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caramel92

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  1. Interesting. In about 10 years, it has only happened here about 3 times (according to those who have been here that long). So it's not nearly as common here as Vern's DoD experience suggests it is elsewhere. That being said, if it is something that is necessary for the good of the programs we are trying to effect, I'm all for it, but at what point do they open the books? We do not negotiate directly with the sub, but how can we effectively negotiate with a prime contractor if the prime does not know what is in the sub's proposal? It would seem that in order to negotiate effectively, much less
  2. I'm the government, so I don't necessarily 'want' anything either way, from that perspective. However, I think it's asinine for a subcontractor to expect to work side by side with a prime (including on invoices!) without disclosing cost/pricing/business-proposal-related information. But what do I know? I'd like to not have to give them this option (and therefore not have to accommodate this behavior in our system, having to do so would complicate it immensely) but wanted to see if anyone knew of a rule that I couldn't find that specifically requires us to allow this practice.
  3. Working in R&D contracting, we sometimes encounter a situation where a subcontractor does not want to submit their business proposal through the prime, for proprietary reasons. Are we obligated to accommodate this, or are we able to require the subcontractor to submit their business proposal through the prime? We are developing a system to receive proposals electronically (no more boxes of paper copies all over people's offices) and I am trying to determine if this is an option the subcontractor is entitled to (and therefore if we have to build the system to accommodate this option). I can
  4. Along similar lines, do I have the ability to approve an invoice for over my warrant amount? I know an invoice isn't an obligation, but I'm at HHS, and our warrant reads "The award and administration of contracts up to $10million, executed in accordance with all requirements of Federal law, executive order, blah blah" Looking at this, it says that I also can't administer a contract over my warrant level. Meaning that even if the mod level is under my warrant level, if the total contract value is over it, I can't so much as issue an administrative mod on the contract. Is this correct?
  5. We have a CR contract awarded in 2012 to a not-for-profit small business organization for R&D. Now, in one of the option years, the contractor is claiming that they can do a portion of the work for less if they hire a subcontractor to do that portion of the work. They are trying to charge the government for the audit of a potential subcontractor to do this work. The government did not 'request' or 'require' that the subcontractor be used--the contractor proposed it on their own. I can't find anywhere that addresses this directly (or indirectly on the facts presented--existing contract, sub
  6. Yes, the contractor probably should have known, or at least asked. But because it's a CR contract for R&D, the 'funded scope' is rather broadly defined. So while I normally would lay this at the contractor's feet on a 'should have known' basis, in this instance I think it is questionable at best. Additionally, the COR is notorious for doing this, despite having been told repeatedly not to, so it would be nice to have something that gave the limitations on the COR's authority teeth-otherwise why bother? (unfortunately removing the COR is a non-starter, we've tried).
  7. Right...but there is no way for either the contractor (if the gov't doesn't pay) or the gov't to hold the COR financially accountable for his actions? (or, since we are talking about the government, accountable at all)?
  8. In the event of an unauthorized commitment where the COR directed the contractor to perform the work not called for/funded by the contract (CR), where the CO doesn't feel that the commitment meets the requirements for ratification set forth in FAR 1.602©(3) and refuses to ratify, what are the options for the government and contractor? Specifically, the contractor can submit a claim or sue the government, but can the contractor take action against the COR specifically? Can the government take action against the COR, holding them liable for the amount of the unauthorized commitment? Are there
  9. Along these lines. Are we required to have the on/off ramp provisions in the solicitation/contract? Is there anything that prevents us from, for example, opening up the competition in an effort to add to the pool of contractors without the onramp clause?
  10. Side note: this is not the first issue we have had with A-21. Does anyone know of an email address or website that we can go to to ask questions like this? Always better to get the guidance from the people who wrote the policy (in theory, anyway). The contact numbers and snail-mail address seem useless in terms of getting a question answered...
  11. I have a R&D, CR contract with an educational institution. Therefore, it is subject to OMB Circular A-21. A-21 limits to $25,000 the amount of subcontracts that the educational institution can charge F&A costs on. The contractor is using other companies to perform non-commercial work under this contract--sample testing, biological supplies and testing, that kind of thing. My office has taken the position that this is a subcontract, and therefore subject to the $25,000 limitation imposed by A-21. The institution is asserting this to be a 'vendor agreement' (or supplier contract), as the
  12. An alternative interpretation, in which there is no conflict, is that the FAR language deals with the establishment of the indirect cost rates FOR the educational institutions and the OMB circular details their applicability within the contract itself. However, when asked, Wifcon, OGC and ASI all agree that there is a conflict. Is there any merit to this interpretation?
  13. Given a conflict between the FAR and OMB Circular A-21, which one controls? Both are codified in the CFR. FAR 42.705-3(b.)(6) states that “predetermined indirect cost rates shall be applicable for a period of not more than four years. The agency shall obtain the contractor’s proposal for new predetermined rates sufficiently in advance so that the new rates, based on current data, may be promptly negotiated near the beginning of the new fiscal year or other period agreed to by the parties”. However, OMB Circular A-21(G)(7) states that “Federal agencies shall use the negotiated rates for F&A
  14. Are you suggesting we use appropriated funds to teach monkeys to use condoms?
  15. "But why is the contractor crediting the government only for the profit? It should credit the government for the entire proceeds of the sale." I'm sorry, there I mispoke. As the contractor was getting paid (cost reimbursement) for the care of the monkey, all proceeds would be profit to the contractor.
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