Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority (MRWA) has submitted its Defence documents to the High Court, following Covanta’s recent legal challenge to the Authority’s decision to appoint SITA UK as the Preferred Bidder for the Merseyside and Halton Waste Resource and Recovery Contract.
MRWA announced its preferred bidder in April 2013 for its waste resource and recovery contract, after an extensive procurement process.
During this time each bidder developed their detailed solutions and put forward the final bids to be evaluated.
That evaluation assessed the “most economically advantageous tender”, and took account a range criteria including sustainability, whole life costs to ensure value for money, and any risks the authority would, or might be exposed to by the different solutions of the two bidders.
Carl beer, MRWA – “The Authority regrets that Covanta has decided to pursue litigation following that decision. MRWA will be vigorously defending the claim brought against it, and today (31 July 2013) has filed a detailed Defence to the claim brought by Covanta”
According to MRWA, the evaluation was scrutinised by nine elected members from the five District Councils on Merseyside that are part of the Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority governance structure.
Carl Beer, chief executive of Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority said: “Following a detailed and fair evaluation process, Sita was selected as the preferred bidder. Covanta’s bid scored less than SITA UK’s winning bid, and in two of five areas of evaluation scored zero and so was found to be fundamentally unacceptable.
“In addition, during evaluation, parts of the Covanta bid were seen to present serious risks including financial risks, to which the Authority, District Council and Merseyside Council Tax payers would be exposed. These risks were determined to be such that, in public law terms, it would be ‘irrational, in breach of fiduciary duties and therefore unlawful’ to enter into a contract with Covanta.
“The Authority regrets that Covanta has decided to pursue litigation following that decision. MRWA will be vigorously defending the claim brought against it, and today (31 July 2013) has filed a detailed Defence to the claim brought by Covanta.
“This Defence strongly rejects the various allegations which have been made by Covanta, and sets out the significant risks to which Covanta’s solution could have given rise for MRWA if it had been taken forward.”