Section 7: Cooperative Purchases

A. Statutory Authority for Cooperative Purchases

Several laws allow local governments to purchase goods and services using contracts competed previously by the state or other governments. They include:

Texas Building and Procurement Commission Rule Transfer Through the enactment of House Bill 3560, 80th Legislature, 2007, certain procurement duties and powers of the Texas Building and Procurement Commission are transferred to the Comptroller of Public Accounts. http://www.window.state.tx.us/


B. State of Texas Cooperative Programs

There are many programs that are enabled by the statutes. This section of the Manual describes the programs and provides basic procedures for using these methods of procurement. In all of these programs, the Purchasing Agent is authorized to act for Bexar County at the direction of Commissioners Court in all matters relating to the purchasing program, including the purchase of goods and services from the vendor under any contract. Bexar County is responsible for making payments directly to the vendor.


1. Texas Multiple Award Schedules (TXMAS)

The contracts listed under TXMAS have been competed at the federal level and are available from agencies such as the General Services Administration. A list of contracts may be viewed at: http://www.window.state.tx.us/procurement/prog/txmas
This type of procurement is processed as an “open market” requisition using the procedures described in Sections IV (A) and (C) of this Manual. The major difference is that the requisition information (item description, vendor name/number, price, unit of measure, etc.) will reflect TXMAS contract information.


2. State of Texas Department of Information Recourses (DIR) and Go DIRect Program

Local governments can purchase goods and services that have been competitively bid by the State through DIR and through its vendors. The Go DIRect Program is managed by DIR and allows entities to purchase computer-related equipment from the DIR-contracted vendors. A listing of available products and services is located at: http://www.dir.state.tx.us/store/index.htm
This type of procurement is processed as an “open market” requisition using the procedures described in Sections IV (C) of this Manual. The major difference is that the requisition information (item description, vendor name/number, price, unit of measure, etc.) will reflect either DIR or DIRect information.


C. Cooperative Purchasing (Interlocal Agreements)

Bexar County currently has interlocal agreements with Tarrant County and the Houston-Galveston Area Council of Governments (H-GAC).
This type of procurement is processed as an “open market” requisition using the procedures described in Sections IV (A) and (C) of this Manual. When the Purchasing Department receives the requisition, it will evaluate whether or not it can be cooperatively purchased from these entities and will enter specific contract information into the requisition before generating a purchase order.


D. Other Cooperatives

The Bexar County Purchasing Department will evaluate other cooperatives for price competitiveness and feasibility. When cooperatives are identified, the Purchasing Department will distribute procedures pertaining to these cooperatives to user departments to assist in their planning and identification of requirements.