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Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the PURCHASING COMMISSION JANUARY 1 TO DECEMBER 31 1966 British Columbia. Legislative Assembly 1967

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 PROVINCE OF BRITISH COLUMBIA
Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the
PURCHASING COMMISSION
JANUARY 1 TO DECEMBER 31
1966
Printed by A. Sutton, Printer to the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty
in right of the Province of British Columbia.
1967
  Victoria, B.C., January 24, 1967.
To Major-General the Honourable George Randolph Pearkes,
V.C., P.C., C.B., D.S.O., M.C., CD.,
Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of British Columbia.
May it please Your Honour:
Herewith I beg respectfully to submit the Annual Report of the Purchasing
Commission of the Department of Finance for the period January 1, 1966, to
December 31, 1966.
W. A. C. BENNETT,
Minister of Finance.
 The Honourable W. A. C. Bennett,
Minister of Finance, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—We have the honour to submit the Twenty-fourth Annual Report
of the Purchasing Commission, covering the period January 1, 1966, to December
31,1966.
R. G. McKEE,
Chairman.
A. E. WEBB,
Member.
L. J. WALLACE,
Member.
 Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the
Purchasing Commission
January 1 to December 31,1966
GENERAL
Since the total purchases under the Act also include purchase orders made by
the divisions of those departments with authority to purchase delegated under section 10 of the Act, the records from those divisions are also included in the table
below.   Since 1965 was a record year in value of purchases, we are including last
year's figures in the table below for quick comparative purposes.
Department
Number of Purchase Orders
Total Value of Purchase Orders
1965
1966
1965
1966
1,900
786
166
4,248
2,365
52,259
1,870
814
206
3,820
1,590
45,537
$2,800,000
10,000
37,100
1,393,900
4.120.000
$3,200,000
10,460
64,370
1,205,500
4.670.400
Provincial Secretary—
(c) Queen's Printer	
Finance—Purchasing Commission—
(b) For all departments...	
37,750,000    |        40,106,400
Totals  	
61,724
53,837
$46,111,000    |      $49,257,130
1
It will be noted that the over-all value of business transacted increased by 6.8
per cent, most of which is accounted for by the rising cost of goods.  The significant
figures in the above table are the total number of purchase orders which, for approximately the same value of business, dropped 7,887 in number in 1966.   This is in
line with the intent expressed repeatedly in the 1965 Annual Report, which was
that bulk buying would be carried out wherever possible.
It should be pointed out that, in the above table, the total value of purchase
orders includes the value of all the emergency purchase orders issued during the
year, but the number of same is not included in columns 1 and 2.   To do so would
give a very distorted picture of the annual business of the Commission.   The total
annual value of these emergency purchase orders is estimated at less than 5 per cent
of the total value of purchases made in any one year, whereas the number of
emergency purchase orders issued by approved officials in the departments concerned were 30,390 in 1965 and 25,793 in 1966.   Although this represents a reduction of some 4,600 emergency purchase orders in one year, it will never be possible
to eliminate the use of these relatively small emergency purchase orders as long as
there are rush food supplies to be purchased for fire-fighters, frequent purchases of
equipment parts for Government repair garages, emergency repairs to Government
ferries, etc.
STAFF
Last year's report dealt at some length with the work load of the six purchasing
agents of the Commission.   This year it is gratifying to report that an additional
Purchasing Agent 1 was added to the staff on June 1, 1966.
5
 W 6
BRITISH COLUMBIA
In addition, this past summer the Chairman completed a detailed study of other
purchasing agencies in Canada and in British Columbia. This report, with its
recommendations, was submitted to the Civil Service Commission on October 13,
1966, and is still under advisement.
BUSINESS MACHINES SERVICE DIVISION
A comprehensive report on this Division was included in the 1965 report of
the Commission. However, to illustrate the growth of the machine population
explosion, two tables are given below showing an increase of 1,385 machines, or
18 per cent, in 18 months.
Table 1.—Machines as at June 28,1965
Type of Machine
Number in
Departmental
Offices
Number in
Five
Vocational
Schools
Number in
B.C. Institute
of Technology
Total
Number
3,920
1,460
1,061
671
228
75
55
101
61
62
55
4,209
1,597
Dictating and transcribing machines       	
Miscellaneous     equipment — posting,     bookkeeping,
1,116
827
Totals at June 28, 1965	
7,112
459
178
7,749
Table 2.—Machines as at December 31,1966
Type of Machine
Number in
Departmental
Offices
Number in
Seven
Vocational
Schools
Number in
B.C. Institute
of Technology
Total
Number
4,298
1,676
1,285
730
398
53
93
274
64
191
26
46
4,760
1,920
1,404
Miscellaneous    equipment — posting,     bookkeeping,
cash registers, etc—	
1,050
Totals as at December 31,1966	
7,989
12.2
818
78
327
84
9,134
18
From the standpoint of the maintenance staff, not only are the number of these
business machines throughout the Province increasing at an alarming rate, but the
acquisition of the more sophisticated equipment is likewise increasing. For instance,
during the past 18 months one out of every three typewriters purchased was electric,
which raised the percentage from 9 to 13.8, as shown above. Similarly, dictating
and transcribing equipment during the same period increased by 288 machines
or 26 per cent, as shown above. Such electrical equipment not only takes twice as
long to repair but requires more skill and training than for manual equipment.
