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Corduroy Frog

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Everything posted by Corduroy Frog

  1. Thanks to all who are participating in this discussion. All of you are more knowledgeable than myself. However: If a company is disclosed as a "total cost input" methodology for cost allocation, can they change as a result of this relatively new phenomenon? Regardless of what Huntsville RFPs are saying, contracting officers are going after this new approach like a pig after slop. Incurred cost submissions address cost only and not revenue (except for the section addressing T&M). And there are several instances where revenue does not flow as cost does. So if G&A is not allowed on Travel and ODCs for purposes of capturing revenue, does a contractor still have to do so for cost purposes on an incurred cost submission? If so, their G&A rate does not change, and they cannot recover the loss. ji20874, thanks for your comments, but you tend to minimize the effect of this. Chiefly, because no other element consumes as much administrative and G&A time as Travel. Advances, JTR, Expense Reports, etc. Not to mention application of JTR can result in a real loss if G&A is not allowed. There is real cost involved, not just imagined indirects.
  2. Thanks for your help ji20874. So far, the problems have been with proposals submitted in the last several months - no awards. The RFPs do not contain the FAR clause. Forgive me, also, but I'm not familiar with Alt. I, and I don't encounter Alt. I in my searches.
  3. Thank you ji20874 for your response. I have read FAR 52.212-4 in its entirety and find no mention of travel. Is it possible to produce a paragraph in response, or a link to the relevant passage?
  4. I began a discussion on this a few months ago, when certain agencies were disallowing G&A on Travel Costs. The result of the discussion was that only GSA work would disallow G&A on Travel and even then only with negotiations with the contractor. Since then, it appears Disallowance of G&A on Travel is sweeping the industry like an epidemic. We are told (as several contractors in Huntsville AL have been told) that G&A is not going to be allowed on Travel. One of the agencies said there is a new FAR clause disallowing it. When I raised the discussion a few months ago, no one on this forum was aware of such a "new FAR clause." I wish to raise the discussion again, because many customers all-of-a-sudden insist that no G&A be priced with Travel. On the face of it, very few things require the administrative time like Travel does.
  5. Thanks. I've heard of Procas but know very little. Does anyone have hands-on experience with Lojix? Or even heard of them?
  6. What happened to the unallowability of legal costs where the government is the defendant?
  7. Does anyone have experience with both CostPoint and Unanet? I'm looking for a comparison. Possible factors for discussion include - capabilities, user-friendliness, and cost. Knowledgeable people out there are invited. Thanks, Corduroy Frog.
  8. "removed from a bid" simply means during negotiation, the COR subtracted G&A which had been applied to travel. I've read FAR52.212-4 Alt I, but could find nothing about disallowing indirect costs. Thanks for the discussion.
  9. Today is the first I have heard of this, where a COR removed G&A from Travel on a recent bid. We were told there was a new FAR clause which prohibits the application of G&A on travel, reimbursable or otherwise. Certain DoD customers have been trying to do this for a few years now, and because there was no FAR to prevent it, contractors could charge G&A on Travel unless there was language in the contract to prevent it. And it sorta hacks me off too, because nothing creates more administrative hassle than travel advances, expense reports, JTRs, etc. For the last few years, when I've run into this, I've recommended adding about 1/2 point to the Fee to compensate. What about this "new" FAR clause? Is it for real? How long has it been around?
  10. I have encountered a situation where the medical premium for an employee is $800/mo ($9600/yr), but his bi-weekly withholding is $220 (or $5720/yr.). In other words, employee is paying nearly 60% of the cost. Perhaps not as rare as you may think. Some employers don't want to pay anything - believe employees should tote the entire bag. I have heard from other people that the employer may not recover more than 50% of the total premium. My information comes from a couple of comrades in the industry, but I don't know where the cite exists. Perhaps it is part of Obamacare, perhaps part of section 125 - dunno. Any discussion?
  11. I have seen an increasing incidence of RFPs which state their effort is not subject to the SCA. In such an occurrence: If the contract works mainly professional people, but has a few clerical and administrative people also working, are the clerical people subject to the SCA anyway, even if the customer states the contract will not be subject to SCA? [my uninformed position is yes they will be subject to SCA] If said clerical people are not paid SCA scale and benefits, and this is later discovered by the Dept of Labor to be a violation bearing additional payments, will the customer be liable for restitution because of their statement? [my uninformed position is the customer will not be held responsible, and will claim it is the contractor's responsibility] Thank you in advance for any relevant discussion.
  12. When (if ever) is it possible to charge a contract outside of the Period of Performance? What if the government simply wants performance in advance of their stated PoP?
