Friday Flash 04.23.21

Part 2: Cost Reimbursement Capability for the MAS Program

Two weeks ago, Part 1 of this blog series focused, in part, on how BIC MAC duplicates the Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) program. Part 1 included a “table of features” which outlined the significant convergence in key contractual terms and capabilities between BIC MAC and the MAS program. The table showed that except for one feature, cost-reimbursement contracting, BIC MAC essentially would mirror key aspects of the MAS program. BIC MAC would provide for cost reimbursement task orders against the backdrop of the MAS program, which, currently, does not include this capability, as it is limited in scope to commercial item task orders. The blurring of lines between BIC MAC and the MAS program brings us to the focus of this blog: adding cost reimbursement capability to MAS contracts. 

As readers of the FAR & Beyond blog know, adding cost reimbursement capability has long been seen as a wonderful opportunity for GSA to increase value for customer agencies. Cost reimbursement capability would enhance customer agency access to an existing base of small, medium, and large businesses.  Significantly, GSA recently indicated that of the respondents to its Request for Information (RFI) for BIC MAC, over 80 percent (863 of 1048 respondents) already had MAS contracts. Thus, there is already an established base of current contractors (small, medium, and large) with contracts readily available to be modified to provide cost reimbursement capability.   

There is nothing in statute that limits the MAS program solely to commercial item contracting other than GSA’s decision to so constrain the program. Given GSA’s discretion on this subject, and in the face of the proposed BIC MAC follow-on to OASIS, it is time for GSA to modify the MAS program to add cost reimbursement capability.

Modifying the MAS program to establish hybrid contracts that include both commercial and cost reimbursement capabilities at the task order level has been done before. One need only look to GSA’s Alliant, OASIS, and OASIS SB contract vehicles.  Each of these contracts include both capabilities. So, the precedent has been set, and, if commercial and cost reimbursement capabilities can be leveraged for other multiple award IDIQs, then it is clear they can be leveraged for the MAS program, especially where doing so would work to increase competition, reduce contracting costs and bring greater value for customer agencies.    

By modifying existing MAS contracts to include both commercial task orders and cost reimbursement task orders, GSA would be providing a “win-win-win” for customer agencies, GSA, and industry. Consider just some of the potential benefits of expanding the MAS program to include cost reimbursement task orders:    

  • GSA can leverage existing MAS contracting and systems infrastructures, rather than creating a duplicative, new infrastructure for BIC MAC, thereby by reducing administrative and management costs.
  • GSA can provide customer agencies increased access to service capabilities by providing a new channel to thousands of MAS contractors.
  • GSA can increase small business access to opportunities by allowing customer agencies to compete cost reimbursement task orders among MAS contractors (recall that the MAS Program represents the single largest government channel for small businesses, (over 30 percent of the dollar volume) and thus, provides an opportunity to meet a critical goal of the new Administration).
  • GSA can avoid the unintended consequence of unnecessary duplication of the MAS Program envisioned under the current BIC MAC construct. By so doing, GSA can promote efficiency in the expenditure of bid and proposal preparation dollars by vendors, especially during these challenging economic times.
  • GSA can retain the flexibility to create OASIS and OASIS SB follow-on contract vehicles that are complimentary to each other and to the MAS program, providing targeted opportunities for firms meeting follow-on OASIS requirements, along with the ability for non-OASIS contractors to participate in the market and gain experience under the MAS Program.

In light of the foregoing, and with the challenges agencies face, it is the time to bring efficiency and creativity to contracting. Expanding the MAS Program through the addition of cost reimbursement capabilities will enhance the creation of complimentary OASIS and OASIS SB follow-on contract vehicles.  More on how customer agencies have found the OASIS and OASIS SB in Part 3 of the series. GSA’s current OASIS is built to last. 

 

Register Now: 2021 Spring Training Conference – The Biden Administration’s Priorities and the Role of Acquisition

The Coalition is pleased to announce that registration is officially open for ou2021 Spring Training Conference – The Biden Administration’s Priorities and the Role of Acquisition. The virtual training conference will be held on May 19-20, 2021. Similar to our 2020 virtual Fall Training Conference, the Spring event will combine sessions from our general conference and our healthcare forum with only one registration necessary to attend.

