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Purchasing Reference Sheet

Section 1. General Purchasing Reference FAQ
Section 2. Convenience Copy and Other Services FAQ
Section 3. Federally Funded Purchasing FAQ

Purchasing Staff & Office Location:

  • Grace Martinez - Purchasing Technician (Notary Public): EXT. 8228
  • Purchasing Administrative Support – TigerCard Office: EXT 7825
  • Purchasing Office reports to: Paul Wright; EXT 7878
  • We are located at Parker Chapel, Room 107

Section 1: General Purchasing Quick Reference

How Do I start the purchasing process?

Be aware of ethical considerations and potential conflicts of interest.  Anyone responsible for any aspect of purchasing on behalf of Trinity University (TU) should complete the Code of Conduct Statement and submit to the department’s Vice President’s Office.

Check TU Surplus Property

Check to see if the goods you are seeking are available through TU Surplus Property.  The Surplus room is located in Prassel Room 010.  There is visitor parking in the Physical Plant parking garage, 2nd floor. Schedule an appointment with the Purchasing Office, Purchasing [at] for access to the room.

Once you identify surplus property your department can use, you may initiate the request to transfer to your department by completing a TU 006 form,

How do I process a purchase between $0 - $4,999.99 (Non-federal grant funds)?

Departments have direct departmental purchasing authority for purchases up to $5,000 and may place these orders directly with the vendor. A requisition is not required. All receipts for orders should be forwarded to Accounts Payable. Federally funded purchases must follow COFAR Policy requirements. Please refer to Approval Process #5 for Federal Grant procurement

Departments are not authorized to make capital equipment purchases regardless of the amount. See Capital Equipment Purchases under the Finance and Administration Policy link.

Computer related items: All requisitions submitted to FSC for computers, software and related items (printers, scanners, monitors, etc.) from all areas of the University must be processed through and approved by the Director of Information Technology Services (ITS).

Purchasing Card (Pcard) purchases:  For purchases up to $5,000, the purchasing card is the preferred method of payment. The Purchasing Card (Pcard) Program is designed to streamline the order and payment process for purchases of $5,000 or less in total cost, including shipping, delivery and installation. Other forms of payment including invoice billing, check requests and petty cash transactions should be used only when payment by the Pcard is not accepted by the vendor.

How do I apply for a Purchasing Card (Pcard)?

Contact the Accounts Payable Office, located in Parker Chapel, Suite 102-104 & 107.  Their forms are located in the Trinity University Google Drive, search FSC Forms.

How do I process a purchase between $5,000 - $25,000 (Non-federal grant funds)?

All orders exceeding $5,000 must be processed through FSC with a TU requisition so that a purchase order (PO) can be processed. 

A TU requisition is required for any purchase over $5,000. See Section D in Purchasing Policy & Procedures for preparation of Grants requisition and Section E for TU requisition preparation. The chairman or director, or designee will approve the TU requisition by signature and date then forward to the FSC Office for processing to ensure all appropriate signatures required are obtained. If the expenditure is related to a grant reference FAQ from the Office of Management and Budget under the Trinity University Purchasing Policy.

Where can I find the Trinity University Requisition Form

The TU requisition and several other forms are available in the T-Mail, Google Drive. Search, FSC Forms.

How do I process a purchase for $25,000+ (Non-federal grant fund)?

Purchases for supplies and equipment over $25,000 utilizing Trinity University Budgeted funds (Non-Federal grant funds):  Procurement from the University allocated Capital Equipment Funds and Departmental S&E accounts require three (3) competitive quotes for all purchases in excess of $25,000. Purchases made from University approved Purchasing Coops such as: E&I, TXMas, TCPN, Higher Educational programs do not require competitive quotes, since the governing board of these agencies have already completed the competitive pricing. Facility Services Capital Improvement Projects are excluded from the competitive bidding process, under Purchasing Guidelines. Sole Source procurement from a specified vendor will be considered following the completion and submission of sole source documentation. Sole Source requests and documentation are to be attached to the original purchase requisition along with a vendor quote and all other documentation supporting the proposed procurement. If the cost of merchandise is unknown, send a fax to Ext. 8229 or email the Purchasing Office at: Purchasing [at] specifying the exact requirements and suggested source, if known. The Purchasing Office will obtain a quote and advise the department.

Where do I find Purchasing Coops affiliated with Trinity University?

A general list is available in the Inside Trinity Purchasing site. Contact the Purchasing Office for detail information on Purchasing Coop Agreements. 

How do I sign up to the Trinity University Office Depot account?  

To register online with the TU Office Depot/OfficeMax account, contact our representative; Beth Stephenson, 210-912-8701 or Email:  Beth.Stephenson [at] The Purchasing Office Staff can also assist. Purchasing [at] If your card number or expiration date changes, please contact the Purchasing Office to update your default payment information.

