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Award Terms Now an Option at NASA

On August 24, 2017, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) final rule amending the NASA Federal Acquisition Supplement by adding a policy on the use of “award terms” will take effect. Award terms are an incentive for contractors to go above and beyond a satisfactory performance to obtain an additional period of performance. Each award term cannot exceed one year in length, but is in addition to the base and option years. The difference between exercising an option and an awa
 

As One Protest Door Closes, Another One Opens

By Heather Mims The protest saga of the Department of Education’s contracts for collection services for defaulted student loans has now been going on for over a year – and the contracts are worth fighting for as it is for a roughly $2.8 billion debt collection procurement. As a refresher, forty-seven companies originally submitted bids in response to the Department of Education’s RFP but only seven companies originally received contract awards back in December 2016. The unsuccessful offerors s
 

Are You A Federal Acquisition Service GSA MAS Contract Holder?

The General Services Administration (GSA) Federal Acquisition Service (FAS) is planning to refresh all GSA Multiple Award Schedules (MAS) to incorporate provision and clause updates in April 2017. This update will align MAS solicitations and contracts with recent policy changes, including small business subcontracting improvements and updates to Non-Federal Entity access to Schedules, including under the Disaster Purchasing Program. These regulatory changes further codify the Non-Federal entity
 

Are VA FSS Contracts Still a Viable Option for Contractors in the VA Marketplace?

By Wayne Simpson, CFCM, CSCM, Centre Consultant Some U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Federal Supply Schedule Contractors, and prospective contractors are questioning the value of the VA FSS Program.  Changes to VA’s Acquisition Regulations (VAAR) since the unanimous U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision in the matter of Kingdomware Technologies, Inc. vs. the United States (Kingdomware) and the VA Strategic Acquisition Center’s (SAC) use of open market procurement strategies in its faile
 

Are Federal Contractors Liable for Complying With the Drug-Free Work Place Act?

By Tyler Freiberger, While attitudes about Marijuana and state laws controlling the drug continue to shift toward recreational use, the common advice has been that most employers may still terminate employees for even medical use of the drug unless restricted in particular states. In fact, typically the rule has been that if you are a government contractor, you are required to prohibit its use by your employees. While many states have moved toward protecting medical, or even recreational use of

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

Annual Review Speaker Lineup

ANNUAL REVIEW 2018: Hot Issues in Federal Contracting | Speaker Lineup   Threase Baker – Panel Discussion: Types of Contract Vehicles Ms. Threase Baker is the President at ABBTECH Professional Resources, Inc. She joined ABBTECH in 2001 and has more than twenty-five years’ of experience in all areas of the staffing industry with particular emphasis on corporate recruiting, executive placement and staff augmentation. Her customer focus includes both the government and private sector. Prior t

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

AND THE WINNER (SO FAR) IS VETERAN-OWNED SMALL BUSINESS!

By Jack Delman We promised to keep you updated on the Federal Circuit’s disposition of a case addressing the collide between the Veterans Benefits, Health Care and Information Technology Act of 2006 (VBA) and the Javits-Wagner-O’Day Act (JWOD) in procurements at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Each statute provides valuable award preferences to different disadvantaged small businesses, but which statute has priority? In Kingdomware Technologies., Inc. v. United States, 136 S. Ct. 1969

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

An Agency Taking Corrective Action Does Not Necessarily Mean You Will Receive Your Protests Costs

In a GAO decision released September 13, 2017, the GAO denied Walker Development & Trading Group, Inc.’s (“Walker”) request for reconsideration of the denial of its costs. On January 2, 2017, Walker filed a protest arguing that the Department of Veterans Affairs (“VA”) did not properly set a requirement aside for small businesses. In the VA’s report, the contracting officer stated that, after performing market research, she did not have a reasonable expectation that two or more capable smal

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

America’s Continuing Independent Contractor Conundrum

Employees are expensive. It’s little surprise market forces incentivize companies to search for a way to get the same work out of people without paying for holidays, accommodating disabilities, and paying overtime, among countless other requirements. Imagine if you could save all this money within the law and avoid the risk of employment discrimination lawsuits. With all these savings your company could lower the price of your services/goods and edge out the competition. Figure out how to replac
 

Amazon.gov?

NDAA Provision Requires Federal Procurement Through ‘Online Marketplaces’ A provision contained in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018 (NDAA), H.R. 2810, covers “Procurement Through Online Marketplaces.”  Section 801 of Act requires the Administrator of the General Services Administration (GSA) to establish for government-wide use a program to procure products through online marketplaces for the purposes of expediting procurements while ensuring reasonable pricing of com
 

Agency Found to Have Reasonably Canceled Solicitation Due to Protest

In a decision on July 10, 2017, the GAO found that an agency reasonably canceled its solicitation after a protest where the agency’s requirements were time dependent. Tien Walker, a small business, protested the cancelation of the solicitation issued by the Department of State for public opinion polling surveys to be conducted in South Asia. Specifically, the selected contractor was to conduct two public opinion surveys in Afghanistan, with the first survey to be completed before the start of t
 

Actual False Claim Not Needed For Viable FCA Retaliation Claim?

