Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) has introduced a resolution through the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to repeal the “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces” rule. The rule had required federal contractors to disclose violations and alleged violations of labor laws in the past three years. It had often been called the “blacklisting” rule. The House already passed a similar motion, and if the Senate approves, President Trump may sign it.
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has issued a new report, finding that the 2013 pilot program that expanded the whistleblower rights of contractors at civilian agencies against reprisal has been effective, but that some improvements are still needed. The watchdog found that some agencies did not forward investigations to the appropriate authorities, and that some contractors were unaware of the pilot program.
Coalition for Government Procurement President Roger Waldron looks at a deal made between the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Amazon Business to allow FEMA purchase card holders to “use a centralized DHS Amazon Business account for certain purchases.” Waldron writes that it’s understandable why FEMA would pursue such a deal, but that it raises “fundamental questions.” Waldron’s concerns include, among others: “Does the partnership constitute a government endorsement of a particular online service? Is the partnership a contract? If it is a contract, what was the process for competing/selecting the portal?”