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napolik

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Everything posted by napolik

  1. Contracting Scandals

    This is a case where Fat shaming is appropriate!
  2. Small Business Set-Aside

    You might wish to read Camden Shipping Corporation, B-406171; B-406323, Feb.27, 2012: http://www.gao.gov/assets/590/588932.pdf
  3. Small Business Set-Aside

    19.506 -- Withdrawing or Modifying Small Business Set-Asides. (a) If, before award of a contract involving a small business set-aside, the contracting officer considers that award would be detrimental to the public interest (e.g., payment of more than a fair market price), the contracting officer may withdraw the small business set-aside determination whether it was unilateral or joint. The contracting officer shall initiate a withdrawal of an individual small business set-aside by giving written notice to the agency small business specialist and the SBA procurement center representative (or, if a procurement center representative is not assigned, see 19.402(a)) stating the reasons. In a similar manner, the contracting officer may modify a unilateral or joint class small business set-aside to withdraw one or more individual acquisitions. (b) If the agency small business specialist does not agree to a withdrawal or modification, the case shall be promptly referred to the SBA representative (or, if a procurement center representative is not assigned, see 19.402(a)) for review. (c) The contracting officer shall prepare a written statement supporting any withdrawal or modification of a small business set-aside and include it in the contract file.
  4. Not a good clerk

    Speaking of FPDS, the GAO likes it, sufficiently: http://www.gao.gov/assets/690/683273.pdf
  5. Not a good clerk

    These days, most 1102s can't spell FPDS as their automated procurement systems "populate" FPDS automatically. In fact, many, if not most, automatic procurement systems create solicitations and contract awards with minimal involvement by 1102s. Gone are the days when 1102s assembled line items and specs, deliveries, inspections and acceptances and when they reviewed clause and provision prescriptions to assure compliance with FAR and with common sense (e.g. are Sections B, C, L and M consistent internally and with each other?). Gone are the days when they reviewed contract files as they entered data into FPDS. Errors are attributed to the software, not to the 1102 and the COs. Perhaps it's time to modify FAR 1.602 to reflect the new IT reality!
  6. Not a good clerk

    I have a good deal of sympathy with the 1102’s abandonment of his efforts to post a synopsis on FBO. This is particularly true if he abandoned his efforts on FBO in favor of reading, interpreting and applying the FAR correctly and of developing an acquisition strategy that enables his customer to meet its mission. With the wholesale application of IT to procurement over the past 20 years, the procurement knowledge of 1102s has declined noticeably. They spend too much time attempting to comply with arbitrary and capricious IT dictates and too little time reading FAR and GAO decisions interpreting the FAR, doing market research, putting together concise and comprehensible solicitations, and conducting efficient and effective source selections. When I was a young 1102, I didn’t fight with a typewriter or fax machine; a clerk did. Let’s restore an environment where the 1102 masters the FAR and the markets supporting his or her customers, not the incomprehensible software underlying FBO, SPS and FPDS!
  7. SB Set-Aside LPTA Evaluation Factors

    When conducting a competition involving a set aside, it is not uncommon to use responsibility factors as evaluation factors (e.g. past performance, personnel résumés). However, one cannot avoid the requirement for a responsibility determination and, if necessary, a certificate of competency, if the factor is evaluated on a “pass/ fail” basis and if the small business contractor’s quote/ proposal is determined to have failed. FitNet Purchasing Alliance File, B-410263, Nov. 26, 2014. http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/667235.pdf See also this decision involving an IFB and an assessment of personnel résumés: Coastal Environmental Group, Inc., B-407563; B-407563.3; B-407563.4, Jan. 14, 2013. http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/651544.pdf
  8. MATOC Small Business Set-Asides

