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FYI: Contracting with the city is starting to get easier. Legislation signed by Mayor Bloomberg last week means no more public hearing for non-competitive bids for city contracts up to $500,000 (unless one is requested). Thirty-eight percent of the hearings held last year for things like foster care, legal services and child care won’t be necessary, a big improvement considering that nine times out of ten, there are no public comments. Other changes include raising the small purchase limits for services to $50,000 and allowing agency heads to delegate who will run public hearings. Streamlining the city’s onerous contract requirements has been a political battle in the past, but a new City Council and new mayor seem to have found common ground and more improvements are promised. 6/19/02

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