Purchasing Basics

The primary method for making a purchase at Sul Ross State University is through the purchase order system. Purchases may also be made through the purchasing card or the general credit card programs.

Important Things to Know | RUSH Orders | Special Circumstances | Non-Compliant Purchases

 Important Things to Know

  • The university has a policy of centralized purchasing.
  • The Purchasing Department, with a few exceptions, has sole authority for the negotiation and purchase of goods and services for the university.
  • A purchase requisition (the document created by the department) does not authorize a purchase.
  • A purchase order (the document created by Purchasing) must be issued before an order is placed.
  • Anyone placing an order without a purchase order may be held personally liable for payment.
  • Contracts can be signed only by the President, Vice President for Business Affairs, Director of Purchasing and the Senior Buyer.
  • Purchases of $5,000 or more are subject to competitive bidding. Purchasing will solicit bids after a requistion has been submitted.
  • Purchases must not be divided in an attempt to circumvent the bid laws and rules.
  • Purchases made with grant funds must follow the university's policies and procedures or the grantor's, whichever is more restrictive.
  • Payment to vendors cannot be made until receipt of goods or services has been verified.

 

RUSH Orders

Purchase orders are created on a first-come, first-serve basis, however; Purchasing can quickly issue rush orders if needed. To receive RUSH processing, enter a requisition online and get the appropriate approvals.  Call Purchasing with the requisition number and request RUSH processing. Purchasing will immediately process the requisition and create a purchase order.

Special Circumstances

  • Items purchased from Texas Industries for the Blind and Handicapped, Texas Correctional Industries, Department of Information Resources contracts and other state or approved cooperative contracts are exempt from bidding. A purchase order is still required when purchasing from these contracts.
  • Proprietary purchases may be exempt from bid requirements. If your purchase is over $5,000 and you are limited to one manufacturer, one product or one vendor, a proprietary purchase form must be sent to Purchasing when the requisition is created. Purchasing will determine if a proprietary purchase exemption can be applied.
  • An emergency purchase is "a purchase of goods or services so badly needed that an agency will suffer financial or operational damage unless they are secured immediately." Emergency purchases are rare and based on unforeseeable circumstances, not poor planning. If there is a legitimate emergency requiring a purchase outside of the normal channels, contact Purchasing to discuss the proper exemption procedure.

Non-Compliant Purchases

If you place an order, sign a contract or represent to a vendor that you have authority to obligate university funds AND you do not have the authority outlined above, you may be held personally liable for payment to the vendor. Before a non-compliant purchase can be paid, a written explanation for the purchase and a vice president's approval are required. This delays payment to the vendor who has provided goods/services in good faith. Please do not penalize your vendor by making non-compliant purchases.