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  • Rocky Mountain Epurchasing
  • Finance Contacts
  • Budget Division
  • Purchasing Division
  • Tax and Licensing Division

Vendor's Guide

Purchasing Organization

Each department in the City has unique needs, and are therefore responsible for their purchasing decisions. We don't have a formal list of vendors that restrict departments in this area. Instead, each department should make their purchasing choices based on price, availability, quality and a variety of other factors. We're also here, as a division of the Finance Department, to assist any department in their purchasing needs, as well as coordinate all formal bids over $50,000.

City Pre-Purchase Requirements

Purchasing procedures are governed by Municipal Code (Purchasing Ordinance). In general, the following pre-purchase requirements apply to City purchases

Up to $10,000 Comparison shopping
$10,000 - $50,000 Minimum of 3 informal bids or quotes required
Over $50,000 Formal bidding required


The names of all formal bids will be published in the Daily Camera newspaper. For those vendors who do not have access to the Internet, paper copies of bid documents are available through the Purchasing Office.

Use of Purchasing Cards

Departments are encouraged to use purchasing cards when buying lower value goods. The cards are generally better because they:

  • make it easier for the City to process purchases
  • make it easier for vendors to process their accounts 

We want employees to only use the purchase card for some vendors, which we've designated as "Purchase Only Vendors."  When a vendor is put on this list, they'll be notified by our office.

Bid Lists

By ordinance, the City is not required to maintain bid lists.  

Bid Plans and Specifications

Plans and specifications for capital improvement projects are sent to several "plan rooms" in the Denver metro area. These are for viewing only and, unless otherwise noted, the bid packages must be picked up at the City Purchasing Office. A 5 percent bid security (bid bond) is required with capital project bids.


Vendors should submit invoices directly to the receiving department. Payments will not be made until the vendor has submitted a completed W-9 Form.

Invoices must:

  • include the vendor's IRS address for remitting
  • indicate the purchase order number,
  • indicate the designated department 
  • be only for goods delivered or services rendered
  • not be combined with two or more orders 

The City will pay on partial shipments if invoiced.

For information on payment of invoices, contact the Receiving Department. If problems cannot be resolved their, then contact the Finance Department.


All shipping costs are to be born by the vendor or prepaid and added to the invoice. If a purchase order initiated the shipment, shipping tickets should include the purchase order number.

Tax-Exempt Status

The City of Boulder is exempt from federal, state and local taxes. Pricing on bids should allow for this status unless stated otherwise. The primary exception to this standard is construction contracts where the contractor is considered to be the purchaser for tax purposes. Therefore, City taxes should be included in construction bids. The City's tax exempt numbers are as follows:

Taxing Agency Tax Exempt Numbers
Federal A-138553
State of Colorado 98-03489
City of Boulder 10868-6
Federal Employer Identification Number 84-6000566


Local and Minority Vendors

The City does not give special concessions to local and minority vendors on award of its contracts; however, in construction bids the City of Boulder encourages bidders to use subcontractors and suppliers located within its limits.

Recycled and Environmentally Preferred Products

The City of Boulder encourages departments to use recycled and environmentally preferable products whenever possible, and requires certain products be purchased in recycled form.