Procurement Checklist (Local Government Purchasing)


Is there statutory or ordinance authority for placing purchasing authority with one official or department?

Does the authorization extend to federally funded programs?

Does the authorization prohibit delegation of portions of the authority to other units in the government?

If not, what delegations of authority are currently in effect?

Is there a written procurement statute, ordinance, or policy statement...

• locating purchasing responsi-bility in a special position within the government independent of major using activities?

• describing the overall pur-chasing goals & objectives?

• specifying the authority of the purchasing department in all aspects of acquisition, contract administration, quality assurance, and surplus property transfer and disposal?

• specifically setting out all aspects of purchasing delegated to other departments, and the manner in which such activities are to be monitored & controlled by purchasing?

• providing that purchasing may promulgate implementing regulations?

• covering a code or standard of conduct governing the performance of purchasing officials and personnel as well as contractors or their agents?

Do the statutes, ordinances, or regulations prescribe dollar limits for each of the varying degrees of formality used in soliciting bids?

If so, list source, limits, and degree of formality

Does purchasing have written policies & guidelines defining what factors are to be considered in determining the responsiveness of a bid as well as the contractor's capacity to perform?

Are these factors included in the invitation for bids so that the potential bidder knows what is required?

Does purchasing have written policies & guidelines governing the use in the bid specification of such clauses as...

• Option for additional units above the specific quantity?

• Alternate prices, with & without trade-ins?

• Conditions under which all bids may be rejected in whole or in part?


Is the purchasing department included in all top-level planning affecting future procurement practices or needs?

Does purchasing have written instructions governing itself or using departments and agencies...

• to forecast future item needs?

• to provide past usage data?

Is the government's financial management information system structured to accumulate such data as quantities purchased, ordering frequencies, vendor performance, and unit prices per transaction?

Does the purchasing department use market research to secure economic information which may affect purchasing, such as...

• current market conditions of items bought on long-term contracts?

• changes in local program needs?

• technical progress affecting supply or equipment production?

• seasonal requirements or fluctuating markets?

• transportation costs?

Are value analysis appraisals made annually for a stipulated percentage of items being procured?

If so, which of the following considerations are covered by the appraisals

• new sources of supply?

• standardization of items?

• identification of new and better products?

• identification of alternative products, including aspects of price and quality?

• storing and handling, vendor stocking costs?

other? Specify

Does purchasing review at least annually past usage and requirement forecasts to assess the potential for consolidating and/or reducing purchase requirements?

Does purchasing have an ongoing program to assess the appropriateness of the manner used to satisfy requirements?

Does the program involve the use of questionnaires or discussions with other government units as well as prospective suppliers?

Does purchasing use for satisfying requirements contracting methods such as...

• definite quantity, definite period?

• minimum (guarantee) quantity, definite period?

• estimated (indefinite) quantity, definite period?

• estimated (indefinite) quantity, indefinite period (until canceled by either party)?

Has the decision to use a particular form of contracting for satisfying specific requirements been reassessed during the last year?

Does purchasing make lease v. purchase comparisons in acquiring equipment, such as vehicles?

Does purchasing evaluate whether it is more economical to make the item or perform the service in-house v. contracting out?

Does purchasing...

• monitor frequency & volume of purchases of the same or similar items to see whether a term contract might be cheaper?

• monitor different departments' purchase requests for the same or similar items to see whether con¬solidation may achieve economies?

• have written procedures to govern how such potential is to be identified?

• require that requisitions or purchase requests be signed by responsible department officials?


Does a statute, ordinance, or regulation require purchasing to use competitive procedures for acquiring supplies, materials, equipment, and services other than professional?

Does purchasing..

• participate in contracting for professional services?

• prescribe procedures followed in such contracting?

• review the procurements made for compliance with such procedures?

In securing formal bids for contract purchases, does purchasing...

• prepare or have the authority for review & approval of bid invitations?

• maintain & update a list of prospective bidders?

• have written criteria governing the addition, deletion, and reinstatement of bidders and vendors, and the potential of bidders to perform under the terms and conditions of the proposed procurement?

• have written procedures governing the receipt, control, opening & evaluation of bids?

