SECTION C: BUSINESS AND SUPPORT SERVICES
- SECTION CA | Appropriations and Revenue Sources
- SECTION CAA | Appropriations
- SECTION CAB | Bond Issue
- SECTION CAC | Time Warrants
- SECTION CAD | Certificates of Indebtedness
- SECTION CAE | Loans and Notes
- SECTION CAF | Ad Valorem Taxes
- SECTION CAG | Investments
- SECTION CAH | Sale, Trade or Lease of College Property
- SECTION CAH.1 | Sale, Trade or Lease of College Property
- SECTION CAI | Grants, Funds and Donations
- SECTION CAJ | Rentals and Service Charges
- SECTION CB | Depository of Funds
- SECTION CC | Annual Operating Budget
- SECTION CD | Accounting
- SECTION CD.1 | Accounting
- SECTION CD.2 | Cash Handling Procedures
- SECTION CD.3 | Fixed Assets
- SECTION CD.4 | Financial Reports and Statements
- SECTION CD.5 | Accounting Inventories
- SECTION CD.6 | Accounting Audits
- SECTION CD.7 | Accountability
- SECTON CD.8 | Travel Procedures
- SECTION CD.9 | Taxation of Gifts, Prizes, and Awards to Employees
- SECTION CE | Purchasing and Acquisitions
- SECTION CF | Safety Program
- SECTION CG | Site Management
- SECTION CH | Equipment, Supply and Records Management
- SECTION CI | Transportation Management
- SECTION CJ | Insurance and Annuities
- SECTION CK | Facilities Planning and Standards
- SECTION CL | College District Auxiliary Enterprises
- SECTION CM | Technology Resources
- SECTION CN | Information Security
- SECTION CO | Intellectual Property
BUSINESS AND SUPPORT SERVICES
PURCHASING AND ACQUISTIONS
The provisions of Education Code Chapter 44, Subchapter B, relating to the purchase of goods and services under contract by a school district apply to the purchase of goods and services under contract by a community college district. Purchases made with federal funds are subject to Uniform Grant Guidance (UGG) requirements for procurement. These requirements can be found in 2CFR Sub-section 200-317-200.326.
When grant awards are used to make purchases, the more restrictive procurement policy listed in our local policy or the specific grant agreement will be followed.
The procurement of equipment, supplies, and services requires that a purchase requisition be initiated, processed through the appropriate authority and submitted to a fiscal officer for action. Once the purchase requisition is received in the Purchasing Office and funds availability are certified; a purchase order number will be assigned. When the merchandise or service is received, the receiving copy must be signed and dated and returned to Accounts Payable so that payment can be made to the vendor.
Education Code Chapter 44, Subchapter B does not apply to a purchase, acquisition, or license of library goods and services for a library operated as a part of a community college district. “Library goods and services” has the meaning assigned by Education Code 130.0101(a).
The college may adopt rules and procedures for the acquisition of goods and services.
Notwithstanding any other provision of the Education Code, or UGG requirements for procurement, in the event of a catastrophe, emergency, or natural disaster affecting a college district, the District President or the Vice President of Finance and Administration may contract for the replacement or repair of college district equipment under Education Code Chapter 44, Subchapter B if emergency replacement or repair is necessary for the health and safety of college district students and staff.
Subject to legal limitations, a college district may agree or contract with another agency for the provision of necessary and authorized services and resources.
PROCUREMENT WITH GRANT FUNDS
Procurement of goods and services made with federal funds will have applicable procurement rules and procedures followed.
Purchases made with federal funds are subject to Uniform Grant Guidance (UGG) requirements for procurement. These requirements can be found in 2CFR Sub-section 200.317.200.326.
When grant award funds are used to make purchases, the more restrictive procurement policy listed in our local policy or the specific grant agreement will be followed.
PROCUREMENT WITH INSTITUTIONAL FUNDS
Procurement of goods and services (12 month aggregate) under $10,000 – collect must solicit at least one quote.
Procurement of goods and services (12 month aggregate) between $10,000 and $50,000 – college must solicit at least three formal written quotes or may follow formal bidding process if desired to achieve better value for the district. made with federal funds will have applicable procurement rules and procedures followed.
All college district contracts for the purchase of goods and services, except contracts for the purchase of produce or vehicle fuel, valued at $50,000 or more in the aggregate for each 12-month period, shall be made by the method that provides the best value for the college district:
- Competitive bidding for services other than construction services.
