As part of its ongoing effort to bolster the defense industrial base, the Pentagon has issued two new pieces of guidance — one focused on workers, and one focused on prototype contracts.
Overall, the department has now issued 17 different actions, ranging from basic guidance for industry to memos changing how the department pays contractors, since March 5.
In an April 6 memo, acquisition head Ellen Lord changed the rules for issuing prototype contracts through other transaction authorities.
OTAs are small contracts awarded to companies of any size, in theory targeted at nontraditional defense contractors, with the purpose of conducting research or prototype efforts on a specific project; they are not subject to Federal Acquisition Regulation rules.
By comparison, SBIR contracts are targeted at small businesses in order to act as seed money for them to conduct research and development efforts; they are subject to the FAR rules.
The Contracting Education Academy at Georgia Tech has established a webpage where all contract-related developments related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) are summarized. Find the page at: https://contractingacademy.gatech.edu/coronavirus-information-for-contracting-officers-and-contractors/