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Everything posted by ji20874

  1. UCA - Required Contract Clauses

    The order (DD Form 1155) that references the BOA should incorporate by reference the provisions of the BOA -- see FAR 16.703(d)(2)(ii). I'm just wondering... Is there really a BOA? Is this a DPAS rated order that the contractor must accept?
  2. UCA - Required Contract Clauses

    It seems you received an order under a BOA. There are no clauses to be "read into the UCA." Any clauses that apply should already be in the order itself or in the BOA. Regarding the pricing of the work, you will want to read FAR 16.703(d)(3).
  3. The Problem of Proposal-Based Competition

    Junius, Another way to say it: contracting officers are no longer expected to be professionals that delivery the best possible business solutions to help accomplish an agency's mission -- rather, they are expected to be clerks. "Management and lawyers" want a procurement program that spends money and generates little risk, while caring little or nothing about the best possible business solutions to help accomplish an agency's mission.
  4. Court Order and the FAR

    If a court orders a psych exam, wouldn't the agency have some discretion about how to carry it out? For example, if DOJ was the target of the order, could it use one of it employees to do the exam? or use a VA employee? But if the agency elects to use a contractor, it would be very easy -- a simple purchase order, sole-source or competitive as needed, using the agency's normal procurement authority/processes and appropriated funds. It might get more problematic if a court orders an agency to do something that goes beyond the agency's authorization and appropriations acts, but that isn't the case here.
  5. Tomahawk, So everything is clear? And there is no problem? That's good!
  6. Tomahawk, I recommend you ask the contracting officer for clarification on which parts of the work are FFP and which parts of the work are T&M. Hopefully, the answer will be on a CLIN basis, where certain CLINs are wholly FFP and other CLINs are wholly T&M -- that is generally easier than having blended CLINs. A prospective offeror never has much time before proposals are due, so I suggest you hurry.
  7. Vern makes a good point -- I think my most professionally rewarding and learning years were spent as a contracting officer in program offices working directly with program managers. When arguments arose about my appraisal, I was always in favor of the program manager doing the writing/signing rather than the contracts chief.
  8. You should get rid of that expectation. A business owner can read the FAR as well as a contracting officer, or can hire the expertise to effectively participate in the government market. I think "trust but verify" can apply here. Yes, contracting officers will sometimes release solicitations with poorly-written CLIN schedules and so forth. In those situations, I hope prospective offerors will share recommendations for improving the approach. If they do, the resulting contract might be better for both parties. Where prospective offerors don't share recommendations, or the contracting officer doesn't accept them, prospective offerors have to make a business decision: continue to play or walk away. But this is true for all business arrangements everywhere, not just those with the government. In the commercial market, it is very common for buyers to walk in and explain what they're looking for, and for sellers to advise them that they (the buyers) really don't want that. Maybe the sellers are effective in changing the minds of the buyers, or maybe not. I tend to think sellers (or prospective Government contractors) should be experts in offering and packaging their services, and specifying payment terms -- and that is what a CLIN structure is, after all -- so yes, I think prospective contractors can be helpful to contracting officers in crafting CLIN structures that fit their market sectors.
  9. If you want to know why the prime contractor is doing what it is doing, you must ask the prime contractor. There is no mandatory connection or correlation between the contract type negotiated between the Government and the prime contractor and the contract type negotiated between the prime contractor and any subcontractor.
  10. REA, I most earnestly hope that the CLIN structure IS NOT set up like I asked -- but based on the original posting and the comments, I am wondering. I hope the answer is NO, because indeed that would be very poor tradecraft -- but I have seen a lot of poor tradecraft regarding T&M lately.
  11. So, maybe the solicitation CLIN structure is notionally something like this? 0001, Services, 2080 HR, unit price $100, amount $1,200 (FFP) 0002, Materials, reimbursable at cost (T&M, M only)
  12. I recommend you ask the contracting officer for clarification on which parts of the work are FFP and which parts of the work are T&M. Hopefully, the answer will be on a CLIN basis, where certain CLINs are wholly FFP and other CLINs are wholly T&M -- that is generally easier than having blended CLINs. A prospective offeror never has much time before proposals are due, so I suggest you hurry.
  13. GSA CTAs

