Should a contractor report sales and remit the fee if sales/fee for a particular contract are zero or some small amount?
How are the procedures for ordering services under the Multiple Award Schedules Program different from the procedures for ordering products?
- For orders of services and/or products up to the micro-purchase threshold: Place the order with any Schedule contractor.
- For orders above the micro-purchase threshold but below the maximum order threshold:
- Services Requiring a Statement of Work: Prepare a request for quotes that includes the statement of work; transmit the request to at least three Schedule contractors; evaluate responses; and make a best value selection.
- Products and Services That Do Not Require a Statement of Work: Review the GSA Advantage! online shopping service or at least three Schedule contractors' pricelists; evaluate; and make a best value selection.
- For orders above the maximum order threshold:
- Services Requiring a Statement of Work: Follow the same procedures for orders above the micro-purchase threshold, except transmit the request for quotes to additional Schedule contractors; seek price reductions; evaluate responses; and make a best value selection.
- Products and Services That Do Not Require a Statement of Work: Follow the same procedures for orders above the micro-purchase threshold, except review additional Schedule contractors' pricelists or use the GSA Advantage! online shopping service; seek price reductions; evaluate; and make a best value selection.
If I've been a subcontractor, when I get my Schedule will I be able to get the same rates the prime has been getting?
What are the differences between GSA Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contracts, Governmentwide acquisition contracts (GWACs), and Multi-agency contracts (MACs)?
GSA's goal is to be the best value supplier of choice. Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contracts offer "most favored customer" pricing/discounts. Quantity discounts may also be available. With the elimination of maximum order limitations, and the implementation of maximum order thresholds, contractors may now accept "any size" orders. In accordance with Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 8.404(b)(3), the maximum order threshold represents the point where it is advantageous for customers to seek price reductions. In fact, for orders exceeding this threshold, after a customer reviews additional Schedule contractors' pricelists or GSA Advantage!, the FAR, as well as the Ordering Procedures for Services (Requiring a Statement of Work), instructs the customer to generally seek price reductions from Schedule contractor(s) appearing to provide the best value (considering price and other factors). Agencies are encouraged and empowered to seek price reductions, not only for orders over the maximum order threshold, but also when circumstances warrant, for orders below this amount in order to ensure that when using MAS contracts, they receive the best value at the lowest overall cost.
Sometimes I need delivery right away. Can I get it when I use Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contracts?
When I place an order under a Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contract does it meet Competition in Contracting Act (CICA) requirements?
A detailed explanation is under the CTA FAQ section below. A CTA under the MAS Program is an arrangement in which two or more Schedule contractors join together to provide a total solution to meet a customer's needs. Orders placed under a CTA are subject to the terms and conditions of each team member's Schedule contract.
Is it really easier to purchase from Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contracts than it is to procure on the open market?
Purchasing from MAS contracts offers the following advantages over procuring on the open market:
- GSA has determined prices under MAS contracts to be fair and reasonable.
- Synopses are not required for MAS purchases.
- MAS contracts have been awarded in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.
- Administrative time is reduced.
- MAS contracts offer a wide selection of state-of-the-art commercial services and products.
Can the Multiple Award Schedules meet all of my needs? Even large or complex requirements? What if the Schedule contractor doesn't have everything under contract? How can I be certain that the services or products I need, including new technology, are alw
Yes. The Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) has been amended to incorporate policies that address the handling of open market items. Note: Open market items are also known as incidental items, noncontract items, non-Schedule items, and items not on a Federal Supply Schedule contract. In accordance with FAR 8.401(d), for administrative convenience, an ordering office contracting officer may add items not on the Federal Supply Schedule (Multiple Award Schedule) contract, i.e., open market items to a Federal Supply Schedule blanket purchase agreement (BPA) or an individual task or delivery order only if, all applicable acquisition regulations pertaining to the purchase of the items not on the Federal Supply Schedule contract have been followed (e.g., publicizing (Part 5), competition requirements (Part 6), acquisition of commercial items (Part 12), contracting methods (Parts 13, 14, and 15), and small business programs (Part 19); The ordering office contracting officer has determined the price for the items not on the Federal Supply Schedule contract is fair and reasonable; The items are clearly labeled on the order as items not on the Federal Supply Schedule contract; and All clauses applicable to items not on the Federal Supply Schedule contract are included in the order.
What is a Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) under a Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contract? Are there any dollar limitations when establishing BPAs?
