On July 29th, 2021, President Biden announced additional efforts to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates and to protect the federal workforce, including strengthening safety protocols for federal employees and contractors. Under the Biden Administration’s new guidance, in areas of high or substantial transmission of COVID-19, federal employees, contractors, and visitors must wear a mask inside federal buildings with limited exceptions. Individuals who are not fully vaccinated must wear a mask regardless of community transmission level.

Continue Reading President Biden Announces New COVID-19 Safety Protocols for Onsite Federal Contractors

On June 1, 2021, the Biden-Harris Administration announced that it intends to use the federal government’s purchasing power to grow federal contracting with small disadvantaged businesses by 50 percent, translating to an additional $100 billion over five years. This is one of many new steps intended to help narrow the racial wealth gap and reinvest in communities. In explaining this new policy goal, the Administration recognized that:

Continue Reading Biden-Harris Administration Announces Increase in Federal Contracting Goals for Small Disadvantaged Businesses

The Small Business Administration’s HUBZone program provides federal contracting assistance for qualified small business concerns located in historically underutilized business zones in an effort to increase employment opportunities, investment, and economic development in such areas. The Small Business Administration defines HUBZones and publishes a map identifying the location of all HUBZones. Certified businesses located in a HUBZone are eligible to participate in the HUBZone program goal of awarding at least three percent of federal contract dollars.

Continue Reading SBA Extends the HUBZone Map Freeze to June 30, 2023

On April 27, 2021, President Biden issued a new Executive Order that raises the federal contractor minimum wage to $15 per hour, from the current $10.95 per hour, starting January 30, 2022.

Biden’s new Executive Order is nearly a word for word retread of the Obama Administration’s Executive Order 13658 (originally setting a $10.10 federal contractor minimum wage), with some notable exceptions:

  • The federal contractor minimum wage is raised to $15 per hour starting January 30, 2022
  • The current tipped worker federal contractor minimum wage, setting a lower hourly minimum wage just for tipped workers, is phased out by January 1, 2024; and
  • The Trump Administration exemption for certain “recreational services on federal lands” (Executive Order 13838) is revoked.

What remains the “same” is the following:


Continue Reading $15 Federal Contractor Minimum Wage

Last week the Army awarded Microsoft the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) contract, a potentially $21 billion undertaking by the Army to develop next-generation night vision and “situational awareness capabilities” in a Heads Up Display. Unlike Microsoft’s last multi-billion dollar contract award, the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI), which is still pending before the Court of Federal Claims more than a year after Amazon filed its bid protest challenging the award in November 2019, IVAS is unlikely to experience the same fate. Why? Because IVAS was awarded under the Army’s Other Transaction authority (OTA) and is not subject to the same FAR rules as the JEDI contract.

Continue Reading The Army’s Newest $21 Billion Contract Is Not Your Typical Government Contract