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GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION ACQUISITION MANUAL (GSAM)


Part 507—Acquisition Planning

Subpart 507.1—Acquisition Plans

507.101  Definitions.

“Planner” means the person residing in the requirements office who initiates, coordinates and prepares written acquisition plans. The person may be in an individual program office or have responsibility for a number of such offices.

“Planning team” means a team of individuals formed to prepare individual elements of an acquisition plan. The team should be comprised of technical and professional representatives from the requirements customer, contracting, budget, counsel, small business technical advisors (SBTA), and other offices as warranted.

“Requirements office” means the internal GSA office that establishes and funds the agency need. If an organization outside of GSA establishes and funds the need, then the requirements office will be the GSA office that is managing the acquisition for that outside organization.

507.103  Agency-head responsibilities.

The HCA must ensure that the planning team adheres to the requirements of FAR Part 7, Acquisition Planning.

507.104  General procedures.

(a) The planner shall:

(1) Comply with the requirements of FAR Subpart 7.1, and coordinate with other members of the planning team as appropriate.

(2) Write the acquisition plan using all planning team members especially for complex or highly sensitive acquisitions.

(3) Review the acquisition history of the supplies and services.

(4) Review the description of the supplies, including (when necessary for adequate description) a picture, drawing, diagram, or other graphic representation.

(5) Coordinate with the Small Business Technical Advisor (SBTA) as necessary to fulfill the requirements of FAR 7.104(d)(1).

(6) Coordinate with local representatives of the Office of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) if the action involves IT services or supplies for use by GSA to ensure compliance with the requirements of GSA Order CIO 2135.1, GSA Information Technology (IT) Capital Planning and Investment Control (not required for establishing a Federal Supply Schedule program).

(7) Obtain concurrence of the contracting officer, and approvals as required in paragraph 507.105(c)(1).

(8) Coordinate with the Office of General Counsel on an as needed basis, but definitely for plans over $20 million.

(9) Ensure that an interagency agreement is in place in all agency specific clauses, terms and conditions are incorporated in the acquisition, when conducting purchases on behalf of other agencies.

(b) The contracting officer shall:

(1) Ensure that acquisition planning and market research are performed for all acquisitions.

(2) Ensure that the contract file contains a copy of the approved acquisition plan.

(c) Applicability. With the following exceptions, all acquisitions, including orders and BPAs, require written acquisition plans.

(1) When awarding a single IDIQ contract or a BPA for a specific requirement and agency, an acquisition plan will be developed for the base contract. The resulting orders should be covered by and reference the same acquisition plan.

(2) Oral plans.

(d) The planner is encouraged to use the Acquisition Planning Wizard (APW) (found at http://apw.gsa.gov), or any successor system, for all acquisitions exceeding the SAT. Not later than 7 calendar days after the acquisition plan is approved, if not completed in APW, an electronic copy shall be sent to acquisitionplans@gsa.gov.

507.105  Contents of acquisition plans.

(a) Written.

(1) The APW contains the format prescribed in FAR 7.105 and shall be used in the preparation of acquisition plans. Where a particular element described in FAR 7.105 does not apply, the acquisition plan should read “not applicable.” The dollar value, complexity (e.g., commercial versus non-commercial item) and method of acquisition (e.g., full and open competition versus task/delivery order) of the supplies and services to be acquired will affect the scope and breadth of the acquisition plan.

(2) FAR 7.106 (major systems) and FAR 7.107 (bundling) shall be addressed in the plans, if applicable.

(3) For leasehold interests in real property, a modified version of the contents of acquisition plans for leases is provided in the APW.

(4) The requirement for a written plan may be waived by the appropriate level of an approving official listed in GSAM 507.105(c). When the requirement for a written plan is waived, an oral plan is still required. The planner must obtain approval for the oral plan from the approving official.