A detailed explanation is under the BPA FAQ section below. An MAS BPA is a simplified method of filling recurring needs for services and products, while leveraging a customer's buying power by taking advantage of quantity discounts, saving administrative time, and reducing paperwork. A BPA is an "account" established by a customer with a Schedule contractor. MAS BPAs are authorized by FAR 13.303-2(c)(3). With an MAS BPA customers can order as little as they want, as much as they want, and as often as they want. Customers are not restricted by any dollar limitations when placing orders under an MAS BPA. A BPA can be set up for field offices across the nation to use, thus allowing them to participate in a customer's BPA and place orders directly with Schedule contractors. In doing so, the entire agency reaps the benefits of additional discounts negotiated into the BPA. A BPA cannot exceed the contractor's Schedule contract period. Customers should always perform an annual review of each BPA to determine whether the BPA is still a "best value." Contractor Team Arrangements, which are permitted with MAS contractors in accordance with FAR 9.6, may be incorporated into a BPA.
As an ordering agency Contracting Officer, can I terminate an order or must I go through the GSA Contracting Officer?
Yes, but all appeals must be submitted to SBA’s Office of Hearings and Appeals in writing within ten business days of the date of receipt of a determination. (See 13 C.F.R. §125.27).
A joint venture's ability to qualify as an SDVOSB primarily centers on control of the joint venture. The SDVOSB must be the managing venturer, an employee of the SDVOSB must be the project manager, 51% of the net profits of the joint venture must go to the SDVOSB, and the SDVOSB must retain the joint venture's original records. A joint venture of at least one SDVOSB and oneor more other business concerns may submit an offer as a small business for a competitive SDVOSB procurement so long as each concern is small under the size standard corresponding to the North American Industry Classification System code assigned to the contract. (See 13 C.F.R. 125.15).
In order to be eligible for award of an SDVOSB set-aside contract, a firm must represent, at the time of its offer, that it is an eligible SDVOSB. (See FAR 52.219-1 and 52.219-27).
SBA has fifteen (15) working days to render a decision after receipt of a protest. The SBA may request an extension from the Contracting Officer if more time is needed. (See 13 C.F.R. 125.127 (c)).
SBA will consider an SDVOSB protest only if the protester presents credible evidence that the concern is not 51% owned/controlled by a veteran with a service-connected disability. (See 13 C.F.R. 125.26).
A size protest is a challenge to an offeror’s representation that it does not exceed the size standard assigned to a solicitation. A service-disabled veteran-owned status protest involves an allegation that an offeror does not qualify as an SDVO SBC.
All questions about a firm's service-disabled veteran-owned size status must be referred to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for resolution (see Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Â§19.307(h). Size protests are decided by the SBA's Government Contracting Area Office serving the geographical area where the protested firm is located (See 13 C.F.R. 121.1002 and FAR 19.302(c) (1). SDVOSB status protests are decided by the SBA Director for Government Contracting, (See 13 C.F.R. 125.24(e) and FAR 19.307(c). Any questions concerning an apparent successful offeror's representation that it qualifies as an SDVOSB, including a challenge from a Contracting Officer, must be forwarded to the SBA. (See 13 C.F.R. 125.8).
A size protest is a challenge to an offeror's representation that it does not exceed the size standard assigned to a solicitation. A service-disabled veteran-owned status protest involves an allegation that an offeror does not qualify as an SDVOSB.
The Small Business Act defines an SDVOSB as a business that is (1) at least 51% owned directly and unconditionally by a service-disabled veteran and (2) managed and controlled by a service-disabled veteran, or spouse or permanent caregiver of a service-disabled veteran with a permanent and severe disability. (See 13 C.F.R. 125.8-125.10).
The purpose of the service-disabled veteran-owned small business program is to provide procuring agencies with the authority to set acquisitions aside for exclusive competition among service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses, as well as the authority to make sole source awards to service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses if certain conditions are met. (See Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 13 C.F.R. 125.8-125.10).
Some ordering offices are issuing GSA Schedule BPAs for millions of dollars. Is there a dollar amount too large for GSA Schedule BPA procedures? Is there a limit on the dollar value of an order placed against a BPA?
In establishing a GSA Schedule BPA is there a requirement to solicit more than one source, or can the BPA be negotiated with one specific GSA Schedule contractor?
What cost or pricing information does GSA require to establish a GSA Schedule contract? If cost or pricing information is used as the basis for award of a GSA Schedule contract, do ordering offices need this information to establish GSA Schedule BPAs?
If we need additional products not offered on FSS, can we request these additions on our blanket purchase agreement or do we request through the GSA contracting officer the addition of these products to the FSS?
When a BPA is established under a Team Arrangement, can the Team Leader report the Industrial Funding Fee for the entire team?
