Cy Alba, a partner in PilieroMazza’s Government Contracts Group, recently discussed the re-release of the Polaris request for proposals (RFP) with Federal News Network.

Potentially worth tens of billions of dollars, the small business governmentwide acquisition contract for IT services has drawn close attention from government contractors, with seemingly endless updates to the RFP. After a nearly two-month pause on bid submissions, the General Services Administration (GSA) re-released the solicitation on June 30, 2022, with updated relevant experience requirements.

Among other changes, GSA now is requiring mentees to provide at least one example of relevant experience and limits mentors to only three examples.

“It seems like GSA is just following the NITAAC book with the protégé experience requirements—i.e., requiring one experience example from the protégé to show some experience. This is what I thought they were going to do,” said Alba.

“The Small Business Administration regulations do not provide direct guidance on this question and so it does seem like agencies have some level of discretion in making the determination about how much experience the protégé would need to show. That said, they cannot discriminate against protégés as that would violate SBA regulations. Unfortunately, the law is not clear on where that boundary lies and, if protested, it will be up to GAO or the Court of Federal Claims to make that determination. This is consistent with other compromises on the issue though, like CIO-SP4.”

“I’m sure some of the experience requirements, like requiring at least six months of performance, or how IDIQ contract value is calculated, may bring the ire of some small businesses. But I am not sure those requirements are legally objectionable,” Alba said.

Visit this link for the full article. Small businesses have until August 10, 2022, to submit their bids.

If you have questions about the Polaris RFP, please contact Cy Alba or a member of PilieroMazza’s Government Contracts Group.