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  • Enter all applicable information when entering the bid into the abstract.\n
  • Otherwise extending the duration of the contract includes extensions for any reason; whether contractor or government caused.\n
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  • Sometimes there is conflict between Agency and DoJ priorities/goals when considering appropriate remedies while continuing to administer the contract.\n
  • 9.405 -- Effect of Listing (d) \nAfter the opening of bids or receipt of proposals, the contracting officer shall review the EPLS.\nBids received from any listed contractor in response to an invitation for bids shall be entered on the abstract of bids, and rejected unless the agency head or a designee determines in writing that there is a compelling reason to consider the bid.\nProposals, quotations, or offers received from any listed contractor shall not be evaluated for award or included in the competitive range, nor shall discussions be conducted with a listed offeror during a period of ineligibility, unless the agency head or a designee determines, in writing, that there is a compelling reason to do so. If the period of ineligibility expires or is terminated prior to award, the contracting officer may, but is not required to, consider such proposals, quotations, or offers.\nImmediately prior to award, the contracting officer shall again review the EPLS to ensure that no award is made to a listed contractor.\n
  • This check is inferred (implied) by FAR FAR 9.402(a): "Agencies shall solicit offers from, award contracts to, and consent to subcontracts with responsible contractors only. Debarment and suspension are discretionary actions that, taken in accordance with this subpart, are appropriate means to effectuate this policy."\n \nThis check is recommended to prevent soliciting offers from a debarred or suspended contractor and would be required in sole source acquisitions, RFPs for delivery/task orders and competitive acquisitions where a source list has been developed through pre-RFP activities (i.e. sources sought synopsis).\n\nIt is a little more complex to determine if this third check is required for competitive acquisitions, however I make this determination by checking FBO for any registered interested parties and asking myself if anyone on the acquisition team will send a "heads up" communication to any contractor to inform them the RFP has been officially released. If either of these questions is answered yes, then an EPLS check may be accomplished.\n
  • EPLS is a “live” system, this means that any addition, deletion or change to the listing will be immediately available to the search query. \n\nWhile, “immediately prior to award” is a phrase left to the interpretation of the CO, the above example illustrates that even as little as six hours may not be considered “immediately prior to award”.\n
  • 9.405-1 -- Continuation of Current Contracts.\n(a) Notwithstanding the debarment, suspension, or proposed debarment of a contractor, agencies may continue contracts or subcontracts in existence at the time the contractor was debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment unless the agency head directs otherwise. A decision as to the type of termination action, if any, to be taken should be made only after review by agency contracting and technical personnel and by counsel to ensure the propriety of the proposed action.\n(b) For contractors debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment, unless the agency head makes a written determination of the compelling reasons for doing so, ordering activities shall not—\n (1) Place orders exceeding the guaranteed minimum under indefinite quantity contracts; \n (2) Place orders under optional use Federal Supply Schedule contracts, blanket purchase agreements, or basic ordering agreements; or\n (3) Add new work, exercise options, or otherwise extend the duration of current contracts or orders.\n
  • If a contractor intends to subcontract with a party that is debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment as evidenced by the parties’ inclusion in the EPLS (see 9.404), a corporate officer or designee of the contractor is required by operation of the clause at 52.209-6, Protecting the Government’s Interests when Subcontracting with Contractors Debarred, Suspended, or Proposed for Debarment, to notify the contracting officer, in writing, before entering into such subcontract." The clause is required in all solicitations/contracts expected to exceed $30K. \nThe contractor is responsible for the award of subcontracts. Clause 52.209-6 conveys this requirement. FAR 9.405-2(c) states “The contractor’s compliance with the requirements of 52.209-6 will be reviewed during Contractor Purchasing System Reviews”. Additional documentation in the prime contract file should not be necessary.\n
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  • Now back to basics – a few warnings related to how to search on EPLS. \n\nOnce a user selects EPLS Advanced Search this information pop-up box will appear. This information box contains warnings regarding the data results the system expects return based on the type of search. \n\nIf the checkbox is selected, EPLS will allow you to search using Exact Name, DUNS or CAGE Code without further warnings. \n
