Yesterday we briefed some of the contents of the proposed DoD Ethics and Anti-corruption Act of 2019. The legislation, if enacted, would create a four-year waiting period between the time an mid-level Government employees and higher could go to work in any capacity for a 'giant' contractor (a giant contractor being one with $1 billion in sales to DoD and DOE. If you missed that article, please refer to Part 1 of this series. There are several other aspects to this proposed legislation that might be of interest to Government contractors that we should briefly mention.
Section 102 of the proposed legislation lays out new annual reporting requirements for contracts greater than $10 million. Contractors will need to file reports that names of certain persons to which they paid some form of compensation within four year of those persons leaving the Government. Those persons include members of the Senior Executive Service, officers retiring at O-6 (Colonel) or higher, and any program manager, deputy program manager, procuring contracting officer, administrative contracting officer, source selection authority, member of the source selection evaluation board, or chief of a financial or technical evaluation team.
The report must list the department where the people served in DoD and their position and the extent they were involved in any acquisition greater than $10 million. But the requirements become much more onerous if the contractor is paying the individual(s) as non-employees. The report must then list each specific issue for which the contractor, any employee of the contractor, or any lobbyist paid by the contractor engaged in lobbying activities directed at DoD and for each lobbying activity, a listing of documents prepared, meeting attended, phone calls made and all electronic communication. That will become an administrative nightmare.
Finally the kicker, the proposed legislation will require DoD to make these reports publicly available on an internet website. Some call this transparency. Others call it intrusion. One thing for certain, it will drive down the market prices for retired Generals.
The full text of the proposed legislation can be accessed here.