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American Planning Association Exam AICP Topic 4 Question 22 Discussion

Actual exam question for American Planning Association's American Institute of Certified Planners exam
Question #: 22
Topic #: 4
[All American Institute of Certified Planners Questions]

Scenario: Negative Comments about Consultant Work

At a recent national planning conference, you hear some very negative things about the quality of work done for clients by a well known consulting planning firm. Some of the comments are from people who may not have first-hand information At least one of the critical statements was made directly by a former client The firm, by coincidence, has now submitted a proposal to do work for your community. You call all of the references supplied by the consultant They check out fine. What should you do next?

Ethical Issues: How do you make sure that you don't pass on gossip, but do respond to legitimate issues affecting foe expenditure of public dollars?

Action Alternatives:

1. You have checked the references and they were fine. The folks you talked to are reasonable and had direct knowledge of the consultant's work. You do not want to appear to be looking to make trouble for yourself or anyone else You decide no further action is necessary.

2. When spending public money, you have a responsibility to make sure that the public will get the best value. This requires you to be zealous in determining whether there are any reasons for not hiring the consulting firm. After all, consulting firms do not ever list clients who they think might give them a bad reference. You call for references checking with names not on the list provided by the firm.

3. Other

Commentary: Negative Comments About Consultant Work

Code Citations:

C .1 A planner must protect and enhance the integrity of the profession and must be responsible in criticism of the profession

C .2 A planner must accurately represent the qualifications, views, and findings of colleagues.

C .3 A planner who reviews the work of other professionals must do so in a fair, considerate, professional, and equitable manner

Show Suggested Answer Hide Answer
Suggested Answer: A

You want to be fair in your treatment of a colleague while at the same time making sure that you do not engage a consultant who will not be able to fulfill the requirements of the professional services agreement.

Alternative 1 saves you work, but ignores the fact that you have information which affects your confidence in one of the proposers You would not be in violation of the Code by doing nothing because you would have followed all of your community's standard procedures for hiring However, you would have failed to be attentive to the apparitional intent of the Code.

Alternative 2 would be the most desirable and is most consistent with the Code requirement to fairly treat the views of a colleague In this case you wish to treat fairly the views of those who have disparaged the consultant as well as the view of the consultant him or herself Unless you have specifically stated in your RFP that the only references you will check are those provided by the consultant, you are free to seek out additional information. To be fair, you should mention to the consultant that you will be checking with other colleagues. If you have major unresolved issues as a result of further checking, the consultant should be given an opportunity to respond.


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