    Then there is no need for that schedule contractor to enter into a CTA.
  14. Does the contract specify the working hours? Will the change be a verbal agreement, or will it be an official contract modification on a SF-30? If the latter, what authority will be cited in block 13?
  15. See FAR 15.404-1(a), and also (a)(1). Note the emphasis on "final agreed-to price" and "final price" being fair and reasonable. Is the contractor's proposed price fair and reasonable? There is nothing wrong per se with an overhead rate of 14.95%. I assume you're getting certified cost and pricing data (sole source over the threshold), so you can review or challenge or audit or negotiate any part of it. There is nothing wrong per se with profit on subcontracted work. If you don't use a structured approach to analyze profit, you'll still want to consider the factors listed in FAR 15.404-4(d)(1)(i) through ((vi) in your analyzing profit.
  16. There are a lot of rabbit holes in our work. :-) Speaking of rabbit holes, and since we don't know if this is a construction acquisition, let me add that the fill-in to the clause at FAR 52.236-1, Performance of Work by the Contractor, might prohibit a large business (or any other subcontractor) from doing 99% of the work.
  17. This is true insofar as we're talking about a contract (or purchase order) for services (or construction). And as best as I can tell from the original posting, we are probably talking about a contract for services (or construction). But I wouldn't want anyone to think that this same principle applies to a contract (or purchase order) for supplies. In a contract for supplies that is a total small business set-aside, even a contract below the simplified acquisition threshold, the contract will include the clause at FAR 52.219-6, Notice of Total Small Business Set-Aside. For a contract for supplies, paragraph (d) of that clause requires the contractor to furnish "only end items manufactured or produced by small business concerns in the United States or its outlying areas" except that if the total contract amount does not exceed $25,000, the contractor may furnish "the product of any domestic firm." The original poster did say that 52.219-6 was included in his or her solicitation. He or she did not clearly say that the acquisition was for services (or construction), although I assume it is because "a large business will do 99% of the work."
  18. LPTA Question

    REA, Here's how it works -- I don't like it; I'm just explaining it. An offeror with an approach we like gets a pass, an offeror with an approach we don't like gets a fail. I'm okay with pass/fail in LPTA if we really have some technical measures to assess -- and I'm okay sometimes with "approach" in LPTA -- but sometimes, all I see is technical approach, management approach, and/or staffing approach -- in such a case, I generally prefer tradeoff.
  19. Batman, Please help me understand. I can't make sense of this: versus: Does the -8 option expire in July, or did it already expire in January? And was the -8 option exercised for the parent IDIQ contract, or was it exercised on one/some/all task order(s)? If the -8 option was exercised for the parent IDIQ contract, what did the -8 option purchase, inasamuch as a parent IDIQ contract does not purchase any services?
  20. Deaner, It is good to read the clause, isn't it? The 52.237-3 clause need not be used only in the last 90 days of the incumbent contract -- it can also be used on the first 90 days of the successor contract.
  21. I'm with Vern -- the Continuity of Services clause presumes the successor contract has been awarded -- the incumbent contractor is not responsible for full performance, but only for phase-in/phase-out services in support of the successor contractor. And I'm with Don -- if the clause is in the parent contract, then it can apply to any of the task orders. If you still need full performance, don't use the 52.237-3 clause. Write a JEFO or other appropriate sole source justification if you need to and extend the period of performance of the order. Save the 52.237-3 clause for after award of the successor contract.
  22. I suppose this is a competitive acquisition, because you wrote "One offeror submitted..." and "tradeoff". You may open discussions with all offerors in the competitive range. Or, if you want to award without discussions, you award at the proposed price (estimated cost + fee = price). If the contractor gives you a notice of overrun during contract performance, you exercise one or more of the Government's flexibilities as listed in the clause at FAR 52.232-20 or -22, and you record the contractor's MARGINAL or UNSATISFACTORY performance under the cost control element in CPARS. If you do add additional funds to cover the overrun on estimated cost, you do not increase the fee. You may have other remedies available to you, depending on whether this is a CPFF or CFAF contract. At this point, you do not know that the offeror will overrun -- you acknowledge a possibility, but you don't know. It would be stupid to award on the probable cost calculated by the Government, so don't even think about it. Remember, if you think this is really a huge problem, you can open discussions with all offerors in the competitive range.
  23. The micro-purchase threshold is irrelevant to your situation. You made a contract or other award where you did a written price analysis. Now, you are modifying that award for an amount less than $3,500. However, you are not making a micro-purchase. Since you are not making a micro-purchase, you are not covered by FAR Subpart 13.2. You might be thinking that something in FAR Subpart 13.2 exempts you from price analysis. Well, you're not covered because you're a contractor, but still, the text in FAR Subpart 13.2 about not always having to verify price reasonableness doesn't apply because you aren't making a micro-purchase.
  24. GAO: Late Is Late–Even If Agency Server Malfunctions