- Competitive sealed proposals for services other than construction services.
- A request for proposals for services other than construction services.
- Interlocal contract.
- The reverse auction procedure as defined by Government Code 2155.062(d).
- The formation of a political subdivision corporation under Local Government Code 304.001.
The college will utilize the manner approved by the Board of Trustees when procuring the construction manager employed by the college, construction at risk, design, build, or other appropriate construction method.
AGGREGATE PURCHASES SHALL NOT BE DIVIDED TO CIRCUMVENT PROCUREMENT REQUIREMENTS. PROCUREMENTS THAT SPLIT OR OTHERWISE BYPASS PURCHASING LAWS WILL BE DISALLOWED.
In awarding a contract, the college district shall consider:
- The purchase price.
- The reputation of the vendor and of the vendor’s goods and services.
- The quality of the vendor’s goods or services.
- The extent to which the goods or services meet the district’s needs.
- The vendor’s past relationship with the district.
- The total long-term cost to the district to acquire the goods or services.
- For a contract that is not for goods and services, other than goods and services, related to telecommunications and information services, building construction and maintenance, or instructional materials, whether the vendor or the vendor’s ultimate parent company or majority owner has its principal place of business in this state or employs at least 500 persons in this state.
- Any other relevant factor specifically listed in the request for bids or proposals.
- In awarding a contract by competitive sealed bid under Education Code 44.031, a college district that has its central administrative office located in a municipality with a population of less than 250,000 may consider a bidder’s principal place of business in the manner provided by Local Government Code 271.9051. This provision does not apply to the purchase of telecommunications services or information services, as those terms are defined by 47 U.S.C. 153.
The factors listed above are the only criteria that may be considered by the college district in its decision to award a contract. The college district may apply one, some, or all of the criteria, but it may not completely ignore them.
This requirement shall not apply to a contract involving federal funds. A college district shall rely on information published by the comptroller in evaluating the bids of a nonresident bidder.
The college may, by resolution, establish regulations permitting the college district to refuse to enter into a contract or other transaction with a person indebted to the college district. The college district may refuse to award a contract to or enter into a transaction with an apparent low bidder or successful proposer that is indebted to the college district.
The term “person” includes an individual, sole proprietorship, corporation, nonprofit corporation, partnership, joint venture, limited liability company, and any other entity that seeks to enter into a contract or other transaction with the college district requiring board approval.
A governmental entity, including a college district, may not award a governmental contract to a nonresident bidder unless the nonresident underbids the lowest bid submitted by a responsible resident bidder by an amount that is not less than the greater of the amount by which a resident bidder would be required to underbid a nonresident bidder to obtain a comparable contract in the state in which the nonresident's principal place of business is located, or the amount by which a resident bidder would be required to underbid the nonresident bidder to obtain a comparable contract in the state in which a majority of the manufacturing relating to the contract will be performed.
This requirement does not apply to a contract involving federal funds. A governmental entity shall use the information published by the comptroller in the Texas Register in evaluating the bids of a nonresident bidder.
Gov't Code 2252.001–.004
CONTRACTS VALUED AT OR ABOVE $1 MILLION
This section applies to an entity that is not a governmental body that executes a contract with a governmental body that:
- Has a stated expenditure of at least $1 million in public funds for the purchase of goods or services by the governmental body; or
- Results in the expenditure of at least $1 million in public funds for the purchase of goods or services by the governmental body in a fiscal year of the governmental body.
Gov't Code 552.371(a)
A contract described above must require a contracting entity to:
- Preserve all contracting information related to the contract as provided by the records retention requirements applicable to the governmental body for the duration of the contract;
- Promptly provide to the governmental body any contracting information related to the contract that is in the custody or possession of the entity on request of the governmental body; and
- On completion of the contract, either:
- Provide at no cost to the governmental body all contracting information related to the contract that is in the custody or possession of the entity; or
- Preserve the contracting information related to the contract as provided by the records retention requirements applicable to the governmental body.
