Government Relations Services
Having just presented on data rights issues to a number of government contracting officers and procurement professionals, as well as private sector contract management personnel, during the 2017 National Contract Management Association World Congress, it became clear that many people are confused (and rightly so) about what is happening with regard to the segregation and reintegration rules.
Nearly every federal agency is required to follow the Federal Acquisition Regulation (“FAR”). However, one exception is the Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”), which is not required to comply with the FAR but rather has its own policies and procedures, called the Acquisition Management System (“AMS”). As a result, unlike most bid protests, which may be brought either at the agency-level, Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) or the Court of Federal Claims (“COFC”), protests against Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”) contract awards (or solicitations) must be filed with the Office of Dispute Resolution for Acquisition (“ODRA”).
Despite the change in Administration, the Government’s efforts to implement category management continue and are about to have a major impact in how the Government contracts for package delivery services. What is category management? Essentially, it is a Government initiative to reduce contract duplication to save money on common goods and services that the Government purchases through the federal procurement system and is also called strategic sourcing.
The U.S. Senate has proposed a provision in the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act that, if adopted, would raise the stakes for larger firms in filing bid protests. The provision would apply to protests against DoD procurements to the GAO. If GAO denies all elements of such protests, the protesting company would be required to pay to DoD the costs the government incurs for processing the protest at the GAO and DoD.
H.R. 3294, the HUBZone Unification and Business Stability Act of 2017, proposes several changes to the HUBZone program that are intended to reduce certification timelines, stabilize the program, and collect and report on performance metrics designed to measure the success of the HUBZone program. While this is a step in the right direction, the proposed changes do not go far enough to provide a meaningful impact to the deficiencies in the program.