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Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality National Resource Center for Health IT (NRC)

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SECTION L—INSTRUCTIONS, CONDITIONS AND NOTICES TO OFFERORS

L.1  SOLICITATION PROVISIONS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE (FEB 1998) (FAR 52.252-1)

This solicitation incorporates the following solicitation provisions by reference, with the same force and effect as if they were given in full text.  The full text of a clause may be assessed electronically at this address: http://www.arnet.gov/far/.

  1. Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) (48 CFR Chapter 1) Solicitation Provisions
    1. 52.215-16 Facilities Capital Cost of Money (OCT 1997)
    2. 52.215-20 Requirements for Cost or Pricing Data or Information Other Than Cost or Pricing Data (OCT 1997)

L.2  DATA UNIVERSAL NUMBERING (DUNS)(OCT 2003) (FAR 52.204-6)

  1. The offeror shall enter, in the block with its name and address on the cover page of its offer, the annotation "DUNS" or "DUNS+4" followed by the DUNS number or "DUNS+4" that identifies the offeror's name and address exactly as stated in the offer. The DUNS number is a nine-digit number assigned by Dun and Bradstreet Information Services. The DUNS+4 is the DUNS number plus a 4-character suffix that may be assigned at the discretion of the offeror to establish additional CCR records for identifying alternative Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) accounts (go to Subpart 32.11) for the same parent concern.
  2. If the offeror does not have a DUNS number, it should contact Dun and Bradstreet directly to obtain one.
    1. An offeror may obtain a DUNSnumber—
      1. If located within the United States, by calling Dun and Bradstreet at 1-866-705-5711 or via the Internet at http://www.dnb.com; or
      2. If located outside the United States, by contacting the local Dun and Bradstreet office.
    2. The offeror should be prepared to provide the following information:
      1. Company legal business name.
      2. Tradestyle, doing business, or other name by which your entity is commonly recognized.
      3. Company physical street address, city, state and Zip Code.
      4. Company mailing address, city, state and Zip Code (if separate from physical).
      5. Company telephone number.
      6. Date the company was started.
      7. Number of employees at your location.
      8. Chief executive officer/ key manager.
      9. Line of business (industry).
      10. Company Headquarters name and address (reporting relationship within your entity).

(End of provision)

L.3  INSTRUCTIONS TO OFFERORS—COMPETITIVE ACQUISITION (MAY 2001)
ALTERNATE I (JAN 2004)(FAR 52.215-1)

  1. Definitions. As used in this provision—

    "Discussions" are negotiations that occur after establishment of the competitive range that may, at the Contracting Officer's discretion, result in the offeror being allowed to revise its proposal.

    "In writing," "writing," or "written" means any worded or numbered expression that can be read, reproduced, and later communicated, and includes electronically transmitted and stored information.

    "Proposal modification" is a change made to a proposal before the solicitation's closing date and time, or made in response to an amendment, or made to correct a mistake at any time before award.

    "Proposal revision" is a change to a proposal made after the solicitation closing date, at the request of or as allowed by a Contracting Officer as the result of negotiations.

    "Time," if stated as a number of days, is calculated using calendar days, unless otherwise specified, and will include Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays. However, if the last day falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, then the period shall include the next working day.

