The Department of Defense (DoD), General Services Administration (GSA), and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) have proposed to amend the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to expand the scope of contractor duties with respect to their employees' personal conflicts of interest (PCIs). The FAR currently imposes PCI prevention requirements only where contractor personnel are performing "acquisition functions closely associated with inherently governmental functions." The proposed amendment would extend those requirements to apply where contractor employees are performing any "function closely associated with inherently governmental functions," including such tasks as organizational and strategic planning, budget preparation, training, and inspection services. This proposed rule change would significantly impact a large number of contracts across a range of services, and its development should be followed closely.
Current PCI Requirements -
Under the FAR, a PCI arises when an employee "has a financial interest, personal activity, or relationships that could impair the employee's ability to act impartially and in the best interest of the Government when performing under [a] contract." The FAR's current PCI rules only apply where a contractor's employee is performing an "acquisition function closely associated with inherently governmental functions." The activities covered by that term are relatively straightforward, and are enumerated in the regulation as follows...
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