Weekly Update Newsletter – May 2015 #5

GOVERNMENT CONTRACTS 

DoD, GSA, and NASA Issue Proposed Rule to Amend FAR: Contractors Performing Private Security Functions 

The Department of Defense (DoD), General Services Administration (GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) issued a proposed rule to amend the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to remove the distinction between DoD and non-DoD agency areas of operation applicable for the use of the FAR clause “Contractors Performing Private Security Functions Outside the United States” as well as provide a definition of “full cooperation” within the clause, 80 Fed. Reg. 30202.  Comments on the proposed rule are due July 27, 2015.  

DoD, GSA, and NASA Issue Proposed Rule to Amend FAR: Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces 

The Department of Defense (DoD), General Services Administration (GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) issued a proposed rule to amend the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to implement the Executive Order “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces”, which is designed to improve contractor compliance with labor laws and increase efficiency and cost savings in federal contracting, 80 Fed. Reg. 30548. 

The Executive Order (E.O.) requires that prospective and existing contractors disclose certain labor violations and that contracting officers, in consultation with labor compliance advisors, consider the disclosures, including any mitigating circumstances, as part of their decision to award or extend a contract.  The E.O. directs agencies to include clauses in their contracts that require similar disclosures by certain subcontractors so their prime contractors can also consider labor violations when determining the responsibility of subcontractors. 

The E.O. further requires that processes be established to assist contractors and subcontractors to come into compliance with labor laws. To achieve paycheck transparency for workers, the E.O. requires contractors and subcontractors to provide individuals with information each pay period regarding how they are paid and to provide notice to those workers whom they treat as independent contractors. 

The E.O. also addresses arbitration of employee claims. This proposed rule, and proposed Guidance are being issued simultaneously by the Department of Labor (DOL), are intended to implement the E.O.’s requirements.  Comments on the proposed rule are due July 27, 2015. 

HUD Issues Proposed Rule to Amend HUDAR 

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued a proposed rule to amend the HUD Acquisition Regulation (HUDAR ) to implement miscellaneous changes necessary to update the HUDAR, 80 Fed. Reg. 30416.  The changes include a correction to the designation of Source Selection Authorities, limited delegation of Head of Contracting Activity authorities, incorporation of the HUDAR Matrix, addition of new clauses, certain administrative corrections, and incorporation of Alternates to various clauses to allow for electronic invoicing.  Comments on the proposed rule are due July 27, 2015.  

DoD Issues Final Rule to Amend DFARS: Approval Threshold for Time-and-Materials and Labor-Hour Contracts (DFARS Case 2014-D020) 

The Department of Defense (DoD) issued a final rule to amend the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) to establish the level of approval required for a determination and finding for time-and-materials and labor-hour contracts, or portions of contracts, exceeding $1 million, 80 Fed. Reg. 29980.  The final rule became effective May 26, 2015. 

DoD Issues Final Rule to Amend DFARS: Multiyear Contracts – Statutory References and Cancellation Ceiling Threshold (DFARS Case 2014-D019) 

The Department of Defense (DoD) issued a final rule to amend the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) to update the cancellation ceiling threshold for multiyear contracts and to correct statutory references, 80 Fed. Reg. 29981.  The final rule became effective May 26, 2015.  

DoD Issues Final Rule to Amend DFARS: Advancing Small Business Growth (DFARS Case 2014-D009) 

The Department of Defense (DoD) issued a final rule to amend the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) to clarify that entering into a contract award may cause a small business to eventually exceed the applicable small business size standard, 80 Fed. Reg. 30116.  The final rule became effective May 26, 2015.  

DoD Issues Final Rule to Amend DFARS: Past Performance Information Retrieval System – Statistical Reporting (PPIRS-SR) (DFARS Case 2014-D015) 

The Department of Defense (DoD) issued a final rule to amend the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) to require contracting officers to consider information in the Statistical Reporting module of the Past Performance Information Retrieval System when evaluating past performance of offerors under competitive solicitations for supplies using simplified acquisition procedures, 80 Fed. Reg. 30117.  The final rule became effective May 26, 2015.  

NOTICES 

Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled 

The Following Notices Were Issued: 

80 Fed. Reg. 29663, May 22, 2105, to add products (Easy Storage Box, 14 3/4” x 12” x 9 1/2”, White; Shaker, Salad Dressing/MR 342, Mandoline Slicer, Handheld; Neck Lanyard) and a service (Base Operations and Administrative Service, Marine Corps Base Hawaii (MCB), Camp Smith, Halawa, HI and Kaneohe Bay, HI) and delete products (Rain Gauge, 4”; Brassard, Military Police; Vest, Load Bearing Equipment) from the Procurement List.  The additions and deletions will become effective June 22, 2015.  

80 Fed. Reg. 29664, May 22, 2015, to add a product (Bag, Insulated, Thermal, Reusable) to the Procurement List.  Comments on the proposed addition are due June 22, 2015.