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FAR 52.212-1 Tailored for SAP

Don Mansfield

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I recently gave a course on simplified acquisition procedures where I was again confronted with the use of the provision at FAR 52.212-1 Instructions to Offerors--Commercial Items in requests for quotations (RFQs) issued pursuant to FAR part 13. (We discussed this issue in the Wifcon forum before here and here). The problem is that the provision was not designed for use in RFQs under FAR part 13. To begin with, the provision requests "offers"--not quotations--which are different (see the definition of "offer" at FAR 2.101). The provision also includes elements that don't apply when requesting quotations under FAR part 13 (e.g., a minimum offer acceptance period, the dreaded late proposal rule, instructions on how to withdraw offers, a statement of intention to award without discussions, debriefing information, etc.). Although the FAR permits tailoring of FAR 52.212-1, it is typically just incorporated by reference without tailoring. I've wanted to create a version of FAR 52.212-1 tailored for SAP for a long time and I promised my last class that I would. As such, I submit my first draft to the Wifcon community for comment below. I've also created a side-by-side comparison of the untailored version of FAR 52.212-1 and my draft version that you can access here.

Instructions to Quoters—Commercial Items

(a) North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code and small business size standard. The NAICS code and small business size standard for this acquisition appear in Block 10 of the solicitation cover sheet (SF 1449). However, the small business size standard for a concern which submits a quotation in its own name, but which proposes to furnish an item which it did not itself manufacture, is 500 employees.

( b ) Submission of quotations. Submit quotations to the office specified in this solicitation at or before the exact time specified in this solicitation. Quotations may be submitted on the SF 1449, letterhead stationery, or as otherwise specified in the solicitation. As a minimum, quotations must show-

(1) The solicitation number;

(2) The time specified in the solicitation for receipt of quotations;

(3) The name, address, and telephone number of the quoter;

(4) A technical description of the items being quoted in sufficient detail to evaluate compliance with the requirements in the solicitation. This may include product literature, or other documents, if necessary;

(5) Terms of any express warranty;

(6) Price and any discount terms;

(7) “Remit to” address, if different than mailing address;

(8) A completed copy of the representations and certifications at FAR 52.212-3 (see FAR 52.212-3( b ) for those representations and certifications that the quoter shall complete electronically);

(9) Acknowledgment of Solicitation Amendments;

(10) Past performance information, when included as an evaluation factor, to include recent and relevant contracts for the same or similar items and other references (including contract numbers, points of contact with telephone numbers and other relevant information); and

(11) If the quotation is not submitted on the SF 1449, include a statement specifying the extent of agreement with all terms, conditions, and provisions included in the solicitation. Quotations that fail to furnish required representations or information, or reject the terms and conditions of the solicitation may be excluded from consideration.

( c ) Product samples. When required by the solicitation, product samples shall be submitted at or prior to the time specified for receipt of quotations. Unless otherwise specified in this solicitation, these samples shall be submitted at no expense to the Government, and returned at the sender’s request and expense, unless they are destroyed during preaward testing.

(d) Multiple quotations. Quoters are encouraged to submit multiple quotations presenting alternative terms and conditions or commercial items for satisfying the requirements of this solicitation. Each quotation submitted will be evaluated separately.

(e) Late submissions.

(1) Quoters are responsible for submitting quotations so as to reach the Government office designated in the solicitation by the time specified in the solicitation. If no time is specified in the solicitation, the time for receipt is 4:30 p.m., local time, for the designated Government office on the date that quotations are due.

(2) Any quotation received at the Government office designated in the solicitation after the exact time specified for receipt of quotations is late and will not be considered unless it is received before award is made and the Contracting Officer determines that accepting the late quotation would not unduly delay the acquisition.

(3) If an emergency or unanticipated event interrupts normal Government processes so that quotations cannot be received at the Government office designated for receipt of quotations by the exact time specified in the solicitation, and urgent Government requirements preclude amendment of the solicitation or other notice of an extension of the closing date, the time specified for receipt of quotations will be deemed to be extended to the same time of day specified in the solicitation on the first work day on which normal Government processes resume.

