Univerisity Procurement Office

Use of Purchase Contracts

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Use of Purchasing Contracts

Non-competitive purchases, without benefit of public bids or a recognized contract, must be $5000 or less in value. The University recognizes four types of contracts, competitively bid, which enable departments to order materials in excess of the $5,000 limit without further bidding:

  1. Massachusetts Higher Education Consortium Contracts (MHEC), a purchasing consortium created for, and used by, most institutions of higher education in Massachusetts;
  2. Campus Contracts, created by a UMass campus procurement department;
  3. (State Contracts, created by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for use by all agencies of the Commonwealth; and
  4. University Contracts, created by the UMass Purchasing Council for use by the UMass campuses.

These contracts leverage the University's combined buying power. In exchange, the contract participants offer special pricing based on the vendor's anticipation of business to be realized during the contract term.

Departments are encouraged to use contracts, regardless of the dollar amount to realize savings, to support the intent of the contract, and to meet Board of Trustee requirements. Note that a University purchasing contract should always take precedence over any similar contract that might be offered by any other contracting entity.

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