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52.222-46, Evaluation of Compensation for Professional Employees

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6 hours ago, joel hoffman said:

Not having access to a law library or to LEXIS, etc., I tried to follow the regulatory trail of the prescription and the Provision. I wasn’t able to view the older Federal Register volumes that cited  in my various hardbound FAR’s. My oldest is from 1996. The Provision dates back to 1993 and the FR pages are dated 12/21/1992 (which I couldn’t download). The language and paragraph organization of the prescription in the 1996 FAR varies somewhat but still references similar scope of the policy. 

No, no, no. The guidance about evaluating professional employee compensation has been around since long before 1992. The current language appeared in the very first edition of the FAR as published in the Federal Register in 1983.

For deep background see GAO, Special Procurement Procedures Helped Prevent Wage Busting Under Federal Service Contracts in the Cape Canaveral Area, HRD-78-49, Feb. 28, 1978, https://www.gao.gov/assets/130/121756.pdf.

And see Kingston, "The Service Contract Act of 1965: A Review," Air Force Law Review 1978:

Quote

A new section has since been added to the DAR [Defense Acquisition Regulation] requiring special provisions to be included in solicitations where the services of professional employees are expected to be needed. The section is similar in purpose to that stated in GAO's report. It basically adds the salaries and overall compensation of professional employees to the solicitation's evaluation criteria. The section applies to negotiated contracts in excess of $250,000 where a “meaningful number” of professionals will be employed by the contractor to perform the services. The section also calls for the inclusion, in solicitations for such contracts, of the new DAR clauses which require contractors to submit for evaluation total compensation plans. If such salary plans are unreasonably low, the contractor proposals run the risk of nonselection.

http://digitalcollections.library.cmu.edu/awweb/awarchive?type=file&item=416461

Agencies have issued guidance about evaluating professional employee compensation since the late 1970s. 

 

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9 minutes ago, Vern Edwards said:

No, no, no. The guidance about evaluating professional employee compensation has been around since long before 1992. The current language appeared in the very first edition of the FAR as published in the Federal Register in 1983.

For deep background see GAO, Special Procurement Procedures Helped Prevent Wage Busting Under Federal Service Contracts in the Cape Canaveral Area, HRD-78-49, Feb. 28, 1978, https://www.gao.gov/assets/130/121756.pdf.

And see Kingston, "The Service Contract Act of 1965: A Review," Air Force Law Review 1978:

http://digitalcollections.library.cmu.edu/awweb/awarchive?type=file&item=416461

Agencies have issued guidance about evaluating professional employee compensation since the late 1970s. 

 

Thanks, Vern. I saw that there were earlier references than 1992 but I couldn’t access the 1992 FR background language   I was trying to trace the source of the disconnect between the language in the provision and that in the prescription.

 I’m not a student of the background of the timeframe that ID/IQ’ task orders have been used for acquiring services or for recompeting existing services. The language in the prescription is essentially the same as it is now, since December 1992. 

I will study your citations if I can but am otherwise tied up the rest of today.. 

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Well since we have digressed from intent of the beginners section just an aside that is further digression. 

What I found interesting in tracking the provision from 1983 to current is that the FAR doesn't  address clerical and administrative personnel who could be in the same situation with regard to FLSA and SCA non-application.  Makes me think the lobbyists were at their best when FAR was contrived.

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4 minutes ago, bob7947 said:

I'm going to look at this topic tonight.  I'm too busy now.

Vern has retracted his last comment toward me. I'll do the same.

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Ok, I investigated the links that Vern provided this morning, traces the origins of the policy and procedures concerning anti-wage busting to win service contracts and recompetes of services.  As Vern indicated,  NASA developed  procedures;  The GAO reported on the NASA procedures and successes; Defense Acquisition Regulations incorporated procedures that were similar in intent to NASA’s.  The language is similar to the current provision. 

I suspect that the language, still used today, predates common usage of task order contracts to acquire professional services or to recompete existing services.  

 

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1 hour ago, FrankJon said:

Vern has retracted his last comment toward me. I'll do the same.

I didn't retract anything. I used a britishism. Bob must have deleted it. I still feel the same way.

Don't go back and quote stuff I said six years ago in different discussions. You don't write anything memorable enough to quote, and even if you did I wouldn't go back looking for it in an attempt to embarrass you. I don't do that to any of you, so don't do it to me. Deal with the ongoing discussion or get lost.

