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Office of General Counsel Policies & Guidelines

Purchasing Policy : 4:02:10:00

Policy/Guideline Area

Business and Finance Policies

Applicable Divisions

TCATs, Community Colleges, Universities, System Office


To ensure efficiency, fairness, transparency and maximum level of competition in the procurement of goods and services for the Tennessee Board of Regents System.


  • Institution – means any of the universities, community colleges, colleges of applied technology and System Office departments within the Tennessee Board of Regents.
  • System Office – the administrative offices of the Tennessee Board of Regents.


  1.  Purchasing Authority
    1. The authority to approve procurements of goods and services is delineated in TBR Policy 1:03:02:10.
  2. General Procurement Policies
    1. Procurement Generally
      1. Procurements of goods or services shall be in compliance with all applicable federal and state requirements and TBR Policies and Guidelines.
      2. All procurement of goods and services shall be based upon the principle of competitive bidding except when an alternate procurement method is justified in writing and approved by the appropriate authority, as required by TBR Policy 1-03-02-10.
      3. A complete record shall be maintained of each procurement transaction to provide a clear audit trail.
    2. Procurement Guideline
      1. The Office of Business and Finance and the Office of General Counsel in conjunction with the Council of Buyers shall maintain a procurement guideline, which may be in electronic format, setting forth all processes and procedures for the procurement of goods and services to ensure that all procurements are in compliance with federal and state laws, regulations, and all applicable TBR Policies and Guidelines.
      2. All Institutional procurements shall be in compliance with the procurement guideline.
      3. Each Institution shall maintain a procurement guideline, which may be in electronic format, setting forth any procedures of the Institution in addition to or necessary to comply with this Policy.
  3. Council of Buyers
    1. The Chancellor has established a Council of Buyers that shall be chaired by the Chief Procurement Officer for the TBR System Office and shall be comprised of at least one (1) procurement representative from each university and community college and three (3) regional representatives from the Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology who shall be appointed by the Chancellor or designee.
    2. The Council should meet quarterly, or at minimum semi-annually, or upon request of the Chancellor or designee.
    3. The Council of Buyers shall develop procurement initiatives, procedures and recommendations which shall be submitted to the Chancellor or designee, related to the following:
      1. Development of uniform procedures, forms, and general conditions governing procurements which may be feasible and practicable for use by all Institutions.
      2. Strategic sourcing initiatives to foster cooperation and cost savings efficiencies.
      3. Consideration of the feasibility and advantages of term contracts for the System and of designation of certain Institutions as responsible procurement agents for specific materials, supplies, equipment, and/or services for the System.
      4. Formulation of a uniform code of ethics for governing the professional conduct of employees responsible for procurement.
      5. Any other matters referred to the Council by the Chancellor or designee.
  4. Exceptions
    1. The Chancellor or designee may approve exceptions to the requirements of this Policy in appropriate cases.


Source: TBR Meetings, March 5, 1976; June 30, 1978; December 12, 1980; September 18, 1981; June 25, 1982; September 30, 1983; September 20, 1985 ; December 4, 1987; June 24, 1988; June 30, 1989; September 22, 1989; September 21, 1990; June 28, 1991; June 25, 1993; September 23, 1994; September 20, 1996, March 7, 1997, December 5, 1997; March 27, 1998, December 4, 1998; June 28, 2002; June 27, 2003, April 2, 2004; September 30, 2005; December 8, 2006; March 30, 2007; June 29, 2007; September 28, 2007; March 28, 2008; December 4, 2008; June 19, 2009; TBR Board Meeting September 25, 2009. Revisions to Exhibts: 9/13. March 30, 2016: Complete policy revision and renaming (changed from Purchasing Policies and Procedures) 

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