Two years after Congress required clearer criteria on when the Defense Department could issue lowest price, technically-acceptable (LPTA) contracts, Pentagon contracting officers still lack adequate written guidance, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) concluded in a recently released audit.
Under the fiscal 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (Section 813), the department is required to amend the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) to reflect eight criteria that justify the sometimes-controversial use of LPTA’s for awards of $5 million or more. (The requirements governing their use were expanded in the fiscal 2018 version.)
Though this type of contract can be efficient and quick for obtaining supplies and services, competing contractors often complain that the vehicle can short-change quality.
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