New deadline for conflict-of-interest comments

Acquisition officials are extending the period for soliciting comments about how to deal with service contractor employees’ personal conflicts of interest, according to a notice posted today.

Comments will be accepted through July 17, a Federal Register notice states. The previous deadline was May 27.

The Civilian Agency Acquisition Council and the Defense Acquisition Regulations Council said they want to determine how they should address personal conflicts of interest among employees of contractors that provide services to government agencies, the notice states. In a March 26 notice, the councils said they are considering adding conflict-of-interest clauses to contracts.

They also want to know whether experts believe greater disclosure of contractor practices, specific prohibitions or reliance on specified principles would work best in promoting ethical behavior, the notice states.

The councils have asked similar questions about organizational conflicts of interest. They are concerned about contractors’ financial conflicts, the need for impartiality, and the potential misuse of information and authority. Those problems could cause the public to lose confidence in the government and harm the government in other ways, the councils said in previous notices on dealing with conflicts of interest.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

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