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GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION ACQUISITION MANUAL (GSAM)


Part 515—Contracting by Negotiation

Subpart 515.2—Solicitation and Receipt of Proposals and Information

515.204  Contract format.

515.204-1  Uniform contract format.

(a) The uniform contract format is not required for leases of real property.

(b) Each solicitation and contract must include the two notices in paragraphs (b)(1) and (b)(2) of this subsection, except that acquisitions of leasehold interests in real property, must include only the notice in (b)(1):

(1) The information collection requirements contained in this solicitation/contract are either required by regulation or approved by the Office of Management and Budget pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act and assigned OMB Control No. 3090-0163.”

(2) GSA’s hours of operation are 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Requests for preaward debriefings postmarked or otherwise submitted after 4:30 p.m. will be considered submitted the following business day. Requests for postaward debriefings delivered after 4:30 p.m. will be considered received and filed the following business day.”

515.205  Issuing solicitations.

Potential sources, as used in FAR 15.205, include both of the following:

(a) The incumbent contractor, except when its written response to the notice of contract action under FAR Subpart 5.2 states a negative interest.

(b) Offerors that responded to recent solicitations for the same or similar items.

515.207  Handling proposals and information.

(a) Unclassified Proposals. In most cases, the best practice is to require offerors to submit proposals and modifications to the issuing contracting office. You may chose to use the local Business Service Center (BSC) for receipt and safeguarding of proposals. If so, make appropriate arrangements with the BSC.

(b) Classified Proposals. Handle classified proposals and quotations according to 504.4, 41 CFR Part 105-60, and GSA Freedom of Information Act procedures at http://www.gsa.gov/staff/c/ca/FOIA/FoiaProc/mainpage.html.

(c) Recording of offers. Abstracts help to summarize key aspects of proposals when you receive multiple responses to a solicitation (see FAR 4.803(a)(10)).

(1) You may use GSA or Standard Forms prescribed for abstracting bids in sealed bidding to abstract proposals or quotations in competitively negotiated procurements. You may modify the forms to include the information necessary for evaluation.

(2) Abstracts contain contractor bid or proposal information and source selection information. See FAR 15.201, 15.207, 15.306, 15.5, and 24.2 about disclosing information.

515.209  Solicitation provisions and contract clauses.

515.209-70  Examination of records by GSA clause.

Clause for other than multiple award schedules

(a) For other than multiple award schedule (MAS) contracts, insert the clause at 552.215-70, Examination of Records by GSA, in solicitations and contracts over $100,000, including acquisitions of leasehold interests in real property, that meet any of the conditions listed below:

(1) Involve the use or disposition of Government-furnished property.

(2) Provide for advance payments, progress payments based on cost, or guaranteed loan.

(3) Contain a price warranty or price reduction clause.

(4) Involve income to the Government where income is based on operations under the control of the contractor.

(5) Include an economic price adjustment clause where the adjustment is not based solely on an established, third party index.

(6) Are requirements, indefinite-quantity, or letter type contracts as defined in FAR Part 16.

(7) Are subject to adjustment based on a negotiated cost escalation base.

(8) Contain the provision at FAR 52.223-4, Recovered Material Certification.

(b) You may modify the clause at 552.215-70 to define the specific area of audit (e.g., the use or disposition of Government-furnished property, compliance with the price reduction clause). Counsel and the Assistant Inspector General-Auditing or Regional Inspector General-Auditing, as appropriate, must concur in any modifications to the clause.

Clause for multiple award schedules

(c) Insert the clause at 552.215-71, Examination of Records by GSA (Multiple Award Schedule), in solicitations and contracts for MAS contracts.

(d) With the Senior Procurement’s Executive approval, you may modify the clause at 552.215-71 to provide for post-award access to and the right to examine records to verify that the pre-award/modification pricing, sales or other data related to the supplies or services offered under the contract which formed the basis for the award/modification was accurate, current, and complete. The following procedures apply:

(1) Such a modification of the clause must provide for the right of access to expire 2 years after award or modification.

(2) Before modifying the clause, you must make a determination that absent such access there is a likelihood of significant harm to the Government and submit it to the Senior Procurement Executive for approval.

(3) The determinations under paragraph (d)(2) must be made on a schedule-by-schedule basis.

515.210  Forms.

515.210-70  GSA Form 1602.

