Photo of Adelicia R. Cliffe

Adelicia Cliffe is a partner in the Washington, D.C. office, a member of the Steering Committee for the firm's Government Contracts Group, and a member of the International Trade Group. Addie is also co-chair of the firm’s National Security practice. Addie has been named as a nationally recognized practitioner in the government contracts field by Chambers USA.

On May 30, 2024, the Department of Defense (DoD) issued a final rule implementing Section 844 of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and Section 854 of the FY 2024 NDAA by amending DFARS 225.7018-2 and accompanying DFARS clause 252.225-7052, which restrict DoD from acquiring certain metals and magnets from “covered countries” of Iran, North Korea, Russia, and China, to prohibit even earlier inputs in the supply chain from occurring in these countries.  Despite comments discussing the infancy of the domestic market for many “covered materials”—defined as samarium-cobalt magnets, tantalum metals and alloys, tungsten metal powder, and tungsten heavy alloy or any finished or semi-finished component containing tungsten heavy alloy—the final rule expands the restrictions on sourcing covered materials from covered countries.  Currently, the rule requires that covered materials not be melted or produced in covered countries but, effective January 1, 2027, the updated rule prohibits covered materials being mined, refined, separated, melted or produced in one of the covered countries. The expansion of the focus of the prohibition all the way back to where these materials were mined is consistent with the U.S. government’s effort to develop the domestic industrial base for and encourage on-shoring of critical minerals, magnets, and metals.   Continue Reading DoD Expands Restrictions on Supply Chain for Certain Magnets, Tantalum, and Tungsten

On May 13, 2024, the Department of Defense (DoD) issued an instruction implementing policies and procedures that DoD will use to identify contractors (including uncleared contractors) requiring foreign ownership, control, and influence (FOCI) determinations, review related information, and address FOCI concerns.  These policies and procedures were put in place pursuant to Section 847 of the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act[1] (Section 847).  These FOCI requirements will, for the first time, subject many uncleared DoD contractors to rigorous disclosure requirements, scrutiny, and potential mitigation by the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency (DCSA). Continue Reading Why Should They Have All the Fun? DoD Instruction Expands DCSA’s FOCI Reach Beyond Cleared Contractors

On May 3, 2024, the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Council issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) regarding the prohibition on semiconductors produced by certain Chinese manufacturers, enacted in Section 5949(a)(1) of the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2023 (Section 5949) expanding on the prohibition on covered telecommunications equipment and services produced by Huawei, ZTE, and others from Section 889 of the FY 2019 NDAA (Section 889).    Continue Reading “(Don’t) Let the Chips Fall Where They May”:  FAR Council Previews Proposed Rule Implementing the Covered Semiconductor Prohibition  

On March 15, 2024, the General Services Administration (GSA) issued Acquisition Letter MV-2024-01 providing guidance to GSA contracting officers on the use of upfront payments for acquisitions of cloud-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS).  Specifically, this acquisition letter clarifies that despite statutory prohibitions against the use of “advance” payments outside of narrowly-prescribed circumstances, upfront payments for SaaS licenses do not constitute an “advance” payment subject to these restrictions when made under the following conditions:Continue Reading GSA Clarifies Permissibility of Upfront Payments for Software-as-a-Service Offerings

On April 1, 2024, the Department of Defense (DoD), General Services Administration (GSA), and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) issued a final rule updating the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to add Part 40 on information security and supply chain security. This first action did not implement any new requirements; however, separate rulemakings will follow to relocate existing information security and supply chain security policies and procedures to the new Part 40. Additionally, new related regulations will be housed in Part 40. These actions suggest that the flow of information security and supply chain regulations is likely to continue unabated for at least the next few years.Continue Reading New FAR Part 40 to Address Supply Chain and Information Security Requirements

On January 31, 2024, the Department of Defense (DoD) updated the 1260H List of entities identified as “Chinese military companies” operating in the United States, as it is required to do at least annually by Section 1260H of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2021.  Section 1260H defines a “Chinese military company” as an entity that is:Continue Reading DoD is Making its List, and Checking it Twice: DoD Updates 1260H Chinese Military Companies List

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2024, signed into law on December 22, 2023, 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 impose a new conflict of interest regime for government contractors with a connection to China, impose new restrictions and requirements, require government reporting to Congress on acquisition authorities and programs, and alter other processes and procedures to which government contractors are subject. The FY 2024 NDAA also includes the Federal Data Center Enhancement Act, the American Security Drone Act, and the Intelligence Authorization Act for FY 2024.Continue Reading The FY 2024 National Defense Authorization Act: Key Provisions Government Contractors Should Know

On October 4, 2023, Deputy Attorney General (DAG) Lisa O. Monaco announced the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) new safe harbor policy for voluntary self-disclosures made in connection with mergers and acquisitions (Safe Harbor Policy).  Following other announcements from DOJ over the past two years aimed at encouraging voluntary self-disclosures, the Safe Harbor Policy was adopted because DOJ does not want to “discourage companies with effective compliance programs from lawfully acquiring companies with ineffective compliance programs.”  Through this new policy, DOJ is aiming to incentivize acquirers to timely disclose misconduct discovered during the M&A process (including pre-closing diligence and post-closing integration).Continue Reading DOJ Announces Safe Harbor for Acquirers Who Disclose Pre-Acquisition Misconduct

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