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4 minutes ago, Vern Edwards said:

I didn't retract anything. I used a britishism. Bob must have deleted it. I still feel the same way.

Don't go back and quote stuff I said six years ago in different discussions. You don't write anything memorable enough to quote, and even if you did I wouldn't go back looking for it in an attempt to embarrass you. I don't do that to any of you, so don't do it to me. Deal with the ongoing discussion or get lost.

Are you serious right now, Vern? You're whining to me about fairness?

Do not baselessly deride me or others, then cry foul when people call you out for your contradictions and inconsistencies. You called my comment "clueless" for utilizing the same rationale you used six years ago in a different scenario. Give me a break. It is wholly fair that I pointed that out. Now you choose: Were you "clueless" in 2012, or has your thinking evolved on the matter? If the latter, explain why. You don't get to criticize then weasel out of being criticized for the same reason. You don't get to sanitize the paper trail to protect your image, then pretend like everything is OK. Your words matter. Be accountable, Vern.

This pattern you exhibit of ripping into others who post thoughtful comments that you disagree with is shameful. Your tit-for-tat exchanges and incessant need to get the last word are completely embarrassing for someone of your stature.

You're a contracting legend, for whatever that's worth. Show some damn respect to those of us who are here to learn from the best and help others.

 

 

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Man alive! And to think, PepeTheFrog gets censored for saying the 8(a) program is based on race, and speaking plainly about its implementation...

 

As @Gordon Shumway would say, "This was an interesting read..."

 

@bob7947: Friendly advice, don't censor this particular thread. This is the magic stuff. Let it stay, let freedom ring!

Some frogs show up to watch the fur fly. Government contracts is mostly boring, boring stuff. It's fun to have some controversy and some differences of opinion so great that feelings get hurt. If feelings aren't hurt, does anyone really care? Think about it.

[munches popcorn]

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@FrankJon:

You quote a six year old post out of context in an attempt to show that I have been inconsistent. Well, read that six year old quote again, and think. It looks like I was talking about a policy entirely within the scope of Part 15, cost or pricing data.  I was not talking about policies---FAR 16.505(b) and 22.1103---that are beyond the scope of Part 15. My position on the matter in this thread doesn't contradict my earlier one. Arguably, a task order might be a negotiated contract for one purpose, but not for another. 

My initial post did not "deride" you. I expressed frustration with the responses to a straightforward inquiry. "Oh, for Pete's sake" and "Get a clue." That crushed your feelings? When you came back at me I gave a polite, detailed explanation for my position, and heard nothing more from you. I told you to *** *** after you came at me with the supposed contradiction. What's happening now is nothing but you licking your wounds.

My complaint is that your lengthy response to a beginner was likely to send him or her down a road toward needless complexity.

I wrote the following in "The New Rules for Multiple Award Task Order Contracting," The Nash & Cibinic Report, June 1995:

Quote

The multiple award preference policy states that every awardee must be given a “fair opportunity” to be considered for the award of each task order in excess of $2,500. The proposed rule leaves the choice of evaluation factors to the CO's discretion. The CO need not publish a synopsis, solicit written proposals, or conduct discussions with awardees prior to the award of a task order, proposed FAR 16.505(b)(1). The rule precludes protests against task order award decisions. Agencies must appoint task order “ombudsmen” to handle complaints from awardees about task order selections, proposed FAR 16.505(b)(4).

Notwithstanding these liberal policies, it is not difficult to imagine Government procurement officials conducting a mini-source selection before the issuance of each task order. Some will almost certainly consider a more formal procedure to be necessary to ensure fairness. One can easily imagine requests for proposed task order “performance” plans or “management” plans, especially for task orders of significant dollar value. One can also imagine requests for extensive cost breakdowns, certified cost or pricing data, and proposal audits. If too complex and demanding, such procedures would significantly increase an agency's administrative costs, extend the lead time associated with task order issuance, and force awardees to incur significant costs in the preparation and negotiation of task order proposals.

Boy , was I right, or was I right? Just look at what you recommended:

Quote

Posted Monday at 01:56 PM

  On 7/2/2018 at 10:59 AM, MAY-D-FAR-B-WIT-U said:

my initial question is to find out if 52.222-46 applies to orders under 16.505 when the evaluation required by the clause was already performed during the award of the IDIQ?

It depends. In reality, it's up to the CO. Why do I say that? Let's break down the prescription at 22.1103. 