You may use GSA Form 1602, Notice Concerning Solicitation, to do any of the following:

(a) Describe the type of contract, the duration of the contract, and the type of supplies or services being procured.

(b) Direct the attention of prospective offerors to special requirements which, if overlooked, may result in rejection of the offer.

(c) Highlight significant changes from previous solicitations covering the same supplies or services.

(d) Include other special notices as appropriate.

Subpart 515.3—Source Selection

515.300  Scope of subpart

In addition to the policies and procedures of FAR 15.3, Appendix 515A, Source Selection Procedures, provides guidance and advice on various source selection techniques.

515.305  Proposal evaluation.

(a) Restrictions placed on a proposal by the submitter. If you receive a proposal with more restrictive conditions than those in the provision at FAR 52.215-1(e), ask whether the submitter is willing to accept the conditions of the paragraph at FAR 52.215-1(e). If the submitter refuses, consult with legal counsel on whether to accept the proposal as marked or return it.

(b) Actions before releasing proposals. Before releasing any proposal to an evaluator you must take all the following actions:

(1) Obtain the signed original “Conflict of Interest Acknowledgment and Nondisclosure Agreement” from each Government and nongovernment individual serving as an evaluator. Use the Acknowledgment/Agreement in Figure 515.3-1.

(i) For employees of other Executive agencies, replace the reference in paragraph (c) of the Acknowledgement/Agreement to GSA’s supplemental standards with a reference to the applicable agency.

(ii) For nongovernment evaluators, substitute paragraph (c) of the Acknowledgement/Agreement with the language below and delete paragraph (h):

“(c) I have read and understand the requirements of subsection 27(a) and 27(b) of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy Act (41 U.S.C. 423).”

(2) Attach to each proposal a cover page bearing the following notice:

Government Notice for Handling Proposals
To anyone receiving this proposal or proposal abstract:
(1) This proposal must be used and disclosed for evaluation purposes only.
(2) You must apply a copy of this Government notice to any reproduction or abstract of this proposal.
(3) You must comply strictly with any authorized restrictive notices which the submitter places on this proposal.
(4) You must not disclose this proposal outside the Government for evaluation purposes except to the extent authorized by, and in accordance with, the procedures in 48 CFR 515.305-71.
Figure 515.3-1.  Conflict of Interest Acknowledgment and Nondisclosure Agreement
Conflict of Interest Acknowledgment and Nondisclosure Agreement
For proposals submitted in response to GSA solicitation no.                                                  , I agree to the following:
(a) To the best of my knowledge and belief, no conflict of interest exists that may either:
(1) Diminish my capacity to impartially review the proposals submitted.
(2) Or result in a biased opinion or unfair advantage.
(b) In making the above statement, I have considered all the following factors that might place me in a position of conflict, real or apparent, with the evaluation proceedings:
(1) All my stocks, bonds, other outstanding financial interests or commitments.
(2) All my employment arrangements (past, present, and under consideration).
(3) As far as I know, all financial interests and employment arrangements of my spouse, minor children, and other members of my immediate household.
(c) I have read and understand the requirements of the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch (5 CFR. part 2635) and Supplemental Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the General Services Administration (5 CFR. part 6701).
(d) I have a continuing obligation to disclose any circumstances that may create an actual or apparent conflict of interest. If I learn of any such conflict, I will report it immediately to the Contracting Officer. I will perform no more duties related to evaluating proposals until I receive instructions on the matter.
(e) I will use proposal information for evaluation purposes only. I understand that any authorized restriction on disclosure placed on the proposal by the prospective contractor, prospective subcontractor, or the Government applies to any reproduction or abstracted information of the proposal.
(f) I will use my best efforts to safeguard proposal information physically. I will not disclose the contents of, nor release any information about, the proposals to anyone other than:
(1) The Source Selection Evaluation Board or other panel assembled to evaluate proposals submitted in response to the solicitation identified above.
(2) Other individuals designated by the Contracting Officer.
(g) After completing evaluation, I will return to the Government all copies of the proposals and any abstracts.
(h) GSA Appropriations Act restriction: These restrictions are consistent with and do not supersede, conflict with, or otherwise alter the employee obligations, rights, or liabilities created by Executive Order No. 12958; section 7211 of title 5, United States Code (governing disclosures to Congress); section 1034 of title 10, United States Code, as amended by the Military Whistleblower Protection Act (governing disclosure to Congress by members of the military); section 2302(b)(8) of title 5, United States Codes, as amended by the Whistleblower Protection Act (governing disclosures of illegality, waste, fraud, abuse or public health or safety threats); the Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 (50 U.S.C. 421 et seq.) (governing disclosures that could expose confidential Government agents); and the statutes which protect against disclosure that may compromise the national security, including sections 641, 793, 794, 798, and 952 of title 18, United States Code, and section 4(b) of the Subversive Activities Act of 1950 (50 U.S.C. 783(b). The definitions, requirements, obligations, rights, sanctions, and liabilities created by said Executive order and listed statutes are incorporated into this agreement and are controlling.
                                                                                                                   
