Mayor Adams, MOCS Director Flores Launch Passport Public, New Portals To Provide Transparency In City Procurement Process

June 3, 2022

New York City Mayor Eric Adams and Mayor’s Office of Contract Services (MOCS) Director Lisa M. Flores today announced the beta launch of PASSPort Public, a data transparency portal that will give unprecedented insight into the city’s main procurement system.

The city’s Procurement and Sourcing Solutions Portal (PASSPort) is the City of New York’s end-to-end digital procurement platform that manages every stage of the procurement process, from vendor enrollment to the solicitation of goods and services to contract registration. PASSPort Public beta makes that current information available to city vendors, not-for-profits, and the public.

PASSPort Public beta drives procurement transparency and accountability through data-driven analytics. For new and small businesses who face barriers to accessing the procurement process, in particular the minority- and women-owned business enterprise (M/WBE) community, PASSPort Public beta represents a new window into city contracting.

“It’s often said that sunlight is the best disinfectant — and we’re finally bringing some much-needed sunlight to our opaque procurement system,” said Mayor Adams. “Not only will this provide greater insight into the process, but it will also drive more equitable outcomes, particularly for minority- and women-owned business enterprises. I applaud the work of Director Flores and the Mayor’s Office of Contract Services in launching PASSPort Public beta, and I look forward to the myriad benefits this tool will provide for our agencies, vendors, and the public.”

“Creating a more equitable procurement process starts with transparency and accountability, which are hallmarks of this administration,” said City Hall Chief Counsel Brendan McGuire. “PASSPort Public will provide policymakers, vendors, and the public with crucial information about the city’s contracting system, helping us increase the share of city contracts that go to M/WBEs, pay vendors in a more timely manner, and strengthen oversight over the process.”

“We cannot improve our M/WBE utilization rates without radical transparency and accountability, and PASSPort Public beta will play a vital role in achieving these goals,” said Deputy Mayor for Economic and Workforce Development Maria Torres-Springer. “We are eager to break down all the barriers our minority- and women-owned business enterprises face in competing for city contracts and believe PASSPort Public beta will be another tool in advancing this mission.”

MOCS is releasing a beta version of PASSPort Public, with the intent to invite visitors to engage with MOCS in fine-tuning the website features. Feedback can be shared with MOCS through the tool located at the bottom of the homepage. PASSPort Public beta is continuously being updated, and MOCS looks forward to incorporating constituents’ feedback in future versions

“Transparency into the procurement process is crucial in turning the tide of late payments to city vendors and providing true accountability across government operations,” said MOCS Director Flores. “PASSPort Public beta allows the many constituents of city contracting greater insight into where a certain contract may be, what solicitations are being planned, and information on those doing business with the city. We hope to build on this, inviting feedback across the spectrum, to iterate on this functionality to improve our key performance indicators and data analytics.”

Earlier this year, Mayor Adams and New York City Comptroller Brad Lander released “A Better Contract for New York: A Joint Task Force to Get Nonprofits Paid on Time,” which identified concrete steps to reform and improve the city’s procurement process, particularly for human services providers. The recommendations in the report included building accountability and transparency into the contracting process through public reporting on key performance indicators. PASSPort Public delivers on that recommendation, underscoring the Adams administration’s dedication to ensuring all city vendors are paid on time, in full, and on a predictable schedule, while protecting against fraud and abuse.

“The City of New York’s opaque and complex procurement processes have long been a barrier to timely and effective services for New Yorkers and to opportunity for smaller minority- and women-owned businesses and non-profits,” said New York City Comptroller Brad Lander. “The mayor and I convened a taskforce before taking office because we understand that reforming this system is critical to a well-functioning and equitable city. The beta launch of PASSPort Public will open a new window for vendors, bringing greater transparency and accountability to the procurement process.”

“Contracting with the city is a hugely complex and mysterious process that prevents new or smaller organizations from receiving city contracts. PASSPort public is a great first step in demystifying the process and building accessibility and transparency into the procurement process,” said New York City Councilmember Julie Won, chair, Committee on Contracts. “I applaud Director Flores and her team on this accomplishment, and I look forward to working with the Mayor’s Office of Contracts Services to incorporate language accessibility and more programs to help nonprofits and M/WBEs partner with the city.”

“Opening up timely and re-usable data is critical for the integrity and effectiveness of the city’s public procurement, especially when these insights are integrated into a data-driven and inclusive decision-making process. We are pleased to see MOCS increase transparency within their PASSPort procurement system,” said Reilly Martin, senior program manager, Open Contracting Partnership. “We appreciate MOCS’ willingness to solicit feedback from a range of key stakeholders and look forward to partnering with them to see how we can bring greater transparency to the city’s procurement and set the standard for open contracting.”

Equity, diversity, and inclusion are fundamental objectives of PASSPort Public beta, with fields dedicated to providing insight for M/WBE vendors who want to contract with the city, as well as fields to support agencies in identifying potential M/WBE vendors. Detailed search information on the status of M/WBE vendors supports greater insight into the disparity within the disparity.

PASSPort Public beta features a variety of data visualization and information-seeking functionality, all of which are designed to deliver analytics methodology and underlying raw data that can be downloaded. The underlying data encompasses contracts between city agencies and vendors since PASSPort contracting went live in June of 2020 as well as vendor disclosures since the launch of PASSPort in August 2017.

Home Page:  The home page displays selected statistics that align with the city’s strategic initiatives across the categories of “Vendors,” “Solicitations,” and “Contracts.” Feedback and suggestions on how to further improve PASSPort Public can be shared via the “How likely are you to recommend PASSPort Public to a friend or colleague?” survey at the bottom of the home page.

Vendor Browse: The site includes a searchable interface that provides information about individually filed vendors (filed meaning the vendor successfully enrolled in PASSPort). Search options include vendor search by name and M/WBE certification. Search results comprise vendor name, DUNS Number, and M/WBE Certification (if available).

Solicitation Browse: The site includes a searchable interface that provides information on solicitations managed in PASSPort. Search options include solicitation search by commodity, RFx status, industry, and city agency. Search results comprise RFx details, including RFx status, release and due dates, main commodity, and more.

Contract Browse:  The site includes a searchable interface that provides information on contracts in PASSPort. Search options include contract search by agency, vendor name, industry, M/WBE certification, procurement pin, contract ID, and contract status. Search results comprise contract details, including procurement method, contract status, value, encumbered amount, and contract start and end dates.

Data Info:  The site also includes detailed data descriptions, guides on how to use the information, and directions to helpful links and resources.

Go to find out more minority- and women-owned business enterprise (M/WBE) information.

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