SmallGovCon Week in Review: April 12-April 16

Lately, I’ve been enjoying attending my daughter’s soccer games on the weekend. It’s nice getting out into the fresh air. Hope you are able to enjoy some fresh air this weekend as well. But before you do, check out the latest updates in government contracting.

This week saw some important updates in the federal contracting world. These included new details about the GSA administrator, a potential increased emphasis on evaluation of past performance, and DOD’s innovation ecosystem.

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Past Performance: Agency Can Consider Whether Prime & Subcontractor Have Worked Together Previously

An agency’s past performance evaluation may consider whether the prime contractor and a proposed subcontractor have worked together previously–even if the solicitation is silent about such consideration.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO held that there was nothing improper about an agency’s determination that the awardee’s prior working history with its subcontractor decreased performance risk.

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5 Things to Know About an 8(a) Bona Fide Place of Business

Eligibility to bid for construction contracts in the 8(a) program can be a maze to navigate for small businesses. The lifeblood for these companies is identifying and becoming eligible to bid for these prized solicitations. As a new 8(a) entity, or one looking to branch out, you may be wondering how to establish a bona fide place of business.

In order to qualify for construction contracts in the 8(a) program, offerors are required to have a bona fide place of business (or BFPOB) within the established geographic area. This post will walk you through when and how to request a determination from the SBA, and when to expect a decision.

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SBA Suggests Three Pages or Fewer for Social Disadvantage Narratives–But Really?

SBA guidance on Certify.SBA.Gov suggests that an 8(a) Program applicant’s social disadvantage narrative should be “three pages or less.” While we are definitely in the habit of recommending small business contractors to follow SBA’s guidance most of the time, we simply cannot climb aboard the “three-page” ship. In fact, we have significant concerns that submitting a one to three page narrative could potential “sink” your 8(a) application (at a minimum, requiring you to make extensive and time-consuming revisions later on).

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Event: Three-Part Series on Joint Ventures & Prime/Subcontractor Teams

For small and large businesses alike, joint venturing and prime/subcontractor teaming on federal contracts can bring powerful benefits. But the rules governing teaming and JVs can be complex, and in focusing on compliance, sometimes best practices can get lost in the shuffle.

On April 20 through 22, please join me and Nicole Pottroff for a special, three-part course on joint ventures and prime/subcontractor teaming, hosted by Govology. We’ll cover the key compliance rules in plain English, dispel common myths, and discuss best practices to help your teaming documents go beyond bare-bones compliance. It’s easy to register: just click here.

We hope to see you starting on April 20!

SmallGovCon Week in Review: April 5-April 9

As I drove into work today, the redbuds are in full bloom. The purple flowers are the first to appear, after a long, cold winter and it’s a pretty sight and a sure sign that spring is here. Hope you are able to enjoy some nice spring weather this weekend and immerse yourself in the beauty in your part of the world.

But before you start the weekend, catch up on some key news in the federal contracting world. This included contractors anticipating the next big spending bill, new picks for leaders at DoD acquisition and GSA, and DoD seeing increased interest in its Defense Innovation Unit.

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