As indicated by the title, this year’s conference offers multiple sessions that cover four of the Biden Administration’s top priorities, including the COVID-19 response, Sustainability, Made in America and Domestic Sourcing, and increased opportunities for Small Businesses to stimulate the economy. Popular sessions from past conferences will also make a return, including both the Legal and the “Healthcare Legal” panels. We are excited to confirm that the conference will feature a “one-on-one” discussion with the General Services Administration (GSA) Federal Acquisition Service (FAS) Commissioner Sonny Hashmi, moderated by Federal News Network’s Executive Editor Jason Miller.

We have invited speakers from GSA, the Department of Defense (DoD), the Department of Human and Health Services (HHS), the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and the Small Business Administration (SBA) to participate in the conference. Procurement programs and initiatives like GSA’s BIC MAC, the partnership between the VA and the Defense Logistics Agency, IT Modernization and Cybersecurity requirements for all contractors will also be on the agenda.

The full draft agenda can be viewed here. The registration link can be found hereIf you are interested in sponsorship opportunities, please contact Matt Cahill at mattcahill@thecgp.org.

Click here to register.

Day One

To kick off the Spring Conference, we have invited Michael Parrish, Principal Executive Director and Chief Acquisition Officer of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Acquisition, Logistics, and Construction (OALC) to discuss his vision for the VA’s acquisition operations and contracting programs during the Keynote Address for day one.

The Keynote Address will be followed by the Legal Panel, which will feature the team of Jonathan Aronie, Partner, Sheppard Mullin (confirmed); Lorraine Campos, Partner, Crowell & Moring (confirmed); David Dowd, Partner, Mayer Brown (confirmed); and Alex Sarria, Member, Miller & Chevalier (confirmed) to discuss the latest Federal procurement related legal developments.

After a lunch break, we will be holding our first two concurrent afternoon sessions: The Cyber and Supply Chain Panel, and the VA and DLA Partnership Panel. The Cyber and Supply Chain Panel, moderated by Bob Metzger, Shareholder, Rogers Joseph O’Donnell (confirmed), includes John Tenaglia, Principal Director, DPC (confirmed); Katie Arrington, Chief Information Security Officer for Acquisition and Sustainment, DoD (confirmed); and Bob Kolasky, Director of the National Risk Management Center, DHS (confirmed).

Next on the agenda, we have invited Phil Christy, OALC Deputy Executive Director, VA; and Bill Kenny, Executive Director, Contracting and Acquisition Management, DLA to join the VA and DLA Partnership session.  This panel will be followed by the concurrent VA Modernization Panel and the Systems and Consolidated MAS PanelPhil Christy has also been invited to participate in the VA Modernization Panel, and he will be joined by Andrew Centineo, Executive Director, Procurement and Logistics, VHA (confirmed) to discuss VA’s plans to modernize its supply chain. At the same time, we have invited the GSA team of Judith Zawatsky, Assistant Commissioner, Office of Systems Management; Stephanie Shutt, Director, MAS PMO; and Steve Sizemore, Project Manager, MAS PMO to provide updates on GSA e-systems and Schedules consolidation during the Systems and Consolidated MAS Panel.

The final two concurrent afternoon panels for day one are the Sustainable Procurement Panel and the Services Marketplace Panel. For the Sustainable Procurement Panel, we have invited Sonal Larsen, Senior Advisor to the Administrator, Climate, GSA (confirmed); Holly Elwood, Senior Advisor, Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Program, EPA; and Porter Glock, Procurement Analyst, Office of Management and Budget, Office of Federal Procurement Policy. This session will be moderated by Steve Schooner, Nash & Cibinic Professor of Government Procurement Law, George Washington University College of Law (confirmed). The Services Marketplace Panel features Tiffany Hixson, Assistant Commissioner, Office of Professional Services & Human Capital Categories, GSA (invited); Laura Stanton, Assistant Commissioner, Information Technology Category, GSA (invited); and Crystal Philcox, Assistant Commissioner, Enterprise Strategy Management, GSA (invited).

At the conclusion of day one, we will be holding eight breakout sessions. These breakouts include Office Products; Industrial Products/Update from the SSAC; Services on GSA Schedules; IT; VA Pharmaceuticals; VA FSS; DLA MSPV; and Small Business Opportunities. Be sure to check the agenda to see which government speakers we have invited to participate.

Day Two

Day 2 will be another day of informative sessions, where we will begin with Katy Kale, GSA’s Deputy Administrator, whom we have invited to deliver the second Keynote Address. At this time, we hope to hear her vision for how GSA’s governmentwide acquisition programs are working to support the Administration’s priorities.