Gov't Code 552.372(a)
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF PIA REQUIREMENTS
Unless Government Code 552.374(c) applies, a bid for a contract described above and the contract must include the following statement: "The requirements of Subchapter J, Chapter 552, Government Code, may apply to this (include "bid" or "contract" as applicable) and the contractor or vendor agrees that the contract can be terminated if the contractor or vendor knowingly or intentionally fails to comply with a requirement of that subchapter." Gov't Code 552.372(b)
BID ACCEPTANCE AND CONTRACT AWARD PROHIBITED
A governmental body may not accept a bid for a contract described by Government Code 552.371 or award the contract to an entity that the governmental body has determined has knowingly or intentionally failed to comply with Government Code Chapter 552, Subchapter J in a previous bid or contract described by that section unless the governmental body determines and documents that the entity has taken adequate steps to ensure future compliance with the requirements of Subchapter J. Gov't Code 552.372(c)
TERMINATION OF CONTRACT
A governmental body may terminate a contract described above if:
- The governmental body provides notice under Government Code 552.373 to the entity that is party to the contract;
- The contracting entity does not cure the violation in the period prescribed by Government Code 552.373;
- The governmental body determines that the contracting entity has intentionally or knowingly failed to comply with a requirement of Subchapter J; and
- The governmental body determines that the entity has not taken adequate steps to ensure future compliance with the requirements of Subchapter J. An entity has taken adequate steps to ensure future compliance with this subchapter if the entity produces contracting information requested by the governmental body that is in the custody or possession of the entity not later than the tenth business day after the date the governmental body makes the request and the entity establishes a records management program to enable the entity to comply with Subchapter J.
Gov't Code 552.374(a)–(b)
A governmental body may not terminate a contract under this section if the contract is related to the purchase or underwriting of a public security, the contract is or may be used as collateral on a loan, or the contract's proceeds are used to pay debt service of a public security or loan. Gov't Code 552.374(c)
Contract with Person Indebted to College District
The board of trustees of a college district by resolution may establish regulations permitting the college district to refuse to enter into a contract or other transaction with a person indebted to the college district. It is not a violation of Education Code Chapter 44, Subchapter B for a college district, under the adopted regulations, to refuse to award a contract to or enter into a transaction with an apparent low bidder or successful proposer that is indebted to the college district.
The term "person" includes an individual, sole proprietorship, corporation, nonprofit corporation, partnership, joint venture, limited liability company, and any other entity that seeks to enter into a contract or other transaction with the college district requiring approval by the board.
Education Code 44.044
A governmental entity may not enter into a governmental contract with a company that is identified on a list prepared and maintained by the comptroller under Government Code 806.051, 807.051, or 2252.153.
"Governmental contract" means a contract awarded by a governmental entity for general construction, an improvement, a service, or a public works project or for a purchase of supplies, materials, or equipment. The term includes a contract to obtain a professional or consulting service subject to Government Code Chapter 2254.
Gov't Code 2252.001(3), .152
COMPANIES THAT BOYCOTT ISRAEL
This section applies only to a contract that:
- Is between a governmental entity and a company with ten or more full-time employees; and
- Has a value of $100,000 or more that is to be paid wholly or partly from public funds of the governmental entity.
A governmental entity may not enter into a contract with a company for goods or services unless the contract contains a written verification from the company that it does not boycott Israel and will not boycott Israel during the term of the contract.
"Company" has the meaning assigned by Government Code 808.001, except that the term does not include a sole proprietorship.
Gov't Code 2270.001(2), .002
DISCLOSURE OF INTERESTED PARTIES
A governmental entity or state agency, including a college district, may not enter into a contract with a business entity that requires an action or vote by the governing body of the entity or agency before the contract may be signed, has a value of at least $1 million, or is for services that would require a person to register as a lobbyist under Government Code Chapter 305, with certain exceptions, unless the business entity, in accordance with Government Code 2252.908 and rules adopted by the Texas Ethics Commission, submits a disclosure of interested parties to the governmental entity or state agency at the time the business entity submits the signed contract to the governmental entity or state agency. [See GL] Gov't Code 2252.908
DISCLOSURES BY PURCHASING PERSONNEL
Before a state agency, including a college district, may award a major contract, a contract that has a value of at least $1 million, for the purchase of goods or services to a business entity, each of the state agency's purchasing personnel working on the contract must disclose in writing to the administrative head of the state agency any relationship the purchasing personnel is aware about that the employee has with an employee, a partner, a major stockholder, a paid consultant with a contract with the business entity the value of which exceeds $25,000, or other owner of the business entity who is within a degree described by Government Code 573.002, the third degree by consanguinity or within the second degree by affinity of the purchasing employee. The state auditor shall develop a form for use in reporting a specified relationship.
"Purchasing personnel" means an employee of a state agency who makes decisions on behalf of the state agency or recommendations regarding contract terms or conditions on a major contract, who is to be awarded a major contract, preparation of a solicitation for a major contract, or evaluation of a bid or proposal.