• have authority to determine which bids have the terms & conditions of the invitation?

• maintain a record (such as a bid history record) to help purchasing identify collusive bidding practices?

Is there a provision governing procurement when formal bidding is not required?

Are written records required for all informal negotiations except inprest fund purchases?

Is the number of vendors required to be contacted under various conditions specified?

Is there a policy stipulating the conditions under which blanket purchase orders may be used?

Is there a provision defining the special procedures to be followed when competitive procedures are not used...

• in emergencies?

• where there is no responsible competition, or one source; where patents or proprietary rights exist; or where stand-ardization/interchangeability is advantageous?

• when items are to be acquired solely for testing?

Are there statutes, regulations, or policies affecting open competition, such as "local purchase" requirements?

Is there a formal program for identifying suppliers not previously solicited?

Is there a requirement to document the results of the program periodically?


Does purchasing standardize items commonly used by two or more departments or agencies?

Is there a central stockroom from which all departments & agencies are required to draw supplies & equipment?

Is there a catalog of items available from the stockroom?

Does purchasing require written justification for item acquisition outside the stockroom standard?

Where specifications are prepared for special items or services by departments & agencies, does purchasing have the power to review, modify, and approve them?

Are brand names avoided or expressly stated to be only descriptive (identifying salient features) and not restrictive?

Are performance specifications rather than prescriptive specifications used?

Does purchasing consider using commercial standards, or specifications developed by the Federal, State, or other local government units and found acceptable, in lieu of developing its own specif i-cations?

Does purchasing use qualified product lists or lists of acceptable brands as an alternative to developing its own specifications?

Are there written criteria covering procedures for placing and removing products and brands from these lists?


Does purchasing have the authority to establish and oversee a program of inspection of deliveries to insure that items delivered meet specifications?

Are there written instructions governing receipt & inspection of deliveries?

Does purchasing routinely monitor the inspection program?

Has there been a determination as to...

• The items to be tested to determine compliance with specifications?

• The frequency of the testing?

• Those who should do the testing?

Are there written procedures covering the handling of user and/or contractor complaints?


Does purchasing participate in the inventory procedures of the government to insure that...

• expendable property is properly controlled?

• nonexpendable property is:
- identified?
- assigned for accountability to specific units of government?

• periodic inventories of expendable and nonexpendable property are taken?

Does purchasing secure a copy of the inventory documents for all units of government so that it may identify equipment which may be available to reduce or eliminate purchase of additional items?

Is purchasing assigned the authority to supervise the surplus and scrap programs?

Are spot checks made and records kept of equipment utilization?

Does purchasing have written procedures for...

• timely identification and reporting of surplus & scrap items to purchasing?

• notifying other departments & agencies of available usable surplus?

• disposing of unneeded or unusable items?


Does the local government encourage the purchasing officials and technical staff...

• to keep current with procurement trends (e. g., affiliate with professional purchasing associations)?

• to secure formal training and education as a supplement to their job-acquired knowledge?

Does the local government provide support for (1) & (2) above by providing funding?


If there are no statutory prohibitions, does purchasing...

• enter into joint or cooperative purchasing agreements with other local government?

• purchase from State contracts?

• have a program for continually searching for ways to increase potential savings through increased use of cooperative pur-chasing arrangements?

Where cooperative purchasing is used, does purchasing have a program for evaluating any additional costs involved to determine whether the total costs may be higher than costs of buying separately?


Is there an internal or external audit of the procurement system to evaluate the effectiveness or economy with which it is making purchases?

Are annual performance goals, both quantitative and qualitative, established for the purchasing unit?

Does purchasing report periodi-cally on its performance?

Is management required to measure the purchasing organization's performance?

If so, is this periodically accomplished and documented?

Which of the following indices are maintained or otherwise available to monitor purchasing activities:

• purchasing cost (includes cost of central stores operation) per $1,000 of procurement?

• purchasing cost per purchase order issued?

• cost of central stores per $1,000 of stores procurement?

• user complaints?

• out-of-stock condition?

• dollar value of inventory?

• emergency purchases?

other? Specify



Prepared by: Full Name and Signature