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Proposed Rule

Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) and Governmentwide Requirements for Drug-Free Workplace (Grants)

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCIES:

Office of Personnel Management; Department of Agriculture; Department of Energy; Small Business Administration; National Aeronautics and Space Administration; Department of Commerce; Social Security Administration; Office of National Drug Control Policy; Department of State; Agency for International Development; Peace Corps; Inter-American Foundation; African Development Foundation; Department of Labor; Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service; Department of Defense; Department of Education; National Archives and Records Administration; Department of Veterans Affairs; Environmental Protection Agency; General Services Administration; Department of the Interior; Federal Emergency Management Agency; Department of Health and Human Services; National Science Foundation; National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, Institute of Museum and Library Services; Corporation for National and Community Service, and Department of Transportation.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking.

SUMMARY:

This document proposes substantive changes and amendments to the governmentwide nonprocurement common rule for debarment and suspension and the governmentwide rule implementing the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988. The most significant changes are—

First, this proposed common rule on debarment and suspension would limit the mandatory lower tier application of an exclusion to the first procurement level under a nonprocurement covered transaction. If an agency decides that its nonprocurement activities are sufficiently vulnerable to misconduct, poor performance or abuse at levels below the first procurement, the agency may add agency-specific language to the proposed common rule to prohibit lower-tier procurement transactions with excluded persons. Agencies that do not have sufficient vulnerability at lower levels to justify the devotion of resources to enforce exclusions at lower levels need not add language to the common rule.

Second, this proposed common rule on debarment and suspension would set the dollar threshold on prohibited lower-tier procurement transactions with excluded persons at $25,000. This should help clarify an ambiguity in the current common rule created when Congress, in enacting the Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act of 1994, elected to change the terminology in the direct Federal acquisition law from “small purchase threshold” to “simplified acquisition threshold” and increased the level from $25,000 to Start Printed Page 3267$100,000. The ambiguity was created because the current common rule is linked to the small purchase threshold fixed at 10 U.S.C. 2304(g) and 41 U.S.C. 253(g), but states the current level to be $25,000.

Third, both this proposed rule on debarment and suspension and the proposed rule on drug-free workplace requirements would eliminate the mandate for agencies and participants to obtain written certifications from awardees or persons with whom they propose to enter into covered transactions. The proposed rules will allow agencies and participants the flexibility to use other means if they so choose, such as award conditions or electronic access to the GSA List on the internet, to enforce compliance with the rules.

Fourth, the proposed rule on drug-free workplace requirements would be separated from this proposed rule on debarment and suspension. The drug-free workplace requirements currently are in subpart F of the Debarment and Suspension Nonprocurement Common Rule. Moving those requirements to a separate part will allow them to appear in a more appropriate location nearer other requirements used predominately by award officials.

Finally, this document is prepared in plain language text and format to make it easier to read and use.

Under the provisions of section 7(o) of the Department of Housing and Urban Development Act (42 U.S.C. 2535(o)), any Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) proposed or interim rule that is issued for public comment is subjec to pre-publication Congressional review for a period of 15 days. Therefore, HUD is not joining in today's publication but will propose the common amendments in a separate rulemaking.

DATES:

Comments must be received on or before March 25, 2002.

ADDRESSES:

Comments on these proposed rules should be addressed to: Robert F. Meunier, Office of Grants and Debarment (3901-R), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20460. Comments may be submitted via e-mail (meunier.robert@epa.gov), but must be made in the text of the message and not as an attachment.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Robert F. Meunier, Debarring Official, Environmental Protection Agency, by phone at (202) 564-5399 or by e-mail (meunier.robert@epa.gov). Information about the Interagency Committee on Debarment and Suspension can be found on their home page (http://www.dot.gov/​ost/​m60/​grant/​net.htm). A chart showing where each agency has codified the common rule may be obtained by accessing the Office of Management and Budget's home page (http://www.whitehouse.gov/​omb), under the heading “Grants Management.”

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

A. Background

Executive Order 12549, “Debarment and Suspension,” issued February 18, 1986 (3 CFR 1986 Comp., p. 189) authorized a governmentwide system for debarment and suspension under Federal nonprocurement activities. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) published initial guidelines to all Executive branch agencies in 1986 and the agencies published a common rule on May 26, 1988 (53 FR 19160). The common rule provides uniform requirements for debarment and suspension by Executive branch agencies to protect assistance, loans, benefits and other nonprocurement activities from waste, fraud, abuse and poor performance, similar to the system used for Federal procurement activities under Subpart 9.4 of the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR).

On January 31, 1989, the agencies amended the common rule by adding a new subpart F to implement the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988. (See 54 FR 4946.)

On August 16, 1989, Executive Order 12689, “Debarment and Suspension,” (3 CFR 1989 Comp., p. 235) directed agencies to reconcile technical differences existing between the procurement and nonprocurement debarment systems, and to give exclusions under either system reciprocal effect across procurement and nonprocurement activities. In 1994 Congress passed the Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act of 1994 (Public Law 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327) mandating reciprocity for exclusions issued under the procurement and nonprocurement debarment systems.

On April 12, 1999, OMB asked the Interagency Suspension and Debarment Committee (ISDC) to review the common rule and propose amendments that would: (a) resolve unnecessary technical differences between the procurement and nonprocurement systems; (b) revise the current rule in a plain language style and format; and (c) make other improvements to the common rule consistent with the purpose of the suspension and debarment system. The ISDC's proposed amendments form the basis of this Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.

Format of the Proposed Debarment and Suspension Common Rule

The proposed rule adopts a different approach to the structure and format of the common rule. It is formatted so that matters common to a particular class of readers, or to a particular subject, appear together. This allows readers easy access to information that may be of particular importance to them. The rule also contains tables and a chart to assist the reader in locating or clarifying information presented in the text of the rule.

The proposed rule uses fewer legal terms, and uses more commonly understood words along with shorter sentences. It also presents information in a question-and-answer format. Wherever possible, the rule uses the active voice.

Due to the new format of the proposed rule, requirements would appear in a different order than they do under the current common rule. The following table will assist you in locating and comparing the requirements under both rules.

Proposed nonprocurement debarment and suspension common rule sectionsCurrent nonprocurement debarment and suspension common rule sections
_.25none
_.50none
_.75none
Subpart A:
_.100_.100
_.105none
_.110_.100, _.115
_.115_.200
_.120_.215
_.125_.110(c)
_.130_.110(c)
_.135_.110(a)
_.140_.210
_.145_.105 (ineligible)
Subpart B:
_.200_.110(a)
_.205_.225
_.210_.110(a)(1)
_.215_.110(a)(2)
_.220_.110(a)(1)(ii)
_.225none
Subpart C:
_.300_.220(b), _.225
_.305_.220(b)
_.310_.220
_.315_.510
_.320_.225
_.325_.510
_.330_.510, Appendix A
_.335_.510, Appendix B
_.340Appendix A, Appendix B
_.345_.510(c)
_.350_.510(c)
_.355_.510, Appendix B
_.360_.510(c)
Subpart D:
_.400_.200, _.215
_.405_.200(a)
Start Printed Page 3268
_.410_.200(b)
_.415_.220
_.420_.200(b)
_.425_.505(d), (e)
_.430_.505(d), (e)
_.435_.115(a), _.510
_.440 [Reserved]
_.445_.225(b)
_.450_.510 Appendix A
_.455_.510 Appendix B
Subpart E:
_.500_.105, _.500
_.505_.505, _.510
_.510_.105, _.500
_.515_.500
_.520_.505
_.525_.505(c)
_.530none
Subpart F:
_.600_.311, _.410(a)
_.605_.300, _.400
_.610_.310, _.410
_.615_.312, _.411
_.620_.115
_.625_.325, _.420
_.630_.325, _.420
_.635_.315
_.640_.315
_.645_.315
Subpart G:
_.700_.400(a) & (b)
_.705 (a)_.400(c)
_.705 (b)_.412(b)(1)(i) & _.413(a)
_.705 (c)none
_.710none
_.715_.411
_.720_.412(a)
_.725(a)_.412(a)
_.725(b)_.105, definition of Notice, second sentence; none
_.730none
_.735_.412(b), _.413(b), none
_.740(a)_.410(b)
_.740(b)_.412(b)
_.745_.413(b)(1), _.412(b)(2)
_.750_.413(b)
_.755_.413(a) & (c)
_.760_.415
Subpart H:
_.800_.305
_.805_.312
_.810none
_.815_.313(a)
_.820_.313(a); _.105, definition of Notice, none
_.825none
_.830_.313(b), _.314(b), none
_.835_.310
_.840_.313(b)
_.845none, _.314(a) & (b)(1)
_.850_.314(c)(1)
_.855_.314(c)(2), none
_.860none, See 48 CFR 9.406-1(a)
_.865_.320(a)
_.870_.314(a) & (d)
_.875_.320(c)
_.880_.320(c)
_.885_.320(b)
Subpart I_Definitions:
_.900-_.1020_.105

Reconciliation of Technical Differences

The proposed rule incorporates some changes that are designed to bring the procurement and nonprocurement debarment rules into greater conformity with each other. However, the ISDC recommended against issuing a single consolidated rule, or adopting uniform application of the rule as impractical and confusing. This decision was based on the ISDC's view that the procurement and nonprocurement communities have sufficiently different relationships with participants, distinct methods to procure services or to provide benefits or support, varying options for dealing with waste, fraud, abuse, and poor performance, and very different types of exposure to risk.

The ISDC therefore focused its attention on ensuring that both the procurement and nonprocurement rules contained the same level of substantive due process in: (a) Applying the same minimum criteria to suspend or propose debarment; (b) notifying respondents of actions; (c) making a record to support a decision; (d) providing for fact-finding; (e) addressing mitigating and other factors; (f) applying evidentiary standards; and (g) issuing decisions.

Section _.220 of the proposed rule would bring the common rule into closer conformity with the FAR by limiting the mandatory down-tier application of an exclusion under the common rule to the first procurement level. Unless Federal consent is required at a lower level, if an agency wishes to apply an exclusion at levels lower than the first procurement level (e.g., to subcontractors or suppliers), the agency must specifically include that option in its published version of the common rule. The ISDC recommended this change because it recognizes that some agencies' nonprocurement transactions are highly vulnerable to the impact of misconduct and poor performance at levels below the first procurement, while other agencies' transactions are not. This approach allows those Federal agencies with vulnerability at lower tiers to prohibit those transactions, while providing flexibility to those agencies whose programs' exposure does not merit the additional administrative burden of enforcing exclusions at lower tiers.

In addition, the threshold level for application of an exclusion for all procurement-type transactions under a nonprocurement transaction would be set at $25,000. This corrects confusion created when the term “small purchase threshold,” formerly found at 10 U.S.C. 2304(g) and 41 U.S.C. 403(11) (set at $25,000), was changed under the Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act of 1994 to “simplified acquisition threshold” and set at $100,000. Because the current common rule uses the “small purchase threshold,” as the point beneath which an exclusion does not apply, it has caused confusion as to whether the exclusion level is $25,000 or $100,000. The procurement debarment system has already made regulatory changes to subpart 9.4 of the FAR to keep its exclusion level at $25,000.

In addition to “suspension” and “debarment,” the common rule recognizes a status called “voluntary exclusion.” Subpart 9.4 of the FAR makes no reference to such a status. The status of voluntary exclusion is a remnant from older rules and practices in the nonprocurement community that pre-date the Governmentwide suspension and debarment system. It was once used because respondents found the “voluntary” nature of the prohibition to be more acceptable. It was, in fact, a special term used for those who accepted ineligibility pursuant to an administrative agreement. The ISDC found that there are benefits to the nonprocurement community in retaining the ability of Federal agencies to accept voluntary exclusion agreements in place of debarment or suspension. However, with the creation of the Governmentwide system, voluntary exclusion agreements that offer protection only to the agency initiating action in the matter, are inconsistent with the purposes of the Governmentwide system. Accordingly, under the proposed rule agencies may still negotiate voluntary exclusion agreements; however, those exclusions must apply equally to all Federal agencies.

Section _.860 of the proposed rule is new to the common rule. This section identifies factors that a debarring official may regard as mitigating or aggravating factors. It includes factors that currently appear under § 9.406-1(a) of the FAR. These factors currently offer useful guidance to the Government and contractors with respect to matters the Start Printed Page 3269debarring official should consider in making a debarment decision.

Enhancements to the Proposed Debarment and Suspension Common Rule

This proposed rule would make several modifications to the existing common rule to enhance the effectiveness of, cure some gaps in, or clarify requirements and processes under the existing rule. None of these changes are intended to alter the fundamental principles inherent to debarment and suspension actions. All information related to the purposes and procedures applicable to the current rule as reflected in its preambles at 53 FR 19160-19171 (May 26, 1988), and 60 FR 33036-33040 (June 26, 1995), shall continue to apply under this proposed and/or any final rule unless otherwise stated, or inconsistent with these provisions. Therefore, notwithstanding the technical existence of any cause for debarment, affiliation, imputable conduct, or other actionable condition, debarment or suspension may not be used to punish. Nor may it be used to coerce a respondent into accepting criminal, civil or administrative sanctions. An agency may address its legitimate suspension and debarment concerns before, after or in conjunction with sanctions, so long as suspension or debarment is otherwise appropriate to protect the Federal Government. In all cases, suspending and debarring officials must use business judgment and discretion in electing to use the suspension and debarment authority under this rule to protect government activities from potential waste, fraud, abuse, poor performance and non-compliance with applicable laws, regulations or conditions related to nonprocurement transactions. Where an agency has the authority to act under either the procurement or nonprocurement rule, it may act under either rule to avoid confusion or duplication.

The proposed rule would move definitions from Subpart A of the current rule to Subpart I. Under the proposed rule, a new term is used to refer to ineligibility that arises from sources other than discretionary actions taken under either the common rule or subpart 9.4 of the FAR. This type of ineligibility may arise by operation of a statute, executive order, or other directive and may not be subject to the discretion of the agency suspending or debarring official. In addition, it may have special attributes that are inconsistent with the discretionary actions initiated under the common rule or the FAR. For example, persons convicted under the Clean Air Act or Clean Water Act are automatically ineligible for procurement and nonprocurement participation at the violating facility which gave rise to the conviction until the EPA Debarring Official certifies that the conditions giving rise to the conviction have been corrected. The proposed rule refers to these and other special forms of ineligibility as “disqualifications.” Disqualifications must be listed on the General Services Administration (GSA), List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified from Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs (List), but are not subject to the uniform procedural requirements of this rule. (Note that agencies with special provisions related to disqualification may, at their option, include those requirements in subpart J or other subparts appended to this rule as a convenience to the agency or the public.) For discretionary actions that result in ineligibility under the uniform suspension and debarment procedures covered by the common rule and the FAR, this proposed rule uses the term “exclusion.” Therefore, an ineligibility may result from either a disqualification or an exclusion.

The proposed rule adds a new definition for “agent or representative” as is used under the FAR and clarifies the definition of “participant.” It also proposes a more useful definition of the types of activities that are encompassed within the term “principal.”

The term “voluntary exclusion” is narrowed under this proposed rule to conform to the principles of governmentwide protection and give it the same scope of coverage as other exclusions.

One significant change to the definitions under the proposed common rule relates to the term “conviction.” Previously, the common rule defined conviction as a judgment that had to be “entered” by the court before it was recognized as constituting a ground for suspension or debarment. In recent years, courts have used many vehicles to conclude criminal matters short of “entry” of a judgment of conviction, such as probation before judgment, pre-trial diversion, and simply withholding final judgment upon satisfaction of certain conditions in lieu of incarceration or payment of a fine. Currently, the withholding of entry of the judgment in a criminal matter often means that a respondent remains under a temporary suspension until criminal proceedings are concluded. This does not benefit either the government or the respondent because the government is unable to conclude the matter by final decision or with a compliance agreement with any certainty that a baseline for risk assessment can be finally established. From a business point of view, the withholding of an “entry” of judgment under these conditions should not preclude Federal agencies from taking appropriate action to protect the government. It makes no sense for an agency to have to prove the underlying misconduct or conditions all over again, merely because the court decided not to “enter” its judgment. Under the proposed rule, the suspending or debarring official would be able to consider criminal matters resolved by means short of dismissal as final so that appropriate administrative action can be taken, or a remedial plan of compliance concluded. This change would benefit both the government and a respondent.

The proposed rule would significantly clarify confusion under the existing rule as to who may be suspended or debarred and the impact of that decision on a suspended or debarred person. An agency may exclude any “person” as defined in the rule that may be reasonably expected to participate in a “covered transaction” (see § _.135).

Even if a person is excluded, agencies could still award a covered transaction to that person when it is in the best interest of the government to do so. The proposed rule sets forth more clearly the two situations that allow an otherwise excluded person to participate in a nonprocurement transaction. The first is when an agency grants an exception to the excluded person to participate in a covered transaction (see § _.120). Exceptions are transaction-specific decisions that the designated agency official must justify in writing. The second situation that allows an excluded person to participate in a transaction is when an agency is entering into an exempt transaction (see § _.215). Exempt transactions have special status and are not regarded as covered transactions. Exempt transactions may or may not be transaction-specific, and do not require the written justification of a designated agency official before entering into them. Each agency is responsible for clarifying the applicability or non-applicability of an exemption to any of its transactions in its agency-specific rule.

Proposed § _.215 contains a new exemption that has been added at paragraph (e). This exemption is proposed because most often the transactions listed within this paragraph are regulatory vehicles that should not be automatically precluded to an otherwise excluded person. In cases Start Printed Page 3270where an agency uses a “permit,” “license” or other similar transaction to approve or authorize government-regulated activity, but desires to subject issuance of the transaction to the GSA List, it must do so in its regulations or other guidance.

Sections _.615, _.715 and _.805 of the proposed rule would amend the notice provisions of the existing rule. The proposed rule would authorize an agency to use facsimile and e-mail to notify a respondent of debarment or suspension actions affecting that person. The proposed modification to the existing rule would recognize the advances made in communications technology since the original rule was published and would provide a better system for confirming receipt of notices that were sent.

The current common rule identifies the two conclusions that a suspending official must make before imposing a suspension. While the current rule provides some guidance as to how a suspending official may conclude that “adequate evidence” of a cause for action may exist, it is silent as to how the official may conclude that “immediate action” is necessary to protect the public interest. The proposed rule would add information at § _.705(c) that reflects the court's decision in Coleman American Moving Services, Inc. v. Weinberger, 716 F. Supp. 1405 (M. D. Ala. 1989), that a suspending official need not make a separate and specific finding as to immediate need, but may reach that conclusion from inferences reasonably drawn from the facts and circumstances present.

Also, § _.735 of the proposed rule would authorize the suspending official to preclude fact-finding where a State attorney general's office, State or local prosecutor advises that conducting fact-finding would prejudice substantial interests of the State or local government in pending or contemplated legal proceedings based upon the same facts as the suspension. This language is necessary to close a gap in the current rule that allows a Federal agency to suspend on the basis of a Federal, State or local indictment, but only addresses denial of fact-finding in the context of advice received from Federal officials. In suspension and debarment matters, there is no distinction made between indictments issued at the Federal, state or local level. All indictments for alleged misconduct relevant to nonprocurement and procurement risks provide a basis for Federal concern. Therefore, where the prospect of an administrative fact-finding proceeding could prejudice the outcome of a matter at the state or local level, the suspending official must have the same authority to deny fact-finding to protect those proceedings as for matters based upon actions initiated at the Federal level. Accordingly, §§ _.735 and _.760 of the proposed rule would reflect equality of treatment to be given to our respective levels of government in suspension matters.

Proposed §§ _.730 and _.825 would identify information that a respondent must provide the suspending or debarring official when contesting a suspension or proposed debarment. This information is relevant to the official's decision and is frequently requested during the presentation of matters in opposition. By highlighting this requirement in the rule, a respondent can be prepared in advance to address the issue at the time of the respondent's initial written submission, or during the oral presentation if one is made. These sections of the proposed rule also clarify that a general denial of allegations contained in the notice of action is insufficient to establish a genuine dispute over a material fact. A suspending or debarring official can only determine if a respondent is entitled to a fact-finding proceeding if the respondent's submission in opposition contains enough specific information to identify the issue in question and establish a basis for dispute.

Section _.515(b) of the proposed rule includes additional information to be contained on the GSA List or within its database. Under the current rule, other than the name and address of an excluded person, there is currently insufficient information on the List or in the GSA database that can be used to confirm the identity of a listed person under a commonly used name. Confirmation requires contact with the designated Federal official by telephone or other means, a search of records if available, and confirmation in accordance with that agency's Routine Use Notice. The proposed rule would permit the database for the electronic version of the GSA List to include a field for Taxpayer Identification Numbers (TINs) and Social Security Numbers (SSNs) if legally appropriate. The List and current database contains names of individuals, business entities and organizations that can be the same or confusingly similar. The current commercial world uses TINs and SSNs widely and freely to confirm identities for all kinds of transactions.

