Skip to main content

Purchasing Guidelines and Policies

Purchase Orders

  • Accurate, legible and complete descriptions are required. Unit of measure is important. If unsure on units, type “?” in unit field and press Enter to see available list of units.
  • More than one account number on a requisition can be used using the distribution screen.
  • Always add 8% tax to your orders.
  • If shipping cost is unknown, add 15% shipping charge to each item page.
  • If a purchase requisition is 15 line items or more, please enter your requisition as “Per attached list”. Please mail original copy to Purchasing, and send a copy via email in case original gets lost and to expedite PO process.
  • Please include as much information on your requisition as possible including name of sales rep, discounts and codes, special pricing, quote numbers or freight charges. If you have a formal quote please mail/email a copy to Purchasing.  (IE) If the item is a “kit”, you can describe what the kit includes.
  • Only Purchasing personnel are authorized to make any change to a purchase order. Please contact the purchasing department for requests.

Open Purchase Orders

  • Examples include:  JIT/printer cartridges/science/food.
  • Authorized signatures and effective dates are required.
  • A complete description is important. If a teacher only has an exact amount to spend then type in description area “Not to Exceed P.O. (or dollar) amount.”

Object Codes

  • Please use the Chart of Accounts. It can be found on the budget website.
  • Listed below are some frequently used object codes:

4406 - Computers/Laptops (includes software, monitor or any other internal type items if purchased at the same time.

4350 - Laptop case

4309 - Computer supplies (any item under $460.00 plus tax) 4301 - Instructional (ask yourself, does the item instruct?)

5810 - Consultant (Someone who is coming onto District property) 5822 - Field trips

5866 - License Fees – Software license, online subscription

4300 – Materials and supplies is any one item under $460.00 plus tax 4400 – Non-capitalized equipment is any one item over $460.00 plus tax

Account Distribution Screen
(Split Screen)

  • This function cannot be used with Change Orders if the Account Distribution screen does not already exist. If you have several account numbers to be used for a Change Order, a separate item screen must be entered for each account number.


  • Office supplies only. No one item over $150.00 should ordered on your open PO.
  • Separate purchase requisitions should be entered for instructional items (01/4301 object code) and Administrative (09/4350 object code).
  • If you are using restricted funds, a separate purchase requisition must be entered itemizing the products you want to purchase.
  • Order minimum is $50.00.
  • Email Kathy Miller at for log in and password set-up.
  • Current JIT catalog can be found on the purchasing website, along with a direct link to the Office Depot ordering site.


  • Definition of Use Tax – Taxes paid to the State of California for any purchase not taxed.
  • We always pay our County tax unless item is picked up outside Orange County.
  • Taxable items-
    • Software – “Off the shelf” is taxable.
    • Renewal of software license for “off the shelf” is taxable.
    • Invoice showing shipping and handling even if common carrier is taxable.
    • All out of state products are taxable paid to the State of California.
    • Computers – software that comes with computer is taxable.
    • Handling Fee
  • Non-Taxable items-
    • Electronic downloads without media (CD or disk)
    • New and renewable on-line subscriptions
    • Labor
    • Consultant Services
    • Field trips
    • Memberships
    • Freight – common carrier, U.S. Mail, or independent contractor
    • Handling is taxable. If delivery charges are not stated separately on an
  • Magazine subscriptions: some are, some are not. If in doubt always add tax.

Purchase Order Tracking/ Expediting 

  • All order expediting is handled by Purchasing. Please do not call the Warehouse or the vendor directly. See Purchasing Handbook for more details.

Packing Slips

  • Please send original vendor packing slips/delivery receipts to A/P directly.
  • Do not send purchase order copies provided by the Warehouse. These should be kept by you for your records. If you receive a wrong item, damaged product, shortage, overage or any other discrepancy against your order please contact the appropriate buyer.


  • Go to the Finders website for commodities and request for a quote, or email Purchasing to get a quote on the product you require. If you are using Finders to request a quote you will need to click on Commodities, click on a commodity, and then click on “Request a Quote”.
  • By requesting a quote you will facilitate Purchasing in finding the best source for the product or service you are interested in.
  • Independent Contractor Master Agreements are on the Purchasing website.

Confirming Orders

  • Per the California Education Code 42632, only those authorized by our Board can financially obligate the District. Confirming orders are against District policy and strongly discouraged.
  • If you have a Rush order, call Purchasing. We can expedite your order as needed.
  • Unauthorized purchases may result in the individual having to donate the item/service purchased with no reimbursement.


  • All vendors/salespeople are to come to the Purchasing Department. They must have permission from Purchasing to go to any other District site.
  • The Purchasing Department is responsible for quoting, placing orders, expediting/follow-ups, returns, discrepancies, price increase approval, freight charge approval, and any changes to a purchase order.

Internet Purchasing

  • This is not authorized by the District.
  • Many internet vendors do not comply with various sales tax regulations and Federal Import Laws, nor do they accept purchase orders and Net 30 Day terms.
  • Exceptions are only approved by Purchasing.

