Central Purchasing Act Exemptions

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Summary of Policy Considerations

Policy Considerations

The Legislature may consider the following policy changes:

  • Clarify within statute the Central Purchasing Director shall review all exempt purchases to ensure they are validly within the claimed exemption. 
  • Require the director of OMES to report violations of statute found by the audit team to the Attorney General’s office and legislative leadership. 
  • Require agencies using exemptions to post purchases publicly, similar to what is currently publicly available for P-card purchases. 
  • Require OMES to send a consolidated report to the Legislature of agencies that have violated statute related to agency acquisitions. 
  • To ensure independence of the Audit Team, remove this function from under the oversight of the Central Purchasing Division.
  • Authorize the purchasing Audit Team to review purchases taking place outside of the Central Purchasing Act. 
  • Require Central Purchasing’s audits be made publicly available on a State website.
  • Require Central Purchasing to track time from agency request to purchase completion for all procurements as a key performance metric.
  • Statutorily require that all audits performed by the Audit team are full procurement audits, which are to include expenditures by P-cards but not be limited to just P-card expenditures.
  • Evaluate all existing exemptions within statute to determine if they are still necessary in light of recent increases in agency purchasing limits. 
  • Require sunset dates with the enactment of any future exemptions.
  • Require agency Central Purchasing Officers to maintain a record of exemption approvals, to include identification of the CPO and the date of approval. 
  • Centralize all exemptions, both complete exemptions from the Central Purchasing Act and specific purchase exceptions, under the same section of statute. 
  • Create mandatory penalties within statute for agencies found by the purchasing Audit Team to be in violation of the Central Purchasing Act. These could include violations for purchase cards, competitive bidding, split purchasing, internal purchasing procedures, and improper exemption usage. 
  • Require that internal purchasing procedures be approved by the State Purchasing Director every two years and create penalties for violations. 

Summary of Agency Recommendations

Agency Considerations

The Office of of Management and Enterprise Services should:

  • Create a process by which the Central Purchasing Division reviews all purchase requests exceeding an agency’s authorized spending thresholds to confirm whether a purchase is subject to the Central Purchasing Act or exempt from it. 
  • Update its compliance processes by creating a dedicated entry field within the Statewide accounting system to cite the authority for the exemption, a description of the item that qualifies for the exemption, and a process by which Central Purchasing confirms the agency is properly applying the exemption.
  • Update CPO training to include training on proper use of agency exemptions.
  • Make publicly available a plan to accomplish the auditing mandate issued in Executive Order 2023-04.
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