Quote Requirements

Competitive Pricing: Competitive pricing is the accepted standard to follow to assure that the University is obtaining commodities, goods and services at the best possible price with an appropriate level of quality. Purchasing practices good public administration policies to insure that purchases are made at the best possible prices and within the Standards of Conduct. Purchasing follows the purchasing policies as established by the University, the Florida Board of Governors, and the Florida Statutes.

Price Quotes - Formal written price quotes are not required for the purchase of commodities, goods or services amounting to less than $5,000. However, verbal quotes or current catalog prices are required and must be documented.

Quotations - The purchase of commodities, goods or services with a value greater than or equal to $5,000 and less than $25,000 must have Quotations either verbal or written, verbal quotes must be documented in requisition.  At least two quotes are required. The purchase of commodities, goods or services with a value greater than or equal to $25,000 and less than $75,000 requires at least three (3) written quotations.

Formal Bids - The following rules and laws have been established for the purchase of goods and services greater than or equal to $75,000: No purchase of commodities may be made when the purchase price is greater than or equal to $75,000, unless based upon competitive bids except when made as a single source, emergency purchase or Sponsored Research exception.  Purchasing will certify this in writing and document the bid files. No purchases may be divided or subdivided for the purpose of circumventing the intent of the bid requirements.

Sole Source - If an item or service is determined by Purchasing to be non-competitive in nature and is available from only one vendor, a Purchase Order may be issued for that item. 

If the purchase falls below the public bid threshold of $75,000, the information may be submitted by memo or by placing a comment on the header comments of the requisition. The explanation should include the following:

  • a description in lay language of the service of equipment and its intended use
  • the reasons the item is not subject to competition from other sources
  • the necessity for compatibility with existing equipment, instrumentation or systems (if applicable)
  • why only this equipment or service has unique features or qualities that will accomplish the required needs of the requestor

The fact that a piece of equipment is much less expensive than comparable models from other manufacturers is no justification of single source. Submission of justification is no guarantee that the single source will be accepted by the Director of Purchasing and Property Services. Single source certifications are posted for public review and to give interested parties the opportunity to protest.

If the cost is $75,000 or greater, the Single Source Certificate must be approved and executed prior to a Purchase Order being issued.  Each request must contain information as to the single source nature of the purchase. The Single Source certificate must be publicly posted 72 hours prior to issuance of a purchase order greater than or equal to $75,000.

Annual Certification - authorization is granted for an annual certification for acquisition of single source items in accordance with the USF Regulation USF4.02010(IV)(A)(3)(q), Sole Source Procurement.

Emergency Purchase - Every attempt will be made to secure necessary items during an emergency situation. If the University President or the President's designee determines, in writing, that an immediate danger to the public health, safety, welfare, or other substantial loss to the University may occur, then the University may proceed with the purchase without competitive bidding. The written description outlining the basis for the emergency purchase becomes a part of the file. Contact Purchasing prior to making a commitment.

Exceptions to the quote and bidding requirements are enlisted in regulation USF4.02010.