(b) Oral plans. Oral plans are only authorized by approval of the HCA and may be used in unusual and compelling situations. The planner shall document a summary of the oral plan, and shall also include: the name and signature of the approving official; the date the oral plan was approved; and the reason for waiving a written plan. The summary shall be included in the official contract file. In addition, the summary should be a part of, or attached to, any justification for other than full and open competition as required by FAR 6.302, or in the basis for using an exception to the fair opportunity process required by FAR 16.505(b)(2). The summary may be prepared after award if preparation before award would unreasonably delay the award, such as in the case of circumstances warranting the use of a letter contract.

(c) Approval thresholds.

(1) The following are the dollar value thresholds and the level of the approving official for approving acquisition plans or waiving written plans. For purposes of leasing, the Simplified Leasing Acquisition Threshold (SLAT) is defined in Part 570. The HCA may authorize higher level approving officials for the thresholds set out below.

Threshold
Approving Official
Below the SAT
( SLAT for leases)
Contracting Officer
SAT (SLAT for leases) to,
and including, $5.5 million
One Level above the Contracting Officer
Over $5.5 million to,
and including, $20 million
Contracting Director
Over $20 million to, and including, $50 million
Regional Commissioner or Deputy Regional Commissioner
Over $50 million
HCA

Note: Thresholds shall include all options.

(2) If the acquisition meets one of the following criteria and is greater than the SAT, the planner must obtain HCA approval of the plan:

(a) Complex, critical to agency strategic objectives and mission, highly visible or politically sensitive.

(b) An acquisition with which GSA has little or no experience that may result in a need for greater oversight or risk management.

(c) Actions using significantly changed methods (e.g., methods of procurement such as lease versus purchase, or methods of performance such as contractor versus Government personnel).

(d) New construction or repair, lease prospectus and alteration prospectus budget line items.

(e) Any acquisition that requires contract bundling (FAR 7.107).

Subpart 507.5—Inherently Governmental Functions

507.503  Policy.

(a) Concurrent with the transmittal of each statement of work or any modification to a statement of work for a service contract, the requirements office must provide the contracting officer a written determination that none of the functions to be performed are inherently governmental as defined in FAR 7.5. The determination must include a statement that the requirement is not for functions similar to those listed under FAR 7.503(c).

(b) The requirements office must also review the examples of functions listed under paragraph (d) of FAR 7.503. While these functions are not inherently governmental, they may restrict the discretionary authority, decision-making responsibility, or accountability of Government officials using the contractor services or work products. If the services to be acquired may cause such restrictions, the acquisition plan must discuss the associated vulnerabilities, and address management controls to mitigate them.

(1) These measures may include requiring special controls and safeguards to prevent improper personal services relationships, contractor personnel access to privileged or sensitive information, and/or confusion regarding the mistaking of contractor employees for Federal employees.

(2) The requirements office is directed to use FAR 37.104 and 37.5 and OFPP Policy Letter 93-1 for guidance in addressing these considerations.

(3) The HCA resolves any disagreement regarding the requirements official’s determination, following the guidelines in FAR 7.5. The HCA may delegate this authority to a level not lower than the contracting director.

Subpart 507.70—Additional Requirements for Purchases in Support of National Security Systems

507.7000  Scope of subpart.

This subpart prescribes acquisition policies and procedures for use in acquiring information technology supplies, services and systems in support of a weapon system as part of a national security system, as defined by FAR 39.002.

507.7001  Policy.

(a) Although GSA’s mission does not include the direct acquisition of weapon systems on behalf of the Department of Defense (DoD), GSA contracting activities may procure information technology supplies, services and systems in support of a weapon system, which is part of a national security system (e.g., components, services to install and maintain weapon systems, ancillary items and services) when responding to a bona-fide requirement received from a requiring agency or program office.

(b) Contracting Officers shall ensure that all requiring agency regulations and the policies and directives of The Committee on National Security Systems at www.cnss.gov are conducted during the acquisition planning stage and are met before acquiring information technology supplies, services and systems in support of a weapon system as part of a national security system.

(c) Employees responsible for or procuring information technology supplies, services and systems in support of a weapon system shall possess the appropriate security clearance associated with the level of security classification related to the acquisition. They include, but are not limited to contracting officers, contract specialists, project/program managers, and contracting officer representatives.


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