(Enter name of evaluator and organization)
                                                  
Date

(c) Cost or price evaluation—MAS. When evaluating prices under MAS, compare an offeror’s price to GSA with its price to other customers. In this comparison, consider discounts for early payment to the extent provided in 552.232-8, Discounts for Prompt Payment.

(d) Past performance evaluation information:

(1) You must use information from the Past Performance Information Retrieval System (PPIRS) at www.ppirs.gov when evaluating an offeror’s past performance. In addition, you may also obtain information through:

(i) Questionnaires tailored to the circumstances of the acquisition,

(ii) Interviews with program manages and contracting officers, or

(iii) Other sources.

(2) You may obtain information to evaluate an offeror’s past performance on subcontracting plan goals and small disadvantaged business participation, monetary targets, and notifications under FAR 19.1202-4(b) from the following sources:

(i) The Small Business Administration.

(ii) Information on prior contracts from contracting officers and administrative contracting officers.

(iii) Offeror’s references.

(iv) Past performance information collected under FAR 42.15 and available through PPIRS.

515.305-70  Use of outside evaluators.

(a) Conditions. To use outside evaluators, you must meet the restrictions in FAR 37.203 and 537.2.

(b) Limitations on disclosing proposal information. You may disclose proposal information outside the Government before the Government’s decision as to contract award only to the extent authorized in this section. Disclosure and handling must comply with FAR 3.1 and 503.1.

(c) Solicitation notice. Include in the solicitation a notice substantially as follows:

Notice About Releasing Proposals
(1) The Government intends to disclose proposals received in response to this solicitation to nongovernment evaluators.
(2) Each evaluator will sign and provide to GSA a “Conflict of Interest Acknowledgment and Nondisclosure Agreement.”

(d) Relationship to the Freedom of Information Act. Release of a proposal outside the Government for evaluation does not constitute the release of information under the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552).

515.306  Exchanges with offerors after receipt of proposals.

Limit access to Government cost estimates to Government personnel whose official duties require knowledge of the estimate. During negotiations, you may disclose part or all of the Government estimate under FAR 15.306(e) when necessary to arrive at a fair and reasonable price. After award, you may reveal the total amount of the independent Government estimate.

Subpart 515.4—Contract Pricing

515.403  Obtaining cost or pricing data.

515.403-4  Requiring cost or pricing data (10 U.S.C. 2306a and 41 U.S.C. 254b).

To determine if a contract action meets the threshold at FAR 15.403-4 for requesting cost and pricing data, consider the value of the action plus any priced options. Exercise of a priced option is not a price adjustment and does not require submission of cost and pricing data.

515.404-2  Information to support proposal analysis.

(a) “Field pricing assistance” is provided by the Assistant Inspector General-Auditing, or the Regional Inspector General-Auditing, as appropriate.

(b) Follow the procedures in GSA Order, Audit resolution and follow-up system, Ch. 3 (ADM P 2030.2B) for handling contract audit reports.

515.404-4  Profit.

(a) Structured approach for determining profit or fee objectives. Base the analysis of profit factors on information available to the Government before negotiations. Obtain such information from proposals, audit data, performance reports, preaward surveys and the like. The structured approach helps establish a profit objective. It also provides a basis for documenting the objective, including an explanation of any significant departure from this objective in reaching a final agreement. Prepare documentation commensurate with the dollar value and complexity of the proposed procurement.

(b) Exemptions from requirement to use the structured approach.

(1) The following types of procurements are exempt from the structured approach:

(i) Management contracts for operation and/or maintenance of Government facilities.

(ii) Contracts primarily requiring delivery of material supplied by subcontractors.

(iii) Termination settlements.