After the Keynote Address, members will have the option to choose between attending the COVID Logistics and Acquisition Panel and the FAS Panel. The COVID Logistics and Acquisition Panel will be joined by Jeff Koses, Senior Procurement Executive, GSA (invited); Brig. Gen. David Sanford, Director, Supply Chain Advisory Group, United States Air Force (confirmed); and Joe Hamel, Strategic Innovation and Emerging Technology Manager, HHS (confirmed). For the FAS panel, we have invited a number of GSA executives, including Tom Howder, Deputy Commissioner; Charlotte Phelan, Assistant Commissioner, Office of Travel, Transportation, and Logistics; Erv Koehler, Assistant Commissioner, Customer Accounts and Stakeholder Engagement, GSA; and Mark Lee, Assistant Commissioner, Office of Policy and Compliance.

Members will then choose to attend either the View from the Senate Panel or the Oversight PanelTim Cook, Executive Director of the Center for Procurement Advocacy, will moderate the View from the Senate Panel, where we have invited David Weinberg, Staff Director, Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs; and Arun Seraphin, Professional Staff Member, Senate Committee on Armed Services to participate. Oversight experts Michael Missal, Inspector General, VA (confirmed); and Shelby Oakley, Director, GAO (invited) will speak during the Oversight Panel.

After a lunch break, we will resume with the Healthcare Legal Panel, and the previously mentioned Discussion with FAS Commissioner Sonny Hashmi. The Healthcare Legal Panel consists of James Kim, Partner, McDermott Will & Emery (confirmed); Joy Sturm, Partner, Hogan Lovells (confirmed); Stephen Ruscus, Partner, Morgan Lewis (confirmed); and Jonathan Aronie, Partner, Sheppard Mullin (confirmed), who will discuss recent healthcare-related policies and legal developments. The confirmed Discussion with FAS Commissioner Sonny Hashmi, moderated by Jason Miller with Federal News Network, will cover the Commissioner’s vision for FAS operations in delivering best value mission support to customer agencies, as well as how FAS is supporting the Administration’s priorities.

Our final two panels are the IT Modernization Panel – GSA’s Role and the Buy American and Domestic Sourcing Panel. We have invited Dave Zvenyach, Director, Technology Transformation Services, GSA; Keith Nakasone, Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Acquisition, Office of IT Category, GSA; and Nick West, Deputy Director, Office of Policy, Integrity & Workforce, GSA to provide their expertise during the IT Modernization Panel. The Buy American and Domestic Sourcing Panel consists of the diverse team of Kim Herrington, Principal Director/Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Industrial Policy, DoD (confirmed); Dr. Gary Disbow, Director, Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, HHS (invited); Jean Heilman Grier, Principal and Manager, Trade Practice, Djaghe LLC (confirmed); and Scott Calisti, Director, Contract Policy, DPC (confirmed). The session will be moderated by Moshe Schwartz, President, Etherton and Associates (confirmed).

Six more breakout sessions will be offered during the second day. These breakouts include VA MSPV Program; DLA/DHA Pharmaceuticals; GWAC/MAC; Global Supply/4PL; BIC MAC; and Furniture. Once again, the invited speakers for these sessions can be found in the agenda.

The Coalition is thrilled to be hosting this comprehensive two-day conference featuring experts across Government and industry. If you have any questions about the agenda, please contact Michael Hanafin at mhanafin@thecgp.orgIn the meantime, we sincerely hope you will plan to attend this important event.

 

New Look for Beta.SAM.gov Debuts on Monday

The General Services Administration (GSA) posted a notice that an updated look and feel for beta.SAM.gov will be launched on April 26. The updated design features a new homepage, as well as changes to help pages and search functions. Each domain, such as contract opportunities and contract data reports, will have a dedicated landing page or starting point for users. Help and training resources related to each domain will be accessible from these landing pages. All help resources will be centralized at the Federal Service Desk, and the new help landing page will highlight the most popular help topics. The new search engine addresses issues that were raised by users, and is designed to make it easier to find and use advanced search filters. A new search can now be started from the menu bar of any page. To learn more about the new design, GSA has provided a Before and After Video and a Before and After Guide.   

