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Rule

Federal Acquisition Regulation; Elimination of Certain Subcontract Notification Requirements

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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AGENCIES:

Department of Defense (DoD), General Services Administration (GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Civilian Agency Acquisition Council and the Defense Acquisition Regulations Council (Councils) have agreed on a final rule amending the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to modify the language regarding advance notification requirements. This change is required to implement Section 842 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004, Public Law 108-136, which resulted in revisions to 10 U.S.C. 2306(e).

DATES:

Effective Date: January 3, 2006.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For clarification of content, contact Ms. Rhonda Cundiff, Procurement Analyst, at (202) 501-0044. Please cite FAC 2005-07, FAR case 2003-024. For information pertaining to status or publication schedules, contact the FAR Secretariat at (202) 501-4755.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

A. Background

DoD, GSA, and NASA published an interim rule in the Federal Register at 70 FR 11761, March 9, 2005, with a request for comments by May 9, 2005. The interim rule revised FAR 44.201-2, Advance notification requirements, and amended Alternate I of FAR clause 52.244-2, Subcontracts. The change is required in order to implement Section 842 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004, Start Printed Page 226Public Law 108-136. Section 842 removes the requirement for contractors under cost-reimbursement contracts with the Department of Defense (DoD), Coast Guard, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to notify the agency before the award of any cost-plus-fixed-fee subcontract or any fixed-price subcontract that exceeds the greater of the simplified acquisition threshold or 5 percent of the total estimated cost of the contract if the contractor maintains a purchasing system approved by the contracting officer for the contract.

The final rule differs from the interim rule in that it deletes Alternate I in its entirety. The Councils adopted the suggestion in a public comment that deletion of Alternate I would be a less confusing means of implementing the statute than amending Alternate I. Renumbering has occurred in FAR 44.204 and 52.244-2 as a result of the deletion of Alternate I.

In addition, the interim rule made a technical amendment to Alternate II of the FAR clause at 52.244-2, Subcontracts. The interim rule deleted the reference to paragraph (c) from paragraph (f)(2) of Alternate II (now renumbered Alternate I in the final rule) because paragraph (c) applies to fixed-price type contracts, whereas Alternate II (now renumbered Alternate I in the final rule) applies to cost-reimbursement contracts.

Two comments were received from one respondent.

Comment: The respondent noted that the purpose of the FAR change is, in the case of DoD, the Coast Guard, and NASA, to eliminate the requirement for the contractor to notify the agency before award of certain subcontracts when the contractor has an approved purchasing system. The respondent stated that the language in the interim rule is confusing and suggested eliminating Alternate I of 52.244-2 instead.

Response: Concur. The final rule deletes Alternate I.

Comment: The respondent suggested rewriting Alternate II of the FAR clause at 52.244-2 and FAR 44.201-2 to have the language match what is in 52.244-2(d)(1).

Response: Nonconcur. Paragraph (d)(1) of the FAR clause at 52.244-2 specifies the contract types—cost-reimbursement, time-and-materials, and labor-hour—subject to subcontract consent requirements. Alternate II specifies the contract types—cost-plus-fixed-fee and fixed-price—subject to advance notification requirements even when subcontract consent is not required. These two procedures are separate statutory requirements and apply to different contract types.

This is not a significant regulatory action and, therefore, was not subject to review under Section 6(b) of Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, dated September 30, 1993. This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804.

B. Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Department of Defense, the General Services Administration, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration certify that this final rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities within the meaning of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601, et seq., because it will have a small positive effect. Small businesses do not usually hold prime contracts which are cost-reimbursement contracts, so this section would not apply to them, and any change would not apply.

C. Paperwork Reduction Act

The Paperwork Reduction Act does not apply because the changes to the FAR do not impose information collection requirements that require the approval of the Office of Management and Budget under 44 U.S.C. 3501, et seq.

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List of Subjects in 48 CFR Parts 44 and 52

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Dated: December 22, 2005.

Gerald Zaffos,

Director, Contract Policy Division.

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Therefore, DoD, GSA, and NASA amend

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1. The authority citation for

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Authority: 40 U.S.C. 121(c); 10 U.S.C. chapter 137; and 42 U.S.C. 2473(c).

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PART 44—SUBCONTRACTING POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

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2. Amend section 44.204 by revising paragraph (a)(2) to read as follows:

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Contract clauses.

(a)(1) * * *

(2) If a cost-reimbursement contract is contemplated, for civilian agencies other than the Coast Guard and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the contracting officer shall use the clause with its Alternate I.

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PART 52—SOLICITATION PROVISIONS AND CONTRACT CLAUSES

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3. Amend section 52.244-2 by—

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a. Removing Alternate I; and

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b. Redesignating Alternate II as Alternate I; and revising the introductory paragraph to read as follows:

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Subcontracts.
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Alternate I (JAN 2006). As prescribed in 44.204(a)(2), substitute the following paragraph (f)(2) for paragraph (f)(2) of the basic clause:

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[FR Doc. 05-24554 Filed 12-30-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6820-EP-S