Bill To - Ship To

  • Always bill to “NMUSD ATTN: Accounts Payable”.
  • Most shipments must deliver to the Warehouse.
  • No other department or school is responsible for paying invoices. If a vendor calls for payment status refer call to A/P.
  • All original invoices must go to A/P directly. Please scan a copy to Purchasing Department in case original gets lost and to expedite PO process.

Field Trips

  • The description must indicate grade level, number of students and date of trip, program name, and cost per student.
  • The Object  Code for field trips is 5822 – Admission Fees.

Payment Terms

  • The District payment terms are Net 30 Days.
  • Accounts Payable will take discounts when offered.
  • Credit card purchases are not authorized.

Site Modification Request Form

  • When in doubt ask yourself, does it touch the building or the grounds? If yes, you can find the District Site Modification Request Form on the facilities website, and click on Facilities Development.
  • An original form is required by M&O. Please note vendors must have Liability Insurance and be a licensed and qualified professional. The Site Modification Request must be approved by M&O before work can begin.

Returns and Discrepancies

  • Please email the appropriate buyer to arrange your return. All returns and discrepancies are handled by the Purchasing Department. Returns have a $25.00 limit.
  • Once we have permission from the vendor to make a return we will instruct the Warehouse to pick up the items.
  • All returns are to be sent from the original receiving location. Teachers are not authorized to arrange a return if a P.O. has been issued.

Emergency Rush Orders

  • Please call appropriate Buyer for Rush orders. We will be happy to accommodate this request. Just a reminder that most requisitions require several levels of approval.
  • Fax originals to Pam Saunders in Accounts Payable at (714)424-5015.
  • If this is a Rush please call Kathy Miller directly at 714/424-7583 or email

Stores Orders

  • We do not backorder any items in Stores. When entering a Stores order and an item shows insufficient stock, then zero (0) that item out.
  • If you require delivery information about your order please contact the District Warehouse at 714/424- 5075. Please “print” your order only once. This will eliminate duplicate orders.
  • Stores catalog can be found on the Purchasing website.


  • Consultants must always have a signed contract and be Board approved. No exceptions.
  • Independent Contractor Master Agreements for various services offered District-wide are listed on our Purchasing page on the District website.
  • If a site uses the services of one of the listed master consultants, the provider will give the site a proposal for a particular service. Then the site will create a requisition in Bi-Tech, which precludes the initiation of a new contract.

Requisition Approvals

  • Each purchase requisition can have up to 6 levels of approval. Purchasing notifies each approver on a daily basis that a req. is awaiting their approval.

Product Standardization 

  • The District maintains a list of standard equipment. The reason for this is lower repair costs, training, quality of product, contracts, and large quantity price negotiations.
  • All computers must be our District standard which is Hewlett-Packard (most schools and all Administration) or Apple (some elementary schools).
  • All new software must be approved by Information Technology and Education Technology. Please go to the software website to begin the approval process.
  • See Hardware, Software, and Grant Approvals.

ASB/ PTA/ Boosters/ Parent Groups

  • These groups are NOT authorized to transact directly with District vendors on behalf of the District or any school.
  • They cannot obligate the District to pay for their purchases. The money must be deposited in the appropriate school account prior to a purchase being made or they must “donate” their purchase to the District.
  • No outside group may hire contractors to conduct construction work of any kind on any District property.

Year End Memos/Calendar

  • Year-end deadlines are published in early April on the Purchasing Web page. Please review immediately for dates that affect your school/office site.

Warranty/ Non-Warranty Repairs for Computers, Printers, AV Equipment

  • For computers, monitors, projectors, and printers:
    • Customer should contact I.T. to evaluate the problem and determine warranty status. If equipment is under warranty, I.T. will contact the appropriate vendor and arrange repair or replacement depending on warranty terms. If equipment is not under warranty, I.T. will evaluate how cost effective required repairs will be and contact the customer with options.
    • I.T. has a limited number of computers that are available as limited term loaners while repairs are being performed. Please discuss the loaner options with the I.T. technician handling your work order or call the I.T. Department at x7510.
  • For all other inquiries, customer should contact I.T. to determine the best course of action.

Hardware, Software, and Grant Approvals 

  • All District personnel are asked to adhere to the hardware and software approval procedures. The purpose of these procedures is to ensure that all District hardware and software acquisitions (whether by purchase order, grant, or donation) is compatible with District technology.
  • All computers, printers, and software are to be approved by I.T. prior to purchase. Hardware or software purchased without this approval will not be installed or supported by Technology Services.
  • The E.T. and I.T. Department Approval Committee will assess the software to determine if our workstations, desktop and laptop computers, meet the vendor’s recommended operating system and hardware requirements.
  • The Committee will also determine:
  1. If the Site’s or department’s server is capable of running the application.
  2. If the network infrastructure is capable of supporting the application.
  3. If the software functions as intended.
  4. If similar software is already in use in the District.

The appropriate department(s) may also be asked to provide input in this process. For more information or to access the forms go to the software website.