  2. Amendments to solicitations. If this solicitation is amended, all terms and conditions that are not amended remain unchanged.  Offerors shall acknowledge receipt of any amendment to this solicitation by the date and time specified in the amendment(s).
  3. Submission, modification, revision, and withdrawal of proposals. 
    1. Unless other methods (e.g., electronic commerce or facsimile) are permitted in the solicitation, proposals and modifications to proposals shall be submitted in paper media in sealed envelopes or packages (i) addressed to the office specified in the solicitation, and (ii) showing the time and date specified for receipt, the solicitation number, and the name and address of the offeror.  Offerors using commercial carriers should ensure that the proposal is marked on the outermost wrapper with the information in paragraphs (c)(1)(i) and (c)(1)(ii) of this provision.
    2. The first page of the proposal must show—
      1. The solicitation number;
      2. The name, address, and telephone and facsimile numbers of the offeror (and electronic address if available);
      3. A statement specifying the extent of agreement with all terms, conditions, and provisions  included in the solicitation and agreement to furnish any or all items upon which prices are offered at the price set opposite each item;
      4. Names, titles, and telephone and facsimile numbers (and electronic addresses if  available) of persons authorized to negotiate on the offeror's behalf with the Government  in connection with this solicitation; and
      5. Name, title, and signature of person authorized to sign the proposal.  Proposals signed by an agent shall be accompanied by evidence of that agent's authority, unless that evidence has been previously furnished to the issuing office.
    3. Submissions, modification, revision, and withdrawal of proposals. 
      1. Offerors are responsible for submitting proposals, and any modification or revisions, so as to reach the Government office designated in the solicitation by the time specified in the solicitation.  If no time is specified in the solicitation, the time for receipt is 4:30 p.m., local time, for the designated Government office on the date that proposal or revision is due.
      2. (A) Any proposal, modification, or revision received at the Government office designated in the solicitation after the exact time specified for receipt of offers is "late" and will not be considered unless it is received before award is made, the Contracting Officer determines that accepting the late offer would not unduly delay the acquisition; and—
        1. If it was transmitted through an electronic commerce method authorized by the solicitation, it was received at the initial point of entry to the Government infrastructure not later than 5:00 p.m. one working day prior to the date specified for receipt of proposals; or
        2. There is acceptable evidence to establish that it was received at the Government installation  designated for receipt of offers and was under the Government's control prior to the time set for receipt of offers; or
        3. It is the only proposal received.

        (B) However, a late modification of an otherwise successful proposal that makes its terms more favorable to the Government, will be considered at any time it is received and may be accepted.

      3. Acceptable evidence to establish the time of receipt at the Government installation includes the time/date stamp of that installation on the proposal wrapper, other documentary evidence of receipt maintained by the installation, or oral testimony or statements of Government personnel.
      4. If an emergency or unanticipated event interrupts normal Government processes so that proposals cannot be received at the office designated for receipt of proposals by the exact time specified in the solicitation, and urgent Government requirements preclude amendment of the solicitation, the time specified for receipt of proposals will be deemed to be extended to the same time of day specified in the solicitation on the first work day on which normal Government processes resume.
      5. Proposals may be withdrawn by written notice received at any time before award. Oral proposals in response to oral solicitations may be withdrawn orally. If the solicitation authorizes facsimile proposals, proposals may be withdrawn via facsimile received at any time before award, subject to the conditions specified in the provision at 52.215-5, "Facsimile Proposals." Proposals may be withdrawn in person by an offeror or an authorized representative, if the representative's identity is made known and the representative signs a receipt for the proposal before award.
    4. Unless otherwise specified in the solicitation, the offeror may propose to provide any item or combination of items.
    5. Offerors shall submit proposals submitted in response to this solicitation in English, unless otherwise permitted by the solicitation, and in U.S. dollars, unless the provision at FAR 52.225-17, Evaluation of Foreign Currency Offers, is included in the solicitation.
    6. Offerors may submit modifications to their proposals at any time before the solicitation closing date and time, and may submit modifications in response to an amendment, or to correct a mistake at any time before award.
    7. Offers may submit revised proposals only if requested or allowed by the Contracting Officer.
    8. Proposals may be withdrawn at any time before award. Withdrawals are effective upon receipt of notice by the Contracting Officer.
  4. Offer expiration date.  Proposals in response to this solicitation will be valid for the number of days specified on the solicitation cover sheet (unless a different period is proposed by the offeror).
  5. Restriction on disclosure and use of data.  Offerors that include in their proposals data that they do not want disclosed to the public for any purpose, or used by the Government except for evaluation purposes, shall—
    1. Mark the title page with the following legend:
      "This proposal includes data that shall not be disclosed outside the Government and shall not be duplicated, used, or disclosed—in whole or in part—for any purpose other than to evaluate this proposal." If, however, a contract is awarded to this offeror as a result of—or in connection with—the submission of this data, the Government shall have the right to duplicate, use, or disclose the data to the extent provided in the resulting contract.  This restriction does not limit the Government's right to use information contained in this data if it is obtained from another source without restriction.  The data subject to this restriction are contained in sheets [insert numbers or other identification of sheets]; and
    2. Mark each sheet of data it wishes to restrict with the following legend:

      "Use or disclosure of data contained on this sheet is subject to the restriction on the title page of this proposal."

