GSA Seeks Feedback on Potential Changes to Polaris Joint Ventures

On May 13, 2022, the General Services Administration (GSA) published draft proposed changes to the Polaris Government-Wide Acquisition Contract (GWAC). Specifically, the agency is proposing to revise Section L.5.1.3.1 of the request for proposals (RFP), dealing with joint ventures, after reviewing industry feedback and engaging with the Small Business Administration (SBA). GSA emphasized that the language is in draft form and is subject to change. Most importantly, members of the small business information technology community are encouraged to provide feedback to Polaris@gsa.gov by . . . Read More

SBA Requests Comments on Potential Change in Size Standard for Resellers

On April 26, 2022, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) issued a proposed rule regarding its small business size standards for federal contractors in manufacturing and other industries with employee-based size standards. Small business federal contractors should take note of the proposed changes and consider whether to address this proposal by submitting a public comment by the June 27 deadline. SBA’s proposals include potential increases in the size standards for 150 industries. These include the size standard for surgical appliance and supplies manufacturing . . . Read More

GSA Will Expand Joint Ventures’ Eligibility to Secure GSA Schedule Contracts Beyond Information Technology

By the end of May, the General Services Administration (GSA) will issue a Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) modification that will open all special item numbers to the GSA Springboard program. As a result, joint ventures will be able to secure all Special Item Numbers (SINs) under the consolidated MAS contracts, not just under IT SINs. With this good news in mind, contractors should consider whether to use their joint ventures to apply for MAS contracts that were formerly unavailable. The Springboard program . . . Read More

Buy American Act Final Rule Strengthens Domestic Sourcing Requirements

The Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council (FAR Council) published a final rule on March 7 that bolsters domestic sourcing requirements in federal procurement under the Buy American Act (BAA). This rule makes several significant changes to limit government contractors’ reliance on foreign products and component parts. Even though the final rule does not take effect until October 25, 2022, government contractors should be preparing for it now. PilieroMazza will discuss the new rule in a webinar on the BAA on April 27. Soon after . . . Read More

ESOPs Have Opportunity to Shape DOD Pilot Program on Sole Source Follow-On Contracts

In late 2021, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022 (FY 2022 NDAA) included a first-of-its-kind provision that authorized a pilot program through which businesses that are owned 100% by an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) could qualify for sole source awards on a follow-on contract. Of course, the devil is in the details, and this potentially historic provision merely authorized the program but included no details. The opportunity to fill in those details has arrived. The Department of Defense (DOD) recently announced that companies can . . . Read More

GSA Pauses Polaris RFPs

GSA’s Polaris RFPs are on pause after the agency received comments regarding the evaluation of joint ventures. GSA is now assessing whether changes are required to the RFPs and is temporarily pausing the RFPs until further notice. WOSBs, SDVOSBs, and HUBZone IT service providers should pause proposal activities until the assessment is completed. This assessment may be an indication that GSA is carefully considering aspects of Polaris RFPs that will hopefully be beneficial to both large and small contractors and improve . . . Read More

SBA Increases Its Size Standards, Opening More Opportunities for Winning Government Contracts

The long-awaited increase to size standards by the Small Business Administration (SBA) has arrived. On March 31, 2022, SBA issued four final rules that increase the small business size standards for a number of industries. As a result, many businesses will gain eligibility for federal small business assistance programs or retain eligibility for a longer period. These programs include SBA’s business loan programs, Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, and federal procurement programs that provide targeted, set-aside opportunities for small . . . Read More

PilieroMazza Win in Game-Changing Randolph-Sheppard Decision Could Increase Food Service Attendant Contract Awards to Federal Contractors

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a notable decision on March 24, 2022, in a protest filed by PilieroMazza attorneys Katie Burrows and Matt Feinberg on behalf of J.W. Mills Management, LLC (J.W. Mills), B-420416. The decision clarifies the scope of the Randolph-Sheppard Act (RSA) and could lead to new contract award opportunities for federal contractors in the food service attendant, mess attendant, and dining facility attendant industry. Federal contractors operating in the food service attendant space should consider how this . . . Read More

HUBZone Principal Office Flexibility Ends April 1

The Small Business Administration’s HUBZone office will soon end the principal office flexibility it introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic. Starting April 1, 2022, firms will no longer be able to count employees who spend most of their time working at home as a principal office employee. HUBZone firms need to be mindful of this as they prepare for their 2022 recertification and manage their HUBZone eligibility going forward. Below, we review the changes announced by SBA and offer our recommendations for dealing . . . Read More

GSA Releases Polaris Q&A Indicating Key Changes in Upcoming RFPs

GSA recently released a  Q&A  in anticipation of the first two Polaris Requests for Proposals (RFPs). GSA anticipates the RFPs for Small Businesses and Women-Owned Small Businesses will be released soon, while those for the Historically Underutilized Business Zones Small Business (HUBZone) and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) pools will be released between July 1, 2022, and September 30, 2022. Some of the answers in the Q&A clarify what offerors should expect, while others continue to create ambiguity. In this client alert, . . . Read More