Sole-source justifications for small-business contracts made permanent

Agencies should get used to justifying many sole-source contracts that they award to small business.

Regulatory officials announced the revision to the Federal Acquisition Regulation on April 18. It  requires an agency to make public the justification for an 8(a) small business sole-source contract prior to awarding it. The justification is required for awards worth more than $20 million, according to a Federal Register notice published on April 18.

The fiscal 2010 National Defense Authorization Act required the regulatory change. The justifications have been required under an interim rule since March 2011.

The justifications must include what the contract provides the agency and that it’s paying a fair price, the agency’s reason for avoiding competition, and proof that it is in the agency’s best interest.

The law doesn’t specify at which stage the agency needs to justify the decision, but officials wanted it come out before the contract negotiations begin.

About the Author

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

Featured

  • Comment
    Pilot Class. The author and Barbie Flowers are first row third and second from right, respectively.

    How VA is disrupting tech delivery

    A former Digital Service specialist at the Department of Veterans Affairs explains efforts to transition government from a legacy "project" approach to a more user-centered "product" method.

  • Cloud
    cloud migration

    DHS cloud push comes with complications

    A pressing data center closure schedule and an ensuing scramble to move applications means that some Homeland Security components might need more than one hop to get to the cloud.

  • Comment
    Blue Signage and logo of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

    Doing digital differently at VA

    The Department of Veterans Affairs CIO explains why digital transformation is not optional.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.