    An offeror intending to submit a proposal by e-mail really, really, really should make its submission by “5:00 p.m. one working day prior to the date specified for receipt of offers." An offeror who fails to do so, and whose proposal is late, should protest to the Court of Federal Claims instead of to the GAO. I'm with the GAO on this matter. Desparado, I've done a number of bid openings but I've never had that pressing situation -- I have had situations where a bidder arrived late and he knew he was late, so there was no complaint. At a bid opening, I always clearly announce when the time set for bid opening has arrived, as you probably do, too. In training others to do bid openings, I remind them that they must have the professional backbone to declare the time and then to stand by their announcement. I tend to discern that many of our younger colleagues do not have sufficient backbone to do it.
  25. Read this. Read it NOW!

    Pepe, I'm sympathetic to your call to action. But how many of our contracting officers can tell the difference? How many of their supervisors can tell the difference? How many of their procurement analysts can tell the difference? How many of their attorneys can tell the difference? I wish I could say "most" or even "many" or each category. I can't. Here is a few things off the top of my head from the "blue" or "lore" category-- · A determination to include or exercise an option must be in a D&F (Determinations and Findings) format. · Q&As for a solicitation must be provided by solicitation amendment. · Any modification over 20% (or any other fill-in the-blank figure) is automatically out-of-scope. · A J&A (or other sole source documentation) is needed before issuing orders that cumulatively go above the estimated quantity (or price) in a requirements contract. · A task/delivery order purchasing the contract minimum must be awarded simultaneous with (or immediately after) the award of any IDIQ contract. · A determination of responsibility is required to support an option exercise or issuance of a task/delivery order. · A BPA must include a ceiling or maximum amount for the BPA, and a J&A (or other sole source documentation) is required before issuing orders that cumulatively go above that amount. · A contractor release of claims is required before closing out every contract, purchase order, or task/delivery order. · A contract closeout must be done with a bilateral contract modification. · A notice (solicitation) for a fair opportunity consideration must state whether all non-price factors, when combined, are significantly more important than, approximately equal to, or significantly less important than price. Let me stop there -- lunch is over and I need to get back to work. By the way, every single one of the above statements is FALSE but they are believed to be true by some of our associates -- that's why they're in the "blue" or "lore" category. I'm reminded that in matters of religion, one sincere adherent's folklore is another sincere adherent's doctrine. Some people reading my list of folklore might argue with me and insist that something on the list is doctrine. I hope no one tries to burn me at the stake -- but if I do err, maybe someone will teach me with chapter and verse from the FAR or other FAR-level document (not from an agency guide or office SOP). I'm open to learning.