  1. It applies only to "negotiated contracts." According to FAR 15.000, a negotiated contract is:

      Quote

    A contract awarded using other than sealed bidding procedures is a negotiated contract

    Therefore, a task order contract qualifies as "negotiated," not just FAR 15 contracts. See also the definition of "negotiated contract" in The Government Contracts Reference Book. So go to #2.

  2. There's a $700,000 threshold. Is your task order over or under that? If over, continue to #3. (And if it's under, I don't think there's anything stopping you from continuing to #3 if you think it's appropriate.)

  3. It applies when "services are to be provided which will require meaningful numbers of professional employees." Huh?? What is a "meaningful number"? This is why I say it's up to the CO. Any number can be considered "meaningful" or "non-meaningful" depending on perspective. This prescription is kind of ridiculous in this sense. Also, have you confirmed that these are "bona fide" professionals you're hiring, in accordance with FAR 22.1102? I've seen COs overlook this language, thinking the provision applies to all service contracts. In reality, it applies to only a sliver of the service contract pie.

  4. Last, I'll point out that the Provisions & Clause Matrix indicates that this provision is not intended for commercial services. So there is another discriminator if you're looking for wiggle room.

So, if upon reading all of that, you think it applies, then it applies. But there's also a common sense aspect to this. Doing the evaluation required by this provision at the IDIQ level in a multiple award setting doesn't achieve much because the risks it is supposed to mitigate will return once the task orders are competed. That is, contractors may feel incentivized to under-compensate professional employees in order to win work. Unless this provision or similar price or cost realism language is in the TORFP, then they will have the flexibility to do just that. 

When you're contracting for services in a competitive environment, it's usually a good idea to include some kind of "realism" evaluation language in the solicitation to protect the Government's interests (even if it's just "optional" language). Whether you do that through 52.222-46 or custom language is up to the CO.

Huh?

Bob has written that Congress passes too many acquisition statutes. He's right. But that's not the biggest problem in acquisition today. The biggest problem is those members of the workforce who lack the simplicity gene. There are easier ways to make sure that prospective task order contractors will pay enough to attract high quality professionals than invoking the FAR 52.222-46 boilerplate and all that goes with it.

I am criticizing you for answering a beginner's straightforward question with a bloated response likely to encourage him or her to do unnecessary work. A "thoughtful" comment would have included specific recommendations for a simple approach, an approach that would avoid the need for the price realism analysis that GAO requires with FAR 52.222-46.

Now, you can go on about me if you like. You won't be the first.  But at this point you aren't contributing to the analysis of the problem posed by the OP. You want to help others? Try describing a simple approach.

Pass the salt, Pepe.

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Man alive! And to think, PepeTheFrog gets censored for saying the 8(a) program is based on race, and speaking plainly about its implementation...

That is not why your posts were deleted.

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On ‎7‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 6:54 PM, MAY-D-FAR-B-WIT-U said:

we sometimes insert additional provisions when competing orders under 16.505 and in this case, we have.

FAR 16.505 requires agencies to include the procedure for awarding orders in the multiple award task order contract.  Does your agency state in its contracts that it will include provisions that are not included in the contract in instructions for submission of task order proposals?  If the ordering procedures do not inform contractors of this possibility in their contracts, what is your authority to "insert additional provisions when competing orders?

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FAR 16.505(b)(3) says that "If the contract did not establish the price for the supply or service, the contracting officer must establish prices for each order using the policies and methods in subpart 15.4. "  This seems to support Vern's assertion that a task order may be a negotiated contract for some purposes and not for others.

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I’m sure that Congress passes too many acquisition statutes. However, it seems to me that there was and could be a real problem with “wage busting” for professional employees, who aren’t covered under the Service Contract Act.  NASA was concerned and developed procedures to discourage it. The DAR picked up on it and it was adopted in the original FAR. 

In my years with USACE,  I dealt with many professional employees of service contractors for our client Installations, who had worked for many years at the installation, for various contractors, depending upon who won the follow-on contracts. These engineers and scientists generally have a deep sense of duty and loyalty to the mission and the installation and possess vast institutional knowledge. This is extremely valuable during development of design criteria and lessons learned for new design, design-build and construction programs/projects and in providing technical advice during source selections. 

In my opinion, it is good public policy to protect them from wage busting during recompetes. 

