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Everything posted by policyguy

  1. Members of the FAR Acquisition Teams are Government employees from DOD & Civilian Departments and Agencies. The FAR Acquisition Finance Team works cases assigned to the Team by the FAR Principals for FAR Parts 15.4, 28, 29, 30-32. Additional information may be found in the FAR Operating Guide at the following web link: http://www.acq.osd.mil/dpap/dars/docs/FAR_Operating_Guide_July_2015.pdf
  2. page limitations on proposals

    Here's an interesting GAO Protest Decision on page limitations that you may find interesting to read. It was a best value RFP to at least two fixed-price, IDIQ contracts, for a period of 5 years. The solicitation was issued as a small business set-aside, and established a minimum contract value of $2.9 million, and a lifetime ceiling of $120 million. The solicitation instructions limited proposals to 25 pages, specified the margin settings and font sizes to be used, and required that proposals be submitted electronically. (GAO Decision B-299305, Mathews Associates, Inc., March 5, 2007 http://www.gao.gov/decisions/bidpro/299305.htm). This topic has been covered previously at WIFCON - here's an example: http://www.wifcon.com/arc/forum350.htm I'm not a fan of page limitations in offers but I understand the argument for using them.
  3. This is too important an issue for you and your company to seek advise in this type of forum If you and your company have not already done so hire a good government contracts attorney and get them on the case ASAP.
  4. Option Exercise Likelihood

    In my experience funding was a main concern on whether or no not an option would be exercised especially if there was a Continuing Resolution.
  5. Some agencies, like NASA, use voting members and non-voting members on the SEB. To my knowledge DOD does not use voting members so that is why you cannot find a reference in the DFARS. For more information on how NASA uses voting members on the SEB see the NASA FAR Supplement 1815.370 NASA source evaluation boards at: https://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/procurement/regs/1815.htm In addition the NASA Source Selection Guide provides agency-wide guidance to individuals participating in the SEB process and contains information on voting members and is available at: http://prod.nais.nasa.gov/portals/pl/documents/Source_Selection_Guide_March_2012.pdf.
  6. Acquisition Reform ― It’s Soylent Green!

    He provided some good examples in a previous blog entry that I suggest you may want to review:
  7. Collection of State Taxes

    I might suggest you start your research with The Debt Collection Act (5 U.S.C. 5514). I believe there is some implementing policy at FAR 32. There are other laws concerning this as well. I hope this helps.
  8. FAR Case 2016-005

    It's not OFPP or the FAR Councils that required this proposed rule it was Congress. Specifically, Section 887 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016 told the FAR Councils to issue a rule. I believe if the FAR Councils were able they would not have put this rule out but since it's a statute I don't think they had a choice of saying to Congress thanks but we don't think this is necessary. Since this rule is implementing a statute I don't believe it will be subject to the recent memo of putting new regulations on hold. More to follow. It will be interesting to see what happens based on the public comments received by the FAR Councils.
  9. A district court judge on Monday night issued a preliminary injunction freezing the Obama administration’s Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces FAR Rule that was to have taken effect on Tuesday: http://www.govexec.com/contracting/2016/10/judge-temporarily-blocks-rule-aimed-fair-treatment-federal-contract-workers/132627/?oref=top-story Preliminary Injunction.pdf
  10. I would caution that you and your group to be extra vigilant in Paris. I saw this yesterday about Paris: "Arrests made after car containing gas cylinders found near Paris's Notre Dame" http://www.france24.com/en/20160907-arrests-car-gas-cylinders-notre-dame-paris Enjoy Paris - it is on my travel list - but be alert - safe travel!
  11. You may submit your request to change the FAR by contacting the Office of Federal Procurement Policy: https://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/procurement_default Information on how the FAR is changed may be found in the FAR Operating Guide: http://www.acq.osd.mil/dpap/dars/docs/FAR_Operating_Guide_July_2015.pdf
  12. Found one from DOD that you may be able to use: www.acq.osd.mil/dpap/cpic/cp/docs/training.ppt
  13. Defective Solicitation

    I would check the solicitation and buying office and see if there is a solicitation ombudsman for this buying office that you can contact and raise your issues and concerns. Some agencies have established an ombudsman to help resolve concerns or disputes that arise during the acquisition process, including the solicitation phase, and this may be helpful with your situation.
  14. Did you read the Federal Register Notice for the final rule for this clause? If not it might be worth your time to review. Here is a link to the Federal Register Notice: https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2016/05/16/2016-11001/federal-acquisition-regulation-basic-safeguarding-of-contractor-information-systems
  15. Army General: Screw this procurement nightmare.

    I would advise the general to do two things. First I would recommend he review the Report of the “Commission on Army Acquisition and Program Management in Expeditionary Operations”: http://www.acq.osd.mil/dpap/contingency/reports/docs/gansler_commission_report_final_report_20071031.pdf. It appears that many of these issues highlighted in the report, although for expeditionary contract related acquisitions,seem to me they are still found regardless of what is being acquired. I believe the general would benefit from reading this report and see what can be taken from this report and applied to this situation. The second recommendation I would give is for him to hold accountable the Army acquisition officials that should be helping him, which if I'm not mistaken, is the office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Procurement: http://www.army.mil/article/95781/Deputy_Assistant_Secretary_for_Procurement__Mr__Harry_P__Hallock/
  16. Army General: Screw this procurement nightmare.

