Government Acquisition Questions And Answers

What are the differences between GSA Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contracts, Government wide acquisition contracts (GWACs), and Multi-agency contracts (MACs)?

GSA Multiple Award Schedule (MAS):
These Contracts, also known as Federal Supply Schedule contracts, are indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contracts available to all federal agencies worldwide. GSA awards and administers MAS contracts pursuant to section 201 of the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949, as amended. Under the MAS Program, GSA enters into government wide contracts with commercial firms to provide over 4 million commercial services and products. Agencies place orders directly with MAS contractors. Interagency agreements are not required to use MAS contracts. The Economy Act does not apply to orders placed against MAS contracts.

Government wide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs)

These are task order or delivery order contracts for information technology established by one agency for government wide use. Each GWAC is operated by an executive agent that only the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) designates pursuant to section 5112(e) of the Clinger-Cohen Act. The Economy Act does not apply to orders under GWACs.

Multi-agency Contracts (MACs)

These are task order or delivery order contracts established by one agency for use by other government agencies to obtain a variety of supplies and services. The Economy Act (Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Subpart 17.5) applies to orders placed under MACs, with the exception of MACs for information technology that are established pursuant to the Clinger-Cohen Act.

When ordering under a BPA or a department-wide contracts, is the procurement officer required to obtain quotes from other vendors (i.e., provide Fair Opportunity)?

If you are placing an order under a multiple award BPA or Department-wide contract (i.e., multiple awards were made from a single solicitation) then you must provide the awardees a fair opportunity to be considered for the order, in accordance with the procedures outlined in the BPA or Department-wide contract. If the BPA or Department-wide contract was a single award, then the ordering activity can simply place the order with the contractor with whom the BPA or Department-wide contract was established.

When ordering under a BPA or a department-wide contract, is the procurement officer required to obtain quotes from other vendors (i.e., provide Fair Opportunity)?

If the procurement officer is placing an order under a multiple award BPA or Department-wide contract (i.e., multiple awards were made from a single solicitation) then the procurement officer must provide the awardees a fair opportunity to be considered for the order, in accordance with the procedures outlined in the BPA or Department-wide contract. If the BPA or Department-wide contract was a single award, then the ordering activity can simply place the order with the contractor with whom the BPA or Department-wide contract was established.

Small Business Information

Where can you go to see if a vendor is a small business? CCR?

The Online Representations and Certifications Application (ORCA) website (http://orca.bpn.gov) is where acquisition personnel are required to go to view the vendors small business program representations. CCR should not be used for this purpose.

If I purchase on behalf of another agency who gets the small business goaling credit?

The funding agency, i.e., the organization that has provided the funds, would get the small business goaling credit. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) uses the information entered into FPDS-NG, including the funding agency information, to derive the small business goaling credit. If you want more information about the small business goaling program contact your bureau Business Utilization Development Specialist (BUDS), a director of contacts can be found at the DOI Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization website www.doi.gov/osdbu.

Federal Procurement Data System-Next Generation (FPDS-NG)

Can I register on the FPDS-NG web site for a user id?

No. Currently all DOI employees wishing to gain access to FPDS-NG must go through their bureau IDEAS system administrator.

Can anyone enter information in FPDS-NG?

According to Department of the Interior Acquisition Policy Release (DIAPR) 2004-7, Ensuring Accurate Procurement Data Reporting to the FPDS-NG, "Reporting of all actions must be done by the responsible Contracting Officer, Contract Specialist or Purchasing Agent, or other personnel who are fully trained in all subjects involved in the reporting process and able to efficiently and accurately determine the correct response to all data issues. Where such training is not yet completed, the reporting individual will be closely supervised by a fully-trained procurement official."

It should be noted that the FPDS-NG action is part of the official contract record and as such, the Contracting Officer, is individual responsible for reviewing and approving the information entered. This process is also in keeping with A-123 guidelines on accountability.

Central Contractor Registration (CCR)

I am awarding contract to a foreign vendor which means they don’t have to be registered in CCR, right?

No, that is not correct. Per FAR 4.11, all prospective contractors are required to be registered in CCR prior to award. One of the exemptions from this requirement, listed at FAR 4.1102, is for awards made to foreign vendors for work performed outside the United States, if it is impractical to obtain CCR registration. Awarding to a foreign vendor alone does not mean the exemption automatically applies. The vendor must also be performing the work under your award outside of the U.S. AND it must be impractical to obtain CCR registration. All three conditions must exist for the exemption to apply.

A vendor that was going to get an awarded contract to is not registered in CCR and does not wish to do so, can they get an awarded contract?

See FAR 4.1103(b) which states that once it has been determined that none of the exceptions to the CCR registration requirements apply (see FAR 4.1102), the contracting officer shall— (1) If the needs of the requiring activity allow for a delay, make award after the apparently successful offeror has registered in the CCR database. The contracting officer shall advise the offeror of the number of days it will be allowed to become registered. If the offeror does not become registered by the required date, the contracting officer shall award to the next otherwise successful registered offeror following the same procedures (i.e., if the next apparently successful offeror is not registered, the contracting officer shall advise the offeror of the number of days it will be allowed to become registered, etc.); or (2) If the needs of the requiring activity do not allow for a delay, proceed to award to the next otherwise successful registered offeror, provided that written approval is obtained at one level above the contracting officer.

Contracting Officers are reminded that they are required, by FAR 4.1103(a)(1), to ensure that the prospective contractor is registered in the CCR database before awarding a contract and they are encouraged to check the CCR early in the acquisition process, after the competitive range has been established, and then communicate to the unregistered offerors that they must register.

 


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