Thought There Were 52 Unallowable Costs – Not So Fast

A Little Background

FAR Part 31, Cost Principles, is the regulation that government contractors must follow in order to account for cost on most government contracts. Within FAR Part 31 is FAR 31.205, Selected Costs. This part of the cost principles regulation specifically spells out unallowable cost that the government will not pay for under a government contract. This section starts at FAR 31.205-1 and goes all the way up to FAR 31.205-52. However, it should be noted that FAR 31.205-2, 5, 9, 24, 45, and 50 are “Reserved” – These reserved cost areas went the way of the dinosaur over time, hopefully not to return. For example, FAR 31.204-2, Automatic Data Processing Equipment Leasing Costs, required an annual demonstration that leasing computer equipment was cost-effective, i.e., lowest cost to the Federal Government.

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Topics: Incurred Cost Submission, Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, Government Compliance Training, Incurred Cost Proposals, Cost-Type Contracts, DCAA Audit Support, FAR, Government Regulations, DOD Contractors

DoD Expands Treatment of Contractor Purchases as Commercial Items

Here are the Details

DoD issued DFARs Final Rule D2019-D029 – Treatment of Commingled Items Under $10K, effective October 1, 2020, to implement several sections of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 that addresses treatment of commingled items purchased by contractors and services provided by nontraditional defense contractors as commercial items. This blog only addresses the DFARS change relative to the treatment of commingled items purchased by a contractor. The final rule is applicable to all solicitations and contracts, including solicitations and contracts using FAR Part 12 procedures for the acquisition of commercial items and solicitations and contracts valued at or below the simplified acquisition threshold.

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Topics: Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, DFARS Business Systems, DCAA Audit Support, Contractor Purchasing System Review (CPSR), DOD Contractors

DPC Clarifies Allowability of Donated Leave Related to COVID


Let us Set the Stage

On June 11, 2020, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) put out a Notice (2020-46) that allowed employees to donate unused leave to charitable groups supporting the COVID-19 National Emergency. Under the leave-based donation program, employees can elect to forgo vacation, sick, or personal leave in exchange for cash payments that the employer makes to charitable organizations. The notice provides that employee’s donation of leave will not be taxable income to the employee, however the employer will still treat the cost of the leave granted to the employee as either ordinary and necessary business expense or a charitable contribution. This applies to donations made before the end of the 2020 calendar year.

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Topics: Contracts Administration, COVID-19

FASB 842 Lease Accounting – What is the Impact on Government Cost Accounting?

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued Topic 842, Leases, in February 2016 effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2018. The change was “to increase transparency and comparability among organizations by recognizing lease assets and lease liabilities on the balance sheet and disclosing key information about leasing arrangements.” For the past 40 years or so, operating leases were only required to be presented in the disclosure and were off-balance sheet transactions. Other than the new asset (Right to Use asset) and a related liability on the balance sheet, the impact on the income statement (a single line item for lease expense) and cash flow are unchanged, at least under GAAP. International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) now requires all leases be treated similar to capital leases (Topic 842 calls these finance leases). So, under IFRS there will be more unallowable interest to properly account for on Government proposals and contracts incorporating FAR Part 31.

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Topics: Non-US government contractor, Cost and Pricing and Budgeting, Contracts Administration, Cost-Type Contracts, Accounting & Billing System, DOD Contractors, Cost Accounting Standards (CAS)

Subcontract Considerations, Basic Tip on Compliance for Prime Contractors

If your business pipeline is growing and you are issuing more subcontracts of higher values, Contractors should be aware that your organization has a duty under 48 CFR §22.805 to the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP).

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Topics: Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, FAR, Contractor Purchasing System Review (CPSR), Government Regulations, DOD Contractors

Is Six Months Best for Incurred Cost Proposals, A New Game is Afoot

As we wrap up another hectic year of working with contractors to prepare, review and submit their Incurred Cost Proposals, it had us questioning…“Why do so many contractors wait until the last minute of their deadline to submit? Is there an advantage to submitting at the last minute or is submitting at the last minute actually a disadvantage?”

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Topics: Incurred Cost Submission, Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, Incurred Cost Proposals, Cost-Type Contracts, FAR

CARES Act Section 3610, DPC DFARS Class Deviation and Guidance

On August 17, 2020; Acting Principal Director for Defense Pricing and Contracting issued two memos providing guidance in support of DFARS Class Deviation 2020-O0013 and 2020-O0021 – CARES Act Section 3610 Implementation. There is also a memo providing contracting officers with a template for a Memorandum for Record to document the file for the issuance of the Section 3610 related contract modification.

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Topics: Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, Cost-Type Contracts, DCAA Audit Support, DPAP, Accounting & Billing System, DOD Contractors, Cost Accounting Standards (CAS), COVID-19

DCAA COVID-19 Guidance – Still in a Wait and See, Holding Pattern

We Lifted the Vail

A few months back we submitted a request to DCAA under Freedom of Information Act. Based on the DPC guidance referencing both DCAA and DCMA as playing a key role in support of the rest of the DoD Acquisition Community, we expected DCAA would have a significant number of documents disclosing this key role. Turns out, not so much. All we got was a single document listing 13 frequently asked questions (FAQs) DCAA has been fielding from their auditors, dated July 31, 2020.

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Topics: Cost and Pricing and Budgeting, Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, Cost-Type Contracts, DCAA Audit Support, DPAP, DOD Contractors, Cost Accounting Standards (CAS), COVID-19

Indirect Cost Basics for Government Contractors

FAR Subpart 2.1, Definitions, provides the meaning of two general groupings of cost not assignable directly to final cost objectives (i.e., not a direct contract cost):

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Topics: Contracts Administration, DCAA Audit Support

Novations in Government Contracting

Is your company in a situation, performing as a prime contractor on government contracts, but needing to sell the business? Or is there a material change in your business causing a transfer of assets to another business? In the commercial world of contracts and business operations, the assignment of contracts primarily operates under the Uniform Commercial Code (the “UCC”) and assignments occur frequently due to the ever-changing business landscape. However, this process does not exist in government contracting and novation may be the route for your organization. Assignment and novation of contracts have different consequences for the parties involved; however, for purposes of this article, we will specifically address novation within the context of contracting with the U.S. Government.

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Topics: Contracts Administration