(iv) Cost-plus-award-fee contracts.

(v) Contracts and contract modifications of $100,000 or less in value.

(vi) Architect-engineer and construction contracts.

(2) You may request exemptions for other contracts having unusual pricing situations where you determine the structured approach is unsuitable. Document your justification in writing. The HCA must approve all such exemptions.

(c) Other methods for exempted procurements. Under exempted procurements, you may use other methods for establishing profit objectives. In general, use methods supported in a manner similar to the structured approach (profit factor breakdown and documentation of profit objective). Exclude factors within the structured approach that do not apply to the procurement.

(d) Profit-analysis factors. Consider the following factors when you negotiate profit. Use the weight ranges listed after each factor when you use the structured approach.

 
Profit Factors
Weight Ranges in Percent
Contractor Effort
Material acquisition
1 to 4
Conversion direct labor
4 to 12
Conversion related indirect cost:
Other costs
General management
 
1 to 3
2 to 5
Other Factors
Contract cost risk
0 to 7
Capital investments
-2 to +2
Federal socioeconomic programs
-.5 to +.5
Cost-control and other past accomplishments
-2 to +2
Independent development and additional factors
-2 to +2

(e) GSA Form 1766. You may use GSA Form 1766, Structured Approach Profit/Fee Objective, to help compute the profit objective. Measure the Contractor Effort by assigning a profit percentage within the designated weight ranges to each element of cost recognized.

(f) Facilities capital cost of money. If you allow facilities capital cost of money as an item of cost, either as a part of your price/cost objective in a firm fixed price type contract or as an allowable cost in a flexibly priced type contract, e.g., cost reimbursement or fixed price incentive type contract, reduce the profit/fee objective as follows. After you develop a dollar profit/fee amount for the requirement, subtract from that aggregate dollar profit/fee amount any dollar amount allowed for facilities capital cost of money. The remainder is the profit/fee objective.

(g) Calculating profit dollars. After computing a total dollar profit for Contractor Effort, calculate the specific profit dollars for the categories under Other Factors. Do this by multiplying the total Government cost objective, excluding any cost of money for facilities capital, by the specific weights assigned to the elements in Other Factors.

(h) Common factors. In determining the value of each factor, consider the definition, description, and purpose of the factors prescribed in FAR 15.404-4(d) and this subsection.

(1) General management. Management problems surface in various degrees. Consider the management expertise exercised to solve them as an element of profit. For example, a new program for an item that involves advanced state of the art techniques may involve more problems and require more managerial time and abilities of a higher order than a follow-on contract. If an initial contract creates more problems and merits a higher profit weight, then a follow-on should merit a downward adjustment, as many of the problems should have been solved. Evaluate the underlying managerial effort involved on a case-by-case basis.

(2) Other costs. Include all other direct costs of contractor performance under this item (e.g., travel and relocation, direct support, and consultants). When you analyze these costs, consider:

(i) Their significance.

(ii) Their nature.

(iii) How much they contribute to contract performance.

(3) Contract cost risk. When you select the proper contract type, the reward for risk by contract type will usually fall into the ranges below.

(i) Cost-reimbursement type contracts. 0–3 percent. A cost-plus-a-fixed-fee contract does not normally justify a reward for risk in excess of 0 percent. Only a contract that contains cost risk features such as ceilings on overhead might merit a higher weight. Such cases may justify up to 1 percent. Cost-plus-incentive-fee contracts fill the remaining portion of the 0 to 3 percent range. For these, assign weightings based on such factors as confidence in target cost, share ratio of fee(s), etc.

(ii) Fixed-price type contracts. 3–7 percent. This weight range is wide enough to accommodate the many types of fixed-price arrangements. Assign weightings based on the cost risk assumed. Only firm fixed-price contracts should reach the top end of the range.

(iii) Subcontracting program. The contractor’s subcontracting program may significantly impact the contractor’s risk under a contract. It could affect risk in terms of both cost and performance. Consider this in selecting a weight for cost risk. The prime contractor may effectively transfer cost risk to a subcontractor. This merits a risk evaluation below the range that would otherwise apply for the contract type proposed. However, you should not evaluate risk lower when a substantial portion of the contract cost represents subcontracts, but without any substantial transfer of contractor’s risk.

