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Purchasing Procedures and Dollar Thresholds

Updated 05/03/2024

All purchases require Budget Officer approval.  The dollar amount of the procurement governs the approval required to commit University funds.

Please review the current Expenditure Guidelines.

The following rules apply:

  • Budget Officers, or their authorized designee, may purchase unrestricted items up to $9,999 without the involvement of the Purchasing Office. The $9,999 limit applies to any order to a single vendor and includes all shipping, handling or other charges. Orders $10,000 and over must be submitted to the Purchasing Office as a requisition.
  • Purchases between $20,000 and $100,000 require 3 or more quotes submitted along with the requisition (including at least one quote from a certified diverse vendor).  See additional information here:
  • The Purchasing Office has authority, with the Budget Officer’s approval, to purchase up to $50,000 of merchandise or services.
  • Purchases between $50,000 and $500,000 must have the concurrence of the President of Illinois State University. The Purchasing Office seeks this approval.
  • Contracts of $250,000 or more must have full signature approvals (from General Counsel, Vice President of Finance and Planning, and the President). The Purchasing Office seeks this approval.
  • The Board of Trustees must approve purchases over $500,000. The appropriate Vice President’s Office will prepare the Board resolution for the President's office to submit for approval at the Board of Trustees meeting.
  • A Budget Officer or their authorized staff may make purchases up to $9,999 without the assistance of the Purchasing Office. Exceptions to this authorization are listed here:  If a vendor requests a hard copy purchase order for purchases under $10,000, departments may contact Purchasing about receiving pre-approval to submit a requisition.
  • Stringing, or placing the same small order multiple times to avoid the $9,999 limit, is prohibited.