Gov't Code 2262.001(4), .004
Notice of the time by when and place where the bids or proposals, or the responses to a request for qualifications, will be received and opened shall be published in the county in which the district's central administrative office is located, once a week for at least two weeks before the deadline for receiving bids, proposals, or responses to a request for qualifications. If there is not a newspaper in that county, the advertising shall be published in a newspaper in the county nearest the county seat of the county in which the district's central administrative office is located. In a two-step procurement process, the time and place where the second-step bids, proposals, or responses will be received are not required to be published separately. Education Code 44.031(g)
ELECTRONIC BIDS OR PROPOSALS
A college district may receive bids or proposals under Education Code Chapter 44 through electronic transmission if the board of trustees of the college district adopts rules to ensure the identification, security, and confidentiality of electronic bids or proposals and to ensure that the electronic bids or proposals remain effectively unopened until the proper time.
An electronic bid or proposal is not required to be sealed. A provision of Education Code Chapter 44 that applies to a sealed bid or proposal applies to a bid or proposal received through electronic transmission in accordance with the rules adopted by the board.
Education Code 44.0313
The purchasing requirements of Education Code 44.031 do not apply to a contract for professional services rendered, including services of an architect, attorney, certified public accountant, engineer, or fiscal agent.
The college district may, at its option, contract for professional services rendered by a financial consultant or a technology consultant in the manner provided by Government Code 2254.003, in lieu of the methods provided by Education Code 44.031.
Education Code 44.031(f)
A governmental entity, including a college district, may not select a provider of professional services or a group or association of providers or award a contract for the services on the basis of competitive bids submitted for the contract or for the services, but shall make the selection and award on the basis of demonstrated competence and qualifications to perform the services and for a fair and reasonable price.
"Professional services" means services:
- Within the scope of the practice, as defined by state law, of accounting, architecture, landscape architecture, land surveying, medicine, optometry, professional engineering, real estate appraising, or professional nursing;
- Provided in connection with the professional employment or practice of a person who is licensed or registered as a certified public accountant, an architect, a landscape architect, a land surveyor, a physician, including a surgeon, an optometrist, a professional engineer, a state certified or state licensed real estate appraiser, or a registered nurse; or
- Provided by a person lawfully engaged in interior design, regardless of whether the person is registered as an interior designer under Occupations Code Chapter 1053.
Gov't Code 2254.002, .003(a) [See also CM]
An interlocal contract between a governmental entity and a purchasing cooperative may not be used to purchase engineering or architectural services. Gov't Code 791.011(h)
PROFESSIONAL SERVICE CONTRACT EXCEEDING $14,000
A state agency, including a college district and other institutions of higher education, shall provide written notice to the LBB of a contract for professional services, other than a contract for physician or optometric services, if the amount of the contract, including an amendment, modification, renewal, or extension of the contract, exceeds $14,000. The notice must be on a form prescribed by the LBB and filed not later than the tenth day after the date the agency enters into the contract. Gov't Code 2254.006
CONTINGENT FEE CONTRACTS FOR LEGAL SERVICES
Government Code Chapter 2254, Subchapter C provisions applicable to a state governmental entity and a political subdivision apply to a contingent fee contract for legal services entered into by a college district. Gov't Code 2254.102(a)
Subchapter C does not apply to a contract for legal services entered into under Tax Code 6.30 or Government Code 1201.027 except that Government Code 2254.1032, 2254.1034, 2254.1036, and 2254.1037 do apply to the contract. Gov't Code 2254.102(e)
If school equipment, a school facility, or a part of a school facility or personal property is destroyed or severely damaged or, as a result of an unforeseen catastrophe or emergency, undergoes major operational or structural failure, and the college determines that the delay posed by the methods provided for in Education Code 44.031 would prevent or substantially impair the conduct of classes or other essential school activities, then contracts for the replacement or repair of the equipment, school facility, or the part of the school facility may be made by methods other than those required by Education Code 44.031.
The college district may acquire computers and computer-related equipment, including computer software, through the Department of Information Resources (DIR) under contracts with the DIR in accordance with Government Code Chapter 2054 or 2157.
PURCHASING USING COMPETITIVE BIDDING
Each college district that solicits bids or proposals from the public for the purchase and/or lease of computer equipment must do so in accordance with applicable rules adopted by the Comptroller pertaining to competitive bidding or competitive sealed proposals.
