askus icon

Handbook of Business Procedures

Date published: 
Last revised: 
Issued by: 

February 17, 2005
April 15, 2014
Inventory Services


Part 16. Inventory Control and Property Management - Table of Contents


A. Scope

The following section prescribes procedures for the care, maintenance, and utilization of Government property in the possession or control of UT Austin or a subcontractor of UT Austin in accordance with Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 52.245-1.

Federal Acquisition Regulation

B. Responsibility

From the time of receipt until relieved of responsibility by the appropriate Government Contracting Officer or property administrator, UT Austin is responsible for the security, maintenance, and proper utilization of Government-owned property in its custody. This responsibility requires that the Project Director, as custodian, apply sound business practices in controlling equipment and follow the applicable provisions of the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), the related property control procedures of the funding agency, and the provisions of the grant or contract.

Federal Acquisition Regulation

C. Storage of Government-Owned Property

Only authorized personnel will be allowed in storage areas. The storage areas will be kept clean and have ample fire protection. Outside storage areas will have lights and a fence. Chemicals, hazardous substances, and flammable materials will have separate storage areas in compliance with Federal, State, and Local regulations. Separate storage areas will be provided for:

  • Items temporarily removed from end item
  • Repairable items
  • Serviceable items
  • Generated scrap by metal content

D. Removal of Government Equipment from UT Premises

Government equipment is not to be removed permanently without written permission from the Contracting Officer. Equipment may be checked out for short periods of time if the following conditions are met:

  • The removal is essential to the research being conducted.
  • Repair or testing of the equipment.
  • Return to the U.S. Government.
  • A written receipt is signed by the person removing the equipment and retained on file by the Project Director.
  • The inventory record will be updated as to the new location by the Project Director or by Inventory personnel.
  • All government property being shipped for repair, testing, to another research location, or returned to the U.S. Government will be shipped either on a Government Bill of Lading or paid by contract/grant funds. Equipment will be insured if paid by contract/grant funds for full value. All shipping documents will be annotated "Government-owned Property."
  • Proper care shall be taken to ensure that all Government-owned property being moved from one location to another is protected from damage through the use of proper packing, special crates or coverings, and adequate use of handling equipment (fork lifts, etc.). Standard safety procedures will be utilized in all instances.

E. Maintenance of Equipment

1. Preventive Maintenance

The preventive maintenance measures are designed to preserve and prolong the useful life of the property, minimize the incidence of failure through breakage of its component parts, and promote its full utility through maintenance of high standards of condition and performance. The preventive maintenance program will include the following:

  • Provision of a proper environment for the preservation of the property, compatible with its use in performance of authorized research.
  • Cleaning and painting, or application of suitable preservative coatings to equipment, as required for surface protection and good appearance as well as proper storage and preservation of accessories and special tools furnished with an item of equipment but not regularly used with it.
  • Routine daily cleaning and lubrication of metalworking machines. A thorough cleaning and lubrication will be scheduled weekly. Removal of sludge, chips, and cutting oils from metalworking machines that will not be used for an extended period of time.
  • A constant surveillance by cognizant persons of all property, especially machine shop equipment and vehicles, for evidence of improper maintenance, malfunction, or wear, and the reporting of equipment shortcomings to their supervisors.
  • A periodic inspection and servicing of equipment to assure detection of maladjustment, wear, or impending breakdown.

2. Remedial Maintenance

The remedial maintenance measures are designed to correct deficiencies in equipment as they become known. Remedial maintenance of property will include prompt replacement or repair of worn or broken component parts, except in cases where it is not economically advantageous.

3. Capital Rehabilitation

In the event that a piece of Government-owned equipment needs major repairs to bring the item back to its original condition, the Project Director shall get permission from the Contracting Officer before doing the needed work.

4. Cannibalization of Government Equipment

Cannibalization is the removal or exchange of parts or assemblies from an item of equipment to replace a damaged or worn out part or assembly of another item of equipment. In keeping with sound maintenance practices, cannibalization of a Government property item must not be undertaken until approval is obtained from the appropriate Government Contracting Officer. If necessary, assistance in gaining this approval may be obtained from the Office of Accounting.

Office of Accounting

F. Utilization of Government Property

Government-owned equipment shall be used only for those purposes related to the assigned contract/grant and/or may be used for other research projects if it does not interfere with the use for the main project. Rental or use fees charged to non-federal grants and contracts will be determined from historical costs to operate equipment (supplies and maintenance), and such charges will not exceed charges from local vendors that rent like equipment. These charges will be approved and reviewed annually or if circumstances change.

The Project Director is responsible for determining minimum usage levels of Government-owned property with an acquisition value of $5000 or more. If actual use drops below this level, an analysis of need shall be made, and retention justified. If there is no longer a need for the item, the Project Director shall make it known to the Office of Accounting, where action will be taken to reassign the equipment elsewhere within the UT Austin complex or as directed by the appropriate Government agency.

Office of Accounting



Part 16. Inventory Control and Property Management - Table of Contents