 

OMB Announces IT Modernization Priorities

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has announced four areas of focus to support Federal technology modernization, according to Federal News NetworkThe areas OMB plans to focus on are: 

  • Modernizing websites and services including utilizing digital signatures to its fullest extent by using already existing Memorandums M-19-17 and M-00-15;
  • Digitizing forms and government services; 
  • Electronic consent and access to individual’s records; and 
  • Interoperability of data to benefit public-facing services by using tools like application programming interfaces (APIs). 

OMB plans to partner with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to manage the new Hiring Assessment Line of Business (LOB). The Hiring Assessment LOB supports the implementation of effective assessments and related efforts including government-wide hiring actions and shared certificates. The Biden administration is requiring all agencies to fund this effort by 2022. In addition to the Hiring Assessment LOB, OMB wants agencies to invest in rebuilding their HR workforce to support recruitment and hiring efforts. 

 

DoD’s Defense Health Program Faces Significant Deficit  

Federal News Network reported that the Department of Defense’s (DoD) Defense Health Program (DHP) is experiencing a significant deficit. Currently, the DHP is suffering from $673 million in COVID-19 related expenses, and the number is expected to grow to more than $1.8 billion. About $1 billion of these costs will need to be paid to the private sector. DoD is still assessing the cost of its support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) missions.  

The DHP’s first priority is delivering healthcare to service members, their families, civilians, and retirees, and the shortage will not affect the medical care that they receive. The DHP was budgeted over $33 million for 2021. More than $9 million goes to care provided by the military, and about $16 billion is paid out to the private sector. The rest of the funding goes to other areas including research, maintenance, and training. The CARES Act gave the DHP a boosted $2.2 billion in 2020. The DHP is undergoing a reorganization currently as the Defense Health Agency (DHA) continues to acquire military hospitals and clinics from the services. This process is expected to be finished by the end of the year. DoD is considering large cutbacks in the DHP’s medical staff. 

 

Upcoming MAS Refresh and Mass Mod 

On April 15, the General Services Administration (GSA) announced that they are planning to issue Refresh #6 with Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) Solicitation 47QSMD20R0001 and mass modification to all existing contracts in May 2021. GSA Federal Acquisition Service (FAS) will issue a bilateral modification to apply the changes to existing MAS contracts. Contractors will have 90 days to accept the mass modification.  

The changes to the MAS are the following: 

  • Implementation of the Verified Products Portal (VPP), a manufacturer and wholesaler-facing portal containing authoritative product content that will standardize catalog-data for commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) products published under the MAS program; 
  • Revise scope of MAS Solicitation to authorize only those drones approved through the Defense Innovation Unit’s (DIU) Blue sUAS Program; 
  • Incorporate updated Service Contract Labor Standards (SCLS) Wage Determinations; 
  • Replace digital certificates with DocuSign for electronic signature of documents and FAS ID for authentication into eOffer/eMod, rendering digital certificates unnecessary; 
  • Incorporate clarification on Ability One Authorized Distributors;. 
  • Incorporate various additional updates to SCP-FSS-001: 
  • Clarification on offering identical items; 
  • Technical Factor 2: Past Performance in SCP-FSS-001, Instructions Applicable to All Offerors; 
  • Temporary waiver of certain requirements to directly support the Government’s response to COVID-19; and 
  • Incorporate clause and provision updates through Federal Acquisition Circular (FAC) 2021-02 through 2021-05 and GSAR Change 114 through 123. 

GSA will accept industry comments on the planned changes through April 29, 2021. If you have any feedback, please contact Sean Nulty at snulty@thecgp.org 

 

CIO-SP4 New Release Date 

The National Institutes of Health Information Technology Acquisition and Assessment Center (NITAAC) announced that the request for proposals (RFP) for CIO-SP4 Government-wide Acquisition Contract (GWAC) is expected to be released on Thursday, April 29. NITAAC also released an update on the proposals for CIO-SP4. 

Once CIO-SP4 is released, the Coalition will work quickly to reschedule its planned webinar with PilieroMazza, covering the following:

  • Preparing for CIO-SP4 proposal (strategy, planning, budgeting);
  • JV limitation language in the RFP;
  • HUBZone recertification issues, protest risks given time of award (impact of new rules);
  • Past performance use for teams, subs, and JVs;
  • CTAs under CIO-SP4;
  • off-ramp provisions maybe draconian; and
  • moving from a CIO-SP4 small to a large CIO-SP4 and back again.