    19.203 -- Relationship Among Small Business Programs. (a) There is no order of precedence among the 8(a) Program (subpart 19.8), HUBZone Program (subpart 19.13), Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) Procurement Program (subpart 19.14), or the Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) Program (subpart 19.15). (b) At or below the simplified acquisition threshold. For acquisitions of supplies or services that have an anticipated dollar value exceeding $3,500 ($20,000 for acquisitions as described in 13.201(g)(1)), but not exceeding $150,000 ($750,000 for acquisitions described in paragraph (1)(i) of the simplified acquisition threshold definition at 2.101), the requirement at 19.502-2(a) to exclusively reserve acquisitions for small business concerns does not preclude the contracting officer from awarding a contract to a small business under the 8(a) Program, HUBZone Program, SDVOSB Program, or WOSB Program. (c) Above the simplified acquisition threshold. For acquisitions of supplies or services that have an anticipated dollar value exceeding the simplified acquisition threshold definition at 2.101, the contracting officer shall first consider an acquisition for the small business socioeconomic contracting programs (i.e., 8(a), HUBZone, SDVOSB, or WOSB programs) before considering a small business set-aside (see 19.502-2(b)). However, if a requirement has been accepted by the SBA under the 8(a) Program, it must remain in the 8(a) Program unless SBA agrees to its release in accordance with 13 CFR parts 124, 125 and 126. (d) In determining which socioeconomic program to use for an acquisition, the contracting officer should consider, at a minimum— (1) Results of market research that was done to determine if there are socioeconomic firms capable of satisfying the agency’s requirement; and (2) Agency progress in fulfilling its small business goals. (e) Small business set-asides have priority over acquisitions using full and open competition. See requirements for establishing a small business set-aside at subpart 19.5.
  9. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    Hmmm. That appears to conflict with FAR 13.003(c)(2). In fact, GAO sustained a protest against DLA on this matter back in 2009: Critical Process Filtration, Inc., B-400746, B-400747, B-400750, B-400751, B-400752, B-400785, Jan 22, 2009. FAR sect. 13.003(c)(2); see also 10 U.S.C. sect. 2304(g)(2) ("A proposed purchase or contract for an amount above the simplified acquisition threshold may not be divided into several purchases or contracts for lesser amounts in order to use the simplified procedures . . ."). In our view, DLA is using the streamlined features of simplified acquisitions where the solicitation on its face demonstrates that the use of those procedures is improper. Indeed, DLA's experience under the resulting IDPO demonstrates this point: less than 1 month after issuance of the IDPO (which the RFQ described as having a maximum term of 2 years), DLA had already reached the $100,000 ceiling. In addition, the procurement history for this part, and the estimated quantity identified in the solicitation, strongly suggest that DLA will make additional purchases to meet its continuing needs. We therefore sustain this protest. http://www.gao.gov/decisions/bidpro/400746.htm Are you sure these items are not "commercial items "?
  10. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    Another question: Are the contracts covering the same, or different, items?
  11. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    FAR 13 has 2 thresholds. $150,000 for non-commercial items [FAR 13.003 (b )(1)] and $ 7 million for commercial items [FAR 13.500 (a)]. One cannot exceed the thresholds without moving the procurement to a different FAR Part (e.g. FAR Part 15). Contracting officers stay within the thresholds for non-commercial or commercial items by negotiating reductions in quantities or unit prices. In the case of DLA, perhaps the AUTOMATED CONTRACT EVALUATION SYSTEM does the work. These negotiations to stay within thresholds are not uncommon.
  12. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    Well, either the quantity or the unit price was reduced to get under $150k non-commercial SAP threshold. The reduction occurred automatically pursuant to some provision in the solicitation or in some agreement to participate in the automated system described above. Or, it occurred after the CO had negotiations. By the way, do you have the contract / purchase order number?
  13. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    I have been unable to get a full RFQ containing the evaluation provision. However, I'll bet the automated system issues a solicitation containing a provision stating that no award will exceed $150k and that DLA reserves the right to adjust quantities and or prices to stay below the $150k threshold.
  14. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    govcon 3684, I looked at some of the DLA regs implementing the FAR and DFARS. For noncommercial items for which FAR 13 imposes the SAP limit of $150,000, contractors must sign agreements stating that "The aggregate value of all orders shall not exceed the simplified acquisition threshold (see FAR 2.101)." I also see that DLA uses an automated procurement system. I have not been able to see the provisions of a DLA RFQ used with the automated system, but I'll bet that 1) the RFQs lead to awards of IDIQ contracts and that 2) there is a provision stating that the system automatically will seek price reductions if the total evaluated quote prices does exceed $150,000. Or, perhaps the provision says that the quantity of items will be reduced so the total price remains at, or below, $150,000. So, every award stays at $150,000 or below. The "abstract" you viewed, does it show the names and prices of the firms submitting quotes?
  15. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    Which agency issued the solicitation and awarded the contract?
  16. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    I am surprised that you have been able to get your hands on a abstract of quote prices submitted under FAR Part 13. Except for the prices of the winning quote, the prices placed on the abstract by the contract specialist should not be released to the general public. Can you provide the number of the solicitation that requested the bids or quotes (e.g. N68171-17-Q-1234, or N68171-17-B-1234)? Also, if you have a copy of the solicitation, is there a provision that describes the basis for the award?
  17. Nice post, Monsieur. Do you understand why pcojt10 is trying to add a cost reimbursement line item and to exercise an option to extend the delivery date of a fixed price contract?
  18. Contract modification to stay under $150,000

