Federal Contracting Methods

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Federal Contracting Open market and through existing and required sources using simplified acquisition techniques or formal contracting methods are the two methods used to supply goods and services to the US Government (14 FAH-2 H-200 Acquisition Basics, 2011). Simplified acquisition methods are when the aggregate, or total, amount are within the threshold and follow one of the Federal Acquisition Regulation Part 13 procedures, which include blanket-purchase agreements, purchase orders, purchase cards, or imprest funds. FAR 13.003 set the threshold value at $3000 not to exceed $150,000 in any single transaction. For a contract of $500,000, Sealed-Bidding (IFB) Process or Negotiated Procurement (RFB) Process must be used. Sealed Bids are competitive sealed bids given by vendors. They are only opened by a government contractor in a public ceremony and awarded to the most acceptable, lowest priced bidder. The sealed bidding process is considered when time permits for solicitation, submission, and evaluation, the award can be made on the basis of price and other related factors, and expectations of more than one bid is reasonable. No discussions are permitted after the bid ceremony. Any bid that is not sealed and lacking in the sealed bid prerequisites must use the negotiated method. Negotiation requires the technical and price proposals to be packaged separately. Negotiations may be held by a contracting officer to discuss discrepancies in the bids and ask for a revised
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