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Koprince Law is Now Koprince McCall Pottroff LLC!

It is with great pleasure that we announce that the firm you have known as Koprince Law LLC has a new name: Koprince McCall Pottroff LLC The firm, a boutique federal government contracts firm in Lawrence, KS, will continue to focus on providing services to federal contractors throughout the United States and beyond, with a special focus on those issues unique to small business federal contractors. Said Shane McCall, “It is an exciting time to be serving federal contractors. The f

Koprince Law LLC

Koprince Law LLC

CIO-SP4 Amendment 9, a Last Minute Stay

With less than 24 hours left until proposals were due, NIH released Amendment 9, staying the proposal deadline until August 20, 2021 at Noon Eastern. Amendment 9 says it changes very little, but the innocuous cover letter belies a major change to evaluations for Other Than Small and Emerging Large Businesses (OTSBs and ELBs). On July 23, 2021, NIH released Amendment 8, less than a week after Amendment 7, affirming major changes to the consideration of small business subcontractors. Now,

Koprince Law LLC

Koprince Law LLC

CBCA Cannot Waive Its Own Filing Deadlines

4 C.F.R. 21.2(b) states that, for GAO protests, GAO has the option to dismiss or not dismiss a protest that is filed late if there is good cause or it is an important issue. In other words, if there’s a good reason, GAO can accept an untimely protest. (Please note that this is not suggesting the filing deadline does not matter, GAO treats it very strictly most of the time and you should treat it as a “drop-dead” deadline). For this reason, some think this same discretion applies in other protest

Koprince Law LLC

Koprince Law LLC

SmallGovCon Week in Review: July 26-30, 2021

Happy Friday, Readers. We have been in the midst of a heatwave here in Kansas with temperatures at 100 degrees and the humidity at 91%. Whew! We are very grateful for air conditioning during the dog days of summer. Here’s an interesting fact. The ancient Romans called the hottest, most humid days of summer “diēs caniculārēs” or “dog days.” The name came about because they associated the hottest days of summer with the star Sirius. Sirius was known as the “Dog Star” because it was the brightest s

Koprince Law LLC

Koprince Law LLC

Event: Top 21 Legal Mistakes in Federal Government Contracting

The federal government contracting rulebook is notoriously complex and confusing–but not all confusion is created equally. As attorneys serving federal contractors (many of them small businesses), my colleagues and I often see contractors making the same common legal mistakes or holding the same common legal misconceptions. On August 12, please join me and Nicole Pottroff as we cover our top 21 legal mistakes in federal government contracting–with an emphasis on small business issues–and ex

GAO: Agency Has Discretion on Type of Socioeconomic Set-Aside for Procurement

From a recent GAO decision it appears that the ends can, in fact, justify the means; at least when it comes procurement set-asides for HUBZone companies. The decision is Foxhole Technology, Inc. B-419577 (May 12, 2021). In this matter, Foxhole Technology, Inc., a service-disabled veteran-owned small business, protested the Department of Education’s decision to set aside an RFQ to supply cybersecurity services for HUBZone businesses. In its protest, Foxhole argued that the agency’s decision to se

Is the Revision to the FAR’s Limitations on Subcontracting Finally Nearing the Finish Line?

On June 30, 2016, a major new SBA regulation took effect, overhauling the limitations on subcontracting. The SBA’s new regulation, codified at 13 C.F.R. 125.6, replaced the “old” formulas for calculating compliance–like “cost of the contract incurred for personnel,” for service contracts, with new, easier-to-use formulas based on the amount paid by the government. And, in a major boon for small businesses, the SBA’s new regulation allowed small primes to count work performed by “similarly situ

Five Things You Should Know: SBA 8(a) Program Potential for Success

SBA requires that its 8(a) Business Development Program applicants demonstrate “reasonable prospects for success in competing in the private sector if admitted to the 8(a) BD program” by meeting a number of criteria. This aptly named potential for success rule is easily one of the most common reasons for 8(a) Program application denials. But even still, it seems to be one of the least understood 8(a) application requirements out there. Below, I dig into some of the most important features of th

