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New Rule Removes Barriers to Using GSA Vehicles and Acquisition Support Services

Just in time for the busy end-of-FY buying season:  a new Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) final rule has removed the requirement for customer agencies to make a best procurement approach determination before using GSA as an acquisition provider.  This change will make it easier than ever for customers to use GSA vehicles for all of their last-minute procurement needs! 

What requirements are eliminated?

Specifically, this rule removes -

  • The requirement to do a determination of best procurement approach prior to issuing orders against GSA Schedules Program contracts (over $550,000), Government-wide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs) such as Alliant, and Multiple Award Contracts (MACs) like OASIS.    
  • The requirement to do a determination of best procurement approach prior to using GSA for assisted acquisitions.

This change will bring increased efficiency to the procurement process by eliminating unnecessary barriers to using GSA vehicles and GSA acquisition support services.  Easier access to GSA procurement solutions also means more potential business for vendors - it’s a win-win!  

What’s the background of this case?

The final rule for FAR Case 2018-015 Governmentwide and Other Interagency Contracts was published on May 6, 2019.  This rule amends the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to implement section 875 of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019, which removed the requirement for agencies to make a determination that the use of an interagency acquisition represents the best procurement approach.  The determination was required prior to requesting another agency conduct an acquisition on its behalf, and before placing an order against another agency’s indefinite-delivery contract vehicle.  This requirement will be removed in FAR 17.502-1(a).

When does this new rule go into effect?

The final rule goes into effect on June 5, 2019.  However, customer agencies may still have agency-level policies that require such a determination.


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