To me, the type of contract vehicle used for the recompete contract for those contract employees shouldn’t matter - whether by task order or a stand alone competition. I would want to discourage wage busting 

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11 hours ago, joel hoffman said:

In my opinion, it is good public policy to protect them from wage busting during recompetes. 

Why not simply state that when competing for orders contractors may not reduce the wages paid to professional, administrative, and clerical employees in order to reduce prices? 

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2 hours ago, Vern Edwards said:

Why not simply state that when competing for orders contractors may not reduce the wages paid to professional, administrative, and clerical employees in order to reduce prices? 

Ok with me. 

But if the FAR uses a method developed by NASA for recompetes using a C-Type contract, why not use it for recompetes using a task order under an ID/IQ , D-Type contract?  Just for simplicity’s  sake? Not arguing.  Just asking.  

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1 hour ago, joel hoffman said:

But if the FAR uses a method developed by NASA for recompetes using a C-Type contract, why not use it for recompetes using a task order under an ID/IQ , D-Type contract?

FAR doesn't use "a method developed by NASA." FAR Subpart 22.11 does not prescribe any "method." FAR 52.222-46 prescribes a submission of information. Method is another thing entirely.

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15 hours ago, joel hoffman said:

it seems to me that there was and could be a real problem with “wage busting” for professional employees, who aren’t covered under the Service Contract Act.  NASA was concerned and developed procedures to discourage it. The DAR picked up on it and it was adopted in the original FAR. 

 

15 hours ago, joel hoffman said:

In my opinion, it is good public policy to protect them from wage busting during recompetes

GAO's take:

"The Service Contract Act of 1965 protects all employees of service contractors from wage busting (lowering of wages and benefits by contractors in efforts to become low bidders) except bona fide executive, administrative, and professional employees. To discourage wage busting for professional employees, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Air Force designed special procurement procedures which were used for recompetition on three major contracts. In a review of wages and fringe benefits of 881 of 1,034 employees not covered by the act, no cases of wage busting were found on two of the three contracts, and only two cases were identified on the remaining contract. In the two cases, the contractor paid salaries requested on job applications, and there was no indication of intent by the contractor to wage bust. The procurement procedures influenced contractors to submit proposals based on paying wages and fringe benefits comparable to those paid under the prior contracts, and these factors affected the proposal evaluations. The special procurement procedures demonstrate that a policy directed towards discouraging wage busting is a viable alternative to proposed legislation that would include professional employees under the act."

https://www.gao.gov/products/HRD-78-49

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HOW TO CONSIDER PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEE COMPENSATION WITHOUT INVOKING FAR 52.222-46 WHEN GIVING MATOC CONTRACTORS A FAIR OPPORTUNITY TO BE CONSIDERED UNDER FAR 16.505(b) .

FAR 52.222-46, which is a solicitation provision, not a contract clause, and something of a jumble, requires that offerors submit “total compensation plans” accompanied by “supporting data.” The supporting data must include “recognized national and regional compensation surveys and studies of professional, public and private organizations.” The provision states that the government will evaluate the plan for (1) a sound management approach, (2) understanding of the contract requirements, (3) ability to provide uninterrupted high-quality work, (4) impact upon recruiting and retention, and (5) realism. FAR 52.222-46 has figured in 72 GAO decisions and five COFC decisions. The GAO has said that in the case of fixed price contracts the evaluation is, “in effect,” an evaluation of price realism. See Maxim Healthcare Services, Inc., B-412967.11, June 25, 2018.

FAR 52.222-46 covers two scenarios.

  1. The first scenario is one in which the procurement is a recompete and the issue is whether an offeror is proposing lower wages (salaries and fringe benefits) than are being paid by the incumbent, assuming that the incumbent has maintained a qualified and stable workforce. Payment of lower wages would be “wage busting,” which in 1978 the GAO defined as “lowering employee wages and fringe benefits by incumbent or successor contractors, to be low bidders or offerors on Government service contracts, when the employees continue to perform the same jobs.”
  2. The second scenario is one in which the procurement is new or the incumbent has not maintained a qualified and stable workforce and the issue is whether an offeror is proposing wages sufficient to establish and maintain a qualified and stable workforce. In this scenario, wage busting is not an issue.

When giving MATOC contractors a fair opportunity to be considered for the award of a long-term task order requiring professional work, it would be understandable that an agency might want to ensure that contractors propose wages adequate to the maintenance of a qualified, stable, professional workforce. The question is whether an agency providing a fair opportunity to be considered, and concerned about professional employee compensation, should invoke FAR 52.222-46 and its requirements or do something else---something less demanding, costly, and time-consuming than soliciting and evaluating total compensation plans and supporting data. What are the alternatives?