(f) Contract award. The Government intends to evaluate quotations and issue a purchase order based on the initial quotations received. Therefore, the quoter’s initial quotation should contain the quoter’s best terms from a price and technical standpoint. The Government reserves the right to request revised quotations from, or negotiate final purchase order terms with, one or more, but not all, quoters if later determined by the Contracting Officer to be necessary. However, the Contracting Officer will not establish a competitive range, conduct discussions, or otherwise use the procedures described at FAR 15.306. The Government may reject any or all quotations if such action is in the public interest; and issue a purchase order to other than the quoter with the lowest priced quotation.

(g) Multiple awards. The Government may issue a purchase order for any item or group of items of a quotation, unless the quoter qualifies the quotation by specific limitations. Unless otherwise provided in the Schedule, quotations may not be submitted for quantities less than those specified. The Government reserves the right to make an award on any item for a quantity less than the quantity quoted, at the unit prices quoted, unless the quoter specifies otherwise in the quotation.

(h) Availability of requirements documents cited in the solicitation.

(1)(i) The GSA Index of Federal Specifications, Standards and Commercial Item Descriptions, FPMR Part 101-29, and copies of specifications, standards, and commercial item descriptions cited in this solicitation may be obtained for a fee by submitting a request to-

GSA Federal Supply Service Specifications Section

Suite 8100

470 East L’Enfant Plaza, SW

Washington, DC 20407

Telephone (202) 619-8925

Facsimile (202) 619-8978.
(ii) If the General Services Administration, Department of Agriculture, or Department of Veterans Affairs issued this solicitation, a single copy of specifications, standards, and commercial item descriptions cited in this solicitation may be obtained free of charge by submitting a request to the addressee in paragraph (h)(1)(i) of this provision. Additional copies will be issued for a fee.

(2) Most unclassified Defense specifications and standards may be downloaded from the following ASSIST websites:

(i) ASSIST (https://assist.dla.mil/online/start/).

(ii) Quick Search (http://quicksearch.dla.mil/).

(iii) ASSISTdocs.com (http://assistdocs.com).

(3) Documents not available from ASSIST may be ordered from the Department of Defense Single Stock Point (DoDSSP) by-

(i) Using the ASSIST Shopping Wizard (https://assist.dla.mil/wizard/index.cfm);

(ii) Phoning the DoDSSP Customer Service Desk (215) 697-2179, Mon-Fri, 0730 to 1600 EST; or

(iii) Ordering from DoDSSP, Building 4, Section D, 700 Robbins Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19111-5094, Telephone (215) 697-2667/2179, Facsimile (215) 697-1462.

(4) Nongovernment (voluntary) standards must be obtained from the organization responsible for their preparation, publication, or maintenance.

(i) Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) Number. (Applies to all quotations exceeding $3,000, and quotations of $3,000 or less if the solicitation requires the Contractor to be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) database.) The quoter shall enter, in the block with its name and address on the cover page of its quotation, the annotation “DUNS” or “DUNS+4” followed by the DUNS or DUNS+4 number that identifies the quoter’s name and address. The DUNS+4 is the DUNS number plus a 4-character suffix that may be assigned at the discretion of the quoter to establish additional SAM records for identifying alternative Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) accounts (see FAR Subpart 32.11) for the same concern. If the quoter does not have a DUNS number, it should contact Dun and Bradstreet directly to obtain one. A quoter within the United States may contact Dun and Bradstreet by calling 1-866-705-5711 or via the internet at http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform. A quoter located outside the United States must contact the local Dun and Bradstreet office for a DUNS number. The quoter should indicate that it is a quoter for a Government contract when contacting the local Dun and Bradstreet office.

(j) System for Award Management. Unless exempted by an addendum to this solicitation, by submission of a quotation, the quoter acknowledges the requirement that a prospective awardee shall be registered in the SAM database prior to award, during performance and through final payment of any contract resulting from this solicitation. If the Quoter does not become registered in the SAM database in the time prescribed by the Contracting Officer, the Contracting Officer will proceed to award to the next otherwise successful registered Quoter. Quoters may obtain information on registration and annual confirmation requirements via the SAM database accessed throughhttps://www.acquisition.gov.

(k) Requests for information. The contracting officer will not notify unsuccessful quoters that responded to this solicitation. Quoters may request information on award(s) resulting from this solicitation from the contracting officer.

