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Purchasing Procedures

Comparative Shopping Guide

To ensure that the school district is obtaining materials and services at the most competitive price, state law requires “comparative shopping” before the purchase is made. The guidelines for comparative shopping vary according to the size of the purchase, ranging from informal price quotes to official, advertised requests for sealed bids. The amount by which contracts shall be competitively bid escalate automatically based upon the annual adjustment by the Superintendent of Public Instruction. (Public Contract Code 20111a).

Bids and Quotes

Informal Quotes
Purchases under $10,000 do not require a quote. However, quotes are highly recommended, as they will expedite the purchasing process.

Formal Quotes
Purchases from $10,000 to $99,100 for services, equipment and materials will require two (2) formal written quotes. Purchasing or department shall obtain a formal quote that is written on company’s letterhead. Purchasing will perform and/or assist the site with this task.

Advertised Bids
All purchases that exceed the legal bid limits must adhere to the advertised bid procedure required by the State of California. The Board of Trustees must then approve the recommended award. District funds cannot be committed prior to Board approval on purchases of this size. Purchasing will facilitate advertised bids. The bid process may take six to eight weeks from the time of budget approval to the final authorization of the Board of Trustees. The threshold for 2022 is $99,100.

The Oceanside Unified School District (“District”) has adopted the Uniform Construction Cost Accounting Procedures under Public Contract Code §22000 et seq. The Act allows for public project work in the amount of $60,000 or less to be performed by a public agency’s force account, by negotiated contract, or by purchase order (Section 22032(a)). Public projects in the amount of $200,000 or less may use the informal bidding procedures set forth in Section 22032(b) of the Act. Public projects at a cost of more than $200,000 shall use formal bidding procedures to let the contract pursuant PCC Section 22032(c).

Sole Source
Any purchases of materials or services that are available from only one source require written documentation confirming such. This written documentation would take the place of the required formal quote/bid and will be obtained and approved by Purchasing. This is a very rare practice.

Pre-Existing Bids (Piggyback Clause, Public Contract Code 20118)
Purchases may also be obtained by using a Pre-Existing Bid. This type of bid must include the clause in the bid document at the time of bid opening and must be granted by the awarded vendor. Purchasing shall research these bids. A resolution or board agenda item is required to obtain items from a Pre-Existing Bid.