This article was submitted by Warren Corbett, Managing Editor, Set-Aside Alert www.setasidealert.com.
Contractors would be required to certify that they don’t owe significant back taxes under legislation approved by the House. The tax provision is part of a major overhaul of defense acquisition practices, but it applies to all agencies. The House approved it April 28 by a vote of 417-3. It now goes to the Senate. The provision would require contractors to certify that they do not owe delinquent taxes of more than $3,000 at the time they bid on a contract. In January President Obama ordered the Treasury Department and the Office of Management and Budget to develop a plan to block contracts to tax scofflaws. He said federal contractors owe more than $5 billion in delinquent taxes. (Set-Aside Alert, 2/5)
The IMPROVE Acquisition Act, H.R. 5013, also calls for the Defense Department to increase its outreach to “nontraditional suppliers…of all business sizes,” companies that have not previously sought defense work. The Armed Services Committee’s Panel on Defense Acquisition Reform said small and mid-sized companies could be a source of innovation as well as increased competition. The bill aims to increase accountability by both defense acquisition personnel and contractors. Many of its provisions are aimed at services contracts, which now account for the majority of defense procurement dollars. The Acquisition Reform Panel said DOD policies are geared for buying weapons systems rather than services.