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We have a continuing need to provide facility maintenance (O&M) for two large federal service centers. In the past years contracts have been awarded using competitive SB set-aside procedures. Both contracts are on their last option period (5th year).

Just as we were preparing to solicit these two requirement as SB set-asides we were contacted by a representative of Ability One who asked that we consider adding our requirements to the procurement list and make awards under the authority of the Javits-Wagner-O'day act.

Before we go down that road I have asked our cognizant SBA office if they need to perform an Adverse Impact analysis such as they would do prior to accepting an award under the 8(a) program (13CFR 124.504).

SBA has not responded yet but I wanted to see if anyone on WIFCON has any experience with this issue.

1. Does SBA have any role in this process?

2. Can SBA determine an adverse impact and not allow us to make an award under the authority of the Javits-Wagner-O'day act?

or Is the Committee the only group who can make the adverse impact determination?

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I would definitely keep the SBA apprised of your actions and intentions. I have had good and bad experiences with workshops from Ability One, NIB, and NISH contractors. My only advice to you is don't rush into it, do your due diligence. Ask all your questions and make sure you are satisfied that the workshop will completely meet your needs and be able to satisfy your requirement before agreeing to have it put on the Procurement List. Visit the principles and ask the tough questions, because once your requirement gets put on the Procurement List, it is nearly impossible to remove it and go back out and compete with regular SB firms. I think this is where the Adverse Impact determination would come in. Also, recognize it may take more contract administration effort to ensure you are getting what you are paying for. However, having said that, it can be very rewarding,too as I have seen some of the most appreciative employees on NIB/NISH projects who are very happy to have the opportunity to be working and will bend over backwards to provide customer service.

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I appreciate your input and advice.

I've had discussions with SBA many times for a determination of adverse impact for a possible 8(a) contract but not for Ability One.

What I do know is the Committee has to make an adverse impact determination prior to placing a new requirement on the procurement list but have found nothing that requires or even suggests I should discuss adverse impact with the SBA.

I'm just wondering if SBA would even get involved to determine if there is an adverse impact.

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The key question that must be answered is whether or not persons with "severe disabilities" can perform the work to the level of quality required. See the successful bid protest filed by Systems Application & Technologies at the Court of Federal Claims in late 2012. The protest concerned award of O&M services at Yakima Training Center.

H2H

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