Report 2013-302/2013-303 Recommendation 20 Responses

Report 2013-302/2013-303: Judicial Branch Procurement: Semiannual Reports to the Legislature Are of Limited Usefulness, Information Systems Have Weak Controls, and Certain Improvements in Procurement Practices Are Needed (Release Date: December 2013)

Recommendation #20 To: Administrative Office of the Courts

The AOC, HCRC, Supreme Court, and fourth and fifth districts should implement procedures to ensure that required noncompetitive procurement processes, such as preparing justifications and obtaining approval for sole-source procurements, are properly documented. Additionally, the AOC should ensure that it prepares the appropriate documentation when it amends a contract that it has competitively solicited and the amendment includes a change that was not evaluated in the original competitive process.

Annual Follow-Up Agency Response From November 2016

The Judicial Council of California (Judicial Council) believes its current contracting manual is consistent with the Public Contract Code and the State Contracting Manual and stands by its December 2014 response, explaining why no further action is necessary. To the extent that courts are found not to be complying with applicable requirements, the Judicial Council will evaluate the need to retrain court procurement personnel as opposed to revising existing policy.

California State Auditor's Assessment of Annual Follow-Up Status: Will Not Implement


1-Year Agency Response

We follow the Judicial Branch Contracting Manual (JBCM) in all areas and see no need for further procedures. The Judicial Council (formerly the AOC) maintains documentation in its procurement files for sole source and other noncompetitive procurements, including the preparation of appropriate documentation when it amends a contract that it has competitively solicited and the amendment includes a change that was not evaluated in the original competitive process.

A form is used to document non competitive procurements. The Judicial Council has reminded its staff as well as staff at the appellate courts of the importance of maintaining this documentation in procurement files, and will continue to address documentation requirements for procurement files in future training sessions.

  • Completion Date: November 2014
  • Response Date: December 2014

California State Auditor's Assessment of 1-Year Status: Partially Implemented

Although the AOC states in its 6-month response that it has conducted training that included this compliance requirement, the AOC has not implemented any further procedures to ensure that required noncompetitive procurement processes, such as preparing justifications and obtaining approval for sole-source procurements, are properly documented. Additionally, the AOC has not taken any steps to ensure that it prepares the appropriate documentation when it amends a contract that it has competitively solicited and the amendment includes a change that was not evaluated in the original competitive process.

  • Auditee did not address all aspects of the recommendation

6-Month Agency Response

Consistent with the prior response, the AOC believes these are isolated compliance exceptions covered by policies and procedures and they do not require policy and procedure changes. Training on monthly procurement calls have covered this and training scheduled for the judicial branch entities scheduled for October 2014 will again cover it.

  • Estimated Completion Date: October 2014
  • Response Date: July 2014

California State Auditor's Assessment of 6-Month Status: Partially Implemented


60-Day Agency Response

The AOC believes that these are isolated compliance exceptions and that policies and procedures exist to cover these situations. The AOC has reminded all personnel concerning this compliance requirement and will include the compliance requirement in future training programs and monthly procurement calls.

  • Completion Date: December 2013
  • Response Date: February 2014

California State Auditor's Assessment of 60-Day Status: Partially Implemented

Although the AOC states that it has reminded all personnel concerning this compliance requirement, the AOC has not implemented any further procedures to ensure that required noncompetitive procurement processes, such as preparing justifications and obtaining approval for sole-source procurements, are properly documented. Additionally, the AOC has not taken any steps to ensure that it prepares the appropriate documentation when it amends a contract that it has competitively solicited and the amendment includes a change that was not evaluated in the original competitive process.

  • Auditee did not address all aspects of the recommendation

All Recommendations in 2013-302/2013-303

Agency responses received are posted verbatim.


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