The proposed rule would position GSA to compile that information in the event the law should allow public access to it. Otherwise, the current system will remain commercially inefficient. We specifically invite comment on the proposed inclusion of this provision in the common rule.

The proposed rule would also eliminate a requirement under the current rule that the exclusions be enforced through a chain of paper certifications submitted to an agency or between participants under a covered transaction. Certification as a means of enforcement has proven to be administratively awkward and impossible for some transactions that do not even involve an “award.” Advancements in technology allow anyone with access to a personal computer to receive up-to-date information about a person's eligibility by accessing the GSA list on line. This makes the certification process largely obsolete. The proposed rule would allow agencies to employ any method of enforcement of the GSA List that is administratively and commercially feasible. This change is consistent with Congress' intent under the Federal Acquisition Reform Act of 1994 (Public Law 104-208), to eliminate unnecessary certifications.

Proposed Separate Part To Implement the Drug-Free Workplace Act

Finally, this document proposes to establish a separate part for the drug-free workplace requirements that are in subpart F of the existing rule. The only requirement of the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988 that relates to suspension and debarment is incorporated into the causes for debarment. The remaining provisions of subpart F are used predominantly by recipients of Federal assistance awards and by Federal officials who make and administer those awards, which distinguishes them from the common rule that is used mainly by Federal suspension and debarment officials and respondents. Moving the requirements of the current subpart F into a part separate from the common rule allows each Federal agency to place it in an appropriate location within the Code of Federal Regulations where it may be more easily used by recipients and Federal awarding and administering officials.

The proposed separate part to incorporate the provisions of Subpart F, like the proposed update to the debarment and suspension common rule, is reformatted and rewritten in plain language. Due to the proposed reformatting, requirements would appear in a different order than they do in the current Subpart F. The following table will assist you in locating and comparing the requirements under both rules. Start Printed Page 3271

Proposed drug-free workplace common rule sectionsCurrent drug-free workplace common rule sections
.100.600(a)
.105(a)(1).610(a)
.105(a)(2)none
.105(b)none
.110.610(b)
.115.600(b)
.200.630(a)(1)
.200(a)certification alt I. A. (g)
.200(b)certification alt I. B.
.205(a)certification alt I. A. (a)
.205(b)certification alt I. A. (a)
.205(c)certification alt I. A. (d)
.210certification alt I. A. (c)
.215certification alt I. A. (b)
.220.630 (e)
.225(a).635 (a)(1)
.225(a)certification alt I. A. (e)
.225(b).635(a)(2)
.225(b)certification alt I. A. (f)
.230(a)appendix C. 5
.230(b)Appendix C. 6
.230(c)Appendix C. 7
.300.630(a)(1)
.300certification alt II.
.300(b).635(b)
.400(a)none
.400(b)none
.500.615(b)
.505.615(c)
.510.620(a)
.510
.515.625
.605.605(b)(7)
.610.605(b)(1)
.615.605(b)(2)
.620none
.625.605(b)(3)
.630D&S common rule
.635.605(b)(4)
.640.605(b)(5)
.645.605(b)(6)
.650none
.655.605(b)(9)
.660.605(b)(8)
.665.605(b)(10)
.670D&S common rule
.600(a)(1)
.600(a)(2)
.610(c)
.615(a)
D&S common rule.620(b)
.630(a)(2)
.630(b)
.630(c)
.630(d)
Appendix C. 1
Appendix C. 3
Appendix C. 4
Appendix C. 8

The proposed separate part would make one substantive change to the current subpart F. The proposed substantive change would require Federal agencies to obtain recipients' assurances of compliance with drug-free workplace requirements and not require them to obtain certifications from recipients. This substantive change implements section 809 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1998 (Public Law 105-85, 111 Stat. 1838-1839) that amended the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988. The body of the proposed separate part therefore includes the substantive requirements for recipients that now are in the text of the drug-free workplace certification in appendix C to the common rule.

The proposed separate part also would make some definitional changes to the current subpart F. First, it includes a definition of “debarment,” since it no longer would be a subpart within the common rule that relies on the definitions in that part. Second, the proposed separate part uses the term “award,” rather than the term “grant,” to include the grants, cooperative agreements, and other assistance instruments covered by the drug-free workplace requirements. The term “grant” then is proposed to be redefined to bring it into conformance with the use of that term established by the Federal Grant and Cooperative Agreement Act (currently at 31 U.S.C. chapter 63). Doing so should help avoid confusion about the applicability of the drug-free workplace requirements to assistance instruments other than grants. To accommodate the change to the term “award,” the proposed separate part includes a definition for the term “cooperative agreement” and uses the term “recipient,” rather than “grantee.”

Impact Analysis—Executive Order 12866

This is not a significant regulatory action under section 3(f)(4) of Executive Order 12866, “Regulatory Planning and Review.”

B. Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 605(b)) requires that, for each rule with a “significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities,” an analysis must be prepared describing the rule's impact on small entities and identifying any significant alternatives to the rule that would minimize the economic impact on small entities.

The participating agencies certify that this proposed rule, if published as a final rule, would not have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. This proposed rule addresses Federal agency procedures for suspension and debarment. It clarifies current requirements under the Nonprocurement Common Rule for Debarment and Suspension by reorganizing information and presenting that information in a plain language, question-and-answer format.

C. Unfunded Mandates Act of 1995

The Unfunded Mandates Act of 1995 (Public Law 104-4) requires agencies to prepare several analytic statements before proposing any rule that may result in an annual expenditures of $100 million by State, local, Indian Tribal governments or the private sector. Since this proposed rule, if published as a final rule, would not result in expenditures of this magnitude, the participating agencies certify that such statements are not necessary.

D. Paperwork Reduction Act

The participating agencies certify that this proposed rule, if published as a final rule, would not impose additional reporting or record-keeping requirements under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

E. Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996

This rule is not a major rule as defined by section 251 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, (5 U.S.C. 804). This proposed rule, if published as a final rule, would not: Result in an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more; result in an increase in cost or prices; or have significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the ability of United States-based companies to compete with foreign-based companies in domestic and export markets.

F. Executive Order 13132: Federalism

This proposed rule, if published as a final rule, would not have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the Start Printed Page 3272distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. Therefore, in accordance with section 6 of Executive Order 13132, the participating agencies have determined that this rule does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a federalism summary impact statement.

Text of the Proposed Common Rules

The text of the proposed common rules appear below:

1. [Part/Subpart] _ is revised to read as follows:

Start Part

[PART/SUBPART] _ GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

_.25
How is this part organized?
_.50
How is this part written?
_.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
_.100
What does this part do?
_.105
Does this part apply to me?
_.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
_.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
_.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
_.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
_.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
_.135
May the [Agency noun] exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
_.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
_.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
_.200
What is a covered transaction?
_.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
_.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
_.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
_.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
_.225
How do I know if a transaction in which I may participate is a covered transaction?
Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
_.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
_.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
_.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
_.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
_.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?
_.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information—Primary Tier Participants
_.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the [Agency noun]?
_.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § _.330 will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
_.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § _.330?
_.345
What must I do if I learn of the information required under § _.330 after entering into a covered transaction with the [Agency noun]?
Disclosing Information—Lower Tier Participants
_.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
_.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § _.350?
_.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § _.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of [Agency adjective] Officials Regarding Transactions
_.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
_.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
_.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
_.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
_.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
_.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
_.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
_.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant?
_.440
[Reserved]
_.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
_.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § _.330?
_.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § _.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
_.500
What is the purpose of the List?
_.505
Who uses the List?
_.510
Who maintains the List?
_.515
What specific information is on the List?
_.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
_.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
_.530
Where can I get the List?
Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
_.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
_.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
_.610
What procedures does the [Agency noun] use in suspension and debarment actions?
_.615
How does the [Agency noun] notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
_.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
_.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
_.630
May the [Agency noun] impute the conduct of one person to another?
_.635
May the [Agency noun] settle a debarment or suspension action?
_.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
—.645
Do other Federal agencies know if the [Agency noun] agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
_.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
_.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
_.710
When does a suspension take effect?
_.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
_.720
How may I contest a suspension?
_.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
_.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
_.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
_.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
_.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
_.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
_.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
_.760
How long may my suspension last?
Start Printed Page 3273 Subpart H—Debarment
_.800
What are the causes for debarment?
_.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
_.810
When does a debarment take effect?
_.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
_.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
_.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
_.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which a proposed debarment is based?
_.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
_.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
_.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
_.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
_.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
_.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
_.865
How long may my debarment last?
_.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
_.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
_.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
_.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
_.900
Adequate evidence.
_.905
Affiliate.
_.910
Agency.
_.915
Agent or representative.
_.920
Civil judgment.
_.925
Conviction.
_.930
Debarment.
_.935
Debarring official.
_.940
Disqualified.
_.945
Excluded or exclusion.
_.950
Indictment.
_.955
Ineligible or ineligibility.
_.960
Legal proceedings.
_.965
List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs.
_.970
Nonprocurement transaction.
_.975
Notice.
_.980
Participant.
_.985
Person.
_.990
Preponderance of the evidence.
_.995
Principal.
_1000
Respondent.
_.1005
State.
_.1010
Suspending official.
_.1015
Suspension.
_.1020
Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded.

Subpart J—[Reserved]

Appendix to Part _Covered Transactions

Start Authority

Authority: Sec. 2455, Pub. L. 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327; E.O. 12549, 3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189; E.O. 12689, 3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p .235.

End Authority
How is this part organized?

(a) This part is subdivided into ten subparts. Each subpart contains information related to a broad topic or specific audience with special responsibilities, as shown in the following table:

In subpart ...You will find provisions related to ...
Ageneral information about this rule.
Bthe types of [Agency adjective] transactions that are covered by the Governmentwide nonprocurement suspension and debarment system.
Cthe responsibilities of persons who participate in covered transactions.
Dthe responsibilities of [Agency adjective] officials who are authorized to enter into covered transactions.
Ethe responsibilities of Federal agencies for the List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs (Published by the General Services Administration).
Fthe general principles governing suspension, debarment, voluntary exclusion and settlement.
Gsuspension actions.
Hdebarment actions.
Idefinitions of terms used in this part.
J[Reserved]

(b) The following table shows which subparts may be of special interest to you, depending on who you are:

If you are ...see subpart(s) ...
(1) a participant or principal in a nonprocurement transactionA, B, C and I.
(2) a respondent in a suspension actionA, B, F, G and I.
(3) a respondent in a debarment actionA, B, F, H and I.
(4) a suspending officialA, B, E, F, G and I.
(5) a debarring officialA, B, D, F, H and I.
(6) a(n) [Agency adjective] official authorized to enter into a covered transactionA, B, D, E and I.
(7) ReservedJ.
How is this part written?

(a) This part uses a “plain language” format to make it easier for the general public and business community to use. The section headings and text, often in the form of questions and answers, must be read together.

(b) Pronouns used within this part, such as “I” and “you,” change from subpart to subpart depending on the audience being addressed. The pronoun “we” always is the [Agency noun].

(c) The “Covered Transactions” chart in the appendix to this part shows the levels or “tiers” at which the [Agency noun] enforces an exclusion under this part.

Do terms in this part have special meanings?

This part uses terms throughout the text that have special meaning. Those terms are defined in Subpart I of this part. For example, three important terms are—

(a) Exclusion or excluded, which refers only to discretionary actions taken by a suspending or debarring official under this part or the Federal Acquisition Regulation (48 CFR part 9, subpart 9.4);

(b) Disqualification or disqualified, which refers to prohibitions under specific statutes, executive orders (other than Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689), or other authorities. Disqualifications frequently are not subject to the discretion of an agency official, may have a different scope than exclusions, or have special conditions that apply to the disqualification; and

(c) Ineligibility or ineligible, which generally refers to a person who is either excluded or disqualified.

Subpart A—General

What does this part do?

This part adopts a governmentwide system of debarment and suspension for [Agency adjective] nonprocurement activities. It also provides for reciprocal exclusion of persons who have been excluded under the Federal Acquisition Regulation, and provides for the consolidated listing of all persons who are excluded, or disqualified by statute, executive order, or other legal authority. Start Printed Page 3274This part satisfies the requirements in section 3 of Executive Order 12549, “Debarment and Suspension” (3 CFR 1986 Comp., p. 189), Executive Order 12689, “Debarment and Suspension” ( 3 CFR 1989 Comp., p. 235) and 31 U.S.C. 6101 note (Section 2455, Public Law 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327).

Does this part apply to me?

Portions of this part (see table at § _.25(b)) apply to you if you are a(n):

(a) Participant or principal in a covered transaction;

(b) Respondent (a person against whom the [Agency noun] has initiated a debarment or suspension action);

(c) [Agency adjective] debarring or suspending official; or

(d) [Agency adjective] official who is authorized to enter into covered transactions with non-Federal parties.

What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?

(a) To protect the public interest, the Federal Government ensures the integrity of Federal programs by conducting business only with responsible persons.

(b) A Federal agency uses the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system to exclude persons from Federal programs persons who are not presently responsible.

(c) An exclusion is a serious action that a Federal agency may take only to protect the public interest. A Federal agency may not exclude a person or commodity for the purposes of punishment.

How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?

With the exceptions stated in §§ _.120, _.315, and _.420, a person who is excluded by the [Agency noun] or any other Federal agency may not:

(a) Be a participant in a(n) [Agency adjective] transaction that is a covered transaction under Subpart B of this part;

(b) Be a participant in a transaction of any other Federal agency that is a covered transaction under that agency's regulation for debarment and suspension; or

(c) Act as a principal of a person participating in one of those covered transactions.

May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?

(a) The [Agency head or designee] may grant an exception permitting an excluded person to participate in a particular covered transaction. If the [Agency head or designee] grants an exception, the exception must be in writing and state the reason(s) for deviating from the governmentwide policy in Executive Order 12549.

(b) An exception granted by one agency for an excluded person does not extend to the covered transactions of another agency.

Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility for Federal procurement contracts?

If any Federal agency excludes a person under its nonprocurement common rule on or after August 25, 1995, the excluded person is also ineligible to participate in Federal procurement transactions under the FAR. Therefore, an exclusion under this part has reciprocal effect in Federal procurement transactions.

Does exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?

If any Federal agency excludes a person under the FAR on or after August 25, 1995, the excluded person is also ineligible to participate in nonprocurement covered transactions under this part. Therefore, an exclusion under the FAR has reciprocal effect in Federal nonprocurement transactions.

[Agency noun] exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?

Given a cause that justifies an exclusion under this part, we may exclude any person who has participated, is currently participating, or may reasonably be expected to participate in a covered transaction.

How do I know if a person is excluded?

Check the Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified from Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs (List) to determine whether a person is excluded. The General Services Administration (GSA) maintains the List and makes it available, as detailed in Subpart E of this part. When a Federal agency takes an action to exclude a person under the nonprocurement or procurement debarment and suspension system, the agency sends information about the excluded person to the GSA for inclusion on the List.

Does this part address persons who are disqualified, as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?

Except if provided for in Subpart J of this part, this part—

(a) Addresses disqualified persons only to—

(1) Provide for their inclusion on the List; and

(2) State responsibilities of Federal agencies and participants to check for disqualified persons before entering into covered transactions.

(b) Does not specify the—

(1) [Agency adjective] transactions for which a disqualified person is ineligible. Those transactions vary on a case-by-case basis, because they depend on the language of the specific statute, Executive order, or regulation that caused the disqualification;

(2) Entities to which the disqualification applies; or

(3) Process that the agency uses to disqualify a person. Unlike exclusion, disqualification is frequently not a discretionary action that a Federal agency takes.

Subpart B—Covered Transactions

What is a covered transaction?

A covered transaction is a nonprocurement or procurement transaction that is subject to the prohibitions of this part. It may be a transaction at—

(a) The primary tier, between a Federal agency and a person (see appendix to this part); or

(b) A lower tier, between a participant in a covered transaction and another person.

Why is it important if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?

The importance of a covered transaction depends upon who you are.

(a) As a participant in the transaction, you have the responsibilities laid out in Subpart C of this part. Those include responsibilities to the person or Federal agency at the next higher tier from whom you received the transaction, if any. They also include responsibilities if you subsequently enter into other covered transactions with persons at the next lower tier.

(b) As a Federal official who enters into a primary tier transaction, you have the responsibilities laid out in subpart D of this part.

(c) As an excluded person, you may not be a participant or principal in the transaction unless—

(1) The person who entered into the transaction with you allows you to continue your involvement in a transaction that predates your exclusion, as permitted under § _.305 or § _.415; or

(2) A(n) [Agency adjective] official obtains an exception from the [Agency head or designee] to allow you to be Start Printed Page 3275involved in the transaction, as permitted under § _.120.

Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?

All nonprocurement transactions, as defined in § _.970, are covered transactions unless listed in § _.215. (See appendix to this part.)

Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?

The following types of nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions:

(a) A direct award to—

(1) A foreign government or foreign governmental entity;

(2) A public international organization;

(3) An entity owned (in whole or in part) or controlled by a foreign government; or

(4) Any other entity consisting wholly or partially of one or more foreign governments or foreign governmental entities.

(b) A benefit to an individual as a personal entitlement without regard to the individual's present responsibility (but benefits received in an individual's business capacity are not excepted). For example, if a person receives social security benefits under the Supplemental Security Income provisions of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. 1301 et seq., those benefits are not covered transactions and, therefore, are not affected if the person is excluded.

(c) Federal employment.

(d) A transaction that the [Agency noun] needs to respond to a national or agency-recognized emergency or disaster.

(e) A permit, license, certificate, or similar instrument issued as a means to regulate public health, safety, or the environment, unless the [Agency noun] specifically designates it to be a covered transaction.

(f) An incidental benefit that results from ordinary governmental operations.

(g) Any other transaction if the application of an exclusion to the transaction is prohibited by law.

Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?

Covered transactions under this part do not include any procurement contracts awarded directly by a Federal agency (those transactions are covered under the Federal Acquisition Regulation), but they do include some procurement contracts awarded by non-Federal participants in nonprocurement covered transactions (see appendix to this part). Specifically, a contract for goods or services is a covered transaction if any of the following applies:

(a) The contract is awarded by a participant in a nonprocurement transaction that is covered under § _.210, and the amount of the contract is expected to equal or exceed $25,000.

(b) The contract requires the consent of a(n) [Agency adjective] official. In that case, the contract, regardless of the amount, always is a covered transaction, and it does not matter who awarded it. For example, it could be a subcontract awarded by a contractor at a tier below a nonprocurement transaction, as shown in the appendix to this part.

(c) The contract is for federally-required audit services.

How do I know if a transaction in which I may participate is a covered transaction?

As a participant in a transaction, you will know that it is a covered transaction because the agency regulations governing the transaction, the appropriate agency official, or participant at the next higher tier who enters into the transaction with you, will tell you that you must comply with applicable portions of this part.

Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions

Doing Business With Other Persons

May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?

(a) You as a participant may not enter into a covered transaction with an excluded person, unless the [Agency noun] grants an exception under § _.120.

(b) You may not enter into any transaction with a person who is disqualified from that transaction, unless you have obtained an exception under the disqualifying statute, Executive order, or regulation.

What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?

(a) You as a participant may continue covered transactions with an excluded person if the transactions were in existence when the agency excluded the person. However, you are not required to continue the transactions, and you may consider termination. You should make a decision about whether to terminate and the type of termination action, if any, only after a thorough review to ensure that the action is proper and appropriate.

(b) You may not renew or extend covered transactions (other than no-cost time extensions) with any excluded person, unless the [Agency noun] grants an exception under § _.120.

May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?

(a) You as a participant may continue to use the services of an excluded person as a principal under a covered transaction if you were using the services of that person in the transaction before the person was excluded. However, you are not required to continue using that person's services as a principal.

(b) You may not begin to use the services of an excluded person as a principal under a covered transaction unless the [Agency noun] grants an exception under § _.120.

Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?

Yes, you as a participant are responsible for determining whether any principal of your covered transactions is excluded or disqualified from participating in the transaction.

You may decide the method and frequency by which you do so. You may, but you are not required to, check the governmentwide List.

What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?

If as a participant you knowingly do business with an excluded person, we may disallow costs, annul or terminate the transaction, issue a stop work order, debar or suspend you, or take other remedies as appropriate.

What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?