Please provide comments and questions below.



13 Comments


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Change paragraph (f) to read as follows:

(f) Issuance of purchase order. Your quotation should contain your best technical and price terms. The Contracting Officer may reject any or all quotations. The Contracting Officer may issue a purchase order to other than the quoter with the lowest priced quotation. After the evaluation of quotations, the Contracting Officer may negotiate final terms with one or more quoters of the Government’s choice before issuing any purchase order. The Contracting Officer will not negotiate with any quoters other than those of the Government’s choice and will not use the formal source selection procedures described in FAR Part 15.

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Thanks, Vern. You say it better. However, the plain language style in the first sentence (i.e., "you" and "your") is not consistent with the rest of the provision. Maybe I can create another version that's written in plain language.

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You have this theme around not using terms interchangeable such as not using offers and using quotes. It would seem difficult to change every reference of the term offer or offerors in a part 13 solicitation. Are we allowed to tailor the SF1449? Offer and offeror are found a few times in this form.

I think your instructions read well though.

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No, I don't think you are allowed to tailor the SF 1449. However, you don't have to use the form at all if you do a combined synopsis/solicitation.

Thank you for your comment.

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Just last week I drafted an update to our agency internal operating procedural guidance for issuing combined synopsis/solicitations. This is what I have so far. May update based on comments here or your sample. Already took Vern's recommendation on para (f)

Appendix A – Sample of Provision 52.212-1 Tailored for Simplified Acquisition Procedures
The following paragraphs of 52.212-1 should be tailored similar to as follows:

( a ) change all references to “offers” to “quotes” and remove requirement for quotes to be signed and dated;
( b )(9) delete;
( b )(11) delete;
© delete;
(d) change all references to “offers” to “quotes”;
(e) change all references to “offers” to “quotes” and “offerors” to “firms” or “quoters”;
(f) delete;
(g) change all references to “offers” to “quotes” and “offerors” to “firms” or “quoters” and remove references to conducting discussions or waiving informalities and minor irregularities;
(h) rewrite paragraph to simply state that the government reserves the right to issue multiple purchase orders for different line items when advantageous to the government and use the term “quotes” instead of “offers”; and
(l) delete.

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Noting reference 12.301(B )(1) and its further reference to 12.302 it would be important in my view to describe how the proposed tailored provision would be added by addenda which in part may go to the title of the proposed tailored provision. By example adding something to header – Addenda to FAR Clause 52.212-1 – and add a lead in paragraph that provides that “52.212-1 is replaced in its entirety by this addenda.” Minor I know and one would hope that users of the format would know the mechanics but you would be surprised!

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Whenever I use the commercial clauses for SAP, I ad the following text to the top of section C:

"This solicitation is a request for quote (RFQ). If appearing in this solicitation, the terms "RFP" shall mean "RFQ", the words "proposal" or "offer" shall mean "quote", the word "offeror" shall mean "quoter", and the word "contract" shall mean "purchase order"."

While this is not a total fix, it does help to dispel indices of the solicitation being in FAR Part 15.

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My only suggestion would be to mark paragraph ( c ) as reserved rather than re-numbering all the subsequent paragraphs.

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Here's my shot at a plain English version. 918 words versus 1,365.

INSTRUCTIONS TO QUOTERS

Submitting your quote. Submit your company’s quote in writing and on paper to the address specified in Block __ of this Request For Quotes (RFQ). You may submit more than one quote. If you do, we will evaluate each separately.

Submission deadline. We must receive your quote at the address specified in Block __ by the deadline specified in Block __. We will not consider any quote that we receive after the deadline unless we receive it before we issue a purchase order and considering it will not delay our purchase. In case of an emergency that delays our operations and makes submission or receipt of your quote impossible, we will extend the deadline by one working day.

Terms and content of your quote. Your quote must be based on the terms of this RFQ. We might reject any quote that is not based on these terms in every respect. Your quote must contain all of the information described below.

Small Business Status. In order to submit a quote, you must know whether your company is a small business. The small business size standard that applies to this purchase is stated in Block __ of the cover sheet of this RFQ, along with the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code on which it is based. Regardless of the information in Block __, the small business size standard is 500 employees if you are submitting your quote in your own name but intend to provide a product that you did not manufacture yourself.

