Skip to main content

Purchasing Procedures


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).


v  Informal Quotes

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

v  Formal Quotes

Purchases from $10,000 to $92,600 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.

v  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. Current legal bid limit is $15,000 for public works projects. (Construction related projects.) The bid threshold for formal bidding Under PCC 20111(a) is calculated, adjusted and effective January 1st of every calendar year through the State Superintendent of Public Instruction. The threshold for 2019 is $92,600.

v  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.

v  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.