Before entering into a covered transaction with a participant at the next lower tier, you must require that participant to:

(a) Comply with this subpart as a condition of participation in the transaction. You may do so using any method(s), unless § _.430 requires you to use specific methods.

(b) Pass the requirement to comply with this subpart to each person with whom the participant enters into a covered transaction at the next lower tier.

Disclosing Information—Primary Tier Participants

What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the [Agency noun]?

Before you enter into a covered transaction at the primary tier, you as the participant must notify the [Agency Start Printed Page 3276adjective] office that is entering into the transaction with you, if you know that you or any of the principals for that covered transaction:

(a) Are presently excluded or disqualified;

(b) Have been convicted within the preceding three years of any of the offenses listed in § _.800(a) or had a civil judgment rendered against you for one of those offenses within that time period;

(c) Are presently indicted for or otherwise criminally or civilly charged by a governmental entity (Federal, state or local) with commission of any of the offenses listed in § _.800(a); or

(d) Have had one or more public transactions (Federal, state, or local) terminated within the preceding three years for cause or default.

If I disclose unfavorable information required under § _.330, will I be prevented from participating in the transaction?

As a primary tier participant, your disclosure of unfavorable information about yourself or a principal under § _.330 will not necessarily cause us to deny your participation in the covered transaction. We will consider the information when we determine whether to enter into the covered transaction. We also will consider any additional information or explanation that you elect to submit with the disclosed information.

What happens if I fail to disclose information required under § _.330?

If we later determine that you failed to disclose information under § _.330 that you knew at the time you entered into the covered transaction, we may

(a) Terminate the transaction for material failure to comply with the terms and conditions of the transaction; or

(b) Pursue any other available remedies, including suspension and debarment.

What must I do if I learn of information required under § _.330 after entering into a covered transaction with the [Agency noun]?

At any time after you enter into a covered transaction, you must give immediate written notice to the [Agency adjective] office with which you entered into the transaction if you learn either that—

(a) You failed to disclose information earlier, as required by § _.330; or

(b) Due to changed circumstances, you or any of the principals for the transaction now meet any of the criteria in § _.330.

Disclosing Information—Lower Tier Participants

What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?

Before you enter into a covered transaction with a person at the next higher tier, you as a lower tier participant must notify that person if you know that you or any of the principals are presently excluded or disqualified.

What happens if I fail to disclose information required under § _.350?

If we later determine that you failed to tell the person at the higher tier that you were excluded or disqualified at the time you entered into the covered transaction with that person, we may pursue any available remedies, including suspension and debarment.

What must I do if I learn of information required under § _.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?

At any time after you enter into a lower tier covered transaction with a person at a higher tier, you must provide immediate written notice to that person if you learn either that—

(a) You failed to disclose information earlier, as required by § _.350; or

(b) Due to changed circumstances, you or any of the principals for the transaction now meet any of the criteria in § _.350.

Subpart D—Responsibilities of [Agency adjective] Officials Regarding Transactions

May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?

(a) You as an agency official may not enter into a covered transaction with an excluded person unless you obtain an exception under § _.120.

(b) You may not enter into any transaction with a person who is disqualified from that transaction, unless you obtain a waiver or exception under the statute, Executive order, or regulation that is the basis for the person's disqualification.

May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?

As an agency official, you may not enter into a covered transaction with a participant if you know that a principal of the transaction is excluded, unless you obtain an exception under § _.120.

May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?

After entering into a covered transaction with a participant, you as an agency official may not approve a participant's use of an excluded person as a principal under that transaction, unless you obtain an exception under § _.120.

What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?

(a) You as an agency official may continue covered transactions with an excluded person, or under which an excluded person is a principal, if the transactions were in existence when the person was excluded. You are not required to continue the transactions, however, and you may consider termination. You should make a decision about whether to terminate and the type of termination action, if any, only after a thorough review to ensure that the action is proper.

(b) You may not renew or extend covered transactions (other than no-cost time extensions) with any excluded person, or under which an excluded person is a principal, unless you obtain an exception under § _.120.

May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?

If a transaction at a lower tier is subject to your approval, you as an agency official may not approve—

(a) A covered transaction with a person who is currently excluded, unless you obtain an exception under § _.120; or

(b) A transaction with a person who is disqualified from that transaction, unless you obtain a waiver or exception under the statute, Executive order, or regulation that is the basis for the person's disqualification.

When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?

As an agency official, you must check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified before you—

(a) Enter into a primary tier covered transaction;

(b) Approve a principal in a primary tier covered transaction;

(c) Approve a lower tier participant if agency approval of the lower tier participant is required; or

(d) Approve a principal in connection with a lower tier transaction if agency approval of the principal is required.

How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?

You check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified in two ways:

(a) You as an agency official must check the governmentwide List when you take any action listed in § _.425. Start Printed Page 3277

(b) You must review information that a participant gives you, as required by § _.330, about its status or the status of the principals of a transaction.

What must I require of a primary tier participant?

You as an agency official must require each participant in a primary tier covered transaction to—

(a) Comply with subpart C of this part as a condition of participation in the transaction; and

(b) Communicate the requirement to comply with Subpart C of this part to persons at the next lower tier with whom the primary tier participant enters into covered transactions.

[Reserved]
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?

If a participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person, you as an agency official may refer the matter for suspension and debarment consideration.

You may also disallow costs, annul or terminate the transaction, issue a stop work order, or take any other appropriate remedy.

What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § _.330?

If you as an agency official determine that a participant failed to disclose information, as required by § _.330, at the time it entered into a covered transaction with you, you may—

(a) Terminate the transaction for material failure to comply with the terms and conditions of the transaction; or

(b) Pursue any other available remedies, including suspension and debarment.

What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § _.350 to the next higher tier?

If you as an agency official determine that a lower tier participant failed to disclose information, as required by § _.350, at the time it entered into a covered transaction with a participant at the next higher tier, you may pursue any remedies available to you, including the initiation of a suspension or debarment action.

Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs

What is the purpose of the List?

The List is a widely available source of the most current information about persons who are excluded or disqualified from covered transactions.

Who uses the List?

(a) Federal agency officials use the List to determine whether to enter into a transaction with a person, as required under § _.410.

(b) Participants also may, but are not required to, use the List to determine if—

(1) Principals of their transactions are excluded or disqualified, as required under § _.315; or

(2) Persons with whom they are entering into covered transactions at the next lower tier are excluded or disqualified.

(c) The List is available to the general public.

Who maintains the List?

In accordance with the OMB guidelines, the General Services Administration (GSA) compiles, maintains and distributes the List.

What specific information is on the List?

(a) At a minimum, the List indicates—

(1) The full name (where available) and address of each excluded and disqualified person, in alphabetical order, with cross references if more than one name is involved in a single action;

(2) The type of action;

(3) The cause for the action;

(4) The scope of the action;

(5) Any termination date for the action;

(6) The agency and name and telephone number of the agency point of contact for the action; and

(7) The Contractor and Government Establishment (CAGE) code or other similar code approved by the GSA, of the excluded or disqualified person, if available.

(b)(1) The database for the electronic version of the List includes a field for the Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) (the social security number (SSN) for an individual) of an excluded or disqualified person.

(2) GSA discloses the SSN of an individual to verify the identity of an individual, only if permitted under the Privacy Act of 1974 and, if appropriate, the Computer Matching and Privacy Protection Act of 1988, as codified in 5 U.S.C. 552a.

Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?

Federal officials who take actions to exclude persons under this part or officials who are responsible for identifying disqualified persons must provide current information about those persons to the GSA. They must give the GSA—

(a) Information required by § _.515(a);

(b) The Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) of the excluded or disqualified person, including the social security number (SSN) for an individual, if the number is available and may be disclosed under law;

(c) Information about an excluded or disqualified person within five working days, unless the GSA agrees to an alternative schedule, after—

(1) Taking an exclusion action;

(2) Modifying or rescinding an exclusion action;

(3) Finding that a person is disqualified; or

(4) Finding that there has been a change in the status of a person who is listed as disqualified.

Whom do I ask if I have questions about a specific person on the List?

If you have questions about a listed person, ask the Federal agency that took the action placing the person's name on the List.

Where can I get the List?

You can get the information contained on the List in two ways.

(a) You may subscribe to a printed version which you may obtain by purchasing a yearly subscription. A Federal agency may subscribe through its printing and distribution office. The public may obtain a subscription from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402, or by calling the Government Printing Office Inquiry and Order Desk at (202) 783-3238.

(b) You may access the List through the Internet, currently at http://epls.arnet.gov.

Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions

How do suspension and debarment actions start?

When we receive information from any source concerning a cause for suspension or debarment, we will promptly report and investigate it. We refer the question of whether to suspend or debar you to our suspending or debarring official for consideration, if appropriate.

Start Printed Page 3278
How does suspension differ from debarment?

Suspension differs from debarment in that:

A suspending official . . .A debarring official . . .
(a) Imposes suspension as a temporary status of ineligibility for procurement and nonprocurement transactions, pending completion of an investigation or legal proceedingsImposes debarment for a specified period as a final determination that a person is not presently responsible.
(b) Must— (1) Have adequate evidence that there may be a cause for debarment of an individual or business; and (2) Conclude that there is an immediate need to take action to protect the Federal interestMust conclude, based on a preponderance of the evidence, that the individual or business has engaged in conduct that warrants debarment.
(c) Usually imposes the suspension first, and promptly notifies the suspended person, giving the person an opportunity to contest the suspension and have it liftedImposes debarment after giving the respondent notice of the action and an opportunity to contest the proposed debarment.
[Agency noun] use in suspension and debarment actions?

In deciding whether to suspend or debar you, we handle the actions as informally as practicable, consistent with principles of fundamental fairness.

(a) For suspension actions, we use the procedures in this subpart and Subpart G of this part.

(b) For debarment actions, we use the procedures in this subpart and Subpart H of this part.

How does the [Agency noun] notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?

The suspending or debarring official sends a written notice to you, your identified counsel, your agent for service of process, or any of your partners, officers, directors, owners, or joint venturers to the last known street address, facsimile number, or e-mail address. The notice is effective if sent to any of these persons.

Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?

Yes, when more than one Federal agency has an interest in a suspension or debarment, the agencies may consider designating one agency as the lead agency for making the decision. Agencies are encouraged to establish methods and procedures for coordinating their suspension and debarment actions.

What is the scope of a suspension or debarment?

If you are suspended or debarred, the suspension or debarment is effective as follows:

(a) Your suspension or debarment constitutes suspension or debarment of all of your divisions and other organizational elements from all covered transactions, unless the suspension or debarment decision is limited—

(1) By its terms to one or more specifically identified individuals, divisions, or other organizational elements; or

(2) To specific types of transactions.

(b) Any affiliate of a participant may be included in a suspension or debarment action if the suspending or debarring official—

(1) Officially names the affiliate in the notice; and

(2) Gives the affiliate an opportunity to contest the action.

May the [Agency noun] impute conduct of one person to another?

For purposes of determining the scope of your suspension or debarment, we may impute conduct as follows:

(a) Conduct imputed to participant. We may impute the fraudulent, criminal, or other seriously improper conduct of any officer, director, shareholder, partner, employee, or other individual associated with a participant to the participant when the conduct occurred in connection with the individual's performance of duties for or on behalf of the participant, or with the participant's knowledge, approval or acquiescence. The participant's acceptance of the benefits derived from the conduct is evidence of knowledge, approval or acquiescence.

(b) Conduct imputed to individuals associated with participant. We may impute the fraudulent, criminal, or other seriously improper conduct of a participant to any officer, director, shareholder, partner, employee, or other individual associated with the participant who participated in, knew of or had reason to know of the participant's conduct.

(c) Conduct of one participant imputed to other participants in a joint venture. We may impute the fraudulent, criminal, or other seriously improper conduct of one participant in a joint venture, grant pursuant to a joint application, or similar arrangement to other participants if the conduct occurred for or on behalf of the joint venture, grant pursuant to a joint application or similar arrangement, or with the knowledge, approval, or acquiescence of those participants. Acceptance of the benefits derived from the conduct is evidence of knowledge, approval, or acquiescence.

Settlement and Voluntary Exclusion

May the [Agency noun] settle a debarment or suspension action?

Yes, we may settle a debarment or suspension action at any time if it is in the best interests of the Federal Government.

May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?

Yes, if we enter into a settlement with you in which you agree to be excluded, it is called a voluntary exclusion and has governmentwide effect.

Do other Federal agencies know if the [Agency noun] agrees to a voluntary exclusion?

(a) Yes, we send information regarding a voluntary exclusion to the General

Services Administration for entry into the List.

(b) Also, any agency or person may contact us to find out the details of a voluntary exclusion.

Subpart G—Suspension

When may the suspending official issue a suspension?

Suspension is a serious action. Using the procedures of this subpart and Subpart F of this part, the suspending official may impose suspension only when that official determines that—

(a) There exists adequate evidence to suspect that a cause for debarment under § _.800 may exist; and Start Printed Page 3279

(b) Immediate action is necessary to protect the public interest.

What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?

(a) In determining the adequacy of the evidence to support the suspension, the suspending official considers how much information is available, how credible it is given the circumstances, whether or not important allegations are corroborated, and what inferences can reasonably be drawn as a result. During this assessment, the suspending official may examine the basic documents, including grants, cooperative agreements, loan authorizations, contracts, and other relevant documents.

(b) An indictment, conviction, civil judgment, or other official findings by Federal, State, or local bodies that determine factual and/or legal matters, constitutes adequate evidence for purposes of suspension actions.

(c) In deciding whether immediate action is needed to protect the public interest, the suspending official has wide discretion. For example, the suspending official may infer the necessity for immediate action to protect the public interest either from the nature of the circumstances giving rise to a cause for suspension or from potential business relationships or involvement with a program of the Federal Government.

When does a suspension take effect?

A suspension is effective when the suspending official signs the decision to suspend.

What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?

After deciding to suspend you, the suspending official promptly sends you a Notice of Suspension advising you—

(a) That you have been suspended;

(b) That your suspension is based on—

(1) An indictment;

(2) A conviction;

(3) Other adequate evidence that you have committed irregularities which seriously reflect on the propriety of further Federal Government dealings with you; or

(4) Conduct of another person that has been imputed to you, or your affiliation with a suspended or debarred person;

(c) Of any other irregularities in terms sufficient to put you on notice without disclosing the Federal Government's evidence;

(d) Of the cause(s) upon which we relied under § _.700 for imposing suspension;

(e) That your suspension is for a temporary period pending the completion of an investigation or resulting legal or debarment proceedings;

(f) Of the applicable provisions of this subpart, Subpart F of this part, and any other [Agency adjective] procedures governing suspension decision making; and

(g) Of the governmentwide effect of your suspension from procurement and nonprocurement programs and activities.

How may I contest a suspension?

If you as a respondent wish to contest a suspension, you or your representative must provide the suspending official with information in opposition to the suspension.

You may do this orally or in writing, but any information provided orally that you consider important must also be submitted in writing for the official record.

How much time do I have to contest a suspension?

(a) As a respondent you or your representative must either send, or make arrangements to appear and present, the information and argument to the suspending official within 30 days after you receive the Notice of Suspension.

(b) We consider the notice to be received by you—

(1) When delivered, if we mail the notice to the last known street address, or five days after we send it if the letter is undeliverable;

(2) When sent, if we send the notice by facsimile or five days after we send it if the facsimile is undeliverable; or

(3) When delivered, if we send the notice by e-mail or five days after we send it if the e-mail is undeliverable.

What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest the suspension?

(a) In addition to any information and argument in opposition, as a respondent your submission to the suspending official must identify—

(1) Specific facts that contradict the statements contained in the Notice of Suspension. A general denial is insufficient to raise a genuine dispute over facts material to the suspension;

(2) All existing, proposed, or prior exclusions under regulations implementing Executive Order 12549 and all similar actions taken by Federal, state, or local agencies, including administrative agreements that affect only those agencies;

(3) All criminal and civil proceedings not included in the Notice of Suspension that grew out of facts relevant to the cause(s) stated in the notice; and

(4) All of your affiliates.

(b) If you fail to disclose this information, or provide false information, the [Agency noun] may seek further criminal, civil or administrative action against you, as appropriate.

Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?

(a) You as a respondent will not have an additional opportunity to challenge the facts if the suspending official determines that—

(1) Your suspension is based upon an indictment, conviction, civil judgment, or other finding by a Federal, State, or local body for which an opportunity to contest the facts was provided;

(2) Your presentation in opposition contains only general denials to information contained in the Notice of Suspension;

(3) The issues raised in your presentation in opposition to the suspension are not factual in nature, or are not material to the suspending official's initial decision to suspend, or the official's decision whether to continue the suspension; or

(4) On the basis of advice from the Department of Justice, an office of the United States Attorney, a State attorney general's office, or a State or local prosecutor's office, that substantial interests of the government in pending or contemplated legal proceedings based on the same facts as the suspension would be prejudiced by conducting fact-finding.

(b) You will have an opportunity to challenge the facts if the suspending official determines that—

(1) The conditions in paragraph (a) of this section do not exist; and

(2) Your presentation in opposition raises a genuine dispute over facts material to the suspension.

(c) If you have an opportunity to challenge disputed material facts under this section, the suspending official or designee must conduct additional proceedings to resolve those facts.

Are suspension proceedings formal?

(a) Suspension proceedings are conducted in a fair and informal manner. The suspending official may use flexible procedures to allow you to present matters in opposition. In so doing, the suspending official is not required to follow formal rules of evidence or procedure in creating an official record upon which the official will base a final suspension decision. Start Printed Page 3280

(b) You as a respondent or your representative must submit any documentary evidence you want the suspending official to consider. In addition, you may present witnesses and confront any person the agency presents as a witness against you.

Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?

(a) Where fact-finding is conducted, the fact-finder must prepare written findings of fact for the record.

(b) A transcribed record of fact-finding proceedings must be made, unless you as a respondent and the [Agency noun] agree to waive it in advance. If you want a copy of the transcribed record, you may purchase it.

What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?

(a) The suspending official bases the decision on all information contained in the official record. The record includes—

(1) All information in support of the suspending official's initial decision to suspend you;

(2) Any further information and argument presented in support of, or opposition to, the suspension; and

(3) Any transcribed record of fact-finding proceedings.

(b) The suspending official may refer disputed material facts to another official for findings of fact. The suspending official may reject any resulting findings, in whole or in part, only after specifically determining them to be arbitrary, capricious, or clearly erroneous.

When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?

(a) Where no additional fact-finding is conducted, the suspending official must make the decision whether to continue, modify, or terminate your suspension within 45 days of closing the official record. The official may extend that period for good cause. If fact-finding is conducted, the suspending official must make the final decision as promptly as possible after the record is closed.

(b) In any event, the suspending official must prepare a written final decision and notify you of the decision and the reasons for it. (See § _.615.)

How long may my suspension last?

(a) If legal or debarment proceedings are initiated at the time of, or during your suspension, the suspension may continue until the conclusion of those proceedings. However, if proceedings are not initiated, a suspension may not exceed 12 months.

(b) The suspending official may extend the 12 month limit under paragraph (a) of this section for an additional 6 months if an office of a U.S. Assistant Attorney General, U.S. Attorney, or other responsible prosecuting official requests an extension in writing. In no event may a suspension exceed 18 months without initiating proceedings under paragraph (a) of this section.

(c) The suspending official must notify the appropriate officials under paragraph

(b) of this section of an impending termination of a suspension at least 30 days before the 12 month period expires to allow the officials an opportunity to request an extension.

Subpart H—Debarment

What are the causes for debarment?

We may debar a person for—

(a) Conviction of or civil judgment for—

(1) Commission of fraud or a criminal offense in connection with obtaining, attempting to obtain, or performing a public or private agreement or transaction;

(2) Violation of Federal or State antitrust statutes, including those proscribing price fixing between competitors, allocation of customers between competitors, and bid rigging;

(3) Commission of embezzlement, theft, forgery, bribery, falsification, or destruction of records, making false statements, tax evasion, receiving stolen property, making false claims, or obstruction of justice; or

(4) Commission of any other offense indicating a lack of business integrity or business honesty that seriously and directly affects your present responsibility;

(b) Violation of the terms of a public agreement or transaction so serious as to affect the integrity of an agency program, such as—

(1) A willful failure to perform in accordance with the terms of one or more public agreements or transactions;

(2) A history of failure to perform or of unsatisfactory performance of one or more public agreements or transactions; or

(3) A willful violation of a statutory or regulatory provision or requirement applicable to a public agreement or transaction;

(c) Any of the following causes:

(1) A nonprocurement debarment by any Federal agency taken before October 1, 1988, or a procurement debarment by any Federal agency taken pursuant to 48 CFR part 9, subpart 9.4, before August 25, 1995;

(2) Knowingly doing business with an ineligible person, except as permitted under § _.120 or § _.305;

(3) Failure to pay a single substantial debt, or a number of outstanding debts (including disallowed costs and overpayments, but not including sums owed the Federal Government under the Internal Revenue Code) owed to any Federal agency or instrumentality, provided the debt is uncontested by the debtor or, if contested, provided that the debtor's legal and administrative remedies have been exhausted;

(4) Violation of a material provision of a voluntary exclusion agreement entered into under § _.640 or of any settlement of a debarment or suspension action; or

(5) Violation of the provisions of the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 (41 U.S.C. 701); or

(d) Any other cause of so serious or compelling a nature that it affects your present responsibility.

