Civil ServiceUncategorized

Examination Purchasing Agent Open-Competitive Exam #60-502





DATE OF EXAMINATION:     Saturday, APRIL 23, 2016

PLACE OF EXAMINATION:    AB Davis Middle SchoolMount Vernon, New York @ 8:30 A.M.

APPLICATION CLOSING DATE:    MARCH 23, 2016 at 3:00pm –no exceptions

SALARY:                                              $76,381.00 – $93,350.00

The eligible list established from this examination will be used to fill appropriate vacancies in the City of Mount Vernon City School District.

RESIDENCY REQUIREMENTS: Must be a resident of Westchester County for not less than one year preceding the date of the written examination.   Successful Mt. Vernon candidates MAY be given preference in appointment.


  • Graduation from a regionally accredited or New York State registered college or university with a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting, Business Administration, Public Administration, Economics or closely field; AND 1 year of experience in large scale purchasing of a wide variety of commodities; OR                                                                                          
  • Graduation from a regionally accredited or New York State registered college of university with an Associate’s Degree in Accounting, Business or Public Administration, Economics or closely related field AND 3 years of experience in large scale purchasing of a variety of commodities; OR
  • Graduation from high school or possession of a GED and 5 years of experience in large scale purchasing of a variety of commodities; OR
  • An equivalent combination of training and experience to equal the limits of A, B and C above.                            

SPECIAL REQUIREMENT FOR APPOINTING IN SCHOOL DISTRICTS: In accordance with the Safe School Against Violence in Education (SAVE) legislation, Chapter 180 of the Laws of 2000, and by the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education, candidates for appointment in school district must obtain clearance for employment from the State Education Department prior to employment based upon a fingerprint and criminal history background check.

NOTE: For appointment from the resulting eligible list, applicants with a foreign high school diploma must submit a course by course evaluation of their educational credentials. You must pay the required evaluation fee. Evaluations will be accepted from services such as: WORLD EDUCATION SERVICES, INC., P.O. BOX 5087, NEW YORK, NY 10274 – 212-966-6311, GLOBE LANGUAGE SERVICES, INC. 319 BROADWAY #200, NEW YORK, NY 10027, 212-227-1994, OR INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION RESEARCH FOUNDATION, INC. P.O. BOX 3665, CULVER CITY, CA. 90231.

DUTIES: The purchasing agent performs a variety of tasks in connection with the purchase of a wide range of material, supplies, and equipment for the Mt. Vernon School District. The purchasing agent is responsible for interviewing salesmen, and for passing upon all purchases. The position also involves responsibility for analyzing bids, making recommendations to the Clerk of the Board regarding purchases. The work is reviewed in a general manner by reviewing reports. Does related work as required.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

REQUIRED KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES: Thorough knowledge of markets, trade conditions, business methods and purchasing practices in general, including a knowledge of a wide range of commodities; thorough knowledge of modern principles and practices of governmental purchasing; good knowledge of current practices governing the preparation of purchase specifications; good knowledge of current studies and literature in the field of government purchasing; ability to get along well with others; integrity; initiative; resourcefulness; superior buying judgment; good address; physical condition commensurate with the demands of the position.

SUBJECTS OF EXAMINATION: The written test will cover knowledge, skills and/or abilities in the following areas:

1) ARITHMETIC COMPUTATION WITH CALCULATOR;                                  





