If you have questions concerning the content below, please visit this link.
Upcoming Events: Register to attend PilieroMazza’s upcoming events here.
Recent Thought Leadership: Check out PilieroMazza’s recent client alerts and blogs here.
GovCon Live! Podcast: Listen to PilieroMazza’s Podcast Series “Commercial Businesses New to Government Contracting” here.
Takeaways from Biden Administration’s Initiative to Promote Equal Opportunity in Federally Funded Infrastructure Projects, 03.31.23, Jessica duHoffmann, Sara Strosser, and Annie Hudgins
On March 14, 2023, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced the launch of the “Mega Construction Project Program” initiative, which is designed to promote equal opportunity and expand the workforce in construction trades involved with large federally funded projects. The Mega Construction Project Program will focus DOL’s efforts to bring the public and private sectors together on a select group of projects to provide a diverse pool of qualified workers access to jobs in construction trades. Projects eligible for designation under the Mega Construction Project Program include large construction projects valued at $35 Million or more, that receive federal funding, and last more than one year. For federal construction contractors interested in becoming eligible for the Mega Construction Project Program, it is important that you understand the Program’s compliance requirements. Read more here.
Financial Capital, Human Capital Will Be at a Premium in Indian Country in 2023, 03.29.23, Nichole Atallah
PilieroMazza’s Nichole Atallah, a partner in the Firm’s Labor & Employment Group, is featured in the article “Financial Capital, Human Capital Will Be at a Premium in Indian Country in 2023,” originally published in the Summer 2023 edition of NC Magazine. Nichole is joined by Karla Bylund, owner of Soaring Bird Solutions. Read more here.
OSHA Releases 2022 Injury and Illness Data
The Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published 2022 injury and illness data based on reports by more than 300,000 establishments. The Injury Tracking Application data is part of OSHA’s electronic recordkeeping requirements for certain employers who were required to submit OSHA Form 300A information from January 2 to March 2, 2023. Read more here.
Upcoming Labor & Employment Presentations
Forming a Joint Venture? SBA Stresses Importance of Complying with State Law, 03.29.23, Sam Finnerty
As PilieroMazza previously highlighted, contractors wishing to pursue set-aside work through small business joint ventures (JVs) must comply with the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) JV regulations, which require certain JVs to have detailed and specific JV agreements (JVAs). A recent case from SBA’s Office of Hearing and Appeals (OHA) highlights just how important it is that small business JVs also comply with applicable state laws. Contractors should be aware that failing to comply with state laws can cause a small business JV to be ineligible for a contract award. Read more here.
SAM Minor Name and Address Changes Fix Coming Soon
The General Services Administration (GSA) announced that it will launch a robomod in April to stop Name Change/Novation and/or Address Change modifications from appearing if there are slight discrepancies between an entity’s name or address in GSA’s Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) systems and the System for Award Management (SAM). Currently, any discrepancy triggers a Name Change/Novation and/or Address Change modification that the contractor and contracting officer must resolve. Under the new system, the name and address will simply transfer over from SAM to the MAS system. GSA recommends contractors correct any issues with their SAM registration prior to the April release of the robomod. Read more here.
Statement by SBA Administrator Guzman on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Action to Increase Transparency on Small Business Lending
Small Business Administration Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman issued a statement on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) finalizing Section 1071, a rule that aims to increase transparency in small business lending, promote economic development, and combat unlawful discrimination. Read more here.
White House Pushes New Rules for Mid-Sized Banks Without Congress
The Biden Administration urged banking authorities to tighten regulation of mid-sized banks, which it said could be pushed through without support from a split Congress. Banks with between $100 billion and $250 billion in assets should hold more liquid assets, increase their capital, submit to regular stress tests and write “living wills” that detail how they can be wound down, the White House said. The White House’s push for more regulation comes just weeks after the collapse of U.S. lenders Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank triggered market turmoil. Read more here. A related White House fact sheet is available here.
GSA, DOD Sign MOU to Bring More Environmental Innovators to Federal Marketplace
The General Services Administration (GSA) signed a memorandum of understanding with the Department of Defense (DOD) to help expedite bringing environmental innovations into the federal marketplace. Under the agreement, GSA will use DOD’s Sustainable Technology Evaluation and Demonstration Program information on product performance and pricing to streamline the acquisition process and make sustainable technology alternatives more readily available to federal agencies. Read more here.