What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?

After consideration of the causes in § _.800 of this subpart, if the debarring official proposes to debar you, the official sends you a Notice of Proposed Debarment, pursuant to § _.615, advising you—

(a) That the debarring official is considering debarring you;

(b) Of the reasons for proposing to debar you in terms sufficient to put you on notice of the conduct or transactions upon which the proposed debarment is based;

(c) Of the cause(s) under § _.800 upon which the debarring official relied for proposing your debarment;

(d) Of the applicable provisions of this subpart, Subpart F of this part, and any other [Agency adjective] procedures governing debarment; and

(e) Of the governmentwide effect of a debarment from procurement and nonprocurement programs and activities.

When does a debarment take effect?

Unlike suspension, a debarment is not effective until the debarring official issues a decision. The debarring official does not issue a decision until the respondent has had an opportunity to contest the proposed debarment.

How may I contest a proposed debarment?

If you as a respondent wish to contest a proposed debarment, you or your representative must provide the debarring official with information in opposition to the proposed debarment. You may do this orally or in writing, but Start Printed Page 3281any information provided orally that you consider important must also be submitted in writing for the official record.

How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?

(a) As a respondent you or your representative must either send, or make arrangements to appear and present, the information and argument to the debarring official within 30 days after you receive the Notice of Proposed Debarment.

(b) We consider the Notice of Proposed Debarment to be received by you—

(1) When delivered, if we mail the notice to the last known street address, or five days after we send it if the letter is undeliverable;

(2) When sent, if we send the notice by facsimile or five days after we send it if the facsimile is undeliverable; or

(3) When delivered, if we send the notice by e-mail or five days after we send it if the e-mail is undeliverable.

What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?

(a) In addition to any information and argument in opposition, as a respondent your submission to the debarring official must identify—

(1) Specific facts that contradict the statements contained in the Notice of Proposed Debarment. Include any information about any of the factors listed in § _.860. A general denial is insufficient to raise a genuine dispute over facts material to the debarment;

(2) All existing, proposed, or prior exclusions under regulations implementing Executive Order 12549 and all similar actions taken by Federal, State, or local agencies, including administrative agreements that affect only those agencies;

(3) All criminal and civil proceedings not included in the Notice of Proposed Debarment that grew out of facts relevant to the cause(s) stated in the notice; and

(4) All of your affiliates.

(b) If you fail to disclose this information, or provide false information, the [Agency noun] may seek further criminal, civil or administrative action against you, as appropriate.

Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which a proposed debarment is based?

(a) You as a respondent will not have an additional opportunity to challenge the facts if the debarring official determines that—

(1) Your debarment is based upon a conviction or civil judgment;

(2) Your presentation in opposition contains only general denials to information contained in the Notice of Proposed Debarment; or

(3) The issues raised in your presentation in opposition to the proposed debarment are not factual in nature, or are not material to the debarring official's decision whether to debar.

(b) You will have an additional opportunity to challenge the facts if the debarring official determines that—

(1) The conditions in paragraph (a) of this section do not exist; and

(2) Your presentation in opposition raises a genuine dispute over facts material to the proposed debarment.

(c) If you have an opportunity to challenge disputed material facts under this section, the debarring official or designee must conduct additional proceedings to resolve those facts.

Are debarment proceedings formal?

(a) Debarment proceedings are conducted in a fair and informal manner. The debarring official may use flexible procedures to allow you as a respondent to present matters in opposition. In so doing, the debarring official is not required to follow formal rules of evidence or procedure in creating an official record upon which the official will base the decision whether to debar.

(b) You or your representative must submit any documentary evidence you want the debarring official to consider. In addition, you may present witnesses and confront any person the agency presents as a witness against you.

Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?

(a) Where fact-finding is conducted, the fact-finder must prepare written findings of fact for the record.

(b) A transcribed record of fact-finding proceedings must be made, unless you as a respondent and the [Agency noun] agree to waive it in advance. If you want a copy of the transcribed record, you may purchase it.

What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?

(a) The debarring official may debar you for any of the causes in § _.800. However, the official need not debar you even if a cause for debarment exists. The official may consider the seriousness of your acts or omissions and the mitigating or aggravating factors set forth at § _.860.

(b) The debarring official bases the decision on all information contained in the official record. The record includes—

(1) All information in support of the debarring official's proposed debarment;

(2) Any further information and argument presented in support of, or in opposition to, the proposed debarment; and

(3) Any transcribed record of fact-finding proceedings.

(c) The debarring official may refer disputed material facts to another official for findings of fact. The debarring official may reject any resultant findings, in whole or in part, only after specifically determining them to be arbitrary, capricious, or clearly erroneous.

What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?

(a) In any debarment action, we must establish the cause for debarment by a preponderance of the evidence.

(b) If the proposed debarment is based upon a conviction or civil judgment, the standard of proof is met.

Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?

(a) We have the burden to prove that a cause for debarment exists.

(b) Once a cause for debarment is established, you as a respondent have the burden of demonstrating to the satisfaction of the debarring official that you are presently responsible and that debarment is not necessary.

What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?

This section lists the mitigating and aggravating factors that the debarring official may consider in determining whether to debar you and the length of your debarment period. The debarring official may consider other factors if appropriate in light of the circumstances of a particular case. The existence or nonexistence of any factor, such as one of those set forth in this section, is not necessarily determinative of your present responsibility. In making a debarment decision, the debarring official may consider the following factors:

(a) The actual or potential harm or impact that results or may result from the wrongdoing.

(b) The frequency of incidents and/or duration of the wrongdoing.

(c) Whether there is a pattern or prior history of wrongdoing. For example, if you have been found by another Federal agency or a State agency to have engaged in wrongdoing similar to that found in the debarment action, the existence of this fact may be used by the debarring official in determining that Start Printed Page 3282you have a pattern or prior history of wrongdoing.

(d) Whether you are or have been excluded or disqualified by an agency of the Federal Government or have not been allowed to participate in State or local contracts or assistance agreements on a basis of conduct similar to one or more of the causes for debarment specified in this part.

(e) Whether you have entered into an administrative agreement with a Federal agency or a State or local government that is not governmentwide but is based on conduct similar to one or more of the causes for debarment specified in this part.

(f) Whether and to what extent you planned, initiated, or carried out the wrongdoing.

(g) Whether you have accepted responsibility for the wrongdoing and recognize the seriousness of the misconduct that led to the cause for debarment.

(h) Whether you have paid or agreed to pay all criminal, civil and administrative liabilities for the improper activity, including any investigative or administrative costs incurred by the government, and have made or agreed to make full restitution.

(i) Whether you have cooperated fully with the government agencies during the investigation and any court or administrative action. In determining the extent of cooperation, the debarring official may consider when the cooperation began and whether you disclosed all pertinent information known to you.

(j) Whether the wrongdoing was pervasive within your organization.

(k) The kind of positions held by the individuals involved in the wrongdoing.

(l) Whether your organization took appropriate corrective action or remedial measures, such as establishing ethics training and implementing programs to prevent recurrence.

(m) Whether your principals tolerated the offense.

(n) Whether you brought the activity cited as a basis for the debarment to the attention of the appropriate government agency in a timely manner.

(o) Whether you have fully investigated the circumstances surrounding the cause for debarment and, if so, made the result of the investigation available to the debarring official.

(p) Whether you had effective standards of conduct and internal control systems in place at the time the questioned conduct occurred.

(q) Whether you have taken appropriate disciplinary action against the individuals responsible for the activity which constitutes the cause for debarment.

(r) Whether you have had adequate time to eliminate the circumstances within your organization that led to the cause for the debarment.

(s) Other factors that are appropriate to the circumstances of a particular case.

How long may my debarment last?

(a) If the debarring official decides to debar you, your period of debarment will be based on the seriousness of the cause(s) upon which your debarment is based. Generally, debarment should not exceed three years. However, if circumstances warrant, the debarring official may impose a longer period of debarment.

(b) In determining the period of debarment, the debarring official may consider the factors in § _.860. If a suspension has preceded your debarment, the debarring official must consider the time you were suspended.

(c) If the debarment is for a violation of the provisions of the Drug-Free

Workplace Act of 1988, your period of debarment may not exceed five years.

When do I know if the debarring official debars me?

(a) Where no additional fact-finding is conducted, the debarring official must make the decision whether to debar you within 45 days of closing the official record. The debarring official may extend that period for good cause. If fact-finding is conducted, the debarring official must make the final decision as promptly as possible after the record is closed.

(b) The debarring official sends you written notice, pursuant to § _.615 that the official decided, either—

(1) Not to debar you; or

(2) To debar you. In this event, the notice:

(i) Refers to the Notice of Proposed Debarment;

(ii) Specifies the reasons for your debarment;

(iii) States the period of your debarment, including the effective dates; and

(iv) Advises you that your debarment is effective for covered transactions and contracts that are subject to the Federal Acquisition Regulation (48 CFR chapter 1), throughout the executive branch of the Federal Government unless an agency head or an authorized designee grants an exception.

May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?

Yes, as a debarred person you may ask the debarring official to reconsider the debarment decision or to reduce the time period or scope of the debarment. However, you must put your request in writing and support it with documentation.

What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?

The debarring official may reduce or terminate your debarment based on—

(a) Newly discovered material evidence;

(b) A reversal of the conviction or civil judgment upon which your debarment was based;

(c) A bona fide change in ownership or management;

(d) Elimination of other causes for which the debarment was imposed; or

(e) Other reasons the debarring official finds appropriate.

May the debarring official extend a debarment period?

(a) Yes, the debarring official may extend a debarment for an additional period, if that official determines that an extension is necessary to protect the public interest.

(b) However, the debarring official may not extend a debarment solely on the basis of the facts and circumstances upon which the initial debarment action was based.

(c) If the debarring official decides that a debarment for an additional period is necessary, the debarring official must follow the applicable procedures in this subpart, and Subpart F of this part, to extend the debarment.

Subpart I—Definitions

Adequate evidence.

Adequate evidence means information sufficient to support the reasonable belief that a particular act or omission has occurred.

Affiliate.

Persons are affiliates of each other if, directly or indirectly, either one controls or has the power to control the other or a third person controls or has the power to control both. The ways we use to determine control include, but are not limited to—

(a) Interlocking management or ownership;

(b) Identity of interests among family members;

(c) Shared facilities and equipment;

(d) Common use of employees; or

(e) A business entity which has been organized following the exclusion of a person which has the same or similar management, ownership, or principal employees as the excluded person.

Agency.

Agency means any United States executive department, military Start Printed Page 3283department, defense agency, or any other agency of the executive branch. The independent regulatory agencies are not considered “agencies” for purposes of this part.

Agent or representative.

Agent or representative means any person who acts on behalf of, or who is authorized to commit a participant in a covered transaction.

Civil judgment.

Civil judgment means the disposition of a civil action by any court of competent jurisdiction, whether by verdict, decision, settlement, stipulation, other disposition which creates a civil liability for the complained of wrongful acts, or a final determination of liability under the Program Fraud Civil Remedies Act of 1988 (31 U.S.C. 3801-3812).

Conviction.

Conviction means a judgment or any other determination of guilt of a criminal offense by any court of competent jurisdiction, whether entered upon a verdict or plea, including a plea of nolo contendere, or any other resolution, including probation before judgment and deferred prosecution.

Debarment.

Debarment means an action taken by a debarring official under Subpart H of this part to exclude a person from participating in covered transactions and transactions covered under the Federal Acquisition Regulation (48 CFR chapter 1). A person so excluded is debarred.

Debarring official.

(a) Debarring official means an agency official who is authorized to impose debarment. A debarring official is either—

(1) The agency head; or

(2) An official designated by the agency head.

(b) [Reserved]

Disqualified.

Disqualified means that a person is prohibited from participating in specified Federal procurement or nonprocurement transactions as required under a statute, Executive order (other than Executive Orders 12549 and 12689) or other authority. Examples of disqualifications include persons prohibited under—

(a) The Davis-Bacon Act (40 U.S.C. 276(a));

(b) The equal employment opportunity acts and Executive orders; or

(c) The Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7606), Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1368) and Executive Order 11738 (3 CFR, 1973 Comp., p. 799).

Excluded or exclusion.

Excluded or exclusion means—

(a) That a person or commodity is prohibited from being a participant in covered transactions, whether the person has been suspended; debarred; proposed for debarment under 48 CFR part 9, subpart 9.4; voluntarily excluded; or

(b) The act of excluding a person.

Indictment.

Indictment means an indictment for a criminal offense. A presentment, information, or other filing by a competent authority charging a criminal offense shall be given the same effect as an indictment.

Ineligible or ineligibility.

Ineligible or ineligibility means that a person or commodity is prohibited from covered transactions because of an exclusion or disqualification.

Legal proceedings.

Legal proceedings means any criminal proceeding or any civil judicial proceeding, including a proceeding under the Program Fraud Civil Remedies Act (31 U.S.C. 3801-3812), to which the Federal Government or a State or local government or quasi-governmental authority is a party. The term also includes appeals from those proceedings.

List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified from Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs.

List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified from Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs (List) means the list compiled, maintained, and distributed by the General Services Administration (GSA) containing the names and other information about persons who are ineligible.

Nonprocurement transaction.

(a) Nonprocurement transaction means any transaction, regardless of type (except procurement contracts), including, but not limited to the following:

(1) Grants.

(2) Cooperative agreements.

(3) Scholarships.

(4) Fellowships.

(5) Contracts of assistance.

(6) Loans.

(7) Loan guarantees.

(8) Subsidies.

(9) Insurances.

(10) Payments for specified uses.

(11) Donation agreements.

(b) A nonprocurement transaction at any tier does not require the transfer of Federal funds.

Notice.

Notice means a written communication served in person, sent by certified mail or its equivalent, or sent electronically by e-mail or facsimile. (See § _.615.)

Participant.

Participant means any person who submits a proposal for or who enters into a covered transaction, including an agent or representative of a participant.

Person.

Person means any individual, corporation, partnership, association, unit of government, or legal entity, however organized.

Preponderance of the evidence.

Preponderance of the evidence means proof by information that, compared with information opposing it, leads to the conclusion that the fact at issue is more probably true than not.

Principal.

Principal means—

(a) An officer, director, owner, partner, principal investigator, or other person within a participant with management or supervisory responsibilities related to a covered transaction; or

(b) A consultant or other person, whether or not employed by the participant or paid with Federal funds, who—

(1) Is in a position to handle Federal funds;

(2) Is in a position to influence or control the use of those funds; or,

(3) Occupies a technical or professional position capable of influencing the development or outcome of an activity that affects a covered transaction.

Respondent.

Respondent means a person against whom an agency has initiated a debarment or suspension action.

State.

(a) State means—

(1) Any of the States of the United States;

(2) The District of Columbia;

(3) The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico;

(4) Any territory or possession of the United States; or

(5) Any agency or instrumentality of a State.

(b) For purposes of this part, State does not include institutions of higher Start Printed Page 3284education, hospitals, or units of local government.

Suspending official.

(a) Suspending official means an agency official who is authorized to impose suspension. The suspending official is either:

(1) The agency head; or

(2) An official designated by the agency head.

(b) [Reserved]

Suspension.

Suspension is an action taken by a suspending official under subpart G of this part that immediately prohibits a person from participating in covered transactions and transactions covered under the Federal Acquisition Regulation (48 CFR chapter 1) for a temporary period, pending completion of an agency investigation and any judicial or administrative proceedings that may ensue. A person so excluded is suspended.

Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded.

(a) Voluntary exclusion means a person's agreement to be excluded under the terms of a settlement between the person and one or more agencies. Voluntary exclusion must have governmentwide effect.

(b) Voluntarily excluded means the status of a person who has agreed to a voluntary exclusion.

Start Printed Page 3285

2. [Part/Subpart] _ is added to read as follows:

End Part Start Part

[Part/Subpart] _—Governmentwide Requirements for Drug-Free Workplace (Financial Assistance)

Subpart A—Purpose and Coverage
_.100
What does this part do?
_.105
Does this part apply to me?
_.110
Are any of my Federal assistance awards exempt from this part?
_.115
Does this part affect the Federal contracts that I receive?
Subpart B—Requirements for Recipients Other Than Individuals
_.200
What must I do to comply with this part?
_.205
What must I include in my drug-free workplace statement?
_.210
To whom must I distribute my drug-free workplace statement?
_.215
What must I include in my drug-free awareness program?
_.220
By when must I publish my drug-free workplace statement and establish my drug-free awareness program?
_.225
What actions must I take concerning employees who are convicted of drug violations in the workplace?
_.230
How and when must I identify workplaces?
Subpart C—Requirements for Recipients Who Are Individuals
_.300
What must I do to comply with this part if I am an individual recipient?
_.301
[Reserved]
Subpart D—Responsibilities of [Agency adjective] Awarding Officials
_.400
What are my responsibilities as a(n) [Agency adjective] awarding official?
Subpart E—Violations of this Part and Consequences
_.500
How are violations of this part determined for recipients other than individuals?
_.505
How are violations of this part determined for recipients who are individuals?
_.510
What actions will the Federal Government take against a recipient determined to have violated this part?
_.515
Are there any exceptions to those actions?
Subpart F—Definitions
_.605
Award.
_.610
Controlled substance.
_.615
Conviction.
_.620
Cooperative agreement.
_.625
Criminal drug statute.
_.630
Debarment.
_.635
Drug-free workplace.
_.640
Employee.
_.645
Federal agency or agency.
_.650
Grant.
_.655
Individual.
_.660
Recipient.
_.665
State.
_.670
Suspension

Subpart A—Purpose and Coverage

What does this part do?

This part carries out the portion of the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 (41 U.S.C. 701 et seq., as amended) that applies to grants. It also applies the provisions of the Act to cooperative agreements and other financial assistance awards, as a matter of Federal Government policy.

Does this part apply to me?

(a) Portions of this part apply to you if you are either

(1) A recipient of an assistance award from the [Agency noun]; or

(2) A(n) [Agency adjective] awarding official. (See definitions of award and recipient in §§ _.605 and _.660, respectively.)

(b) The following table shows the subparts that apply to you:

If you are ...see subparts ...
(1) a recipient who is not an individualA, B and E.
(2) a recipient who is an individualA, C and E.
(3) a(n) [Agency adjective] awarding officialA, D and E.
Are any of my Federal assistance awards exempt from this part?

This part does not apply to any award that the [Agency head or designee] determines that the application of this part would be inconsistent with the international obligations of the United States or the laws or regulations of a foreign government.

Does this part affect the Federal contracts that I receive?

It will affect future contract awards indirectly if you are debarred or suspended for a violation of the requirements of this part, as described in § _.510(c). However, this part does not apply directly to procurement contracts. The portion of the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 that applies to Federal procurement contracts is carried out through the Federal Acquisition Regulation in chapter 1 of Title 48 of the Code of Federal Regulations (the drug-free workplace coverage currently is in 48 CFR part 23, subpart 23.5).

Subpart B—Requirements for Recipients Other Than Individuals

What must I do to comply with this part?

There are two general requirements if you are a recipient other than an individual.

(a) First, you must make a good faith effort, on a continuing basis, to maintain a drug-free workplace. You must agree to do so as a condition for receiving any award covered by this part. The specific measures that you must take in this regard are described in more detail is subsequent sections of this subpart. Briefly, those measures are to—

(1) Publish a drug-free workplace statement and establish a drug-free awareness program for your employees (see §§ _.205 through _.220); and

(2) Take actions concerning employees who are convicted of violating drug statutes in the workplace (see § _.225).

(b) Second, you must identify all known workplaces under your Federal awards (see § _.230).

What must I include in my drug-free workplace statement?

You must publish a statement that

(a) Tells your employees that the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, or use of a controlled substance is prohibited in your workplace;

(b) Specifies the actions that you will take against employees for violating that prohibition; and

(c) Lets each employee know that, as a condition of employment under any award, he or she:

(1) Will abide by the terms of the statement; and

(2) Must notify you in writing if he or she is convicted for a violation of a criminal drug statute occurring in the workplace and must do so no more than five calendar days after the conviction.

