After the recent small business subcontracting plan changes were implemented by the U.S. Small Business Administration (“SBA”) in its final rule at 78 Fed. Reg. 42391, dated July 16, 2013, many of our clients have asked us how the SBA’s new rules should be interpreted in light of the existing FAR small business subcontracting requirements. We believe that the FAR Councils are taking the right steps to harmonize the SBA’s requirements with the obligations the FAR imposes. However, we believe that there are several aspects of the proposed rule that could be amended to provide greater clarity and less burdensome outcomes for contractors administering subcontracting plans, particularly contractors that maintain commercial plans.
On May 28, 2015, the Defense Department, General Services Administration and National Aeronautics and Space Administration announced the Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council’s proposed rule to implement Executive Order 13673 “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces” (EO), dated July 31, 2014. Together with the proposed Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), the Department of Labor (DOL) published proposed guidance (collectively, “Proposed Rules”), defining many terms set forth in the EO and beginning to establish a framework of expectations. PilieroMazza addressed the requirements of the EO and identified prospective concerns in its Legal Advisor article "The Impact of the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order on Contract Procurement." While some of questions about the EO and its implementation have been answered in the Proposed FAR and DOL regulations, many of the concerns still remain. The deadline to submit comments has been extended to August 11, 2015.
We are writing to submit comments on the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (“SBA”) above-referenced proposed rule, issued May 1, 2015, 80 Fed. Reg. 24,846. Our firm represents small businesses, including women-owned and economically-disadvantaged women-owned small businesses (“WOSBs/EDWOSBs”), operating across the government contracting spectrum. Many of the WOSBs/EDWOSBs we represent and have talked to have been eagerly anticipating this rulemaking. The proposed rule places the SBA’s WOSB Program on equal footing with other SBA government contracting programs in providing for award of sole source contracts to WOSBs/EDWOSBs.
On February 5, 2015, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has issued a proposed rule to amend its regulations to implement provisions of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 and the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013, 80 Fed. Reg. 6618. Based on authorities provided in these two statutes, the proposed rule would establish a Government-wide mentor-protégé program for all small business concerns, amend current joint venture provisions and make additional changes to current size, 8(a) Office of Hearings and Appeals or HUBZone regulations, among other proposed changes. This memorandum provides our analysis of the proposed rules.
On December 29, 2014, the Small Business Administration (SBA) published its proposed rule to implement provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013 (NDAA) that change the way firms calculate compliance with the limitation on subcontracting rule on small business set-asides. SBA’s proposed rule also proposes changes dealing with the nonmanufacturing rule, including affiliation and joint ventures, among other topics. This memorandum provides our analysis of the new rules.