What is the difference between "traditional" Blanket Purchase Agreements (BPAs) under Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR ) Part 13, Simplified Acquisition Procedures, and BPAs established under the GSA Federal Supply Schedules Program in accordance with
When an ordering office establishes a BPA against a GSA Schedule contract, do orders placed under the BPA meet Competition in Contracting Act (CICA) requirements for full and open competition?
What is GSA's policy regarding adding supplies/services to MAS delivery orders, where those supplies/services are not under MAS contract?
Traditional Blanket Purchase Agreements have supplies and services with prices for each listed. It sounds like these newly "evolved" BPAs don
When a BPA is established under a Contractor Team Arrangement, can the team leader report the Industrial Funding Fee (IFF) for the entire team?
Some agencies are issuing BPAs against schedules for multi-million dollar amounts. Is there a dollar amount too large for MAS/BPA procedures?
Are MAS/BPAs being used in place of the IDIQ government-wide acquisition contracts like Desktop V, with decentralized ordering by several agencies?
When we establish a BPA is there a requirement to solicit more than one source or can we negotiate with one specific vendor?
What cost and pricing information do you require to establish a Federal Supply Schedule contract? If cost and pricing data is used as a basis for award of an FSS contract, do we need this information to establish a MAS/BPA?
When establishing a GSA Schedule BPA, can the terms and conditions of the GSA Schedule contract be modified? For example, if the GSA Schedule contract has a delivery time of 60 days from receipt of order, but the ordering office needs delivery in 30 days,
If we need additional services/products not offered on GSA Schedule contracts, can we add such services/products to our BPA or do we submit a request to the GSA Contracting Officers
- All applicable acquisition regulations pertaining to the purchase of the items not on the GSA Schedule contract have been followed (e.g., publicizing (Part 5), competition requirements (Part 6), acquisition of commercial items (Part 12), contracting methods (Parts 13, 14, and 15), and small business programs (Part 19));
- The ordering agency contracting officer has determined the prices for the items not on the GSA Schedule contract are fair and reasonable;
- The items are clearly labeled on the order as items not on GSA Schedule contract; and
- All clauses applicable to items not on the GSA Schedule contract are included in the order.
Regarding a multiple award schedule blanket purchase agreement, can we modify terms and conditions of the Federal Supply Schedule contract (e.g., FSS requires 60 day delivery from receipt of order, but we want a 30 day requirements)?
If the contractor does not perform acceptably under a Cooperative Purchasing order issued by a state or local entity, should the ordering activity request the GSA Contracting Officer take corrective measures?
No. The Cooperative Purchasing Program only allows for state and local government entities to purchase from contracts awarded under GSA Schedule 70, Information Technology, contracts containing IT SINs awarded under the Consolidated (formerly Corporate Contracts) Schedule, and contracts awarded under GSA Schedule 84, Total Solutions for Law Enforcement, Security, Facility Management Systems, Fire, Rescue, Special Purpose Clothing, Marine Craft, and Emergency/Disaster Response. State and local government entities may not use the Cooperative Purchasing Program to purchase products and services from contracts awarded under any other GSA Schedules.
Can contractors or grantees of state and local government entities purchase from the Schedule contracts?
Can state and local governments utilize Federal Supply Service (FSS) Governmentwide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs) under Cooperative Purchasing?
No. State and local government entities may only purchase information technology from GSA Schedule 70, Information Technology, and Consolidated (formerly Corporate Contracts) Schedule contracts containing IT SINs. GSA Governmentwide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs) are not authorized for use by state and local government entities under Section 211 of the E-Government Act of 2002 or the Local Preparedness Acquisition Act.
Under Cooperative Purchasing, can ordering activities include terms and conditions required by state or local statutes, ordinances, regulations, or orders?
Are any GSA Schedule contract terms and conditions not incorporated by reference into Cooperative Purchasing orders?
May state and local government entities use credit cards to purchase products and services under this program?
Can state and local government entities be granted additional price reductions under the Schedule contracts?
Will a spot discount to state and local government entities under the GSA Schedule contract trigger the Price Reductions clause? No. Granting state and local government entities additional price
Does the Trade Agreements Act apply to contracts between the Schedule contractor and state and local government entities?
Yes. All Schedule contract terms and conditions, except those stated in Questions 14 and 15, apply to contracts between the GSA Schedule contractor and state and local government entities.
Is a formal contract between GSA Federal Supply Schedule contractors required to establish a Contractor Team Arrangement (CTA)?
