Global Community | Recent Community Articles

Love was in the air this week with Valentine’s Day falling on Wednesday.  If all the chocolate and flowers distracted you from the latest and greatest in government contracting news, you’re in luck.  It’s time for our weekly roundup, the S mallGovCon Week in Review . In today’s edition, a California father-and-son team pleaded guilty to using false financial statements and other lies in order to win more than $4 million in federal contracts, one commentator says the Department of Homeland Security ...
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Public sector organizations may experience great benefit from business intelligence (BI) solutions, but not without diligence in the planning process to understand why they need it and which business challenges are to be solved. This was one of several themes discussed during Public Spend Forum's webinar on How to Buy Business Intelligence. Joined by panelists from Censeo Consulting Group, the webinar presented findings from a recent report on the marketplace for public sector BI technologies ...
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The Department of Interior’s fleet of drones are mostly hand-me-downs from the Department of Defense and cost less than a single one of its manned aircraft. They have been useful in jobs like dam inspections and wildlife surveys, cutting down the time to complete the task at a fraction of the cost. “Traditionally drones have been thought of as instruments of the military … ” said Mark Bathrick, director of the Office of Aviation Services at the Department of Interior. The agency, however, has ...
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Many purchasing executives are looking to drive procurement transformation, only to fall short. In this webinar, we’ll examine the key issues and provide recommendations for using data and analytics to help procurement to drive greater enterprise value.    Register today! #Upcoming
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When an agency solicits competitive proposals to establish multiple blanket purchase agreements, the agency may include “on-ramp” procedures to potentially award additional BPAs at a later date. In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO confirmed that the FAR allows agencies to use on-ramp procedures to add additional BPAs–and that on-ramped BPA holders don’t enjoy an inherent unfair competitive advantage, at least not under the facts at issue. The GAO’s decision in Al Baz 2000 General Trading ...
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I have  blogged several times  in the past few months on new, non-traditional IT vendors in the federal marketplace and how they are delivering IT services in a different way from traditional IT contractors. It's a sign of the growing presence of such contractors in the federal IT ecosystem that a number of them, with no fanfare, last summer created a sort of support group to help each other in the federal marketplace. The group originally used the non-descript moniker Community of Practice, ...
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Construction News reports that a supply chain squeeze will push up tender prices. They are anticipated to rise in 2018 owing to the supply chain being unable to support rising input costs, according to Mace’s cost consultancy arm. The company has revised its forecasts for tender price rises in 2018 to 1.5% nationally and 1% in London. Labour costs are expected to continue to rise as shortages of skills persist, while prices of key materials will increase further – especially steel. Read the ...
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An Edinburgh-based SME has landed a pivotal role in one of the UK’s largest recent public sector contracts that will see Glasgow evolve its digital city status, says Digital by Default . Scotland’s largest independent telecoms firm, Commsworld, has finalised a £30m contract to become a key provider within the seven-year Information and Communication Technology contract with Glasgow City Council. This will transform the city’s digital infrastructure bringing vast improvements in a Wide Area Network ...
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General Secretary of UK trade union Unison said in a letter to the Cabinet Office that in-house service provision should be the default option for public service delivery. He calls for a set of principles, similar to standards adopted in the 1990s, to be imposed on private contractors that deliver public works, “… to ensure that the driving force and prime consideration is the public, not the private interest.” He refers to the Nolan principles that were adopted in the ‘90s which were based ...
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The Irish Examiner reports that the State has sought to overhaul the system of public tenders with the aim of achieving better value for money. Chairman of Bid Services consultancy, in a critical review of the system, highlighted the high transaction costs, including heavy delays faced by those submitting tender proposals, and the relatively high level of leakage of business from the country. An in-depth analysis shows SMEs could gain €6.8bn in extra work and corporate tax revenues could rise ...
