672 Purchasing Procedures / Competitive Pricing
Formal Bidding: Bidding is defined as a formal process where sealed written prices are received based upon written specification and is normally used for construction, additions, remodeling or renovation projects.
When utilizing formal bid procedures, the Board shall request bids be published in the appropriate publications to obtain the best number of bidders for the School District. Administration will determine if Bid Bonds and Performance Bonds are required. Requests for such bids may also be sent directly to local vendors and/or prospective bidders known to the School District. Bids shall be opened in public at the time and location listed in the specifications. The School Board shall approve final acceptance of the bid.
Competitive Pricing / Quotations: Bidding is defined as competitive pricing when a number of inquiries of vendor price (quotations) are made via phone, fax, e-mail, or written communication. Quotations may require a specific due date. No evaluation or vendor access shall be allowed until after the due date. Quotations received from a vendor shall not be disclosed to other parties until a decision to purchase has been made or until a purchase order has been issued.
Where quality and service are relatively equal, price will be the determining factor. In awarding purchases or contracts for services, approval will be based upon:
• Quality of the product, service and warranty
• Service, delivery, and maintenance of product
• Suitability of the product or service
• Conformance to specifications
• Past performance to the District
• Vendor reliability
• Payment terms
Formal Bidding shall take place for any project or item where the expected cost shall exceed $25,000. The bid shall be advertised and the lowest acceptable and qualified bidder shall be awarded the purchase contract. The school board shall officially approve and endorse all such contract awards made on behalf of the school district.
Formal bidding is not required for the following:
Instructional media and related materials. (textbooks, software, books, tapes, films, workbooks, periodicals, and educational materials directly linked to a specific district curriculum.)
Replacement parts for existing equipment.
Cooperative agreements with other school districts.
Maintenance contracts where the maintenance is to be performed on a routine or as-needed basis on special equipment (i.e. boilers or manufacturers specific equipment.)
Services renewed annually unless requested by board action or recommendation.
Professional services unless requested by board action or recommendation.
Purchases in excess of $3000 and not subject to formal bidding shall be competitively bid.
A quotation is defined as an inquiry of vendor price via phone, fax, email or written communication.
On purchases less than $3000, competitive pricing is encouraged but not required.
Requirements for purchases with an estimated total between $3000 to $25,000 are as follows:
a) A minimum of three informal solicitations shall be obtained.
b) A notation should be made if three formal solicitations cannot be made.
c) Each department is responsible for obtaining, documenting and retaining solicitation information and attach it to their copy of the signed and approved purchase order.
d) Such documentation shall be available for the current and subsequent three years.
Levels of Purchase Approval:
Purchases less than $3000 shall be approved for content by the school principal, head of food service, head of buildings and grounds, director of
special education / pupil services in writing PRIOR to the order being placed.
The business office staff shall approve the purchase request based on budget availability and request budget transfers as necessary.
Depending upon the contents of the request, it shall be approved by the grant administrator, special education coordinator or director of curriculum as necessary.
A purchase order number shall be assigned to each order or a blanket purchase order should exist for routine purchases from local vendors.
The school district business manager and the curriculum coordinator shall approve all purchases greater than $3000. Proof of "due diligence of competitive pricing should be available for any such order." No order greater than $3000 should be placed without the express written approval of the district administration PRIOR to placement of the order except in the most extreme emergency situations.
Purchases that require a formal bid shall be approved at the next available board meeting.
On rare occasion, purchases may be necessary to deter or eliminate damage or harm to school property or personnel. In such situations, the individual staff member may act promptly and supercede these procedures to immediately correct the immediate situation. However, subsequent to the act, the above guidelines should be followed to perform necessary purchase documentation and receive the appropriate approval for their action.
Prohibitions related to purchases
No board member, officer, or employee of this district or their families shall be interested financially in any contract entered into or purchase made by the Board.
No personal purchases may be made using the school district’s name.
No purchases of items shall be made for sale to employees whatsoever except for meals, services (professional or safety training for example not provided by the school district) and such specialized materials and appliances as may be required for the safety or health of the employees.
State law prohibits any public officer or employee to negotiate, bid for or enter into a contract in which he/she has a private pecuniary interest, direct or indirect, if at the same time he/she is authorized or required by law to participate in his/her official capacity in the making of that contract or to perform in exercise of discretion on his/her part.
Under state law, no public official or employee may use his/her public position or office to obtain financial gain or anything of substantial value for the private benefit of him/herself or his/her immediate family, or any organization with which he/she is associated.
Legal Ref: Section 66.949 Wisconsin Statutes 118.12, 120.12(24), 120.13, 120.44, 946.12, 946.13