A public solicitation for the purchase or lease of computer equipment issued by a college district is required to contain the certification to be completed by bidders, in accordance with administrative Code 217.30. If the bidder fails to include the certification, the college district shall reject the related bid and not evaluate it.
All college districts shall include in all bids for the purchase or lease of computer
equipment a special preference for all manufacturers that have a program to recycle
the computer equipment of other manufacturers, which program includes collection events
and manufacturer initiatives to accept computer equipment labeled with another manufacturer’s
brand. The preference may take the form of extra evaluation points or may be the tie-breaking
factor among equal bids.
“Computer equipment” is defined as a desktop or notebook computer and includes a computer monitor or other display device that does not contain a tuner.
AUTOMATED INFORMATION SYSTEM
A college district may purchase an automated information system using the purchasing method described by Government Code 2157.068 for commodity items or a purchasing method designated by the Comptroller to obtain the best value for the state, including a request for offers method. A college district that purchases an item using a method listed above satisfies any state law requiring the college district to seek competitive bids for the purchase of the item.
Compliance with Education Code 44.031 is not required for purchases that are available from only one source, including:
- An item for which competition is precluded because of a patent, copyright, secret process, or monopoly.
- A film, manuscript, or book.
- A utility service, including electricity, gas, or water.
- A captive replacement part or component for equipment.
The sole source exception shall not apply to mainframe data processing equipment and peripheral attachments with a single-item purchase price in excess of $15,000.
A contract for the purchase of insurance is a contract for the purchase of personal property and shall be made in accordance with Education Code 44.031.
The college district may execute an insurance contract for a period longer than 12 months, if the contract contains provisions concerning commitment of current revenue. If the college district executes a multi-year insurance contract, it need not advertise for insurance vendors until the 12-month period during which the college district will be executing a new insurance contract.
The college will not enter into multi-year contracts in excess of five years unless approved by the Vice President of Finance and Administration or the District President.
Except to the extent prohibited by other law and to the extent consistent with Education Code Chapter 44, Subchapter B, a college district may use competitive bidding to select a vendor as authorized.
A college district shall award a competitively bid contract at the bid amount to the bidder offering the best value for the college district. In determining the best value for the college district, the college district is not restricted to considering price alone but may consider any other factors stated in the selection criteria. The selection criteria may include the factors listed in Education Code 44.031(b) [see FACTORS, above]. The selection criteria for items purchased with federal funds can be found at 200 CFR.320.
Except as provided below, Local Government Code Chapter 271, Subchapter B does not apply to a competitive bidding process under this policy.
The formal bidding process requires at least three (3) weeks of time. The originating department must be prepared to supply bid specifications, prospective bidders, award criteria and to work closely with the Director of Budget and Procurement or the Accountant/Procurement Officer in preparation of the bid document. A committee will review responses to bids/proposals and rate them according to the award criteria. The Director of Budget and Procurement will determine the composition of the committee.
The College may use vendors who have contracts with the State of Texas or other board-approved purchasing cooperatives to procure approved items in lieu of the bidding process in accordance with state and federal law. For each 12-month period, the College District shall publish a notice in two successive issues of any newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the school is located, specifying the categories of personal property to be purchased and soliciting the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of vendors that are interested in supplying any of the categories to the College District.
OPENING BIDS OR PROPOSALS
Bids may be opened only by a designated employee of the college district at or in an office of the college district. A bid that has been opened may not be changed for the purpose of correcting an error in the bid price. Local Gov’t Code 271.026
The college shall have the right to reject any and all bids.
The Director of Budget and Procurement or the Accountant/Procurement Officer may request a best and final offer for any procurement opportunities other than sealed bids, including but not limited to Requests for Proposals.
In determining who is a responsible bidder, the college may take into account the safety record of the bidder; of the firm, corporation, partnership, or institution represented by the bidder; or of anyone acting for such firm, corporation, partnership, or institution, provided that:
- The college has adopted a written definition and criteria for accurately determining the safety record of the bidder.
- The college has given notice in the bid specifications that the safety record of a bidder may be considered in determining the bidder’s responsibility.
- The determinations are not arbitrary and capricious.
If the college district receives two or more bids from responsible bidders that are identical, in nature and amount, as the lowest and best bids, it shall select only one bidder from the identical bids.
If only one of the bidders submitting identical bids is a resident of the college district, that bidder shall be selected. If two or more such bidders are residents of the college district, one shall be selected by the casting of lots. In all other cases, one of the identical bids shall be selected by the casting of lots.
