[Federal Register Volume 87, Number 6 (Monday, January 10, 2022)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 1081-1082]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2022-00073]



48 CFR Parts 615 and 652

[Public Notice: 11611]
RIN 1400-AE60

Acquisition Regulation: Access to Contractor Records

AGENCY: Department of State.

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: The Department of State (the Department) is finalizing an 
amendment to the Department of State Acquisition Regulation (DOSAR), to 
add a new contract clause relating to Department requests for 
examination of contractor records.

DATES: This final rule is effective February 9, 2022.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tandra A. Jones, Senior Procurement, 
Email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On July 2, 2021, the Department published a 
notice of proposed rulemaking, proposing to add 48 CFR part 615, 
section 615.209-70, Examination of Records, and 48 CFR part 652, 
section 652.209-70, Examination of Records, to the Department of State 
Acquisition Regulation (DOSAR). 86 FR 35257. The Department provided 60 
days for public comment. No comments were received. Accordingly, the 
Department is publishing this final rule.

What is the authority for this rule?

    Title 41 of the U.S. Code, section 4706, provides that the head of 
an executive agency, acting through an authorized representative, may, 
for the purpose of evaluating the accuracy, completeness, and currency 
of certified cost or pricing data required to be submitted pursuant to 
41 U.S.C. chapter 35 with respect to a contract or subcontract, examine 
all records of the contractor or subcontractor related to:
     The proposal for the contract or subcontract;
     the discussions conducted on the proposal;
     pricing of the contract or subcontract; or
     performance of the contract or subcontract.
    The Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), 48 CFR 15.209(b), 
Solicitation provisions and contract clauses, states (in summary) that, 
when contracting by negotiation, except as provided in paragraph (b)(2) 
of Sec.  15.209,\1\ the contracting officer shall insert the clause at 
Sec.  52.215-2, Audit and Records-Negotiation, in solicitations and 
contracts except those for

    \1\ Paragraph (b)(2) relates to contracts using funds 
appropriated or otherwise made available by the American Recovery 
and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Pub. L. 111-5).

     Acquisitions not exceeding the simplified acquisition 
    [cir] The acquisition of utility services at rates not exceeding 
those established to apply uniformly to the general public, plus any 
applicable reasonable connection charge; or
    [cir] The acquisition of commercial items exempted under Sec.  

[[Page 1082]]

Why is the Department publishing this rule?

    The DOSAR implements the FAR (and therefore, the statute, 41 U.S.C. 
4706) for the Department of State.\2\ The Department has determined, 
after a review of the existing regulations, that further clarity is 
required regarding implementation of 41 U.S.C. 4706 as it relates to 
contracts other than contracts by negotiation (which, as noted, are 
already covered by FAR Sec.  15.209(b)).

    \2\ 48 CFR 601.303.

    For these reasons, the Department is adding Sec.  615.209-70 to the 
DOSAR, requiring the contracting officer to insert a new clause, 
Examination of Records (proposed Sec.  652.215-70), in all 
solicitations and contracts other than contracts by negotiation.

Regulatory Findings

Administrative Procedure Act

    In accordance with the provisions of the Administrative Procedure 
Act, the Department published this rulemaking as a proposed rule, and 
provided 60 days for public comment. This final rule will be effective 
30 days after publication.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Department of State, in accordance with the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 605(b)), has reviewed this regulation and, by 
approving it, certifies that this rule will not have a significant 
economic impact on small entities. This determination is based on the 
fact that this rulemaking clarifies within the DOSAR the authority of 
the Department to examine contractor records, which is already provided 
by statute.

Congressional Review Act

    This rule is not a major rule as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

Unfunded Mandates Act of 1995

    This will not result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal 
governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 
million or more in any year and it will not significantly or uniquely 
affect small governments. Therefore, no actions were deemed necessary 
under the provisions of the Unfunded Mandates Act of 1995.

Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

    Executive Orders (E.O.) 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess 
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 
emphasized the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of 
reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. The 
Department has reviewed the regulation to ensure its consistency with 
the regulatory philosophy and principles set forth in the Executive 
Orders and finds that the benefits of this rule outweigh any costs, 
which the Department assesses to be minimal. As noted, this rule does 
not impose any new requirements on contractors. The Office of 
Information and Regulatory Affairs has determined that this regulation 
is ``not significant'' under E.O. 12866.

Executive Order 13132

    This rule will not have substantial direct effects on the States, 
on the relationship between the national government and the States, or 
on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various 
levels of government. Therefore, in accordance with section 6 of 
Executive Order 13132, it is determined that this rulemaking will not 
have sufficient federalism implications to require consultations or 
warrant the preparation of a federalism summary impact statement.

Executive Order 13175

    The Department has determined that this rulemaking will not have 
tribal implications, will not impose substantial direct compliance 
costs on Indian tribal governments, and will not pre-empt tribal law. 
Accordingly, the requirements of Executive Order 13175 do not apply to 
this rulemaking.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This rule does not add or revise any information collection 
requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. chapter 

List of Subjects in 48 CFR Parts 615 and 652

    Administrative practice and procedure, Government procurement.

    Accordingly, the Department of State amends 48 CFR chapter 6 as 


1. The authority citation for part 615 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  22 U.S.C. 2651a, 40 U.S.C. 121(c) and 48 CFR chapter 

2. Section 615.209-70 is added to read as follows:

615.209-70  Examination of records.

    The contracting officer shall insert the clause at 652.215-70, 
Examination of Records, in all solicitations and contracts other than 
those described in Federal Acquisition Regulation 15.209(b)(1).


3. The authority citation for part 652 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  22 U.S.C. 2651a, 40 U.S.C. 121(c) and 48 CFR chapter 

4. Section 652.215-70 is added to read as follows:

652.215-70   Examination of records.

    As prescribed in 615.209-70, insert the following clause.

Examination of Records

    (a) With respect to matters related to this contract or a 
subcontract hereunder, the Department of State Office of the Inspector 
General, or an authorized representative, shall have upon request:
    (1) Complete, prompt, and free access to all Contractor and 
Subcontractor files (in any format), documents, records, data, 
premises, and employees, except as limited by law; and
    (2) The right to interview any current Contractor and Subcontractor 
personnel, individually and directly, with respect to such matters.
    (b) This clause may not be construed to require the contractor or 
any subcontractor to create or maintain any record that the contractor 
or subcontractor does not maintain in the ordinary course of business 
or pursuant to a provision of law.
    (c) The Contractor shall insert a clause containing all the terms 
of this clause, including this paragraph (c), in all subcontracts under 
this contract other than acquisitions described in Federal Acquisition 
Regulation 15.209(b)(1).

(End of clause)

Michael W. Derrios,
Senior Procurement Executive, Office of the Procurement Executive, U.S. 
Department of State.
[FR Doc. 2022-00073 Filed 1-7-22; 8:45 am]