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Oles Morrison

Changes Impacting Contractors in the FY 2015 National Defense Authorization Act

By on December 19, 2014 | Posted in Legislative and Regulatory Developments

On December 12, 2014, Congress passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2015.  The $585 billion bill funds the Pentagon’s activities in FY 2015.  Within this massive bill, there are number of items of interest to government contractors, including: Design Build Contracting.  Section 814 gives contracting officers more authority to […]

OFCCP Extends Equal Protection Rights Prohibiting Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

By on December 17, 2014 | Posted in Labor

On December 9, 2014, the U.S Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) published a final rule implementing Executive Order (EO) 13672 effectively amending EO 11246, which previously only prohibited discrimination by federal contractors and subcontractors on the bases of race, color, religion, sex, and national origin.  […]

Debarment Heads North of the Border

By on December 4, 2014 | Posted in Suspension and Debarment

In the not so very distant past, companies mainly needed to worry about exclusion from public contracting in the United States.  However, the exclusion trend has caught on internationally.  Recently, Canada has revised their exclusion policies to require companies to certify that neither the company nor its affiliates have committed a […]

VA Sanctioned for Discovery Abuses at the Civilian Board of Contract Appeals

By on November 24, 2014 | Posted in

In most litigation, the plaintiff and the defendant are equally susceptible to being sanctioned by the court for bad or dilatory behavior. However, government contracts litigation is not most litigation. In government contracts litigation (claims or protests), the contractor is more susceptible to being sanctioned than the government. But the government is […]

Department of Defense Solicits Ideas for Flying Aircraft Carriers

By on November 21, 2014 | Posted in

Could a new generation of aircraft carriers change how future conflicts are fought from the sky? The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) aims to find out. This month, DARPA, the agency charged with developing new military technologies for the Department of Defense, issued a Request for Information (RFI) for “Distributed Airborne Capabilities,” or in other words […]

GAO Issues Annual Report to Congress – Shows Sharp Drop in Bid Protest “Sustain Rate,” But “Effectiveness Rate” Remains Unchanged

By on November 19, 2014 | Posted in Bid Protests

Today, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued its annual report bid protest report to congress. The report shows a sharp decline in the rate of protests sustained by GAO. For several years the “sustain rate” at GAO had consistently hovered between 16% and 19%. Today’s report shows the “sustain […]

Proposed Bill Would Give “Preferential Points” to Federal Contractors for Good Labor Practices – Could Lead to Tug O’ War with Incoming “Pro-Contractor” Congress

By on | Posted in Labor

As Congress reconvenes it will consider a new bill that would direct federal agencies to give preferential points in the bidding process to federal government contractors based on their labor practices. The bill, proposed by Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.), would give points to companies that pay their employees a […]

Pigs Do Fly: Bid Protest Challenging an Affirmative Determination of Responsibility is Sustained by GAO

By on October 30, 2014 | Posted in Bid Protests

In the world of GAO post-award bid protests, there are certain arguments that are particularly prevalent amongst sustained protests (such as the failure to follow the solicitation evaluation criteria, inadequate documentation of the source selection decision,  unequal treatment of offerors, and unreasonable price or cost evaluation), and there are other arguments that while less prevalent […]

DOL Issues Final Rule Establishing $10.10/hour as Minimum Wage for Federal Contractors

By on October 28, 2014 | Posted in Labor

This month, the United States Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued a Final Rule establishing a minimum wage of $10.10 per hour for certain federal contractors beginning January 1, 2015. The rule implements Executive Order 13658 signed by President Obama earlier this year. The Final Rule applies to: Procurement contracts for […]

Nearly 1,650 Additional Firms to Become Eligible for Small Business Set-Asides under SBA’s Proposed Size Standard Revisions

By on October 23, 2014 | Posted in Legislative and Regulatory Developments

Over the past two months the U.S. Small Business Administration (“SBA”) has published two proposed rules to revise small business size standards in the North American Industry Classification System (“NAICS”).  If the proposed rules are adopted, nearly 1,650 additional firms will become eligible for small business contracting programs and SBA small business loans. […]

Court of Federal Claims Sanctions EPA for Backdating Document During Bid Protest

By on October 7, 2014 | Posted in Bid Protests

In a rare move, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims (COFC) imposed sanctions on the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its conduct during the bid protest of Coastal Environmental Group, Inc. v. United States.  While the EPA ultimately prevailed on the merits of the protest, the EPA’s conduct was so egregious […]

ASBCA Dismisses Subcontractor’s Appeal that wasn’t Sponsored by Prime Contractor

By on October 2, 2014 | Posted in Claims and Disputes

When subcontractor claims arise on a federal contract, it is not uncommon for the prime to then assert those claims as pass-through claims against the government.  In such circumstances, it is important for subcontractors to remember that while they have rights to proceed against the prime contractor for those claims, […]

Common Bid Protest Mistakes: Extension of the Due Date for Comments Does Not Toll Timeliness Requirements for Asserting Supplemental Protest Grounds

By on September 24, 2014 | Posted in Bid Protests

This is the first in a series of posts highlighting common mistakes made (by protestors) in bid protests at GAO.  Today’s post discusses a mistake related to the deadline for filing supplemental protests when an extension is granted for filing comments on the agency report.  This mistake is made by […]