Welcome and Introduction

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Budget cuts and aggressive procurement timelines continually challenge fire agencies. Public safety and municipal leaders must seek creative ways to save money and reduce overhead to keep budget cuts from affecting staffing. Group or cooperative purchasing is a solution to reduce costs and efficiently purchase the products and services that are critical for fire departments. This procurement method has been an option exercised on a regional basis for years and is now a popular procurement method utilized by all types of government agencies nationwide.

Participants will learn how cooperative procurement programs work and how they can be utilized or developed in their area. Specific information of the legal aspects of cooperative purchasing will be covered.

Learning objectives:

Participants will be able to describe and understand the cooperative procurement process.

Participants will be able to identify the types of laws that impact their ability to use the cooperative procurement process in their state and locality.

Participants will understand how to develop regional cooperative contract opportunities and how to utilize national cooperative contract opportunities.

Participants will be able to identify specific national cooperative programs and examples of the types of products and services available through them.

Crosby Grindle, MPA

Crosby Grindle is the President of Cooperative Services, LLC and is on the Board of Directors for the Fire and Emergency Manufacturers and Services Association (FEMSA). He consults for Sourcewell, where he leads their public safety cooperative procurement initiative. He recently served as the President of NPPGov, a national cooperative public procurement program and served on the Board of Directors for the National Cooperative Procurement Partners (NCPP).

Previously, he has held several leadership positions in public safety association management including Director of Professional Development for the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC). His local government career began in the fire service where he served as a chief officer and project manager for city administration.

Crosby received a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree from the University of Virginia, a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from Virginia Tech and completed the four-year National Fire Academy Executive Fire Officer program.