Government’s Delayed Response Breached Contract, Says ASBCA

Here’s a situation my colleagues and I see with some frequency: a contractor, in the course of working on a government contract, submits a request of some sort to the agency.  Then waits for a response.  And waits some more.  Meanwhile, the government’s delay in responding prevents the contractor from moving forward with some aspect of the project, causing the contractor to incur costs.

For contractors faced with this type of government inaction, a recent decision by the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals is welcome news.  In that case, the ASBCA held that the government breached its implied duty of good faith and fair dealing by waiting more than three months to respond to the contractor’s request to amend the Statement of Work–allowing the contractor to “twist in the wind” during that period.

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SmallGovCon Week in Review: June 25 – 29, 2018

I hope everyone has a safe and happy 4th of July as we celebrate our nation’s independence. If you’re still struggling to think of top-notch grilling ideas for Independence Day, might I suggest this delicious recipe from the fine folks at the Big Green Egg?

But before firing up the grill, let’s take a look at the latest and greatest in government contracting news.  In this week’s star-spangled edition of the SmallGovCon Week in Review, a former government employee pleads guilty to criminal charges related to using her position to benefit her husband’s company, Alaska Native Corporations celebrate as three military branches agree to reinterpret a limit on high-dollar sole source 8(a) contracts, and much more.

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Limitations on Subcontracting: FAR Revisions May Be Delayed

At least a couple times a month, I’m asked when the FAR’s limitations on subcontracting provisions will be updated to correspond with SBA regulations adopted in 2016, and underlying statutory changes adopted way back in the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act.

Well, now it seems that the FAR updates may take longer than I’d hoped.  In its most recent “Open Cases” update, the FAR Council says that it’s made a switch in the procedure that will be used to implement the changes to the limitations on subcontracting–and that switch will likely delay the implementation of those changes by several months.

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SBA Inspector General: 89% of WOSB Sole Source Contracts Were Improper

Nearly 90% of women-owned small business sole source contracts reviewed by the SBA Office of Inspector General were improper, according to a startling report issued yesterday.

In the study, the SBA OIG concluded that because of pervasive flaws in the award of WOSB and EDWOSB sole source contracts, “there was no assurance that these contracts were awarded to firms that were eligible to receive sole-source awards under the Program.”  And if that wasn’t enough, the SBA OIG reiterated its position that, as a legal matter, it is improper to award any WOSB or EDWOSB sole source contract to a self-certified company.

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SmallGovCon Welcomes Stephan Skepnek

I am very pleased to announce that Stephan Skepnek has joined our team of attorney-authors here at SmallGovCon.  Stephan is an associate attorney with Koprince Law LLC, where his practice focuses on federal government contracts law.

Before joining our team, Stephan practiced civil litigation and administrative law with the Kansas Corporation Commission.  Check out Stephan’s full biography to learn more about our newest author, and don’t miss his first SmallGovCon post on the GAO’s tricky timeliness rules.

GovCon Voices: Five Quick Tips for Winning Proposal Graphics

Even skilled graphic designers often struggle with creating effective proposal graphics. While the usual rules of good graphic design still apply, proposal graphics come with their own unique set of challenges and requirements.

In this post, we’ll look at some quick tips that can mean the difference between missed opportunities and winning graphics. But first, let’s dispel two common myths.

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SBA OHA Rejects “Chain Affiliation” Theory

Ordinarily, a company isn’t affiliated with the affiliates of its affiliates.

That sentence may sound a little silly, but it encapsulates an important principle about the breadth of the SBA’s affiliation rules.  As demonstrated in a recent SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals decision, the SBA doesn’t apply its rules to create “chain affiliation.”

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