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Everything posted by here_2_help

  1. Vern, ATS is a small engineering firm with less than 200 employees (according to LinkedIn). I agree there is an expedited procedure available.
  2. Bob, I read the decision when you posted it on the front page. (Thank you for doing that, by the way!) My sense is that the issue is important to protest attorneys and their clients. I'm not sure if it does (or should) impact how a CO does business. I would be interested to hear other opinions on that.
  3. Over on the other side of the table, I have a hard time imagining any contractor (other than the smallest) litigating $40,000. I think there would be significant hesitations over litigating $400,000. Ten years ago, while employed at a large DOD contractor, I was told our legal department had a rule of thumb: assume $2 million in (unallowable) attorney's fees and two years to get a decision. If the matter wasn't worth the time and expense, let it go. I would have advised the CO in this situation to call the contractor's (assumed) bluff. Edited to add: Oftentimes these disputes settle between the filing of the COFD appeal and the trial. I don't have the stats but I believe settlements are a common occurrence, at least based on the number of "decisions" that announce settlement.
  4. I believe I know the answer to Question #2 but as these are legal questions -- and I am not an attorney versed in labor law let alone an attorney of any kind -- I'm going to pass. There are hundreds of lawyers who can advise Anonymous FS; I recommend he go to one of them with his questions.
  5. I believe the case Retreadfed alluded to answered that question. (Was it AT&T? I don't have time to research right now.) The answer provided by the court was "the effective date" not the award date.
  6. I'm over here wondering whether the contractor's costs, incurred after award date but prior to effective date, are allowable costs? Do they meet the definition of "pre-contract cost" found in FAR 31.205? If not, what are they?
  7. I don't disagree. Seems like a good, reasonable, interpretation.
  8. I don't believe the question has been answered. We know who is responsible for seeing maintenance is performed as required, but we haven't addressed who pays for the maintenance. Should the maintenance costs be charged as direct costs of the contract that is accountable for the property? Or should the contractor treat the costs of maintenance as an indirect ("overhead") cost? The answer depends on the contractor's established practices and what the contract says. Right now, the contractor is preparing its follow-on proposal and wants to know whether to include the costs in its cost volume as direct costs. If there is no benefit to any other contract, I would accept "charge as direct costs" as a compliant answer. Hope this helps.
  9. Maybe I'm cynical, or maybe I'm just experienced. Either way, before doing anything I would thoroughly explore the ownership of the "losing" firm to see if there are any ties to the program personnel requesting the split.
  10. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1177_B.C.:_The_Year_Civilization_Collapsed Nothing to do with professional growth; simply intellectual curiosity.
  11. I think you really need to get with your consultant. Something is not right here. I am reminded of a contractor I worked with about 20 years ago. The contractor had never had a real US Government prime contract before; all it had was a GSA schedule. One day, they woke up with a $500 Million CPFF contract from a civilian agency. Along the way, they were asked to propose a G&A rate. They asked the CO what a reasonable rate would be, and received an answer that 15% would be a reasonable amount. So that's what the contractor proposed in its priced offer. It was accepted. "What is your actual G&A rate?" I asked the contractor's CFO. "What's a G&A rate?" was the response. Good times.
  12. Do you have a separate contract for each year of performance? A separately priced Option? Why do you need to make an annual "schedule" for an FFP prime contract, if what you are submitting is only a staffing plan? I'm really not clear on what you and your customer have agreed to. Second, the contract should not "state" a combined rate, except perhaps for estimating and/or billing purposes. Your company's actual indirect cost rates are not subject to government customer approval. With respect to your original question, you haven't disclosed the indirect cost rate allocation base used by your combined indirect cost rate. Does your company, in fact, have separate rates for actual costing purposes? If so, what rates apply to subcontractors? Those are the rates that you should burden your subcontractors with when proposing your annual staffing plans. Given the lack of clarity in your posts, my best advice is to hire a government contract accounting consultant--of which there are many to choose from. Let them help you.
