First things first, I’m sorry about the title; I couldn’t resist. The longer, alternate title would have been “Rest In Peace – the Past Performance Information Retrieval System Sleeps with the Fishes.” But that doesn’t have the same kind of obscure, punchy, epitaph-type quality that I’m aiming for. So instead, I give you get a garbled mess of an acronym to remind us that the Past Performance Information Retrieval System (“PPIRS”) – the system once used by the U.S. Government to house the final performance assessments for government contractors – is no more. As far as epitaphs go, I think that most of us would agree that “R.I.P.” is just about what an acronym deserves.
Continue Reading R.I.P. PPIRS

Contractors and government contracts attorneys are likely to see (if they haven’t already) a rise in the number of cases in which individuals, rather than corporate entities, are targeted by government officials for suspension and debarment.  This is significant because, under the FAR, the misconduct of an individual can be imputed to the contractor, causing the contractor to lose its ability to receive Federal contracts.
Continue Reading Suspension and Debarment: A New Government Approach

The upward trend of suspensions and debarments continued in FY 2014.  According to the Interagency Suspension and Debarment Committee (“ISDC”) Report to Congress, released March 31, 2015, while referrals to the suspending and debarring officials decreased 12% from FY 2013, suspensions, debarments, and proposed debarments increased, Government-wide, by almost 8%. Since the ISDC began collecting data in 2009, these actions have continued to increase markedly.
Continue Reading Suspensions and Debarments on the Rise – A Brief Review of the ISDC’s FY 2014 Stats

By David Gallacher 

Over the last few years, there has been a significant push to consolidate all contractor information into central locations, and also to ensure that all performance-related information is updated and current (allowing the government customers to have access to the latest and greatest information about how a contractor has performed). Two recent rules – one final and the other proposed – are further implementing this grand plan. See 78 Fed. Reg. 46783 (August 1, 2013) and 78 Fed. Reg. 48123 (August 7, 2013). The final rule standardizes and further clarifies the government’s internal administrative obligations with regard to past performance evaluations, but the new proposed rule will shrink from 30 days to 14 days the period of time that a contractor has to comment on a past performance evaluation. Going forward, contractors will need to be quick on the trigger to ensure that they monitor their past performance evaluations and respond in a timely manner.


Continue Reading Quick on the Trigger – Period for Contractors to Comment on Past Performance Evaluations Will Shrink from 30 Days to 14 Days

By Bruce Shirk and David Gallacher

In March 2010, the U.S. Government rolled out a new tool promised to provide a centralized source for all publicly available contractor past performance and integrity information – the Federal Performance and Integrity Information System (“FAPIIS”). We have written multiple times about it (in June 2010, March 2011, and January 2012), including the importance of monitoring the information entered to ensure that past performance evaluations are accurate, complete, and fair, and also to prevent release of proprietary information to the public. But the system continues to evolve and, as contractors try to manage the information in FAPIIS, many companies find the process baffling due to (among other things) the multiplicity of modules within the system and the acronyms used to identify them. In fairness, government personnel tasked with implementing FAPIIS have developed on-line training to assist contractors in navigating this complex system. That said, not everyone involved in government contracting can or will take the training, but everyone does need a basic understanding of FAPIIS. So keep reading, because you won’t find this information in the FAR.


Continue Reading Deciphering the Alphabet Soup – FAPIIS, CPARS, and PPIRS; Don’t Look For All This In The FAR

By Jonathan S. Aronie

There is a theory in physics that a seemingly isolated event in one part of the world can have a significant, downstream impact in another. They (the Physics set) call it the Butterfly Effect. It’s a central element of something called Chaos Theory (referenced by Jeff Goldblum in the original “Jurassic Park”), and you can see it in action in all walks of life. Even in Government contracting.
 


Continue Reading Did A Butterfly Just Flap Its Wings?The Potential Industry-Wide Consequences Of The SBA’s Recent Suspension Of A Premier IT Contractor