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Policy No.: 5000
Effective Date: 04/01/01
Revised Date: 06/01/18
Reviewed Date: 06/01/18

Purchasing Policy

The University of Nebraska Board of Regents established a purchasing policy to provide uniform guidelines for the administration of the University of Nebraska. This policy applies to funds administered by the University for the purchase of supplies, equipment and services.

The commitment of University funds is made by means of an official University purchase order or contract, approved by the appropriate administrative officer or designee. For more information, see Contract Signature Authority.

No agent may participate in the selection, award or administration of a purchase order or contract if they have a real or apparent conflict of interest. See UNMC Policy No. 8010, Conflict of Interest.

Basis of Purchasing Policy

The University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) follows the purchasing policy established by the University Board of Regents. For detailed information, see Bylaws of the Board of Regents, Section 6.1 relating to obligation; Section 6.4 relating to contracts; Nebraska Revised Statutes related to public lettings; and the Board of Regents Policies, Chapter 6. Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200) requires certain policies be established for sound procurement practices.

Bid Requirements and Documentation

Micro-purchases: All supplies or services, in aggregate, under $10,000 may be made without quotations if the price is considered reasonable.

Small purchases: Purchases where an expenditure is between $10,000 and $150,000 requires evidence of an adequate number of quotes or bids. The department is required to keep evidence of price quotations, by attaching them to e-requisitions. The UNMC Procurement Office is available to assist in this process.

Except as otherwise provided in the Purchasing policy, most purchases committing the University to an expenditure of $150,000 or more require competitive bids. Where competitive bids are called for, a minimum of fifteen (15) days shall elapse between the time bids are advertised or sent and the time of their due date. In the event that the commitment exceeds $250,000, a written report is sent to the Board of Regents. Commitments greater than $400,000 must be approved by the Board of Regents prior to the issuance of a purchase order.

All purchases over $150,000 must be coordinated through the UNMC Procurement Office.

Procurement using Federal Funds

UNMC will comply with Uniform Guidance Procurement Standards 2 CFR §200.317-326 applicable to Federal Funds. See UNMC Policy No. 6100, Sponsored Programs Costing, for more information about Uniform Guidance.

Special Requirements

Because of federal, state, local and university requirements, requisition review and approval is required, prior to the issuance of a purchase order, for the following:

Animal purchases

To ensure UNMC complies with Public Law 89-544 (Animal Welfare Act) and other applicable federal regulations, requisitions for animals must be coordinated and approved by Comparative Medicine, 402-559-4034.

Radioactive materials

Requisitions for radioactive materials must be coordinated and approved by the Radiation Safety Officer as required by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services and UNMC's Radioactive Materials License #01-50-01.

Capital equipment

The specifications of equipment which meet any of the following criteria shall be reviewed by Facilities Management and Planning before a purchase order is issued:

  • Equipment or systems which may require special building system support such as steam, chilled water, heating, ventilation, air conditioning, major electrical, fire protection or plumbing (e.g. fume hoods, biological cabinets, sterilizers, ice machines, etc.)
  • Equipment for systems which are exceptionally bulky and/or heavy

Capital equipment for research

Purchase requests for capital equipment valued at $50,000 or greater and used primarily for research purposes must be reviewed by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research prior to finalizing the purchase (issuance of a purchase order). This process not only prevents the unnecessary duplication of expensive equipment, but also allows the tracking of the availability of technology on campus in order to maximize use of available equipment.

Travel agencies

The University of Nebraska system has contracted travel agency services with selected agencies. Travel reservations involving funds administered by UNMC are to be arranged through the contract travel agencies. Please refer to UNMC's Travel and Reimbursement Policy and the Travel Quick Reference. To receive additional information, contact Travel.

Moving companies

Authorized moving expenses for the transportation of personal household goods of new employees or relocation of full-time employees should be made solely to UNMC's contract carrier, except as approved and authorized by the Vice Chancellor for Business and Finance or designee. Please refer to UNMC's Travel Quick Reference. Contact Accounts Payable for more information.

Software/IT purchases

Equipment, software (either installed locally, on a server or Software as a Service (SaaS), or systems that connect to the campus network (wired or wireless) for any purpose must have Third Party Risk Assessments per the UNMC ITS Information Security Risk Assessment Procedure.

Trade-in of equipment

Trade-ins must be coordinated with General Accounting, Purchasing and General Supply. Please refer to the Purchasing Information Manual.

Purchasing Card

The University of Nebraska System has authorized the use of a purchasing card on business-related expenses. Please refer to the Purchasing Web site for more detailed information.

Additional Information

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