As the U.S. Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) recently explained, “[a]n impaired objectivity [organizational conflict of interest] OCI . . . arises [under FAR subpart 9.5] when a firm’s ability to render impartial advice to the government would be undermined by the firm’s competing interests. The concern in such impaired objectivity situations is that a firm’s ability to render impartial advice to the government will be undermined by its relationship to the product or service being evaluated.” (citations omitted). Continue reading Protest Sustained In Impaired Objectivity OCI Case Involving Development Of VA Mobile Apps
On December 7, 2015, the FAR Council issued a new interim rule requiring federal contractors covered by the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act (“VEVRAA”) to file VETS 4212 forms instead of the old VETS 100 or VETS 100A forms. The interim rule takes effect on February 26, 2016 and applies to all federal contracts and contract modifications issued after that date.
In September 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor rewrote the VEVRAA compliance requirements when it rescinded 41 C.F.R. Part 61-250 and replaced it with the new 41 C.F.R. Part 61-300. Among the changes in the new Part 61-300 was to replace the old VETS 100 and VETS 100A forms with a new VETS 4212 form.
The FAR Council’s recent interim rule updates the FAR (particularly Subparts 22.13 and Part 52) to reflect the new VEVRAA compliance requirements adopted by the Department of Labor back in 2014. Of particular note, the interim rule states:
Except for contracts for commercial items or contracts that do not exceed the simplified acquisition threshold, contracting officers must not obligate or expend funds appropriate for the agency for a fiscal year to enter into a contract for the procurement of personal property and nonpersonal services (including construction) with a contractor that has not submitted the required annual VETS-4212, Federal Contractor Veterans’ Employment Report (VETS -4242 Report), with respect to the preceding fiscal year if the contractor was subject to the reporting requirements of 38 U.S.C. 4212(d) for that fiscal year.
80 Fed. Reg. 75910 (amended and interim 48 C.F.R. 22.1302(b)).
So, if you haven’t already made the switch and your company is required to comply with VEVRAA, be sure to file the required VETS-4242 form this year.