Contracting News

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Department of Defense
House Dems Propose Acquisition Reforms

October 14, 2014

House Democrats, including Reps. Derek Kilmer (D-WA), Ron Barber (D-AZ), and Colleen Hanabusa (D-HI) released a report comprised of proposals for Department of Defense (DoD) acquisition reform. The proposals by the New Democrat Coalition drew praise from the likes of the Professional Services Council (PSC). The President of PSC, Stan Soloway, stated that “The coalition clearly put a lot of thought into the development of these proposals and we greatly appreciate their outreach to key stakeholders on this critical issue.” Read more on Law360 here.

OIG Report on DoD

October 14, 2014

The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) for the Department of Defense (DoD) released a report last Wednesday revealing a Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA) policy has failed to secure the best prices on defense contracts in government purchasing. The OIG’s investigation was conducted over eight sample sites covered by the DCMA policies and found the policy inadequately addresses Federal Acquisition Regulation requirements, and lacks sufficient case file documentation to for OIG to conduct adequate cost analysis. To read more on Law360, click here.

Better Buying Power 3.0

September 26, 2014

The Department of Defense recently rolled out the third “Better Buying Power” initiative, which started under Ashton Carter and continued throughout Frank Kendall’s tenure as Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics. The underlying theme of the Better Buying Power 3.0, which has yet to be formally published, remains consistent with previous directives that increased competition in DoD acquisition is still the ultimate goal. You can read the white paper here and insight from Law360 here.

DoD Requirements Aim to Increase Competition

August 26, 2014

Last week, Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition Frank Kendall issued a memo outlining new Department of Defense (DoD) guidelines to combat obstacles to competition. Based on the new guidelines, before issuing a sole-source contract, contracting officers must issue a Request for Information (RFI) that cites “Only One Responsible Source,” in order to explore other industry options that might meet the DoD’s needs. The results of this inquiry will be included in the Justification and Approval (J&A). Contracting officers must also follow up with companies who express interest in a solicitation but do not ultimately end up making an offer. They are to use this information to reduce barriers to competition in future solicitations. Another new requirement dictates that older J&As must be included in the approval package. If plans outlined in previous J&As to remove barriers to competition were not executed, the subsequent J&A will require approval at one level higher within DoD management than the previous J&A.

Read more here.

Small Business Administration
ASBL Weighs in on Proposed Safe Harbor

August 18, 2014

The American Small Business League (ASBL) recently weighed in on the proposed safe harbor for large businesses misrepresenting themselves as small. According to the ASBL, “Every year for a decade the SBA Office of the Inspector General has named the diversion of federal small business contracts to large businesses as the number one problem at the SBA. The SBA has consistently refused to adopt any policies to halt the rampant fraud.”

Read the story here.