New Buy American Act Executive Order Ups the Ante on Domestic Preferences – What Construction Contractors Should Know
As anticipated, the Trump Administration has continued to build on its emphasis for domestic preference requirements on projects that are subject to the Buy American Act – both for projects that are directly funded by the federal government, or pursuant to the Administration’s January 31, 2019 Executive Order, “Strengthening Buy American Preferences for Infrastructure Projects,” potentially also to projects that are indirectly funded by the government. The Administration’s latest efforts in this area have come in the form of a July 15, 2019 Executive Order, “Maximizing Use of American-Made, Goods, Products, and Materials.” While this most recent Executive Order on this subject contains a number of proposed changes, which will need to be implemented through regulations, it proposes two changes that may have significant ramifications for the construction industry. This alert summarizes the key considerations for construction contractors.
Cybersecurity compliance has become an increasingly trending and important area for government review, especially by the Department of Defense (DoD), placing an emphasis on defense contractors and the government alike in ensuring that sensitive government data residing on nongovernment systems are protected from third party intrusion and disclosure. Indeed, recent cases in False Claims Act litigation have demonstrated just how serious a contractor’s noncompliance with cybersecurity requirements can be. For example, in U.S. ex rel. Markus v. Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, Inc., the court, in denying the defendant’s motion to dismiss, allowed a non-intervened qui tam complaint to proceed, where the relator alleged that the defendant’s systemic noncompliance with contractual cybersecurity standards resulted in the submission of false claims that the relator claimed warranted the imposition of treble damages that could far exceed the value of the contracts themselves. 2019 WL 2024595 (E.D. Cal. May 8, 2019). Notably, the court held that the relator had sufficiently pled violations of the False Claims Act even though, as the defendant argued, the regulations in question had recently been issued, frequently amended, and some agency guidance could reasonably be construed as relaxing any requirements. Id.
The Section 809 Panel, which is tasked with developing and providing recommendations to improve and enhance the efficiency of the Department of Defense procurement system, issued the third volume of its report and recommendations Jan. 15, 2019. Among the numerous recommendations for streamlining DoD acquisitions, several of which relate to […]
While domestic preference requirements in federal procurements, namely the Buy America and Buy American Acts, are not new their increased emphasis are. As has been well publicized, a central focus of the Trump Administration has been to encourage and increase the use of domestically sourced products and materials in connection […]
By David Y. Yang on January 24, 2019 | Posted in
The partial government shutdown is now the longest running shutdown in history and there is no clear end in sight. Some 800,000 federal employees have been affected by the shutdown. They have either been furloughed, or even if they are working, they are going without pay. However, although affected federal […]
One of the more significant developments in 2018 for both small business primes and large companies with small business subcontractors was the passage of the Small Business Runway Extension Act (the “Act”), which was signed into law December 17, 2018. The Act, in amending the Small Business Act, increases the […]
By David Y. Yang on December 12, 2018 | Posted in
As yet another government shutdown looms on the horizon, contractors must again prepare for the ramifications of a shutdown. At present, the President does not look likely to sign a budget bill unless Congress includes significant appropriations for a border wall which also does not appear likely. If no compromise […]
It is no secret that the False Claims Act (“FCA”) is the government’s primary anti-fraud tool and that recoveries under the statute have hit record highs in recent years. For example, since 1987, FCA recoveries have totaled $56 billion with no single year since 2010 falling below $3 billion. Moreover, most of […]
In its annual report to Congress, the Defense Contract Audit Agency (“DCAA”) released impressive metrics about its progress during the 2017 fiscal year. For many years, DCAA has struggled to manage a substantial number of backlogged incurred cost audits—most of which extended back several years, including some which extended back […]
New Rule, Same Requirements? – The Department of Defense’s New Rule on Voluntary Disclosures of Defective Pricing Matters
The Department of Defense (“DoD”) recently issued a final rule regarding contractor disclosures of defective pricing issues on DoD contracts, which can arise where the contractor’s certified cost or pricing data is inaccurate, incomplete or is not current. In such cases, these errors and omissions can result in significant contract […]