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Special Procurement

What is a Special Procurement?

A Special Procurement is an informal or formal procedure defined and followed by an agency to conduct a procurement of products or services in a manner that affords more flexibility than standard procurement procedures. There are two types of Special procurements:
  • Class Special Procurement – used when entering into a series of contracts over time or for multiple projects.
  • Contract-Specific Special Procurement – used when entering into a single contract or a number of related contracts on a one-time basis or for a single project.
These types apply to new or amended procurements and the term Special Procurement is used for each, unless otherwise noted.

The use of a Special Procurement sourcing method, for specified types of procurements, is also provided for, but is not required, by administrative rule. This provision applies to the following procurement types that do not require pre-approval if used:
  1. Client Placement and Client Health Care Services.
  2. Client Services Source Selection.
  3. Renegotiations of Existing Contracts with Incumbent Contractors.
  4. Advertising Contracts.
  5. Equipment Repair and Overhaul.
  6. Contracts for Price Regulated Items.
  7. Investment Contracts.
  8. Food Contracts.
  9. Purchase of Used Personal Property.
  10. Reverse Auctions.
For more information on each of these Special Procurements, refer to OAR 125-247-0288.

When to Use Special Procurements

Special Procurements are allowable by statute in circumstances where standard procurement methods are not appropriate. An agency must have delegated authority and must evaluate all other methods of procurement prior to conducting a Special Procurement.

Prior to conducting the procurement, an agency must request and receive approval from the State Chief Procurement Officer (State CPO) to implement a Special Procurement according to the methods approved for that procurement. The State CPO will make a determination based on factors of competition and benefit, specifically that competition will not be harmed and that the state will realize substantial savings.

Note: Special Procurements authorized under OAR 125-247-0288 require approval of the agency Designated Procurement Officer (DPO) only.

How to Process Special Procurements

Resource: Use the DAS Procurement Services Special Procurement Request form and the Special Procurement Amendment Request form to document findings that support the procurement type and the process the agency will use to conduct the procurement.

Elements of Special Procurement Request

Request for Special Procurement must describe:
  1. Reason(s) why the agency has elected to use a Special Procurement and how it will benefit the agency or the public.
  2. Findings, market research, or other documentation that the Special Procurement:
    1. Is unlikely to encourage favoritism or substantially diminish competition, AND
    2. Is reasonably expected to realize substantial savings to the agency or the public, OR
    3. Is expected to substantially promote the public interest in a manner that could not practicably be realized by other procurement methods.
  3. Alternative procurement process designed by the agency.
  4. Products or services in scope of the Special Procurement.
  5. Methods for advertisement of the procurement, if necessary.
  6. Methods for amending the solicitation, if necessary.
  7. Evaluation process and criteria for selection, if necessary.
  8. Proposed contract type and associated terms and conditions.
  9. Other information that may be required by the State CPO.

Special Procurement Request Process

Special Procurement is an alternate procurement method. Justification for the use of this method must be defensible and based on findings of market research and analysis. If the proposed method is not approved by the State CPO, the agency must identify a different procurement method.

Special Procurement processes vary based on the contract value and an agency’s delegated authority. Each of these processes requires consideration for conducting the solicitation, for posting the public notice of approval, and for agency reporting requirements, described below.

Posting Notice of Approval

Special Procurement requires the following considerations for posting the public notice of approval.
  • The agency must submit a completed Request for Special Procurement Form to the appropriate individuals for review based on the chart above.
    • If the request is not approved, the agency must identify an appropriate alternative procurement method.
    • If the request is approved, the agency or DAS/PS must post a public notice on the OregonBuys system and include the approved Request for Special Procurement as support for the notice.
  • The public posting must remain on the OregonBuys website for a minimum of seven days before starting the Special Procurement to allow vendors the opportunity to review and submit protest.
  • Protests must be submitted within the seven-day posting period.
  • If within the seven-day posting period no protest is received, the agency can implement the Special Procurement.
    • The agency is required to perform the procurement as described in the Special Procurement Request Form. Any deviation from this process requires the agency to submit a new form requesting an amendment to the process, including all posting requirements.
    • Any deviation from the processes, restrictions, timelines, dollar thresholds, etc., may result in withdrawal of State CPO approval of the request at any time.
  • If in that time a protest is received, the State CPO will place the request on hold, review the protest, and provide a written determination of the protest.
    • If the protest is upheld, the agency will be required to identify an appropriate alternative procurement method.
    • If the protest is denied, the agency can implement the Special Procurement.


Prior to each legislative session in odd-numbered years, DAS prepares a report on agencies’ use of Special Procurement. Agencies must maintain and report the following information in response to DAS’ request for Special Procurement use.
  1. The number of Special Procurements the agency conducted.
  2. The number of contracts awarded through each Special Procurement.
  3. A summary of the reasons that the agency decided to conduct each Special Procurement.
  4. A descriptive summary of the procurement procedure used to conduct the Special Procurement, noting whether the procedure was competitive or not.
  5. A listing of the number of soliciation responses the agency received if the Special Procurement procedure was competitive.
  6. The contract price or estimated contract price for each contract awarded through a Special Procurement.
  7. A summary of the protests or other responses to the approval of each Special Procurement that the agency received.
  8. A summary of the disposition of the protests or other responses received.