Do we get special pricing from Consolidated Office Supply, Office Max, etc.?  

Office Depot (OD) is the preferred vendor and is under the Texas Cooperative Purchasing Network (TCPN). This contract pricing is negotiated state wide for higher education agencies. It is very likely that other vendors are also on some type of purchasing cooperative and offer discount pricing. If purchasing from other vendors, request for purchasing cooperative pricing. Trinity University participates and has contract agreements with various purchasing coops, including; U.S. Communities, E&I Purchasing, BuyBoard & TXSmart Buy. Vendors will be familiar with these contracts if they are participating in the coop contracts.

What if my purchase includes a contract agreement?

All contract agreements must be reviewed and approved by the Trinity University Risk Management Office and or the Vice President for Finance and Administration. The requesting department must consider that it typically takes two weeks for this review and approval process to be completed. Reference Risk Management procedures.

Which delivery address should I use?

Orders placed directly with the vendor by phone or in person must include complete shipping instructions. For detail information reference the document, Placing Orders with Merchants. The vendor must cite the requestor’s name on all invoices, packing slips and correspondence pertaining to the order. Request that the merchandise be shipped to: Trinity University/Central Receiving, Attention person’s name or building & room number, 607 Kings Court, San Antonio, TX 78212. The TU requisition must be processed as soon as possible. Request an estimated time of arrival from the vendor and inform Central Receiving. Forward all order confirmations to Central Receiving, preferably via email: Centrec [at]

What is the Trinity University billing address?

1 Trinity Place, Trinity University, San Antonio, TX 78212

When do I request vendor installations and delivery instead of shipping directly to Central Receiving?

It is recommended that furniture, appliances or equipment requiring assembly include delivery and installation on the vendor’s quotes. This will assure that the vendors maintain all liability and product warranty. The vendor should be provided the following: Trinity Campus Map, point of contact, building, room number and a phone number. Large project installations should be coordinated with the Purchasing Office. 

What should I know about purchasing new furniture? 

The TU Furniture Buying Guidelines are listed in the Purchasing Office, Inside Trinity. The attachment will include various Trinity University furniture purchases, manufacturer’s links and local dealers and sales representative contacts. For further assistance contact the Purchasing Office, Purchasing [at]

Does Trinity University have furniture standards? 

Yes.  Furniture standards have been established in most buildings as they have been renovated or new construction. The TU Furniture Standards worksheet is a list of some furniture standards.  The Purchasing Office maintains additional furniture lists.  

What if I have a trade-in or exchanging existing equipment with my new purchase?

Trade-in or exchange of university property must be approved by the appropriate Vice President prior to making the commitment. 

  • The trade-in or exchange must be noted on the requisition and must include a full description, the University asset number and the value received from the vendor. 
  • Trade-in of equipment purchased with federal funds requires approval from the funding agency.  Contact the Trinity University Grants Accountant in the Business Office for disposal authorization.

How do I obtain competitive quotes or vendor information not listed in the Furniture Guidelines?

Contact Purchasing at Purchasing [at] or Cindy Lara, EXT 8290.

Does the university have any discount programs or Purchasing Coop agreements?

The university has negotiated discount programs with FedEx and Office Depot. Continued work with other vendors is in progress. A list of Purchasing Cooperatives is also available for purchasing supplies and equipment. A purchasing cooperative is a cooperative agreement among a third party, non-profit organization that will negotiate best pricing contracts for government or higher education agencies for the purpose of maximizing purchasing power and reducing overall costs. 

How to obtain a tax-exempt certificate?

Tax Exempt forms can be found in T-Mail, Google, Drive, search FSC Forms.

Section 2: Convenience Copy and Other Services FAQ

Who do I contact concerning copy machine replacement, supplies & service calls?

Grace Martinez (EXT 8228) oversees the convenience copier operation.

When will my copier be replaced?

Department copiers are replaced every 8 years. If you have a need for a color copier, send your request in advance. We recommend that any or all desktop copiers be sent to surplus property, in order to maximize your savings by discontinuing the purchase of ink cartridges. For a status update on your copier’s replacement date contact Purchasing [at]

What is my department’s cost for a new copier?

The new copier purchases are funded by the Convenience Copier budget in the Purchasing Office. The department is charged back on a monthly basis for each copy made. Copiers are networked and monthly readings are tracked electronically.

How do I request service for our department copier?

For copier service requests, please email, Purchasing [at] or call x8226 and we will call Knight Office to service your copier. Please include department & location of copier with the specific problem.

What are the typical copy machine problems we can expect?

Paper Jams, can be caused by too much moisture in the copy paper, if paper is not properly stored. Keep paper in the original box in a closed cabinet until you need to use it.

