- April 26, 2022 -
UPCOMING EVENTS
4/26/22
Doing Business with the National Park Service – Webinar
Webinar

4/27/22
Don’t be Victimized by Ransomware – Virtual
Webinar
5/3-6/22
Wisconsin Lt. Governor’s 2022 Small Business Academy
Webinar

5/6/22
Cyber Friday: Understanding DOD Basic Assessment and Measuring a Company’s Efforts to Secure Sensitive (CUI) Data
Webinar
MYTH BUSTERS
MYTH:
Since a Sources Sought is not an actual bid or proposal solicitation – it is NOT worth your time to respond.

REALITY: 
A Sources Sought Notice (SSN) is used by the federal government to identify potential sources, especially small businesses, who have the interest and the resources to support a particular agency requirement. It is an investment of time and resources to respond BUT can have a significant Return on Investment (ROI) in that it actually may influence how a federal agency “packages” any eventual solicitation. Our recommendation is that if the opportunity COULD be a good fit to your business, that you respond. We also recommend that your response be specific and include the information actually requested in the Sources Sought. Unless requested, DO NOT send your general marketing piece – be specific.
 
Benefits in responding include:
  • Potential set-aside of requirement (limiting competition to only a few firms in your small business category) or a sole-source award (if your capabilities and expertise are unmatched by others)
  • Impacting the shape of the scope of the future solicitation
  • Ability to offer alternatives or additional information
 
Need help with responding to a Sources Sought Notice or want to learn more about how to successfully leverage SSN in your Federal marketing strategy? Contact Carol Murphy at CarolM2@wispro.org or call 414-270-3600.
NEWS & UPDATES
ORGANIZATIONAL CONFLICT OF INTEREST

Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Part 2 provides a definition of Organizational Conflict of Interest. Organizational conflict of interest means that because of other activities or relationships with other persons, a person is unable or potentially unable to render impartial assistance or advise to the Government, or the person’s objectivity in performing the contract work is or might be otherwise impaired, or a person has an unfair competitive advantage. 

Organizational Conflicts of Interest generally fall into one of three categories. Unequal Access to Information – a contractor has access to non-public information which would provide a competitive advantage for a different contract. Impaired Objectivity – Work on one government contract creates a situation where it benefits other government contracts. Biased Ground Rules – When a contractor helped set up ground rules and then competes for the contract.

If an organizational conflict of interest does exist, it can lead to the contractor being excluded from a contract competition, having an existing contract terminated, and, in some cases, it can even lead to suspension or debarment. Therefore, it is imperative that contractors avoid actual or apparent conflicts of interest. Additional guidance can be found in FAR Part 9.5.

If you need assistance on this topic, please contact Carol Murphy at carolm2@wispro.org or 414-270-3600.
Provide input regarding the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2022

DoD is providing an opportunity for the public to provide early inputs on implementation of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 within the acquisition regulations. Submit early inputs via the DARS website at https://www.acq.osd.mil/​dpap/​dars/​early_​engagement.html.
Send inquiries via email to osd.dfars@mail.mil and reference “Early Engagement Opportunity: Implementation of NDAA for FY 2022” in the subject line. 
Acquisition Regulations; Buy Indian Act; Procedures for Contracting

This final rule revises the Department of the Interior's regulations implementing the Buy Indian Act, which provides the Department of Interior (DOI) with authority to set aside procurement contracts for Indian-owned and controlled businesses. This rule is effective May 9, 2022

If you need assistance on this topic, please contact Ben Blanc at benjaminb@wispro.org or 414-270-3600.
A new challenge to automate one of the most tedious jobs in government

A lot of the data that the government produces needs to be rated; safe to distribute, controlled but unclassified, or maybe secret and classified. That’s simplifying this huge but never-ending task. Now the Defense Department has launched a challenge prize program to develop an artificial intelligence approach to automating some of this tedious task. Federal Drive with Tom Temin got the details from Doris Tung, the acquisition division manager in the Philadelphia division of the Naval Surface Warfare Center.
TRENDS affecting government and society – a GAO REPORT

Through environmental scanning and analysis, GAO has identified 12 key trends the agency anticipates will affect the domestic and global context for years to come. To identify these 12 trends that reflect the breadth and scope of GAO’s work across the federal government, GAO’s subject matter experts conducted research across a range of domains. These observations point to the uncertainties and implications of various trends over the near term (five years) and longer term (10-15 years). The trends are not designed to predict the future; rather they help GAO and our stakeholders understand possible implications.

With these 12 trends, GAO’s Center for Strategic Foresight aims to ensure that GAO is prepared to assist the Congress as it addresses evolving challenges and seeks innovative solutions. GAO will continue producing work that elaborates on the trends through the span of our 2022- 2027 Strategic Plan. The Center for Strategic Foresight will maintain focus on its ongoing environmental scanning systems and trend analysis capabilities, to ensure that GAO remains agile and responsive in its mission to serve Congress and the American people.
Equity Action Plan Summary U.S. Department of Defense

The Department of Defense said it also plans to expand contracting with small businesses from underserved communities. In its equity action plan summary, the department highlighted complex compliance requirements and unclear communication as roadblocks to those businesses entering federal contracts.
Supply chain assessment identifies 200,000 products ‘of concern’ in fed marketplace

The General Services Administration has identified about 200,000 products “of concern” over the past year through a supply chain risk assessment aimed at unearthing threats in the millions of products GSA offers to agencies through its marketplace.
GSA analyzed the top 20% of companies who supply 80% of the products the agency offers across the federal government, according to Sonny Hashmi, commissioner of GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service. The agency then segmented the products into high-risk categories, like industrial control systems, HVAC systems, and security cameras, Hashmi said during an April 7 event hosted by Bloomberg Government.
GSA Launches AI Challenge Inspired by Pandemic Needs

The General Services Administration is looking for contractors to build out federal AI tech in response to COVID-19.

