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Purchasing Guidelines

The purchase of goods and services from funds administered through the State of New York, including State Operations, DIFR, IFR, and Current Restricted Fund, are subject to the New York State Finance Law, State Agency Regulations, Executive Branch Directives, and State University Policy, often resulting in a complex process. Flexibility Legislation extended real benefits to SUNY in terms of campus discretion but did little to ease complexities and deliberately placed a far greater responsibility and accountability at the campus level.

College policy requires that only authorized College representatives may make commitments for the purchase, lease, or rental of goods or services. Authorized representatives are defined as those Business Office employees specifically designated by the president and vice president for finance and management and having signatures on file with the state of New York. Additionally, P-card holders are authorized to make purchases for the college within established guidelines for cardholders. Limited purpose authorizations may at times be further delegated as circumstances warrant.

It is necessary to receive prior approval from Purchasing for planned purchase of goods or services, including contractual obligations. The incurring of any liability without prior approval is unauthorized and becomes a personal liability. Unauthorized actions in rare cases of true emergency affecting the immediate health and safety of persons or property are justified and then only if Purchasing could not be reached. Standing Procedures for Physical Plant and Public Safety address emergency situations.

While nothing can replace good planning, and often a crisis results merely from the lack of it, the unanticipated will at times occur. In those circumstances Purchasing may, for expediency, give a verbal authorization and issue a purchase order number in advance of receipt of the purchase requisition and purchase order issuance; however, the rule of authorization is maintained.

In all cases a call to Purchasing (ext. 2305) will clarify the proper action and gain the guidance and assistance needed.