Federal agencies and contractors are working hard to address the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic. In some cases, work must stop. In others, the work will increase or change dramatically. While contractors should look to contracting officers for guidance with respect to specific contracts, agency-wide guidance documents are beginning to shed light on the government’s expectations. We will be using this blog entry to collect and share agency guidance on performance of government contracts during the Coronavirus pandemic.
Department of Defense—
- Civilian Personnel Guidance for DoD Components (Mar. 8, 2020). Risk-based measures to minimize risk to civilian personnel and a limited telework policy.
- Guidance for Personnel Traveling During the Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (Mar. 11, 2020). Pre-travel and post-travel health guidance.
- Planning for Potential Novel Coronavirus Contract Impacts (Mar. 10, 2020). Contractors are encouraged to work with government program managers and requirements owners to determine if new measures need to be taken to ensure the welfare and safety of the workforce. Empowers contracting officers as the authority when contract performance is affected by COVID-19.
- The Role of Continuity in the COVID-19 Pandemic Response (Mar. 18, 2020). Reinforces the localized power of the Health Protection Conditions (HPCON) framework and Pandemic Plans that are developed by DoD Components.
- Contract Place of Performance — Public Health Considerations (Mar. 20, 2020). Extends the same telework flexibilities that are available to DoD service members and civilians to contractors, where appropriate.
- Determining and Making Commercial Item Procurements (Mar. 27, 2020). Lists class Commercial Item Determination (CID) to allow Contracting Officers maximum flexibility in awarding critical contracts for supplies and services related to the COVID-19 pandemic in a streamlined manner.
- Undefinitized Contract Actions, Class Deviation 2020-O0012 (Apr 3, 2020). For undefinitized contract actions (UCA), it removes the requirement in DFARS 217.7404-4(a) to limit obligations, if the UCA is related to the national emergency. It also allows the head of the contracting activity to waive the limitations in DFARS 217.7404(a)(1)(i), 217.7404-3(a), and 217.7404-4(a) for a UCA if the head determines the waiver is necessary due to the national emergency for COVID-19.
- Submission of Interim Vouchers under Classified Contracts, Class Deviation 2020-O0011 (Apr. 3, 2020). Directs contractors to submit interim vouchers under classified contracts to the payment office listed in the contract. The vouchers are provisionally approved by the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA).
- Progress Payment Rates, Class Deviation 2020-O0010 (Mar. 20, 2020). Increases progress payment rates at DFARS 232.502-2 for large business concerns to 90% and small business concerns to 95%.
- Progress Payment Rates Implementation Guidance (Apr. 3, 2020). Provides FAQs for Class Deviation 2020-O0010.
Department of the Army—
- Planning for Potential Novel Coronavirus Impacts (Mar. 12, 2020). Encourages increased communication, notes that contracting officers do not bear the responsibility to determine whether the excuse of COVID—19 applies, outlines causes for performance delays that are excusable and FAR provisions that excuse performance delays, and clarifies situations in which compensation is an option.
Department of the Navy—
- Withholds and Retentions During COVID-19 Memo (Mar. 20, 2020). Outlines objectives that maximize efficiency in the execution of contracts to positively impact cash flow for existing, pending and future contracts.
Defense Logistics Agency—
- Acquisition Message on Health and Safety Precautions and Contractor Reporting (Mar. 13, 2020). Encourages contractor reporting on the status of the welfare and safety of the contractor’s workforce and performance.
Washington Headquarters Services—
- Pentagon Facilities Access Restrictions (Mar. 13, 2020). Outlines visitor restrictions to the Pentagon facilities.
- Acquisition Q&As for telework, ongoing support contracts, and mission essential contracts (Mar. 14, 2020).
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers—
- Guidance on Hospital Conversions (Mar. 22, 2020). Provides guidance on Alternate Care Sites (ACS) to help states and municipalities develop facilities for ACSs and engage contractors to prepare them for medical use.
Department of Homeland Security, Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency—
- Identification of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers (Mar. 19, 2020). Provides guidance on the essential critical infrastructure workforce to assist in identifying which workers will maintain a normal work schedule.
Department of Labor—
- OFCCP National Interest Exemption Memorandum (March 17, 2020). Grants a three-month exemption from some requirements of the laws administered by the OFCCP.
Department of Veterans Affairs—
- State and Local Government Ordering Procedures (Mar. 20, 2020). Issues guidance that provides procedures for state and local governments ordering from VA Federal Supply Schedule Vendors.
General Services Administration—
- GSA COVID—19 Response Q&As (Mar. 27, 2020). Recommendations outlining how to manage COVID—19 in the arenas of real estate, acquisition, and government vehicles.
Office of Management and Budget—
- Managing Federal Contract Performance Issues Associated with the Novel Coronavirus (Mar. 20, 2020). Provides steps to ensure safety during contract performance and continued support of agency missions and FAQs on teleworking, mitigating the impact of COVID-19, procurement flexibilities and tracking activities.
Office of Personnel Management—
- Preliminary Guidance to Agencies during Coronavirus Disease 2019 (Mar. 3, 2020). Preliminary guidance to agencies outlining telework options, CDC guidance, international and domestic travel policies for federal employees, and visitor access to federal offices and buildings.
Husch Blackwell’s “State and Local COVID-19 Update”