(iv) Definitizing letter contracts, unpriced change orders, and unpriced orders under basic ordering agreements. Consider the effect on risk as a result of partial performance before definitization. Some circumstances may effectively reduce the contractor’s total risk, while others may have no effect. Determine an equitable profit weight for all recognized costs, both those incurred and future costs. Consider all attendant circumstances, not just the portion of costs incurred or percentage of work completed before definitization.

(v) Service contracts. Apply a weight range of 0 to 4 percent for cost risk. A firm fixed-price contract, not priced on a labor-hour method, may warrant high consideration for contractor cost risk. It may merit a weight up to 4 percent. Conversely, a cost-plus-fixed-fee service contract normally warrants a zero cost risk factor.

(4) Capital investments. In evaluating this factor for profit weights, consider the following:

(i) Facilities.

(A) To evaluate how this factor contributes to the profit objective, you need to know the level of facilities use needed for contract performance, the source of financing for the facilities, and the overall cost effectiveness of the facilities offered.

(B) Contractors who furnish their own facilities that significantly contribute to lower total contract costs, warrant additional profit. Contractors who rely on the Government to provide or finance facilities warrant less profit. Evaluate situations between the above examples on their merits and make either a positive or negative profit weight adjustment, as appropriate.

(C) You do not need to adjust the profit when a contractor who owns a large quantity of facilities will perform a contract that does not benefit from these facilities, or when a contractor’s use of its facilities has a minimum cost impact on the contract.

(ii) Payments. Consider the frequency of payments by the Government to the contractor. Assess the impact the contract will have on the contractor’s cash flow. Generally, payments more frequent than monthly merit negative consideration, with maximum reduction as the contractor’s working capital approaches zero. Payments less frequent than monthly merit positive consideration, with additional consideration for payments less frequent than the contractor’s or the industry’s normal practice.

515.404-70  Nonprofit organizations.

(a) The structured approach for determining profit or fee objectives was designed for other than nonprofit organizations. However, if modified as below, you may use it to establish fee objectives for nonprofit organizations (See FAR 31.701). Do not apply the modifications as a deduction to historical fee levels. Instead apply them as a reduction in the fee objective calculated under the structured approach.

(b) For contracts with nonprofit organizations, subtract an adjustment of up to 3 percent from the total profit-fee objective. In developing this adjustment, consider each of the following factors:

(1) Tax position benefits.

(2) Granting of financing through letters of credit.

(3) Facility requirements of the nonprofit organization.

(4) Other factors that may work to the advantage or disadvantage of the contractor as a nonprofit organization.

515.405  Price negotiation.

If a contractor insists on a price or demands a profit or fee that you consider unreasonable as outlined in FAR 15.405(d), refer the matter to one level above the contracting officer for resolution.

515.408  Solicitation provisions and contract clauses.

MAS Requests for Information Other Than Cost or Pricing Data

(a) You should use Alternate IV of the FAR provision at 52.215-20, Requirements for Cost or Pricing Data or Information Other Than Cost or Pricing Data, for MAS contracts to provide the format for submission of information other than cost or pricing data for MAS contracts. To provide uniformity in requests under the MAS program, you should insert the following in paragraph (b) of the provision:

(1) An offer prepared and submitted in accordance with the clause at 552.212-70, Preparation of Offer (Multiple Award Schedule).

(2) Commercial sales practices. The Offeror shall submit information in the format provided in this solicitation in accordance with the instructions at Figure 515.4-2 of the GSA Acquisition Regulation (48 CFR 515.4-2), or submit information in the Offeror’s own format.

(3) Any additional supporting information requested by the Contracting Officer. The Contracting Officer may require additional supporting information, but only to the extent necessary to determine whether the price(s) offered is fair and reasonable.

(4) By submission of an offer in response to this solicitation, the Offeror grants the Contracting Officer or an authorized representative the right to examine, at any time before initial award, books, records, documents, papers, and other directly pertinent records to verify the pricing, sales and other data related to the supplies or services proposed in order to determine the reasonableness of price(s). Access does not extend to Offeror’s cost or profit information or other data relevant solely to the Offeror’s determination of the prices to be offered in the catalog or marketplace.

(b) Insert the following format for commercial sales practices in the exhibits or attachments section of the solicitation and resulting contract (see FAR 12.303).

COMMERCIAL SALES PRACTICES FORMAT
Name of Offeror                                                                                                SIN(s)                                                                                      

NOTE: Please refer to Clause 552.212-70, Preparation of Offer (Multiple Award Schedule), for additional information concerning your offer. Provide the following information for each SIN (or group of SINs or SubSIN for which information is the same).

