Finance and Administration Policies
Contracts Guidance Policy
The College has developed a formalized Contract Policy that outlines who is an authorized signor and the activities required to obtain contracts.
- Contract signing authority: the Vice President for Finance and Administration and Treasurer (VPFA), and designated representatives of the VPFA, are the only employees authorized by the Board of Trustees to execute contracts on behalf of the College. Contracts and commitments in excess of $100,000 may also require the approval of the Board of Trustees.
- All contracts should be sent to the VPFA office for review and approval. The VPFA, General Counsel, and Risk Management may also be involved in the contract review process.
- All contracts require review regardless of the dollar amount associated with the agreement.
- Standard College contract templates exist for many standard campus activities. The development of agreements for real estate, insurance, software and networking, and contracted services for facilities and other work requires prior approval of the VPFA office.
- It is critical that a full review occur prior to negotiating and entering into a contract to ensure: (a) the College is limiting its liability by having legal counsel review, as necessary; (b) appropriate contract clauses are present; (c) the College has appropriate resources to satisfy the contract terms; (d) proper treatment for tax purposes; (e) protection of students' rights; (f) third party vendors have background checks, as appropriate, and (g) the contract does not represent a conflict of interest for the College.
- All contracts must be reviewed and signed before the commencement of services or the delivery of goods by the outside party.
- Negotiation of favorable pricing and competitive bidding:
- When securing pricing for a contract arrangement, efforts should be made to secure favorable pricing for the College as part of the agreement negotiation process.
- Under competitive bidding, multiple vendor pricing proposals, or bids, should be secured before selecting the final vendor. Competitive bidding for goods and services is required for agreements with dollar values in excess of $25,000; for major capital projects, competitive bidding is required for agreements with dollar values in excess of $100,000.
- If the outside party is expected to have any unsupervised contact with F&M students or minors, a current criminal background check is required or a College employee must be present during the course of the contract engagement.
Contracts should be in place for the following activities but not limited to:
- Facilities that are rented by the College or rented from the College including no fee, or $0, rentals;
- Professional services provided to the College or provided by the College, including consulting, speaking engagements, legal assistance, equipment, software maintenance, etc.;
- Leases of equipment;
- Exchange of goods or services involving or not involving money; and
- Grant agreements.
For Templates and Instructions when Processing a Contract, please refer to the Finance Page on MyDiplomat. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
Policy Maintained by: Finance and Administration, Vice President for Finance and Administration
Last Reviewed: August 31, 2019