CIO-SP4 Amendment 8 – NIH Puts Small Businesses Behind the 8-ball

CIO-SP4 Amendment 7, we barely knew you. Less than a week after Amendment 7 went live, we have another amendment to dig into. What is new in this amendment? We have major changes to Other Than Small Business (OTSB) and Emerging Large Business (ELB) certifications. For small businesses, NIH is digging in its heels on consideration of CTA members. While we are not sure how long this amendment will last, it puts small businesses behind the 8-ball. First things first, proposals are stil

SmallGovCon Week in Review: July 19-23

Happy Friday, Readers. Can you believe we are heading into the home stretch of July already? We hope you are able to get in some R&R around this time of year. But it was also an important week in the Federal government contracting arena. Some of the big stories included more oversight from Labor, rules on increasing wages for workers, and increasing opportunities for veterans. You can read more about that and other contracting news in the articles below. Have a great weekend!

GAO: A Higher Rating for One Offeror does Not Mean A Competitor was Penalized

It seems like it should go without saying, but, just because an offeror with better evaluation ratings is preferred over one with neutral ratings does not mean the latter offeror was penalized for having neutral ratings, or that the neutral rating was a penalty. Nonetheless, in a recent bid protest a company creatively argued that it was penalized for having neutral ratings, and GAO unsurprisingly rejected it. Heartland Consulting, B-419228.4 (Comp. Gen. July 8, 2021) involved an award o

CIO-SP4 Amendment 7 – Major Changes to Small Business Teaming Arrangements

CIO-SP4 proposals are now due August 3, 2021. Currently, seven bid protests have been filed with GAO. These amendments are now coming fast and furious. Amendment 6 went live on July 9, 2021, and 10 days later we have another new amendment. Below are some of the key changes in Amendment 7. Overall, it seems like CIO-SP4 amendment 7 shoots first, and then attempts to aim. Here are some of the areas where it appears to miss the mark. Section L.3.7.3. Section L.3.7.3, which is under the

CIO-SP4: Large Mentors Now Get More Credit

I wrote earlier about the restriction on the number of experience examples a large business mentor can provide. Well, NITAAC has listened! OK, they probably weren’t listening directly to me, but let me have this one, alright. CIO-SP4 has been amended to allow large business mentors to contribute two examples of corporate experience per task area. The Chief Information Officer – Solutions and Partners 4 (CIO-SP4) Solicitation includes specific language relating to mentors that was recentl

Event: 2021 GovCon Accounting Summit

Robert Jones of Left Brain Professionals is putting on the GovCon Accounting Summit this week. I’ll be involved in a Panel Discussion – The Need for GovCon Accounting Advisors, at 9:00 AM-10:30 AM ET on July 22, 2021. Hope to see you there. There are many other great topics at the event, so be sure to check it out! The post Event: 2021 GovCon Accounting Summit first appeared on SmallGovCon - Government Contracts Law Blog.View the full article

SmallGovCon Week in Review: July 12-16

Happy Friday, readers! We hope you are enjoying the beautiful summer days. We here at SmallGovCon have definitely been getting out for some much needed vacation time lately. But we still want to keep you up to date on what’s going on in the federal contracting realm. Here are a few noteworthy articles in the federal government contracting world this week, including looking back on the GAO and all the changes that have been made along the way as well as the DoD’s list of recent contract awa

Five Things You Should Know: Tips for Understanding and Using the FAR

Government contracting officials receive detailed training on the FAR. So do employees of some large contractors. But for many others in government contracting, particularly small businesses, there is no formal FAR training. For them, the FAR can seem overwhelming, even scary. I’m not going to sugarcoat it: the FAR is massive. In print form, which is how I read the FAR early in my career, you’re looking at a veritable brick of a book. You’d undoubtedly get some very nice definition by u

Event: The SBA’s Small Business Affiliation Rules for Government Contractors, Hosted by The Catalyst