    He is a major player in the "system", he should know better. He is the Army Chief of Staff and did not come to that office without having some experience with the DOD/DA acquisition system. You have previously written yourself that "..contracting with the U.S. government is the most complex business in the world. It’s right up there with trading derivatives." If he has a problem he has courses of action to pursue such as he can submit to Congress a legislative proposal to make changes to the acquisition system to his liking and then press the FAR System and the Army to implement them in the Army supplemental regulations; he can submit to Congress a request for an supplemental appropriation for Glock pistols of his liking, he can do, as one of the articles mention above, seek to add the requirement for Glock pistols to an existing contract, etc. As you have previously written "by the spirit of John Galt (Ayn Rand’s fictional hero in Atlas Shrugged) If you can’t play with the big boys you should have stayed off the field...". I'm sorry but I don't have much sympathy for this General. He reminds me of the General in a book and movie that HBO made from it called "The Pentagon Wars" (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Pentagon_Wars). Perhaps that is not how policy people should think but I try to do the best I can with the acquisition system that we are given.
  17. Army General: Screw this procurement nightmare.

    The General does not know how good he has it. At least he has weapons available for use. Cannot say the same for some of the US Allies. For example, the General should be thankful that he is not in the German Army. "Recently a German battalion assigned to NATO's rapid response force used broomstick handles instead of guns on a joint exercise due to chronic equipment shortages" - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/germany/11420627/German-army-used-broomsticks-instead-of-guns-during-training.html
  18. The termination should be in writing and ensure it is acknowledged by the COR and COR management. And as Vern says the Program Office should nominate a replacement. I would check your agency for a COR handbook. As an example DOD has a COR Handbook. The most recent version I can find is dated March 22, 2012. In Chapter 2 it has information on COR appointment and termination. Here is the link: http://www.acq.osd.mil/dpap/cpic/cp/docs/USA001390-12_DoD_COR_Handbook_Signed.pdf
  19. Two possible conflict of interest scenarios

    SmBiz: I would recommend that you read a blog post that Vern wrote several years ago entitled "Tips for Clueless Would-Be Contractors". The link is below. I have found this entry useful over the years and I believe you will benefit greatly not only for you both others in your company.
  20. Consolidation

    Did you look at the policy for Interagency Acquisitions (FAR 17.5/DFARS 217.5)?
  21. Where's the concern over E.O. 13658, Establishing a Minimum Wage for Contractors? Same type of E.O. same process to be followed. There is no sense in wasting time and energy on something that will take a year or more to come into the acquisition regulations. Additionally this will cross into a new Administration. Executive Orders can and have been rescinded. But for the time being there is nothing much we can do now. Time and energy is probably better off being spent on getting ready for a lapse in appropriation (again!) and not raising the debt limit than this E.O.
  22. Well the EO has been issued. We are going to have to wait and see what DOL issues to implement the EO and then what the FAR Councils issue - I believe it states something to that effect in the EO in section 3. The public will have an opportunity to provide comment for both the DOL and FAR Councils actions. I am also not sure about applying any new FAR policy changes to existing actions - see FAR 1.108 (d). Don't like the EO fine - write up your comments and submit them to Regulations.gov when the DOL and FAR Federal Register Notices are published. I'm going to wait until the end of the process and after I have had an opportunity to read the final implementing regulations.
  23. Grant Audit Companies

    GSA has contractors available to provide audit services for the government on its Special Item Number 520-7 with 125 available contractors. I'm not sure if this would help with grant audits but this information might help you identify potential sources for your need and you can contact them and see what they have on the commercial side for grant audits. Here's a link to the web site: http://www.gsaelibrary.gsa.gov/ElibMain/SinDetails?executeQuery=YES&scheduleNumber=520&flag=&filter=&specialItemNumber=520+7
  24. How can I become an 1102?

    I came to the government from private industry via an Acquisition and Contracting Intern Program. If you have a Bachelor's degree that has a minimum of 24 business credits you should qualify. My intern program was a 2 year program starting at the GS-7 position and at the end was GS-11 - this may vary among the Departments and Agencies. Here's one web site for for reference: http://www.acquisitionacademy.va.gov/schools/internship/ There are others so you may want to look for a Department or Agency that has vacancies. I was able to get hired around this time of year since they wanted to fill the positions by the end of the fiscal year so the earlier you start your search and submit application(s) the better.
  25. Reporting Suspected Violations to the IG

    Concerning the above discussion on the CO talking to the supervisor I would agree that absent some form of notification from the contractor I believe it would be prudent for the CO to talk this over with the supervisor. However, if the contractor provides notice IAW FAR 52.203-13 Contractor Code of Business Ethics and Conduct, I believe the notice to the CO would be a copy - the clause requires the contractor to report directly to the contract Agency OIG with a copy to the CO. The CO may want to give a heads up to the supervisor that this action has occurred but if the clause is followed the Agency OIG will not need something from CO regarding notification from the contractor - since its assumed they will already have received it. This is relatively new policy - the clause is dated April 2010 - so it seems it would also be prudent to review not only this FAR part but supplemental agency guidance.