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This week’s episode covers the FAR clauses implementing the Federal Acquisition Supply Chain Security Act, updates to NASA’s Small Business Mentor Protégé Program, and DOJ’s new safe harbor policy for voluntary self-disclosures made in connection with mergers and acquisitions, and is hosted by Peter Eyre and Yuan Zhou. Crowell & Moring’s “Fastest 5 Minutes” is

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On October 5, 2023, the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Council published an interim rule to prohibit, in the performance of a government contract, the delivery or use of “covered articles” (which includes certain information technology and telecommunications equipment, hardware, systems, devices, software, and services) subject to a Federal Acquisition Supply Chain Security Act (FASCSA) exclusion or removal order.  The interim rule also imposes obligations for a related “reasonable inquiry” at the time of proposal submission and quarterly monitoring during contract performance.  These changes implement the FASCSA of 2018 (P.L. 115-390).  While the Federal Acquisition Security Council (FASC) and the order-issuing agencies (Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Defense (DoD), and the Office of the Director for National Intelligence (ODNI)) have not yet issued any such FASCSA orders, those orders will be identified in the System for Award Management (SAM) or – in some cases – identified in and specific to the contract and any resulting subcontracts.Continue Reading Coming December 4: Do You Know Where Your Supply Chain Risks Are? FAR Council Issues Interim Rule Requiring Contractor Diligence for FASC Exclusion and Removal Orders

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On June 9, 2023, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released M-23-16, Update to Memorandum M-22-18, which alters key deadlines and clarifies how agencies and software developers can comply with M-22-18.  The original memorandum, published in September 2022, required all federal agencies and their software developers to comply with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Secure Software Development Framework (SSDF), NIST SP 800-218, and the NIST Software Supply Chain Security Guidance (collectively, NIST Guidance) whenever third-party software is used on government information systems or otherwise affects government information. Continue Reading Softening the Blow: OMB Extends Software Supply Chain Security Deadline and Clarifies Scope

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The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2023, signed into law on December 23, 2022, makes numerous changes to acquisition policy. Crowell & Moring’s Government Contracts Group discusses the most consequential changes for government contractors here. These include changes that provide new opportunities for contractors to recover inflation-related costs, authorize new programs for small businesses, impose new clauses or reporting requirements on government contractors, require government reporting to Congress on acquisition authorities and programs, and alter other processes and procedures to which government contractors are subject. The FY 2023 NDAA also includes the Advancing American AI Act, the Intelligence Authorization Act for FY 2023, and the Water Resources Development Act of 2022, all of which include provisions relevant for government contractors. Continue Reading FY 2023 National Defense Authorization Act: Key Provisions Government Contractors Should Know

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Yesterday, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released Memorandum M-22-18, implementing software supply chain security requirements that will have a significant impact on software companies and vendors in accordance with Executive Order 14028, Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity.  The Memorandum requires all federal agencies and their software suppliers to comply with the NIST Secure Software Development Framework (SSDF)NIST SP 800-­218, and the NIST Software Supply Chain Security Guidance whenever third-party software is used on government information systems or otherwise affects government information.  The term “software” includes firmware, operating systems, applications, and application services (e.g., cloud-based software), as well as products containing software.  It is critical to note that these requirements will apply whenever there is a major version update or new software that the government will be using. Continue Reading Going Hard on Software: OMB Unveils Mandatory Software Supply Chain Security Compliance Requirements

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Last week, the United States Congress passed the $280 billion CHIPS and Science Act of 2022 (CHIPS Act)[1] to bolster domestic semiconductor and microchip manufacturing in the United States. The bipartisan legislation will facilitate federal investments in the form of grants, loans, and loan guarantees to eligible entities and create significant business opportunities for companies in the U.S. The legislation also provides funding and new programs to boost advanced workforce training and research and development in a range of scientific and technology areas. The legislation now awaits the signature of President Biden, who hailed its passage as “exactly what we need to be doing to grow our economy right now.”

The legislation seeks to reverse the decades-long decline in U.S. microchip and semiconductor manufacturing and counter the rise of China as a source for technologically advanced manufacturing processes and products. By boosting domestic manufacturing and supply chains, the legislation also aims to relieve the global semiconductor shortage that has plagued manufacturers of a diverse set of products – everything from automobiles to children’s toys – and has contributed to the nation’s supply chain woes for more than two years.

The cornerstone of the legislation is $52 billion that will be allocated to the U.S. Department of Commerce semiconductor initiative to develop and expand domestic manufacturing capacity. Implementation of that program was already underway at the Department of Commerce[2], following Congressional authorization in the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (FY21 NDAA), and the legislation passed last week now provides the critical funding needed to commence direct federal incentives for the construction, expansion, or modernization of semiconductor manufacturing facilities. Continue Reading The CHIPS Are Down and Incentives Flow as Congress Attempts to Vitalize the U.S. Semiconductor Industry

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During December 2021, the House and Senate reached agreement on a compromise National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2022.  On December 23, 2021, Congress presented S. 1605 to President Biden, which he signed on December 27, 2021.

The FY2022 NDAA contains numerous provisions relating to acquisition policy—which provide new opportunities for government contractors, will result in the imposition of new clauses or reporting requirements on government contractors, require government reporting to Congress on acquisition authorities and programs, alter processes and/or procedures to which government contractors are subject, etc.  Crowell & Moring’s Government Contracts Group discusses the most consequential changes in the FY2022 NDAA for government contractors below.
Continue Reading National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022: Acquisition Policy Changes of Which Government Contractors Should Be Aware

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The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (“Infrastructure Act”)[1] signed by President Biden on November 15, 2021 includes funding for research and development of critical minerals mining, recycling, and reclamation and permits loan guarantees for domestic critical minerals supply projects in an effort to eliminate U.S. reliance on critical minerals sources susceptible to supply disruptions. 

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Yesterday, President Biden issued a Fact Sheet entitled Biden Administration Efforts to Address Bottlenecks at Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, Moving Goods from Ship to Shelf to help address the “delays and congestion” across the transportation supply chain. As has been widely reported in recent weeks and months, the global supply chain has

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This week’s episode covers the Department of Commerce’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking relating information and communications technology and services, an update from the Procurement Collusion Strike Force, GAO testimony about ongoing supply chain challenges at the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the American Jobs Plan, and is hosted by partner Peter Eyre and counsel Monica