(1) Provide the dollar value of sales to the general public at or based on an established catalog or market price during the previous 12-month period or the offerors last fiscal year: $                         . State beginning and ending of the 12 month period. Beginning                           ending                          . In the event that a dollar value is not an appropriate measure of the sales, provide and describe your own measure of the sales of the item(s).
(2) Show your total projected annual sales to the Government under this contract for the contract term, excluding options, for each SIN offered. If you currently hold a Federal Supply Schedule contract for the SIN the total projected annual sales should be based on your most recent 12 months of sales under that contract.

SIN                                                                                   $                                                                           

SIN                                                                                   $                                                                           

SIN                                                                                   $                                                                           

(3) Based on your written discounting policies (standard commercial sales practices in the event you do not have written discounting policies), are the discounts and any concessions which you offer the Government equal to or better than your best price (discount and concessions in any combination) offered to any customer acquiring the same items regardless of quantity or terms and conditions? YES       NO       (See definition of “concession” and “discount” in 552.212-70.)
(4) 
(a) Based on your written discounting policies (standard commercial sales practices in the event you do not have written discounting policies), provide information as requested for each SIN (or group of SINs for which the information is the same) in accordance with the instructions at Figure 515.4-2, which is provided in this solicitation for your convenience. The information should be provided in the chart below or in an equivalent format developed by the offeror. Rows should be added to accommodate as many customers as required.
Column 1
Customer
Column 2
Discount
Column 3
Quantity/Volume
Column 4
FOB Term
Column 5
Concessions
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
(b) Do any deviations from your written policies or standard commercial sales practices disclosed in the above chart ever result in better discounts (lower prices) or concessions than indicated? YES       NO      . If YES, explain deviations in accordance with the instructions at Figure 515.4-2, which is provided in this solicitation for your convenience.
(5) If you are a dealer/reseller without significant sales to the general public, you should provide manufacturers’ information required by paragraphs (1) through (4) above for each item/SIN offered, if the manufacturer’s sales under any resulting contract are expected to exceed $500,000. You must also obtain written authorization from the manufacturer(s) for Government access, at any time before award or before agreeing to a modification, to the manufacturer’s sales records for the purpose of verifying the information submitted by the manufacturer. The information is required in order to enable the Government to make a determination that the offered price is fair and reasonable. To expedite the review and processing of offers, you should advise the manufacturer(s) of this requirement. The contracting officer may require the information be submitted on electronic media with commercially available spreadsheet(s). The information may be provided by the manufacturer directly to the Government. If the manufacturer’s item(s) is being offered by multiple dealers/resellers, only one copy of the requested information should be submitted to the Government. In addition, you must submit the following information along with a listing of contact information regarding each of the manufacturers whose products and/or services are included in the offer (include the manufacturer’s name, address, the manufacturer’s contact point, telephone number, and FAX number) for each model offered by SIN:
(a) Manufacturer’s Name.
(b) Manufacturer’s Part Number.
(c) Dealer’s/Reseller’s Part Number.
(d) Product Description.
(e) Manufacturer’s List Price.
(f) Dealer’s/Reseller’s percentage discount from list price or net prices.
(End of Format)

(c) Include the instructions for completing the commercial sales practices format in Figure 515.4-2 in solicitations issued under the MAS program.

