Ann Arbor’s New Auditor: Rehmann Group

At its April 16, 2012 meeting, the Ann Arbor city council voted to award a five-year contract for independent auditing work to The Rehmann Group – based on its $344,500 bid. The contract allows for two one-year extensions.

The recommendation to select Rehmann came from the city council’s audit committee. As The Chronicle previously reported, “… next up for committee members in 2012 will be working to come up with a recommendation on the selection of an auditing firm – the contract with Abraham & Gaffney expires with this year’s audit.”

Abraham & Gaffney, the firm that the city has used for the last few years, also bid on the work. The Abraham & Gaffney bid came in at $387,500. Two other firms also bid for the city of Ann Arbor auditing work: Andrews, Hooper, Pavlik PLLC ($340,500); and Doeren Mayhew ($361,300).

Andrews, Hooper, Pavlik’s was the low bid, but the selection was not made purely on price. The amount of the bid counted for 30 points out of a possible 100. The other two categories were “expertise and experience” (40 points) and “auditing approach” (30 points). Rehmann and Abraham & Gaffney both scored the maximum 70 on the categories other than price. The memo accompanying the resolution indicates that the choice was also based on “a desire to periodically change service providers.” [.pdf of scoring metric and comments]

For Rehmann, then, the fact that it was not the incumbent firm was an advantage for the city auditing contract award. Last year, when it competed for the Ann Arbor Transportation Authority’s auditing contract, Rehmann had found its incumbent status to be a disadvantage. Because of the auditor rotation policy the AATA board had adopted on June 16, 2011, Rehmann was not eligible for selection when the AATA board opted to award the contract to Plante & Moran on Sept. 15, 2011.

This brief was filed from the city council’s chambers on the second floor of city hall, located at 301 E. Huron. A more detailed report will follow: [link]