  13. Joel, I thought about liquidated damages when I saw this question. All I can say is that when my company saw a liquidated damages clause in a proposed contract, we always proposed an incentive clause as well. Our thinking was that the door needed to swing both ways. Also, it is okay to structure a contract to pay a bonus (other than award fee) for completing the work on-time? Isn't that the parties' expectation? Early delivery bonus/incentive? Yes, I can see that. But on-time? I don't see what the government gains for incentivizing a contractor to comply with the delivery terms of the contract.
  14. My answers, from someone who is not a government contracting officer: No. Not even close. The FAR seems to envision OFPP as the originator of multiple "policy letters" that establish parameters for acceptable contract actions. My sense is that many/most/all of those Policy Letters are quite old. I know a bit about the theory of what it should do. I know where it fits in the Executive Branch org structure. Without doing any research, I could name three. Ain't none. Mythbusting Yes, back in the 90's. Not since then. Policy? No. Operations? Yes. Because of the CAS Board. Yes, because of the CAS Board. Congress can kill OFPP but then we need to restore the CAS Board to its previous independent status.
  15. Chris, Before you propose a new FAR Case, I think you have to be very specific about what you want to see changed. It is not clear to me from your post exactly what your concerns are. As to General Liability insurance, that is a cost accounting matter, in my view, and not a contract clause issue. Hope this helps.
  16. The DoD has several tools/aides available to contracting officers. I don't know how much access a contractor has to them. Start with the Defense Acquisition University (DAU) site and go from there. Ultimately -- and this is why some parties are reluctant to use PBPs -- it is a matter of negotiation. Here are my thoughts but please do your own research. 1. Develop a spend plan (time-phased budget). Layer proposed profit on top of the spend plan. Note that you need to reach 90% of the estimated contract price but not more. 2. Identify key programmatic milestones. Ideally, at least one per month but you can have more than that. Some events may be stand-alone; others may be dependent on others (i.e., cumulative events). 3. Value the milestones/events based on your spend plan. 4. Present to contracting officer. Show your work. Show how you are not front-loading cash to the extent you are actually asking the government for advance payments yourself. 5. Negotiate. 6. Incorporate the final, negotiated, events into the contract.
  17. First, PBPs are the "preferred" form of contract financing payments. Seems to me that your PCO just doesn't want to put in the work to establish event values. PBPs are superior in all respects to Progress Payments based on (adjusted) costs incurred. You should fight for them, especially if you don't have a DCAA-audited and DCMA-approved accounting system. To your other question, if you are paying suppliers at the time of PO placement, as opposed to the time of receipt of materials or finished goods, then those are "advance payments" and are not eligible for inclusion in progress payment requests. I would advise -- if possible -- avoiding advance payments to your suppliers. Those are my thoughts.
  18. Yeah, that's a good catch. Now look at the dollar threshold at 49.108-4 and compare it to the threshold in FAC 2005-098 (May, 2018), implementing FAR Case 2015-039.
  19. Nobody could criticize you for waiting to see if DPC withdraws the guidance memo. But if it is not withdrawn, I will be recommending that subcontractors and prime contractors go for it.
  20. I think the DPC memo would make an excellent exhibit if, in some wild circumstance, a CO should decide in a Final Decision that a prime contractor may not designate a supplier as being a NDC when the supplier meets the statutory criteria, and the contractor decides to appeal.
  21. I beg to disagree. The contractor could have hired a night watchman or security guard to watch over the sod. If the contractor had considered the risks (and most rarely do), it would have concluded that the cost of security while the fence was down was a trivial expense to mitigate its risks. The probability of occurrence may have been low, but the consequences were high. Thus, the risk should have been identified and mitigated. It was not. That is negligence in my book.
  22. "And some things that should not have been forgotten were lost. History became legend. Legend became myth." -- Galadriel, from The Fellowship of the Ring
  23. Poll would be better with a "no clue" voting option. As for me, I have no clue. N.S. Sherlock? That, I know.
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