Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Second National Dialogue to Improve Federal Procurement

The Office of Federal Procurement Policy has launched its second National Dialogue to improve the federal procurement and grants processes with the objective of reducing reporting compliance costs for Federal contractors and grantees. The Agency is looking for ideas on how to reduce the costs associated with obtaining and managing tax dollars awarded through Federal contracts, grants, subcontracts, and sub-awards. The dialogue will be open for two years and if you register, you can comment on or share thoughts on emerging ideas and identify those you believe to be most impactful.

Last year's campaign ended May 2014. Click here to read the results of that dialogue. 118 ideas were posted, 190 comments were received. 548 people/organizations registered. The sharing of EVMS certification reviews that we discussed a couple of weeks ago (see Plans for Reducing the Number of EVMS Certification Reviews) came out of last year's open dialogue.

The popular suggestions in this year's campaign so far, include the following. You can read more detail for each of these by visiting the National Dialogue website:

  • Raising the micro-purchase threshold from $3,000 to $10,000. The lower threshold creates a cost of compliance that far exceeds any potential reduction in waste, fraud and abuse that might occur from establishing a higher threshold.
  • Require agencies to adopt common research terms and conditions. While NSF, NIH, DOE, NASA, and other agencies have adopted common research terms and conditions, some agencies have opted out. the Council on Government Relations has recommended that the opt-out option be eliminated.
  • Eliminate prime recipient monitoring of subs-recipients subject to audit. Where a subrecipient has a current Single Audit report, prime recipients should be able to rely on the subrecipient's auditors and cognizant agency oversight for routine audit follow-up and management decisions.
  • Common Federal proposal and award management system. Consolidate federal proposal and award management systems, including payment systems, optimally with significant input from stakeholders.

Contractors are encouraged to participate in this dialogue, if nothing more than casting votes for what will make their jobs easier and reduce the cost of compliance.

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