ACCORD and Morrison are aiming to take over a number ofcapital works deals from North Lanarkshire Council's direct labour organisation.
Scottish secretary Donald Dewar ordered the DLO to close last year after it ran up multimillion-pound losses on badly priced roads and housing maintenance contracts let under compulsory competitive tendering.
The council is now talking to private firms about taking over services currently provided by the DLO. Up for grabs are contracts for windows, roads and lighting, property maintenance and gas.
A council spokesman said: 'We are still at the stage of preparing for public private partnerships to try and deliver on a number of capital services that the DLO isalready providing.
'We have had approaches from firms and hope to identify preferred partners within two to three months, with a view to starting no later than December 31, 2000.'
Morrison may bid with facilities management outfit ServiceTeam. A Morrison spokesman said: 'When we know more, we will know how to structure our bid.'
The Lanarkshire job is a rematch for Accord and Morrison. Both faced each other earlier this year in a similar scenario to take over Norwich City Council's DLO.
Accord won but last month the council dumped the firm because it considered its bid was 'notaffordable'. Morrison has been brought in to replace Accord.