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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Show me the money

    Jose Maldonado, a member of the surplus property office displays a jersey up for auction at the surplus property auction on the mall Monday afternoon. The surplus property office of procurement and contracting services holds auctions every Tuesday at its warehouse on 22nd Street.
    Jose Maldonado, a member of the surplus property office displays a jersey up for auction at the surplus property auction on the mall Monday afternoon. The surplus property office of procurement and contracting services holds auctions every Tuesday at its warehouse on 22nd Street.

    Cruiser bicycle: $35. Skateboard: $17.50. Thirty gigabyte iPod: $95. Raising over a half-million dollars per year for the university: priceless.

    The UA Surplus Property Auction, held every other Tuesday, allows people the chance to bid on lost and found items and excess university property. Yesterday the auction moved to the UA Mall from its usual home at the university’s 22nd Street Warehouse.

    Oscar Jaramillo, a material handler and property control supervisor, auctioned off bicycles, jewelry, iPods, cameras, skateboards, UA men’s basketball jerseys and other miscellaneous items.

    The change of venue to the Mall was an effort to “”give the campus community an idea of what we do and why we’re here,”” Jaramillo said.

    The majority of the items auctioned off are unclaimed lost and found items, Jaramillo said.

    “”Jewelry comes from either (University of Arizona Police Department) lost-and-found, Student Union Memorial Center lost-and-found, and the bookstore lost-and-found,”” Jaramillo said. “”If they’re not claimed, you know, in those locations in a certain period of time, they turn them into us and we auction them off.””

    Yesterday’s auction on the Mall was substantially smaller than other auctions held throughout the year, he said. While this auction lasted only about an hour due to scheduling constraints, off-site auctions can last from three to four hours and include anything from lab equipment to vehicles.

    They also auction off a lot of farm equipment, Jaramillo said. “”All that money that we generate goes back to those departments that turn it in.””

    The university benefits by making money off discarded or unclaimed items, while students, faculty, staff and Tucson residents benefit by purchasing items at a lower cost, he said.

    Krista Schmidt, an agriculture and life sciences senior, was victorious in a bidding war in which she won binoculars for $30.

    “”I took a look at them, they’re old but they’re really good quality,”” she said. She’s gathering “”the essentials that you need if you’re going to be any kind of outdoor biologist.””

    Calvin Paradise, a Tucson resident, purchased a Khalid Reeves warm-up jersey and Ray Owes jersey for $75. He said Reeves, a former UA basketball player, is his “”favorite player.””

    Jaramillo said he became an auctioneer because about eight or nine years ago, he was looking for a way other than “”spot bids”” to dispose of surplus items.

    “”In the beginning … we raised our revenue by 35 percent,”” he said. “”And then we introduced, a couple years ago, the Internet … So you can sit and bid.””

    The Internet has opened the bidding to a whole new group of people, Jaramillo said.

    “”A lot of people couldn’t come down, you know, on a Tuesday, so this opens up a whole new world where people can be in California, Utah … makes it really, really convenient,”” he said.

    In order to facilitate auctions in person and online at the same time, an internet clerk enters bids as Jaramillo calls them, he said.

    “”We generate probably half a million dollars a year that goes back to the university, back into the budget,”” Jaramillo said.

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