  • If the checkbox is not marked on the information pop-up screen then the system automatically disables the search fields likely to return false negative results. \n\nIf the user chooses to acknowledge the warning and continue the search using these fields, the following screens provide additional information.\n
  • There is no requirement in EPLS for the name to be entered into the EPLS system as the legal business name found in CCR. \n There is no control on spelling or punctuation in EPLS.\n\nExact Name – Caution: The Exact Name search will only return a match result when the name you entered in the exact name field is an exact match to a record in the EPLS. Case does not matter, but format and punctuation does.\n
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  • More than one advanced search criterion may be selected, but they do not all need to be selected to perform a search. In fact, many searches will not return any results if more than two criteria are selected, as each one will reduce the number of returned search results.\n\nSearches using multiple search criterion must meet all criteria selected not just any of the criteria selected. \n
  • From UCI checklist:\n\n2.2.2.1\nDid the Contracting Officer ensure he/she did not award contracts to, or consent to subcontracts with, contractors on the List of Parties Excluded from Federal Procurement and Non-procurement programs?\n
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  • Epls slides

    1. 1. Overview• Purpose & Effect• FAR Requirements• EPLS Checks• EPLS Documentation• Search Warnings• Recent UCI Findings• FAPIIS• Summary
    2. 2. Purpose & Effect• EPLS purpose – protects government• Government-wide effect – https://www.epls.gov – Contractors debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment are excluded from receiving contracts – Agencies shall not • Solicit offers from • Award contracts to • Consent to subcontracts with these contractors – Agency head may determine there is a compelling reason for such action
    3. 3. FAR Requirements• FAR 9.402 Suspension & Debarment Policy – Agencies shall solicit offers from, award contracts to, and consent to subcontracts with responsible contractors only – Debarment and suspension are discretionary actions that are an appropriate means to effectuate this policy – The serious nature of debarment and suspension requires that these sanctions be imposed only in the public interest for the Government’s protection and not for purposes of punishment
    4. 4. FAR Requirements (cont)• FAR 9.405 EPLS, Effect of Listing – Contractors debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment are excluded from receiving contracts, and agencies shall not solicit offers from, award contracts to, or consent to subcontracts with these contractors, unless the agency head determines that there is a compelling reason for such action – Contractors debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment are also excluded from conducting business with the government as agents or representatives of other contractors
    5. 5. FAR Requirements (cont)• FAR 9.405(d) Contracting Officers Shall – – After the opening of bids or receipt of proposals, the CO shall review the EPLS • Bids shall be entered on the abstract, then rejected • Proposals, quotations, or offers shall not be evaluated – no discussions – Immediately prior to award, the CO shall again review the EPLS
    6. 6. FAR Requirements (cont)• FAR 9.405 Effects of Listing on Contract Award – Contracting Activities Shall Not – • Award new contracts • Place orders exceeding the guaranteed minimum under IDIQ contracts • Place orders under optional use FSS contracts, BPAs, or BOAs • Add new work, exercise options, or otherwise extend the duration of current contracts or orders
    7. 7. FAR Requirements (cont)• Effect of Listing – Compelling Reason to Continue – Written Determination: When an agency determines that a compelling reason exists for it to continue business with a contractor that is debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment, it must provide written notice of the determination to the GSA, Office of Procurement Policy. 10 U.S.C. 2392(b); DFARS 209.405 • Examples: (i) only one source for service/supply; (ii) urgency; (iii) agency agreement; (iv) national defense requires continued dealings – Request must address (i) efforts to develop alternate sources and (ii) impact. AFFARS 5309.405
    8. 8. FAR Requirements (cont)• Continuation of Current Contracts – Notwithstanding the debarment, suspension, or proposed debarment of a contractor, agencies may continue contracts or subcontracts in existence at the time the contractor was debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment unless the agency head directs otherwise. FAR 9.405-1 – Termination of existing contracts requires T4D, T4C, or cancellation – Continue to administer the contract • Consider appropriate contractual remedies (including past performance)
    9. 9. Two Checks Required• FAR 9.405(d)• Upon receipt of proposal(s) – Could be accomplished in one check if award is made immediately• Immediately prior to award – Upon finalization of file & signature by CO – Will address “immediately” later in the training Checks required for Competitive and Sole Source
    10. 10. Recommended EPLS Check• Prior to release of solicitation – If not performed (and documented) as part of source list development, CO could accomplish & document prior to release – Equally applicable in sole source and competitive situations