My colleague Steven Koprince and I are pleased to be speaking at The Catalyst Center for Business & Entrepreneurship this Thursday. Please join us on July 15, 2021 from 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM (CDT) as we discuss the SBA’s affiliation rules in plain English, from rules governing common ownership and management to lesser-known bases of affiliation such as economic dependence and family relationships. The Catalyst always has a great group both organizing the events, and attending! We’re looking

SBA Interpretation of Runway Extension Act Confirmed by Court

The Court of Federal Claims recently reviewed the Small Business Runway Extension Act, particularly SBA’s contention that it was not bound by the 5-year lookback period that Congress enacted for size receipt calculations. Now, SBA has issued its own rule that it will use the 5-year lookback period, at least after a two-year transition period, as discussed in our earlier posts. But there were still some cases working their way through the courts that examined how Congress implemented the Runway E

SmallGovCon Week In Review: June 28 -July 9, 2021

Happy Friday! We hope everyone had a wonderful and safe 4th of July holiday weekend. Despite the holiday, there has been a lot of news and announcements in Federal government contracting these past two weeks. Here are a few articles that we found interesting and informative including news about a new order to bolster cybersecurity, the Pentagon canceling the JEDI Cloud contract and an announcement that Soraya Correa, the Department of Homeland Security’s chief procurement officer, is retiring

OHA: Broken Hyperlink Doesn’t Excuse Not Responding to CVE

In my last blog post I wrote about a contractor’s unsuccessful attempt to convince the GAO that its solicitation was improperly dismissed as being untimely because the State Department didn’t recognize its automatic “out of office” email reply response. It appears that federal agencies in general are unforgiving when it comes to a contractor’s reliance on electronic communications without follow-up. In a recent case, the SBA Office of Hearing Appeals (OHA) rejected a contractor’s petition f

Introducing Our GovCon Teaming Resource Guides!

When it comes to federal contracting, teaming is an invaluable strategy for many businesses–large and small alike. But the rules and processes surrounding teaming can be complex and confusing, even for experienced contractors. That’s why Koprince Law has teamed up ourselves–with the government contracts experts at The Pulse of Government Contracting to create special, in-depth Teaming Resource Guides for federal contractors and subcontractors. After an introduction to the basics of teaming

Event: Responsibility in Government Contracting, Hosted by Govology

To be awarded a government contract, a company must do more than submit the winning proposal — it must be “responsible.” The concept of responsibility in government contracting is far-reaching and can include such things as having adequate financial resources, a satisfactory ethical record, acceptable past performance, and even required security clearances. On July 15, please join me and Chris Coleman as we discuss this cornerstone of government contracting in a session hosted by Govology.

Certificates of Competency: A Little-Known Friend of the Small-Business Contractor

You can’t believe it. You did everything right. The solicitation required that offerors have three distinct licenses. You have two, but one should cover for the license you don’t have. However, the agency says you have to have all three as distinct licenses, and denies your offer. Fortunately, you have a potential savior: The Certificate of Competency (“COC”) What is a Certificate of Competency? 13 C.F.R. § 125.5, helpfully titled “What is the Certificate of Competency Program”, esta

Five Things You Should Know: Eligibility for Small Disadvantaged Business Self-Certification

The Administration’s recent announcement that it plans to boost Small Disadvantaged Business contracting by 50% means that we may see increased interest by government agencies and large prime contractors alike in doing business with self-certified SDBs. But my guess is that the Administration’s push will come with additional oversight, too–after all, increasing the goal isn’t worth much if the government cannot be confident that the contracts it counts toward its SDB goals were awarded to el

CIO-SP4: Is it Limiting Mentor Experience Too Much?

The CIO-SP4 is a big deal for many small and large federal contractors. And lately it’s been a bit of a moving target as to how NITAAC will evaluate the experience of companies working together in prime-sub, mentor-protégé, and joint-venture relationships. We wrote about some of the issues with past performance and other recent changes. One change that caught my eye puts a restriction on the number of experience examples a large business mentor can provide. But should it? The Chief Infor
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