Fox Rothschild Wins Injunction To Halt Morris County Bidding Process for Police Car ContractNovember 6, 2017 – Press Releases
Fox Rothschild litigation partner Marc J. Gross won a critical first-round battle in a dispute over the public bidding process to supply and service police cars throughout Morris County when a New Jersey Superior Court judge halted the process and ordered a hearing.
The stakes are high because the contract will designate the supplier of police cars for 241 municipal entities across Morris County.
Gross contends that Beyer Ford in Morristown should have won the contract, but that the Morris County Cooperative Pricing Council and the Township of Randolph violated New Jersey’s Local Public Contracts Law by selecting a winning bidder from Pittsburgh, despite clear requirements that bidding companies must be within 50 miles of Morris County.
Arguing on behalf of Beyer Ford, Gross told Superior Court Judge Stuart Minkowitz that the award of the bid was seriously flawed because the winning company, Day Ford, failed to meet several of the mandatory requirements. Day Ford is more than 50 miles outside Morris County, in Pittsburgh, and while some of the work may be out sourced to another New Jersey company, that company is also more than 50 miles outside Morris County.
Gross argued that the public interest was at stake because proximity rules in public contracts are meant to save taxpayer money.
Judge Minkowitz agreed, saying in a hearing that “this would be irreparable harm to taxpayers … as that money could not be reclaimed.” The judge granted a temporary restraining order that puts the contract on hold and said he will hold a hearing in December to decide whether to compel Morris County to award the contract to a different bidder.
Gross contends that Beyer Ford, a family-owned business in Morristown, should ultimately be awarded the contract because its bid was the lowest among bidders that satisfied all the rules.
Gross focuses his practice on business litigation and the hands-on representation of closely held businesses. Gross served as the President of the Essex Bar Association for the 2007-2008 term. He was assisted on this matter by Fox partner David Restaino and associate Marissa Kingman.