Issuance of purchase order. Your quote should contain your best terms. The Contracting Officer may reject any or all quotes. After the evaluation of quotes, the Contracting Officer may negotiate final terms with one or more quoters of the Government’s choice before issuing a purchase order. The Contracting Officer will not negotiate with any quoters other than those of the Government’s choice and will not use the formal source selection procedures described in FAR Part 15.

The Contracting Officer may issue a purchase order to other than the quoter with the lowest price. We might issue multiple orders, purchasing various items or groups of items from different quoters. We might issue an order for less than the quantity on which your quote is based, at the quoted price, unless you tell us that you will not accept an order on that basis.

Information to be submitted. Put the following information on the first page of your quote:

1. the number of this RFQ;

2. your company name, address, DUNS number (see below) and telephone number;

3. your price and any discount terms;

4. acknowledgement of any amendments to this RFQ; and

5. a statement that you assent to all terms of this RFQ.

Beginning on the second page of your quote, provide the following information in the following order:

1. a detailed description of the product or service that you will provide, including any product or service literature that you wish to give us;

2. the terms of any express warranty;

3. your payment address;

4. references to current or former customers who will attest to the quality of your product or service in the within the past three years, including (i) customer name, (ii) customer address, (iii) contract or purchase order numbers, (iv) persons to contact, and (v) telephone numbers.

Product samples. If this RFQ requires that you submit product samples, you must deliver them to us at the location specified for our receipt on or before the deadline for submission of your quote. We will not pay for the samples, and we will return them to you only upon request and at your expense, unless they are destroyed during testing.

Availability of Government Documents. If the descriptions in this RFQ of the products or services we want to buy refer to any Government specification, standard, or commercial item description, you may obtain a copy of any such documents from the places listed in Federal Acquisition Regulation 52.212-1, paragraph (i).

System for Award Management (SAM). Unless exempted by the Contracting Officer, you must register in SAM before we will issue a purchase order to you. If you do not register by the date set by the Contracting Officer, the Contracting Officer might issue the order to a different quoter. Once registered, you must remain registered throughout performance until final payment. Go to https://www.acquisition.gov for information on SAM registration and annual confirmation.

DUNS Number (Data Universal Numbering System Number). [This applies to all quote if the solicitation requires that you be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM).] Place the annotation “DUNS” or “DUNS+4” next to your name and address on the first page of your quote followed by the DUNS or DUNS+4 number that identifies the quoter’s name and address.

If you do not have a DUNS number, contact Dun and Bradstreet to obtain one. If you are located within the United States, you may contact Dun and Bradstreet by calling 1-866-705-5711 or via the internet at http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform.

If you are located outside the United States, you must contact the local Dun and Bradstreet office for a DUNS number. Tell Dun and Bradstreet that you are a quoter for a Government contract when contacting the local Dun and Bradstreet office.

The DUNS+4 is the DUNS number plus a 4-character suffix that you may use at your discretion to establish additional SAM records for identifying alternative Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) accounts (see FAR Subpart 32.11) for your company.

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My only suggestion would be to mark paragraph ( c ) as reserved rather than re-numbering all the subsequent paragraphs.

Thanks, ji. I was back and forth on what to do with that. I can go back.

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And yet FAR 13 allows for "offers". FAR 13-106-1(a) says Contracting Officer's shall consider the guidance in 13.104 and the following before requesting quotations or offers and FAR 13.106-2 is titled "Evaluation of quotations or offers". To add to it, FAR 12 is used in conjuction with either FAR Par 13, 14 and 15. It makes it difficult to mentor the junior personnel, especially when using FAR Subpart 13.5 Test Program for Certain Commercial Items. Those waters can get real muddy.

Now if there was an Alternate 1 to the provision for use with FAR 13 SAP and the words "Quote or Quotations" were used instead of "Offer"..., now that might be something. But that's crazy talk, right?

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Now if there was an Alternate 1 to the provision for use with FAR 13 SAP and the words "Quote or Quotations" were used instead of "Offer"..., now that might be something. But that's crazy talk, right?

You don't need an alternate if you can tailor the provision.

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