  6. Contract award.
    1. The Government intends to award a contract or contracts resulting from this solicitation to the responsible offeror(s) whose proposal(s) represents the best value after evaluation in accordance with the factors and subfactors in the solicitation.
    2. The Government may reject any or all proposals if such action is in the Government's interest.
    3. The Government may waive informalities and minor irregularities in proposals received.
    4. The Government intends to evaluate proposals and award a contract after conducting discussions with offerors whose proposals have been determined to be within the competitive range.  If the Contracting Officer determines that the number of proposals that would otherwise be in the competitive range exceeds the number at which an efficient competition can be conducted, the Contracting Officer may limit the number of proposals in the competitive range to the greatest number that will permit an efficient competition among the most highly rated proposals.  Therefore, the offeror's initial proposal should contain the offeror's best terms from a price and technical standpoint.
    5. The Government reserves the right to make an award on any item for a quantity less than the quantity offered, at the unit cost or prices offered, unless the offeror specifies otherwise in the proposal.
    6. The Government reserves the right to make multiple awards if, after considering the additional administrative costs, it is in the Government's best interest to do so.
    7. Exchanges with offerors after receipt of a proposal do not constitute a rejection or counteroffer by the Government.
    8. The Government may determine that a proposal is unacceptable if the prices proposed are materially unbalanced between line items or subline items. Unbalanced pricing exists when, despite an acceptable total evaluated price, the price of one or more contract line items is significantly overstated or understated as indicated by the application of cost or price analysis techniques.  A proposal may be rejected if the Contracting Officer determines that the lack of balance poses an unacceptable risk to the Government.
    9. If a cost realism analysis is performed, cost realism may be considered by the source selection authority in evaluating performance or schedule risk.
    10. A written award or acceptance of proposal mailed or otherwise furnished to the successful offeror within the time specified in the proposal shall result in a binding contract without further action by either party.
    11. If a post-award debriefing is given to requesting offerors, the Government shall disclose the following information, if applicable:
      1. The agency's evaluation of the significant weak or deficient factors in the debriefed offeror's offer.
      2. The overall evaluated cost or price and technical rating of the successful and the debriefed offeror and past performance information on the debriefed offeror.
      3. The overall ranking of all offerors, when any ranking was developed by the agency during source selection.
      4. A summary of the rationale for award.
      5. For acquisitions of commercial items, the make and model of the item to be delivered by the successful offeror.
      6. Reasonable responses to relevant questions posed by the debriefed offerors as to whether source-selection procedures set forth in the solicitation, applicable regulations, and other applicable authorities were followed by the agency.

Alternate I (October 1977). As prescribed in 15.209(a)(1), substitute the following paragraph (f)(4) for paragraph (f)(4) of the basic provision:

(f) (4) The Government intends to evaluate proposals and award a contract after conducting discussions with offerors whose proposals have been determined to be within the competitive range. If the Contracting Officer determines that the number of proposals that would otherwise be in the competitive range exceeds the number at which an efficient competition can be conducted, the Contracting Officer may limit the number of proposals in the competitive range to the greatest number that will permit an efficient competition among the most highly rated proposals. Therefore, the offeror's initial proposal should contain the offeror's best terms from a price and technical standpoint.

L.4 TYPE OF CONTRACT (APRIL 1984) (FAR 52.216-1)

It is anticipated that multiple Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ or Task Order) awards will be made from this solicitation and that awards will be made on or about May 31, 2009.