To whom must I distribute my drug-free workplace statement?

You must require that a copy of the statement described in § _.205 be given to each employee who will be engaged in the performance of any Federal award.

What must I include in my drug-free awareness program?

You must establish an ongoing drug free awareness program to inform employees about—

(a) The dangers of drug abuse in the workplace;

(b) Your policy of maintaining a drug-free workplace;

(c) Any available drug counseling, rehabilitation, and employee assistance programs; and

(d) The penalties that you may impose upon them for drug abuse violations occurring in the workplace.

By when must I publish my drug-free workplace statement and establish my drug-free awareness program?

If you are a new recipient that does not already have a policy statement as Start Printed Page 3287described in § _.205 and an ongoing awareness program as described in § _.215, you must publish the statement and establish the program by the time given in the following table:

If . . .then you . . .
(a) the performance period of the award is less than 30 daysmust have the policy statement and program in place as soon as possible, but before the date on which performance is expected to be completed.
(b) the performance period of the award is 30 days or moremust have the policy statement and program in place within 30 days after award.
(c) you believe there are extraordinary circumstances that will require more than 30 days for you to publish the policy statement and establish the awareness programmay ask the [Agency adjective] awarding official to give you more time to do so. The amount of additional time, if any, to be given is at the discretion of the awarding official.
What actions must I take concerning employees who are convicted of drug violations in the workplace?

There are two actions you must take if an employee is convicted of a drug violation in the workplace:

(a) First, you must notify Federal agencies if an employee who is engaged in the performance of an award informs you about a conviction, as required by § _.205(c)(2), or you otherwise learn of the conviction. Your notification to the Federal agencies must—

(1) Be in writing;

(2) Include the employee's position title;

(3) Include the identification number(s) of each affected award;

(4) Be sent within ten calendar days after you learn of the conviction; and

(5) Be sent to every Federal agency on whose award the convicted employee was working. It must be sent to every awarding official or his or her official designee, unless the Federal agency has specified a central point for the receipt of the notices.

(b) Second, within 30 calendar days of learning about an employee's conviction, you must either—

(1) Take appropriate personnel action against the employee, up to and including termination, consistent with the requirements of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794), as amended; or

(2) Require the employee to participate satisfactorily in a drug abuse assistance or rehabilitation program approved for these purposes by a Federal, State or local health, law enforcement, or other appropriate agency.

How and when must I identify workplaces?

(a) You must identify all known workplaces under each [Agency adjective] award. A failure to do so is a violation of your drug-free workplace requirements. You may identify the workplaces—

(1) To the [Agency adjective] official that is making the award, either at the time of application or upon award; or

(2) In documents that you keep on file in your offices during the performance of the award, in which case you must make the information available for inspection upon request by [Agency adjective] officials or their designated representatives.

(b) Your workplace identification for an award must include the actual address of buildings (or parts of buildings) or other sites where work under the award takes place.

Categorical descriptions may be used (e.g., all vehicles of a mass transit authority or State highway department while in operation, State employees in each local unemployment office, performers in concert halls or radio studios).

(c) If you identified workplaces to the [Agency adjective] awarding official at the time of application or award, as described in paragraph (a)(1) of this section, and any workplace that you identified changes during the performance of the award, you must inform the [Agency adjective] awarding official.

Subpart C—Requirements for Recipients Who Are Individuals

What must I do to comply with this part if I am an individual recipient?

As a condition of receiving a(n) [Agency adjective] award, if you are an individual recipient, you must agree that—

(a) You will not engage in the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, or use of a controlled substance in conducting any activity related to the award; and

(b) If you are convicted of a criminal drug offense resulting from a violation occurring during the conduct of any award activity, you will report the conviction:

(1) In writing.

(2) Within 10 calendar days of the conviction.

(3) To the [Agency adjective] awarding official or other designee for each award that you currently have, unless § _.301 or the award document designates a central point for the receipt of the notices. When notice is made to a central point, it must include the identification number(s) of each affected award.

[Reserved]

Subpart D—Responsibilities of [Agency adjective] Awarding Officials

[Agency adjective] awarding official?

As a(n) [Agency adjective] awarding official, you must obtain each recipient's agreement, as a condition of the award, to comply with the requirements in—

(a) Subpart B of this part, if the recipient is not an individual; or

(b) Subpart C of this part, if the recipient is an individual.

Subpart E—Violations of this Part and Consequences

How are violations of this part determined for recipients other than individuals?

A recipient other than an individual is in violation of the requirements of this part if the [Agency head or designee] determines, in writing, that—

(a) The recipient has violated the requirements of Subpart B of this part; or

(b) The number of convictions of the recipient's employees for violating criminal drug statutes in the workplace is large enough to indicate that the recipient has failed to make a good faith effort to provide a drug-free workplace.

How are violations of this part determined for recipients who are individuals?

An individual recipient is in violation of the requirements of this part if the [Agency head or designee] determines, in writing, that—

(a) The recipient has violated the requirements of Subpart C of this part; or

(b) The recipient is convicted of a criminal drug offense resulting from a violation occurring during the conduct of any award activity.

What actions will the Federal Government take against a recipient determined to have violated this part?

If a recipient is determined to have violated this part, as described in § _.500 or § _.505, the [Agency noun] may take one or more of the following actions—

(a) Suspension of payments under the award;

(b) Suspension or termination of the award; and Start Printed Page 3288

(c) Suspension or debarment of the recipient under [CFR citation for the Federal agency's regulations implementing Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689], for a period not to exceed five years.

Are there any provision for exceptions to those actions?

The [Agency head] may waive with respect to a particular award, in writing, a suspension of payments under an award, suspension or termination of an award, or suspension or debarment of a recipient if the [Agency head] determines that such a waiver would be in the public interest. This exception authority cannot be delegated to any other official.

Subpart F—Definitions

Award.

Award means an award of financial assistance by the [Agency noun] or other Federal agency directly to a recipient.

(a) The term award includes:

(1) A Federal grant or cooperative agreement, in the form of money or property in lieu of money.

(2) A block grant or a grant in an entitlement program, whether or not the grant is exempted from coverage under the Governmentwide rule [Agency-specific CFR citation] that implements OMB Circular A-102 (for availability, see 5 CFR 1310.3) and specifies uniform administrative requirements.

(b) The term award does not include:

(1) Technical assistance that provides services instead of money.

(2) Loans.

(3) Loan guarantees.

(4) Interest subsidies.

(5) Insurance.

(6) Direct appropriations.

(7) Veterans’ benefits to individuals (i.e., any benefit to veterans, their families, or survivors by virtue of the service of a veteran in the Armed Forces of the United States).

Controlled substance.

Controlled substance means a controlled substance in schedules I through V of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812), and as further defined by regulation at 21 CFR 1308.11 through 1308.15.

Conviction.

Conviction means a finding of guilt (including a plea of nolo contendere) or imposition of sentence, or both, by any judicial body charged with the responsibility to determine violations of the Federal or State criminal drug statutes.

Cooperative agreement.

Cooperative agreement means an award of financial assistance that, consistent with 31 U.S.C. 6305, is used to enter into the same kind of relationship as a grant (see definition of grant in § _.650), except that substantial involvement is expected between the Federal agency and the recipient when carrying out the activity contemplated by the award. The term does not include cooperative research and development agreements as defined in 15 U.S.C. 3710a.

Criminal drug statute.

Criminal drug statute means a Federal or non-Federal criminal statute involving the manufacture, distribution, dispensing, use, or possession of any controlled substance.

Debarment.

Debarment means an action taken by a Federal agency to prohibit a recipient from participating in Federal Government procurement contracts and covered nonprocurement transactions. A recipient so prohibited is debarred, in accordance with the Federal Acquisition Regulation for procurement contracts (48 CFR part 9, subpart 9.4) and the common rule, Government-wide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement), that implements Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689.

Drug-free workplace.

Drug-free workplace means a site for the performance of work done in connection with a specific award at which employees of the recipient are prohibited from engaging in the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, or use of a controlled substance.

Employee.

(a) Employee means the employee of a recipient directly engaged in the performance of work under the award, including—

(1) All direct charge employees;

(2) All indirect charge employees, unless their impact or involvement in the performance of work under the award is insignificant to the performance of the award; and

(3) Temporary personnel and consultants who are directly engaged in the performance of work under the award and who are on the recipient's payroll.

(b) This definition does not include workers not on the payroll of the recipient (e.g., volunteers, even if used to meet a matching requirement; consultants or independent contractors not on the payroll; or employees of subrecipients or subcontractors in covered workplaces).

Federal agency or agency.

Federal agency or agency means any United States executive department, military department, government corporation, government controlled corporation, any other establishment in the executive branch (including the Executive Office of the President), or any independent regulatory agency.

Grant.

Grant means an award of financial assistance that, consistent with 31 U.S.C. 6304, is used to enter into a relationship—

(a) The principal purpose of which is to transfer a thing of value to the recipient to carry out a public purpose of support or stimulation authorized by a law of the United States, rather than to acquire property or services for the Federal Government's direct benefit or use; and

(b) In which substantial involvement is not expected between the Federal agency and the recipient when carrying out the activity contemplated by the award.

Individual.

Individual means a natural person.

Recipient.

Recipient means any individual, corporation, partnership, association, unit of government (except a Federal agency) or legal entity, however organized, that receives an award directly from a Federal agency.

State.

State means any of the States of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any territory or possession of the United States.

Suspension.

Suspension means an action taken by a Federal agency that immediately prohibits a recipient from participating in Federal Government procurement contracts and covered nonprocurement transactions for a temporary period, pending completion of an investigation and any judicial or administrative proceedings that may ensue. A recipient so prohibited is suspended, in accordance with the Federal Acquisition Regulation for procurement contracts (48 CFR part 9, subpart 9.4) and the common rule, Government-wide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement), that implements Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689. Suspension of a recipient Start Printed Page 3289is a distinct and separate action from suspension of an award or suspension of payments under an award.

Adoption of Proposed Common Rules

The adoption of the proposed common rules by the participating agencies, as modified by agency-specific text is set forth below:

OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT

5 CFR Part 970

RIN 3206-AJ31

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: J. David Cope, Debarring Official, Office of the Inspector General, U.S. Office of Personnel Management, 1900 E Street, NW., Washington, DC 20415, e-mail debar@opm.gov, fax (202) 606-2153.

ADDITIONAL SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Office of Personnel Management adopted the Nonprocurement Debarment and Suspension Common Rule on May 17, 1993, following the text of the governmentwide rule as published on May 26, 1988 (53 FR 19160). OPM did not adopt subpart F of the common rule, pertaining to requirements for drug-free workplace (grants), because the agency did not issue assistance awards, grants, or other forms of financial or nonfinancial assistance that would be covered by those provisions. For the same reasons, OPM is not adopting the separate regulatory part on drug-free workplace requirements that has been developed as part of this governmentwide regulatory package.

End Part Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Part 970

End List of Subjects Start Signature
Approved: Office of Personnel Management.

Kay Cole James,

Director.

End Signature

For the reasons stated in the common preamble, the Office of Personnel Management proposes to amend part 970 of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations as follows:

1. Part 970 is revised as set forth in instruction 1 at the end of the common preamble.:

Start Part

PART 970—GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

970.25
How is this part organized?
970.50
How is this part written?
970.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
970.100
What does this part do?
970.105
Does this part apply to me?
970.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
970.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
970.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
970.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
970.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
970.135
May the OPM exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
970.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
970.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
970.200
What is a covered transaction?
970.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
970.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
970.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
970.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
970.225
How do I know if a transaction in which I may participate in is a covered transaction?
Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
970.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
970.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
970.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
970.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
970.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?
970.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information Primary Tier Participants
970.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the OPM?
970.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § 970.330 will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
970.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 970.330?
970.345
What must I do if I learn of the information required under § 970.330 after entering into a covered transaction with the OPM?
Disclosing Information—Lower Tier Participants
970.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
970.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 970.350?
970.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 970.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of OPM Officials Regarding Transactions
970.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
970.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
970.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
970.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
970.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
970.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
970.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
970.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant?
970.440
What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?
970.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
970.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 970.330?
970.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 970.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
970.500
What is the purpose of the List?
970.505
Who uses the List?
970.510
Who maintains the List?
970.515
What specific information is on the List?
970.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
970.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
970.530
Where can I get the List?
Start Printed Page 3290 Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
970.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
970.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
970.610
What procedures does the OPM use in suspension and debarment actions?
970.615
How does the OPM notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
970.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
970.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
970.630
May the OPM impute the conduct of one person to another?
970.635
May the OPM settle a debarment or suspension action?
970.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
970.645
Do other Federal agencies know if the OPM agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
970.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
970.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
970.710
When does a suspension take effect?
970.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
970.720
How may I contest a suspension?
970.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
970.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
970.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
970.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
970.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
970.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
970.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
970.760
How long may my suspension last?
Subpart H—Debarment
970.800
What are the causes for debarment?
970.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
970.810
When does a debarment take effect?
970.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
970.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
970.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
970.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which a proposed debarment is based?
970.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
970.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
970.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
970.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
970.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
970.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
970.865
How long may my debarment last?
970.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
970.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
970.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
970.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
970.900
Adequate evidence.
970.905
Affiliate.
970.910
Agency.
970.915
Agent or representative.
970.920
Civil judgment.
970.925
Conviction.
970.930
Debarment
970.935
Debarring official.
970.940
Disqualified.
970.945
Excluded or exclusion.
970.950
Indictment.
970.955
Ineligible or ineligibility.
970.960
Legal proceedings.
970.965
List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified from Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs.
970.970
Nonprocurement transaction.
970.975
Notice.
970.980
Participant
970.985
Person.
970.990
Preponderance of the evidence.
970.995
Principal.
970.1000
Respondent.
970.1005
State.
970.1010
Suspending official.
970.1015
Suspension.
970.1020
Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded.
Subpart J [Reserved] Appendix to Part 970—Covered Transactions
Start Authority

Authority: Sec. 2455, Pub. L. 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327; E.O. 12549, 3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189; E.O. 12689, 3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235. 2. Part 970 is further amended as set forth below. a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “OPM” is added in its place wherever it occurs. b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “OPM” is added in its place wherever it occurs. c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “Debarring Official” is added in its place wherever it occurs. 3. Section 970.440 is added to read as follows:

End Authority
What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?

To communicate the requirement, you must include a term or condition in the transaction requiring the participants' compliance with subpart C of this part and requiring them to include a similar term or condition in lower-tier covered transactions.

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

7 CFR Parts 3017 and 3021

RIN 0505-AA11

ADDRESSES: Comments on the Department of Agriculture's additional provisions should be addressed to Patricia E. Healy, Acting Chief Financial Officer, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Room 143-W, Whitten Building, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20250.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gerald Miske, Fiscal Policy Division, Office of the Chief Financial Officer, 202-720-1553.

ADDITIONAL SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is publishing these proposed rules in order to update these two regulations, and to maintain governmentwide uniformity in grants management policy that is a primary objective of Pub. L. 106-107, “The Federal Financial Assistance Management Improvement Act of 1999.”

The requirements for maintaining a drug-free workplace are being removed as a subpart in the current debarment and suspension common rule, and re-codified as a separate part 3021.

The appendix that is referenced in § 3017.50 contains a model for covered transactions that would be accurate for all USDA agencies if USDA had not added certain exclusions in §§ 3017.215 and 3017.220. Therefore, it is necessary to clarify that the appendix contains a general model that will vary for certain categories of transactions in accordance with the exclusions from covered transactions in §§ 3017.215 and 3017.220.

USDA has limited covered transactions under its current debarment and suspension regulation (7 CFR part 3017) to primary tier transactions for all of its export and foreign assistance programs. USDA proposes to retain this limited coverage for most of its export and foreign assistance programs but to expand the coverage slightly for certain market development and foreign assistance programs. The coverage would be expanded to include: (1) Any lower tiers non procurement transaction between a nonprofit trade association or state regional group and a U.S. entity under the Market Excess Program; and (2) any procurement contract for ocean transportation under USDA's foreign assistance programs. The types of lower Start Printed Page 3291tier transactions that would be covered would be those in which the Department of Agriculture would be making an identifiable payment, directly or indirectly, to the participant in the specific lower tier transaction. In accordance with §§ 3017.215 (i) and 3017.220 (d), these two types of transactions would be the only lower tier nonprocurement or procurement transactions in USDA's export and foreign assistance programs that would be covered transactions under this regulation.

USDA has identified in § 3017.215 certain nonprocurement transactions that will not be covered by this regulation.

Under § 3017.220, USDA has included certain procurement contracts as covered transactions when the contract is for the procurement of ocean transportation in connection with USDA's export and foreign assistance programs.

In order to communicate requirements to lower-tier covered transactions, USDA has added § 3017.440 requiring USDA agencies to include a term in each agreement for participants' compliance with Subpart C.

In §§ 3017.755 (a) and 3017.870 (a) USDA has added the requirement that the record remain open for a full 30 days after the respondent receives the notice of suspension or debarment even if a submission in opposition is made before the 30 days expire. This requirement was included in order to make the timing of these actions clear.

USDA does not have a centralized appeal process and therefore has retained in § 3017.765 the appeal process established in the current USDA regulation on debarment.

End Part Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects

End List of Subjects Start Signature

Dated: June 1, 2001.

Patricia E. Healy,

Acting, Chief Financial Officer.

End Signature Start Signature

Dated: June 6, 2001.

Ann M. Veneman,

Secretary of Agriculture.

End Signature

For the reasons stated in the common preamble, the United States Department of Agriculture proposes to amend 7 CFR Chapter XXX as follows:

1. Part 3017 is revised to read as set forth in instruction 1 at the end of the common preamble.

Start Part

PART 3017—GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

3017.25
How is this part organized?
3017.50
How is this part written?
3017.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
3017.100
What does this part do?
3017.105
Does this part apply to me?
3017.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
3017.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
3017.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
3017.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
3017.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
3017.135
May the Department of Agriculture exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
3017.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
3017.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
3017.200
What is a covered transaction?
3017.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
3017.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
3017.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
3017.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
3017.225
How do I know if a transaction that I may participate in is a covered transaction?
Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
3017.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
3017.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
3017.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
3017.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
3017.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?
3017.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information—Primary Tier Participants
3017.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the Department of Agriculture.
3017.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § 3017.330 will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
3017.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 3017.330?
3017.345
What must I do if I learn of the information required under § 3017.330 after entering into a covered transaction with the Department of Agriculture?
Disclosing Information—Lower Tier Participants
3017.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
3017.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 3017.350?
3017.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 3017.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of Department of Agriculture Officials Regarding Transactions
3017.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
3017.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
3017.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
3017.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
3017.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
3017.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
3017.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified? Start Printed Page 3292
3017.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant?
3017.440
What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?
3017.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
3017.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 3017.330?
3017.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 3017.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
3017.500
What is the purpose of the List?
3017.505
Who uses the List?
3017.510
Who maintains the List?
3017.515
What specific information is on the List?
3017.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
3017.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
3017.530
Where can I get the List?
Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
3017.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
3017.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
3017.610
What procedures does the Department of Agriculture use in suspension and debarment actions?
3017.615
How does the Department of Agriculture notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
3017.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
3017.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
3017.630
May the Department of Agriculture impute the conduct of one person to another?
3017.635
May the Department of Agriculture settle a debarment or suspension action?
3017.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
3017.645
Do other Federal agencies know if the Department of Agriculture agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
3017.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
3017.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
3017.710
When does a suspension take effect?
3017.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
3017.720
How may I contest a suspension?
3017.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
3017.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
3017.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
3017.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
3017.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
3017.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
3017.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
3017.760
How long may my suspension last?
3017.765
How may I appeal my suspension?
Subpart H—Debarment
3017.800
What are the causes for debarment?
3017.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
3017.810
When does a debarment take effect?
3017.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
3017.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
3017.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
3017.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the proposed debarment is based?
3017.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
3017.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
3017.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
3017.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
3017.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
3017.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
3017.865
How long may my debarment last?
3017.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
3017.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
3017.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
3017.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
3017.890
How may I appeal my debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
3017.900
Adequate evidence.
3017.905
Affiliate.
3017.910
Agency.
3017.915
Agent or representative.
3017.920
Civil judgment.
3017.925
Conviction.
3017.930
Debarment.
3017.935
Debarring official.
3017.940
Disqualified.
3017.945
Excluded or exclusion.
3017.950
Indictment.
3017.955
Ineligible or ineligibility.
3017.960
Legal proceedings.
3017.965
List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs.
3017.970
Nonprocurement transaction.
3017.975
Notice.
3017.980
Participant.
3017.985
Person.
3017.990
Preponderance of the evidence.
3017.995
Principal.
3017.1000
Respondent.
3017.1005
State.
3017.1010
Suspending official.
3017.1015
Suspension.
3017.1020
Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded.
Subpart J [Reserved] Appendix to Part 3017—Covered Transactions
Start Authority

Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301; Pub. L. 101-576, 104 Stat. 2838; Sec. 2455, Pub. L. 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327 (31 U.S.C. 6101 note); E.O. 12549 (3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189); E.O. 12698 (3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235); 7 CFR part 2, subpart D, § 2.28. 2. Part 3017 is further amended as set forth below: a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “Department of Agriculture” is added in its place wherever it occurs. b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “Department of Agriculture” is added in its place wherever it occurs. c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “the Secretary of Agriculture or designee” is added in its place wherever it occurs. 3. Section 3017.50 is further amended by adding a sentence to the end of paragraph (c) to read as follows:

End Authority
How is this part written?

