University of Southern Indiana

Purchasing Policies


Procurement Services of the University of Southern Indiana  is the central purchasing agency of the University. Procurement Services has the sole authority to order supplies, materials and equipment and obligate the University for contractual services. Without definite and particular permission of Procurement Services, no University department may order directly by computer, email, letter, telephone, fax or in any other manner. The University will assume no obligations, except on a previously issued and duly authorized purchase order.

Procurement Services, in conducting its business and discharging its responsibilities, is guided by three primary objectives:

  • To consider the objectives and policies of the University as well as the particular requirements and objectives of the department.
  • To obtain maximum ultimate value for each dollar of expenditure.
  • To make sure that all qualified, competitive bidders be given equal consideration and opportunity to quote on the University's requirements.

Since Procurement Services is charged with the responsibility of obtaining maximum value for each dollar spent, it has the prerogative of  selecting the vendor. Such selection may not be arbitrary, but shall be an objective decision based on knowledge of the market gained through competitive bidding. It is the policy of Procurement Services, where all things are equal, to give first preference to MWBE (Minority and Women owned businesses) vendors, then to local vendors and finally to Indiana vendors.

As a basic buying tool, the use of competitive quotation requests is to secure the lowest and best pricing available, to survey the market, to foster a competitive climate and to provide a traceable audit record.

The following guideline is offered not as a fixed limit, but rather to enable the buyer to make sound and consistent judgments compatible with the goals of the department:

Ordering Thresholds: 

  • $1-$999.99 

Purchases for items other than office supplies (should use office supply contract when possible) and equipment that totals less than $1000.00 should be purchased by a direct pay form or on credit card when possible.  If a purchase order must be issued, submit a requisition in the Banner system for processing.

  • $1,000-$9999.99

The effort required to confirm the competitive selection of products and/or sources frequently will exceed any attainable savings, however obtaining one quotation is mandatory. Based on the buyer's knowledge of the product area and the nature of the item, additional quotes may be secured, although these purchases warrant minimal attention and should be processed by exception.  Groups of requisition, although individually of low value, may be combined advantageously for competitive bidding.

  • $10,000-$24,999.99

No less than three competitive quotations are required. However, if a product or supplier has been determined reasonable and advantageous by previous surveys of the market, the order process may be less stringent, yet should be supported by a single source quotation, price book verification or verbal quotation.  The order should be technically sound, complete and should contain a reference indicating the basis for the selection.

  • More than $25,000 

Competitive quotations mandatory. If this option is neither feasible nor possible, discuss with the Director of Procurement and, if agreed to, the explanation of the circumstance and justification should be included with the requisition as support documents. 

It will be generally permitted and sometimes required to purchase from a vendor which has negotiated a contract for its products with the University, state or federal government, the Educational and Institutional Cooperative Service or with other Group Purchasing Organizations. State purchasing policies currently exclude Universities from specific rules and regulations as it pertains to the procurement of items except for public works projects. Public works projects follow specific procedures as outlined in Indiana Code. The above guidelines for request for bids or quotations have been established by Business Affairs, but the procurement decisions are vested with the Director of Procurement by the Vice President for Business Affairs or designee who may choose to waive the guidelines and formalities based upon situations and circumstances for the procurement of all items needed by the University, except as they pertain to public works.

Public Works Projects

Any Public Works projects over $150,000 must be advertised two times and must have a public bid opening.

The amount required for a bid bond, performance bond and legal contract is $150,000.

If the project is under $150,000, it does not need to be advertised and does not require a public bid opening.


Emergency Exception

When an emergency arises which could not be reasonably foreseen, and health, welfare or safety requires immediate action and the project is estimates to be in excess of $25,000,  Procurement Services may contract for a project without advertising for bids if quotes are obtained from at least two (2) persons or firms known to deal in the work required to be done.  Such action should be recorded with the Board of Trustees at its next meeting, along with the names of the parties invited to quote on the project.


Contact Julie Weinzapfel
Send Email to