The college shall prescribe the manner of casting lots and shall be present when the lots are cast. All qualified bidders or their representatives may be present at the casting of lots.
REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS
The college district shall prepare a request for competitive sealed proposals that includes information that vendors may require to respond to the request. The college district shall state in the request for proposals the selection criteria that will be used in selecting the successful offeror.
In selecting a vendor through competitive sealed proposals as authorized by Education Code 44.031(a)(2), a college district shall follow the procedures prescribed below.
The college district shall receive, publicly open, and read aloud the names of the offerors and, if any are required to be stated, all prices stated in each proposal. Not later than the 45th day after the date on which the proposals are opened, the college district shall evaluate and rank each proposal submitted in relation to the published selection criteria.
The college district shall select the offeror that offers the best value for the college district based on the published selection criteria and on its ranking evaluation. The college district shall first attempt to negotiate a contract with the selected offeror. The college district may discuss with the selected offeror options for a scope or time modification and any price change associated with the modification. If the college district is unable to negotiate a satisfactory contract with the selected offeror, the college district shall, formally and in writing, end negotiations with that offeror and proceed to the next offeror in the order of the selection ranking until a contract is reached or all proposals are rejected.
BEST VALUE DETERMINATION
In determining the best value for the college district, the college district is not restricted to considering price alone but may consider any other factors stated in the selection criteria.
To increase efficiency and effectiveness, a college district may contract or agree with other local governments and with state agencies, including the comptroller, to perform some of its purchasing functions.
An interlocal contract must be authorized by the college and the governing body of each contracting party; must state the purpose, terms, rights, and duties of the contracting parties; and must specify that each party paying for the performance of governmental functions or services shall make those payments from current revenues available to the paying party.
An interlocal contractual payment must be in an amount that fairly compensates the performing party for the services or functions performed under the contract. The terms of interlocal agreements shall remain valid for an indefinite period or until the agreement expires unless the contracted entity or the college board requests they be reevaluated or terminated.
The college district may agree with another local government, including a nonprofit corporation that is created and operated to provide one or more governmental functions and services, or with the state or a state agency, including the comptroller, to purchase goods and services reasonably required for the installation, operation, or maintenance of the goods. Such an agreement may not, however, apply to services provided by firefighters, police officers, or emergency medical personnel.
A college district that purchases goods and services by agreement with another local government or with the state or state agency satisfies the requirement to seek competitive bids for the purchase of goods and services.
"Purchasing cooperative" means a group purchasing organization that governmental entities join as members and the managing entity of which receives fees from members or vendors.
STATE PURCHASING PROGRAM
Purchasing services performed for the college district by the Texas Comptroller shall include:
- The extension of state contract prices to the college district when the Comptroller considers it feasible.
- Solicitation of bids on items desired by the college district if the solicitation is considered feasible by the Comptroller and is desired by the college district.
- Provision of information and technical assistance to the college district about the purchasing program.
The Comptroller may charge the college district its actual costs in providing purchasing services.
COLLEGE DISTRICT REQUIREMENTS
A local government may participate in the purchasing program, including participation in purchases that use the reverse auction procedure, by filing with the comptroller a resolution adopted by the governing body of the local government requesting that the local government be allowed to participate on a voluntary basis, to the extent the comptroller deems feasible, and stating that the local government shall:
- Designate an official to act for the local government in all matters relating to the program, including the purchase of items from the vendor under any contract, and that the governing body will direct the decisions of the representative;
- Be responsible for:
- Submitting requisitions to the comptroller under any contract; or
- Electronically sending purchase orders directly to vendors, or complying with procedures governing a reverse auction purchase and electronically sending to the comptroller reports on actual purchases made under this paragraph that provide the information and are sent at the times required by the comptroller;
- Be responsible for making payment directly to the vendor; and
- Be responsible for the vendor's compliance with all conditions of delivery and quality of the purchased item.
A local government that purchases an item under a state contract or under a reverse auction procedure sponsored by the comptroller satisfies any state law requiring the local government to seek competitive bids for the purchase of the item.
MULTIPLE AWARD CONTRACT SCHEDULE
The Texas State Comptroller shall develop a schedule of multiple award contracts that have been previously awarded using a competitive process by the federal government or any other governmental entity in any state.
