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Purchasing Policy

Issuing Office: Division of Business & Finance, Controller's Office
Contact Info: Ken Mullen, Controller

Ronda Marr, Purchasing Manager
Date Issued: January 1, 2011

Also refer to Business Policies & Procedures

The University of the Pacific (Pacific) is committed to extending offers to participate in contracts and purchases for goods and services to a wide range of suppliers. It is not only Pacific's policy, but its vision and commitment, to forge supplier relationships reflective of the cultural diversity of Pacific that lead to positive developments in its surrounding communities. Pacific's policy also reflects the critical importance of small and woman/minority-owned businesses to economic and community development. Finally, this policy reflects Pacific's deep commitment to sustainability and the importance of sustainability considerations in vendor selection.

All Pacific staff involved in purchasing decisions share responsibility for ensuring compliance with this policy.

To following summarizes the key components of the policy:

  • Goal of 15% of all purchase made through SBCs
  • Inclusion of nondiscrimination clause in all competitive solicitations
  • Goal of 15% SBC participation for each capital construction project
  • Goal of 25% of local business participation for solicitation of goods/services
  • Minimum standard of 30% PCW for all paper used
  • Elimination of virgin paper
  • Departments are encouraged to reduce paper output
  • Departments are encouraged to use environmentally preferable products
  • Purchase or lease vehicle selection criteria shall include reduction of greenhouse gas, emissions, nonrenewable energy use, reduced air pollution, and encouraging market development
  • Commitment to conserve water resources

The policy includes the following sections:

I. Commitment to Supplier Diversity
II. Commitment to Local Suppliers
III. Commitment to Sustainability

I. Commitment to Supplier Diversity

In conjunction with Pacific's overall commitment to diversity and inclusion, this policy is to promote and increase business opportunities for small business concerns, including small business concerns controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals and firms certified as minority and/or women-owned business enterprises.

Supplier Diversity Policy Guidelines:

A. Policies Applicable to All Purchases

1. The US Small Business Administration revises its programs for small business concerns controlled by socially and economically-disadvantaged individuals from time to time. The current list of federally designated business concerns includes the following categories that should be considered when purchasing on behalf of Pacific:

  1. Small businesses, as defined by SBA size standards for each industry
  2. Small disadvantaged businesses, which must be federally certified
  3. Woman-owned small businesses, meeting the SBA standards and which "self-certify" as to ownership
  4. HUBzone businesses, located in census tracts of low income/high unemployment, and which must be federally certified
  5. Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Institutions
  6. Veteran-owned small businesses, which self-certify as to ownership
  7. Service disabled veteran small businesses, which self-certify as to ownership

The above categories of business concerns shall be identified collectively throughout this Policy statement as "small business concerns" or as "SBCs."

2. Pacific encourages participation in all of its contracts by SBCs. Participation may be either on a direct basis in response to solicitations/invitations to bid, or as a subcontractor to a bidder/proposer. Unless required by federal statutes, regulations, grants, or contract terms referenced in the contract documents, no preference will be included in the evaluation of the bids/proposals, no minimum level of SBC participation shall be required as a condition of receiving an award, and bids/proposals will not be rejected or considered non-responsive on that basis.

3. Pacific supports and relies on self-classification of SBC firms on its Vendor Information Form. SBC businesses can be identified through various sources, including the U.S. Small Business Administration.

4. Pacific aspires to have 15% of all purchases made through SBCs, regardless of source of funds. The Purchasing department is responsible for tracking and monitoring of the ongoing success of the program. Pacific staff involved with purchasing opportunities will increase their outreach efforts to SBCs. Special efforts will be targeted for underrepresented businesses, including:

  1. Pacific will solicit participation by SBCs in providing for material, supply, equipment, and service needs. Advertisements will include a provision encouraging participation by certified firms and other small businesses whenever such firms can be identified.
  2. Providing SBCs and other small businesses that express an interest in participating with adequate and timely information about plans, specifications, and requirements of the solicitation.
  3. To promote increased SBC opportunities, Pacific will participate in trade shows, conferences, educational seminars and training sessions in order to broaden communication between the Pacific and potential SBCs.
  4. Utilizing the services of available minority community organizations, minority contractor groups, local minority assistance offices and organizations that provide assistance in the recruitment of SBC and other small businesses whenever feasible.

