Washington State University
BUSINESS POLICIES AND PROCEDURES MANUAL
Sponsored Programs Services
Acquiring Equipment Under Federal Agreements
WSU personnel are responsible for obtaining equipment in accordance
with applicable University, state, and federal regulations. (SAAM 30.10,
OMB Circular A-110)
Before obtaining an equipment item for use on a sponsored project,
departmental personnel are responsible for assuring that the transaction
is appropriate. The following criteria are to be evaluated:
- Prepurchase screening requirements.
- Prior approval requirements.
- Where the title will vest.
Check the award document for clauses relating to the purchase
of equipment and the acquisition of government-furnished property. If the
award document is not available, contact Sponsored Program Services.
A subcontract may include a line item budget which includes
equipment. In addition, the federal agency or the University may provide
government-furnished property directly to the subcontractor.
Property Control System
Unless exempted by special terms and conditions of the subcontract
and/or agency regulations, the subcontractor is required to have:
- A federally-approved system of property control, or
- A system that meets the criteria required by federal regulations for
government-furnished property and/or purchased equipment.
The subcontract may include federal flow-down provisions, special
terms and conditions, and/or an assurance clause stating that the subcontractor
has a system of property control that meets the preceding criteria for equipment
and/or government-furnished property. A subcontractor may be required to
provide the University with a copy of the subcontractor's federally-approved
property control system or business policies and procedures.
If the federal agreement does not specifically mention equipment,
apply OMB Circular A-21 regulations
regarding equipment allowability. In general, A-21 states:
EQUIPMENT SCREENING BY WSU
- General purpose equipment items, (e.g., office equipment, motor vehicles,
etc.) are usually not allowable as a direct charge unless approved in advance
by the sponsoring agency.
- Special purpose equipment items (i.e., equipment used only for research,
medical, scientific or other technical activities) are allowable with prior
approval from the sponsor. (Itemization on an approved proposal budget may
constitute prior approval in many cases. See Prior Approval below.)
- Expenditures for capital improvements are usually unallowable unless
approved in advance by the sponsoring agency.
WSU units are to screen existing equipment inventories to avoid
purchasing unnecessary or duplicative items.
Screening is recommended at two points in a project's history:
- Before a proposal is submitted to a federal agency for approval.
- Before a piece of equipment is purchased with federal funds. See 70.10
for general requisition procedures.
Principal investigators are to share special purpose equipment
Cost More Than $5000
If the equipment item costs more than $5000 the equipment coordinator
screens the departmental equipment inventory for like or substantially similar
equipment. If another suitable item is not available in the department,
enter the following statement in the item description of the Departmental
Cost More Than $10,000
NO SUITABLE ITEM AVAILABLE IN THE DEPARTMENT.
The University maintains an online inventory listing available to departments.
If the equipment item costs more than $10,000 send the requisition
to Property Inventory where all University property is screened for like
or substantially similar items.
If appropriate equipment does not exist or is not available for use, the
University's Property Administrator attaches a certification to the requisition
and forwards the purchase documentation to Purchasing.
If appropriate equipment exists and is available for use, the University's
Property Administrator returns the requisition to the originating department
requesting that the department either:
- Negotiate a shared-use agreement with the unit that owns a similar
equipment item, or
- Provide a written justification from the department chair detailing
why similar equipment items are not appropriate. The department attaches
the justification to the requisition and sends the purchase documentation
If the equipment item has been itemized in the approved proposal
budget, additional agency approval is generally not required. However, certain
agencies require additional approval by the agency coordinating officer.
Direct questions to Sponsored Programs Services.
Industrial Plant Equipment (IPE)
Complete and route a Sponsored Project Activity Request if the equipment
item is not itemized in the original approved budget and additional approval
and/or rebudgeting is required. See 40.23.