The college district may purchase goods or services directly from a vendor under a contract listed on a schedule. An authorized purchase satisfies any requirement of state law relating to competitive bids or proposals and satisfies any applicable requirements of Government Code Chapter 2157.
The price listed for a good or service under a multiple award contract is a price. The college district may negotiate a lower price for goods or services under a contract listed on a schedule.
COOPERATIVE PURCHASING PROGRAM
The college district may participate in a cooperative purchasing program with another local government or a local cooperative organization. If the college district does so, it may sign an agreement with another participating local government or a local cooperative stating that the college district will:
- Designate a person to act on behalf of the college district in all matters relating to the program.
- Make payments to another participating local government or local cooperative organization or directly under a contract, as provided in the agreement.
- Be responsible for the vendor’s compliance.
If the college district participates in a cooperative purchasing program, it satisfies any law requiring it to seek competitive bids.
CONTRACT RELATED FEE REPORT
A college district that enters into a purchasing contract valued at $25,000 or more under Education Code 44.031(a)(5) (interlocal contract), under Local Government Code Chapter 271, Subchapter F (cooperative purchasing program), or under any other cooperative purchasing program authorized for college districts by law shall document any contract-related fee, including any management fee, and the purpose of each fee under the contract.
The amount, purpose, and disposition of any fee described above must be presented in a written report and submitted annually in an open meeting of the college. The written report must appear as an agenda item. The Commissioner of Education may audit the written report.
STATE COUNCIL ON COMPETITIVE GOVERNMENT
As approved by the State Council on Competitive Government, the college district may voluntarily participate in a contract awarded by the council or a state agency under Government Code 2162. A college district that purchases goods or services under this type of contract is considered to have satisfied any state law requiring competitive purchasing.
The college district may use the reverse auction procedure and must include in the procedure a notice provision and other provisions necessary to produce a method of purchasing that is advantageous to the college district and fair to vendors.
REVERSE AUCTION PROCEDURE MEANS:
- A real-time bidding process usually lasting less than one hour and taking place at a previously scheduled time and Internet location, in which multiple suppliers, anonymous to each other, submit bids to provide the designated goods or services; or
- Bidding process usually lasting less than two weeks and taking place during a previously scheduled period and at a previously scheduled Internet location, in which multiple suppliers, anonymous to each other, submit bids to provide the designated goods or services.
COMMITMENT OF CURRENT REVENUE
A contract for the acquisition, including lease, of real or personal property is a commitment of the college district’s current revenue only, provided the contract contains either or both of the following provisions:
- Retains to the college the continuing right to terminate the contract at the expiration of each budget period during the term of the contract.
- Is conditioned on a best efforts attempt by the college to obtain and appropriate funds for payment of the contract.
If a change in plans or specifications is necessary after the performance of a contract is begun or if it is necessary to decrease or increase the quantity of work to be performed or of materials, equipment, or supplies to be furnished, the college district may approve change orders making the changes. The college district grants general authority to the Vice President of Finance and Administration or the District President to approve the change orders.
The total contract price may not be increased because of the changes unless additional money for increased costs is approved for that purpose from available money or is provided for by the authorization of the issuance of time warrants.
A contract with an original contract price of $1 million or more may not be increased by more than 25 percent. If a change order for a contract with an original contract price of less than $1 million increases the contract amount to $1 million or more, the total of the subsequent change orders may not increase the revised contract amount by more than 25 percent of the original contract price.
ENERGY OR WATER CONSERVATION MEASURES
The governing board of an institution of higher education may enter into an energy savings performance contract in accordance with Education Code 51.927. An energy savings performance contract shall be let according to the procedures established for procuring certain professional services by Government Code 2254.004. Education Code 51.927(b), (i)
The college district shall give preference in purchasing to products made of recycled materials if the products meet applicable specifications as to quantity and quality. The college district shall regularly review and revise its purchasing procedures and specifications for purchase of goods, supplies, equipment, and materials in order to:
- Eliminate procedures and specifications that explicitly discriminate against products made of recycled materials.
- Encourage the use of products made of recycled materials.
- Ensure to the maximum extent economically feasible that the college district purchase products that may be recycled when they have served their intended use.