In the 1965 Report of this Commission the staff was detailed as 1 supervisor,
2 foremen (Mechanics 2), 8 Mechanics 1, and 4 trainees, making a total of 15 men.
This year an additional Mechanic 1 was added through the courtesy of the Department of Education, which Department, as a result of the phenomenal increase of
84 per cent (see above) in business machines for the vocational schools and the
British Columbia Institute of Technology, has agreed to add another trainee for the
1967/68 fiscal year.
 REPORT OF PURCHASING COMMISSION W 7
In addition, at the suggestion of the Business Machines Service Division, the
Department of Labour and the Department of Education are sponsoring the first
eight months' night-school course at the Victoria Vocational School. This course
in electronics is tailored to the maintenance of sophisticated business machines, both
theory and practical application. In all, some 15 trainees are involved, including
8 of the Division's Victoria staff.
THE PURCHASING MANUAL
As stated in the 1965 Report, the Chairman and staff were busy writing a
Purchasing Manual. This manual was completed in 1966, and in September 250
printed copies were received from the Queen's Printer.
This is a manual of policies as authorized by the Purchasing Commission Act
and of procedures which, by trial and error, have been proven correct during the
24 years of the Purchasing Commission's existence.
A sample copy was issued to the Deputy Minister of each Government department, and already 167 copies of this in-service training manual have been distributed
to the departments requesting same.
MISCELLANEOUS
The functions of the Vancouver office and staff of eight were fully explained
in the 1965 Report of the Commission and will not be repeated here, and under the
able guidance of Mr. T. L. Vardy, Purchasing Agent 4, that office had another very
successful year.
The fact that the Commission is responsible for all purchasing, except capital
expenditures, for the British Columbia Ferry Authority was already explained in
the 1965 Annual Report. The amount of buying carried out in 1965 and 1966 for
the Authority is shown on page 5 of this Report.
SURPLUS MATERIALS DISPOSAL SECTION
Under section 20 of the Purchasing Commission Act it is the responsibility of
the Commission to sell all unserviceable equipment, surplus supplies, and all tangible
property declared surplus in writing by the department concerned. The bulk of the
work done by the Disposal Section is for the Department of Highways, as shown
in the following breakdown:—
For Department of Highways—
(a) Equipment and scrap     $39,660
(b) Houses and chattels (rights-of-way)        51,910
For other departments       26,160
Total value  $117,730
LANGFORD WAREHOUSE
Under authority of section 5 of the Act, the Purchasing Commission maintains
a warehouse at 2914 Jacklin Road, where supplies for Government departments are
stored and distributed.
The main functions of this warehouse were fully described in the 1965 Report
of the Commission, hence will not be repeated here, except to report that the departments are making still further use of this non-profit convenience which operates on
a $10 vote.
 W 8
BRITISH COLUMBIA
In 1965 the turnover was $371,893.10, and in 1966 this increased 6.8 per cent
to $407,829.02. The most of this increase was due to inflation, but the fact remains
that due to bulk buying for several departments at one time, with delivery to a central
warehouse, the savings on the essential goods handled, such as tire chains, antifreeze, truck flaps, batteries, etc., is from 30 to 50 per cent.
Another major saving for the departments that use Langford Warehouse is
the elimination of paper work. For instance ihe annual order from the Forest
Protection Division for replacement of fire-fighting equipment is on one requisition,
with an attached list, to the value of from $80,000 to $90,000. If there were no
warehouse, this list would have to be broken down into 25 or more categories of
suppliers, and each category quoted separately and subsequently purchase-ordered
separately.
Another factor that makes the Langford Warehouse so popular is the fact that
many hard-to-get items, such as tire chains, hickory handles, etc., are carried in
stock. From experience, the Supervisor of Stores knows the amount of lead time
required (from three to six months) to get delivery, and governs his requisitions for
replacement stock accordingly.
CONCLUSION
The Commission again gratefully acknowledges the co-operative work done
by the Materials Testing Branch of the Department of Highways, and by the British
Columbia Institute of Technology, and for the specialized purchasing done under
delegated authority by the Queen's Printer, the Director of the Textbook Branch,
the Provincial Librarian and Archivist, and the Superintendent of the Public Library
Commission.
Printed by A. Sutton, Printer to the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty
in right of the Province of British Columbia.
1967

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