Limits increases as purchasing policy amended
By Dana Casadei
An amended purchasing policy was unanimously approved by the Bloomfield Township Board of Trustees at its meeting on Monday, November 27.
While some of the changes simply cleaned up the policy’s language, the most significant changes were about increasing two of the limits for when a purchase order is needed.
Jason Theis, township finance director, said that he worked with numerous departments within the township and discussed purchasing policies with other communities before adding these amendments. Inflation also played a role in his proposed amendments.
Under the current policy, a purchase order is required for purchases between $1,505 to $4,999, and purchases or contracts costing between $5,000 to $34,999 are competitive and require the solicitation of a minimum of three price quotations.
Under Theis’ proposed changes, a purchase order will not be required for anything less than $5,000, a large leap from what it had been at – anything under $1,000 – but will be required for purchases costing from $5,000 to $9,999. Those considered competitive and needing multiple quotes will now only be needed for purchases between $10,000 to $34,999.
Theis said he was comfortable leaving a formal competition bid needed for purchases of $35,000 or more, which supervisor Dani Walsh agreed with.
His work was highlighted by Walsh, who thanked him for all he had done on this.
She also said that right now a purchasing order goes through four people – herself, Theis, the person who requested it, and the department head, often slowing down purchases for under $1,500.
“There’s a lot of checks and balances along the way,” she said.
Throughout his research, Theis said it was clear many other places had not made these types of adjustments, especially when it came to formal bids, with many communities requiring them for purchases starting as low as $10,000.
Theis noted that while this purchasing policy was amended in 2021, prior to that it had been almost 15 years since it had been. He said that he hoped to make this more of a regular occurrence.