Boniface also chairs the board of estimates, which needs to validate every home acquisition, sale or lease. Technically, the county executive, or his designee, chairs the board, however from day one in this administration, that task has fallen to Boniface.
Back in 1976 when the charter modification that created the board of quotes and the procurement department was approved by citizens, members of the county council serving then were worried there wasn’t enough oversight for county contracts and real estate transactions. The original charter drafted six years earlier did not resolve this, aside from to place a limit above which agreements needed to be competitively bid.
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Some readers might remember that this taken place in an age of contract scandals in Maryland that ensnared the executives of two other counties and a vice president of the United States, among other political leaders in the state. So, there was some extremely sound thinking behind the idea that Harford required a stronger oversight system.
Given, neither Boniface nor Glassman was associated with the political world four years earlier, but lessons from the past can typically be valuable. Especially, if they prevent future missteps.
So, we once again raise the question we have about this property management change as we have many other times: Why is it needed? Why was all this effort put forward, and at taxpayer expense for a supposedly small modification? To exactly what end?
We have made clear in the past– nor now– of our concerns and our criticism of Boniface for his control of the County Charter, both as a county council president for 8 years, which has continued into his brand-new task– a job he would not have actually been able to hold in the first place, if he hadn’t had the charter rewritten for just that function in 2012.
The director of procurement, as do all department heads in the Barry Glassman Administration and the majority of its predecessors, reports directly to the director of administration.