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The House earlier this week voted to block the Trump administration from furloughing 150 Office of Personnel Management employees if Congress does not agree by the end of June to support a plan to merge OPM with the General Services Administration, but has since reversed course following House pushback.  Read More



The Trump administration doesn't yet have a legal analysis to justify why it believes it can merge the Office of Personnel Management with the General Services Administration. Attorneys at OPM are still developing that analysis, even as the administration had told Congress it needed a commitment to merge the two agencies by June 30 or else risk the potential for furloughs of OPM employees.  Read More



With industry groups and government watchdog organizations expressing concern, the proposed merger of the Office of Personnel Management with the General Services Administration, does not appear likely to happen.  Read More



The proposed Administrative Services Merger Act of 2019 -- the Trump administration's legislative proposal that was sent to lawmakers would eliminate the Office of Personnel Management as an independent entity and move that agency's functions to the General Services Administration -- a move some fear could take years to implement.  Read More



It is believed, that a sizable portion of the "tax gap" of revenues that go uncollected by the Internal Revenue Service is attributable to current and would-be federal contractors. Though the IRS is prohibited from sharing such information with agency procurement staff, contracting officers are supposed to examine the self-reporting of tax debts from the companies to which they give awards. That is not always occurring, according to a recent Government Accountability Office report addressed to leaders of the House Oversight and Reform and the Ways and Means committees.  Read More



For its 10th anniversary, the agenda features key stakeholders across the in-house, law firm and government realms. The stage is thus set for the DCAA & DCMA-focused gathering that you cannot afford to miss for benchmarking, meeting with your peers, and learning practical solutions to both new and persistent auditing and compliance hurdles.  Read More



Stories continue to emerge suggesting more shaky contracting practices at the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Earlier this week when an inspector publicly faulted FEMA's handling of two contracts for procuring tarpaulins and plastic sheeting to aid victims of Hurricane Maria's 2017 devastation of Puerto Rico. In hurrying to award the supply work to the Bronze Star LLC company, procurement staff used Google rather than the verified firms on FEMA's Disaster Response Registry, said the May 7 report from the Homeland Security Department inspector general, which the agency challenged.  Read More



President Donald Trump intends to nominate Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan to serve as Pentagon chief on a full-time basis, The New York Times reported Thursday. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, White House press secretary, announced the president's intention in by tweet posted this week.  Read More



The Government Accountability Office reports that they were unable to track spending across the four agencies that provided disaster relief over the last several years following the triple hurricanes and California wildfires due to improper record-keeping of contracts. A GAO's report examined 23 sample contracts during the disaster recovery efforts by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Army Corps of Engineers, the Coast Guard and the Defense Logistics Agency. Its conclusion: the full extent of contracting related to the 2017 disasters is unknown due to Homeland Security Department's irregular schedule for closing contracts and inconsistent use of standard contracting codes.  Read More



The complexity of federal procurements and advancing technology, often mean that small businesses often and the forefront of development with agile skill-sets are best positioned to handle some jobs. However, small business is often unable to compete for contracts they might be best suited for--aside from daunting process--once a contract might be awarded, smaller firms do not have the resources of larger businesses to sustain operations while awaiting payment.  Read More



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