SmallGovCon Week In Review: September 28 – October 2, 2015

The fiscal year has ended and a potential government shutdown was avoided…for now. As we jump into October, we look forward to cooler temperatures, football games, and fall festivities. Of course we haven’t forgotten that it is Friday, which means that it is time for the latest and greatest in government contracting.

This week’s SmallGovCon Week In Review includes stories on the end of the fiscal year, a hefty settlement for improper inflation of labor hours, some tips on improving your contracting experience and more.

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Kingdomware Shocker: VA Abandons Goal-Setting Argument

In a stunning development in the Kingdomware SDVOSB/VOSB Supreme Court case, the Government has abandoned the argument that the statutory preference for veteran-owned companies applies only if the VA has not met its SDVOSB or VOSB contracting goals.

Although this argument was hotly debated, it was successful both at the Court of Federal Claims and again at the Federal Circuit.  But now, just weeks away from oral arguments, the Government’s Supreme Court brief jettisons the Government’s own previously successful argument in favor of an entirely different rationale for refusing to honor the statutory SDVOSB and VOSB preferences.

The last-minute, wholesale substitution of arguments doesn’t say much for the Government’s confidence in its case. And on the merits, the Government’s new argument is no better than the one it has abruptly abandoned.

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Offeror’s Winning Bid Of $0.00 Was Acceptable, Says GAO

Under certain circumstances, the winning bidder on a fixed-price contract may offer $0.00.

In a recent decision, LCPtracker, Inc.; eMars, Inc., B-410752.3 et al (Sept. 3, 2015), the GAO held an offeror submitting a zero-dollar offer (that is, an offer for $0.00) was eligible to receive a fixed-price contract because both the Government and the contractor would receive benefits under the contract.

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SmallGovCon Week In Review: September 21-25, 2015

With a potential government shutdown looming, this week’s top news stories focus on the effects that a shutdown may have on government contractors. But the shutdown isn’t the only government contracting news out there. This week’s SmallGovCon Week In Review also includes stories on the government’s new minimum wage and sick leave policies, among others.

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Nonmanufacturer Rule: Large Manufacturers OK’d For Certain Simplified Acquisitions

In a small business set-aside simplified acquisition of $25,000 or less, small business offerors may propose using large business manufacturers while still complying with the requirements of the nonmanufacturer rule.

In a recent decision, the SBA’s Office of Hearings and Appeals held that an apparent ambiguity contained in the nonmanufacturer regulation for certain simplified acquisitions should be resolved in favor of exempting offerors from the requirement that the manufacturer be a small business concern.

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SmallGovCon Week In Review: September 14-18, 2015

As summer turns to fall (and football season), government contractors are dealing with the flurry of awards, orders and modifications that always accompanies the end of the federal fiscal year.  In this week’s SmallGovCon Week In Review, a HUBZone fraudster gets jail time, a Navy report reveals systemic Berry Amendment violations (by the Navy!) and much more.

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WOSB Sole Source Contracts Authorized As Of October 14, 2015

WOSB and EDWOSB sole source contracts will be authorized under the SBA’s regulations effective October 14, 2015.

In a final rule published today, the SBA implemented regulatory authority pursuant to which Contracting Officers may issue sole source contracts.  The question now is whether Contracting Officers will be willing to issue sole source contracts based on the SBA’s rule–or will wait until the FAR Council adopts similar authority.

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