GAO: Out-Of-Scope Delivery Order Modification Was Improper

An agency may not procure new services under an existing GSA Schedule delivery order if the new services exceed scope of the original delivery order.

In a recent decision, Onix Networking Corp., B-411841 (Nov. 9, 2015), the GAO sustained a protest where the agency acquired a new type of software by modifying an existing delivery order for software license extensions because the acquisition exceeded the scope of the initial delivery order. According to the GAO, the out-of-scope modification amounted to an improper sole source contract.

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GAO: 15-Hour Bid Submission Deadline Was Unreasonable

A procuring agency acted improperly by allowing bidders a mere 15 hours to respond to an amended Invitation for Bids–especially given that most of those 15 hours were outside of ordinary working times.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO sustained an offeror’s protest of the 15-hour deadline, holding that the procuring agency had acted improperly by failing to give prospective bidders a reasonable time to prepare and submit amended bids.

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GAO: SBA’s Five-Day 8(a) Eligibility Deadline Applies To JVs

Before an agency can award an 8(a) contract, the prospective awardee must first be deemed eligible for award under the 8(a) business development program criteria by the Small Business Administration. The SBA has a tight deadline to make this determination—a mere five days.

But what happens when the SBA’s eligibility evaluation is more complicated than a determination of whether the awardee meets the program’s basic eligibility requirements? The GAO recently addressed this issue in FedServ-RBS JV, LLC, B-411790 (Oct. 26, 2015), where the GAO held that the applicable regulations do not require the agency to stay its proposed award beyond five days pending the SBA’s approval of an 8(a) joint venture agreement. Continue reading

GAO: No OCI Where Information Wasn’t Competitively Useful

Access to corporate information on another contract will not result in an information organizational conflict of interest when the information accessed is not competitively useful to the present solicitation.

As a bid protester recently discovered in DV United, LLC, B-411620, B-411620.2 (Sept. 16, 2015), the mere fact that the successful offeror had access to one of its team member’s information on another government contract did not result in an information organizational conflict of interest because the information was not competitively useful.

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GSA Schedule: Contractor Offers Non-Schedule Items, Gets Order Anyway

When an agency orders goods or services using the GSA Schedule, the ordered items generally must be on the awardee’s Schedule contract as of the date of the order–but need not be on the Schedule contract at an earlier date.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO held that an agency had properly awarded a GSA Schedule order even though the awardee did not have the ordered services on its Schedule contract at the time of its offer, because the awardee’s GSA Schedule contract was modified to include those services by the date of the order.

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Small Business Status And Task Orders: GAO Provides Some Clarity

According to the GAO, a business qualifies as small for purposes of a task order competition under a Governmentwide Acquisition Contract so long as the business was small for purposes of the underlying GWAC, and the Contracting Officer does not request size recertification in connection with the task order.  And even if recertification is required for the task order, the operative date to determine small business status is the date of the task order offer–not the date the task order is awarded.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO and SBA both weighed in on the question of small business size status for task order competitions, providing some helpful clarity on this often-confusing topic.

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Offeror’s Employee Relocation Plan May Have Posed Retention Risk, Says GAO

An offeror’s plan to relocate a significant number of employees after the first year of a task order may have posed a risk to the offeror’s ability to retain qualified staff.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO held that it was unreasonable for a procuring agency to fail to consider the potential risks of an offeror’s plan to move a portion of its workforce to a different geographical area in order to take advantage of the relatively lower wages of that area.

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