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  1. Agree...the majority of "contacts" are blind sales e-mails that are not even personalized. If a vendor cannot bother to put more effort into it than merely pasting a bunch of KO email addresses in a bcc line, given the large number of vendors out there for most types of supplies and service, why waste time with ones that cannot manage to execute a marketing program with some thought?
  2. We dealt with this out here in Afghanistan when the AF-Pak border was closed for a long time a couple years back. Speaking from experience having dealt with this type of issue, I can tell you that Joel's comment is spot on. There is COFC/ASBCA case law dealing with this general issue. It is extremely dependent on the facts/circumstances. This forum is not the place to get a useful answer.
  3. One of my pet peeves is this very issue, people that do not understand the best value continuum concept. I work with one individual who has 20+ years experience in the USAF and even when I showed him the FAR 15 definition of best value, he still did not believe me that the concept included LPTA.
  4. I take it you have not read either FAR 8.405-3 or the GSA policies on the BPAs, in which it is explained that despite the common name, that a MAS BPA and a FAR 13 BPA have nothing to do with each other?
  5. The NCMA salary survey is a great start. In general, you will find a considerable amount of salary variation on the industry side. Don't forget to consider non-cash compensation when looking at your options (e.g. insurance, leave, retirement, office perks, bonus scheme, opportunity for growth, etc). When I was contemplating a move from gov to industry a few years ago (I was a mid-grade GS-13 at the time with 7 years of experience), I found that I would have given up both pay and the relative stability of the Government, so to me it was not worth it.
  6. Having worked for both DoD agencies and civilian agencies, one thing I can tell you that runs throughout is that 1102s like to complain about their current and/or previous employers. If all the complaints I have heard were true, then it would be pretty miserable working anywhere in the job series. All places have their pluses and minuses, so I really wouldn't worry too much about anecdotal complaints about any instant agency. In terms of the job announcement, often times language is canned and the announcement may not truly reflect the position. In terms of DAWIA/FAC-C, a DAWIA certification should be honored by a civilian agency. However, the reverse will not necessarily be the case, as DAWIA has more specific requirements than FAC-C. In general, it sounds like you have some self-confidence issues to work on. If you walk into an interview thinking that you will "probably find a way to screw up," then you have already sabotaged your chances as a good interviewer will be able to pick up on your lack self-perceived inability to do the job.
  7. That's a great question! I can't defend the language. If I had to guess, I would say it was crafted solely to address the fair/reasonable aspect of pricing with a potential 52.217-8 extension, but that admittedly does not necessarily address the issue at the heart of the GAO case.
  8. Whether or not this would pass muster in court, I don't know, but my command has Contracting Officers add the language below to the award decision document. It basically states that we consider the -8 evaluated, without actually doing any evaluation: The solicitation and subsequent award for this acquisition contains the clause at FAR 52.217-8, Option to Extend Services. This option to extend the contract term was evaluated as part of the initial evaluation, so that any resultant exercise of this option is within scope of the pending contract. The option provision may be exercised more than once, but the total extension of performance hereunder shall not exceed six (6) months. I determine that I have evaluated FAR 52.217-8 and if conditions warrant the exercise of this option, the price(s) for the continued performance under this clause shall be at the same price(s) as the prior performance period. Based on my evaluation, I hereby determine that the price for this option, if exercised, is fair and reasonable and in the best interest of the Government.
  9. Here are some "model" awards from the Office of Naval Research. I can't speak to the last time these were updated. http://www.onr.navy.mil/en/Contracts-Grants/submit-proposal/contracts-proposal/contract-model-awards.aspx
  10. Regarding NSNs, some are managed by DLA and some are managed by GSA. Additionally, AbilityOne is the sole authorized source for certain NSNs, but I think the specs for such NSNs still belong to the cognizant Governement agency.
  11. Don, the GSA Global Supply Program is the GSA wholesale supply source. They have a decent FAQ about it on http://www.gsa.gov/portal/content/103940#12. You can search online at https://www.gsaglobalsupply.gsa.gov/advantage/main/home.do As far as I know, there is no single database for the three wholesale programs (GSA, DLA, VA). However, the three sources are mutually exclusive in that broad commodity areas have been divied up amongst the three. I cannot speak for DLA or VA, but I can tell you that for GSA, if the national stock number (NSN) is on the procurement list, you can still safely buy it from Global Supply because they will be sourcing it from AbilityOne.
  12. "...plus with software development the requirement is very fluid in terms of week to week needs and changes" Scope creep on a software development project? I am shocked! I think you might want to do some more in depth market research on software development. Also, why do you not want the project to be procured as a commercial item?
  13. I am sorry that you are in that situation. In a prior position, my exclusive responsibility was being CO for two on-site support service contracts in a relatively small field office of a MAJOR civilian agency. The contractor component made up more than half of all the personnel in the office and there was a long tradition of the Government trying to interefere with the compensation, promotion, hiring, etc. of contractor staff. What was unfortunate in this case was that it was director-level personnel (including the HCA) that were actually the ones pressuring the contractor. That HCA was investigated by the OIG and, last I heard, in the midst of being terminated. The agency was also almost party to a joint-liability EEO lawsuit resulting from inappropriate treatment of one contractor employee from a couple of years before. I think in this situation just not even responding to the request might be one of the most prudent responses.
  14. Section 822 of the FY12 NDAA contained the following language regarding the micropurchase threshold: This section would allow the Secretary of Defense to apply a simplified acquisition threshold of $1.0 million and micro-purchase threshold of $25,000 for contracting activities supporting contingency operations in the Republic of Iraq or the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, regardless of the location of the contracting activity. FAR 13.201(g)(1)(i) establishes a MP threshold, for contingency operations, of $15,000 in the case of any contract to be awarded and performed, or purchase to be made, inside the United States and 13.201(g)(1)(ii) establishes a MP threshold of $30,000 in the case of any contract to be awarded and performed, or purchase to be made, outside the United States. I work in a DoD contracting office located in Afghanistan. The organization has interpreted the NDAA to mean that the MP threshold for any purchase related to contingency operations in Iraq or Afghanistan to now be $25,000, even when the contract is awarded OCONUS. However, to me the intent seems to be to authorize a higher threshold for contracting offices located CONUS that are issuing contracts in support of the operations in Iraq/Afghanistan. Does anyone have any insight into the background of this or which interpretation is correct?
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