Category Archives: GAO

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GAO Sides with Foreign Military Sales Program Contractors in Dispute Over Protest Costs

Contractors engaged in procurements under the Foreign Military Sales ("FMS") program can breathe a little easier after a Government Accountability Office ("GAO") ruling on November 5, 2009, in which the GAO denied the U.S. Army Material Command’s ("Army’s") assertion that a contractor is not entitled to reimbursement for its protest costs associated with an FMS … Continue Reading

GAO Allowed to Interview Current Contractor Employees During the Audit of the Contractor’s Records

In an attempt to promote "protection" and "provide transparency," the FAR Councils recently issued a final rule formally mandating Government Accountability Office ("GAO") auditor access to interview contractor personnel during an audit of the contractor’s records.  This final rule published on October 14, 2009 adopted, without change, an interim rule issued March 31, 2009, implementing section 871 of … Continue Reading

GAO Rejects “Aggregate” Valuation Method for Determining Qualification Under the Omnibus Diplomatic Security and Antiterrorism Act

In Caddell Constr. Co., Inc., B-401596, et al, Sept. 21, 2009, the GAO sustained a protest against the pre-qualification of a vendor on the grounds that the Department of State’s (DOS) determination that the vendor satisfied the qualification requirements of the Omnibus Diplomatic Security and Antiterrorism Act of 1986 (Security Act) was unreasonable. The GAO recommended … Continue Reading

What Exactly Is DCAA Thinking?

Recently, contractors have begun receiving formal requests for information from the Defense Contract Audit Agency (“DCAA”). The purported purpose of these requests is to “[o]btain an understanding of the management control environment” of major government contractors. In pursuit of this goal, DCAA has crafted a letter that demands, among other things, the following: A list … Continue Reading

The President Admits the Stimulus Is Not Working as Hoped. Well, Duh.

The Administration has conceded that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (“ARRA”) has not worked as planned. With unemployment numbers continuing to climb, the Administration now acknowledges it “misread the economy.” But from the beginning not everyone believed ARRA would achieve the desired stimulative effect. After all, $787 billion cannot be disbursed without some complication.  … Continue Reading

New Recovery Act Rules Implement Provisions Relating To Government Audit Access, Whistleblower Protections, And Buy American Requirements; Much Confusion Remains

On March 31, 2009, the FAR Councils issued several new interim rules (effective March 31, 2009) implementing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (P.L. 111-5) (also known as ARRA, The Recovery Act, or the Stimulus Act). See Federal Acquisition Circular (FAC) 2005-32, published at 74 Federal Register 14621-14652. The FAC issued new interim rules on … Continue Reading

Identifying Viable Post-Award Bid Protest Allegations At The GAO

The Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) denies more than three quarters of all bid protests decided on the merits. Certain categories of protests, however, tend to be more successful than others.  Three of our Government Contracts lawyers – Keith Szeliga, Marko Kipa, and Daniel Marcinak – recently published an article that assists protestors in identifying such allegations. Among … Continue Reading

New DCAA Guidelines Severely Restrict Auditor Authority To Exercise Judgment In Audit Of Internal Controls

On December 19, 2008 DCAA issued new guidance for audit of and reporting on internal controls that — in two short pages of sometimes cryptic text — (a) redefines the agency’s approach to the critical concepts of "significant deficiency" and "material weakness" in internal controls and (b) establishes new criteria for auditor reports of deficiencies in … Continue Reading

Glass Houses and Stones – Does Anyone in Government Ever Try to Connect the Dots?

In its 2008 report on the Government’s financial consolidated statements released on December 15, the Government Accountability Office criticized “serious financial management problems at the Department of Defense, the federal government’s inability to adequately account for and reconcile intragovernmental activity and balances between federal agencies, and the federal government’s ineffective process for preparing the consolidated … Continue Reading

So You Lost – Now What? A Vacationer’s Guide to GAO Bid Protests

Determining whether to challenge the award of a contract to a competitor can be a daunting decision for a federal government contractor.  This article seeks to make that decision more manageable by providing an overview of the bid protest process and by suggesting several factors a contractor should consider in determining whether to protest an … Continue Reading
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