5. Pacific will include the following clause in its competitive solicitations:

Non-Discrimination: Contractors, Bidders and Proposers shall not create barriers to open and fair opportunities for all businesses including SBCs to participate in contracts and to obtain or compete for contracts and subcontracts as sources of supplies, equipment, construction and services. In considering offers from, and doing business with, subcontractors and suppliers, the Contractor shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, sex, age, nationality, marital status, or the presence of any mental or physical disability in an otherwise qualified disabled person.

B. Policies Applicable to Capital Construction Contracts

1. Voluntary goals are established for each capital construction project, and are typically 15% for SBCs whenever practicable.

2. Contractors on capital construction projects will be encouraged to include outreach and affirmative efforts to include SBCs as subcontractors or suppliers. In addition, contractors may be asked to:

  1. Break down total requirements into smaller tasks or quantities, where economically feasible, in order to permit maximum participation by SBCs and other small businesses.
  2. Each contractor may be asked to submit a list of all SBC subcontractors and suppliers it intends to use. Prior to final acceptance of a project, the contractor may be asked to submit a report of the total dollar amounts paid to SBCs.

C. Policies Applicable to Purchased Goods and Services

1. To encourage direct SBC participation whenever practicable, and to invite participation by subcontractors when possible, a combined voluntary goal of 15% SBC participation will be included in solicitations for purchased goods and services. Certain purchased goods and services may not generally lend themselves to small distributor opportunities, in that Pacific buys direct from the larger source of supply.

2. Pacific departments are authorized to make their own purchase decisions for most purchases, but are encouraged to consult with the Purchasing department to identify SBC firms available to provide goods and services for necessary purchases. Departments are encouraged to identify SBC firms for consideration and to share the recommendations with Purchasing.

3. Pacific is committed to developing a mechanism to track SBC firms included in solicitations, their response, and award of contracts to SBCs. Other contractors who include SBCs as subcontractors may be asked to identify certified firms in their bids/proposals, and report the total dollar amounts paid to SBCs prior to final payment of the contract.

II. Commitment to Local Suppliers

This program is designed to pursue business opportunities with local community businesses, on a direct-supplier basis or in strategic partnerships with major regional and national firms. Supporting local businesses helps to keep jobs and money in our community, and reduces the emissions generated by transporting goods across the country.

Local Supplier Policy Guidelines:

1. For purposes of this policy, local supplier is defined as a business within the county in which the campus is located:

Stockton - San Joaquin County
McGeorge School of Law - Sacramento County
Dugoni School of Dentistry - San Francisco County

2. To encourage local business participation whenever practicable, Pacific aspires to a voluntary goal of 25% local business participation for solicitation of goods and services.

3. To fulfill this commitment Pacific will do the following:

  1. Educate Pacific staff involved with purchasing by informing them of Pacific's commitment to supporting local suppliers.
  2. Provide opportunities to local suppliers capable of performing the work, encouraging their participation in Pacific contracts and purchasing opportunities.
  3. Provide local suppliers that express an interest participating with adequate and timely information about plans, specification and requirements of the solicitation.

4. The Pacific Purchasing Office will track and report the success of the program.

III. Commitment to Sustainability

Pacific acknowledges that the purchase and use of products and services can profoundly impact the environment and recognizes the positive impact it can make on the environment through its purchasing decisions. Sustainable purchasing requires that purchasers take into consideration the impact of products on the environment and human health when making purchasing decisions, giving preference to more environmentally friendly products when quality and cost are equal or superior.

Sustainability Policy Guidelines:

1. Energy Efficient Appliances and Equipment

Pacific is committed to the use of sustainable practices in the conduct of Pacific operations. To this end, energy efficiency, as well as short-term and long-term cost, must be evaluated when purchasing energy consuming appliances/equipment. All appliances/equipment purchased by the Pacific must be ENERGY STAR, if such approval exists for the type of appliance/equipment being purchased.

The Environmental Protection Agency ENERGY STAR Program identified appliances and equipment that meet specific energy efficiency requirements ( These items include heating and cooling equipment, computers, computer peripherals, printers, copy machines, audiovisual equipment, projectors, televisions, washers, dryers, cooking appliances, and refrigerators.

EPEAT is a (Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool) system that helps purchasers evaluate, compare and select electronic products based on their environmental attributes ( The system currently covers desktop and laptop computers, thin clients, workstations and computer monitors

2. Paper

Pacific sustainable paper use guidelines are consistent with the Pacific's policy on sustainability and will help us achieve our broader sustainability goals.