By David Warner Last month, a divided U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit ruled that a plaintiff adequately alleges “protected activity” under the False Claims Act’s whistleblower protection provision. This provision is where individuals report concerns related to conduct, that could reasonably lead to a viable FCA action. The First Circuit reversed the lower court’s prior dismissal of the action, which was based in part on the absence of any allegations of a false claim. The plaintiff
 

A Potential End to the Hate-Hate Relationship with LPTA

By Stephanie Fine, Esq. Good news for Federal contractors.  The recently enacted National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) will expand limitations on the use of the much-criticized Lowest Price Technically Acceptable (LPTA) source selection that was previously imposed on the Department of Defense to now include civilian agencies. The LPTA procurement process requires source selection officials to choose the lowest price proposal that satisfies the minimum technical requirements without regard

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

A Newer Source Selection Procedure You May Not Know

In April 2016, the Department of Defense (DoD) published a memorandum expanding DoD Source Selection Procedures beyond Tradeoff and Lowest Price Technically Acceptable (LPTA) to include Value Adjusted Total Evaluated Price (VATEP) Tradeoff. This newer procedure’s intent is to help define how the government evaluates contractor capabilities that go beyond minimum requirements and reach the government’s objective. Although it’s been an option since April, we’re finding that many people still are

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

2019 Trend Predictions for the Government Contracting Industry

By Angel N. Davis, Happy New Year and Happy Contracting! As we enter 2019, we have the opportunity to make and commit to several resolutions with the hope of remaining steadfast and following through with at least a few. As an industry, a company and an individual now is the time to set goals for the new year. What can we expect in 2019? 2019 will undoubtedly continue being a year of technological disruption. Due to that, this year our government will place a high value on: Acquisition ref
 

2019 Trend Predictions for the Government Contracting Industry

By Angel N. Davis, Happy New Year and Happy Contracting! As we enter 2019, we have the opportunity to make and commit to several resolutions with the hope of remaining steadfast and following through with at least a few. As an industry, a company and an individual now is the time to set goals for the new year. What can we expect in 2019? 2019 will undoubtedly continue being a year of technological disruption. Due to that, this year our government will place a high value on: Acquisition ref
 

2019 Trend Predictions for the Government Contracting Industry

By Angel Davis Happy New Year and Happy Contracting! As we enter 2019, we have the opportunity to make and commit to several resolutions with the hope of remaining steadfast and following through with at least a few. As an industry, a company and an individual now is the time to set goals for the new year. What can we expect in 2019? 2019 will undoubtedly continue being a year of technological disruption. Due to that, this year our government will place a high value on: Acquisition reform
 

$650 Million in Small Business Awards Given to Fraudulent Companies

By Tyler Freiberger  In 2016 alone, the federal government spent $58.8 billion with minority or woman owned small businesses and another $16.3 billion with businesses run by disabled veterans. The vast majority of these prime contract awards were specifically not the result of open market, merit based competition. Rather, it was the result of the government openly steering more government dollars toward groups otherwise disadvantaged in society.  While there is some debate over the effectivenes
 

“The Tale of Billy Joe Hunt” – And, False Claims Act Statute of Limitations is Longer Thank You Might Think

By David Warner Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court resolved a split between the federal circuit courts of appeal concerning the statute of limitations for False Claims Act (FCA) suits in which the government does not intervene. Unfortunately for contractors, the Court held that a ten-year (as opposed to six-year) limitations period can apply. As a result, contractors face the expanded prospect of defending FCA matters that are already a decade old at the time of filing. “Good luck” locating yo
 

“The Frog That Roared?” Supreme Court’s Weyerhaeuser Co. Decision May Open The Door For Increased Scrutiny of Agency Decision-Making

Last week the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in Weyerhaeuser Co. v. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regarding an agency determination that certain lands were a “critical habitat” for the endangered dusky gopher frog and could not be developed. While some contemporaneous accounts of the oral arguments anticipated a likely split along ideological lines, the Court’s eventual decision was a unanimous one that overturned the lower courts’ affirmation of the agency’s actions. While th

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

“The Frog That Roared?” Supreme Court’s Weyerhaeuser Co. Decision May Open The Door For Increased Scrutiny of Agency Decision-Making

Last week the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in Weyerhaeuser Co. v. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regarding an agency determination that certain lands were a “critical habitat” for the endangered dusky gopher frog and could not be developed. While some contemporaneous accounts of the oral arguments anticipated a likely split along ideological lines, the Court’s eventual decision was a unanimous one that overturned the lower courts’ affirmation of the agency’s actions. While th

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

“The Frog That Roared?” Supreme Court’s Weyerhaeuser Co. Decision May Open The Door For Increased Scrutiny of Agency Decision-Making

Last week the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in Weyerhaeuser Co. v. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regarding an agency determination that certain lands were a “critical habitat” for the endangered dusky gopher frog and could not be developed. While some contemporaneous accounts of the oral arguments anticipated a likely split along ideological lines, the Court’s eventual decision was a unanimous one that overturned the lower courts’ affirmation of the agency’s actions. While th

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

 

“Professional Compensation” Sinks Contract Award

Last week, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released the public version of its decision sustaining the protest of contractor A-P-T Research, Inc. with respect to a procurement with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for various support services. In addition to a potential impaired objectivity organizational conflict of interest, the protest was sustained because the awardee’s proposed professional compensation was at the low end of the experience and compensation
 

“NAICS 2017” Revisions

On April 18, 2017, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) published a proposed rule in the Federal Register to amend its regulations to adopt and incorporate the U.S Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) revisions for 2017, identified as “NAICS 2017.”  SBA proposes to adopt the updated table of size standards effective October 1, 2017, to coincide with beginning of the government’s next fiscal year. NAICS 2017 creates 21 new industri
 

“Let’s Talk About Sex[ual Harassment], Baby!”

By David Warner I had intended to write about the Supreme Court’s recent decision denying certiorari in the 11th Circuit’s decision in Evans v. Georgia Regional Hospital, thereby declining to resolve the existing circuit split concerning whether sexual orientation is a protected characteristic under Title VII. But then yet another story dropped with high profile allegations of sexual harassment, and the siren call of timely “click-bait” won out over the finer points of Supreme Court jurispruden

Centre Law & Consulting

Centre Law & Consulting

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