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metteec

FAC 2005-73, Positive Law Codifications of Title 41 USC

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Late last month, the FAR Council released FAC 2005-73. Contracting law is typically a serious topic, but I found humor in the Discussion and Analysis section of the FAC Update. One of the “significant” changes of the FAC was that it changed the names of commonly referenced statutes to plain language names. For examples, all references were changed:

• Davis-Bacon Act, now with less pork, is the Wage Rate Requirements (Construction) statute;

• Contracts Disputes Act dropped the act, and is now Contracts Disputes statute;

• Procurement Integrity Act is now Restrictions on Obtaining and Disclosing Certain Information. The inclusion of the word "certain" seemed a little odd to me;

• Truth in Negotiations Act is now Truthful Cost or Pricing Data. Interestingly, one brushed-aside comment received was that the change “indicates that the Government does not care about dishonest or misleading conduct in negotiations…” Obviously, the commenter never had a Contractor tell them “I am already taking a loss on this deal!” to know that TINA’s name was a misnomer.

• Service Contract Act is now the Service Contract Labor Standards statute (say that five times fast).

I would mercilessly tease the elders that continued to use the term “Best and Final Offers,” or BAFOs, after the FAR Council revised FAR Part 15 references to “Final Proposal Revisions” in 1997. Yet, now I see their struggle, as it will take me a long time to get away from citing the name of the statute.

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It is probably a good thing they changed TINA to Truthful Cost or Pricing Data instead of Truthful Pricing or Cost Data. The first could have an acronym of TCOPD, but the second could have an acronym of TP-OCD. :) TINA was definitely easier to pronounce.

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As the "fidget" dressed up as a baby at the lawn party (Our Gang Comedy) said: "Aww...raspberries!"

EDIT: I found the scene on U-Tube -

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The elimination of the popular names was a good thing. When many laws were first enacted they were given "popular names". But when they were codified their texts were broken up and distributed to different sections of the U.S. Code title into which they were inserted. The original laws were no longer recognizable and the popular names were useless. This has caused untold confusion. Most people today don't know that the rule about discussions in source selection (FAR 15.306(d)) came from Pub. L. 87-653 (1962) -- the Truth in Negotiations Act (TINA). I doubt that very many COs today understand the connection between certified cost or pricing data and what they consider to be a part of a competitive process to which the requirement for certified cost or pricing data usually does not apply, but the connection was once very apparent.

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I remember the significant improvement to the acquisition process made by changing formal advertising to sealed bidding.

TINA by any other name is still a necessary pain in the pattootie. Changing Truth in Negotiations Act to Truthful Cost or Pricing Data will confuse those who do not know the requirement is statutory (and people will not know where the rule about discussions came from).

"Procurement Integrity Act is now Restrictions on Obtaining and Disclosing Certain Information." And the PIA restrictions on post-government employment are now .....?

As I drift off into retirement next month, I will be comforted by the knowledge that I do not have to worry about these name changes.

My hammock is calling.

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...

As I drift off into retirement next month, I will be comforted by the knowledge that I do not have to worry about these name changes.

My hammock is calling.

Congratulations on reaching that point in your career and your life when you can retire. I hope that you feel it's been a good ride, and that you can truly enjoy riding that hammock. Good luck.

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