Business Services Do's and Don'ts
The purpose of this information is to provide guidance to departments in particular situations and reinforce the importance of adhering to established procedures to support the purchasing and fiscal processes hence ensuring timely and compliant procurements and funds disbursements.
- Observe the 2020/2021 Business Services Year-End Deadlines Calendar.
Wednesday, March 31, 2021 Last day to receive in purchasing fully funded and approved requisitions in excess of $96,700.00 along with an Authorization to Bid or Solicit Proposals form (requiring a formal competitive process).
Monday, April 12, 2021 Last day to receive in purchasing requisitions and/or Contract Request Forms (funded and approved) for General Fund supplies, equipment & services, and Categorical Programs to be delivered and invoiced by June 30, 2021.
Monday, June 15, 2021 Last day to make purchases against Blanket Purchase Orders and purchases from Staples and Office Depot. Orders must be received by June 30, 2021 or will impact department’s next year budget.
Please refer to the Year-End Deadlines Calendar for more details.
- Complete budget transfer and ensure funds availability prior to submitting and approving a requisition in Banner for goods and/or Contract Request Form (CRF) for services.
- Ensure using the correct vendor name/number on your requisition. Notify Purchasing Services if informed by the vendor of any changes to company name, billing address or contact information.
- Approve requisitions only when: materials or services are actually needed for operation, the proper account number(s) have been assigned, funds exist in the account indicated, there is adequate description of the items needed, all available information has been included, and the delivery location indicated has adequate storage space to accept the materials.
- Add taxes (10.25%) to all your purchase requisitions (Services are not taxable) even when the vendor is not billing for taxes or applying a lower tax rate. Also remember to include shipping charges on your requisition as applicable.
- Acquire ITS, Facilities Services and/or HR approval when applicable prior to submitting a requisition for a Purchase Order or Contract Request Form. Approval documentation must be forwarded to Purchasing Services and identified with corresponding requisition number. Failure to provide supporting documentation could delay processing and timely delivery. No preapprovals will be required for future renewals/amendments unless said renewals/amendments comprise changes or additions to the scope of work that necessitate another review and preapproval.
- Do not use a requisition number to place an order directly with a vendor or allow them to ship product(s). Only purchase orders or contracts issued by Purchasing Services are considered valid purchasing tools and an obligation of the District.
- Do not place an order directly with a vendor then submit your requisition. This is considered an After-The-Fact transaction and could require special approval for processing. Such transactions are not an obligation of the District but that of the individual placing the order out of established rules and procedures.
- Do not contact the vendor directly to increase, decrease, add items or change a “ship to” address to an existing purchase order without coordinating your request with purchasing and ensuring a revised purchase order was issued.
- Do not purchase chemicals, sanitizers or classroom air purifiers without first checking
with Facilities Services
Facilities can assist and provide guidance with such items.
- Do not delay submission of your requisitions and quotes to Purchasing Services. Early submission allows time for processing and timely delivery of requested goods and/or services.
- Ensure vendors/contractors submit their invoices upon delivery or completion of services.
- Verify invoices reflect the correct purchase order number and actual goods/services received, quantities and pricing according to pre-established purchases order or contracts. Any discrepancies must be reported immediately to Purchasing Services and Accounts Payable.
- Sign and date verified invoices, write the corresponding purchase order or contract number on each invoice and forward them to Accounts Payable.
- Respond timely to inquiries about your invoices.
- Do not delay acquisition and submission of invoices to Accounts Payable. This could negatively impact your department and the District as a whole.
- Be cognizant of the expiration date and the termination requirement of your agreements and plan accordingly.
- Be cognizant of auto-renewal clause in the contract. It can be costly to your department unless you act timely to terminate services.
- Submit a Contract Request Form (CRF) timely for any new agreements or amendments along with a fully funded requisition and allow sufficient time for processing and Board approval prior to commencement of services.
- Ensure contract funding is in place and will be available in sufficient time to meet the payment obligations of the contract. Federal “Anti-Deficiency” law requires that contracting authority not enter into contracts unless they can be fully funded.
- Be cognizant of your department’s responsibility and compliance obligations per the terms of the agreement.
- Do not draft your own contract, MOU, MOA, LOA, etc., with a vendor or another institution, and do not use previous year’s template and proceed with requesting signatures. Even though this process could apply in some situations, agreements still require routine reviews to ensure compliance with law changes, codes amendments, scope of work changes, liability concerns, student’s privacies, cyber security, insurance limits, and other specific requirements that apply to requested services.
- Do not sign a contract or any type of agreement with a vendor. Senior Staff and Directors do not have contract signing authority. Ed. Code § 81655 and Pasadena Area Community College’s Board Policy 6100 has delegated the contracting authority to the Superintendent/President and other officers appointed by the Superintendent/President. Unless the delegation of authority to sign contracts on behalf of the District identifies you personally by name, you should never sign a contract or MOU, MOA, LOA, etc.… on behalf of the District.
- Do not authorize a contractor to commence services or a vendor to ship products unless
a valid, Board approved and fully executed contract or purchase order has already
been established. Only transactions validated with District purchase order or contract
numbers will be considered District responsibility.
Transactions entered into by private individuals without the use of a proper purchasing document will be considered privates transactions and NOT an obligation upon the District.
- Do not submit a Contract Request Form (CRF) without having generated a fully funded and approved requisition in Banner to cover the entire payment obligations of the contract including travel expenses when applicable for at least the first year of contract’s performance. Otherwise, contract’s processing will be delayed until funding is secured.
Bids and Requests for Proposals Do’s
- Submit your Authorization to Bid (ATB) request and detailed scope of work in sufficient time to allow for prior Board authorization, bid/solicitation document development, conducting the solicitation, contract award, Board approval, and contract execution.
- Contact Purchasing Services at the initial stages of the procurement process rather than at the end of the selection process, so that proper and compliant procedures are ensured and followed when you have a need of obtaining any specialized, scientific, electronic, services, capital or other equipment which would require special research of the market and/or exceeds the current bid threshold of $96,700.
Bids and Requests for Proposals Don’ts
- Do not share project details with a vendor or authorize him/her to write the scope of work or specifications. This will give the vendor an unfair advantage over other bidders and will cause him to be excluded from competing in the solicitation.
- Do not split a single project into smaller projects to avoid formal solicitation.
Sole Source Justification
- Sole Source requests are subject to market research and verification. A vendor’s letter is not a sufficient justification. Should allow sufficient time for Sole Source validation.
- Sole Source procurements are subject to prior Board approval.
- Do not contact vendors directly and establish your own department’s account separate from the District. Only Purchasing Services can establish one single account on behalf of the District. Please contact Purchasing for assistance.
Please contact the following areas if you have questions for:
- Budget: (626) 585-7645
Laconia D. Fennessy firstname.lastname@example.org
Maria A. Alzaga email@example.com
- Facility and Construction Services: (626) 585-7278
Carl J. Sheaffer firstname.lastname@example.org
Linda K. Valencia LKVALENCIA@pasadena.edu
- Fiscal Services: (626) 585-7451
Eva Marie Delgado-Dean EMDELGADO@pasadena.edu
Marina M. Minasian email@example.com
- Information Technology Services: (626) 585-7136
Dir. Enterprise Application, Information Technology
- Purchasing and Contract Services: (626) 585- 7367
George J. Chidiac firstname.lastname@example.org