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For official copies of board policies and procedures please contact the superintendent's office at (253) 583-5190 or email

Purchasing Department Responsibilities

The purchasing department is responsible for the acquisition of goods and services.  With the exception of revolving account disbursements; purchase order 1000s (for ASB purchases under $200); travel and mileage claims; utilities; and purchases made with purchasing, travel and other credit cards; all obligations for either goods or services must be processed through the purchase order system for authorization by the purchasing department.  Purchase orders are originated by the ordering site for authorization by the purchasing department.  Exceptions are noted below under “Bid Requirements.”

Authorization by the purchasing department and the issuance of a purchase order must occur before goods and services are ordered and received.  Purchase orders shall be issued to vendors.  District employees may not be vendors.

Acquisition of goods or services by an employee of the district, with the exception of those noted above, without prior authorization of the purchasing department may be the sole responsibility of the employee.

The district may not purchase from any firm in which employees have a vested interest or for which they receive compensation for sales made to the district.  Any employee of the district who knowingly makes or recommends such a purchase shall be subject to discipline or termination and liability for damages sustained by the district. The board shall include in each contract a proviso requiring the contractor to prohibit any of its employees who has ever been convicted or pled guilty to any of the child related felonies from working where he/she would have contact with public school children.  The contract shall also provide that failure to comply with this requirement is grounds for immediate termination of the contract.

Informal Bids

Whenever the estimated cost of furniture, supplies, equipment or work meets or exceeds the amount specified by law for informal bids, informal bids shall be solicited from responsible vendors or, if a public works project, licensed contractors who appear on the District’s small works roster.

The purchasing department will determine if items $40,000 and under are being selected competitively and seek competitive pricing wherever possible.  From time to time, a site may have a purchase costing less than the amount requiring a bid or quote that ends up requiring a bid or quote because another site in the district has a similar or like requirement.  If this situation occurs, the purchasing department will advise each site of the change and whether further information is needed.

Purchases of furniture, equipment or supplies (except curriculum materials), the cost of which is estimated to be in excess of $40,000 up to  $100,000 will be made on a competitive basis as required by RCW 28A.335.190.  The contract for the purchases shall be awarded to the lowest responsible bidder as defined in RCW 43.19.1911.

The purchasing department will solicit telephone and/or written quotes from at least three different sources.  Quotations shall be recorded for public perusal.  The purchasing manager will determine final acceptance of telephone and written quotes.

Bid Requirements

The board of director’s  recognizes the importance of maximizing the use of district resources, the need for sound business practices in spending public money, the requirement of complying with state laws governing purchasing, the importance of standardized purchasing regulations, and the need for clear documentation in meeting auditing requirements.

Whenever the estimated cost for furniture, supplies, equipment or work meets or exceeds the amount specified by RCW 28A.335.190 for formal bids, formal bid shall be called for by issuing public notice in at least one (1) newspaper of general circulation once each week for two (2) consecutive weeks.  Clear and definite specifications shall be prepared and made available to vendors interested in submitting a bid.

Bid procedures shall be waived when the board declares an emergency for purchases involving special facilities or market conditions, for the purchases of insurance or bond or when purchases are clearly limited to a single source of supply.  Any time bid requirements are waived pursuant to this provision, a document explaining the factual basis for the exception and the contract shall be recorded and open for public inspection.

All contract work or purchases for items or multiples of like items (except curriculum materials) that are in excess of $100,000 must be formally bid as required by RCW 28A.335.190.  The contract for the work or purchases shall be awarded to the lowest responsible bidder as defined in RCW 43.19.1911.

The superintendent shall establish bidding and contract awarding procedures for all purchases of furniture, equipment, supplies (except curriculum materials) or public works projects consistent with state law.  The Board of Directors determines final acceptance.  Upon acceptance, the purchasing department shall send the formal purchase order and contracts to the awarded agency.  The board may by resolution reject any and all bids and make further calls for bids in the same manner as the original call.  The board reserves the right to purchase through an inter-local cooperative agreement with another governmental agency provided such agency has complied with the bidding requirements that are applicable to school districts.

The purchasing department shall originate all purchase orders for all goods and services that must be either bid (formal bid) or quoted (informal bid). Once inputted, the purchase order will then go through the electronic approval process.

Legal References: RCW 28A.335.190 Advertising for bids – Bid procedure – Telephone solicitation, limitations – Emergencies
RCW 28A.400.330 Crimes against Children – Contracted Employees – Termination of Contract
RCW 39.04.155 Small Works Roster – Contract award – Process
RCW 39.04.280 Competitive Bidding Requirements – Exceptions
RCW 39.30.060 Bids on public Works – Subcontractors must be identified when Notice of Modification or Cancellation
RCW 43.19.19141 Competitive Bids – Requirements – Lowest Responsible Bidder – Preferential Purchase – Life Cycle Costing


Former Procedure: 7101-P1

Date:  07.08.80

Revised: 10.9.85; 07.25.94; 05.01.03; 08.01.05; 05.09.11; 05.13.13