[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 223 (Friday, November 18, 2011)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 71468]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-29859]



Defense Acquisition Regulations System

48 CFR Part 232

RIN 0750-AH19

Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement: Accelerate 
Small Business Payments (DFARS Case 2011-D008)

AGENCY: Defense Acquisition Regulations System, Department of Defense 

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: DoD is adopting as final, without change, an interim rule 
amending the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement to 
accelerate payments to all small business concerns.

DATES: Effective Date: November 18, 2011.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Lee Renna, telephone 703-602-0764.


I. Background

    DoD published an interim rule in the Federal Register at 76 FR 
23505 on April 27, 2011, amending the Defense Federal Acquisition 
Regulation Supplement (DFARS) to provide accelerated payments for all 
small business concerns. The rule removes the term ``disadvantaged'' 
from the language at DFARS 232.903 and DFARS 232.906(a)(ii), thereby 
extending the accelerated payment policy uniformly to all small 
business concerns.
    In combination with the change to the regulations, DoD immediately 
began a phased implementation to update the entitlement and payment 
systems so that they could accommodate accelerated payments. During the 
initial phase, the Defense Finance and Accounting Service modified 
DoD's largest system, the Mechanization of Contract Administration 
Services (MOCAS) system. MOCAS processes approximately 57 percent of 
the dollars paid through DFAS. The upgrades to MOCAS were completed on 
June 1, 2011. Over the course of the next year, subsequent legacy 
entitlement and payment system upgrades are scheduled for completion 
and deployment.
    Two respondents submitted public comments. DoD reviewed the 
comments in the development of the final rule. A discussion of the 
comments is provided as follows.

II. Discussion and Analysis of the Public Comments

    Comment: The first respondent commented that the rule would ensure 
their company had adequate cash flow to promptly pay its vendors.
    Response: This positive endorsement of the rule is noted.
    Comment: The second respondent stated that the wording of the rule 
is ambiguous. Rather than stating it is DoD policy to pay small 
business concerns ``* * * as soon as possible * * *'', the respondent 
recommended that the rule should specify the number of days for 
processing payments to small business.
    Response: The authority for DoD's payment policy is the Office of 
Management and Budget's (OMB's) Prompt Payment Regulations at part 1315 
of title 5 of the Code of Federal Regulations. The phrase ``* * * as 
quickly as possible * * *'' was taken verbatim from those regulations.

III. Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

    Executive Orders (E.O.s) 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess 
all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if 
regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize 
net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public 
health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). E.O. 
13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, 
of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. 
This is a significant regulatory action and, therefore, was subject to 
review under section 6(b) of E.O. 12866, Regulatory Planning and 
Review, dated September 30, 1993. This rule is not a major rule under 5 
U.S.C. 804.

IV. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    A final regulatory flexibility analysis (FRFA) has been prepared 
consistent with the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601, et seq., 
and is summarized as follows:
    This final rule adopts as final, without change, the interim rule 
that revised DFARS 232.903 and 232.906(a)(ii) to allow accelerated 
payment processes for all small business concerns. The objective of the 
rule is to pay small businesses as quickly as possible.
    There were no significant issues raised by the public in response 
to the initial regulatory flexibility analysis.
    There were no comments filed by the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of 
the Small Business Administration in response to the rule.
    Analysis of the Federal Procurement Data System indicates that 
approximately 60,000 small businesses had active contracts in Fiscal 
Year 2010. It is reasonable to assume a similar number of small 
businesses will be positively affected by the use of accelerated 
payment procedures.
    This final rule imposes no new reporting or recordkeeping 
requirements on the small business community.
    DoD expects this rule to have a significant positive economic 
impact on all small entities within the meaning of the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601, et seq., because it extends accelerated 
payments to all small business concerns. There were no significant 
alternatives identified that would meet the objectives of the rule.

V. Paperwork Reduction Act

    This final rule does not contain any information collection 
requirements that require the approval of the Office of Management and 
Budget under the Paperwork Burden Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

List of Subjects in 48 CFR Part 232

    Government procurement.

Mary Overstreet,
Editor, Defense Acquisition Regulations System.

Interim Rule Adopted as Final Without Change

Accordingly, the interim rule amending 48 CFR part 232, which was 
published at 76 FR 23505 on April 27, 2011, is adopted as a final rule 
without change.

[FR Doc. 2011-29859 Filed 11-17-11; 8:45 am]