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and Construction Matters Since 1893.
Oles Morrison

Failure to Debar? OECD Foreign Bribery Report Finds Only 2 Debarments Out of 427 Foreign Bribery Cases

By on January 15, 2015 | Posted in Suspension and Debarment

This month I wanted share an article I recently found on the OECD Foreign Bribery Report, written by Richard Bistrong.  Mr. Bistrong is a former international sales executive who himself was convicted of bribery and debarred, and Mr. Bistrong spent 14 ½  months in prison.  Prior to his conviction, Mr. […]

Alaska Native Corporation Loses Bid Protest of Award to AbilityOne Contractor

By on January 13, 2015 | Posted in Bid Protests

Last month, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims denied a post-award bid protest of a contract set aside by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) for AbilityOne Program contractors.  The court found the government correctly considered the impact of the award on the incumbent contractor, an Alaska Native Corporation (ANC), and […]

GAO Rejects Challenge to NASA’s Space Shuttle Services Contracts with Boeing and SpaceX

By on January 9, 2015 | Posted in Legislative and Regulatory Developments

  Back in September 2014, NASA awarded contracts to Boeing and SpaceX to provide Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (aka space shuttle services) to transport astronauts to/from the International Space Station by 2017.  Subsequently, Sierra Nevada, who submitted a proposal but was not awarded a contract, filed a protest at GAO challenging the […]

Top Three Reasons Why Firms are Denied “Veterans First” SDVOSB and VOSB Verification

By on January 8, 2015 | Posted in Small Business

The Veteran’s Administration (VA) administers the “Veterans First” Service-Disabled-Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) and Veteran-Owned Small Business (VOSB) verification program. The VA’s program requires companies to apply for verification through the VA’s Center for Verification and Evaluation (CVE) and to re-certify every two years. The CVE’s verification process is challenging and […]

How the AbilityOne Program Provides Federal Contracting Jobs to Individuals with Disabilities

By on January 7, 2015 | Posted in Procurement Issues

The National Industrial Recovery Act, part of the New Deal policies in 1934, allowed businesses employing individuals with disabilities to pay less than minimum wage to their disabled workers. This “sub-minimum” wage policy was buttressed by the 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act which allows employers to apply for Section 14(c) […]

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 […]