[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 188 (Thursday, September 28, 2006)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 57362-57363]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 06-8203]





48 CFR Parts 4, 12, 14, and 15

[FAC 2005-13; FAR Case 2005-025; Item III; Docket 2006-0020, Sequence 
RIN 9000-AK56

Federal Acquisition Regulation; FAR Case 2005-025, Online 
Representations and Certifications Application (ORCA) Archiving 

AGENCIES: Department of Defense (DoD), General Services Administration 
(GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

ACTION: Interim rule with request for comments.


SUMMARY: The Civilian Agency Acquisition Council and the Defense 
Acquisition Regulations Council (Councils) have agreed on an interim 
rule amending the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to address the 
record retention policy where the Online Representations and 
Certifications Application (ORCA) is used to submit an offeror's 
representations and certification.

DATES: Effective Date: September 28, 2006.
    Comment Date: Interested parties should submit written comments to 
the FAR Secretariat on or before November 27, 2006 to be considered in 
the formulation of a final rule.

ADDRESSES: Submit comments identified by FAC 2005-13, FAR case 2005-
025, by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Search for this document at the ``Federal Acquisition Regulation'' 
agency and review the ``Document Title'' column; click on the Document 
ID number. Click on ``Add Comments''.
    You may also search for any document using the ``Advanced search/
document search'' tab, selecting from the agency field ``Federal 
Acquisition Regulation'', and typing the FAR case number in the keyword 
     Fax: 202-501-4067.
     Mail: General Services Administration, Regulatory 
Secretariat (VIR), 1800 F Street, NW, Room 4035, ATTN: Laurieann 
Duarte, Washington, DC 20405.
    Instructions: Please submit comments only and citeFAC 2005-13, FAR 
case 2005-025, in all correspondence related to this case. All comments 
received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, 
including any personal and/or business confidential information 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For clarification of content, contact 
Mr. Ernest Woodson, Procurement Analyst, at (202) 501-3775. The TTY 
Federal Relay Number for further information is 1-800-877-8973. Please 
cite FAC 2005-13, FAR case 2005-025. For information pertaining to 
status or publication schedules, contact the FAR Secretariat at (202) 


A. Background

    Under FAR Subpart 4.12 prospective contractors are required to 
submit Annual Representations and Certifications via the Online 
Representations and Certifications Application (ORCA), a part of the 
Business Partner Network. Using ORCA eliminates the administrative 
burden for contractors of submitting the same information to various 
contracting offices, and establishes a common source for this 
information to procurement offices throughout the Government.
    FAR 4.803(a)(11) requires contracting officers to include 
contractor representations and certifications in the contract file. 
Given ORCA's capability to archive a contractor's representations and 
certifications by date, contracting officers no longer need to file a 
paper copy of a contractor's representations and certifications in the 
contracting office contract files, but should incorporate archived ORCA 
records by reference, along with any changes submitted in the FAR 
provisions at 52.204-8 or 52.212-3, in the contract file to satisfy the 
contract file documentation requirements.
    This is not a significant regulatory action and, therefore, was not 
subject to review under Section 6(b) of Executive Order 12866, 
Regulatory Planning and Review, dated September 30, 1993. This rule is 
not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804.

B. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The interim rule is not expected to have a significant economic 
impact on a substantial number of small entities within the meaning of 
the Regulatory Flexibility Act,5 U.S.C. 601, et seq., because 
management of the contract file is not accomplished by the vendor 
community, only by government contracting entities. Therefore, an 
Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis has not been performed. The 
Councils will consider comments from small entities concerning the 
affected FAR Parts 4, 12, 14, and 15 in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 610. 
Interested parties must submit such comments separately and should cite 
5 U.S.C 601, et seq. (FAC 2005-13, FAR case 2005-025), in 

C. Paperwork Reduction Act

    The Paperwork Reduction Act does not apply because the changes to 
the FAR do not impose information collection requirements that require 
the approval of the Office of Management and Budget under 44 U.S.C. 
3501, et seq.

D. Determination to Issue an Interim Rule

    A determination has been made under the authority of the Secretary 
of Defense (DoD), the Administrator of General Services (GSA), and the 
Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration 
(NASA) that urgent and compelling reasons exist to promulgate this 
interim rule without prior opportunity for public comment. This action 
is necessary because the rule addresses policy regarding the filing of 
proper documentation in the contract file by the contracting officer, 
which is internal to the Government, and not accomplished by the vendor 
community. However, pursuant to Public Law 98-577 and FAR 1.501, the 
Councils will consider public comments received in response to this 
interim rule in the formation of the final rule.

List of Subjects in 48 CFR Parts 4, 12, 14, and 15

    Government procurement.

[[Page 57363]]

    Dated: September 19, 2006.
Ralph De Stefano,
Director, Contract Policy Division.

Therefore, DoD, GSA, and NASA amend 48 CFR parts 4, 12, 14, and 15 as 
set forth below:
1. The authority citation for 48 CFR parts 4, 12, 14, and 15 continues 
to read as follows:

    Authority: 40 U.S.C. 121(c); 10 U.S.C. chapter 137; and 42 
U.S.C. 2473(c).


2. Amend section 4.803 by revising paragraph (a)(11) to read as 

4.803  Contents of contract files.

* * * * *
    (a) * * *
    (11) Contractor's representations and certifications (see 
* * * * *
3. Amend section 4.1201 by adding paragraph (c) to read as follows:

4.1201  Policy.

* * * * *
    (c) Data in ORCA is archived and is electronically retrievable. 
Therefore, when a prospective contractor has completed representations 
and certifications electronically via ORCA, the contracting officer may 
reference the date of ORCA verification in the associated Government 
contract file, rather than including a paper copy of the 
electronically-submitted representations and certifications in the 
file. Such a reference satisfies contract file documentation 
requirements of 4.803(a)(11). However, if an offeror identifies changes 
to ORCA data pursuant to the FAR provisions at 52.204-8(c) or 52.212-
3(k), the contracting officer must include a copy of the changes in the 
contract file.


4. Amend section 12.301 by revising the first sentence of paragraph 
(b)(2) to read as follows:

12.301  Solicitation provisions and contract clauses for the 
acquisition of commercial items.

* * * * *
    (b)(2) * * * This provision provides a single, consolidated list of 
representations and certifications for the acquisition of commercial 
items and is attached to the solicitation for offerors to complete. * * 
* * * * *


5. Amend section 14.201-1 by adding to paragraph (c) a parenthetical 
following the third sentence to read as follows:

14.201-1  Uniform contract format.

* * * * *
    (c) * * * (See 4.1201(c).) * * *
* * * * *


6. Amend section 15.102 by revising the second sentence of paragraph 
(b) to read as follows:

15.102  Oral presentations.

* * * * *
    (b) * * * However, representations and certifications shall be 
submitted as required in the FAR provisions at 52.204-8(c) or 52.212-
3(k), and a signed offer sheet (including any exceptions to the 
Government's terms and conditions) shall be submitted in writing.
* * * * *
7. Amend section 15.204-1 by adding to paragraph (b) a parenthetical 
following the second sentence to read as follows:

15.204-1  Uniform contract format.

* * * * *
    (b) * * * (See 4.1201(c).) * * *
* * * * *
[FR Doc. 06-8203 Filed 9-27-06; 8:45 am]