- Implementation of the Veterans First Contracting Program as a Result of the U.S. Supreme Court Decision
As you may recall, we sent out a newsletter a couple of months ago detailing some of the implications of the Supreme Court's decision in Kingdomware Technologies v. U.S. On July 25, 2016, the VA issued a new procurement policy memorandum titled "Implementation of the Veterans First Contracting Program as a Result of the U.S. Supreme Court Decision." This newly minted policy has far reaching implications.
Double Check Your SAM Registration Accuracy!
We urge all our clients to be thoughtful about not only their corporate documents (such as articles, operating agreements and bylaws), but to double check the accuracy of their DUNS and SAM registration accuracy. Government contracting officers rely on the information in these systems when making their decisions. The GAO has also upheld contracting related decisions by contracting officers that rely on this information – even if the information in the databases is out-of-date or inaccurate.
In the Matter of: Nationwide Value Computer, Inc. (Nationwide) (GAO File: B-411190, dated June 11, 2015) the GAO denied and dismissed a protest against an agency decision to exclude a small business from an award because the small business failed to certify itself as a small business in SAM.
Matter of GiaCare and MedTrust JV
[button link="http://whitcomblawpc.com/?p=4053" style="download" bg_color="#2727d6"]Matter of GiaCare[/button]
Protesting an agency’s award of the contract based on a flawed price realism analysis is normally an uphill battle. However, in the matter of GiaCare and MedTrust JV, the importance lied in the solicitation itself. As the GAO recounted in sustaining GiaMed’s protest, “an agency may provide, in the solicitation, for the use of a price realism analysis for the limited purpose of measuring an offeror’s understanding of the requirements or to assess the risk inherent in an offeror’s proposal.” However, the legal factors to consider include:
What are Meaningful Discussions?
When competing for government contracts small business clients are often confused about the difference between meaningful discussions and "clarifications."
The Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) differentiate between clarifications and discussions. A clarification occurs after a bid is submitted when the government has a “limited exchange” with an offeror. A clarification does not revise or change a submitted proposal. Meaningful discussions occurs when the government communicates with offerors to obtain information essential to deciding if a proposal is acceptable or to provide an offeror with an opportunity to revise or materially modify a proposal.
Kingdomware Technologies v. United States
The U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) was scheduled to hear oral arguments on Kingdomware Technologies v. United States on September 9 in a case involving whether the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) must prioritize service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses (“SDVOSBs”) when it buys supplies and services. The case has been withdrawn from the calendar and both sides are required to prepare briefs filed regarding whether the case is now "moot" as the source of the underlying controversy has ended because the disputed contracts in the case “have been fully performed….” If the case is moot it will be dismissed.
<em>By <a title="Dan McAuliffe" href="http://whitcomblawpc.mystagingwebsite.com/attorneys/dan-mcauliffe-government-contracting/" target="_blank">Dan McAuliffe</a></em>
Satisfying the Rule of Two
The Veteran's Administration (VA) is a frequent target for criticism. However, veterans themselves are responsible for some of that criticism because they fail to participate in programs designed to benefit them. For example in the case of VA procurements where veterans mistakenly assume there will be set-asides for veteran owned businesses. The VA will only set aside procurements for veterans if there are veteran businesses that are registered to compete for these procurement opportunities and the contracting officer can satisfy the rule of two requirement using normal market research. However, if the VA, or other federal agencies, seek veteran-business sources and find none the federal government is under NO obligation to set aside procurements.
Fed-Bids Determination of Non-Responsibility
Kevin Barnes, the service connected veteran owner of Latvian Connections, filed a pro se pre-award bid protest with the GAO against FedBid, Inc. FedBid, was acting as an agent for the Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, in a reverse auction platform and had suspended Latvian, because Latvian had in FedBid’s terms “taken actions to repeatedly and purposely interfere with FedBid’s business relationships. “ FedBid continued:
Topics: SBA Bid Protest, Bid Protests, Government Procurement, sdvosb, bid protest, Bid Protest attorney, bid protest attorneys, bid protest lawyer, finding of non-responsibility, GAO bid protest, GAO bid protests, government contracting, government contracts attorney, government procurement law
How did fresh fruits and vegetables become the ingredients of a federal bid protest?
Raymond Express International, LLC, V. The United States
Pre-award federal bid protest
Plaintiff Raymond Express Int'l, LLC (REI) filed a pre-award federal bid protest on December 8, 2014 and asked the court to enter the following four questions regarding solicitation, which had been amended six times. As anecdotally, three of the amendments were the result of protest previously filed by REI at the agency and GAO level. The solicitation was for a bid to provide fresh fruit and vegetables to DoD commissaries in South Korea, Japan, and Guam. The bid protest for injunctive and declaratory relief was filed under an expedited schedule and oral argument was heard on January 26, 2015. U.S. Court of Federal Claims Court Senior Judge Lynn Bush ruled that the solicitation did not violate procurement laws or regulations and was not arbitrary or capricious and granted defendant's motion for judgment on the administrative record.
Topics: Bid Protests, Government Procurement, bid protest, Bid Protest attorney, bid protest attorneys, bid protest lawyer, bid protest lawyers, GAO attorney, GAO bid protest, government accountability office, government contracting, government contracts attorney, government procurement law, US Court of Federal Claims