The General Services Administration is hosting an opportunity for private firms and academic institutions to gain knowledge and explore new use cases around artificial intelligence technology to help combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Initial Implementation Guidance on Application of Buy America Preference in Federal Financial Assistance Programs for Infrastructure  

On November 15, 2021, President Biden signed into law the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (“IIJA”), Pub. L. No. 117-58, which includes the Build America, Buy America Act (“the Act”). Pub. L. No. 117-58, §§ 70901-52. The Act strengthens Made in America Laws1 and will bolster America’s industrial base, protect national security, and support high-paying jobs. The Act requires that no later than May 14, 2022—180 days after the enactment of the IIJA—the head of each covered Federal agency shall ensure that “none of the funds made available for a Federal financial assistance program for infrastructure, including each deficient program, may be obligated for a project unless all of the iron, steel, manufactured products, and construction materials used in the project are produced in the United States.”
DOD Aims to Close Gap in Bringing U.S. Tech Innovation to Market

The United States today is responsible for only about 12% of microelectronics production globally, with most production now in Asia. The U.S. also lacks much of the capacity to confirm the viability and marketability of new microelectronics technologies so that American industry might be convinced to invest in them. 
FACT SHEET: Biden-⁠Harris Administration Announces the Rural Partners Network to Empower Rural Communities to Access Federal Resources

President Biden is committed to ensuring federal resources and opportunities that can benefit rural America actually reach rural America. Today, the Biden-Harris Administration is launching the Rural Partners Network (RPN), a new whole-of-government effort led by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to transform the way federal agencies partner with rural places to create economic opportunity.
FEATURED EVENTS
For Department of Defense Contractors and Subcontractors: Join Marc Violante, WPI’s Director, Federal Market Strategies for the Cyber Friday series starting at 11:00am – a series of one hour webinars focusing on critical topics in cyber security, data security, and CMMC.

8th Annual DOD Contract Management Update
 
May 17, 2022
7:15 am - 4:00 pm CST | In-Person
 
The Government and Defense contractors are facing increasing challenges – supply shortages, cost escalation, labor shortages, new requirements, and security challenges to name a few. This year’s event will focus on gaining a better understanding of the current supply chain dynamics, current impacts, and requirements. Our attention will then shift to focus on solutions, new initiatives, and upcoming opportunities – how the government and current contractors and subcontractors are meeting these challenges supporting the Defense Industrial Base.
 
This year’s speakers will include:
  • Lieutenant Colonel Susan M. Styer, Commander, Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA) Milwaukee
  • TSgt. James Pitcher, Contracting Officer, 21st Contracting Squadron
  • Col. Robert J. (Jay) Wisham, Director, Army Applications Laboratory
  • Arthur Trevethan, Director, Corporate Ventures, Army Applications Laboratory
  • Carley Salmon, Cybersecurity Assessor, Defense Industrial Base Cybersecurity Assessment Center (DIBCAC), DCMA
  • Karen Zinn, Supervisor, Central Team, DCMA Contractor Purchasing System Review Group
  • Joel Neidig, President & Co-founder, SIMBA Chain
  • Pete Guinto, Vice President of Government Affairs, Resilinc
  • Jim Robinson, President and CEO, Wisconsin Ordnance Works, Ltd.
  • Sean Ketter, Vice President, Supply Chain Operations, Global Procurement & Supply Chain, Oshkosh Corporation
  • Nathaniel T. Millsap, Jr., Director, Security & Cyber, Fincantieri Marinette Marine
  • Megan McKinney, Business Development, Beacon Interactive Systems
  • Jason Rathsack, Senior Contract Specialist, DCMA Central Region
  • Joseph Jackson, Branch Chief, Tactical/ Multi-Site Support and Systems, U.S. Army Contracting Command-Detroit
  • Aina Vilumsons, CEO, Wisconsin Procurement Institute (WPI)

Dress: business casual.

For Out-of-town Attendees: the event venue LaSure’s is adjacent to Cobblestone Hotels, 3105 S Washburn St, Oshkosh, WI 54904.
Upcoming WPI Office Hours
Click date to schedule an appointment or request more information
OTHER NEWS
  • Be sure to follow WPI on social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter) for regular updates on events, news and opportunities.
  • APPLY NOW: 'Build to Scale' Funding Opportunity Launches Today Read more
  • Wisconsin Fast Forward Grants - NEW APPLICATION DEADLINE: 3 PM APRIL 29, 2022 Read more
  • ESGR Breakfast with the Boss announced for May 16, 2022 Read more
WPI 10437 Innovation Dr. Suite 320, Milwaukee, WI 53226 414-270-3600
Newsletter Editor: Doug Clemons, dougc@wispro.org