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Matthew Fleharty

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Everything posted by Matthew Fleharty

  1. Degrees and experience

    This is a Contract Award Process question how exactly?
  2. PBP Milestone - Mulitiple Payments

    I find it interesting (and antiquated) that there is this separation between any type of contract financing and the word "incentive." Since cash flow is a vital part of a company's return on investment and cash flow is impacted by financing arrangements the two seem inseparable (to me). This incongruity is probably what drove policies like we saw here with PBPs.
  3. Problem of the Day

    I'm curious to hear the story behind why this became the Problem of the Day. Also, will this be a recurring thing?
  4. PBP Milestone - Mulitiple Payments

    PBPs don't serve as a cap that a contractor bills against gradually as they incur costs. They're binary - when the contractor completes the event, they receive payment equal to the amount in the payment schedule for that milestone; until then, they don't. See paragraph (a) of the clause you reference 252.232-7012 (emphasis added below): Assuming the following clause is also in your contract, see FAR 52.232-32( c )(1) (emphasis added below):
  5. PBP Milestone - Mulitiple Payments

    I don't think the OP is the government's contracting officer. See the following (emphasis added):
  6. PBP Milestone - Mulitiple Payments

    Stating "the contractor front loaded their costs" is a misnomer - you probably meant to say "the contractor front loaded their payments" (because if the contractor front loaded their costs, they likely wouldn't be trying to invoice for payments in excess of costs incurred). As such, it may be worth noting that the contractor does not unilaterally determine the PBP schedule - those milestones and their amounts are agreed to by the contractor and the government's contracting officer.
  7. PBP Milestone - Mulitiple Payments

    What if the contract was awarded prior to the passage of the 2017 NDAA? In case this turns into a law vs. regulation discussion, here's a previous topic on that issue:
  8. To each their own I suppose, best of luck to you charles.
  9. So instead of asking five questions in your original post and creating a lot of noise, why not simply ask: What was your original question? I counted five...is it the one that came first, last,...? EDIT: Clearly my use of the word "silly" got to you which wasn't my intent so my apologies for that. I'd edit it out of my original post, but then that would simply make your response look, well "silly"
  10. What are you even trying to ask? Your previous sentence cites the two ways an offeror is notified of their lack of success: either by a required notice or by requesting notification. Assuming an prospective contractor wants to know whether she was unsuccessful, why wouldn't the contractor simply "request award status?" The premise of your line of questioning is silly.
  11. "Legitimate Need"

    This is not uncommon (emphasis added below): Take a moment (or two) and think...assuming single points of failure are bad, why wouldn't an agency be permitted or have an interest in eliminating/reducing them?
  12. "Legitimate Need"

    No one is going to be able to provide you adequate advice on whether or not FAR 6.302-3 applies without significantly more information/facts and your colleague’s rationale/argument. Why does an exception to competition that is in statute raise all kinds of flags for you? It isn’t like your colleague made this exception up. Just because you haven’t seen or done it before doesn’t make it wrong...
  13. Price Proposals for A-E IDIQ Contracts

    I don’t see why he would have as that applies to “orders placed under multi-agency contracts” (emphasis added below) Please re-read the first two sentences of the OP’s post and explain why you think we’re dealing with multi-agency contracts.
  14. FEMA Contracting Failure

    Just for fun, I looked up Tribute Contracting (DUNS: 079098386) in the System for Award Management and there was/is an exclusion covering the period of 08 Jan 2016 through 07 Jan 2019; however, the additional comments state the exclusion is effective within Government Printing Office (GPO) only. I don't know about others, but a reasonable Contracting Officer should do more due diligence when they see an active exclusion regardless of the exclusion's inapplicability to one's agency. Mission impossible or not, that is common sense.
  15. FEMA Contracting Failure

