The primary goal of the Purchasing Department is to assure that the User Departments requirements are met in a cost effective and timely manner. To obtain quality materials and services while obtaining maximum competition whenever possible. The methods used to achieve this goal are in strict accordance with the City's purchasing policies and procedures.


The City views the relationships with its vendors, suppliers, and contractors as a business partnership where all parties are expected to coordinate and combine talents, ideas and actions in order to produce superior results for the citizens of the City of Lowell.


The Purchasing Department implements and administers the City's purchasing policies and practices, procuring all goods and services requested by City departments, the School department or any other agency operating through the City of Lowell.

Under the supervision of the Chief Procurement Officer, the City of Lowell's Purchasing Department

  • Coordinates the disposal of surplus property and supplies;
  • Ensures that all purchases are open, fair, competitive, obtained at the lowest possible cost and obtained in the best interest of the City;
  • Implements and administers the purchasing policies and practices of the City;
  • Maintains procurement records in accordance with M.G.L. c30B.
  • Provides procurement support to City departments, divisions, bureaus, and boards;
  • Verifies that purchases of goods and services are made in accordance with applicable Commonwealth law and City ordinances; and

Best Practices

We periodically issue guidelines with respect to best practices and local ordinances, and ensure that notices of procurement are listed on the City's website, and the state's website.

Open & Fair

The Purchasing Department strives for open and fair competition, while maintaining goodwill with all vendors interested in doing business with the City, and preserving the public trust. Depending on the amount and/or expected cost of items or services to be purchased, initial load the City may solicit quotes or go through a sealed bid/proposal process. All transactions must meet statutory requirements with regard for bidding, whether it is an informal quote, a written quote, a sealed bid, or a response to a request for proposal.

Authorized Purchases

Please be advised that the City of Lowell, in accordance with municipal finance law, will not support payment for goods or services rendered to the City of Lowell if they are not supported, prior to receiving said goods or services, by a Purchase Order (PO) or Contract.

Finance Law

Municipal finance law requires that a city must have a prior appropriation before entering into a contract. These same laws prohibit a department of a city from incurring a liability in excess of an appropriation made for the department. Purchase orders or contracts are mechanisms used by the City to ensure that funding is available for a particular good or service. If your company decides to provide a good or service, valid emergencies excluded, without a purchase order or contract, you will not be eligible for payment.