 

OPM Considers Changes to Remote Work Policies

Federal Computer Week reported that the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is working on guidance for remote and telework in the Federal Government after the pandemic. Specifically, the agency is looking at what potential changes may be needed in regards to locality pay and remote work policies. Currently, the pay scheme is based on the General Schedule classification system, and pay is supplemented with percentage rate increases based on an employee’s geographic location. OPM describes telework as employees splitting time between working in the office and working away from the office. Remote work is described as employees working from a completely different geographic location. For teleworkers, locality pay is determined by the location of their office, and for remote workers, locality pay is determined by their teleworking location.  

There is concern that fully remote workers could try to obtain higher locality pay by moving to certain locations. OPM has not yet decided if this issue will require changes, and whether these changes would be legislative or regulatory. However, the agency made it clear that remote work and pay locality issues will need to be sorted through if remote work becomes part of overall human capital management and strategic planning. OPM plans to support agencies with flexible guidance for post-pandemic work. In addition to remote work policies and locality pay, OPM is also looking into performance management and work hours. 

 

Update on the Latest Catalog Management Initiatives from GSA 

On April 16, General Services Administration (GSA) released the presentation materials from the catalog management team’s recent update to industry partners with the Heartland Acquisition Center (HAC). The materials were posted on GSA Interact in order to share the briefing with all contractors which provides an overview of their three modernization efforts: 

  • Common Catalog Platform: A new web-based application for managing catalog data that will integrate with contracting systems, improve usability and functionality, and replace the Schedule Input Program (SIP); 
  • Authoritative Catalog Repository: A back-end modernization to GSA’s storage environment that will improve data accessibility and catalog publishing efficiency. 
  • Verified Products Portal: a new manufacturer and wholesaler facing portal for supplier authorization information and authoritative product content that will improve product representations to customers. 

GSA also shared some proposals that they are considering in order to further streamline contract administration for both industry and GSA contracting officers (see Slide 10 of the presentation): 

  • Moving to a three-pronged approach to modifications, so that certain changes can be published to GSA Advantage! immediately. 
  • Introducing new inventory management capabilities that improve contractor ability to communicate product unavailability to customers. 
  • Defining the term “temporary” for both temporary removals and sales pricing. 

According to the announcement, GSA plans to release a RFI on this topic to collect industry’s feedback.  The RFI will be posted on the GSA Catalog Management “community” page on Interact. 

 

Legal Corner: Finding the Weak Links – President Biden Executive Order Demands Review of Critical U.S. Supply Chains

By 

The Legal Corner provides the legal community with an opportunity to share insights and comments on legal issues of the day. The comments herein do not necessarily reflect the views of The Coalition for Government Procurement. 

On February 24, 2021, President Biden signed Executive Order 14017, “Executive Order on America’s Supply Chains,” requiring a review of global supply chains that support key U.S. industries in an attempt to improve supply chain security for the U.S. government and U.S. companies. The new Executive Order appears to be an initial step focused on information gathering. Comprehensive reforms and supply chain strategies are likely to follow once the White House has collected key information.

The Order outlines two types of assessments by government agencies: (1) an initial 100-Day Supply Chain Review focusing on key supply chain risks relating to semiconductors, batteries, strategic minerals, and pharmaceuticals; and (2) Sectoral Supply Chain Assessments in certain critical business sectors (e.g., national defense, public health, information and communication technology, energy, transportation, and agriculture), which will determine the extent to which these critical sectors are reliant on products from so-called “competitor nations.” Both categories of assessments require coordination among various executive agency heads, the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs (“APNSA”), and the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy (“APEP”).

The initial “100-Day Supply Chain Review” requires, over the next 100-days, various agencies to assess vulnerabilities and consider potential improvements in four areas:

Supply Chain Area Responsible Agency
Semiconductor manufacturing Department of Commerce
High-capacity batteries (including those for electric vehicles) Department of Energy
Rare earth elements Department of Defense
Pharmaceuticals Department of Health and Human Services

The broader “Sectoral Supply Chain Assessments” must be completed within the next year. For these assessments, the Order requires similar reports, but covering a broader range of supply chains, not focused as much on specific products or technologies:

Supply Chain Area Responsible Agency
Defense Department of Defense
Public health and biological preparedness Department of Health and Human Services
Information and communications technology Department of Commerce / Department of Homeland Security
Energy Department of Energy
Transportation Department of Transportation
Agriculture and food production Department of Agriculture

The review called for in the Executive Order was prompted, at least in part, by a global shortage of semiconductors (a key component in card and electronic devices), which began shortly after the Coronavirus pandemic began in 2020. The shortage highlighted the need for the U.S. to refocus on its supply chain security for critical items by reducing its dependency on foreign countries.  But, as noted in the Order, the government is looking at other issues more broadly beyond semiconductors, attempting to ensure that the U.S. (and other friendly nations) continue to have access to cutting-edge technologies while reducing reliance on supply chains that are vulnerable to disruptions and to interference by foreign powers.

