Food Authority (SFA) /Local Education Agency (LEA) operating Child Nutrition
Programs that receive Federal funding are required to develop and implement
procurement procedures, consistent with Federal, State and Local regulations.
The procurement plan and procedures will be used for the acquisition of
property or services required under a Federal award or subaward. These
acquisitions include the purchase of food, equipment, supplies and services
using the nonprofit school foodservice account. All procurements must follow
the regulatory language cited in:
- 2 CFR 200 Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards.
- 7 CFR 210 National School Lunch Program
- 7 CFR 220 School Breakfast Program
- Arkansas Procurement Laws and Rules
The SFA/LEA must have a Child Nutrition
Procurement Plan on file, which will be made available for monitoring reviews
and legislative or private audits.
SFA/ LEAs must have written
procedures for procurement transactions that incorporate:
- Clear and accurate description of the technical requirements for the material, product, or service to be procured.
- Such description must not, in competitive procurements, contain features which unduly restrict competition.
- The description may include a statement of the qualitative nature of the material, product or service to be procured and, when necessary, must set forth those minimum essential characteristics and standards to which it must conform if it is to satisfy its intended use.
- Brand names should avoided if at all possible. When it is impractical or uneconomical to make a clear and accurate description of the technical requirements, a “brand name or equivalent” description may be used as a means to define the performance or other salient requirements of procurement.
SFA/LEAs must be responsible, in
accordance with good administrative practice and sound business judgment,
SFAs/LEAs must be responsible for the settlement of all
contractual and administrative issues arising out of procurements. These issues
include, but are not limited to, source evaluation, protests, disputes, and
claims. The procurement standards do not relieve program operators of any
contractual responsibilities under its contracts. The Federal awarding agency
will not substitute its judgment for that of the Program operator unless the
matter is primarily a Federal concern. Violations of law will be referred to
the local, state, or Federal authority having proper jurisdiction.
SFA/LEAs must award contracts only
to responsible contractors possessing the ability to perform successfully under
the terms and conditions of a proposed procurement. Consideration will be given
to such matters as contractor integrity, compliance with public policy, record
of past performance, and financial and technical resources. As referenced, 2
CFR Part 200.213 goes on to “restrict awards, subawards, and contracts with
certain parties that are debarred, suspended, or otherwise excluded from or
ineligible for participation in Federal assistance programs or activities.” A
resource to search debarment and suspension records may be found here: www.sam.gov.
SFA/LEAs must maintain records
sufficient to detail the history of procurement for a minimum of five (5) years.
These records will include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following:
rationale for the method of procurement, selection of contract type, contractor
selection or rejection, and the basis for the contract price.
Code of Conduct
SFA’s/LEA’s must have an approved
written code of conduct for employees involved in procurement in Child
Nutrition Programs. This written code of conduct is mandated by federal
regulations 2 CFR 200.318(c)(1) and must:
- Prohibit employees from soliciting gifts
- Prohibit employees from travel packages
- Prohibit employees from other incentives from prospective contractors.
- Prohibit an employee from participating in the selection, award and administration of any contract to which an entity or certain persons connected to them, have financial interest.
- Provide for Child Nutrition Program (CNP) operators to set standards when financial interest is not substantial or the gift is an unsolicited item of nominal value and may be acceptable (for example: coffee mug or calendar).
- Must provide for disciplinary actions to be applied in the event the standards are violated.
Child Nutrition Program Code of Conduct should be reviewed and signed each year
by all Child Nutrition employees and other staff members involved in Child
Additional information and resources
can be found on the Child Nutrition website under the procurement tab. https://dese.ade.arkansas.gov/Offices/child-nutrition-unit/procurement