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Last reviewed December 2023

Minnesota Issue Guide
Professional/Technical Contracts (P/T Contracts)

This guide is compiled by staff at the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library on a topic of interest to state legislators. It introduces the topic and points to sources for further research. It is not intended to be exhaustive.

Policymakers have an ongoing interest in how state agencies use contracts to obtain professional/technical services. The quest for accountability has led to many reports over the years about the extent of use of Professional/Technical contracts (P/T contracts). The resources listed below are arranged to answer the following questions:

How do I find information on the Professional/Technical Contract process generally?

The Materials Management Division of the Department of Administration provides information on the Professional/Technical Services process. This source does not include information on individual contracts, but there are contacts for further information in the agencies: State Agency P/T Contract Coordinators.

These reports are evaluations of the process:

Where can I find information on individual P/T contracts, or lists of all of them?

Approved Professional/Technical Contracts and Amendments. (Required by Minnesota Statutes, section 16C.08, subdivision 4(a)(b).)

The annual fiscal year reports from the Department of Administration are archived by the Library. (The agency's database is not publicly searchable.) Monthly reports are kept until the annual accumulation arrives. The annual accumulation is arranged in four sections: approved contract amounts by department; approved contracts by department; approved contracts by vendor; and approved single source contracts by department. Reports since 2005 are online and in print in the Legislative Library. Earlier Department of Administration lists, available in print in the Legislative Reference Library:

  • Activity Report. Minnesota Department of Administration, July 1993-December 2004. (HD3861.U62 M579)
  • Contractual Services Report. Minnesota Department of Administration, April 1986-October 1991. (HD3861.U62 M577)
  • Contractual Services Non-State Employees. Minnesota Department of Administration, June 1977-1989. (Example report from September 1981) (HD3861.U62 M576)

Reports on Completed Professional and Technical Services Contracts. (HD3861.U62 M59) (Required by Minnesota Statutes, section 16C.08, subdivision 4(c).)

Upon completion of a contract over $25,000 (prior to 7/1/11 that amount was $50,000), agencies submit a report, summarizing the purpose of the contract, stating the amount spent on the contract, and including a written performance evaluation of the work done under the contract. These are also known as Vendor Performance Evaluations and are available in print since 1996 in the Library. Since March, 2009, many reports are available online from the Department of Administration.

Reports on Professional and Technical Services Contracts. 1995-. (Required by Minnesota Statutes, section 3.225, subdivision 5.) (HD3861.U62 M572) (Monthly lists of all contracts for professional or technical services executed in the previous month are required of the House of Representatives, Senate, Legislative Coordinating Commission, and any group under the Commission. In print in the Legislative Library.)

Reports resulting from individual contracts. (Required by Minnesota Statutes, section 3.225, subdivision 6.) One copy of any reports written as a result of a P/T contract should be delivered to the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library. To find them, search the Library's catalog by topic or contact a librarian (651-296-8338, Email.)

How much money is being spent on P/T contracts?

Professional Technical Services Contract Report. Minnesota Management and Budget. (Required by Minnesota Statutes, section 16A.11 Subd. 3(c)) Part of the Biennial Budget documents, each report includes the total cost of professional and technical service contracts for the prior biennium and the projected costs of those contracts for the current and upcoming biennium.

The cost of each contract and amended contracts are listed in the Approved Professional/Technical Contracts and Amendments documents.

Additional reports

Professional and Technical Contract Expenditure Reduction by Agency. Minnesota Management and Budget, 2009. (Required by Laws of Minnesota 2008, chapter 363, article 13, section 21.) (HD3861.U62 M57). (State agencies, to the extent possible, are required to achieve a reduction in expenditures through reduced use of professional and technical contracts. This document reports the reductions achieved by each agency.)

Reports on Professional Technical Services Contracts. 1998-. (Required by Minnesota Statutes, section 43A.047.) (HD3861.U62 M57). (Executive agencies, including the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, are required to demonstrate that they cannot use available staff before hiring outside consultants or services. The reports are submitted by Minnesota state agencies to the Senate Finance and House Ways and Means Committees. Only a few agencies sent these reports to the Legislative Library.)

Reports on Waivers from the State Moratorium on Professional Technical Contracts. Minnesota Department of Administration, 2002. (Required by Laws of Minnesota 2002, chapter 220, article 10, section 37.) (HD3861.U62 M61). (Reports on waivers from the moratorium were required by the Minnesota Department of Administration. Only one was submitted to the Library.)

Responses to Report on Professional Technical Services. Minnesota Department of Administration, 2000. (Required by Laws of Minnesota 1999, chapter 250.) (HD3861.U62 M57). (Agencies were required to report to the Department of Administration about their implementation of Minnesota Statutes chapter 43A.047. The Department combined the information and reported to the Legislature. There was only one report done before the report requirement was repealed. (Laws of Minnesota 2001, First Special Session chapter 10, section 51.)

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