Bid Policies

It is the policy of the CSU that all transactions made under the CSU procurement authority are designed to encourage active competition among those who wish to become the suppliers of goods and services required by the campuses of the CSU There is no single competitive procurement methodology universally suited to all categories of ITR acquisition. The CSU also recognizes that the same competitive processes used for obtaining non-ITR goods and services such as the Invitation for Bid, and the Request for Proposal, are effective for ITR acquisitions. There are, however, other techniques that may be tailored to support the unique characteristics of an ITR acquisition.

Contract awards for all large-scale systems integration projects shall be based on the proposal that provides the most value-effective solution to CSU's requirements. However, hardware purchased independent of a large-scale system integration project may be made on the basis of lowest cost meeting all other specifications. When an acquisition is based upon cost alone, an award shall be made to the lowest responsible bidder meeting the specifications. [Ref. 12102(b,c)]


The best value methodology for ITR acquisitions of goods and services shall be used to the maximum extent practical. Any solicitation which employs best value selection criteria shall be awarded to the respondent that provides the most value-effective based on life-cycle costing solution to the CSU's requirements. There is no specific formula or methodology for conducting a best value determination, but it is important that the award is consistent with the terms of the solicitation and that any price premium is justified by specific technical or value-added enhancements. The solicitation document may provide for the evaluation and award of the contract based on factors other than acquisition cost.

Solicitations for best value acquisitions may provide that costs be submitted under separate sealed cover for evaluation purposes.


Informal price quotations/proposals must be obtained on all purchases for goods and services where the dollar amount exceeds $10,000 and is less than $50,000 unless reasonableness of price can be determined without competition. Except in cases when it has been determined that only one source will meet the needs of the University, all purchases for goods or services in the amount of $50,000 or more shall be formally solicited and awarded to the lowest responsible bidder(s).

Acquisitions Less than $250,000 from California Certified Small Business or Disabled Veteran

-Owned Business Enterprise (DVBE)

This is called the Small Business / DVBE Option. Acquisitions of personal property that are estimated to be less than $250,000 may be awarded to a Certified Small Business or DVBE, as long as the campus obtains price quotations from two or more Certified Small Businesses or two or more DVBE’s as referenced in

Acquisitions Less than $50,000

Acquisitions for personal property that are estimated to be less than $50,000 may be awarded when the price has been determined to have met fair and reasonable standards. The attainment of the standard of “fair and reasonable” may be determined by, but not be limited to, one of the following techniques:

· Catalog or Market Price – The price offered is supported by an established and verifiable catalog or market pricing medium issued by a responsible supplier and/or through an established reputable forum. In addition, the pricing structure provided is one that a prudent buyer would accept as a reasonable representation of existing market value.

· Price Comparison – A buyer has obtained quotes or offers within the last 6-month period from other responsible suppliers who provide evidence that a price obtained is deemed fair and reasonable.

· Historical Pricing – A buyer is able to demonstrate that other transactions occurring in the past 18 months show prices for similar acquisitions, which provides evidence that a price obtained is deemed fair and reasonable.

· Controlled Pricing – Law or regulation sets the price offered.

Acquisitions Equal to or Greater than $50,000 and Equal to or Less than $100,000

Acquisitions of personal property that are estimated to be equal to or greater than $50,000, and equal to or less than $100,000 may be the result of an informal non-advertised solicitation process. The informal solicitation must be based on a written project scope documenting the requirements and characteristics the goods must possess in order for the proposal to be responsive. Written or verbal responses based on the project scope must be obtained from at least three vendors. If less than three responses are received, campuses must document that sufficient outreach and diligence was undertaken before waiving the requirement for three responses.

Contracts shall be awarded based on the proposal that provides the most value- effective solution to the CSU’s requirements. Verbal quotes must be documented. If the award is other than to the lowest priced proposal, campuses shall document the value-based determination for making the award.

Acquisitions Greater than $100,000

Contracts for personal property greater than $100,000 shall be awarded as the result of a formal solicitation process. The formal solicitation shall comply with all requirements for formal solicitation of goods, as applicable, per ICSUAM Policy 5000 Series.

Use of DVBE or California Certified Small Businesses

Efforts shall be made to procure goods from and meet the goals established for DVBE’s or California Certified Small Businesses as set forth in ICSUAM Policy 5215.00 and 5216.00 respectively.  Other requirements notwithstanding, formal bidding shall comply with the following:

Public Notice-Advertisement in California State Contracts Register (CSCR) - contracts for services in excess of fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), we will advertise in the CSCR the availability of the solicitation and interested suppliers, upon request, shall be furnished with the copies of the solicitation. We may advertise when goods in excess of fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) are contracted.

In addition to advertising in the CSCR, Cal State Los Angeles shall also:

  • In a location easily accessible to the public, post a copy of the solicitation, which shall remain posted until seven days after an award has been made.
  • Maintain complete copies of the solicitation in the Purchasing Office to be made available to an interested supplier upon request.
  • California State Contracts Register (CSCR) which may be reached via the web at
  • Compliance News
  • Daily Journal
  • BidSync