In developing new procedures and specifications, the college district shall encourage the use of recycled products and products that may be recycled or reused. Health and Safety Code 361.426(a)–(c)
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) by order shall exempt from compliance with this section an entity described above if the entity petitions TCEQ for an exemption and TCEQ finds that compliance would work a hardship on the entity. Health and Safety Code 361.426(d)
If the cost and quality are equal, the college district shall give preference in purchasing to agricultural products, including textiles and other similar products that are produced, processed, or grown in Texas. “Processed” means canning, freezing, drying, juicing, preserving, or any other act that changes the form of a good from its natural state to another form. If Texas agricultural products are not equal in cost and quality to other agricultural products, the college district shall give preference in purchasing to agricultural products produced, processed, or grown in the United States, if the cost and quality of the U.S. and foreign products are equal.
The college district may not adopt product purchasing specifications that unnecessarily exclude agricultural products produced, processed, or grown in Texas.
VEGETATION FOR LANDSCAPING
If cost is equal and the quality is not inferior, the college district shall give preference to Texas vegetation when it purchases vegetation for landscaping purposes.
The college shall not purchase milk, cream, butter, cheese, or a product consisting largely of one or more of those items that has been imported from outside the United States. However, imported milk powder may be purchased if domestic milk powder is not readily available in the normal course of business.
The college district shall not purchase beef or a product consisting substantially of beef that has been imported from outside the United States.
Subject to Government Code 418.193, a public safety entity, as defined by 47 U.S.C. 1401, may purchase commodity items through DIR, and be charged a reasonable administrative fee, as provided by Government Code 2157.068. Gov't Code 2157.068(j)
Before entering into a contract with the college district, a person or business must give notice to the college district if the person or an owner or operator of the business has been convicted of a felony. The college district may terminate a contract with a person or business if the college district determines that the person or business failed to give such notice or misrepresented the conduct resulting in the conviction. The college district must compensate the person for services performed before the contract terminated.
RIGHT TO WORK
While engaged in procuring goods and services or awarding a contract, the college district:
- May not consider whether a vendor is a member of or has another relationship with any organization; and
- Shall ensure that its bid specifications and any subsequent contract or other agreement do not deny or diminish the right of a person to work because of the person’s membership or other relationship status with respect to any organization.
A board member, employee, or agent shall not, with criminal negligence, make or authorize
separate, sequential, or component purchases to avoid the purchasing requirements
set out in Education Code 44.031. An officer or employee shall not knowingly violate
Education Code 44.031 in any other manner.
“Component purchases” means purchases of the component parts of an item that in normal purchasing practices would be made in one purchase. “Separate purchases” means purchases, made separately, of items that in normal purchasing practices would be made in one purchase. “Sequential purchases” means purchases, over a period, of items that in normal purchasing practices would be made in one purchase.
Violation of this provision is a Class B misdemeanor and an offense involving moral turpitude, conviction of which shall result in removal from office or dismissal from employment. The college member who is convicted of a violation of this provision is considered to have committed official misconduct and for four years after the date of final conviction, the removed person is ineligible to be appointed or elected to public office in Texas, is ineligible to be employed by or act as an agent for the state or a political subdivision, and is ineligible to receive any compensation through a contract with the state or a political subdivision.
A court may enjoin performance of a contract made in violation of Education Code Chapter 44, Subchapter B. A county attorney, district attorney, criminal district attorney, citizen of the county in which a college district is located, or any interested party may bring an action for an injunction. A party who prevails in an action brought under this subsection is entitled to reasonable attorney’s fees as approved by the court.
Employees purchasing services or merchandise without an approved purchase order prior to the purchase are subject to paying personally for the services or merchandise.
- The first time employees are determined to have made purchases that are non-compliant with the law and/or Navarro College policies and procedures, the employee will be notified by the Director of Budget and Procurement and/or the Vice President for Finance and Administration. The employee will need to provide a written explanation of the purchase and why the proper steps were not followed in making the purchase for audit documentation.
- A second occurrence of non-compliance with procurement laws, policy or procedure will result in the employee being required to meet with the Director of Budget and Procurement and the Vice President for Finance and Administration. The employee will also be required to attend training on procurement laws and Navarro College policies and procedures related to procurement.
- A third occurrence will result in a meeting with Human Resources.
Such action could lead to termination of employment by the College. This also applies to any violation of state purchasing law or other misuse of the purchasing card or other college credit cards.
The Accountant/Procurement Officer will make the Director of Budget and Procurement aware of noncompliant transactions. Procurement Cards will be suspended at the discretion of the Program Administrators for violations of purchasing policy and procedures. The Director of Budget and Procurement will make a recommendation to the Vice President of Finance and Administration concerning requesting repayment form an employee.
Updated: August 25, 2020