    11. 11. What is . . .• Immediately prior to award? – Within 24 hours of contracting officer signature – The closer to signature the better!!!• Why is this important? – 1100 – Buyer completes file by running EPLS check and placing it in the file; provides file to CO for signature – 1400 – Agency inputs contractor suspension into EPLS – 1700 – CO signs action based upon earlier EPLS check; awards to debarred/ suspended contractor 11
    12. 12. Actions Requiring EPLS Check• FAR 9.405-1 provides overarching guidance• Check for new contracts, orders, UCAs, definitization of UCAs, etc.• Modifications: Check for actions that add new work in the broad sense – Includes “changes” clause work, exercise an option, or extend duration of contract or order• May not be required for admin mods or incremental funding IF work required and performance/delivery period unchanged 12
    13. 13. Actions Requiring EPLS Check (cont)• Check EPLS before consenting to subcontracts• Ktrs shall not enter into subcontract > $30K w/company that has been debarred, suspended, or proposed for debarment – Compliance checked during Contractor Purchasing System Reviews – Additional documentation in prime contract file should not be necessary 13
    14. 14. Actions Requiring EPLS Check (cont)• Gov’t extending the period of performance – Must check EPLS – Doesn’t matter why period of performance extended• Orders under a requirements contract – EPLS checked at initial award – Subsequent checks not required – Contract requirement is for all of the government’s requirements for a period of time
    15. 15. EPLS Documentation• What is acceptable documentation of EPLS review? – Screen prints from EPLS are acceptable – Should include all of the query results • If results are voluminous, refine your search – “Conservative (thorough) CO” may also include a brief memo – Signature on screen prints not required 15
    16. 16. Search Warnings• Exact Name• CAGE Code/DUNS Number• Multiple field advanced search 16
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    18. 18. 18
    19. 19. Exact Name Warning• Partial Name search recommended• Exact Name search NOT recommended – Will return results only if query is identical to name of record in EPLS – Including any punctuation, prefixes, or suffixes APM ≠ APM, LLC APM LLC ≠ APM, LLC John Doe Jr ≠ John Doe, Jr. 19
    20. 20. CAGE/DUNS Warning• Search by CAGE Code or DUNS may not be sufficient – EPLS does not have CAGE Code or DUNS identifiers for all firms• Partial Name search also should be performed if no results are obtained from a DUNS or CAGE search – Partial name must be spelled correctly 20
    21. 21. Advanced Search Warning• More than one advanced search criterion may be selected• Not all need to be selected to perform search• Many searches will not return any results if more than two criteria are selected – Each criterion will reduce the number of returned search results 21
    22. 22. Recent UCI Findings• Lack of one or both EPLS checks• Not checking EPLS for Delivery Orders/Task Orders• Lack of documentation
    23. 23. Effect of FAPIIS• Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)• NDAA, Section 872 requires development of a ‘database’ on potential awardees for data to support award decisions• Decision made to leverage the capabilities of CPARS, CCR, and PPIRS to satisfy the 872 requirements
    24. 24. Effect of FAPIIS (cont)• FAPIIS – Sources of Information – EPLS – Past Performance Information Retrieval System (PPIRS) and Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS) – COs will provide information on non-responsibility determinations and T4Ds – Suspension/Debarment Official will provide summaries of Administrative Agreements – Contractors (>$10M contracts/grants) required to provide information relating to criminal, civil, and administrative proceedings
    25. 25. Phases• Initial Operational Capability (IOC) Deployed March 22, 2010 – FAPIIS input module of CPARS – ability to collect all of the contracting / grants officer required postings (e.g., T4D, Non-Responsibility Determinations) – CCR – collect the criminal / civil / administrative proceeding information – FAPIIS search module of PPIRS – ability to access above items, PPIRS, and EPLS
    26. 26. Phases (cont)• Subsequent Phases – Required – Ability to collect administrative agreement information from suspension / debarment officials (pending requirements definition for identification of individuals) – planned for Fall 2010 release – OFPP considering lowering the threshold at which vendors have to provide criminal/civil/administrative proceeding information to the simplified acquisition threshold – OFPP considering expanding the criminal/civil/ administrative proceeding information to cover state contracts/grants in addition to federal contracts/grants
    27. 27. Regulation Changes• FAR Case 2008-027 final rule, effective April 22, 2010, was published March 23, 2010 – Established the FAPIIS database – Contracting officers report non-responsibility determinations to FAPIIS – Contracting officers place new provision/clause 52.209-7/8 (Information Regarding Responsibility Matters) in new contracts above $500K – Vendors report data regarding criminal/civil/ administrative proceedings to CCR that will be shared with FAPIIS – Contracting officers must review FAPIIS for any new contract award above the simplified acquisition threshold as part of his/her responsibility determination (FAR 9.104-6)