Industrial plant equipment purchased on Department of Defense
contracts must have prepurchase approval of the Defense Supply Center, Richmond
(DSCR). (48 CFR 245)
Industrial Plant Equipment (IPE) is plant equipment with an
acquisition cost of $15,000 or more used for the purpose of: cutting, abrading,
grinding, shaping, forming, joining, testing, measuring, heating, treating,
or otherwise altering the physical, electrical or chemical properties of
materials, components or end items entailed in manufacturing, maintenance,
supply, processing, assembly or research and development operations. IPE
is in federal stock group 34. (48 CFR 245.301)
To request DSCR screening for IPE, the principal investigator
submits DoD Industrial Plant Equipment Requisition (DoD Form 1419) to the
Defense Supply Center Richmond, ATTN: JH, 8000 Jefferson Davis Highway,
Richmond, VA 23297-5100. Obtain DoD Form 1419 from Sponsored Programs
Automatic Data Processing Equipment (ADPE)
Submit requests to acquire Automatic Data Processing Equipment
(ADPE) to the Administrative Contracting Officer (ACO) Office of Naval Research
- Seattle. The ACO submits contractor requests to the Defense Information
Systems Agency in accordance with the Defense Automation Resources Management
Manual. (48 CFR 245.302-1)
ONR Submittal Instructions
Before completing the requisition DoD Form 1419 for IPE, or
submitting a request to purchase ADPE equipment, the principal investigator
may wish to informally discuss the proposed acquisition with the Office
of Naval Research (ONR) Administrative Contract Officer, Seattle; telephone
(206) 526-3168. ONR may have additional or alternate instructions for submittal
of a requisition for IPE or a purchase request for ADPE.
The DSCR screens each IPE request to determine whether the item
is available. If the item(s) is not available, the DSCR issues a Certificate
Acquiring Special Test Equipment
Attach a copy of the Certificate of Nonavailability to the Department Requisition
when purchasing the item through WSU Purchasing.
When special test equipment or components are known, the solicitation
(and the contract) are to separately identify each item to be furnished
by the federal government or acquired or fabricated by the contractor for
the federal government. Individual items of less than $5,000 may be grouped
by category. (48 CFR 245.307-2)
Notice and Approval
Under negotiated contracts containing the clause regarding Special
Test Equipment at 48 CFR 52.245-18, WSU must notify the contracting officer
if it intends to acquire or fabricate special test equipment.
Within 30 days of receipt of the notice from WSU, the contracting officer:
- Reviews the proposed items for necessity and proper classification
as "special" test equipment;
- Screens the availability of existing federally-owned test equipment
in accordance with agency procedures; and
- Notifies WSU, approving or disapproving the acquisition or fabrication
and, if it is disapproved, states whether the equipment will be furnished
by the federal government.
Either the award document or the approval letter for equipment
purchase includes title-vesting information.
Equipment may be purchased, transferred from another federal
project, acquired from federal agencies, or fabricated.
Complete a Departmental Requisition according to procedures
Equipment must be used on the original project for as long as
needed. When no longer needed for the original purpose, equipment may be
used for other projects currently or previously sponsored by the federal
government. (Projects of the original agency are to be given first priority
if there is a choice.)
After verifying the allowability of the transfer with Sponsored Program
Services, the unit's equipment coordinator initiates an Inventory
Control Report (WSU 1033).
The terms and conditions of a federal agreement usually specify
equipment items to be furnished to WSU. The principal investigator usually
initiates acquisition of government-furnished property.
Federal Excess Property
Federal excess property is available for use on federal cost-reimbursement
contracts and federal grants. See 20.78.
The principal investigator (or equipment coordinator) maintains
a separate file for each fabricated equipment item. All expenditure documents
(IRIs, Departmental Requisitions, Receiving Reports, etc.) related to fabrication
are retained in the file. When the item is completed, the responsible individual
uses the assembled documents to calculate acquisition cost of the item.
The acquisition cost is multiplied by the current Facilities and Administrative
(F&A) cost rate to obtain the F&A cost of acquiring the item. (See
40.25 for the current F&A cost
rate.) This F&A cost is added to the acquisition cost to obtain the
value of the equipment item. This figure is used for inventory management
and disposal purposes.
for receiving procedures.
WSU becomes responsible for the equipment upon delivery.
Acknowledgment of Receipt
The departmental equipment coordinator (or principal investigator)
signs and dates the government shipping document accompanying the item.
Copies of the form are distributed to the following offices:
- Sponsored Program Services
- Cognizant agency contract administrator
- Originator of the shipment
- Property Inventory