The Administration has noted this Order is intended to be a successor to the “Ensuring the Future is Made in All of America by All of America’s WorkersOrder that President Biden signed on January 25, 2021. (You can read our previous blog about that Order here). This Order, along with the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act, Pub. L. No. 116-283 (you can read about the key provisions, including those on supply chain security, here), continue to indicate supply chain security likely will be a primary focus for the Biden Administration.

Industry partners may find themselves asked by agencies for input on these reports. To ensure that the government has the latest information, especially regarding supply chain risks, companies may find it useful to cooperate with these reviews. Where the end-result will inevitably be tightened restrictions requiring more U.S.-sourced products (including, potentially, products sourced from U.S. allies), and where the heightened restrictions will almost invariably mean higher costs, industry should be prepared to help government agencies conduct a proper cost-benefit analysis when making supply chain recommendations to the White House.

 

Healthcare Spotlight: VA to Pause Electronic Health Records Rollout 

 Fedscoop reported that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will pause the rollout of its Electronic Health Record (EHR) system at new sites while the agency conducts a strategic review of the program. VA Secretary Denis McDonough announced the strategic review in late March, and it received support from VA employees and Congressional stakeholders. The VA will be examining issues with EHR at the Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center in Spokane, Washington. The review is set to last up to 12 weeks. In February, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) recommended that the VA pause the rollout of the system. The next EHR rollout is set to take place in Columbus, Ohio, however, the timeline for the launch remains unclear. On April 14, the House Veterans Affairs Technology Modernization Subcommittee held a hearing regarding the rollout of the EHR program. The hearing can be found here. 

 

Agencies Increasing Acquisition Innovation During the Pandemic 

Federal News Network reported on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Federal procurement. Some agencies, like the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), have increased their use of Government-wide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs) to purchase IT solutions. Additionally, agencies like the General Services Administration (GSA) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are increasing their use of virtual product demos and interacting virtually with industry during the evaluation process for contractsGSA also announced that spending for small businesses through the Schedules increased to more than $6 billion in 2020, which GSA attributed to their flexibility and communications with Government and industry. 

 

CMMC May Not Have Enough Assessors to Meet Projected Timelines 

Defense contractors are not able to receive their Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) assessments, reported FedScoopThere has been a backlog with licensing CMMC assessors. Since the CMMC program obliges each contractor to hire a licensed assessor to inspect its network, the lack of assessors may create a problem. The CMMC Accreditation Body states that they are still on track to meet target projections, but so far only one company has been assessed. By 2025, all defense contractors are expected to have been verified by third-party assessors.  

 

Officials Consider Adding TMF Criteria to FITARA Scorecard 

According to Fedscoop, Government and industry experts have been calling for the House Government Operations Subcommittee to consider grading agencies on their use of the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF) as part of the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA) scorecard. The TMF can be used to help agencies modernize their legacy systems. During a subcommittee hearing last week, Kevin Walsh, Government Accountability Office (GAO) Director of IT and Cybersecurity Issues, stated that agencies who received TMF funding could be rewarded on the FITARA scorecard in some way. This suggestion comes as the subcommittee considers how to evolve the scorecard. Concerns have been raised about how quickly the TMF Board plans to approve IT modernization projects.  

Chairman of the Subcommittee, Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.), said that he hopes GAO is monitoring the TMF Board’s criteria for project approvals. He introduced the Performance Enhancement Reform Act, which would require agencies to include IT modernization investments, system upgrades, staff technology skills and expertise, and stakeholder feedback in their annual performance plans.   

 

Save the Date: GSA FAST Conference June 15-17  

The General Services Administration (GSA) announced that the Federal Acquisition Service Training (FAST) Virtual Conference will be held on June 15-17. The Conference will feature training from GSA and will provide attendees with continuous learning points. The Conference will be open to both Government and industry and will be free for attendees. To sign up to receive updates and information about the conference from GSA, click here.