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Purchasing Department


The Purchasing Department handles procurement and contract management duties for Winnebago County.  Purchasing staff is responsible for most purchasing greater than $25K, except for the Highway Department’s professional services and road and bridge construction.  Purchasing policies and procedures are set forth in Chapter 2, Article IV, Division 3, of the County Code of Ordinances. Click Here for Full Details

If interested in doing business with the County, you can register with Vendor Self-Services.   Vendors are always welcome to visit the Purchasing Department office.  We want to know about your product and services.  To arrange for a phone call, contact the department staff at 815-319-4380 or  The Purchasing Department office is open Monday through Friday from 8:00am-12:00pm & 1:00-5:00pm.  Closed for Federal holidays.

How to Do Business with Winnebago County

The Purchasing Department is responsible for providing the necessary equipment, services and supplies to meet the requirements of offices and departments within Winnebago County Government.   To extent permitted by law, the County will spend taxpayer money wisely and fairly; encourage fair and equitable treatment through broad-based competition; protect against fraud, favoritism, extravagance and corruption; obtain the best commodities and services at the lowest price practicable; provide safeguards for the maintenance of a procurement system of quality and integrity; meet the needs of the County of Winnebago through continuous improvement of purchasing systems and procedure; promote economic development by encouraging the participation of Winnebago County businesses, by providing equal opportunity for minority and women-owned businesses, and for veterans; and by applying environmentally sound practices in the procurement process.


The Purchasing Department is responsible for the Central Services, all purchasing, bidding, executions of contracts and purchasing orders, contract management and handling of surplus and obsolete equipment and supplies. 

Central Services

The Central Services provides shipping, mail services, print services, purchasing-card, copier management, and vehicle pool services for County departments.

Surplus and Obsolete Supplies

The Purchasing Department is responsible for stocks of all supplies, materials and equipment, which are no longer used or which have become obsolete, worn out or scrapped.  The Director of Purchasing can sell supplies, materials and equipment which cannot be used by any department; or which have been found not to be required for public use; or to exchange or trade-in such articles in part or full payment of new supplies, material or equipment of a similar nature.

Surplus Items

The Purchasing Department is responsible for disposing or selling of all County surplus such as office equipment and cars and the Highway Department’s equipment and large vehicles.  We also handle the Sheriff’s Evidence Locker items which can be anything from golf clubs, bikes, watches, electronics, hand tools, sporting goods, collectables to Nike shoes and fur coats.   

GovDeals handles the surplus sales for the County.  GovDeals' online auction platform provides services to government, educational, and related entities for the sale of surplus assets to the public.

Details on how to bid and pick-up of surplus items are explained, in detail, on the GovDeals website. 

Please visit for more information.  Use GovDeals’Advanced Search tool to locate Winnebago County auction items.

Contract Execution & Purchase Orders

A signed official contract or purchase order containing a contract or purchase order number are the primary methods of obligating the County The Purchasing Department provides the execution of contracts and purchase orders solicited through open competition for materials, equipment, services, supplies, construction, and construction related services and professional services required by the County.

Vendor Self Service (VSS)

Starting in late 2019, the County developed an on-line Vendor Self Service(VSS) database for potential bidders.  You also have the ability to update your profile, including address, contact information and commodities information.  Register at the VSS link under “Additional Pages”.

How the County Buys

The Purchasing Ordinance, with few exceptions, requires free and open competitive bidding for all requirements for goods, services and construction exceeding the cost of $25,000 after advertisement. This type of procurement is called "Competitive Bidding."

If the amount of the purchase is less than $25,000, such purchase shall be let in the open market after soliciting quotes by e-procurement, telephone, or email. This is called "Small Purchases or Open Market."

Professional services contracts, which, by their nature, are not adapted to award to the low, responsive bid, are awarded by approval of the County Board when they exceed $50,000 in value.

Solicitation Types

Invitation for Bids (IFB) and Request for Proposals (RFP) and Request for Quotes (RFQ) are posted on this website under "Bid Opportunities - current"

Emergency Purchases

The purchase of goods, services, or construction items, when there exists a threat to public health, welfare, or safety, or to prevent or minimize serious disruption of government services, shall be considered an “Emergency Purchase”.   A written determination is submitted to the County Board for all emergency purchases over $25,000 or $50,000 for professional services.

Terms & Conditions

Please review the County’s Terms and Conditions and other helpful documents, found in “Additional Pages” in the upper right corner of this page.  

