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The procurement office of Howard Community College is responsible for the legal, technical, and administrative sufficiency of college purchasing contracts and, as necessary, will seek legal or risk management advice to fulfill this responsibility.  Only the director of procurement, or another duly authorized designee, may enter into a procurement contract or execute a contract modification on behalf of the college for procurements.  The director of procurement will receive approvals from appropriate individuals prior to signing.   The president will sign all purchasing contracts $500,000 or more after the director of procurement and the appropriate vice presidents have reviewed and approved.  All documents and contracts must be forwarded to the procurement office for review and approval prior to the purchase of goods or services.

In addition to the issuance of a purchase order, a contract will be signed when there is an agreement as to price or quantity for the purchase of goods to be delivered over a period of time.  A contract will also be signed for all services that will be performed for the college.  The purpose of the contract is to ensure that the contractor’s total performance is in accordance with the terms and conditions of the agreement.  The integrity of the college’s purchasing system demands that the goods or services are furnished as specified in the contract.  In all contracts, there will be no conflict or appearance of conflict between the contracting party and the college.  Strict compliance with contract requirements is necessary.

Contract administration authority is delegated to the appropriate cost center manager.  Only through continual active involvement of contract administrators, working in partnership with the procurement office, will the college’s contractual performance goals be achieved.  If a potential dispute arises with a contractor, the procurement office should be notified at the earliest possible moment and should be involved in all future transactions under that contract.

The college will not enter into any contract where any part of the compensation is based on a cost-plus-a-percentage-of-cost of the work performed or goods provided.

When it is in the best interest of the college, a multiyear contract may be authorized by the director of procurement.  Some instances when a multiyear contract would be appropriate include:

  • obtaining uninterrupted services extending over more than one year or contract term is appropriate;
  • the performance of services involve high start-up costs;
  • a continuous source of supply over a multiyear or term period is required; or
  • a changeover of services involves high phase-in/phase-out costs during a transition period. 

All multiyear contracts will include a termination clause that states that the contract will be cancelled automatically if funds are not appropriated or otherwise made available to support continuation of performance in any fiscal period succeeding the first. 

Policy Manual Review/Revision:   05/08/15