Carnegie Mellon University

Glossary of Terms:  Signature Authority for Legally Binding Commitments and Documents

Aggregate Value: The sum of all the current and future amounts that are legally committed to be paid by the university under the relevant agreement (or series of related agreements).

Agreement: A contract, license or other legally-binding commitment or agreement, irrespective of the title or designation of the document, with a third party, including, but not limited to, sponsored project or research agreements, subcontracts, purchase orders, contracts for the purchase of goods or services, construction or design agreements, software or other intellectual property licenses, leases, agreements relating to the sale or purchase of real estate, gift agreements, loan agreements, notes, letter agreements, memoranda of understanding and memoranda of agreement.  

Authorized Official: A university official who has been authorized by the Board of Trustees to execute agreements for and on behalf of the university.

Debt Financing: An agreement that involves the acquisition of funds by the university from a third party by borrowing, including those evidenced by bonds, notes or similar instruments, but excludes the acquisition of funds from a third party by borrowing (i) for the purchase of tangible personal property, such as equipment, or (ii) as required by governmental agencies or organizations in connection with the conduct of the university’s business (such as obtaining bonds or letters of credit as required to obtain a construction-related permit or to comply with an educational law of a state).

Execute: To sign or enter into an agreement for and on behalf of the university.