    Bids and bid abstracts are covered by FAR Part 14, Sealed Bidding. Bid abstracts are available to the public. See FAR 14.403 ( b). The $150,000 threshold does not apply to FAR Part 14. The $150,000 threshold is covered by FAR 13, Simplified Acquisition Procedures. Abstracts of quote or offer prices are not made available to the public. See FAR 13.106-3. Are you sure you saw abstracts of quotes submitted under FAR Part 13? .
  19. I am at a complete loss of ideas and words. Why in the world would one convert a FFP contract to cost reimbursement type when the Gov't delays the delivery? You extend the delivery period, and, if necessary, you increase the price to reflect the increase costs to the contractor associated with the delay in delivery. Even less comprehensible is the introduction of an option! An option for what? Please explain before the falling gray hair obscures all the letters on the keyboard!
  20. As my hair grays, thins and falls out, I notice that my memories are thinning and falling as well. However, my stronger memories in life involve my experiences in procurement. Since I can recall experiences relevant to pcojt10’s circumstance, I will share the ones involving modifications of firm-fixed price contracts. I was fortunate enough to find a job in an organization that emphasized OJT. The OJT involved training sessions on specific procurement circumstances, and it took the form of case assignments that exposed me to various types of supplies and services and various types of contracts. My first assignment was to a branch that used firm-fixed-price contracts for machine tool construction and repair. I competed, awarded and administered dozens of contracts. In a significant number of contracts, issues arose after the contract was awarded. The customers revised specs, delivery dates and delivery locations, and details of government furnished property (GFP); contractors made erroneous interpretations of contract terms, presented non-compliant machine tools or made errors in delivery. Whenever an issue involving specs or delivery arose, I would modify the contract to change specs, or to shift delivery dates or locations. In so doing, either I changed the specs in Section C, or the schedule and locations in Section D, or I changed both Sections C and D. Sometimes, I also changed the prices in Section B to reflect increases or decreases in prices associated with the revisions to specs, delivery or GFP. The contract mod was very simple and straightforward and within the scope of the contract: increase or decrease prices, adjust specs, shift delivery dates and sites, and/or modify the GFP. As is the case with pcojt10’s circumstance, there was no need to add options or cost reimbursement line items. Modification of the contract was simple and straightforward. Follow Monsieur Vern’s advice.
  21. Blind competitions?

    The GAO decision didn't indicate which Best Value method was used. Whether LPTA or tradeoff, the CO need not consider past performance if he or she documents the file: See also 15.304(c ) (3) (iii): Since this was an 8(a) set aside, I can understand why past performance was not used as a factor.
  22. Blind competitions?

    Reject the proposal!! http://www.gao.gov/products/B-414060?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery#mt=e-report
  23. Awarding to More Awardees

    Issue the amendment to the firms submitting offers or quotes. Then, award the revised maximum number of contracts.
  24. Awarding to More Awardees

    See Latvian Connection, LLC; Solution Managers International--USA, B-408182.3, B-408182.4, Aug. 13, 2013: I believe the number of offers or quotes would not have increased had you amended the solicitation prior to its closing. So, I think it is reasonable to amend the solicitation and to issue the amendment solely to the firms that submitted offers/ quotes.
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