The Defense Department (DoD) issued 49 new acquisition rules between fiscal 2010 and 2014 that didn’t include any public comment period. The department said “urgent and compelling” circumstances forced the agency to move quickly on a rule in order to make a procurement, says an April 17 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report.
The DoD’s acquisition rulemaking procedures generally require it to issue a proposed rule first that provides no less than a 30-day public comment period, GAO says. However, the requirements may be waived if DoD determines that “urgent and compelling” circumstances make compliance with the requirements impracticable.
In those instances, DOD issues a temporary interim rule that provides at least a 30-day public comment period. DoD may then issue a subsequent final rule after considering any comments received, the report says.
From fiscal 2010 to fiscal 2014, DoD published 279 final and interim Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) rules.
Of the 279 final and interim DFARS rules, 139 were issued without prior notice and comment before they became effective.