[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 77 (Monday, April 21, 2008)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 21301-21302]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-8484]


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DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

Defense Acquisition Regulations System

48 CFR Chapter 2


Nontraditional Defense Contractor

AGENCY: Defense Acquisition Regulations System, Department of Defense 
(DoD).

ACTION: Request for public input.

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SUMMARY: DoD is interested in creating new and/or expanding existing 
pathways for nontraditional contractor participation in defense 
procurements. In order to gauge the Department's success with respect 
to this endeavor, DoD is specifically interested in first establishing 
a standard Department-wide definition for ``nontraditional defense 
contractor'' that would be applied in defense procurements conducted 
pursuant to the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) and the Defense 
FAR Supplement (DFARS). In support of this initiative, DoD is seeking 
industry input with regard to the standards that should be utilized in 
defining what constitutes a nontraditional defense contractor and in 
developing an appropriate definition for use on a permanent basis.

DATES: Submit written comments to the address shown below on or before 
June 20, 2008.

ADDRESSES: Submit comments to: Office of the Director, Defense 
Procurement and Acquisition Policy, ATTN: OUSD (AT&L) DPAP (CPIC), 3060 
Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301-3060. Comments also may be 
submitted by e-mail to Anthony.Cicala@osd.mil.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Anthony E. Cicala, by telephone at 
703-693-7062, or by e-mail at Anthony.Cicala@osd.mil.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Since the 1970s, DoD has encouraged its 
acquisition team to leverage, to the maximum extent possible, the 
commercial marketplace to acquire the Department's products and 
services. In response to special commissions, panels, and legislation, 
in January 2001, DoD required the development of implementation plans 
with the goal of increasing the acquisition of commercial items using 
the procedures at FAR Part 12, Acquisition of Commercial Items. In 
addition, legislative changes to FAR Part 12, and FAR Part 13--
Simplified Acquisition Procedures, were enacted in an attempt to 
streamline the process and create a more commercial-like contracting 
environment. DoD expected increased use of the flexibility afforded by 
FAR Part 12 and FAR Part 13 procedures to provide DoD greater access to 
the commercial markets (products and services types) which would lead 
to increased competition, better prices, and access to new market 
entrants and/or technologies. DoD is interested in determining how 
successful it has been, and is now examining ways to collect 
information on the number of nontraditional defense contractors the 
Department reaches through its acquisitions to evaluate the extent of 
increased access to commercial markets, potential cost savings, 
increased quality, and/or technological innovation.
    Currently, a definition for nontraditional defense contractor is 
promulgated at DFARS Subpart 212.70, but the application of that 
definition is limited to follow-on efforts to Other

[[Page 21302]]

Transaction (OT) for Prototype awards made by DoD pursuant to the 
authority of 10 U.S.C. 2371 and Section 845 of the National Defense 
Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1994 (Public Law 103-160), as 
amended. Given that this definition tends to be narrow in scope in that 
it has its genesis in Research and Development (R&D) projects that 
involve experimentation, test, demonstration, and developments related 
to weapons systems, the application of the current definition may not 
be entirely appropriate with respect to the various types of defense 
procurements that are possible under existing regulations.
    With respect to this request for information from interested 
parties, consideration should include, but is not necessarily limited 
to, the following:
    [cir] Should consideration be given to the percentage of a 
company's business that is devoted to defense specific award actions 
versus non-defense specific award actions in determining its status as 
a traditional vice nontraditional defense contractor? (e.g., If a 
company's sales revenue is based on 90 percent commercial sector versus 
10 percent defense sector, should that be taken into consideration? Are 
there other benchmarks that should be used in classifying a contractor 
as a nontraditional defense contractor and, if so, what are they and 
why are they appropriate?)
    [cir] Should the definition stay the same for all of the various 
types of acquisitions, or should the definition change depending upon 
products or services acquired? (e.g., Service, Supply, Construction, 
R&D)
    [cir] Should contractors be required to self-certify their status 
as a nontraditional defense contractor via registration in the Central 
Contractor Registration (CCR) database, Online Representations and 
Certifications Application (ORCA), or some other self-certification 
mechanism, based on an established definition for nontraditional 
defense contractor, so that individual contracting officers are not 
required to make these independent judgment calls for every single 
contract action contemplated? If not, how should DoD otherwise capture 
nontraditional defense contractor status?
    DoD requests your considered input for all other aspects of what 
constitutes a nontraditional defense contractor in DoD procurements.

Michele P. Peterson,
Editor, Defense Acquisition Regulations System.
 [FR Doc. E8-8484 Filed 4-18-08; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 5001-08-P