Keep in mind that FAR 16.505(b) does not require the solicitation of written offers or quotes. See FAR 16.505(b)(1)(ii)

Quote

The contracting officer may exercise broad discretion in developing appropriate order placement procedures. The contracting officer should keep submission requirements to a minimum. Contracting officers may use streamlined procedures, including oral presentations. If the order does not exceed the simplified acquisition threshold, the contracting officer need not contact each of the multiple awardees under the contract before selecting an order awardee if the contracting officer has information available to ensure that each awardee is provided a fair opportunity to be considered for each order. 

See also FAR 16.505(b)(iii) and (iv) for orders that will exceed certain dollar thresholds.

And see FAR 16.505(b)(1)(v)(B):

Quote

Formal evaluation plans or scoring of quotes or offers are not required.

When complying with FAR 16.505(b) (or, for FSS contracts, FAR Subpart 8.4), my goal would be to keep submissions and the evaluation process as simple as possible, consistent with making a sound decision. I would want to avoid requesting and evaluating "total compensation plans" and supporting data, because that would be consistent with keeping submission requirements to a minimum.

Remember than an agency planning to consider professional employee compensation would have to announce that professional employee compensation will be an evaluation factor. Now, going back to the first scenario, discussed above, the agency could simply assume that since the incumbent’s workforce is qualified and stable the wages being paid are sufficient. In that case, the government could simply warn contractors that it will not countenance reductions of professional wages and will not select any contractor that intends to reduce wages. 

Alternatively, the government could state that if a contractor proposes lower wages it must explain how it will maintain the workforce in the face of the reductions. This alternative approach would entail analysis and assessment of any such explanation, and the government will have to make a decision about the wisdom of the reductions and justify any decision to reject a contractor that plans to cut wages. 

Going back to the second scenario, the government could do market research to determine what professional employees are being paid for the kind of work that will be required under the task order. It could then provide the findings of its research to the contractors under consideration and state that any contractor which plans to pay less must explain how they will maintain a qualified and stable workforce. Again, that would entail analysis and assessment of any explanation and justification of any decision.

In either scenario, the government should clearly state that it does not intend for the consideration of professional employee compensation to be or to require a price realism analysis.

The basic idea would be to avoid the requirements, burdens, and confusion of 52.222-46. I think that with a little creativity a CO could find ways consider professional employee compensation without becoming entangled in a solicitation provision of questionable value and meaning.

Keep it simple.

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On ‎7‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 4:19 PM, Vern Edwards said:

Oh, for Pete's sake. See FAR 22.1103. FAR 52.222-46 is a solicitation provision that is to be inserted in RFPs for new contracts. It has no bearing on fair opportunity procedures under FAR 16.505(b)(1). It does not apply when conducting competitions for task orders under MATOCs, which does not entail issuing an RFP, because it is not a new competition, but an order against an existing contract. FAR 16.505(b) does not require the issuance of a solicitation.

FAR is a mess. You have to make sense of it. Professional employee compensations should have been evaluated in connection with the award of the underlying IDIQ contract.

 

While I have enjoyed the read, I am surprised the conversation went past this post. The issuing of a DO/TO is against something already negotiated. If I have learned nothing more from this "gathering of the minds," it is to keep things simple. We have MATOCs, FSSs and NASA's SEWP (to name a few) to ease the administrative burden of federal contracting. The guidance to be innovative (FAR 1.102-4 (e)) has lead to these vehicles being available and we should not make things harder on ourselves.

 

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Vern said:

Quote

Oh, for Pete's sake. See FAR 22.1103. FAR 52.222-46 is a solicitation provision that is to be inserted in RFPs for new contracts. It has no bearing on fair opportunity procedures under FAR 16.505(b)(1). It does not apply when conducting competitions for task orders under MATOCs, which does not entail issuing an RFP, because it is not a new competition, but an order against an existing contract. FAR 16.505(b) does not require the issuance of a solicitation.

FAR is a mess. You have to make sense of it. Professional employee compensations should have been evaluated in connection with the award of the underlying IDIQ contract.

I agree.  Congress, through FASA, gave agencies a way out of a complicated selection process.  Don't revert back to it.  If a program wants a source selection for an order, ask them if they want the work to start next week or next year.  That may shut them up.