  13. As for Question #2, I'll add a perspective not mentioned heretofore. It is possible for the incumbent to pose technical questions, the discourse of which can only be known by the customer and the incumbent. Potential purpose is to frighten other offerors by revealing how much must be known to operate the effort, or another purpose to derail other offerors. What I don't know is how evaluators respond if they suspect the incumbent is sowing bad seeds.
  14. It is worthwhile if we can justify loading a $30,000 deposit with something. There are multiple jobs attached to this one which also could make it worthwhile. I will become more clear and simply ask the question: Can a cash deposit be loaded with indirect or fee? A cash deposit, after all, is not a cost. The deposit is required to cover risk.
  15. Negotiation going on with a customer. Situation: $30,000 cash deposit required for security reasons. There is $10,000 more work. Looking for a $40,000 contract, including $30,000 cash deposit. Strange. Labor gets loaded with fringes. Labor & Fringe get loaded with Overhead. Labor, Fringe, & Overhead get loaded with G&A. etc. etc. I don't believe a cash deposit can get loaded with anything except possibly interest - and with today's interest rates this won't amount to much. There are not enough indirect & fee bearing elements to make this contract worthwhile if we can't load the cash deposit with anything except a 5% annualized interest rate. Floor is open for suggestions, or authoritative FAR excerpts.
  16. That pretty much answers the question, and I agree. Thanks to all...
  17. Retread, thanks for your usual help. My question is really "when" is the cost incurred. The contractor has a legal obligation to pay when a purchase order is entered, and this is recorded as an expenditure for non-profit entities. However, the obligation to pay is a future obligation and is subject to availability, quality, and delivery of goods. The quote you present from the FAR is not in question, but the definition of "actual cost experience" is subject to interpretation and thus my question. My general feeling, and somewhat supported by your response, is that the incurred cost needs to be more solidified than the simple issuance of a purchase order.
  18. A non-profit records committed purchases as expenditures prior to receiving goods and title. Even though the purchases account shows the expense, the cost hasn't really been incurred in the sense that we normally consider. Does their incurred cost submission need to remove such expenditures in the calculation of incurred cost?
  19. Matthew, thanks for your response, but the Forbes examples are all in the commercial world. The contractor in question is a disadvantaged government contractor.
  20. Retread, we are indeed talking about an 8(a) contractor. Since I brought the subject up, the situation has gotten even worse. SBA is telling the owner that she must pay herself more than absolutely anyone who works in her company and gets a W-2. Contractor has maybe a half dozen employees who are I.T. specialists, such as CyberSecurity Architects, Oracle Database Engineers, and the like. One of these makes in excess of $180,000 per year. In spite of these high-level employees (the cost of whom are covered by contract revenue), there are not enough contracts to support an indirect salary of $185,000 without the company incurring a loss. $185,000 is more than all other indirect costs combined. Why would SBA want to insist that this contractor incur a loss by requiring the owner to pay herself this much?
  21. Thanks for the responses. In the event none of the CAS or FAR prompts such as reclassification, may the contractor do so unprompted and of his/her own volition? "Here2Help" thanks for the conversation. We have explored many alternatives, but the executive salary is the elephant in the room. Officer contends that the SBA is requiring payment over and above everyone else in the company.
  22. Excessive Officer salaries have been considered Unallowable Cost. One of the figures I've heard would be an excess of $400,000. Can a salary be considered excessive under other conditions, e.g. more than 10% of revenue, or something similar? I would like to move some Officer salary to unallowable to reduce G&A rates...
  23. Contract Type is relevant. If this was a fixed price contract, you may not suffer as you think. Leaving out Vacation, Sick, Holiday would mean the fringes were understated, but your Direct Labor would be overstated by a significant number of hours and dollars. What you "lost" in fringes would be "gained" in direct labor and cost. If you completely left out your payroll taxes and worker's comp, your contract amount is truly short by what would be proper. Your RFEA should include the increase in labor, increase in fringes, and payroll taxes/workers comp in proper amounts whether they were bid correctly the first time or not.
  24. I'm certainly willing to do so. I believe others are using innovative approaches, whereas I am strictly dependent on math. I have heard some fallout where one lady had her salary cut from $45K to $30K and quit. I don't know how to price massive cuts like this and get away with it. Another instance was a single FTE where the Q&A indicated the specific Labor Category on the WD, with specific H&W and Sick Pay. Got underbid by 30% on that one too somehow. In most cases, the "line items" are no more than 12 months with a FFP on Schedule B, so being able to see line items won't help a lot. Thanks for the discussion.
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