Business Office

Affiliated departments and school

Changes in Procurement Rules, Effective July 1, 2010

To: Deans, Directors, and Department Heads
From: Maxine Sandretto, Assistant Vice President for Business and Finance
Subject: Changes in Procurement Procedures Effective July 1, 2010
Changes in the Illinois State Procurement Code effective July 1, 2010, will significantly impact procurement procedures at the University of Illinois. The following important changes are known at this time; additional information will be provided as it becomes available.


State law and University policy require that a contract and/or purchase order be issued in advance of receiving goods and/or services. Purchase orders and contracts serve many purposes, including supporting the issuance of payments to vendors. A non-conforming order is a purchase request or contract submitted after goods and/or services have been solicited or received. New procedures are now being implemented for non-conforming orders. In the future, before payment will be authorized for a non-conforming order, department heads will need to submit a letter to the Purchasing Division describing the circumstances for the order, and the vendor will be required to sign a release form. Non-conforming orders are out of compliance with law and policy, and in certain cases, especially those involving state funded purchases, the University may not be able to process payment for a non-conforming order.

Please inform all faculty and staff in your unit of the need to provide their business office as much notice as possible for anticipated purchases. Depending upon the type of purchase, a business office may need a few hours, a few days, or several months to comply with state law and University policy. For example, it can take only a few minutes to place an order with a vendor with whom the University already has a contract, such as a vendor with a catalog in the University's online shopping application known as iBuy. However, it can take months to purchase goods and services that require a competitive solicitation (such as the purchase of expensive research equipment or consulting services).


Public hearings must now be held for all sole source purchases above the bid limit prior to the award being made to a vendor. A sole source purchase is a purchase of goods and services determined to be available from only one provider. The new requirement for a public hearing for these purchases will necessitate an additional two or three weeks of advance notice to the Purchasing Division. OBFS Sole Source Purchases.


As provided in the amended Procurement Code, the Executive Ethics Commission of the State of Illinois has recently appointed a Chief Procurement Officer (CPO) for Higher Education. The CPO will "exercise all procurement authority created by the Code" including appointing a State Purchasing Officer (SPO) for each campus. The role of the SPO is defined as exercising procurement authority at the direction of the CPO. In addition, the SPO is required to act independently (not from the direction of the University). The SPO will review all purchases to oversee compliance with all applicable laws and policies and ensure expenditures are "in the best interest of the State of Illinois".

These structural changes and other requirements of the revised Code will likely add to the processing time for many purchases, and units should be prepared to answer questions about purchase requests that have not been asked in the past. The Purchasing Division will make every effort to streamline the new procedural requirements; however, more than ever, please plan ahead to avoid delays that could negatively impact research and operations in your unit.

Additional details about procedures related to non-conforming orders, sole source procurements, and other changes will be provided to business offices. If you have questions, please contact Mike Devocelle, Director of Contracts and Purchases, or Cathy Reisner, Senior Associate Director of Purchasing, at 333-3505.

Business Office
School of Chemical Sciences
338 Noyes Lab
MC-712 Box D-3
600 South Mathews Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801
Monday thru Friday
8:00 am to 4:30 pm

Please send comments and suggestions to:
scs-procreimb [at] scs [dot] illinois [dot] edu

For accounting and grants questions, contact
scsgrants [at] scs [dot] illinois [dot] edu