GLRO16-24 Tactile Voting Device Procurement

Type of decision: 
GLRO decision
Date signed: 
04 April 2016
Decision by: 
Jeff Jacobs, Head of Paid Service

Executive summary

There is a statutory requirement for the provision of tactile voting devices, which enable voters who are blind or partially sighted to vote without any need for assistance, to be available at each polling place for each of the Election contests to be held in May 2016. 



That the GLRO approves:

1-    Subject to the receipt of an acceptable quotation, the expenditure of up to a maximum of £60,000 and the award of a contract to PakFlatt (UK) Ltd for the supply of Tactile Voting devices for use with Constituency London Assembly member, the London Wide Assembly Member and the Mayoral ballot papers . The requirement will be for up to 3,000 Tactile Voting Devices to be supplied for each contest ballot paper, those for the Mayoral and London Member contests being standard for all Constituencies. The total requirement will be for a total of 9,000 units; and 
2-    A related exemption from the requirements of section 3.6 of the GLA ‘s Contracts and Funding code there being a limited number of suppliers in the marketplace.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

There is a requirement to supply the following related items of equipment at each polling place to be used at the London Mayoral and Assembly elections to be held on 5 May 2016. 

The provision of Tactile voting devices at each polling place is a statutory requirement (GLA Elections Rules 2007, Constituency Member Election Rules 28, London Member Election Rules 29, Mayoral Election Rules 28): “The CRO must provide each polling station with a device for enabling voters who are blind or partially sighted to vote without any need for assistance from the presiding officer or any companion within the meaning of rule 40.”

Officers acknowledge that section 3.6 of the GLA’s Contracts and Funding Code (Code) requires that three or more written quotations are sought for services with values between £5,000.00 and £125,000.00. However, section 5 of the Code also provides that an exemption from this requirement may be approved where there are a limited number of suitable suppliers.   

Officers have established through research into patents held by suppliers in the market that Pakflatt Ltd is the only suitable supplier in the market to meet our requirements because it holds a patent in the design of tactile voting devices and as such is the sole supplier.

Accordingly, there are no other suppliers in the market and officers are of the view that it would have been an Inefficient use of London Elects’ resources to conduct an advertised tender exercise as required by section 3.6 of the GLA ‘s Contracts and Funding code.

As a result Pakflatt Ltd will be asked to quote for the design, manufacture and supply of tactile voting devices for use with Constituency Member, London Member and Mayoral ballot papers.

Objectives and expected outcomes

Boroughs have been consulted in reference to the unit requirements for each polling place. These supplies are required for the conduct of the elections and central purchasing secures the most economic procurement. With reference to risk management, supplies will be ordered in ample time for the goods to be delivered to the boroughs well ahead of their need for deployment.


Financial comments

This decision is seeking a request of expenditure up to £60,000 to appoint PakFlatt Ltd as a supplier for tactile voting devices. 

The contract costs are estimated at £60,000 and are to be contained within the Election budget.

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