I have to go in a minute but one thing sticks out to me in the posts that I have read so far.  It is the use of the words compete or competition in the award of an order under an IDIQ.  I would use something similar to fair consideration of the IDIQ contractors.

I apologize for being so brief on a complicated and controversial subject.

 

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12 minutes ago, Vern Edwards said:

HOW TO CONSIDER PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEE COMPENSATION

Might be better to start from the position of "WHY".   I continue to do what some believe to be less than acceptable research on this subject and I now wonder if 22.1103 has more to do with price analysis than application of labor law.  I say this on the basis of these random thoughts that I have yet been able to fully put together but I think they have bearing.

CAS speaks a lot to "negotiated contracts".   TINA and the requirement for certified cost or pricing data could, might,  depending, or may apply to a TO.   Eerily the threshold of 22.1103 tracks to some extent with the threshold for cost or pricing data.  (Question - what was the threshold in 1983?)

So back to "Why?" and keeping it simple.  If my proposed TO award is going to be subject to certified cost or pricing data then I insert 52.222-46 and if not then I decide as a CO if I want to evaluate professional compensation otherwise and so state without using 52.222-46.  Otherwise I do not mess with it other than what I might do in an effort to  "Consider price or cost under each order as one of the factors in the selection decision."   All said keeping in mind that an overruling decision on use of 52.222-46 for a TO on my part as a CO is if I had the provision in the solicitation for the parent IDIQ(s), what the pricing structure will be etc.

Other random thoughts that probably do not really matter as this thread progresses but all the same I feel they are worth mentioning, besides they were in a draft I was working on until the last few posts appeared so what the heck.

14 hours ago, Vern Edwards said:

Why not simply state that when competing for orders contractors may not reduce the wages paid to professional, administrative, and clerical employees in order to reduce prices? 

 

I  would suggest that the wording be "reduce the salary/fee paid".  Reasoning.  FLSA provides that the positions mentioned are exempt for FLSA.  FLSA and SCA work together and SCA provides that the positions listed as being exempted from FLSA as also exempt for SCA.  Wording used for these positions discusses and emphasizes  "salary or fee" and not wages in almost all cases.

10 hours ago, Vern Edwards said:

FAR Subpart 22.11 does not prescribe any "method." FAR 52.222-46 prescribes a submission of information

 

Not a method as well?  The provision states that the government will -  "evaluate the plan to assure that it reflects a sound management approach and understanding of the contract requirements. This evaluation will include an assessment of the offeror’s ability to provide uninterrupted high-quality work. The professional compensation proposed will be considered in terms of its impact upon recruiting and retention, its realism, and its consistency with a total plan for compensation."  GAO decisions seem to conclude that this is a method that must be used when 52.222-46 is in the solicitation.

 

37 minutes ago, Vern Edwards said:

FSS contracts, FAR Subpart 8.4

Never!  Haven't we already ruled out commercial item contracts?  If yes by my read all FSS contracts are commercial item contracts so forget evaluating professional compensation on these bad boys all together!  Keep it simple, right?

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53 minutes ago, Constricting Officer said:

If I have learned nothing more from this "gathering of the minds," it is to keep things simple. We have MATOCs, FSSs and NASA's SEWP (to name a few) to ease the administrative burden of federal contracting.

 

45 minutes ago, bob7947 said:

Congress, through FASA, gave agencies a way out of a complicated selection process.  Don't revert back to it. 

It's too late. I did a quick search for GAO task order protest decisions and found 195 (including protests of FSS order competitions). I searched among them for "RFP" and found 115. I then searched for "competitive range" and found 39. I searched for "discussions" and found 78. I searched for "final proposal revision" and found 29. I searched for "proposed plan" and found 35. I found the following, or something like it, in many of the decisions:

Quote

With regard to competitions for task and delivery orders under IDIQ contracts, FAR §16.505 does not establish specific requirements for discussions; exchanges with offerors under task order competitions, like other aspects of such a procurement, must be fair, equal, and not misleading... Where, as here, however, an agency conducts a task order competition as a negotiated procurement, our analysis regarding fairness will, in large part, reflect the standards applicable to negotiated procurements.

What those results tell me is that the acquisition workforce is bound mind, hand, and foot to the FAR Part 15 Process Model, and they cannot free themselves. Many of them are incapable of undertaking simple measures. They cannot envision and design simpler, faster processes.

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