Figure 515.4-2.  Instructions for Commercial Sales Practices Format 
If you responded “YES” to question (3), on the COMMERCIAL SALES PRACTICES FORMAT, complete the chart in question (4)(a) for the customer(s) who receive your best discount. If you responded “NO”, complete the chart in question (4)(a) showing your written policies or standard sales practices for all customers or customer categories to whom you sell at a price (discounts and concessions in combination) that is equal to or better than the price(s) offered to the Government under this solicitation or with which the Offeror has a current agreement to sell at a discount which equals or exceeds the discount(s) offered under this solicitation. Such agreement shall be in effect on the date the offer is submitted or contain an effective date during the proposed multiple award schedule contract period. If your offer is lower than your price to other customers or customer categories, you will be aligned with the customer or category of customer that receives your best price for purposes of the Price Reductions clause at 552.238-75. The Government expects you to provide information required by the format in accordance with these instructions that is, to the best of your knowledge and belief, current, accurate, and complete as of 14 calendar days prior to its submission. You must also disclose any changes in your price list(s), discounts and/or discounting policies which occur after the offer is submitted, but before the close of negotiations. If your discount practices vary by model or product line, the discount information should be by model or product line as appropriate. You may limit the number of models or product lines reported to those which exceed 75% of actual historical Government sales (commercial sales may be substituted if Government sales are unavailable) value of the special item number (SIN).
Column 1—Identify the applicable customer or category of customer.
A “customer” is any entity, except the Federal Government, which acquires supplies or services from the Offeror. The term customer includes, but is not limited to original equipment manufacturers, value added resellers, state and local Governments, distributors, educational institutions (an elementary, junior high, or degree granting school which maintains a regular faculty and established curriculum and an organized body of students), dealers, national accounts, and end users. In any instance where the Offeror is asked to disclose information for a customer, the Offeror may disclose information by category of customer if the Offeror’s discount policies or practices are the same for all customers in the category. (Use a separate line for each customer or category of customer.)
Column 2—Identify the discount.
The term “discount” is as defined in solicitation clause 552.212-70, Preparation of Offer (Multiple Award Schedule). Indicate the best discount (based on your written discounting policies or standard commercial discounting practices if you do not have written discounting policies) at which you sell to the customer or category of customer identified in column 1, without regard to quantity; terms and conditions of the agreements under which the discounts are given; and whether the agreements are written or oral. Net prices or discounts off of other price lists should be expressed as percentage discounts from the price list which is the basis of your offer. If the discount disclosed is a combination of various discounts (prompt payment, quantity, etc.), the percentage should be broken out for each type of discount. If the price lists which are the basis of the discounts given to the customers identified in the chart are different than the price list submitted upon which your offer is based, identify the type or title and date of each price list.
The contracting officer may require submission of these price lists. To expedite evaluation, offerors may provide these price lists at the time of submission.
Column 3—Identify the quantity or volume of sales.
Insert the minimum quantity or sales volume which the identified customer or category of customer must either purchase/order, per order or within a specified period, to earn the discount. When purchases/orders must be placed within a specified period to earn a discount indicate the time period.
Column 4—Indicate the FOB delivery term for each identified customer.
See FAR 47.3 for an explanation of FOB delivery terms.
Column 5—Indicate concessions regardless of quantity granted to the identified customer or category of customer.
Concessions are defined in solicitation clause 552.212-70, Preparation of Offers (Multiple Award Schedule). If the space provided is inadequate, the disclosure should be made on a separate sheet by reference.
If you respond “YES” to question 4(b) in the Commercial Sales Practices Format, provide an explanation of the circumstances under which you deviate from your written policies or standard commercial sales practices disclosed in the chart on the Commercial Sales Practices Format and explain how often they occur. Your explanation should include a discussion of situations that lead to deviations from standard practice, an explanation of how often they occur, and the controls you employ to assure the integrity of your pricing. Examples of typical deviations may include, but are not limited to, one time goodwill discounts to charity organizations or to compensate an otherwise disgruntled customer; a limited sale of obsolete or damaged goods; the sale of sample goods to a new customer; or the sales of prototype goods for testing purposes.
If deviations from your written policies or standard commercial sales practices disclosed in the chart on the Commercial Sales Practices Format are so significant and/or frequent that the Contracting Officer cannot establish whether the price(s) offered is fair and reasonable, then you may be asked to provide additional information. The Contracting Officer may ask for information to demonstrate that you have made substantial sales of the item(s) in the commercial market consistent with the information reflected on the chart on the Commercial Sales Practices Format, a description of the conditions surrounding those sales deviations, or other information that may be necessary in order for the Contracting Officer to determine whether your offered price(s) is fair and reasonable. In cases where additional information is requested, the Contracting Officer will target the request in order to limit the submission of data to that needed to establish the reasonableness of the offered price.
(End of Figure)

(d) Insert the clause at 552.212-72, Price Adjustment—Failure to Provide Accurate Information, in solicitations and contracts under the MAS program.

(e) You should use Alternate IV of FAR 52.215-21, Requirements for Cost or Pricing Data or Information Other Than Cost or Pricing Data—Modifications, to provide for submission of information other than cost or pricing data for MAS contracts. To provide for uniformity in requests under the MAS program, you should insert the following in paragraph (b) of the clause:

(1) Information required by the clause at 552.243-72, Modifications (Multiple Award Schedule).