Pacific is phasing out the use of virgin paper and conforms to a minimum standards of 30% post consumer waste (PCW) recycled content paper for all paper used in copiers and printers.

Pacific encourages offices and departments to adopt a higher standard (50%, 75%, 100%) post-consumer recycled content paper where appropriate.

To reduce paper usage, Pacific encourages departments to:

  1. Scan documents when practicable
  2. To fully utilize double sided printing capacity in printers and copiers

Pacific also commits to developing a mechanism to report on paper usage by category (e.g., virgin, 30% PCW, etc.) and by department.

3. Reduced Waste and Recycled Products

Pacific is committed to sustainable resource use. The amount of waste generated by shipping, receiving, packaging, and use of products or equipment must be evaluated during the purchase process. In addition to waste reduction, purchases should consider recycled or remanufactured products. A recycled product is a product manufactured with waste material that has been recovered or diverted from solid waste. Recycled material may be derived from post consumer waste (material that has served its intended end-use and been discarded by a final consumer), industrial scrap, manufacturing waste, or other waste that would otherwise have been wasted. A remanufactured product is one that is used for the purpose then repaired, refilled, or otherwise brought to "new" condition, e.g. printer cartridges that are refilled.

Pacific will work to purchase Green Seal certified products when practicable.

Some of the qualities of environmentally preferable products are:

  1. Products made of recycled materials, maximizing post-consumer content
  2. Durable and/or reusable products as opposed to single use, customized or disposable items
  3. Products that are recyclable or compostable at the time of disposal
  4. Products shipped with minimal packaging (consistent with care of product), preferably made of recycled and/or recyclable materials
  5. Products produced locally minimizing transportation distances

Examples of some environmentally preferable products are:

  1. Compact fluorescent lamps (with Energy Star Seal on package)
  2. Re-crushed cement aggregate and asphalt
  3. Cement and asphalt concrete containing glass cullet, recycled fiber, plastic or tire rubber
  4. Remanufactured tires and products made from recycled tire rubber
  5. Re-refined lubrication and hydraulic oils as certified by the American Petroleum Institute (API) as appropriate for use on equipment

4. Vehicles

Pacific is committed to implementing an efficient and effective economic and environmental strategy for campus fleets. Campuses shall implement practicable and cost-effective measures, including the purchase of:

  1. Hybrid electric vehicles, which combine an internal combustion engine with a battery and electric motor to maximize fuel economy and produce fewer e missions
  2. Electric and/or solar vehicles
  3. Vehicles that use compressed natural gas, methanol, ethanol or propane as a
    cleaner alternative to gasoline
  4. Vehicles with best-in-class fuel efficiency

Upon determination of the need to purchase or lease a vehicle selection criteria shall include reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, nonrenewable energy use, reduced air pollution, and encouraging market development.

5. Water

Pacific will apply the best practicable means to conserve water resources and minimize waste water, including, but not necessarily limited to use of:

  1. Water efficient fittings including aerators, flow controllers, high efficiency shower heads and pressure control valves
  2. Low flow bathroom fixtures
  3. Efficient HVAC units to reduce amount of chilled water required
  4. Water-saving techniques where possible e.g. mulch, new generation fertilizers, native plants, efficient sprinklers, efficient placement of sprinklers and use of non-potable groundwater and optimal water efficiency wherever possible, ensuring grounds are not overwatered

6. Biodegradable Products

Pacific is committed to reducing risks to health, safety, and the environment by using biodegradable purchasing practices, including, but not limited to:

  1. Refraining from procurement of cleaning or disinfecting products (i.e. for janitorial or automotive use) containing carcinogens, mutagens, or teratogens. Chemicals to avoid are listed by the U.S. EPA or the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.
  2. Phase out of chlorofluorocarbon-containing refrigerants, solvents and similar products.
  3. Procurement of readily biodegradable surfactants and detergents that do not contain phosphates.

7. Green Buildings (LEED)

The Board of Regents adopted a resolution directing that effective January 1, 2010, Pacific will secure at a minimum Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating SystemTM "Silver" rating or its equivalent for all new buildings, and will secure an estimate of the full cost to secure a LEED "Silver" (or its equivalent) for all proposed renovation projects costing at least $1 million, and will strive to meet this standard within project budget restraints.

Related policies

Business Policies & Procedures:     Procurement

Signature Authority Policy

Information available on the Internet

The following information is available on the Internet at

  • Vendor DDA Authorization Form