NITAAC to release CIO-SP4 contract to include large and small contractors

In the next few weeks, in mid-to-late March, the National Institutes of Health IT Acquisition and Assessment Center (NITAAC) will announce the $40 billion CIO-SP4 contract and award spots to as many as 450 large and small contractors by early 2022. Brian Goodger, CIO-SP4 program manager and NITAAC acting director, said he expects to receive more than 1,000 bids, due on 30 April.

Knowing the success of the GWAC and protests could easily postpone its adoption, Goodger said NITAAC plans to overcome any potential concerns as early as possible in the assessment process.

NITAAC will also look at the past performance of bidders during phase 3 and the pricing of labor categories and any other significant documents.

“Because of that phased approach, again, we expect to be able to narrow down the competition so much that there won’t be too many protests at the end. So many companies would have already been eliminated and would have been notified six, nine months prior. We were really optimistic about the phased approach, and specifically about that self-scoring sheet because we’ve had a couple of meetings with industry where a couple of companies have recognized that knowing that their score at an early stage might not be good enough to really compete would be good.” (Miller).

Goodger said NITAAC agreed in several industry days and other meetings on the page limits for the technical proposal and business proposal after hearing from the industry over the last year that the criteria for longer proposals were too burdensome.

Goodger said he expects the bulk of protest delays to occur in phases one or two, with a much smaller chance of phase three protests.

“Another reason we’ve moved to the phased approach is that although the offerors will submit everything in total upfront. The phased approach allows NITAAC the opportunity to notify them immediately after the conclusion of each phase of whether or not they’ve advanced to the next phase. And in doing so, we will be able to start any protest clock immediately with those that did not make it from phase one to phase two. Likely some of them will protest, but we will work with those protests commensurate with our evaluation in phase two. The evaluation will continue as any protests come in.” (Miller).

Author: Emely Rivas

Source: Miller, Jason. “NITAAC details timing, evaluation plans for $40B IT services contract.” Federal News Network, 22 February 2021, Accessed 24 February 2021.

GSA’s procurement programs plan to create opportunities

The General Services Administration (GSA) is the central procurement arm of the federal government. With the change in administration, the GSA plays an integral role in implementing policy priorities. The new administration has set its sights on helping small businesses, establishing green energy alternatives, and increasing domestic sourcing. GSA’s procurement programs, managed by the Federal Acquisition Service (FAS), plays a critical role in supporting customer agencies, accounting for $75 Billion in annual mission support.

FAS’ procurement programs include the Multiple Award Schedule program (MAS), Assisted Acquisition Services, IT GWACs, OASIS, and Global Supplies and Services (GSS). These programs are complementary, bringing a full solution offering approach to GSA’s customer agencies.

Consistency in application and implementation are key elements of the FAS procurement strategy. With respect to the new Administration’s priorities, FAS procurement under these vehicles will support the Buy American Act (BAA), Free Trade Agreements (FTA), and the Trade Agreements Act (TAA).

To create more opportunities, GSA is rolling out a commercial e-commerce pilot program for domestic and foreign sourcing. Awarded in June 2020, the e-commerce pilot program targets $6 Billion, GSA’s estimated addressable market, in open market purchase card spending by the federal government. The pilot program seeks to channel orders through three e-commerce platforms.

Author: Paul McVeigh


GSA MAS Consolidation

Consolidation of the Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) is all about breaking down hurdles, removing stovepipes, and streamlining procurement processes. For this reason, for this major contracting initiative to add quality to government contracting, the General Services Administration (GSA) is to be commended.

MAS consolidation is the cornerstone of GSA’s Federal Marketplace Strategy as the largest commercial commodity deal, responsible for over $30 billion in annual transactions by the federal government.

To date, the focus of the MAS consolidation has been on resolving procurement procedures, demands for MAS, and subsequent contracts. The Federal Procurement Service analyzed and rationalized hundreds of MAS in Phase 1.

Consolidating the MAS solicitation and contracts would expand access to best value goods, facilities, and solutions for consumer agencies. GSA has acknowledged that FAS’s IT systems need to be modernized in order to efficiently interact and fully exploit the benefits of MAS consolidation.

Another wonderful potential for enhancing FAS management and operations is given by MAS consolidation. It sets the stage for a top-down FAS analysis to reduce duplication and remove unnecessary stovepipes for organizations. The Federal Marketplace Policy of GSA has the golden chance of updating, reinventing and reforming FAS.

Writer: Mariatu Alale


The Pandemic Caused Substantial Delays in FOIA Requests

            More than 80 percent of organizations that receive 10,000 or more requests a year have placed a note about FOIA delays on their websites. This is according to a new analysis by the National Archives and Records Administration, part of the Office of Government Information Services. Last May, the Information Policy Office of the Justice Department released guidelines urging agencies to keep requesters informed on status updates. A lengthy to-do list for federal agencies is included in the latest climate executive order by President Biden.

The Executive Regulations in Need of Oversight or REINS Act will require Congress, before they come into force, to pass a joint resolution authorizing major agency rules.

The bill describes a major rule as any regulation that has an effect of at least $100 million, which will lead to a substantial rise in the agency or public costs.

Industry demand for its new cloud office convinced the Defense Information Systems Agency to extend its quest for program support services. As a separate military service, the Space Force moved to distinguish itself, announcing new names for its enlisted labor force.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has overhauled its Freedom of Information Act Requests framework for obtaining and processing.

Starting today, a brand-new software suite for ingesting both FOIA requests and appeals was launched by the commission. The most recent edition, known as System 2021, is a replacement for a system that has been around since 2015. The Commission notes that applicants can continue to use the old system to check the status of earlier requests, but only until March 12.

FOIA requests will also be accepted by the commission via postal mail, email, and fax.

Author: Emely Rivas

Source :White, E. (2021, February 01). Pandemic Pandemic has caused major delays in FOIA requests. Federal News Network.