Office of Sponsored Programs
The Ohio State University

Purchasing – Special Issues

Split Funding Purchases

University/Office of Sponsored Programs
To satisfy cost sharing requirements of a project, a Office of Sponsored Programs purchase order may be issued using both sponsored project and university funds. When sponsored project and university funds are used to pay for a single purchase, prepare a requisition form and list the funding project and the university department and budget numbers in the body of the requisition form. Show the dollar amounts and the authorized signature next to the project and Ohio State chart field information. Submit the requisition to Office of Sponsored Programs Procurement and the purchase with the vendor will be placed.

Accounting pays invoices upon receipt of goods or services and relieves the project commitment. Accounts Payable then posts the cost sharing to the associated project and enters an internal departmental billing into the GL to bill the university fund. The title to Office of Sponsored Programs purchased equipment will vest with the Office of Sponsored Programs and is subject to the property policies and procedures of the Office of Sponsored Programs.

Competitive and Noncompetitive Procurements

Competitive Bidding
The competitive bidding threshold is $25,000. Regardless of the total price on the requisition, some form of price or cost analysis must be made in connection with every procurement action to establish reasonableness of cost. Price analysis may be accomplished by comparison price quotations and current published market prices together with discounts. Cost analysis is a review and evaluation of each element of cost to determine if the price is reasonable.

Procurement transactions of $25,000 or more require competitive bidding or an approved justification for noncompetitive purchasing. However, Procurement retains the option of using competitive bidding under this threshold if the market is competitive. A Single/Sole Source Justification and/or Waiver of Competitive Bidding form (PR-025) must be submitted with the requisition when requesting a noncompetitive procurement.

Orders may be placed with a vendor that has an established pricing agreement with the Office of Sponsored Programs, the university, or the State of Ohio without further competitive bidding. Sponsored projects funded under federal contracts, as opposed to grants, may also qualify for GSA discounts which are also exempt from competitive bidding. To expedite requests for purchase of items on these pre-approved price agreements or GSA contracts, attach a vendor’s price quotation to the completed requisition. The price quotation should clearly show the discounts offered and reference the price agreement name and number and GSA Contract Number.

Non-Competitive Purchases Single/Sole Source Waiver of Competitive Bidding
A Single/Sole Source Justification and/or Waiver of Competitive Bidding form (PR-025) needs to be completed and sent with your requisition for procurements costing $25,000 or more when it is determined that only one source is reasonably available.

Factors influencing the availability of an item would include but not be limited to:

  • The nature of the article or service to be purchased and whether it is highly competitive and readily available in other makes or brands or if it is relatively non competitive
  • Information obtained in making recent purchases of the same or similar items
  • The urgency of the proposed purchase and if a compelling need can be clearly demonstrated. Lack of planning is not a justification for an urgent need.
  • Necessity to operate with existing equipment costing a specified amount. A comparison cost analysis for purchase of new non-compatible equipment should be performed.
  • Uniquely required product performance specifications.
  • Nationally recognized technical expertise

Leasing Space Off-Campus

Principal investigators sometimes find it necessary to lease off-campus space or facilities for their projects. If this need arises, the principal investigator should contact his or her sponsored program officer. The need for off-campus space for sponsored projects must be documented on the Authorization to Seek Off-Campus Funds (ePA-005) at the time a proposal is submitted. Leasing space requires Office of Sponsored Programs approval.

After the Office of Sponsored Programs approvals have been obtained, contact the university’s Division of Property Management (PMD), to convey your needs. PMD will seek suitable options and, after approval of the principal investigator, negotiate the terms of the lease document to the university Contracts Officer and the Vice President for Business and Administration for review and approval prior to final execution. The PMD will notify the PI of final arrangements.

Upon notification by PMD of the signed lease, submit the appropriate requisition. The requisition covering the lease should list the landlord as the suggested vendor, the location of the property to be leased, and the period of the lease, the monthly rental rate, any deposits, and the purpose of the lease. Attach a copy of the lease to the requisition form. The lease period should coincide with the period of the sponsored project. If the leasing period extends beyond the sponsored project period, the lease should contain a cancellation clause without penalty in the event that project funding is not renewed. Purchasing will make any required security deposits when the lease has been approved. The lessor will be asked to return all deposits directly to the Office of Sponsored Programs. Separate requisitions will be needed for the Property Management fee and for any utilities not provided by the lessor.

The lessee (PI) is responsible for notifying the Office of Sponsored Programs and university Property Management, in advance, of any request to change the status of the lease agreement and a minimum written 60-day notice prior to the end of the lease.

A purchase order will be issued covering the lease agreement after PMD, the Office of Sponsored Programs, and the lessee have come to an agreement on all terms of the lease and all necessary approvals have been obtained.

Ancillary Agreements

Purchases of items such as service agreements, leases for space or equipment, maintenance agreements, software license agreements, and vendor sales orders generally require that the Office of Sponsored Programs sign the vendor’s contract form (ancillary agreement) before the item/service is purchased. After the Office of Sponsored Programs and the vendor have agreed on the terms and conditions, the necessary signatures of both parties must be obtained before a purchase order can be issued. A person may be liable for signing unapproved /unauthorized purchases.

Purchases without Prior Authorization

In the event a commitment is made to a vendor without prior authorization from Purchasing, the principal investigator is still required to provide a 1303 requisition form and a letter of explanation with reasons for not following established procedures. Any requisition or invoice that has not been pre-authorized by Purchasing, if not supported by a letter of explanation for the after-the-fact purchase or payment request, may be returned to the initiator for an explanation. Exceptions to established purchasing policies and procedures may be appropriate if justified by special circumstances.

The individual and/or the individual’s department will be responsible for payment of the invoice in the event that the purchase is disallowed by the sponsor or by subsequent audit.

Reimbursement for Out-Of-Pocket Expenses

See PREP (Payment Request Entry Page) instructions.

Note that the university is tax exempt. When making a small purchase, advise the vendor not to charge state or federal tax. The vendor should be given the Office of Sponsored Programs Tax Exemption Number, 38-1746722, at the time of purchase.

Conferences and Meetings Sponsored by Projects

Requests for conference services should be submitted at least 90 days in advance of the conference date. This is necessary in order to allow sufficient time for securing reservations and meeting any competitive bidding requirements.

Any advance deposits required to hold reservations must be indicated on the vendor price quotation and requisition. Any prepayment request will require an invoice from the vendor. Submit the vendor’s invoice attached to the requisition form. Conferences or meetings costing in excess of $25,000 will be subject to the competitive bidding requirements.

Each university staff and student conference attendee on must complete and submit a Travel Request/Reimbursement Form, (GA-002). Non-employees who need reimbursement must complete and send a Payment Request for Non-Employee form (AC-219) to Office of Sponsored Programs Travel. Reimbursement for meals, lodging, and other costs included in the cost of the conference may not be claimed.

The following additional information must be provided before payment of any invoices:

  • List of all attendees and dates of their attendance
  • Detailed invoice must list the type of meals (breakfast, lunches, or dinners) served and the cost per meal per day
  • Invoices for rooms must indicate the date, number of nights, cost per room and name(s) of occupant(s)
  • Supporting documentation for any additional costs associated with the conference or meeting
  • PI approval for all invoices

The Ohio Board of Regents Purchases

The Office of Sponsored Programs processes all procurements utilizing funds from Action and Hayes Investment awards funded through by the Ohio Board of Regents (OBR). All such procurements require approval from the State Controlling Board prior to the issuance of a purchase order. This will add time to the procurement process. It is important to contact Purchasing as soon as you receive notification of an OBR award to begin planning your procurements.