(c) * * * The “Covered Transactions” chart in the appendix to this part shows the general model for the levels or “tiers” at which the Department of Agriculture enforces an exclusion under this part. However, the chart in the appendix shows only the general model and the model will vary for certain categories of transactions in accordance with the exclusions from covered transactions in §§ 3017.215 and 3017.220.

4. Section 3017.215 is further amended by adding paragraphs (h) through (p) to read as follows:

Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
* * * * *

(h) An entitlement or mandatory award required by a statue, including a lower tier entitlement or mandatory award that is required by a statute.

(i) With respect to the Department of Agriculture's export and foreign assistance programs, any transaction below the primary tier covered transaction other than a nonprocurement transaction under the Start Printed Page 3293Market Access Program between a nonprofit trade association or state regional group and a U.S. entity, as defined in part 1485 of this title.

(j) Any transaction under the Department of Agriculture's conservation programs, warehouse licensing programs, or programs that provide statutory entitlements and make available loans to individuals and entities in their capacity as producers of agricultural commodities.

(k) The export or substitution of Federal timber governed by the Forest Resources Conservation and Shortage Relief Act of 1990, 16 U.S.C. 620 et seq. (The “Export Act”), which provides separate statutory authority to debar.

(l) The receipt of licenses, permits, certificates, and indemnification under regulatory programs conducted in the interest of public health and safety, and animal and plant health and safety.

(m) The receipt of official grading and inspection services, animal damage control services, public health and safety inspection services, and animal and plant health and safety inspection services.

(n) If the person is a State or local government, the provision of official grading and inspection services, animal damage control services, animal and plant health and safety inspection services.

(o) The receipt of licenses, permit, or certificates under regulatory programs conducted in the interest of ensuring fair trade practices.

(p) Permits, licenses, exchanges and other acquisitions of real property, rights of way, and easements under natural resource management programs.

5. Section 3017.220 is amended by adding paragraph (d) to read as follows:

Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
* * * * *

(d) The contract is for the procurement of ocean transportation in connection with the Department of Agriculture's foreign assistance programs. With respect to the Department of Agriculture's export and foreign assistance programs, such contracts are the only procurement contracts included as covered transactions, not withstanding the provisions in paragraphs (a) through (c) of this section.

6. Section 3017.440 is added to read as follows:

What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?

To communicate the requirement, you must include a term or condition in the transaction requiring the participants' compliance with Subpart C of this part and requiring them to include similar term or condition in lower-tier covered transactions.

7. Section 3017.755 is further amended by adding a sentence at the end of paragraph (a) to read as follows:

When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?

(a) * * * However, the record will remain open for the full 30 days, as called for in § 3017.725, even when you make a submission before the 30 days expire.

* * * * *

8. Section 3017.765 is added to subpart G to read as follows:

How may I appeal my suspension?

(a) An appeal may be filled only after the respondent has exhausted the option to contest the suspension in § 3017.720. The appeal must be filed within 30 days of receiving the decision required § 3017.755 and it must specify the basis of the appeal. The respondent must file the appeal in writing to the Hearing Clerk in the Office of Administrative Law Judges (OALJ), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Washington, DC 20250. The decision of a suspending official under § 3017.700 may be vacated by the assigned appeals officer only if the officer determines that the decision is:

(1) Not in accordance with law;

(2) Not based on the applicable standard of evidence; or

(3) Arbitrary and capricious and an abuse of discretion.

(b) The appeals officer will base the decision solely on the administrative record.

(c) Within 90 days of the date the appeal is filed with USDA's OALJ Hearing Clerk, the appeals officer will notify, in writing, the respondent(s) and the suspending official, who took the action being appealed, of the decision.

(d) The appeals officer's decision is final and it not appealable within USDA.

9. Section 3017.800 is further amended by adding paragraph (e) to read as follows:

What are the causes of debarment?
* * * * *

(e) Notwithstanding paragraph (c) (1) of this section, within the Department of Agriculture a nonprocurement debarment by any Federal agency taken before March 1, 1989.

10. Section 3017.870 is further amended by adding a sentence to the end of paragraph (a) to read as follows:

When do I know if the debarring official debars me?

(a) * * * However, the record will remain open for the full 30 days, as called for in § 3017.820, even when you make a submission before the 30 days expire.

* * * * *

11. Section 3017.890 is added to subpart H to read as follows:

How may I appeal my debarment?

(a) An appeal may be filed only after the respondent has exhausted the option to contest the debarment in § 3017.815. The appeal must be filed within 30 days of receiving the decision required § 3017.870 and it must specify the basis of the appeal. The respondent must file the appeal in writing to the Hearing Clerk in the Office of Administrative Law Judges (OALJ), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Washington, DC 20250. The decision of a debarring official under § 3017.800 may be vacated by the assigned appeals officer only if the officer determines that the decision is:

(1) Not in accordance with law;

(2) Not based on the applicable standard of evidence; or

(3) Arbitrary and capricious and an abuse of discretion.

(b) The appeals officer will base the decision solely on the administrative record.

(c) Within 90 days of the date the appeal is filed with USDA's OALJ Hearing

Clerk, the appeals officer will notify, in writing, the respondent(s) and the debarring official, who took the action being appealed, of the decision.

(d) The appeals officer's decision is final and it not appealable within USDA.

12. Section 3017.935 is further amended by adding paragraph (b) to read as follows:

Debarring official.
* * * * *

(b) Within USDA, the Secretary has designated the Administrators of program agencies to be the debarring official, i.e. Administrator, Food and Nutrition Service. Further, the Secretary authorizes these officials to delegate any and all functions except for making the final decision. Final decision includes the decision to initiate, maintain, or continue a debarment.

13. Section 3017.1010 is further amended by adding paragraph (b) to read as follows:

Suspending official.
* * * * *
Start Printed Page 3294

(b) Within USDA, the Secretary has designated the Administrators of program agencies to be the suspending official, i.e. Administrator, Food and Nutrition Service. Further, the Secretary authorizes these officials to delegate any and all functions except for making the final decision. Final decision includes the decision to initiate, maintain, or continue a suspension.

14. Part 3021 is added to read as set forth in instruction 2 at the end of the common preamble.

End Part Start Part

PART 3021—GOVERNMENTWIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE (FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE)

Subpart A—Purpose and Coverage
3021.100
What does this part do?
3021.105
Does this part apply to me?
3021.110
Are any of my Federal assistance awards exempt from this part?
3021.115
Does this part affect the Federal contracts that I receive?
Subpart B—Requirements for Recipients Other Than Individuals
3021.200
What must I do to comply with this part?
3021.205
What must I include in my drug-free workplace statement?
3021.210
To whom must I distribute my drug-free workplace statement?
3021.215
What must I include in my drug-free awareness program?
3021.220
By when must I publish my drug-free workplace statement and establish my drug-free awareness program?
3021.225
What actions must I take concerning employees who are convicted of drug violations in the workplace?
3021.230
How and when must I identify workplaces?
Subpart C—Requirements for Recipients Who Are Individuals
3021.300
What must I do to comply with this part if I am an individual recipient?
3021.301
[Reserved]
Subpart D—Responsibilities of Department of Agriculture Awarding Officials
3021.400
What are my responsibilities as a Department of Agriculture awarding official?
Subpart E—Violations of This Part and Consequences
3021.500
How are violations of this part determined for recipients other than individuals?
3021.505
How are violations of this part determined for recipients who are individuals?
3021.510
What actions will the Federal Government take against a recipient determined to have violated this part?
3021.515
Are there any exceptions to those actions?
Subpart F—Definitions
3021.605
Award.
3021.610
Controlled substance.
3021.615
Conviction.
3021.620
Cooperative agreement.
3021.625
Criminal drug statute.
3021.630
Debarment.
3021.635
Drug-free workplace.
3021.640
Employee.
3021.645
Federal agency or agency.
3021.650
Grant.
3021.655
Individual.
3021.660
Recipient.
3021.665
State.
3021.670
Suspension.
Start Authority

Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301; 41 U.S.C. 701, et seq.; Pub. L. 101-576, 104 Stat. 2838; 7 CFR Part 2, Subpart D, § 2.28.

End Authority

15. Part 3021 is further amended as set forth below:

a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “Department of Agriculture” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “Department of Agriculture” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “the Secretary of Agriculture or designee” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

d. “[Agency head]” is removed and “the Secretary of Agriculture” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

16. Section 3021.510(c) is further amended by removing “[CFR citation for the Federal Agency's regulations implementing Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689]” and adding “7 CFR part 3017” in its place.

17. Section 3021.605 (a)(2) is further amended by removing “[Agency-specific CFR citation]” and adding “7 CFR part 3016” in its place.

DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY

10 CFR Parts 606, 607 and 1036

RIN 1991-AB56

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Cynthia G. Yee, 202-586-1140; cynthia.yee@hq.doe.gov.

ADDITIONAL SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The administrative practices and procedures for suspension and debarment are being removed from part 1036 and recodified in part 606. The requirements for maintaining a drug-free workplace are being removed as a subpart in the current debarment and suspension common rule, part 1036, and recodified as a separate part 607.

End Part Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects

End List of Subjects Start Signature

Dated: June 29, 2001.

Spencer Abraham,

Secretary of Energy.

End Signature

Accordingly, as set forth in the common preamble, and under the authority of 42 U.S.C. 7101 et seq. and 50 U.S.C. 2401 et seq., the Department of Energy proposes to amend 10 CFR chapters II and X as follows.

1. Part 606 is added to subchapter H to read as set forth in instruction 1 at the end of the common preamble.

Start Part

PART 606—GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

606.25
How is this part organized?
606.50
How is this part written?
606.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
606.100
What does this part do?
606.105
Does this part apply to me?
606.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
606.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
606.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
606.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
606.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
606.135
May the Department of Energy exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
606.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
606.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
606.200
What is a covered transaction?
606.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
606.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
606.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
606.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
606.225
How do I know if a transaction that I may participate in is a covered transaction?
Start Printed Page 3295 Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
606.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
606.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
606.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
606.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
606.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?
606.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information—Primary Tier Participants
606.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the Department of Energy?
606.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § 606.330 will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
606.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 606.330?
606.345
What must I do if I learn of the information required under § 606.330 after entering into a covered transaction with the Department of Energy?
Disclosing information—Lower Tier Participants
606.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
606.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 606.350?
606.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 606.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of DOE Officials Regarding Transactions
606.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
606.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
606.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
606.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
606.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
606.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
606.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
606.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant?
606.440
What method do I use to communicate to participants the requirement to comply with Subpart C?
606.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
606.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 606.330?
606.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 606.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
606.500
What is the purpose of the List?
606.505
Who uses the List?
606.510
Who maintains the List?
606.515
What specific information is on the List?
606.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
606.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
606.530
Where can I get the List?
Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
606.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
606.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
606.610
What procedures does the Department of Energy use in suspension and debarment actions?
606.615
How does the Department of Energy notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
606.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
606.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
606.630
May the Department of Energy impute the conduct of one person to another?
606.635
May the Department of Energy settle a debarment or suspension action?
606.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
606.645
Do other Federal agencies know if the Department of Energy agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
606.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
606.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
606.710
When does a suspension take effect?
606.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
606.720
How may I contest a suspension?
606.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
606.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
606.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
606.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
606.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
606.746
Who conducts fact-finding conferences for DOE?
606.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
606.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
606.760
How long may my suspension last?
Subpart H—Debarment
606.800
What are the causes for debarment?
606.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
606.810
When does a debarment take effect?
606.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
606.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
606.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
606.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the proposed debarment is based?
606.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
606.836
Who conducts fact-finding conferences for DOE?
606.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
606.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
606.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
606.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
606.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
606.865
How long may my debarment last?
606.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
606.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
606.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
606.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
606.900
Adequate evidence.
606.905
Affiliate.
606.910
Agency.
606.915
Agent or representative.
606.920
Civil judgment.
606.925
Conviction.
606.930
Debarment.
606.935
Debarring official.
606.936
Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management.
606.940
Disqualified.
606.945
Excluded or exclusion.
606.950
Indictment.
606.955
Ineligible or ineligibility.
606.960
Legal proceedings.
606.965
List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs.
606.970
Nonprocurement transaction.
606.975
Notice.
606.980
Participant. Start Printed Page 3296
606.985
Person.
606.990
Preponderance of the evidence.
606.995
Principal.
606.1000
Respondent.
606.1005
State.
606.1010
Suspending official.
606.1015
Suspension.
606.1020
Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded.
Subpart J [Reserved] Appendix to Part 606—Covered Transactions
Start Authority

Authority: E.O. 12549 (3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189); E.O. 12689 (3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235); sec. 2455, Pub. L. 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327 (31 U.S.C. 6101 note); 42 U.S.C. 7101 et seq.; 50 U.S.C. 2401 et seq. 2. Part 606 is further amended as set forth below. a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “Department of Energy” is added in its place wherever it occurs. b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “DOE” is added in its place wherever it occurs. c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “Director, Office of Procurement and “Assistance Management” is added in its place wherever it occurs. 3. Section 606.440 is added to read as follows:

End Authority
What method do I use to communicate to participants the requirement to comply with subpart C?

To communicate the requirements, you must include a term or condition in the transaction requiring the participants' compliance with subpart C of this part and requiring them to include a similar term or condition in lower-tier covered transactions.

4. Section 606.746 is added to read as follows:

Who conducts fact-finding conferences for DOE?

The Energy Board of Contract Appeals conducts fact-finding conferences for DOE, in accordance with the rules promulgated by the Energy Board of Contract Appeals.

5. Section 606.836 is added to read as follows:

Who conducts fact-finding conferences for DOE?

The Energy Board of Contract Appeals conducts fact-finding conferences for DOE, in accordance with the rules promulgated by the Energy Board of Contract Appeals.

6. Section 606.910 is further amended by adding a definition for Department of Energy in alphabetical order to read as follows:

Agency.
* * * * *

Department of Energy includes the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

7. Section 606.935 is further amended by adding paragraph (b) to read as follows:

Debarring official.
* * * * *

(b) The DOE debarring official is the Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management, DOE.

8. Section 606.936 is added to read as follows:

Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management.

Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management means the Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management, DOE, or the Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management, NNSA, as appropriate.

9. Section 606.1010 is further amended by adding paragraph (b) to read as follows:

Suspending official.
* * * * *

(b) The DOE suspending official is the Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management, DOE.

10. Part 607 is added to subchapter H to read as set forth in instruction 2 at the end of the common preamble.

End Part Start Part

PART 607—GOVERNMENTWIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE (FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE)

Subpart A—Purpose and Coverage
607.100
What does this part do?
607.105
Does this part apply to me?
607.110
Are any of my Federal assistance awards exempt from this part?
607.115
Does this part affect the Federal contracts that I receive?
Subpart B—Requirements for Recipients Other Than Individuals
607.200
What must I do to comply with this part?
607.205
What must I include in my drug-free workplace statement?
607.210
To whom must I distribute my drug-free workplace statement?
607.215
What must I include in my drug-free awareness program?
607.220
By when must I publish my drug-free workplace statement and establish my drug-free awareness program?
607.225
What actions must I take concerning employees who are convicted of drug violations in the workplace?
607.230
How and when must I identify workplaces?
Subpart C—Requirements for Recipients Who Are Individuals
607.300
What must I do to comply with this part if I am an individual recipient?
607.301
[Reserved]
Subpart D—Responsibilities of DOE Awarding Officials
607.400
What are my responsibilities as a DOE awarding official?
Subpart E—Violations of This Part and Consequences
607.500
How are violations of this part determined for recipients other than individuals?
607.505
How are violations of this part determined for recipients who are individuals?
607.510
What actions will the Federal Government take against a recipient determined to have violated this part?
607.515
Are there any exceptions to those actions?
Subpart F—Definitions
607.605
Award.
607.610
Controlled substance.
607.615
Conviction.
607.620
Cooperative agreement.
607.625
Criminal drug statute.
607.630
Debarment.
607.631
Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management.
607.635
Drug-free workplace.
607.640
Employee.
607.645
Federal agency or agency.
607.650
Grant.
607.655
Individual.
607.660
Recipient.
607.665
State.
607.670
Suspension.
Start Authority

Authority: 41 U.S.C. 701, et seq.; 42 U.S.C. 7101 et seq.; 50 U.S.C. 2401 et seq.

End Authority

11. Part 607 is further amended as set forth below.

a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “Department of Energy” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “DOE” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

d. “[Agency head]” is removed and “Secretary of Energy” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

12. Section 607.510(c) is further amended by removing “[CFR citation for the Federal agency's regulations implementing Executive order 12549 and Executive Order 12689]” and adding “10 CFR part 606” in its place.

13. Section 607.605(a)(2) is further amended by removing “[Agency-specific CFR citation]” and adding “10 CFR Part 600” in its place.

14. Section 607.631 is added to read as follows:

Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management.

Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management means the Director, Office of Procurement and Start Printed Page 3297Assistance Management, DOE, or the Director, Office of Procurement and Assistance Management, NNSA, as appropriate.

15. Section 607.645 is further amended by adding the definition for Department of Energy in alphabetical order to read as follows:

Federal Agency or agency.

Department of Energy includes the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

* * * * *
End Part Start Part

PART 1036—[REMOVED]

16. Part 1036 is removed.

SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION

13 CFR Parts 145 and 147

RIN 3245-AE61

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Cory Whitehead, SBA Debarring Official, Acting Assistant Administrator for Administration (5331), U.S. Small Business Administration, 409 Third Street, SW, Washington, DC 20416, (202) 205-6630, e-mail: cory.whitehead@sba.gov or Michael Campilongo, Office of General Counsel, 409 Third Street, SW, Washington, DC 20416, (202) 205-6879, e-mail: michael.campilongo@sba.gov.

ADDITIONAL SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This part proposes optional lower tier suspension and debarment coverage by including a paragraph (d) in § 145.220 for all contracts that equal or exceed the $25,000 award threshold under SBA nonprocurement transactions. This election maintains the SBA's present practice under the common rule.

In addition, § 145.440 proposes to use terms or conditions to the award transaction as a means to enforce exclusions under SBA transactions rather than written certifications. This alternative available under the common rule is more efficient than the SBA's current certification process for prospective recipients and participants.

Sections 145.765 and 145.890 are included as additional sections under part 145 and propose to permit persons who have been suspended or debarred by the SBA Debarring Official to obtain a review of that decision on a limited basis as is currently available under SBA's existing rule. These sections propose to delegate the authority to issue a stay on a suspension or debarment decision to the reviewing official. These changes from current practice reflect a more practical approach to matters accepted for review.

Sections 145.935(b) and 145.1010(b) are added to designate the Assistant Administrator for Administration as the SBA debarring and suspending official for SBA programs other than financial assistance. For that program, the SBA debarring and suspending official will be the Assistant Administrator for Financial Assistance.

Section 145.995 of the debarment and suspension common rule defines the term “principal.” Agencies implementing the common rule are permitted to provide additional examples of principals that are commonly involved in their covered transactions. SBA is proposing to include several examples by adding a paragraph (c) to this section for the benefit of individuals who may be excluded, or employers who may have an individual employee who is excluded.

The requirements for maintaining a drug-free workplace are being removed as Subpart F in the current debarment and suspension common rule, and re-codified as a separate part 147.

End Part Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects

End List of Subjects Start Signature

Dated: June 15, 2001.

John Whitmore,

Acting Administrator, U.S. Small Business Administration.

