RE: Oh FFS
As a PM with both public and private sector PM experience, I can vouch for the fact that the Public sector rules are torture, even when applied correctly. However I personally do feel that the "actual rules" do need to be there for public accountability, despite my frequent cursing.
Unfortunately, I have met too many "procurement managers" in LA's who appear to only have a passing aquaintance with the legal requirements.
Private Sector procurement is quicker and cheaper, as it has less controls and audit requirements.
Having run an LA GIS team, my imediate response would be to drop a copy of the Master Services Agreement on procurement officers desk, and ask them which bit of the nationally negioated agreement they would like to amend.
So, your not alone, I have been at meetings where the Procurement bod wasstill trying to "correct" a senior solicitor in the council as to what rules are! (at that point we where down to actually quoting sections of legislation and SI's)