Sky Shots are poor quality copies caused by placing the originals on the glass and not closing the copy machine lid. It will not allow the copier to monitor how much toner is need to copy the original and result in a thick layer of black toner on the paper. This will also consume toner cartridges much faster and wasteful.

If black lines are printing on copies when using the auto feed, raise the cover and clean the left partition glass and the rollers that are on the lid itself. If lines still appear after you have cleaned glass, then please call for service. Copier Helpful Hints. 

What is the cost per copy and what else is covered in this cost?

Departments are charged back at a rate of .04 per copy (black ink) and .25 per copy for color. The charge back amount includes; copies produced, service calls, consumable supplies such as; copy paper, toner cartridges & staples. Most copiers are networked to include additional capabilities; printer, fax and scan. Departments are eligible for color copiers when replacement is due color copiers are more feasible than desktop or laser color printers. 

How do I request the copy machine consumable supplies at zero cost?

Copier supplies, including; copy paper, toner and staples are available through School Dude, If for some reason you cannot locate what you are looking for, please call or email Centrec [at] 

What budget account number should I use for copy machine consumable supplies from SchoolDude?

Use budget account number; 11-1500018-54100-xx  (xx is your copier #, included in Helpful Tips document). These inventory supplies are not billed to the department.  Each department is charged back at month end per copies made which covers all consumable and maintenance costs. All copy machine consumable supplies from Central Receiving are listed in the Central Receiving School Dude Inventory. 

What if I need paper supplies for all other department needs such as; office - desk top or laser printers, from SchoolDude or any other vendor?

For any and all other copy paper supplies, use your department budget code when ordering from SchoolDude.  Reference

Why was my department charged for copy paper at the end of the fiscal year?

At the end of each fiscal year, an analysis of the paper used on all department copiers is generated and evaluated. The purpose is to compare the paper supply furnished against the number of copies made. This will ensure the copy paper included in the departments copy charge back is being used for its intended purpose. The differences could mean the department is stock inventorying paper or possibly not being used for its intended purpose. Copy paper overage more than one case of copy paper, 5,000 sheets in paper usage for copiers will be charged back to the department at the warehouse cost of copy paper.

How can I request training for our department copy machine?

If you would like to schedule a training session for your copy machine users, please call or email Grace at x8228 or Purchasing [at]  

What if I get sales calls for copy toner specials?

Toner Pirates are scam artists who call businesses and trick them into buying toner supplies for your copier. PLEASE DO NOT GIVE OUT ANY INFORMATION ON COPIER – we do not pay for toner, it’s under our maintenance contract with Knight Office. Or just transfer the call to Purchasing @ x8228.

Where are the vending machines locations?

A list of the vending locations throughout campus can be found here.

How do I request service for vending equipment; Soft drink machines, snack or laundry?

(Other service calls include: Vending machines – Coca Cola, Canteen Snack Vending, CoinMach laundry machines.) Call EXT 5400, email or text the problem to Purchasing [at], include the machine ID, location and the specific problem.

Vending machine malfunctioned and I lost money. How do I get a refund?

Call the Purchasing Office, EXT 8226 or email, Purchasing [at] for lost funds on any of the machines. Identify the machine number and location and how much was lost. If cash was lost, Purchasing will refund the lost cash. If TigerBucks were lost, contact TigerCard Office, TCRD [at] for a credit refund. The TigerCard Office will require this form be completed.

How do I request service for our department typewriter? 

The Purchasing Office handles typewriter maintenance. For service call EXT 5400. Departments should contact the Purchasing Office when purchasing new typewriters and request to be included in the university maintenance agreement. The current cost is $42 per year and will be charged back to your department. For further information, contact the Purchasing Office at Purchasing [at]

How do I process an Employee Moving Allowance?

To process an approved moving allowance for reimbursement, complete a TU Requisition, attach all original receipts and forward to the FSC Office. Label, “Faculty Move”.  For further reference see Moving Policies & Procedures 

How do I request Surplus Property?

Surplus Property is stored in Prassel 010; which includes various types of Trinity University property that is transferred to surplus from other departments. The types of equipment maintained for re-use will include; desks, chairs, file cabinets, etc. Call the Purchasing Office at in advance to request surplus item inventory and schedule an appointment to see availability. Anyone in the Purchasing Office can assist with your surplus equipment requests.

A 006 form is required.

Surplus Sales or online bidding is occasionally available and will be posted on Tigertalk and through Inside Trinity Purchasing Office. For further details, see University Surplus Policy (Attach Link)

Section 3. Federally Funded Purchasing FAQ

Where can I find the policy and guidelines for purchasing equipment and supplies using federal funding?

A detailed FAQ can be found here. We recommend this document be read and reviewed carefully for a complete understanding of the Federal Award requirements.