End Signature

For the reasons stated in the common preamble, the U.S. Small Business Administration proposes to amend 13 CFR chapter I as follows:

1. Part 145 is revised to read as set forth in instruction 1 at the end of the common preamble.

Start Part

PART 145—GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

145.25
How is this part organized?
145.50
How is this part written?
145.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
145.100
What does this part do?
145.105
Does this part apply to me?
145.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
145.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
145.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
145.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
145.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
145.135
May the SBA exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
145.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
145.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
145.200
What is a covered transaction?
145.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
145.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
145.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
145.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
145.225
How do I know if a transaction that I may participate in is a covered transaction?
Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
145.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
145.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
145.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
145.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
145.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?
145.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information—Primary Tier Participants
145.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the SBA?
145.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § 145.330 will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
145.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 145.330?
145.345
What must I do if I learn of the information required under § 145.330 Start Printed Page 3298after entering into a covered transaction with the SBA?
Disclosing Information—Lower Tier Participants
145.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
145.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 145.350?
145.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 145.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of SBA Officials Regarding Transactions
145.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
145.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
145.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
145.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
145.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
145.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
145.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
145.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant?
145.440
What method do I use to communicate § 145.335 requirements to participants?
145.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
145.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 145.330?
145.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 145.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
145.500
What is the purpose of the List?
145.505
Who uses the List?
145.510
Who maintains the List?
145.515
What specific information is on the List?
145.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
145.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
145.530
Where can I get the List?
Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
145.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
145.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
145.610
What procedures does the SBA use in suspension and debarment actions?
145.615
How does the SBA notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
145.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
145.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
145.630
May the SBA impute the conduct of one person to another?
145.635
May the SBA settle a debarment or suspension action?
145.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
145.645
Do other Federal agencies know if the SBA agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
145.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
145.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
145.710
When does a suspension take effect?
145.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
145.720
How may I contest a suspension?
145.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
145.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
145.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
145.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
145.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
145.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
145.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
145.760
How long may my suspension last?
145.765
How may I appeal my suspension?
Subpart H—Debarment
145.800
What are the causes for debarment?
145.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
145.810
When does a debarment take effect?
145.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
145.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
145.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
145.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the proposed debarment is based?
145.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
145.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
145.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
145.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
145.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
145.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
145.865
How long may my debarment last?
145.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
145.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
145.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
145.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
145.890
How may I appeal my debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
145.900
Adequate evidence.
145.905
Affiliate.
145.910
Agency.
145.915
Agent or representative.
145.920
Civil judgment.
145.925
Conviction.
145.930
Debarment.
145.935
Debarring official.
145.940
Disqualified.
145.945
Excluded or exclusion.
145.950
Indictment.
145.955
Ineligible or ineligibility.
145.960
Legal proceedings.
145.965
List of parties excluded or disqualified from federal procurement and nonprocurement programs.
145.970
Nonprocurement transaction.
145.975
Notice.
145.980
Participant.
144.985
Person.
145.990
Preponderance of the evidence.
145.995
Principal.
145.1000
Respondent.
145.1005
State.
145.1010
Suspending official.
145.1015
Suspension.
145.1020
Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded.
Subpart J [Reserved] Appendix to Part 145—Covered Transactions
Start Authority

Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301 et seq.; 15 U.S.C. 631 et seq.; Sec. 2455, Pub. L. 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327 (31 U.S.C. 6101 note); E.O. 11738, 3 CFR, 1973 Comp., p. 799; E.O. 12549, 3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189; E.O. 12689, 3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235.

End Authority

2. Part 145 is further amended as set forth below.

a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and the “SBA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and the “SBA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and the “SBA Debarring Official” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

3. Section 145.220 is further amended by adding a paragraph (d) to read as follows:

Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
* * * * *

(d) The contract is awarded by any contractor, subcontractor, supplier, consultant or its agent or representative in any transaction, regardless of tier, to be funded or provided by the SBA under a nonprocurement transaction Start Printed Page 3299that is expected to equal or exceed $25,000. (See optional lower tier coverage shown in the diagram in the appendix to this part.)

4. Section 145.440 is added to read as follows:

What method do I use to communicate § 145.435 requirements to participants?

To communicate the requirements in § 145.435 to participants, you must include a term or condition in the transaction requiring the participant's compliance with Subpart C of this part and requiring them to include a similar term or condition in lower tier covered transactions.

5. Section 145.765 is added to subpart G to read as follows:

How may I appeal my suspension?

(a) If the SBA suspending official issues a decision under § 145.755 to continue your suspension after you present information in opposition to that suspension under § 145.720, you can ask for review of the suspending official's decision in two ways:

(1) You may ask the suspending official to reconsider the decision for material errors of fact or law that you believe will change the outcome of the matter; and/or

(2) You may request that the SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA), review the suspending official's decision to continue your suspension within 30 days of your receipt of the suspending official's decision under § 145.755 or paragraph (a)(1) of this section. However, OHA can reverse the suspending official's decision only where OHA finds that the decision is based on a clear error of material fact or law, or where OHA finds that the suspending official's decision was arbitrary, capricious, or an abuse of discretion.

(b) A request for review under this section must be in writing; state the specific findings you believe to be in error; and include the reasons or legal bases for your position.

(c) OHA, in its discretion, may stay the suspension pending review of the suspending official's decision.

(d) The SBA suspending official and OHA must notify you of their decisions under this section, in writing, using the notice procedures at §§ 145.615 and 145.975.

6. Section 145.890 is added to subpart H to read as follows:

How may I appeal my debarment?

(a) If the SBA debarring official issues a decision under § 145.870 to debar you after you present information in opposition to a proposed debarment under § 145.815, you can ask for review of the debarring official's decision in two ways:

(1) You may ask the debarring official to reconsider the decision for material errors of fact or law that you believe will change the outcome of the matter; and/or

(2) You may request that the SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA), review the debarring official's decision to debar you within 30 days of your receipt of the debarring official's decision under § 145.870 or paragraph (a)(1) of this section. However, OHA can reverse the debarring official's decision only where OHA finds that the decision is based on a clear error of material fact or law, or where OHA finds that the debarring official's decision was arbitrary, capricious, or an abuse of discretion.

(b) A request for review under this section must be in writing; state the specific findings you believe to be in error; and include the reasons or legal bases for your position.

(c) OHA may, in its discretion, stay the debarment pending review of the debarring official's decision.

(d) The SBA debarring official and OHA must notify you of their decisions under this section, in writing, using the notice procedures at §§ 145.615 and 145.975.

7. Section 145.935 is further amended by adding a paragraph (b) to read as follows:

Debarring official.
* * * * *

(b) For SBA, the suspending official for financial assistance programs means the Assistant Administrator for Financial Assistance; for all other programs, the suspending official means the Assistant Administrator for Administration.

8. Section 145.995 is further amended by adding a paragraph (c) to read as follows:

Principal.
* * * * *

(c) Other examples of individuals who are principals in SBA covered transactions include:

(1) Principal investigators.

(2) Securities brokers and dealers under the section 7(a) Loan, Certified Development Company (CDC) and Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) programs.

(3) Applicant representatives under the section 7(a) Loan, Certified Development Company (CDC), Small Business Investment Company (SBIC), Small Business Development Center (SBDC), and section 7(j) programs.

(4) Providers of professional services under section 7(a) Loan, Certified Development Company (CDC), Small Business Investment Company (SBIC), Small Business Development Center (SBDC), and section 7(j) programs.

(5) Individuals that certify, authenticate or authorize billings.

9. Section 145.1010 is further amended by adding a paragraph (b) to read as follows:

Suspending official.
* * * * *

(b) For SBA, the debarring official for financial assistance programs means the Assistant Administrator for Financial Assistance; for all other programs, the debarring official means the Assistant Administrator for Administration.

10. Part 147 is added to read as set forth in instruction 2 at the end of the common preamble.

End Part Start Part

PART 147—GOVERNMENTWIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE (NONPROCUREMENT)

Subpart A—Purpose and Coverage
147.100
What does this part do?
147.105
Does this part apply to me?
147.110
Are any of my Federal assistance awards exempt from this part?
147.115
Does this part affect the Federal contracts that I receive?
Subpart B—Requirements for Recipients Other Than Individuals
147.200
What must I do to comply with this part?
147.205
What must I include in my drug-free workplace statement?
147.210
To whom must I distribute my drug-free workplace statement?
147.215
What must I include in my drug-free awareness program?
147.220
By when must I publish my drug-free workplace statement and establish my drug-free awareness program?
147.225
What actions must I take concerning employees who are convicted of drug violations in the workplace?
147.230
How and when must I identify workplaces?
Subpart C—Requirements for Recipients Who Are Individuals
147.300
What must I do to comply with this part if I am an individual recipient?
147.301
[Reserved]
Subpart D—Responsibilities of SBA Awarding Officials
147.400
What are my responsibilities as an SBA awarding official?
Subpart E—Violations of This Part and Consequences
147.500
How are violations of this part determined for recipients other than individuals? Start Printed Page 3300
147.505
How are violations of this part determined for recipients who are individuals?
147.510
What actions will the Federal Government take against a recipient determined to have violated this part?
147.515
Are there any exceptions to those actions?
Subpart F—Definitions
147.605
Award.
147.610
Controlled substance.
147.615
Conviction.
147.620
Cooperative agreement.
147.625
Criminal drug statute.
147.630
Debarment.
147.635
Drug-free workplace.
147.640
Employee.
147.645
Federal agency or agency.
147.650
Grant.
147.655
Individual.
147.660
Recipient.
147.665
State.
147.670
Suspension.
Start Authority

Authority: 41 U.S.C. 701-707.

End Authority

11. Part 147 is further amended as set forth below.

a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and the “SBA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and the “SBA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and the “SBA Administrator or designee” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

d. “[Agency head]” is removed and the “SBA Administrator” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

12. Section 147.510(c) is further amended by removing “[CFR citation for the Federal Agency's regulations implementing Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689]” and adding “13 CFR part 145” in its place.

13. Section 147.605(a)(2) is amended by removing “[Agency specific CFR citation]” and adding “13 CFR part 147” in its place.

NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION

14 CFR Parts 1265 and 1267

RIN 2700-AC43

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Diane Thompson, NASA Headquarters, Office of Procurement, Analysis Division (Code HC), Washington, DC 20456-0001, (202) 358-0514, e-mail: diane.thompson@hq.nasa.gov.

End Part Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects

End List of Subjects Start Signature

Anne Guenther,

Acting Associate Administrator for Procurement.

End Signature

For the reasons stated in the common preamble, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration proposes to amend 14 CFR chapter V as follows:

1. Part 1265 is revised to read as set forth in instruction 1 at the end of the common preamble.

Start Part

PART 1265—GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

1265.25
How is this part organized?
1265.50
How is this part written?
1265.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
1265.100
What does this part do?
1265.105
Does this part apply to me?
1265.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
1265.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
1265.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
1265.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
1265.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
1265.135
May NASA exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
1265.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
1265.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
1265.200
What is a covered transaction?
1265.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
1265.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
1265.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
1265.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
1265.225
How do I know if a transaction that I may participate in is a covered transaction?
Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
1265.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
1265.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
1265.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
1265.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
1265.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?
1265.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information Primary Tier Participants
1265.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with NASA?
1265.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § 1265.330 will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
1265.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 1265.330?
1265.345
What must I do if I learn of the information required under § 1265.330 after entering into a covered transaction with NASA?
Disclosing Information—Lower Tier Participants
1265.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
1265.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 1265.350?
1265.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 1265.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of NASA Officials Regarding Transactions
1265.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
1265.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
1265.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
1265.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
1265.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
1265.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
1265.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
1265.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant? Start Printed Page 3301
1265.440
What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?
1265.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
1265.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 1265.330?
1265.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 1265.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
1265.500
What is the purpose of the List?
1265.505
Who uses the List?
1265.510
Who maintains the List?
1265.515
What specific information is on the List?
1265.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
1265.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
1265.530
Where can I get the List?
Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
1265.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
1265.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
1265.610
What procedures does NASA use in suspension and debarment actions?
1265.615
How does NASA notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
1265.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
1265.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
1265.630
May NASA impute the conduct of one person to another?
1265.635
May NASA settle a debarment or suspension action?
1265.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
1265.645
Do other Federal agencies know if NASA agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
1265.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
1265.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
1265.710
When does a suspension take effect?
1265.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
1265.720
How may I contest a suspension?
1265.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
1265.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
1265.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
1265.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
1265.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
1265.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
1265.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
1265.760
How long may my suspension last?
1265.765
How may I appeal my suspension?
Subpart H—Debarment
1265.800
What are the causes for debarment?
1265.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
1265.810
When does a debarment take effect?
1265.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
1265.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
1265.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
1265.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the proposed debarment is based?
1265.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
1265.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
1265.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
1265.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
1265.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
1265.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
1265.865
How long may my debarment last?
1265.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
1265.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
1265.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
1265.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
1265.890
How may I appeal my debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
1265.900
Adequate evidence.
1265.905
Affiliate.
1265.910
Agency.
1265.915
Agent or representative.
1265.920
Civil judgment.
1265.925
Conviction.
1265.930
Debarment.
1265.935
Debarring official.
1265.940
Disqualified.
1265.945
Excluded or exclusion.
1265.950
Indictment.
1265.955
Ineligible or ineligibility.
1265.960
Legal proceedings.
1265.965
List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs.
1265.970
Nonprocurement transaction.
1265.975
Notice.
1265.980
Participant.
1265.985
Person.
1265.990
Preponderance of the evidence.
1265.995
Principal.
1265.1000
Respondent.
1265.1005
State.
1265.1010
Suspending official.
1265.1015
Suspension.
1265.1020
Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded.
Subpart J [Reserved] Appendix to Part 1265—Covered Transactions
Start Authority

Authority: Sec. 2455, Pub. L. 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327 (31 U.S.C. 6101 note); E.O. 11738, 3 CFR, 1973 Comp., p. 799; E.O. 12549, 3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189; E.O. 12689, 3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235; 42 U.S.C. 2473(c)(1).

End Authority

2. Part 1265 is further amended as set forth below.

a. “The [Agency noun]” is removed and “NASA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “NASA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “Associate Administrator for Procurement” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

3. Section 1265.440 is added to read as follows:

What method do I use to communicate the requirements to participants?

To communicate the requirements to participants, you must include a term or condition in the transaction requiring the participant's compliance with Subpart C of this part and requiring them to include a similar term or condition in lower tier covered transactions.

4. Part 1267 is added to read as set forth in instruction 2 at the end of the common preamble.

End Part Start Part

PART 1267—GOVERNMENTWIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE (FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE)

Subpart A—Purpose and Coverage
1267.100
What does this part do?
1267.105
Does this part apply to me?
1267.110
Are any of my Federal assistance awards exempt from this part?
1267.115
Does this part affect the Federal contracts that I receive?
Subpart B—Requirements for Recipients Other Than Individuals
1267.200
What must I do to comply with this part?
1267.205
What must I include in my drug-free workplace statement?
1267.210
To whom must I distribute my drug-free workplace statement?
1267.215
What must I include in my drug-free awareness program? Start Printed Page 3302
1267.220
By when must I publish my drug-free workplace statement and establish my drug-free awareness program?
1267.225
What actions must I take concerning employees who are convicted of drug violations in the workplace?
1267.230
How and when must I identify workplaces?
Subpart C—Requirements for Recipients Who Are Individuals
1267.300
What must I do to comply with this part if I am an individual recipient?
1267.301
[Reserved]
Subpart D—Responsibilities of NASA Awarding Officials
1267.400
What are my responsibilities as a NASA awarding official?
Subpart E—Violations of This Part and Consequences
1267.500
How are violations of this part determined for recipients other than individuals?
1267.505
How are violations of this part determined for recipients who are individuals?
1267.510
What actions will the Federal Government take against a recipient determined to have violated this part?
1267.515
Are there any exceptions to those actions?
Subpart F—Definitions
1267.605
Award.
1267.610
Controlled substance.
1267.615
Conviction.
1267.620
Cooperative agreement.
1267.625
Criminal drug statute.
1267.630
Debarment.
1267.635
Drug-free workplace.
1267.640
Employee.
1267.645
Federal agency or agency.
1267.650
Grant.
1267.655
Individual.
1267.660
Recipient.
1267.665
State.
1267.670
Suspension.
Start Authority

Authority: 41 U.S.C. 701 et seq.; 42 U.S.C. 2473c.

End Authority

5. Part 1267 is further amended as set forth below.

a. “The [Agency noun]” is removed and “NASA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “NASA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “Associate Administrator for Procurement” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

d. “[Agency head]” is removed and “Associate Administrator for Procurement” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

6. Section 1267.510(c) is further amended by removing “[CFR citation for the Federal Agency's regulations implementing Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689]” and adding “14 CFR part 1265” in its place.

7. Section 1267.605(a)(2) is further amended by removing “[Agency-specific CFR citation]” and adding “14 CFR part 1273” in its place.

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

15 CFR Parts 26 and 29

[Docket No. 950601145-5145-01]

RIN 0605-AA02

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Elizabeth L. Dorfman, Office of Executive Assistance Management, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW., Room HCHB 6022, Washington, DC 20230, 202-482-4115, e-mail: EDorfman@doc.gov.

ADDITIONAL SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department of Commerce (DoC) proposes this amendment to the governmentwide common rules on debarment and suspension (nonprocurement) and requirements for drug-free workplace (financial assistance). The DoC will maintain uniform procedures that are consistent with those of other Executive Departments and Agencies. The DoC has reviewed its programs and determined that those identified at § 26.215 (d), (f) and (g) are excluded from coverage under the debarment and suspension regulations. The DoC has elected to add paragraph (d) in § 26.220 so that the coverage of § 26.220 (a) is extended to one additional tier of contracts. As specified in § 26.440, DoC will use a term or condition as a means to communicate requirements to participants.

End Part Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects

End List of Subjects Start Signature
Approved: June 4, 2001.

Robert F. Kugelman,

Director, Office of Executive Budgeting and Assistance Management, Department of Commerce.

End Signature

Accordingly, as set forth in the common preamble, 15 CFR subtitle A is proposed to be amended as follows:

1. Part 26 is revised to read as set forth in instruction 1 at the end of the common preamble.

Start Part

PART 26—GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

26.25
How is this part organized?
26.50
How is this part written?
26.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
26.100
What does this part do?
26.105
Does this part apply to me?
26.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
26.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
26.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
26.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
26.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
26.135
May the Department of Commerce exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
26.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
26.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
26.200
What is a covered transaction?
26.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
26.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
26.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
26.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
26.225
How do I know if a transaction that I may participate in is a covered transaction?
Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
26.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
26.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
26.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
26.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
26.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction? Start Printed Page 3303
26.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information—Primary Tier Participants
26.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the Department of Commerce?
26.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § 26.330 will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
26.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 26.330?
26.345
What must I do if I learn of the information required under § 26.330 after entering into a covered transaction with the Department of Commerce?
Disclosing information—Lower Tier Participants
26.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
26.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 26.350?
26.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 26.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of DoC Officials Regarding Transactions
26.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
26.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
26.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
26.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
26.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
26.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
26.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
26.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant?
26.440
What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?
26.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
26.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 26.330?
26.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 26.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
26.500
What is the purpose of the List?
26.505
Who uses the List?
26.510
Who maintains the List?
26.515
What specific information is on the List?
26.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
26.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
26.530
Where can I get the List?
Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
26.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
26.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
26.610
What procedures does the Department of Commerce use in suspension and debarment actions?
26.615
How does the Department of Commerce notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
26.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
26.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
26.630
May the Department of Commerce impute the conduct of one person to another?
26.635
May the Department of Commerce settle a debarment or suspension action?
26.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
26.645
Do other Federal agencies know if the Department of Commerce agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
26.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
26.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
26.710
When does a suspension take effect?
26.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
26.720
How may I contest a suspension?
26.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
26.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
26.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
26.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
26.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
26.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
26.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
26.760
How long may my suspension last?
Subpart H—Debarment
26.800
What are the causes for debarment?
26.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
26.810
When does a debarment take effect?
26.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
26.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
26.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
26.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the proposed debarment is based?
26.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
26.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
26.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
26.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
26.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
26.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
26.865
How long may my debarment last?
26.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
26.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
26.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
26.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
26.900
Adequate evidence.
26.905
Affiliate.
26.910
Agency.
26.915
Agent or representative.
26.920
Civil judgment.
26.925
Conviction.
26.930
Debarment
26.935
Debarring official.
26.940
Disqualified.
26.945
Excluded or exclusion.
26.950
Indictment.
26.955
Ineligible or ineligibility.
26.960
Legal proceedings.
26.965
List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs.
26.970
Nonprocurement transaction.
26.975
Notice.
26.980
Participant
26.985
Person.
26.990
Preponderance of the evidence.
26.995
Principal.
26.1000
Respondent.
26.1005
State.
26.1010
Suspending official.
26.1015
Suspension.
26.1020
Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded.
Subpart J [Reserved] Appendix to Part 26—Covered Transactions
Start Authority

Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301; Sec. 2455, Pub. L. 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327 (31 U.S.C. 6101 note); E.O. 12549 (3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189); E.O. 12689 (3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235).