How can an ordering agency ensure that the responses it receives to its Request For Quotation (RFQ) are, in fact, Contractor Team Arrangements (CTAs) and not simply Prime Contractor/Subcontractor Arrangements?
My team member's rates/prices are much higher than mine. Can I charge my team member's rates/prices instead of mine?
In a GSA Federal Supply Schedule Contractor Team Arrangement (CTA), who is responsible for reporting sales and remitting the industrial funding fee?
There is a cost involved for my company to participate in a GSA Federal Supply Schedule Contractor Team Arrangement (CTA). How do I recoup these costs under my GSA Schedule contract?
Can team members still use subcontractors and if so, would the subcontractors be considered team members of the GSA Federal Supply Schedule Contractor Team Arrangement (CTA) if the subcontractors did not hold individual GSA Schedule contracts?
- Satisfies the customer with a single solution; Increases competitive edge;
- Increases market share; Increases visibility; Focuses on core capabilities;
- Obtains complementary capabilities; Integrates different skills;
- Offers additional opportunities with customers;
- Builds direct relationships with customers;
- Maximizes use of one or more GSA Schedule solutions;
- Shares risks and rewards; and
- Increases small business participation.
How do GSA Federal Supply Schedule Contractor Team Arrangements (CTAs) differ from Prime Contractor/Subcontractor Arrangements?
|Contractor Team Arrangement (CTA)||Prime Contractor/Subcontractor Arrangement|
|Each team member holds a GSA Schedule contract.||Only prime contractor has a government contract.|
|Any team member may be designated the team leader. Team leader is only responsible for duties addressed in the CTA.||Prime contractor cannot delegate responsibility for performance to subcontractors.|
|Any team member can interact directly with the government.||Only prime contractor can interact with the government.|
|Responsibility of each team member is described in the CTA.||Prime contractor is totally responsible for performance.|
|Each GSA Schedule contractor's prices have been determined fair and reasonable.||Prime contractor determines price reasonableness of its subcontractors.|
|Each contractor has privity of contract with the government.||Only prime contractor has privity of contract with the government.|
|Ordering agency is invoiced at each GSA Schedule contractor's prices.||Ordering agency is invoiced at the prime contractor's prices.|
|Total solutions can be put together quickly and easily.||N/A|
- Identifies participants, GSA Schedule contract numbers, and services and products covered by the arrangement;
- Defines terms;
- Sets forth each participant's roles, responsibilities, and obligations;
- Identifies scope, period of performance (for specific, limited purposes or longer periods covering several transactions), and termination of the arrangement;
- Identifies remunerations for functions performed, if any;
- Establishes scope and limitations of any licenses or proprietary rights;
- Establishes representations and warranties among the parties;
- Identifies confidentiality requirements, obligations, disclosures, and remedies;
- Identifies damages, liability/limitation of liability, and any indemnification requirements among the parties;
- Addresses administrative requirements (e.g., assignments, how notices will be conveyed and recognized, how changes or amendments will occur);
- Identifies any terms that survive the arrangement or termination; Identifies governing laws, venues, etc.;
- Establishes how disputes will be addressed and resolved; and
- Addresses force majeure; i.e., addresses how an unexpected or uncontrollable event will impact a team member's obligation under the CTA.
Which agencies participate in the HUBZone program and where are these contract opportunities posted for general public review?
Can the SBA protest a contracting officer's decision not to award a contract opportunity to a qualified HUBZone small business?
Does a business that attempts to qualify for the HUBZone Program based upon its location on an Indian reservation have to be Indian owned?
Will small businesses participating in the SBA?s 8(a) Business Development Program that are already in or relocate to a HUBZone area be eligible to receive both 8(a) and HUBZone contracting opportunities?
Does this program only apply to small businesses that are currently located in HUBZones, or can firms move to these areas and then become eligible to participate?
If my small business has several offices and one is qualified as a ?principal office? that serves as the basis for a HUBZone designation, can all my offices claim HUBZone certification?
The HUBZone Program is based on a geographical designation. Are there differences in these geographical assignments and approximately how many current locations are there for each?
A HUBZone may be one of the following:
- A qualified census tract. The definition for Qualified Census Tract is based on an Internal Revenue Service provision for the low income housing tax credit program that is developed in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The Secretary of HUD designates Qualified Census Tracts by a notice published periodically in the Federal Register. The most recent notice based on the results of the 2000 census data collection appeared December 12, 2002, and were represented on the HUBZone mapping system on May 19, 2003. (11,600 TOTAL in U.S.).
