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bayana

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  1. Thank you, Retreadfed and Joel. According to your explanation and FAR 31 and FAR 52.215-2, I understand Cost Principle shall be applied to fixed-price contracts other than FFP and FPEPA. However, I wonder why prohibition of the use of fixed-price contract type other than FFP and FPEPA for commercial items is as strict as prohibition of CR for commercial item, while less uncertainties exists in fixed-price contracts and less financial risk is borne by the Government for fixed-price. I wish fixed-price with redetermination contracts could be allowed for commercial services when some conditions are met like T&M/LH use for commercial items. Maybe I think in this way because of my lack of knowledge on cost principles. I need to be educated.
  2. I love this topic. I hope FAR will be revised someday to add another fixed price contract type that is described in the second example of Vern?s post #4. Maybe it could be 16.208 Fixed-unit-price contracts with adjustable quantity. I use this type of contract for both supplies and services (for service whose payment is paid not for hours worked but for quantity of output, e.g., insurance verification service that is set up with a unit price per insurance policy, translation service with unit price per completed page, etc. Although I can write those contracts as fixed-price in a way to allow adjustment of the quantity, I have a problem with some reporting that requires us to select the exact type of contract from fixed price contracts. For example, when completing FPDS-NG, we need to select one from FFP; Fixed price award fee; Fixed price incentive; Fixed price level of effort; Fixed price redetermination; Fixed price with economic price adjustment. Therefore, I need to report the contract as FFP, while it is not exactly FFP. By the way, FAR 16.201 states, ?The Contracting Officer shall use firm-fixed-price or sixed-price with economic price adjustment contracts when acquiring commercial items.? Why aren?t fixed price contracts other than 16.202 and 16.203 suitable for commercial items?
  3. My contracting team often uses the expression ?meets or exceeds? in a solicitation when using the Lowest Price Technically Acceptable (LPTA) source selection process in accordance with guidelines provided under FAR 15.101-2((1). ? ?.. Solicitations shall specify that award will be made on the basis of the lowest evaluated price of proposals meeting or exceeding the acceptability standards for non-cost factors?.? This gives Offerors a clear idea that all technical quotes/proposals that meet or exceed the requirement will be considered technically acceptable equally and there will be no technical ranking.
  4. Vern, your conclusion makes sense. Thank you so much for your response and information. I agree that both GSA blog and MAS Desk Reference are worth reading. I have another question regarding MAS Desk Preference (specifically regarding page 15, the first paragraph talking about the EEO clearance), but that is irrelevant to this thread topic, so I will refrain from adding the question here.
  5. The following question has nothing to do with the Government shut down. I believe it is a common practice that when we issue a Request for Quotation (RFQ) for a proposed delivery/task order to be issued against a GSA schedule contract, it is not needed to incorporate clauses that are already included at the GSA Schedule contract level. Are there any rules that prohibit us from incorporating an updated version of the clause that is already in the contract level? For example, when schedule contracts contain FAR 52.212-4 (MAR 2009), can we incorporate FAR 52.212-4 (JUN 2010) at the delivery/task order level?
  6. I just realized I may have misinterpreted FAR 52.215-1(f)(5) for all years until I read this thread. ? The Government reserves the right to make an award on any item for a quantity less than the quantity offered, at the unit cost or prices offered, unless the offeror specifies otherwise in the proposal.? In my opinion, any item means ?any item accepted by the Government? and for the item to be accepted, at least one quantity shall be awarded on that item. A quantity less than the quantity offered means ?a quantity less than the quantity the successful Offeror offered,? and does not mean a quantity less than the quantity Government required in the solicitation. Let?s say the solicitation required 800 (QTY) of flashlights and the basis for award is LPTA. Two proposals were received, and both are determined technically acceptable equally. Offeror A proposed a unit price of $10.00 for the quantity of 800, which makes the total proposed price of $8,000.00. Offeror B proposed a unit price of $9.50 for the quantity of 1,000, which makes the total proposed price of $9,500.00. However, Offeror B failed to specify in its proposal that this unit price is applicable only when the quantity of 1,000 was purchased by the Government, implying it is offering a discount for a larger quantity and the unit price would be higher if the exact quantity of 800 would be purchased by the Government. In this case, the Government has the right to purchase only the quantity of 800 from Offeror B at the unit price of $9.50 that is the offered unit price in its proposal, and therefore, the awarded price will be $9.50 X 800 =$7,600.00. Offeror B?s proposal is determined to be the best value. If there are option periods included in the solicitation, the same logic shall apply. Again, in my opinion (and I could be wrong), FAR 52.215-1(f) discusses the Government?s right to decide the quantity to be purchased on a particular item(s), and does not discuss the right to decide whether to accept a particular item(s) (all items or less items).
  7. If the new Army Contracting Command testing procedures completely mirrors the Air Force Mandatory Procedures (MP) 5301.603 dated Apr 2010, it should require a citation. Per MP 5301.603, 3.3.7., "A correct answer and citation of a valid reference, to the paragraph level (e.g. FAR 15.403-1(), as applicable, indicating where the candidate located the answer to each question must be provided to earn two points......." Therefore, the candidate is given an opportunity to provide rationale to support the answer, which is good. However, I still think essay questions should be included in the exam so that the candidate can demonstrate her/his thought process, logic, documentation skills, and even creativity. As to documentation skills, when I started my very first 1102 job, my CO told me documentation is essential to contracting and I still religiously believe in that. If a sound business decision is orally stated with strong supporting information, but if it is not documented in file, the job is half-done. Speech skills are as necessary as writing skills, but any oral communications that resulted in important decisions shall be followed up by detailed documentation. You need to document: to justify your business judgment; to protect yourself and your agency by storing evidence; and to leave the history of the contract in the file for those who inherit the contract from you.
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