    28. 28. Regulation Changes (cont)• FAR Case 2008-016 is anticipated for final rule in Q3FY10 and expands the data in FAPIIS by requiring contracting officers report: – Terminations for Default (partial or complete) – Terminations for Cause (partial or complete) – Defective Pricing determinations• OMB has also issued proposed guidance (February 18, 2010) to amend CFR Title 2 to require grants officers report: – Terminations for Material Failure to Comply – Recipient Not Qualified determinations
    29. 29. FAPIIS Bottom Line• Ultimately checking FAPIIS will fulfill the requirement to check EPLS• Robustness not there yet• Continue to check EPLS
    30. 30. Summary• Check EPLS twice!• Document the file! – Partial Name search is preferred method – Goal is NOT to obtain a results page without any listing – Goal is to conduct broad enough search to capture contractor if they are listed on EPLS – Additional search tips can be found in the EPLS User Manual – https://www.epls.gov/EPLS%20Public%20Users %20Manual.pdf 30
    31. 31. Overview• NDAA, Section 872 requires development of a ‘database’ on potential awardees for data to support award decisions – Government contracting / grants officials report • Terminations for Default (contracts) • Terminations for Cause (commercial contracts) • Terminations for Material Failure to Comply (grants) • Defective Pricing determinations (contracts) • Non-responsibility determinations (contracts) • Recipient Not-Qualified determinations (grants) – Government suspension / debarment officials report • Administrative Agreements (in lieu of actual debarment / suspension, action does not prohibit other awards) – Vendor has the opportunity to provide comments on posted items – Collect information about criminal / civil / and administrative proceedings on vendors for which there has been a finding of fault – Information available for 5 years from the date of action 37
    32. 32. Data Elements• Data elements to enable searches and reports (required unless otherwise identified): – Record Type (T4D, Non-responsibility, Admin Agreement, etc.) * – Date of record/action (when the T4D was signed) * – Date / Time Stamp of Posting (New Module will generate) * – DUNS number * – CAGE code (Optional) – Vendor name and address (could pull from CCR or D&B based on DUNS) * – Doing Business As (DBA) (Optional) – Product Service Code (Mandatory for Contracts only) – NAICS (Mandatory for Contracts only) – Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) (Mandatory for grants actions) – Solicitation / Funding Opportunity (announcement) number (Mandatory for non- responsibility, not-qualified determinations; Optional otherwise) – Contract or Grant Award ID Number (Mandatory for terminations; Optional otherwise) – Contract or Grant Referenced Award ID Number (Optional) – e.g. GWAC, FSS, IDV, etc. – Government reporting agency and office codes * – Government reporting official name *, address *, phone *, email * * Mandatory Field
    33. 33. Data Elements (cont)• Ability to upload actual record as a .PDF along with above data (5MB size limit)*• Government reporting of suspensions and debarments follow same procedures as today• Government reporting of performance assessment reports follow same procedures as today * Mandatory Field
    34. 34. Getting Set Up• If you are already using CPARS and PPIRS, accessing the FAPIIS modules is simply another ‘role’ that the focal points can authorize for users• If you are not already using CPARS and PPIRS, a representative from the Senior Procurement Executives staff should contact the CPARS Program Management Office (PMO) to discuss approaches for establishing focal points – PMO will assist each agency with this process. An access request form must be submitted for each focal point.• Online training is available to assist new users• A FAPIIS User Manual is available for new users
    35. 35. FAPIIS• In spring 2009, determination is made by the ACE to leverage the capabilities of CPARS, CCR, and PPIRS to satisfy the 872 requirements – FAPIIS input module on CPARS collects items listed from contracting and grants officers and debarment/suspension officials • Collects basic identification information and provides capability to upload an attachment • Pre-populates from FPDS and CCR when possible – CCR collects the information regarding criminal / civil / administrative proceedings during vendor registration / renewal – FAPIIS search module on PPIRS provides central access to the collected items from • FAPIIS input module on CPARS • CCR criminal/civil/administrative proceedings data • Existing debarments and suspensions in EPLS • Existing past performance evaluations in PPIRS• DoD led cross-federal agency/functional design team meetings to flesh out the requirements and design
    36. 36. Effect of FAPIISProposed FAR Rule: Federal AwardeePerformance and Integrity Information System (74Fed. Reg. 45579)– Requires GSA to establish and maintain a data system containing specific information on the integrity and performance of covered contractors.– Requires awarding officials to review the data system and consider other past performance information when making any past performance evaluation or responsibility determination

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