Contract database to start

Federal Register publication

A new rule says federal agencies must submit information on governmentwide award contracts and other contracting vehicles to a central database.

The rule, published today, amends the Federal Acquisition Regulation to make contracting officers and program managers aware of the online database. It requires agencies to submit information about the award of contracts intended for use by multiple agencies, including General Services Administration schedules.

The database is designed to let agency officials quickly research contracts and identify the vendors involved. Agencies have until October 31 to enter data about existing contracts, except those that expire before June 1, 2004. When awarding new contracts, agencies have 10 days from the date of award to file the information.

Contracting officers can use the data to find the best source for purchases based on prices, administrative fees and other factors.

The database probably won't be much help to vendors, said Eric Adolphe, chief executive officer at Optimus Corp., a small federal contractor in Silver Spring, Md.

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