NewsFederal Announcements and Updates
As changes are made to the employment requirements under federal contracts by actions of the administration or congress, Pillar updates its material in a timely fashion. The changes (or possible changes being considered) for the current year are reflected below with some commentary on each. A full discussion of each subject is contained in Pillar’s Employment Requirements of Federal Contractors and Subcontractors.
The CARES Act (March 27, 2020) Section 3610, authorized agencies to use funds from any appropriations act to supplement contract payments to reimburse for expanded leave payments to contractor employees, made to keep a contractor’s workforce in a “ready state,” for those contractors whose employees are prevented by any shut-down order due to COVID-19, from accessing their contractor designated and government approved place of work, and are unable to telework.
On October 2, 2019, the acquisition councils issued a Proposed Rule (PR) to amend the FAR for statutory increases to the Simplified Acquisition Threshold (SAT) and Micro-Purchase Threshold (see Pillar’s blog). The PR estimates that the increase to the SAT will result in an additional $450 million in federal contracts falling below the SAT (about 10% of total federal contracts).
On September 12, 2019, the EEOC announced its intention not to seek a renewal for the Component 2 data collection from the OMB. The notice explains that the original 2016 EEOC estimate of the burden of the collection was less than 1/20th (<5%) of the amount produced by following GAO and OMB guidelines (recall that the burden estimate was questioned by and used as part of the OMB’s rationale for staying its approval for the collection, and the Court found that to be “arbitrary and capricious”).