L.5 SINGLE OR MULTIPLE AWARDS (OCT 1995)(FAR 52.216-27)

The Government may elect to award a single contract or to award multiple contracts for the same or similar supplies or services to two or more sources under this solicitation.

L.6 SERVICE OF PROTEST (AUG 1996)(FAR 52.233-2)

  1. Protests, as defined in Section 33.101 of the Federal Acquisition Regulation, that are filed directly with an agency, and copies of any protests that are filed with the General Accounting Office (GAO) shall be served on the Contracting Officer (addressed as follows) by obtaining written and dated acknowledgment of receipt from:

    Director, Division of Contracts Management
    Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
    540 Gaither Road
    Rockville, Maryland 20850

  2. The copy of any protest shall be received in the office designated above within one day of filing a protest with the GAO.

L.7 COMMUNICATIONS PRIOR TO CONTRACT AWARD 

Offerors shall direct all communications and questions to the attention of the Contracting Officer cited on the face page of this solicitation. Communications with other officials may compromise the competitiveness of this acquisition and result in cancellation of the solicitation.

The technical contact for additional information and answering inquiries is the Contracting Officer. All questions regarding this solicitation shall be in writing (via e-mail) and received by the Contracting Officer no later than 12:00 noon EST January 21, 2009. All questions should be e-mailed to Sharon Williams at Sharon.Williams@ahrq.hhs.gov. The subject line should be marked "Proposal Questions RFP No. AHRQ-2009-10003."

L.8 PROPOSAL INTENT/APPROVAL FOR CONTACT INFORMATION FOR BIDDERS LIST (Attachment 7 )

It is requested that if an offeror intends to submit a proposal to this solicitation that the attached Proposal Intent Form be completed and returned to the address indicated by the date indicated. The submission of the intent form is not binding on an offeror to submit a proposal, nor does the failure to submit the form prohibit an offeror from submitting a proposal. The purpose is to provide us with an estimated number of proposals to assist us in our planning and logistics for proposal reviews.

Please check the appropriate Domain(s) that you are interested in.

 We have added a request to include your contact information to a bidders list. The bidders list will be provided to interested offerors for subcontracting opportunities, as part of an amendment to the solicitation. In order for AHRQ to include your contact information on the bidders list, you must return the Proposal Intent Form and check the box that grants permission to add your name no later than the date listed above.

L.9  GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS

Introduction

The following instructions will establish the acceptable minimum requirements for the format and contents of proposals. The Government requires a minimum acceptance period of 120 days.

A separate proposal consisting of a Cover Page, Technical Proposal, Past Performance, Business Proposal and Small Disadvantaged Business Participation Plan (in the appropriate number of copies) must be submitted (and properly identified) for each Domain for which the offeror submits a proposal. Proposals for each Domain should be packaged separately for ease in distribution to the appropriate Peer Review Committee.

  1. Contract Type and General Provisions: It is contemplated that multiple Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ or Task Order) contracts will be awarded. In addition to the special provisions of this request for proposal (RFP), any resultant contract shall include the general clauses applicable to the selected offeror's organization and type of contract awarded. Any additional clauses required by Public Law, Executive Order, or procurement regulations, in effect at the time of execution of the proposed contract, will be included.
  2. Authorized Official and Submission of Proposal:  The proposal shall be signed by an official authorized to bind your (the offeror's) organization. Your proposal shall be submitted in the number of copies, to the address, and marked as indicated in the cover letter of this solicitation. Proposals will be typewritten, reproduced on letter sized paper and will be legible in all required copies.
  3. Separation of Technical, Past Performance Information, and Business Proposal : The proposal shall be in 4 separate parts. To expedite the proposal evaluation, all documents required for responding to the RFP should be placed in the RFP should be placed in the following order:
    1. Cover Page: The Cover Page shall include the solicitation title, the solicitation number, name of organization, author(s) of technical proposal, point of contact information for questions on the proposal, and shall indicate whether the proposal is the original or a copy. Indicate the Domain number(s) proposed and the business size of the organization (such as large business, small business, small disadvantaged business, veteran-owned small business, etc.). The Cover Page must indicate the Domain number for the proposal so it can be sent to the proper Technical Proposal Peer Review Committee.
    2. Technical Proposal: Go to Technical Proposal Instructions for recommended format (L.10). Please mark as original or copy.
    3. Past Performance Information: Refer to Past Performance Information Instructions for format (L.11).
    4. Business Proposal: Refer to Business Proposal Instructions for recommended format (L.13).
    5. Small Disadvantaged Business Participation Plan: Refer to Small Disadvantaged Business Participation Plan Instructions for recommended format (L.12).