    In case everyone is avoiding the "news" after the Truth Decay discussion, I just wanted to share some recent reports where contracting is currently in the crosshairs: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/06/us/fema-contract-puerto-rico.html https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/06/us/puerto-rico-hurricane-maria-meals/index.html https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-puertorico-meals/fema-contractor-did-not-deliver-millions-of-puerto-rico-meals-lawmakers-idUSKBN1FQ2OP
  16. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    For any reviews and/or clearances, assign any necessary member(s) from the clearance/review official's staff(s) to the source selection team from the beginning to provide concurrent advice and guidance. Completion of a review or receipt of business/contract clearance would, ideally, become a one day event where the clearance/review official receives a short, joint memo or brief from the assigned staff member(s) and the Contracting Officer that states the acquisition is good to go or details any remaining areas of disagreement for the official to adjudicate. The intent is to avoid the weeks or months long process of trading paperwork between the field and the staff.
  17. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    Read the rules (which I now just broke...sort of):
  18. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    Idea: Use as few evaluation factors as possible. Hypothesis: More evaluation factors likely results in more lengthy and/or complex proposals and the subsequent evaluation of those proposals.
  19. I'm currently reading "The Golden Passport" by Duff McDonald which is a full fledged critique of Harvard Business School (HBS) and some of the thoughts that have come out of there, like the notion that shareholder value reigns supreme (I'm a regular reader of HBR so I'm trying to learn where my "blind spots" might be). It's a lengthy read, but a worthy one which argues fervently against commonly accepted material that permeates MBA programs (including yours apparently) since HBS is a "thought" leader when it comes to business schools. If you get your hands on it but don't want to read through all 600+ pages, Chapter 42 "The Murder of Managerialism" focuses on Michael Jensen [one of, if not the most prominent promoters of the premise] and shareholder value. Here's an excerpt: And this one seems to fit your MBA experience:
  20. Truth Decay

    To further illustrate the timeliness of this topic, I reached the end of my Jan/Feb HBR magazine and stumbled upon the following article: https://hbr.org/2018/01/the-triumph-of-spin-over-substance It includes a few reading recommendations that those interested in this topic may enjoy.
  21. Truth Decay

    As always, I appreciate the reading recommendation. In response to your line of questioning, I thought (wrongly) that the preceding paragraph would provide enough context for the use of an adage. What I meant by "take" was not outright trust or belief, but rather where I decide to use my finite time to read the news (i.e. I'll read news reported by NYTimes, WSJ, Washington Post over content on 4chan, Infowars, etc.). An aside: this is may be one of those cases where the use of the "her" pronoun does gender-inclusive writing a disservice. I don't think this is a fair characterization of my comments - nowhere in this thread have I stated to believe first and verify later or that I or anyone should accept deception because we'll all feel better when an author of a false report is disciplined. If you think I'm the type of person who jumps to conclusions or makes hasty generalizations, well I'm at least curious what gave you that impression. Generally, I think I'm a thoughtful consumer of information who reads multiple sources to see if they separately corroborate the information (i.e. don't just report the other outlet's information) before formulating a position or reaching a conclusion (though I am human so I'll admit that sometimes my relative youth or biases do get the best of me). I understand, and don't dispute, that traditional news outlets are businesses which carry a whole host of incentivizes that may cause them to sensationalize the news or move on to the next news cycle all too quickly (or too slowly in the case of CNN's MH370 coverage); however, alternative/independent news sources are surely not exempt from their own set of incentives (monetary or otherwise) and I think they present a whole new host of problems relating to transparency and credibility (which I'm not going to rehash). As for the wait and see approach you propose, while generally prudent, I think it can be a bystander luxury. By that I mean, the very nature of "see what develops" requires further fact finding. In some cases, information, the discovery of further facts, and/or a decision is time sensitive and does not permit waiting to see. In other cases, if that further fact finding requires more or stronger resources (e.g. a subpoena) waiting to see may not compel further fact finding because everyone will scurry off to the next news cycle or distraction and the previous topic will be forgotten. So sure, when one can, gather more information or wait for it to develop; however, a time may come where one is asked to use incomplete or competing information to make a decision and take a position. Then what?
  22. Truth Decay

