Bidders Beware: Follow the Government’s Rules or Risk Losing the Contract

Read any bid protest decision issued by the U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) and you will see that the losers are frequently reminded of their responsibility to submit adequately written and affirmatively stated proposals that clearly and unambiguously demonstrate their strengths in the areas specified by the contracting agency. Even incumbent contractors who have developed […]

When There’s a Mistake in a Contract Bid: What You Should Do

There’s been a lot of discussion recently about mistakes in bids for federal contracts. Mistakes can happen, particularly when bidders are rushed (and who isn’t rushed when preparing and submitting a bid?). Mistakes can be minor and waivable at the government’s discretion; they can be subject to correction in certain situations; or they can result […]

Anti-Corruption Effort in Afghanistan Snares 81 Contractors, Leads to Debarment

By Pamela J. Bethel Government contractors working in Afghanistan should be on notice that they are being scrutinized for possible fraud and corruption and could be excluded from bidding for contracts. Eighty-one companies – some American and some international or Afghan – have recently been debarred from government contracts related to the war on Afghanistan, […]

GSA Unveiling Streamlined Procurement System: Will It Work?

By Carol L. O’Riordan The federal government is beginning the launch of its new System for Award Management, known briefly as SAM. This is an attempt by the government to combine nine currently separate federal procurement systems and databases into one, in order to make life easier for government contractors and for the agencies that […]

Sen. Snowe Seeks Data From VA About Small Business Certification Program

On Feb. 9, 2012, Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Me.) wrote to Eric K. Shinseki, the secretary of veterans affairs, noting that many veteran-owned small businesses are complaining about the struggles that they face when applying to the VA for certification as service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses (SDVOSB’s). Many small businesses, Sen. Snowe wrote, “have reported long delays, […]

Government Contractors Get 7-Day Review Period to Challenge Publication of Data

By Carol L. O’Riordan and Selena Brady Government contractors will now have a slightly better means of challenging the possible release to the general public of information on them that may actually be exempt from publication under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). On January 3, 2012, the Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council, which helps coordinate […]

Task Force Meeting Will Give Veterans an ‘Open Mike’ on Contracting

By Carol L. O’Riordan Veterans who are federal contractors under the government’s various small business programs, or would like to become contractors, will have a chance to vent their concerns or express their praise at an upcoming public meeting of the Interagency Task Force on Veterans Small Business Development. The Veterans Administration is one of […]

U.S. Announces Recovery of $422 Million in Contract Fraud in FY 2011

By Carol L. O’Riordan The Justice Department announced on Dec. 19, 2011, that it recovered $422 million in fiscal year 2011 in procurement fraud cases. The total amount recovered for procurement fraud in the last three fiscal years exceeds $1.5 billion, a record for any three-year period. It’s clear that procurement and contract fraud are […]

VA Changes Stance on Key Issue on Veterans’ Set-Aside Contracts

In response to a more-than-gentle nudge from the Government Accountability Office (GAO), a lawsuit by veteran-owned companies, and considerable dissatisfaction on Capitol Hill, the Veterans Administration has backtracked from a prior legal position that could have reduced the impact of a 2006 law that Congress passed in order to help veterans obtain government contracts on […]