  • ARITHMETIC COMPUTATION WITH CALCULATOR – These questions test for the ability to use a calculator to do basic computations. Questions will involve addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. You may also be asked to calculate averages, to use percents, and to round an answer to the nearest whole number. You should bring with you a hand-held battery-or-solar-powered calculator for use on this test. You will not be permitted to use the calculator function on your cell phone.                                            
  • PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICES FOR PURCHASING – These questions test for candidates’ knowledge of the principles guiding governmental purchasing operations and the ability to put them into practice. These questions may deal with but are not necessarily limited to such matters as the analysis of bids, the use of specifications, the award of contracts, the analysis of market factors that can affect the cost of a purchase, and the application of a set of rules to determine how the proceed with a purchase. Some arithmetic computations may be necessary. No specific knowledge of NYS purchasing laws, rules and regulations will be required to answer these questions.
  • PREPARING WRITTEN MATERIAL – These questions test for the ability to present information clearly and accurately, and to organize paragraphs logically and comprehensibly. For some questions, you will be given information in two or three sentences followed by four restatements of the information. You must then choose the best version. For other questions, you will be given paragraphs with their sentences out of order. You must then choose, from four suggestions, the best order for the sentences.
  • UNDERSTANDING AND INTERPRETING WRITTEN MATERIAL – These questions test how well you comprehend written material. You will be provided with brief reading selections and will be asked questions about the selections. All the information required to answer the questions will be presented in the selections; you will not be required to have any special knowledge relating to the subject areas of the selections.                                                                                                                          

The New York State Department of Civil Service has not prepared a test guide for this examination. However, candidates may find information in the publication “How to take a written test” helpful in preparing for this test. This publication is available on line at:


Candidates are required to attain a final average rating of 70 in order to be eligible to have their name placed on the eligible list established as a result of this examination. Life on the list will be stated at the time the list is established.

APPLICATION FEE: A $15.00 NON-REFUNDABLE FILING FEE IS REQUIRED FOR THIS EXAMINATION FOR MOUNT VERNON RESIDENTS AND A $25.00 NON-REFUNDABLE FILING FEE IS REQUIRED FOR NON-RESIDENTS. The applicable fee is required and must accompany your application. If your application is received without the required fee, it will be considered incomplete and you will not be admitted to the examination. Only MONEY ORDERS will be accepted for the applications fee. The money order should be made payable to the City of Mount Vernon and be sure to write the examination number on the money order. CASH OR CHECKS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED. Because NO REFUND will be made, you are urged to compare your qualifications carefully with the requirements for admission.

FEE WAIVER INFORMATION: A waiver of the application fee will be allowed if you are unemployed and are primarily responsible for the support of a household. In addition, a waiver of the application fee will be allowed if you are determined eligible for Medicaid, receiving Supplemental Security Income payment, or Public Assistance. All claims for an application fee waiver are subject to verification. If you can verify eligibility for the application fee waiver, you must complete a “Request for Application Fee Waiver” form. This form is available in the Civil Service Office. You must submit the completed fee waiver form with your completed application.

Applications are available in the Mount Vernon Municipal Civil Service Commission Office Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM or send a self-addressed, legal-sized envelope to the Civil Service Commission, Room 103 – City Hall, One Roosevelt Square, Mount Vernon, NY 10550. Applicants may also obtain applications from the City of Mount Vernon’s website at All applications must be returned to the Civil Service Commission Office on or before the application deadline date,

Applications received via mail will not be accepted if postmarked after the closing date deadline of March 23, 2016.

RELIGIOUS OBSERVERS AND DISABLED PERSONS: If special arrangements for testing are required, please indicate this on your application and submit on a separate sheet of paper and attach it to your application at time of submission. You will be notified of the alternate test date which will take place in City Hall.

ALTERNATE TEST DATE POLICY: Alternate test(s) date(s) may be arranged upon review of the circumstances according to the alternate Test Date Policy adopted April 14, 2008 by the Civil Service Commission. Under specific circumstances an alternate test date may be arranged. Your request with written documentation must be received in the Mt. Vernon Civil Service office no later than two (2) weeks preceding the examination. If an emergency prevents you from appearing for the examination, please notify the Civil Service office in writing no later than the Friday before the test date and provide verifiable documentation of the reason. A determination will be made as to if an alternate test date will be scheduled.

It is the responsibility of the candidate to notify the Civil Service Office of any change in name or address.

No attempt will be made to locate candidates who have moved.