DoD wants ethics certifications from vendors

Monday - 6/6/2011, 7:50pm EDT

By Jared Serbu
DoD Reporter
Federal News Radio

The Pentagon is proposing new requirements for Defense contractors to ensure compliance with the various post-employment restrictions placed on federal employees once they move on to private sector jobs.

The change, published as a proposed rule in Monday's Federal Register, comes in response to a 2008 report by the Government Accountability Office, which found contractors dramatically underreported the number of former DoD officials working for them.

"Specifically, contractor data provided to us showed they employed 1,263 individuals in 2006 who matched our criteria as former DOD senior and acquisition officials, while our analysis of IRS data showed the contractors employed 2,435 former DOD senior and acquisition officials in 2006, or almost twice as many," GAO found.

"For DOD's part, it is not required nor does it have a mechanism for monitoring former senior and acquisition officials when they begin their new jobs with defense contractors."

Under the proposed rule, companies making an offer on a DoD contract would be representing that all of their former federal employees covered by the Procurement Integrity Act are in compliance with post-employment restrictions, such as the prohibition on representing their new employer to their former agency on issues that were part of their government responsibilities until after a two-year "cooling off" period.

However, the drafters of the proposed rule argue it does not create any additional reporting requirement for industry.

"There is no information collection requirement associated with this proposed rule. Offerors make the representation by submission of an offer," the rule states. "They are not allowed to submit an offer if they cannot make the representation."

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