Defense Production Act Title III Presidential Determination for Printed Circuit Boards and Advanced Packaging Production Capability
President Biden signed a presidential determination (PD) authorizing the use of Defense Production Act to support the nation’s domestic Printed Circuit Boards (PrCB) and Advanced Packaging industrial base. The PD allows the Department of Defense to utilize its Defense Production Act Title III authorities to invest in advanced microelectronics capacity and ensure the production of state-of-the-art integrated circuits in the United States. PrCBs are critical components in all electronics used in the national defense, economic, environmental, energy, and healthcare management sectors. Read more here.
GSA Makes a Case for Login.gov on Capitol Hill After Scathing Report
After a report outlined discrepancies in Login.gov’s identity proofing standards, lawmakers peppered General Services Administration (GSA) officials with questions about what they are doing to ensure the missteps haven’t enabled fraudsters. The inspector general report detailed how GSA officials misrepresented the level of identity proofing standards met by the government-run single sign-on service, Login.gov, subsequently billing agencies millions as a result. Read more here.
Governmentwide Commercial Purchase Card Prohibited Purchases
Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) subpart 213.3 provides direction for authorizing, establishing, and operating Governmentwide Commercial Purchase Card (GPC) programs, and directs personnel to Reference 1 for additional policy and guidance. Consistent with the requirements of Reference 2, effective April 1, 2023, the Department of Defense (DOD) published a memorandum that adds the covered items identified in DFARS 252.223-7998, Prohibition on Procurement of Certain Items Containing Perfluorooctane Sulfonate or Perfluorooctanoic Acid, to the GPC prohibited purchases list at Reference 1, Section A.1.2.4. This policy applies to GPC open-market micro-purchases and implements section 333 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 that prohibits DOD from procuring any covered items containing Perfluorooctane Sulfonate or Perfluorooctanoic Acid effective April 1, 2023. Read more here.
FAR: Credit for Lower-Tier Small Business Subcontracting
The Department of Defense, General Services Administration, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration are withdrawing a proposed rule that was published on June 6, 2019, at 84 FR 30071. It proposed to revise the Federal Acquisition Regulation to implement Section 1614 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014, which addressed credit for lower-tier small business subcontracting. The decision not to proceed with a final rule was made because the underlying statute has been changed. Read more here.
GSA Publishes Guidance for Federal Agencies to Buy Secure 5G
The General Services Administration (GSA) published plain-language guidance to help government agencies buy fifth generation (5G) wireless technology. GSA’s Acquisition Guidance for Procuring 5G Technology supports an ongoing, multi-agency effort to document and share best practices for optimal 5G deployments. Read more here.
Upcoming Government Contracts Presentations
NIST Debuts Trustworthy and Responsible AI Resource Center
The new Trustworthy & Responsible Artificial Intelligence Resource Center built by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) will now serve as a repository for much of the current federal guidance on AI, featuring easy access to previously issued materials to help public and private entities alike create responsible AI systems. The new AI Resource Center builds upon NIST’s AI Resource Management Framework and AI Playbook to support industry best practices in researching and developing socially responsible AI and machine learning systems absent overarching federal law. Read more here.
White House Aims to Issue Cyber Strategy Implementation Plan by June
The White House is aiming to issue the implementation plan for a new national cyber strategy in early summer, while officials in the coming weeks will seek public comment on how to coordinate a growing patchwork of cybersecurity regulations across critical infrastructure sectors. Specifically, Robert Knake, the acting principal deputy national cyber director, said the White House is “targeting June” to release the public version of the national cyber strategy’s implementation plan. Read more here.
President Biden Signs Executive Order to Prohibit U.S. Government Use of Commercial Spyware that Poses Risks to National Security
President Biden signed an Executive Order that prohibits, for the first time, operational use by the United States Government of commercial spyware that poses risks to national security or has been misused by foreign actors to enable human rights abuses around the world. In furtherance of President Biden’s National Security Strategy, the Executive Order seeks to demonstrate the United States’ leadership in, and commitment to, advancing technology for democracy, including by countering the misuse of commercial spyware and other surveillance technology. This Executive Order would also serve as a foundation to deepen international cooperation to promote responsible use of surveillance technology, counter the proliferation and misuse of such technology, and spur industry reform. Read more here.
Upcoming Cybersecurity & Data Privacy Presentations