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Barry McVay's FEDERAL CONTRACTS DISPATCH

DATE: February 10, 2000

FROM: Barry McVay, CPCM

SUBJECT: Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS); Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-119, Federal Participation in the Development and Use of Voluntary Consensus Standards and in Conformity Assessment Activities

SOURCE: Federal Register, February 10, 2000, Vol. 65, No. 28, page 6553

AGENCIES: Department of Defense (DOD)

ACTION: Final Rule

SYNOPSIS: DOD is amending the DFARS to instruct DOD contracting officers not to use the provision at Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 52.211-7, Alternatives to Government-Unique Standards, which invites offerors to propose alternatives to government-unique standards, because DOD uses the Single Process Initiative (SPI) to encourage offerors to propose alternatives to government-unique specifications and standards.

EFFECTIVE DATE: February 10, 2000.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Melissa Rider, Defense Acquisition Regulations Council, PDUSD(AT&L)DP(DAR), IMD 3D139, 3062 Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301-3062, 703-602-4245; fax 703-602-0350. Cite DFARS Case 99-D024.

SUPPLEMENTAL INFORMATION: This final DFARS rule supplements the final FAR rule in Federal Acquisition Circular (FAC) 97-14 that implemented OMB Circular A-119 by adding FAR 52.211-7 to permit offerors to propose voluntary consensus standards as alternatives to the government-unique standards included in a solicitation. According to the prescription in paragraph (b) of FAR 11.107, Solicitation Provision, use of FAR 52.211-7 is optional for agencies that use the categorical method of reporting their use of voluntary consensus standards to the National Institute of Standards and Technology. DOD uses the categorical method of reporting; furthermore, it uses the SPI procedures at DFARS 211.273 and 252.211-7005, both titled "Substitutions for Military or Federal Specifications and Standards", to encourage offerors to propose industry standards as alternatives to government-unique specifications and standards.

On November 9, 1999, DOD published a proposed rule that would add DFARS Subpart 211.1, Selecting and Developing Requirements Documents, consisting of DFARS 211.107, Solicitation Provision, which would state, "DOD uses the categorical method of reporting. Do not use the provision at FAR 52.211-7, Alternatives to Government-Unique Standards, in DOD solicitations." One source submitted comments in response to the proposed rule. After considering the comment, DOD is adding DFARS Subpart 211.1 and DFARS 211.107 as proposed.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Barry McVay at 703-451-5953 or by e-mail to BarryMcVay@FedGovContracts.com.

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