions have taken place.

III. Prohibition on Solicitation or Acceptance of Gifts; Gifts by Offerors, Contractors or Subcontractors Is Prohibited

  1. No Virginia ABC employee having official responsibility for a procurement transaction shall solicit, demand, accept, or agree to accept from an offeror, contractor or subcontractor any payment, kickback, loan, subscription, advance, deposit of money, services or anything of value present or promised.
  2. No offeror, contractor or subcontractor shall confer upon any Virginia ABC employee having official responsibility for a procurement transaction any payment, kickback, loan, subscription, advance, deposit of money, gifts, services or anything of value. Vendor may be subject to debarment if determined that a violation of this policy has taken place.

IV. Vendor Engagement

Virginia ABC employees should not speak or meet with vendors who are participating, or who are likely to participate, in an active procurement. In those cases where a vendor already has a contract with Virginia ABC but could be participating in a separate procurement, employees should only meet and discuss with the vendor those issues covered under the existing contract. Virginia ABC acknowledges that there will be informational and fact finding meetings with vendors from time to time. The Procurement Division should be notified ahead of these meetings in order to provide guidance and the opportunity to attend. The integrity and credibility of the procurement program requires Virginia ABC employees to be impartial, fair and free of any relationships that may cause them to be unduly partial to any vendor or product. Virginia ABC must ensure the public’s trust by avoiding improprieties, as well as the appearance of such improprieties.

V. Participation in Request for Proposals (RFP) Preparation; Limitation on Submitting for the Same Procurement

No person who, for compensation, prepares a request for proposal for or on behalf of Virginia ABC shall (i) submit a proposal for that procurement or any portion thereof or (ii) disclose to any offeror information concerning the procurement that is not available to the public. However, Virginia ABC may permit such person to submit a proposal for that procurement or any portion thereof if the Virginia ABC determines that the exclusion of the person would limit the number of potential qualified offerors in a manner contrary to the best interests of the Virginia ABC (e.g. limiting Virginia ABC to a sole source procurement).

VI. Purchase of Building Materials, etc., from Architect or Engineer Prohibited

  1. No building materials, supplies or equipment for any building or structure constructed by or for a public body shall be sold by or purchased from any person employed as an independent contractor by the public body to furnish architectural or engineering services, but not construction, for such building or structure or from any partnership, association or corporation in which such architect or engineer has a personal interest as defined in the Code of Virginia §2.2-3101.
  2. No building materials, supplies or equipment for any building or structure constructed by or for a public body shall be sold by or purchased from any person who has provided or is currently providing design services specifying a sole source for such materials, supplies or equipment to be used in the building or structure to the independent contractor employed by the public body to furnish architectural or engineering services in which such person has a personal interest as defined in Code of Virginia §2.2-3101.

VII. Misrepresentations Prohibited

No Virginia ABC employee having official responsibility for a procurement transaction shall knowingly falsify, conceal, or misrepresent a material fact; knowingly make any false, fictitious or fraudulent statements or representations; or make or use any false writing or document knowing the same to contain any false, fictitious or fraudulent statement or entry.

VIII. Insufficient Authorization

No employee shall obligate Virginia ABC without having received prior written authorization in accordance with Virginia ABC’s Procurement Authority Policy. Doing so is a misrepresentation of authority.

 

The willful violation of any of the above provisions may lead to disciplinary and/or legal actions. An annual certification of ethics compliance will be required for all employees who have official procurement responsibilities.

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