SmallGovCon Week In Review: May 18-22, 2015

As we wind down from our big Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony last night and get ready to swing into the long weekend, here are some of this week’s top stories in government contracting.

  • A Senate chairman has asked the SBA to provide him with a list of every company that was counted toward the federal government’s small business contracting goal in 2014. [The Business Journals]
  • The House of Representatives passed six bills aimed at helping veterans win government-paid jobs, get small business loans or obtain other assistance. [Federal News Radio]
  • The Air Force executed several contracts before the final terms were settled, making them considerably risky. [FierceGovernment]
  • Breathe a sigh of relief – you probably didn’t’ just get kicked out of the VA’s small biz program. [Washington Business Journal]
  • The Georgia Tech Procurement Assistance Center provides a helpful overview of the SAM registration process. [GT PAC]
  • Special delivery of false claims?  UPS agrees to a $25 million settlement to resolve False Claims Act allegations. [US Department of Justice]
  • The GSA is proposing new rules for software contracts. [Washington Business Journal]

SBA Size Appeals: Notification Of Deadline Not Required

Government contractors are expected to be aware of appeal deadlines even if an agency does not mention those deadlines in its decision notifications.

As one contractor recently discovered, a size appeal with the SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals must be filed within the regulatory time frame–and no extension will be granted if the SBA does not notify the potential appellant of the deadline.

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Sorry, Subcontractor: No SBA Size Appeal For You

When the SBA found a subcontractor to be affiliated with its prime contractor under the ostensible subcontractor rule, the subcontractor could not appeal the SBA’s finding to the SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals.

In a recent size appeal decision, OHA held that a subcontractor lacks the ability to file a size appeal because the subcontractor is not directly affected by the size determination.

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SDVOSB Fraud: Company Dissolves To Settle “Rent-A-Vet” Allegations

A contractor has agreed to pay the government $1 million–and to dissolve as an ongoing entity–to resolve allegations that it falsely claimed SDVOSB status in order to receive VA SDVOSB set-aside contracts.

According to a government press release, the settlement comes after VA investigators alleged that the company’s non-veteran partner made all important corporate decisions, while the service-disabled veteran partner spent much of his time away from the company.

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WOSB Program: 15 Of 34 Set-Aside Awards Improper, Says SBA OIG

Of 34 WOSB and EDWOSB set-aside awards examined by the SBA Office of Inspector General, 15 of those awards were improper.

The SBA OIG’s conclusion comes in a new WOSB program report, and suggests that some Contracting Officers are unaware of the WOSB progran’s unique requirements, including the NAICS code limitations for WOSB and EDWOSB set-asides.

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SmallGovCon Week In Review: May 11-15, 2015

I am excited to announce the re-launch of the popular SmallGovCon Week In Review series!  Each Friday, SmallGovCon will provide a snapshot of some of the week’s top news and commentary from the government contracting community.

In this week’s SmallGovCon Week In Review, a False Claims Act settlement, a proposal to ban so-called “inverted” firms from receiving government contracts, Guy Timberlake weighs in on the proposed increase to the Simplified Acquisition Threshold, and much more.

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Reverse Auctions: Last-Second Bid Was “Late”

In a reverse auction, a bid filed literally at the last second was excluded as late, perhaps because the reverse auction system did not process the bid until a few seconds after the deadline.

As a recent GAO protest demonstrates, reverse auctions–by their very nature–encourage last-second bids, but it is the prospective contractor that may pay the price if the reverse auction system does not immediately process a bid.

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