End Authority

2. Part 26 is further amended as set forth below.

a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “Department of Commerce” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “DoC” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “Director, Office of Executive Budgeting and Assistance Management” is added in its place wherever it occurs. Start Printed Page 3304

3. Section 26.215 is amended as follows:

a. Add paragraph (d)(1) and add and reserve paragraph (d)(2).

b. Add paragraph (f)(1) and add and reserve paragraph (f)(2).

c. Add paragraph (g)(1) and add and reserve paragraph (g)(2).

The additions read as follows:

Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
* * * * *

(d) * * *

(1) Fisherman's Contingency Fund

(2) [Reserved]

* * * * *

(f) * * *

(1) For purposes of the DoC this means:

(i) Export Promotion, Trade Information and Counseling, and Trade Policy.

(ii) Geodetic Surveys and Services (Specialized Services).

(iii) Fishery Products Inspection Certification.

(iv) Standard Reference Materials.

(v) Calibration, Measurement and Testing.

(vi) Critically Evaluated Data (Standard Reference Data).

(vii) Phoenix Data System.

(viii) The sale or provision of products, information, and services to the general public.

(2) [Reserved]

(g) * * *

(1) For purposes of the DoC this means:

(i) The Administration of the Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Statutes.

(ii) The Export Trading Company Act Certificate of Review Program.

(iii) Trade Adjustment Assistance Program Certification.

(iv) Foreign Trade Zones Act of 1934, as amended.

(v) Statutory Import Program.

(2) [Reserved]

4. Section 26.220 is amended to add paragraph (d) to read as follows:

Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
* * * * *

(d) The contract is a subcontract awarded by a participant in a procurement transaction that is covered under paragraph (a) of this section, and the amount of the contract exceeds or is expected to exceed $25,000. This extends the coverage of paragraph (a) of this section to one additional tier of contracts, as shown in the diagram in the Appendix to this part.

5. Section 26.440 is added to read as follows:

What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?

To communicate the requirements to participants, you must include a term or condition in the transaction requiring the participants' compliance with Subpart C of this part and requiring them to include a similar term or condition in lower-tier covered transactions.

6. Section 26.970 is amended to add paragraphs (a)(12) through (a)(16) to read as follows:

Nonprocurement transaction.

(a) * * *

(12) Joint Project Agreements under 15 U.S.C. 1525.

(13) Cooperative research and development agreements.

(14) Joint statistical agreements.

(15) Patent licenses under 35 U.S.C. 207.

(16) NTIS joint ventures, 15 U.S.C. 3704b.

* * * * *

7. Part 29 is added to read as set forth in instruction 2 at the end of the common preamble.

End Part Start Part

PART 29—GOVERNMENTWIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE (FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE)

Subpart A—Purpose and Coverage
29.100
What does this part do?
29.105
Does this part apply to me?
29.110
Are any of my Federal assistance awards exempt from this part?
29.115
Does this part affect the Federal contracts that I receive?
Subpart B—Requirements for Recipients Other Than Individuals
29.200
What must I do to comply with this part?
29.205
What must I include in my drug-free workplace statement?
29.210
To whom must I distribute my drug-free workplace statement?
29.215
What must I include in my drug-free awareness program?
29.220
By when must I publish my drug-free workplace statement and establish my drug-free awareness program?
29.225
What actions must I take concerning employees who are convicted of drug violations in the workplace?
29.230
How and when must I identify workplaces?
Subpart C—Requirements for Recipients Who are Individuals
29.300
What must I do to comply with this part if I am an individual recipient?
29.301
[Reserved]
Subpart D—Responsibilities of DoC Awarding Officials
29.400
What are my responsibilities as a DoC awarding official?
Subpart E—Violations of This Part and Consequences
29.500
How are violations of this part determined for recipients other than individuals?
29.505
How are violations of this part determined for recipients who are individuals?
29.510
What actions will the Federal Government take against a recipient determined to have violated this part?
29.515
Are there any exceptions to those actions?
Subpart F—Definitions
29.605
Award.
29.610
Controlled substance.
29.615
Conviction.
29.620
Cooperative agreement.
29.625
Criminal drug statute.
29.630
Debarment.
29.635
Drug-free workplace.
29.640
Employee.
29.645
Federal agency or agency.
29.650
Grant.
29.655
Individual.
29.660
Recipient.
29.665
State.
29.670
Suspension.
Start Authority

Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301; 41 U.S.C. 701 et seq.

End Authority

8. Part 29 is further amended as set forth below.

a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “Department of Commerce” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “DoC” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “Director, Office of Executive Budgeting and Assistance Management is added in its place wherever it occurs.

d. “[Agency head]” is removed and “Secretary of Commerce” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

9. Section 29.510(c) is further amended by removing “[CFR citation for the Federal agency's regulations implementing Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689]” and adding “15 CFR part 26” in its place.

10. Section 29.605(a)(2) is further amended by removing “[Agency-specific CFR citation]” and adding “15 CFR part 24” in its place.

SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION

20 CFR Parts 436 and 439

RIN 0096-AE27

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Phyllis Y. Smith, Grants Management Officer, Office of Acquisition and Grants, Grants Management Team, 1710 Gwynn Oak Ave Baltimore, MD 21207, (410) 965-9518, e-mail: phyllis.y.smith@ssa.gov.

ADDITIONAL SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Prior to March 31, 1995, SSA was an Start Printed Page 3305operating component of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). As a result of Public Law 103-296, the Social Security Administration (SSA) became an independent agency on March 31, 1995. However, pursuant to section 106(b) of that law, the HHS regulations at 45 CFR part 76 dealing with nonprocurement, debarment and suspension, and the requirements for a drug-free workplace have remained applicable to SSA. In order to implement its own set of regulations on these topics, SSA proposes to adopt the common rules on nonprocurement, debarment and suspension, and requirements for a drug-free workplace with one amendment as new parts 436 and 439 in title 20 of the Code of Federal Regulations. HHS regulations at 45 CFR part 76 will cease to be applicable to SSA on the effective date of these regulations, in accordance with section 106(b) of Pub. L. 103-296. Under the proposed amendment, § 436.440 would use terms or conditions to the award transaction as a means to enforce exclusions under SSA transactions rather than written certifications. This alternative available under the common rule is more efficient than SSA's current certification process for prospective recipients and participants.

Paperwork Reduction Act

SSA will clear separately the reporting and recordkeeping requirements in proposed 20 CFR parts 436 and 439 in accordance with the requirements of 44 U.S.C. chapter 35 prior to effectuating its own rules incorporating the proposed common rule. When effective, the proposed SSA rules will not actually impose any additional reporting or recordkeeping burden on the public since SSA has been following the requirements in the HHS rules in 45 CFR part 76 that were in effect on March 31, 1995, the date SSA became an independent agency, and SSA is making no substantive changes to those requirements. However, clearance is necessary to reflect that adoption of the common rule as a final rule by SSA will transfer from HHS to SSA the authority for the reporting and recordkeeping requirements SSA has been imposing on the public under the HHS rules.

End Part Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects

End List of Subjects Start Signature

Larry G. Massanari,

Acting Commissioner of Social Security.

End Signature

For the reasons stated in the common preamble, we propose to amend chapter III of title 20 of the Code of Federal Regulations as follows:

1. Part 436 is added to read as set forth in instruction 1 at the end of the common preamble.

Start Part

PART 436—GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

436.25
How is this part organized?
436.50
How is this part written?
436.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
436.100
What does this part do?
436.105
Does this part apply to me?
436.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
436.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
436.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
436.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
436.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
436.135
May the SSA exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
436.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
436.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
436.200
What is a covered transaction?
436.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
436.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
436.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
436.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
436.225
How do I know if a transaction that I may participate in is a covered transaction?
Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
436.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
436.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
436.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
436.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
436.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?
436.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information—Primary Tier Participants
436.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the SSA?
436.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § 436.330, will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
436.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 436.330?
436.345
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 436.330 after entering into a covered transaction with the SSA?
Disclosing Information—Lower Tier Participants
436.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
436.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 436.350?
436.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 436.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of SSA Officials Regarding Transactions
436.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
436.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
436.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
436.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
436.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
436.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
436.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
436.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant? Start Printed Page 3306
436.440
What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?
436.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
436.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 436.330?
436.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 436.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
436.500
What is the purpose of the List?
436.505
Who uses the List?
436.510
Who maintains the List?
436.515
What specific information is on the List?
436.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
436.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
436.530
Where can I get the List?
Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
436.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
436.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
436.610
What procedures does the SSA use in suspension and debarment actions?
436.615
How does the SSA notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
436.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
436.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
436.630
May the SSA impute the conduct of one person to another?
436.635
May the SSA settle a debarment or suspension action?
436.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
436.645
Do other Federal agencies know if the SSA agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
436.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
436.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
436.710
When does a suspension take effect?
436.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
436.720
How may I contest a suspension?
436.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
436.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
436.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
436.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
436.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
436.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
436.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
436.760
How long may my suspension last?
Subpart H—Debarment
436.800
What are the causes for debarment?
436.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
436.810
When does a debarment take effect?
436.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
436.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
436.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
436.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the proposed debarment is based?
436.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
436.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
436.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
436.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
436.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
436.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
436.865
How long may my debarment last?
436.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
436.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
436.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
436.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
436.900
Adequate evidence.
436.905
Affiliate.
436.910
Agency.
436.915
Agent or representative.
436.920
Civil judgment.
436.925
Conviction.
436.930
Debarment.
436.935
Debarring official.
436.940
Disqualified.
436.945
Excluded or exclusion.
436.950
Indictment.
436.955
Ineligible or ineligibility.
436.960
Legal proceedings.
436.965
List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified from Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs.
436.970
Nonprocurement transaction.
436.975
Notice.
436.980
Participant.
436.985
Person.
436.990
Preponderance of the evidence.
436.995
Principal.
436.1000
Respondent.
436.1005
State.
436.1010
Suspending official.
436.1015
Suspension.
436.1020
Voluntary exclusion or voluntarily excluded
Subpart J [Reserved]

Appendix to Part 436—Covered Transactions

Start Authority

Authority: 42 U.S.C. 902(a)(5); Sec. 2455, Pub. L. 103-355, 108 Stat. 3327; E.O. 12549 (3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189); E.O. 12689 (3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235).

End Authority

2. Part 436 is further amended as follows:

a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “SSA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “SSA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “SSA Debarring/Suspension Official” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

3. Section 436.440 is added to read as follows:

What method do I use to communicate those requirements to participants?

To communicate the requirements to participants, you must include a term or condition in the transaction requiring the participant's compliance with subpart C of this part and requiring them to include a similar term or condition in lower tier covered transactions.

4. Part 439 is added to read as set forth in instruction 2 at the end of the common preamble.

End Part Start Part

PART 439—GOVERNMENTWIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE (FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE)

Subpart A—Purpose and Coverage
439.100
What does this part do?
439.105
Does this part apply to me?
439.110
Are any of my Federal assistance awards exempt from this part?
439.115
Does this part affect the Federal contracts that I receive?
Subpart B—Requirements for Recipients Other Than Individuals
439.200
What must I do to comply with this part?
439.205
What must I include in my drug-free workplace statement?
439.210
To whom must I distribute my drug-free workplace statement?
439.215
What must I include in my drug-free awareness program?
439.220
By when must I publish my drug-free workplace statement and establish my drug-free awareness program?
439.225
What actions must I take concerning employees who are convicted of drug violations in the workplace?
439.230
How and when must I identify workplaces?
Start Printed Page 3307 Subpart C—Requirements for Recipients who are Individuals
439.300
What must I do to comply with this part if I am an individual recipient?
439.301
[Reserved]
Subpart D—Responsibilities of SSA Awarding Officials
439.400
What are my responsibilities as an SSA awarding official?
Subpart E—Violations of This Part and Consequences
439.500
How are violations of this part determined for recipients other than individuals?
439.505
How are violations of this part determined for recipients who are individuals?
439.510
What actions will the Federal Government take against a recipient determined to have violated this part?
439.515
Are there any exceptions to those actions?
Subpart F—Definitions
439.605
Award.
439.610
Controlled substance.
439.615
Conviction.
439.620
Cooperative agreement.
439.625
Criminal drug statute.
439.630
Debarment.
439.635
Drug-free workplace.
439.640
Employee.
439.645
Federal agency or agency.
439.650
Grant.
439.655
Individual.
439.660
Recipient.
439.665
State.
439.670
Suspension.
Start Authority

Authority: 41 U.S.C. 701 et seq; 42 U.S.C. 902(a)(5).

End Authority

5. Part 439 is further amended as follows:

a. “[Agency noun]” is removed and “the SSA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

b. “[Agency adjective]” is removed and “SSA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

c. “[Agency head or designee]” is removed and “SSA Official or designee” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

d. “[Agency head]” is removed and “the Commissioner of SSA” is added in its place wherever it occurs.

6. Section 439.510(c) is further amended by removing “[CFR citation for the Federal Agency's regulations implementing Executive Order 12549 and Executive Order 12689]”and adding “20 CFR part 436” in its place.

7. Section 439.605(a)(2) is further amended by removing “[Agency-specific CFR citation]”and adding “45 CFR part 92” in its place.

OFFICE OF NATIONAL DRUG CONTROL POLICY

21 CFR Parts 1404 and 1405

RIN 3201-ZA02

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: ONDCP, Attn: Daniel R. Petersen, Washington, DC 20503, (202) 395-6745, Daniel_R._Petersen@ondcp.eop.gov.

End Part Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects

End List of Subjects Start Signature

Edward H. Jurith,

Acting Director.

End Signature

Accordingly, as set forth in the common preamble, 21 CFR chapter III is proposed to be amended as follows.

1. Part 1404 is revised to read as set forth in instruction 1 at the end of the common preamble.

Start Part

PART 1404—GOVERNMENTWIDE DEBARMENT AND SUSPENSION (NONPROCUREMENT)

1404.25
How is this part organized?
1404.50
How is this part written?
1404.75
Do terms in this part have special meanings?
Subpart A—General
1404.100
What does this part do?
1404.105
Does this part apply to me?
1404.110
What is the purpose of the nonprocurement debarment and suspension system?
1404.115
How does an exclusion restrict a person's involvement in covered transactions?
1404.120
May we grant an exception to let an excluded person participate in a covered transaction?
1404.125
Does an exclusion under the nonprocurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in Federal procurement contracts?
1404.130
Does an exclusion under the Federal procurement system affect a person's eligibility to participate in nonprocurement transactions?
1404.135
May the Office of National Drug Control Policy exclude a person who is not currently participating in a nonprocurement transaction?
1404.140
How do I know if a person is excluded?
1404.145
Does this part cover persons who are disqualified as well as those who are excluded from nonprocurement transactions?
Subpart B—Covered Transactions
1404.200
What is a covered transaction?
1404.205
Why is it important to know if a particular transaction is a covered transaction?
1404.210
Which nonprocurement transactions are covered transactions?
1404.215
Which nonprocurement transactions are not covered transactions?
1404.220
Are any procurement contracts included as covered transactions?
1404.225
How do I know if a transaction that I may participate in is a covered transaction?
Subpart C—Responsibilities of Participants Regarding Transactions Doing Business With Other Persons
1404.300
May I enter into a covered transaction with an excluded or disqualified person?
1404.305
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes a person with whom I am already doing business in a covered transaction?
1404.310
May I use the services of an excluded person under a covered transaction?
1404.315
Must I verify that principals of my covered transactions are eligible to participate?
1404.320
What happens if I do business with an excluded person in a covered transaction?
1404.325
What requirements must I pass down to persons at lower tiers with whom I intend to do business?
Disclosing Information—Primary Tier Participants
1404.330
What information must I provide before entering into a covered transaction with the Office of National Drug Control Policy.
1404.335
If I disclose unfavorable information required under § 1404.330 will I be prevented from entering into the transaction?
1404.340
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 1404.330?
1404.345
What must I do if I learn of the information required under § 1404.330 after entering into a covered transaction with the Office of National Drug Control Policy?
Disclosing Information—Lower Tier Participants
1404.350
What information must I provide to a higher tier participant before entering into a covered transaction with that participant?
1404.355
What happens if I fail to disclose the information required under § 1404.350?
1404.360
What must I do if I learn of information required under § 1404.350 after entering into a covered transaction with a higher tier participant?
Subpart D—Responsibilities of Office of National Drug Control Policy Officials Regarding Transactions
1404.400
May I enter into a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person? Start Printed Page 3308
1404.405
May I enter into a covered transaction with a participant if a principal of the transaction is excluded?
1404.410
May I approve a participant's use of the services of an excluded person?
1404.415
What must I do if a Federal agency excludes the participant or a principal after I enter into a covered transaction?
1404.420
May I approve a transaction with an excluded or disqualified person at a lower tier?
1404.425
When do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
1404.430
How do I check to see if a person is excluded or disqualified?
1404.435
What must I require of a primary tier participant?
1404.440
What method do I use to communicate to participants the requirements in § 1404.435?
1404.445
What action may I take if a primary tier participant knowingly does business with an excluded or disqualified person?
1404.450
What action may I take if a primary tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 1404.330?
1404.455
What may I do if a lower tier participant fails to disclose the information required under § 1404.350 to the next higher tier?
Subpart E—Governmentwide List of Parties Excluded or Disqualified From Federal Procurement and Nonprocurement Programs
1404.500
What is the purpose of the List?
1404.505
Who uses the List?
1404.510
Who maintains the List?
1404.515
What specific information is on the List?
1404.520
Who gives the GSA the information that it puts on the List?
1404.525
Whom do I ask if I have questions about a person on the List?
1404.530
Where can I get the List?
Subpart F—General Principles Relating to Suspension and Debarment Actions
1404.600
How do suspension and debarment actions start?
1404.605
How does suspension differ from debarment?
1404.610
What procedures does the Office of National Drug Control Policy use in suspension and debarment actions?
1404.615
How does the Office of National Drug Control Policy notify a person of suspension and debarment actions?
1404.620
Do Federal agencies coordinate suspension and debarment actions?
1404.625
What is the scope of a suspension or debarment action?
1404.630
May the Office of National Drug Control Policy impute the conduct of one person to another?
1404.635
May the Office of National Drug Control Policy settle a debarment or suspension action?
1404.640
May a settlement include a voluntary exclusion?
1404.645
Do other Federal agencies know if the Office of National Drug Control Policy agrees to a voluntary exclusion?
Subpart G—Suspension
1404.700
When may the suspending official issue a suspension?
1404.705
What does the suspending official consider in issuing a suspension?
1404.710
When does a suspension take effect?
1404.715
What notice does the suspending official give me if I am suspended?
1404.720
How may I contest a suspension?
1404.725
How much time do I have to contest a suspension?
1404.730
What information must I provide to the suspending official if I contest a suspension?
1404.735
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the suspension is based?
1404.740
Are suspension proceedings formal?
1404.745
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
1404.750
What does the suspending official consider in deciding whether to continue or terminate my suspension?
1404.755
When will I know whether the suspension is continued or terminated?
1404.760
How long may my suspension last?
Subpart H—Debarment
1404.800
What are the causes for debarment?
1404.805
What notice does the debarring official give me if I am proposed for debarment?
1404.810
When does a debarment take effect?
1404.815
How may I contest a proposed debarment?
1404.820
How much time do I have to contest a proposed debarment?
1404.825
What information must I provide to the debarring official if I contest a proposed debarment?
1404.830
Under what conditions do I get an additional opportunity to challenge the facts on which the proposed debarment is based?
1404.835
Are debarment proceedings formal?
1404.840
Is a record made of fact-finding proceedings?
1404.845
What does the debarring official consider in deciding whether to debar me?
1404.850
What is the standard of proof in a debarment action?
1404.855
Who has the burden of proof in a debarment action?
1404.860
What factors may influence the debarring official's decision?
1404.865
How long may my debarment last?
1404.870
When do I know if the debarring official debars me?
1404.875
May I ask the debarring official to reconsider a decision to debar me?
1404.880
What factors may influence the debarring official during reconsideration?
1404.885
May the debarring official extend a debarment?
Subpart I—Definitions
1404.900
Adequate evidence.
1404.905
Affiliate.
1404.910
Agency.