Buy American Act Thresholds Are Going Up

As we’ve written about, it seems like there have been more changes to the Buy American Act and domestic preferences in the last few years than in decades before that. Recently, the FAR Council issued a final rule that spells out how the domestic content thresholds will increase over the next few years. This rule is effective October 25, 2022, so contractors need to be preparing for it now.

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SmallGovCon Week in Review: March 7-11, 2022

If March is supposed to come in like a lion and leave like a lamb, we are certainly still in the lion stage this week, with another winter snow storm that arrived here yesterday. No worries, however, because next week the lamb arrives with 70 degree weather and we are ready for it. Hopefully, this will be winter’s last gasp as warmer temperatures are sure to follow and we spring forward into daylight savings time.

There was a lot happening in federal government contracting news this week, such as the new Buy American Act final rule and updates on more cybersecurity requirements being considered for government agencies. We have included those and some additional articles that we hope you will find informative.

Have a great weekend!

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White House Releases New Details on Made in America Council to Make Domestic Preferences More Uniform

The White House has announced the launch of a Made in America Council, which will be the overarching group to “coordinate and advance the Made in America Office’s work across the entirety of the Federal Government.” This represents a new strategy for things like the Buy American Act and related policies, because it will try to centralize these efforts to some degree, instead of having them disbursed throughout the various federal agencies. Below are some of the highlights from this announcement.

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Agencies May Rely on Offerors’ Buy American Act Certifications Unless “Reason to Believe” Non-Compliance

When an offeror submits a certification that its products qualify as domestic for purposes of the Buy American Act, an agency ordinarily may rely on that certification without further investigation, unless the agency has reason to believe that the products will not be compliant.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO held that an agency acted properly by relying on the offeror’s certification because the protester’s “unsupported allegations” were insufficient to trigger a requirement for further investigation.

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Buy American Act Domestic Component Threshold Gets A Raise

A new FAR final rule recently went into effect that has increased the percentage for the domestic component requirement under the Buy American Act, a percentage that had been in place for nearly 70 years before this recent change.

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Buy American Act Executive Order Promises Much, Will it Deliver?

The White House has released the final language of the Buy America Act. Our recent post looked forward to what we could expect from the final rule. Now the rule has been released, so what is in it?

The executive order promises quite a bit, and a lot of what is promised we will likely not see until 6 to 12 months down the road.

Here is what to expect now, in 6 months, and then down the road.

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Five Things to Look for in Executive Order Strengthening Buy American Act

As we have blogged about previously, the Buy American Act has a number of exceptions and waivers. The United States spends hundreds of billions of dollars each year in contracting alone. The Buy American Act is intended to keep federal dollars in the hands of American companies and manufacturers. The president’s new executive order on these issues, proposes making some significant changes to not only the rule, but to oversight.

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