DoD’s Implementation of Justification for 8(a) Sole-Source Contracts

By: Kelly Lynch

In recent years, oversight and scrutiny have increased on the award of sole-source contracts to 8(a) firms. Before 2009, no Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) requirement was in place for documented justification when awarding a contract greater than $20 million to an 8(a) firm using non-competitive means. The timeline of the key changes to this process is as follows:

  • October 2009: The FY 2010 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Section 811, required that the FAR be revised to include the requirement that written justification be provided for sole-source awards to 8(a) firms. See full text of the article: FY 2010 National Defense Authorization Act
  • March 2011: The FAR was updated to reflect the requirement set forth in the FY 2010 NDAA. Agencies were required to implement the new justification requirement. The FAR requires that, as a minimum, the justification include five criteria:
    • Description of the needs of the agency concerned for the matters covered by the contract
    • Specification of the statutory provision providing the exception from the requirement to use competitive procedures in entering into the contract
    • Determination that the use of a sole-source contract is in the best interest of the agency concerned
    • Determination that the anticipated cost of the contract will be fair and reasonable
    • Such other matters as the head of the agency concerned shall specify for purposes of this section

    Continue reading DoD’s Implementation of Justification for 8(a) Sole-Source Contracts

Insight into the Department of Justice False Claims Act GFY 2012 Settlement

In October the Department of Justice released its FY 2012 data on civil FCA settlements. The data shows a surprising uptick in civil FCA settlements from prior years. In Government Fiscal Year (GFY) 2012, civil FCA settlements totaled $4.9 billion, which represented an overall increase of 62 percent from GFY 2011.  Continue reading Insight into the Department of Justice False Claims Act GFY 2012 Settlement

OMB Circular – Proposed Guidance

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Reform of Federal Policies Relating to Grants and Cooperative Agreements; Cost Principles and Administrative Requirements (including Single Audit Act)

By: Mary Karen Wills

The complete text of this proposal and a crosswalk of policy changes from the existing guidance are available on the OMB website under Proposed Policies.

This guidance is applicable to grants and cooperative agreements that involve state, local, and tribal governments, as well as institutions of higher education and nonprofit organizations. The proposal rule seeks to consolidate and streamline the requirements from OMB Circulars A-21, -89, -110 and -122. In addition, Circulars -50, -89, -102, and -133 on audits would be consolidated and streamlined. This guidance seeks to minimize the burden associated with compliance and audits for the grants and cooperative agreements with the aforementioned organizations. The goal would be to replace these eight circulars with one document, resulting in a single set of rules across these entities that currently have varying degrees of requirements.

Continue reading OMB Circular – Proposed Guidance

BRG’s GovCon Insight Blog

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Berkeley Research Group (BRG) Government Contracting experts are proud to launch the GovCon Insight blog. The government contracting marketplace is constantly evolving; as federal budgets shrink, organizations receiving federal funds will be subject to increased scrutiny, oversight, and regulations.

GovCon Insight will provide contractors with a resource that contains timely insight and analysis of regulatory updates, audit trends, and current news that impact organizations receiving federal contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements.

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of Berkeley Research Group, LLC.

Key FAR Updates

Nondisplacement of Qualified Workers Under Service Contracts – Final Rule (FAR Case 2011–028)

By: Ryan Byrd

This final rule adds FAR subpart 22.12, entitled ‘‘Nondisplacement of Qualified Workers Under Service Contracts,’’ and a related contract clause.

The regulations require that workers on a federal service contract who would otherwise lose their jobs as a result of the completion or expiration of a contract be given the right of first refusal for employment with the successor contractor. The regulations apply to all service contracts (prime and subcontractor) above the simplified acquisition threshold (currently $150,000) and their solicitations, except those excluded, that succeed contracts for the same or similar services at the same location. The FAR excludes certain types of contracts and employees from its requirements, and allows the head of a contracting department or agency to exempt any of its contracts from the regulations if it finds the requirements would not serve the purposes of the Equal Opportunity Act or would impair the federal government’s ability to procure services economically or efficiently.

Continue reading Key FAR Updates