Playing Dr. Frankenstein: DoD Memo Tries to Revive Joint Venture Facility Clearance Requirements

Back in 2021, GAO came down with a clear decision on whether Department of Defense (DoD) agencies could require a joint venture (JV) to have its own facility clearance level (FCL) if its component members held the required FCL themselves. Infopoint LLC, B-419856 (Aug. 27, 2021). That decision was “no,” and it was based on a very strong foundation: The 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (2020 NDAA), an act of Congress, contained a provision, Section 1629, expressly forbidding DoD agencies from doing such. We in fact did a blog post on this GAO decision and litigated this very matter. Despite this, in October 2023, the DoD quietly released a memorandum describing how they think they can still require JVs to have their own FCL. Today, we look at this memorandum to see what DoD is saying.

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VA Updates, Expands, and Clarifies Its Verification Assistance Briefs

The VA and SBA have numerous regulations defining the eligibility requirements for participation in the veteran-owned and service-disabled veteran-owned small business programs. To help laypersons better understand these regulatory hurdles the VA publishes Verification Assistance Briefs.

These “are resources to assist applicants in obtaining VA Verification for the Veterans First Contracting Program” and understand SBA’s ownership and control criteria. The VA recently updated all of its existing Briefs and added some new ones. Read on for an overview of the 26 Briefs and a more detailed look at some of the more notable ones.

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“Similarly Situated Entities” Exempt From Ostensible Subcontractor Affiliation, SBA OHA Confirms

A “similarly situated entity” cannot be an ostensible subcontractor under the SBA’s affiliation rules.

In a recent size appeal decision, the SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals confirmed that changes made to the SBA’s size regulations in 2016 exempt similarly situated entities from ostensible subcontractor affiliation.

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