Information on how data is compiled for the Qualified Census Tracts designation is available on the web at qct.huduser.org
- A qualified county. The definition for qualified county is any county that, based on the most recent data available from the U.S. Census Bureau, is not located in a metropolitan statistical area and in which the median household income is less than 80 percent of the median household income for the entire non-metropolitan area of a state and/or any non-metropolitan county that, based on the most recent data available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), has an unemployment rate that is not less than 140 percent of the statewide average unemployment rate. (1,200 TOTAL in U.S.).
Information on decennial census data used to determine the household income is available on the web at www.census.gov/main/www/cen2000.html.
Information in the local employment data used to determine the unemployment element is available on the web at www.bls.gov/lau/home.htm#data
- A qualified Indian reservation. The definitions for qualified Indian reservations, which include lands covered by the phrase 'Indian Country,' are those established and used by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. There is one exception, which applies to portions of the state of Oklahoma where HUBZone is using a definition arrived at by the Internal Revenue Service. (EXCEEDS 340 TOTAL in U.S.).
Information on Native American reservations and related information is available on the web at www.doi.gov/bureau-indian-affairs.html.
Information on the Internal Revenue Service description for former Indian Reservations in Oklahoma is available on the web at www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=99491,00.html
Clarification on applicability to state and local governments
- This makes clear that the HUBZone program does not apply to contracts awarded by state and local governments, since the HUBZone Act only applies to the federal government.
Definition of 'principal office
- The amended rule says that for concerns whose primary industry is services or construction (i.e., other than manufacturing), the principal office would be the location where the greatest number of the concern's employees perform their work, but excluding those employees who perform their work at job-site locations to fulfill specific contract obligations.
Rules on affiliation
- Before the amendment, regulations permitted a qualified HUBZone SBC to have affiliates only if those affiliates are qualified HUBZone SBCs, participants in the 8(a) Business Development Program, or woman-owned businesses (WOBs). But this was all seen as overly restrictive.
- Accordingly, SBA eliminated these restrictions on affiliation and allows a qualified HUBZone SBC to have affiliates as long as it, when combined with its affiliates, is still small pursuant to SBA's size regulations.
- In addition, the removal allows SBCs in non-HUBZone areas to establish new business ventures in HUBZones. This is especially critical due to the historical lack of investment capital in HUBZones and the need for such capital to establish new businesses that will promote economic development and create jobs.
Procurement requirements for non-manufacturers
- SBA amended the provisions concerning non-manufacturers.
- Under the amended rule, non-manufacturer HUBZone concerns no longer are required to demonstrate that they can provide product or products manufactured by qualified HUBZone SBCs.
- SBA now allows a qualified HUBZone SBC to use any manufacturer, including a large business, for HUBZone contracts at or below $25,000 in total value. This provision encourages the participation of small business non-manufacturers that are located in HUBZones.
- Contracts above $25,000 will still require that the HUBZone non-manufacturer provide the product of a HUBZone manufacturer
Federal Contract Benefits -
There are four types of HUBZone contract opportunities:Competitive: Contracts can be set-aside for HUBZone competition when the contracting officer has a reasonable expectation that at least two qualified HUBZone small business concerns (SBCs) will submit offers and that the contract will be awarded at a fair market price.
Sole-source: HUBZone contracts can be awarded if the contracting officer determines that:
- only one qualified HUBZone SBC is responsible to perform the contract,
- two or more qualified HUBZone SBCs are not likely to submit offers and
- the anticipated award price of the proposed contract, including options, will not exceed:
--- $3 million for a requirement within all other NAICS codes
Subcontracting: All subcontracting plans for large business Federal contractors must include a HUBZone subcontracting goal.
Other Specialized Assistance
- Eligible HUBZone firms can qualify for higher SBA-guaranteed surety bonds on construction and service contract bids.
- Firms in Federal Empowerment Zones and Enterprise Communities (EZ/EC) can also benefit from employer tax credits, tax-free facility bonds, and investment tax deductions
- It must be a small business by SBA size standards;
- Its principal office must be located within a HUBZone, which includes lands on federally recognized Indian reservations;
- It must be owned and controlled by one or more U.S. citizens (N.B.-this means any level of ownership in an applicant small business by another company would result in a decline). Approved ownership can also be by a Community Development Corporation or Indian tribe; and
- At least 35% of its employees must reside in a HUBZone
If I own the company applying for HUBZone certification, should I include myself when calculating the number of employees?
Can contractors report sales and remit fees on a contract rather than Special Item Number (SIN) basis?
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Recovery.gov is a website that lets you, the taxpayer, figure out where the money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is going. There are going to be a few different ways to search for information. Within days after the signing of the legislat