This report sets out proposals for the future
commissioning of assisted transport to support mainly children and
young people with disabilities and additional needs with home to
school transport from September 2019 onwards.
Jessica Crowe, Assistant Director Customers, Commissioning and Governance presented the report.
Members asked if the current quality of transport provided would be retained if a Dynamic Purchasing System (DPS) was used. In order to enter into the new procurement process providers would have to meet the agreed quality standards, the standards would be monitored annually during the re tender of routes process. There would be consideration of stability for users and providers, balancing costs with value for money.
Members raised concerns about the way in which assisted transport contracts have been let in the past, and that two firms are noted to have a high proportion of the current spend, and that one firm is known to have a high proportion of its whole income from work for Sutton. It was noted that the new system would support new providers entering the market, and would allow more flexibility than the current framework process used. The DPS would make it easier for providers to bid than in using the current framework. The DPS is reported to be successful in other boroughs, and would create a more transparent approach, allowing Sutton to have more control over price.
Members suggested that there is work that could be carried out to create improved route optimisation and regular reviews of the routes could drive spend down. Route optimisation work is usually completed during the summer, with some in year reviews.
The DPS will be considered for use in the adult transport provision.
An update on adults transport procurement and progress on the assisted transport procurement process will be circulated to Members of the Committee.
Schools will be made aware of the decision of this committee regarding the new assisted transport system via the recently created bulletin.