Resources Available to Contractors Impacted by COVID-19

Resources Available to Contractors Impacted by COVID-19

Like many other industries and professions, government contractors are experiencing difficulties due to COVID-19 and its resulting quarantine. It has caused work to stop and delay the completion of projects. The U.S. government has recognized the challenges contractors have been facing due to the pandemic and has made efforts to help them in this unique time. Resources and other information government contractors should know about are described below.

New FAR Provision Will Disadvantage Small Businesses in MATOC Bids

New FAR Provision Will Disadvantage Small Businesses in MATOC Bids

For nine years, contracting officers have operated under an interim rule for setting aside or reserving task and delivery orders for small businesses under multiple award contracts. That changed on March 30, 2020, when a final rule issued by the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Council went into effect. The final rule installed significant changes from the interim policy. The changes are a bit of a mixed bag for the small business community. While the rule touts a “positive economic impact,” certain features appear likely to disadvantage some small businesses competing for task and...

Federal Agencies Are Severely Behind EIS Transition Schedule

Federal Agencies Are Severely Behind EIS Transition Schedule

In August 2017, the General Services Administration (GSA) awarded a potential 15-year, $50 billion Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) contract to 10 telecommunications companies. EIS is a government-wide contract that provides federal agencies with mission-critical telecommunications, infrastructure, and information technology services. Its goal is to provide transformational communications services for federal agencies from a mix of traditional and non-traditional telecommunications services providers.

False Claims Act Violations in Medicare Claims

False Claims Act Violations in Medicare Claims

The United States Justice Department recentlydisclosedthat the large health insurance companyHumana Inc.is under investigation for potentially defrauding Medicare. The Justice Department is currently examining the U.S. False Claims Act (FCA) violation of three companies alleged with committing Medicare fraud including Aetna Inc., Health Net Inc., and Bravo Health Inc. which is a division of Cigna Corp. A Humana spokesperson said in an emailed statement that the company has publicly disclosed it was part of an investigation by the United States Justice Department. Statistics suggest that...

Service Contract Act

Service Contract Act

The McNamara-O’Hara Service Contract Act (the “Act” or “SCA”) applies to every contract entered into by the United States or the District of Columbia, the principal purpose of which is to furnish services in the United States through the use of service employees. Contractors and subcontractors performing on such Federal contracts must observe minimum wage and safety and health standards, and must maintain certain records, unless a specific exemption applies. Wage Requirements Under the Act The Act requires contractors and subcontractors performing services on prime contracts in excess of...

Davis-Bacon Violations

Davis-Bacon Violations

The Davis-Bacon Act, established in 1931, requires contractors and subcontractors that are performing contracts to pay local prevailing wages to laborers and mechanics that work on public works projects. The Davis-Bacon Act applies to federally-funded or assisted contracts in excess of $2,000 for construction, alteration, or repair of public buildings or public works. The work laborers and mechanics encompasses are far broader than what the names imply. These jobs include carpenters, electricians, plumbers, welders, flaggers, and many more. However, employees that are not covered by the...

Defense Department Releases Unified Cybersecurity Standard

Defense Department Releases Unified Cybersecurity Standard

Thousands of smaller defense contractors face new cybersecurity standards that will soon be a cost of doing business as the Pentagon seeks to prevent hacking and theft from countries such as China and Iran. The Department of Defense (the “DoD”) plans to release the standards at the end of January 2020 as it rushes toward a new requirement for universal auditing of contractors’ cyber safeguards by this summer. The military’s vast commercial supply chain has emerged as a critical national security weakness, and a total of about 300,000 contractors will be subject to the cyber auditing and...

Rocky Mountain Helium Wins Case Against Bureau of Land Management

Rocky Mountain Helium Wins Case Against Bureau of Land Management

Rocky Mountain Helium, LLC (“Rocky Mountain”) filed a legal action against the U.S. government for breach of a Settlement Agreement. The dispute involved requirements in the Settlement Agreement between the Bureau of Land Management (“BLM”) and Rocky Mountain. The United States Court of Federal Claims granted summary judgment in favor of Rocky Mountain.

Staffing Company Seeks Additional Expenses Incurred From U.S. Gov.

Staffing Company Seeks Additional Expenses Incurred From U.S. Gov.

Just In Time Staffing, a staffing services company, filed suit in the United Court of Federal Claims (COFC) against the United States government for expenses it incurred during labor negotiations in connection with a government contract. The U.S. government filed a motion to dismiss because Just in Time Staffing did not state a claim on which relief could be granted and the COFC did not have subject matter jurisdiction.

Northrup Grumman's PRB Cost Accounting Caused Disallowed Costs

Northrup Grumman's PRB Cost Accounting Caused Disallowed Costs

Northrop Grumman Corporation's (Northrop) accounting of costs for providing post-retirement benefits (PRB) are in dispute. PRBs are benefits available to employees once they retire and may include health care, life insurance, disability, and welfare benefits. The Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) allows contractors to obtain reimbursement for PRB from the federal government. Northrop's Accounting Methods In 1991, the FAR was amended and required PRB costs assigned to a given year to be funded by that year’s tax return deadline to be able to be reimbursed from the government. The amendment...