      Each of the parts shall be separate and complete in itself so that evaluation of one may be accomplished independently of, and concurrently with, evaluation of the other.

  4. Evaluation of Proposals: The Government will evaluate technical proposals in accordance with the criteria set forth in Section M, Evaluation/Award Criteria.
  5. Potential Award Without Discussion: The Government reserves the right to award a contract without discussions if the Contracting Officer determines that the initial prices are fair and reasonable and that discussions are not necessary.
  6. Rejection of Proposals:  The Government reserves the right to reject any or all proposals received. It is understood that your proposal will become part of the official contract file.
  7. Unnecessarily Elaborate Proposals: Unnecessarily elaborate brochures or other presentations beyond those sufficient to present a complete and effective proposal are not desired and may be construed as an indication of the offeror's lack of cost consciousness. Elaborate art work, expensive visual and other presentation aids are neither necessary nor wanted.
  8. Privacy Act: The Privacy Act of 1974 (Public Law (P.L.) 93-579) requires that a Federal agency advise each individual whom it asks to supply information: 1) the authority which authorized the solicitation; 2) whether disclosure is voluntary or mandatory; (3) the principal purpose or purposes for which the information is intended to be used; (4) the uses outside the agency which may be made of the information; and 4) the effects on the individual, if any, of not providing all or any part of the requested information.

    Therefore:

    1. The Government is requesting the information called for in this RFP pursuant to the authority provided by Section 301(g) of the Public Health Service Act, as amended, and P.L. 92-218, as amended.
    2. Provisions of the information requested are entirely voluntary.
    3. The collection of this information is for the purpose of conducting an accurate, fair, and adequate review prior to a discussion as to whether to award a contract.
    4. Failure to provide any or all of the requested information may result in a less than adequate review.
    5. The information provided by you may be routinely disclosed for the following purposes:
      • to the cognizant audit agency and the General Accounting Officer (GAO) for auditing;
      • to the Department of Justice as required for litigation;
      • to respond to Congressional inquiries; and
      • to qualified experts, not within the definition of Department employees for opinions as a part of the review process.

    In addition, the Privacy Act of 1974 (P.L. 93-579, Section 7) requires that the following information be provided when individuals are requested to disclose their social security number.

    Provision of the social security number is voluntary. Social security numbers are requested for the purpose of accurate and efficient identification, referral, review and management of AHRQ contracting programs. Authority for requesting this information is provided by Section 305 and Title IV of the Public Health Service Act, as amended.

  9. The RFP does not commit the Government to pay any cost for the preparation and submission of a proposal. It is also brought to your attention that the Contracting Officer is the only individual who can legally commit the Government to the expenditure of public funds in connection with this or any acquisition action.

    The Government reserves the right to award a contract without discussions if the Contracting Officer determines that the initial prices are fair and reasonable and that discussions are not necessary.