    I suppose that's one way of looking at news that relies on anonymous sources, but imagine if there was a collective shrug in response to the reports on Watergate, the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal, or the U.S.'s use of secret detention facilities in Europe (just to name a few impactful reports that relied on anonymous sources). I fully understand that reporting, particularly when it relies on anonymous sources, is not infallible and should be subject to a healthy dose of skepticism, but there are better reactions to those reports than outright distrust from some or, as you stated, a shrug and no action (I, for one, doubt that's actually your reaction...my guess is you try to see if other outlets are reporting or corroborating the news). For anyone who may merely distrust or discount news that relies on anonymous sources, consider the following two articles as a primer (or any other guide to anonymous sources) to help you make an informed assessment of the information instead: I think most of us here would agree that, more broadly speaking, the reporting and exchange of information is imperfect (anyone who can recall playing the telephone game in elementary school understands that from a young age). While the following provides an impactful of example where the media got it wrong... ...regardless of whether this is "sweetening the well" or something else, I do think it begins to highlight a key difference between the traditional media and alternative/independent media: that a degree of transparency and accountability can and does exist. Traditional media promulgates standards and ethics for their reporting (http://asne.org/resources-ethics) and while that does not make their reporting above reproach, it does establish a set of expectations for accountability that warrants retrospectives like the one Vern posted here or suspensions and firings of individuals who violate those standards and misreport. Whether the degree of accountability regarding an incident is adequate is debatable - I'll stipulate that sometimes it is, sometimes it isn't - but its prevalence in one space compared to the other is not. Let's consider conversely, for example, whether or not the anonymous individual(s) who "reported" "pizzagate" will ever publish a retrospective of any kind? I seriously doubt it, particularly because there is no standard for accountability nor anyone to hold accountable. For those distrustful of traditional media in favor of alterative/independent media, it's puzzling when one considers how many "reporters" in the alternative/independent media operate under a shroud of complete anonymity. If they "publish" a false "report," reestablishing one's credibility is as simple as creating a new handle (or user name) for filing the next "report" (or, in some cases, conveniently "pivoting" to the "I'm a performance artist merely playing a character" defense). Writers for traditional media have to, at a minimum, put their name/credibility on the line (and their outlet's as well) based on a set of publicly available expectations. So when one does misreport (either accidently or purposefully), a reader can approach any future reports with whatever skepticism may be warranted based on previous events. It's no wonder Stephen Glass will never get rehired at a traditional media company as a journalist due to public knowledge of his gross fabrications (though I suppose he could easily start reporting again via 4chan...). In short, I'll take the devils I know over the devils I don't/can't know any day of the week (and twice on Sundays because of the crossword puzzles ) P.S. While I quote Vern's comments in the later half of this post, the comments that followed are not intended to imply that Vern defended or promoted alternative/independent media - I'm merely using them as a springboard to juxtapose the level of accountability between traditional media and alternative/independent media.
  23. Truth Decay

    Bob, I didn't get that warning when I accessed it (otherwise I would not have posted it), but I removed it nevertheless. Better safe than sorry. Thanks for the heads up.
  24. Truth Decay

    You're right, you don't deserve my best. https://www.logicallyfallacious.com/tools/lp/Bo/LogicalFallacies/140/Poisoning-the-Well https://www.thoughtco.com/poisoning-the-well-fallacy-1691639 http://www.fallacyfiles.org/poiswell.html https://ses.edu/poisoning-the-well If you're going to use a term of art like "poisoning the well," use it correctly (or maybe the whole point of this thread is that there is no truth to include the proper usage of "poisoning the well").
  25. Truth Decay

    Do you even know what "poisoning the well" means? It's preemptive by nature and the article I cited that you're referring to is an examination after the fact which begs the question, how could it be preemptive? You've revealed yourself for what you truly are - a cowardly frog who hides behind anonymity, sarcasm, straw man fallacies, and vague/cryptic comments. If, however, this is truly what you're reading and thinking, someone has poisoned the well that WIFCON's poor frog drinks from.