Specifications and Scope of Work in Proposals or Bids

When you receive the detailed specification or scope of work for a requirement, read it carefully.  A specification or scope of work is a formal statement of the County’s needs. If you offer substitutions to a brand name cited in the specification, you must obtain an approval for the substitution prior to bidding otherwise your bid may be disqualified.  The specification or scope of work communicates to the Bidder all the details of the product or service required, and it regulates the execution of the contracts.  Prior to submitting your bid/proposal/quote, submit all question(s) or inquiries regarding the specification  in writing to the Director of Purchasing prior to bid opening date, or the deadline date and time for inquiries; whichever is earlier.

Small Purchases or Open Market Procedures

Micro Purchases:  Micro purchases are procurement of that which are less than $5,000. There is no requirement to obtain competitive quotes, but efforts should be made to distribute purchases equitably among qualified providers.

Small Purchases: Small purchases that are at least $5,000 and less than $25,000 may be obtained and awarded by Department Heads and/or the Director of Purchasing where there has been a competitive price quotation process and at least three (3) informal quotations have been sought prior to selection. No formal bids shall be required.

Contract & Purchasing Orders

A signed official contract or purchase order containing a contract, award agreement or purchase order number are the primary methods of obligating the County. The authority for administration of these contracts and purchase orders is vested in the Director of Purchasing.

The Director of Purchasing will execute all modifications to purchase orders and contracts affecting purchase, such as prices, terms, delivery dates, quantity and quality.  A verbal or written instruction issued by a County employee regarding orders without a County purchase order or contract, are the responsibility of the person placing the order, not the County.  The unauthorized action will not be recognized by the County, and therefore payment will not be made.

Cooperative Joint Purchasing and State Contracts

Cooperative Joint Purchasing Contracts are those contracts that have been executed by the County with vendors who have agreed to offer the same pricing to other municipalities and government entities.

State Contracts and other Cooperative Joint Purchasing Contracts may be utilized by the County Purchasing Department when it is in the best interest of the County to purchase from these agreements. Subject to applicable State statutes, the County may either participate in, sponsor, conduct, or administer a Cooperative Purchasing Agreement for the procurement of goods, services, or construction with one or more public agencies.  Such cooperative purchasing may include, but is not limited to, joint or multi-party contracts between public procurement units and open-ended state public procurement unit contracts and Federal contracts, which are made available to other public procurement units after having been bid by another public procurement unit where required. These cooperative purchases may be done without the formality of bidding set forth in this Ordinance. County Board award procedures, as detailed, must still be followed.

Bid Protests

Any actual or prospective bidder or contractor, who is aggrieved in connection with the solicitation or award of a contract, may protest to the Director of Purchasing.  Any protest must be submitted in writing within five (5) business days from the issuance of the solicitation, addendum, and notice of award or other decision by the Purchasing Department.

Contract Compliance

Contract compliance is the process of reviewing and managing contracts and agreements that bind the County.  Policies that determine how contracts will be processed fall under the responsibility of the County Board and shall be enforced by County Administration and administered through the Purchasing Department.

Contract Administration

Contract Administration is the ongoing process of ensuring that the terms and conditions of contracts are being implemented as agreed to by the parties. Contract Administration is the responsibility of the Purchasing Department and the requesting Department Head or Elected Official. The Department Head or Elected Official is the individual responsible for promoting the contract; including ensuring that appropriate approval is obtained.   

Resource Databases and Tools (under “Additional Pages”)

Awarded Bids & Proposals

This site is a complete list of all IFB or RFP solicitation documentation handled through the Purchasing Department since 2015.

County Contracts Database

Another searchable database going back to 2014 that documents all County issued contracts.

Purchasing Card Reports

A useful database going back to 2016 that shows all County purchases done with a County P-card.

Purchase Data Search Tool

Use the Purchases database to locate all purchases done by Purchase Order, Vendor, Department or Budget Category since 2013.

In Conclusion

The Purchasing Department staff are committed to honesty, fairness, accountability and customer service. We conduct ourselves in such a way as to build trust. You do not need to feel that you must pay some "privileged" person to secure our business. We are dedicated to open and competitive bidding as a means to obtain our requirements for all goods and services. It is important that you understand that we operate in accordance with the Winnebago County Code.  

Neither the Director of Purchasing, nor any full time County employee, shall participate directly or indirectly in a procurement.

Neither the County Director of Purchasing, nor any County employee, shall accept any payment, gratuity, or offer of employment as an inducement for the award of a contract or an order.   The offer or delivery of any such gratuity to any official or employee of the County by any vendor or contractor, shall be cause for declaring such individual or firm to be an irresponsible bidder, and for debarring him/her from the all bid opportunities.

Contact Information


Purchasing Department                                          Purchasing Staff

County Administration Building                                  Ann Johns, Director of Purchasing

404 Elm Street Room 202                                         Melinda Macias, Purchasing Specialist

Rockford, IL 61101                                                  


Hours: Daily 8:00am - Noon & 1:00pm - 5:00pm

Phone: 815-319-4380




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