Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Some "Simplified Acquisition Procedures" Thresholds to Increase

FAR (Federal Acquisition Regulations) Part 13 covers "simplified acquisition procedures" for purchasing supplies and services. The purpose of "simplified acquisition procedures" is to (i) reduce the Government's and the prospective contractors administrative costs, (ii) improve opportunities for small, small disadvantaged, women-owned, veteran-owned, HUBZone, and service-disabled veteran-owned small business concerns to obtain a fair proportion of Government contract, (iii) promote efficiency and economy in contracting, and (iv) avoid unnecessary burdens for agencies and contractors.

These streamlined procedures for acquiring goods and services are especially beneficial to small businesses where in most cases, the requirements are reserved for companies in SBA's 8(a) program, HUBZone companies, SDVOSBs and WOSBs.

There is a dollar threshold for using simplified acquisition procedures. Currently, that threshold is $150,000 with two exceptions. The first exception applies when acquisition of supplies or services that are determined by the head of the agency  to support a contingency operation or to facilitate defense against or recovery from nuclear, biological, chemical or radiological attack. The threshold for that category of purchases is $300,000. The second applies to contracts awarded and performed, or purchase to be made, outside the United States meeting the same criteria. That threshold is $1 million.

The FAR Councils have just proposed a change to the exception thresholds.  For domestic contingency operations, the threshold, if enacted, will more than double from $300,000 to $750,000. For international contingency operations, the threshold will increase from $1 million to $1.5 million.

There is little doubt that these threshold will not be implemented as they are based on statutory provisions in this year's (Fiscal Year 2016) NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act).

Refer to FAR Part 13 for more details on "Simplified Acquisition Procedures".

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