It seems that a lot of producers are using vendors to distribute their shows.
Couldn't you get around the requirements by showing a couple of quotes from the
vendors showing that the prices for shows don't vary much?
From: Jay <jayheinz@...
Sent: Mon, February 28, 2011 10:26:25 AM
Subject: [fulldome] leasing questions
I'm posting this for Richard McColman. Please respond directly to him at
Being part of a state university and being governed by state government
purchasing rules, we find ourselves in a bit of an interesting situation:
The typical fulldome show lease for our size dome is in the $10k-plus range.
During the first year of fulldome operations, we were able to use private-source
dollars - dollars that aren't governed by the same degree of bureaucratic
restrictions as are state-governed funds. Soon we will come to the end of the
private funding source for leasing shows, at which point we will be mandated to
use funds that are governed by strict government rules and guidelines. State
purchasing guidelines require that any transaction over $5k must be put out to
competitive bid if there are multiple sources. The only exception to this is if
we can write up a justification for a sole source purchase. However, he terms
of acceptance of these sole source justifications are very strict. We've
typically been acquiring shows so far by going through our fulldome system
vendor, who acts as an agent for a host of show producers. Since there are
multiple "lease agents" in the form of system vendors, this puts us in the
rather odd position of perhaps having to put leases out to competitive bid in
cases where the producer won't lease shows directly to theaters.
It's my impression that the system vendors / show lease agents derive the same
identical pricing scales from terms established by the show producers. Or am I
mistaken about that?
If all show producers were to also distribute shows to theaters directly, then
we might be able to simply go directly to the producer for the lease deal. But,
rightly or wrongly, my impression is that not all show producers will lease
their shows directly to theaters. We at Morehead certainly don't lease our
shows directly, as we prefer to avoid the logistical hassle of doing so.
1) Are we at Morehead a one-of-a-kind oddball by not leasing our shows directly
2) If not, are there any other theaters in government-purchase-guideline
situations such as ours?
3) If any of you are in such a situation, how have you dealt with the sort of
scenario such as we find ourselves?
4) Is there verifiable information that I can take to our "gods of purchasing"
indicating that the exact same deal from a dollar/terms standpoint will be the
result if we go through a competitive bid scenario with multiple system vendors
/ leasing agents, rather than directly to the originating producer (in the
situation where the originating producer won't lease their shows directly to
Richard McColman, Fulldome Theater Manager
Morehead Planetarium & Science Center