(2) Any additional supporting information requested by the Contracting Officer. The Contracting Officer may require additional supporting information, but only to the extent necessary to determine whether the price(s) offered is fair and reasonable.

(3) By submitting a request for modification, the Contractor grants the Contracting Officer or an authorized representative the right to examine, at any time before agreeing to a modification, books, records, documents, papers, and other directly pertinent records to verify the pricing, sales and other data related to the supplies or services proposed in order to determine the reasonableness of price(s). Access does not extend to Contractor’s cost or profit information or other data relevant solely to the Contractor’s determination of the prices to be offered in the catalog or marketplace.

Subpart 515.5—Preaward, Award, and Postaward Notifications, Protests, and Mistakes

515.506  Postaward debriefing of offerors.

For purposes of determining the date of receipt of a request for a postaward debriefing, GSA’s hours of operation are 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Requests received after 4:30 p.m. will be considered received the following business day.

515.570  Release of information concerning unsuccessful offerors.

Consult FAR 24.2, 41 CFR part 105-60, and GSA Freedom of Information Act procedures at http://www.gsa.gov/staff/c/ca/FOIA/FoiaProc/mainpage.html. to determine what information you may disclose.

Subpart 515.6—Unsolicited Proposals

515.601  Definitions.

“Coordinating office,” as used in this subpart, means:

(a) The Senior Procurement Executive for all Central Office activities.

(b) The office designated in writing by the Regional Administrator in the Regions.

515.606  Agency procedures.

Coordinating offices serve as agency points of contact and establish procedures for controlling the receipt, evaluation, and timely disposition of proposals consistent with FAR 15.6.

515.606-2  Evaluation.

Complete the evaluation as soon as practicable, normally within 45 calendar days. Communicate the results of the evaluation to the submitter.

515.609  Limited use of data.

When you release an unsolicited proposal for evaluation, use the “Conflict of Interest Acknowledgment and Nondisclosure Agreement” in Figure 515.3-1.

Subpart 515.70—Use of Bid Samples

515.7000  General.

Except as provided in 515.7002 and 515.7003, the policy and procedures in FAR 14.202-4 and 514.202-4 apply to negotiated acquisitions. When referring to FAR 14.202-4 and 514.202-4, the term “bid” means “offer” or “proposal.” The terms “bidder” and “invitation” or “invitation for bids” are used synonymously with “offeror” and “solicitation” or “RFP”.

515.7001  Policy.

(a) The terms “responsiveness” and “nonresponsive” do not apply to negotiated acquisitions. FAR 14.202-4(b)(2) and (4) do not apply to the use of bid samples under this subpart.

(b) Instead of FAR 14.202-4(b)(2) and (4), apply the following:

(1) Use bid samples in the technical evaluation of proposals to both:

(i) Determine the acceptability of the samples to meet GSA’s requirement.

(ii) Ensure compliance with all subjective and objective characteristics listed in the solicitation.

(2) If you conduct written or oral discussions, you may exclude a proposal from further consideration for award only if you meet all the following conditions:

(i) You discussed with the offeror any deficiencies found in the samples.

(ii) You gave the offeror an opportunity to correct those deficiencies.

(iii) The sample still fails to conform to each of the characteristics listed in the solicitation. (See FAR 15.609 and 15.610).

515.7002  Procedures.

(a) Unsolicited samples. The reference to FAR 14.404-2(d) in FAR 14.202-4(g) does not apply. Use the following when contracting by negotiation:

“However, qualifications in the proposal that are at variance with the Government’s requirements, constitute deficiencies. Resolve these as provided in FAR 15.306."

(b) Solicitation requirements.

(1) Use the clause at FAR 52.214-20. The second sentence in paragraph (c) of the clause does not apply. Substitute a sentence substantially as follows:

“Failure of the bid samples to conform to all the required characteristics listed in the solicitation constitutes a deficiency in the proposal (see FAR 15.306).”

(2) In addition to listing subjective characteristics that you cannot adequately describe in the specification, you may list and evaluate objective characteristics. To include objective characteristics, you must determine that examination of such characteristics is essential to the acquisition of an acceptable product. Base your determination on past experience or other valid considerations.

(c) FAR 52.215-1(c)(3) applies to samples received after the time set for receipt of offers.


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