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Policies and Procedures

Finance & Administration

4-OP-B-3 Leasing of Off-Campus Facilities

Responsible Executive:​ Finance and Administration
Approving Official: Vice President for Finance and Administration
Effective Date: January 1, 2014
Last Revision Date: Unrevised at this time.
   

SPECIFIC AUTHORITY

BOG 17.001

OBJECTIVE

To specify the methods and responsibilities for obtaining lease agreements for off-campus space and to set forth uniform provisions for the University and its subordinate units when entering into lease agreements.

OVERVIEW

Departments or divisions of Florida State University having a requirement for additional space for their activities should make their needs known to the Office of the Vice-President for Finance & Administration. In the event that suitable space is not available on campus, departments or divisions having valid requirements and sufficient funds may arrange, upon approval and subject to the conditions described below, to lease facilities off-campus. Under no circumstances may a department or division of Florida State University occupy leased space prior to the lease inception date or subsequent to the expiration of the lease term. All lease agreements for off-campus space shall be processed and approved in accordance with this procedure. Any lease agreement executed by a department that is not in accordance with this procedure is not the responsibility of the University and any obligations made as a result of a non-compliant lease shall be the responsibility of the individual signing as the Lessee.

A. DEFINITIONS

The following definitions will apply throughout this procedure:

Lease

Space secured for the University's use, where control of the space resides with the University 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and the time period for use of this space is for a period of 121 days or more, is considered a lease or a long-term lease.

Off-Campus Space 

Off-Campus space is any building, structure, facility or property, either developed or undeveloped, that is not owned or held in trust for the University by an agency of the State of Florida.

Rental 

A lease covering a period of 120 continuous days or less is considered a rental. All off-campus space secured for special usage such as meetings, conferences, seminars, etc., for a period of time not to exceed 120 continuous days, is considered a rental. For rental of off-campus facilities see Policy & Procedure OP-B-6.

Use Agreement

Space secured for the University's use for a time period of 121 days or more, for 4,999 square feet or less but, where control of the space resides with a non-University entity for any period of time during the course of a day, is considered a use agreement. A use agreement may be executed by the University Lease Administrator or by the entity that has exclusive control of the space.

B. ROLE OF UNIVERSITY PERSONNEL

University Lease Administrator

When any employee of the University, its divisions, departments, institutes or centers wishes to enter into a lease agreement of private property, he or she must contact the University Lease Administrator for instructions and guidance pertaining to specific policies, procedures and documentation. The University's Lease Administrator is in the Office of the President for Finance and Administration.

Signature Authority

All lease agreements for private property by the University, its divisions, departments, institutes or centers must be signed by the President or designee. The Vice President for Finance and Administration has been delegated signature authority for leasing.

University Employees

Should any employee of the University, its divisions, departments, institutes or centers enter into or sign a lease agreement of private property without first complying with the provisions of the sections below, the employee shall be subject to appropriate University disciplinary procedures.

C. APPROVALS REQUIRED

University regulations require approval prior to entering into any negotiations for leased space or modifying an existing lease agreement. To accomplish this, a Request to Lease Space Off-Campus must be completed, approved (by signature of the appropriate individuals) and submitted to the University Lease Administrator (Office of the Vice President for Finance and Administration) at least one month prior to the date the space will be required. The Lease Administrator will work with the requesting department in developing the request and establishing the required square footage based on the State Requirements for Educational Facilities (SREF) as mandated by the Florida Department of Education's administrative codes. The Request to Lease Space Off-Campus form is considered approved when all applicable individuals have signed and are in agreement. The request should then be returned to the Lease Administrator who will work with the departmental representative to secure leased space, either through negotiations or through the bidding process, whichever is required. The Lease Administrator will prepare the bid package (if required), the Lease Agreement, and all required supporting documents.

D. DISTRIBUTION OF APPROVED LEASE DOCUMENTS

Upon receipt of the approved Lease Agreement, the University Lease Administrator will distribute a fully executed copy to an electronic portal located in campus.fsu.edu (Blackboard).  Access to these documents will be granted to anyone requesting a copy.

E. PAYMENT OF LEASES

Lease payments are considered a commodity and are not paid in advance. Lease payments should be submitted to the Accounts Payable section of the University Controller's Office at least one week prior to the end of the (monthly) rental period and are made using a Payment Request Form. The Accounts Payable section will process the payment only after confirming the fully executed lease is in the electronic portal.

F. LEASES OF 5,000 OR MORE SQUARE FEET

If 5,000 or more net rentable square feet of space is required in a privately owned building; solicitation of competitive bids is mandatory. In such instances, the Lease Administrator must receive the Request to Lease Off-Campus Space at least three months prior to the date the space is needed.

If the required space is in excess of 5,000 square feet and is located in a research and development park affiliated with the University, then the University is exempt from the bid requirements.

If the space required exceeds 20,000 net rentable square feet, a life cycle cost analysis of the building is required, and the request must be submitted at least four months prior to the date the space is needed. The life cycle cost analysis is a computer-assisted program that is run by the Department of Management Services and is accomplished at the expense of the successful bidder.

G. APPROVAL OF COMPLIANCE WITH FLORIDA BUILDING CODE

Florida Law requires that all leased space be in compliance with Florida Building Code (Florida Statutes Section 553.73). Prior to any State employee occupying a leased space, the spaces must be inspected and approved by the University's Environmental Health and Safety's Building Code Compliance Section (Florida Statute Section 553.71(5)), at the expense of the Lessor. Any areas that are found to be deficient must be brought into compliance and approved before the start of the initial term of the lease agreement.

H. OWNERSHIP DISCLOSURE

Florida Law requires full disclosure of the names and extent of interest of owners holding four percent (4%) or more of any interest in a leased property. Disclosure Statements must be complete and on file prior to the commencement of any lease and must be updated yearly prior to the commencement of any renewal period of the lease.

I. LEASE RENEWAL

If the subject lease contains a renewal clause, the department leasing the space must contact the University Lease Administrator, within the time period specified in the Lease Agreement, and submit a written request of their desire to exercise or not exercise any options to renew. The request must be made no more than six (6) months and no less than three (3) months prior to the expiration of the term indicated in the current lease.

J. QUESTIONS

Any questions regarding this procedure should be directed to the University Lease Administrator, located in the Office of the Vice President for Finance and Administration of Florida State University.

K. FORMS

The following form is used in this procedure and may be obtained via the Web or the Office of the Vice President for Finance and Administration.

Request to Lease Space Off-Campus