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Just under €30 million in direct orders were placed by public entities by three ministers over the past two years, procuring goods and services directly rather than by making a call for bids for open competition, according to information given in Parliament, says Times of Malta. Among them, Sports Malta, which runs the government’s sports facilities, has so far issued 19 direct orders to build a national shooting range. According to Finance Ministry rules and public procurement laws, direct ...
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An extraordinary session concerning the delayed modernisation of the Slovak military has taken place lasting eight hours. MPs and lawmakers of the ruling coalition have criticised delays. “… most of the planned procurements are already obsolete before they are delivered and military equipment and machinery have reached the end of their lifespan,” explains Slovak Spectator with the full story. The former defence minister suggested that the ministry has been using delaying tactics in replacing ...
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In January, the Swedish Government took steps to change its policy around IT outsourcing to private firms. It introduced rules, which will come into effect in April, to tighten security in IT outsourcing deals, affecting hundreds of outsourcing projects a year. From April, all government agencies with security-sensitive outsourcing projects, will have to have them scrutinised by either the Swedish Security Service (Säpo) or the Armed Forces. This move follows a public data leak last year when ...
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An SBA size appeal must be filed by someone “adversely affected by a size determination.”  Because parent and subsidiary companies are not directly affected by contracts bid upon by their corporate affiliates, those entities cannot file SBA size appeals on behalf of one another. In a recent size appeal decisions, OHA confirmed that a parent company cannot file a size appeal on behalf of a subsidiary. OHA’s decision in Size Appeal of Cliffdale Manufacturing, LLC , SBA No. SIZ-5879 (2018) involved ...
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An article in The Guardian last week caught our attention – it talks about how a northern England town turned around its failing financial situation by taking a ‘spending public money locally’ approach. This article is an opinion piece as opposed to ‘news,’ but it is interesting and thought-provoking for public sector minds.  In 2011 the city of Preston in Lancashire began to pursue a policy of spending public money locally. A big city redevelopment was supposed to be the ticket that turned ...
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It has been a cold week here in Lawrence, Kansas.  I hope everyone is staying warm.  It’s time to get some hot cocoa (or the Friday afternoon beverage of your choice) and enjoy the top government contracting news and notes for the week. This week’s news includes the release of the major Section 809 Panel’s first acquisition reform report, a Maryland company pays the government more than half a million dollars to settle False Claims Act allegations relating to unallowable costs, HHS agency officials ...
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In a major change in UK military policy, the emergency procurement of new equipment in response to field commanders to deal with emerging threats now has to be paid out of the UK Ministry of Defence’s own budget rather than from the UK Treasury’s (finance ministry's) reserve fund for crisis situations. This is a new procurement process revealed by the UK MOD to more rapidly acquire capabilities needed by troops deployed on operational missions. You can read more on Jane’s Defence Weekly – ...
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This week France’s defence ministry announced plans to raise its spending by more than 40% - from 34.2 billion euros in 2018 to 50 billion euros in 2025. The move is to bring it in line with NATO targets following complaints that the US accounts for 70% of combined NATO defence spending and shoulders most of the commitment. “The increase in funding will have to be balanced against commitments by (President) Macron to tackle French overspending, which has seen the country repeatedly break European ...
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In December the UK Technology and Construction Court ruled that the Ministry of Defence acted in breach of its obligations of transparency and equal treatment in rejecting a tender from the incumbent supplier of, and one of the bidders selected to tender for, port, maritime and logistical services to the Royal Navy. As a result, the planned contract award has been halted and the current contract extended while the MoD determines the way forward. Lexology explains the reasoning behind the MOD’s ...
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Entries are invited for this global award in contract management which recognises the personal initiative of an individual practitioner who has shown outstanding leadership or endeavor in the field of contract or commercial management. The IACCM Contracting Excellence Awards are open to all contract and commercial practitioners globally, across all sectors. You can self-nominate, or nominate others. Entries are due by 17.00 GMT on March 16th, 2018. For more details visit IACCM website here. ...
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