L.10 TECHNICAL PROPOSAL INSTRUCTIONS

The technical proposal shall contain an original and twelve (12) hard copies, plus two electronic copies on CD. A technical proposal must be submitted for each Domain for which the offeror is submitting a proposal. The technical proposal described below shall be limited to 100 pages not including biographic sketches, with no less than a 11 point font, double-spaced (lists of deliverables, person loading charts, and similar materials need not be double-spaced, so long as they are legible). Brief biographic sketches or CVs (less than ten pages in length) providing the relevant qualifications necessary for this effort are only required for key personnel. The technical proposal shall not contain reference to cost; however resources information, such as data concerning labor hours and categories, labor mix, materials, subcontracts, etc., shall be contained in the technical proposal so that your understanding of the Statement of Work (SOW) may be evaluated. It must disclose your technical approach in as much detail as possible, including, but not limited to, the requirements of these instructions. Lengthy proposals and voluminous appendices are neither needed nor desired as they are difficult to read and evaluate and may indicate the offeror's inability to concisely state their proposal. Appendices are to be provided electronically in MS Office format on CD, in the same quantity as the technical proposal.

  1. Recommended Technical Proposal Format

    The offeror's proposal should present sufficient information to reflect a thorough understanding of the work requirements and a detailed plan for achieving the objectives of the scope of work. Technical proposals shall not merely paraphrase the requirements of the Agency's scope of work or parts thereof, or use of phrases such as "will comply" or "standard techniques will be employed." The technical proposal must include a detailed description of the techniques and procedures to be used in achieving the proposed end results in compliance with the requirements of the Agency's scope of work. 

    1. Cover Page: The name of the proposing organization, list of proposed subcontractors, author(s) of the technical proposal, the RFP number and the title of the RFP should appear on the cover. The cover page must also include the DUNS and TIN as well as a point of contact and contact information. Indicate the Domain number proposed and the business size of the proposing organization. One (1) manually signed original copy of the proposal and the number of copies specified in the RFP cover letter are required.
    2. Table of Contents: Provide sufficient detail so that all important elements of the proposal can be located readily.
    3. Introduction: This should be a one or two page summary outlining the proposed work, your interest in submitting a proposal, and the importance of this effort in relation to your overall operation.
    4. Technical Discussion: The offeror shall prepare a technical discussion which addresses evaluation criteria appropriate to the Domain for which the proposal is being submitted. Please go to the Domain Proposal Specifications which includes a list of the specific evaluation criteria for each Domain. The offeror shall further state that no deviations or exceptions to the Statement of Work (SOW) are taken.

L.11 PAST PERFORMANCE INFORMATION

Offerors shall submit the following information (original and 3 copies) as part of their proposal for both the offeror and proposed major subcontractors. A Past Performance proposal must be submitted for each Domain for which the offeror is submitting a proposal.

  1. A list of the last five (5) contracts and subcontracts completed (most relevant or most related) during the past three years and all contracts and subcontracts currently in process. Reference contracts and subcontracts completed during the past three years and include recently completed and ongoing work directly related to the requirements of this acquisition. Contracts listed may include those entered into by the Federal Government, agencies of State and local governments and commercial customers. Offerors that are newly formed entities without prior contracts should list contracts and subcontracts as required for all key personnel. Include the following information for each contract and subcontract:
    1. Name of contracting activity
    2. Contract number
    3. Contract type
    4. Total contract value
    5. Contract work
    6. Contracting Officer and telephone number
    7. Program Manager and telephone number
    8. Administrative Contracting Officer, if different from item f, and telephone number
    9. List of major subcontracts
  2. The offeror should provide information on problems encountered on the contracts and subcontracts identified in (1) above and corrective actions taken to resolve those problems. Offerors should not provide general information on their performance on the identified contracts. General performance information will be obtained from the references.
  3. The offeror may describe any quality awards or certifications that may indicate the offeror possesses a high-quality process for developing and producing the product or service required. Identify what segment of the company (one division or the entire company) that received the award or certification. Describe when the award or certification was bestowed. If the award or certification is over three years old, present evidence that the qualifications still apply.
  4. Each offeror will be evaluated on his/her performance under existing and prior contracts for similar products or services. Performance information will be used for both responsibility determinations and as an evaluation factor against which offeror's relative rankings will be compared to assure best value to the Government. The Government will focus on information that demonstrates quality of performance relative to the size and complexity of the procurement under consideration. References other than those identified by the offeror may be contacted by the Government with the information received used in the evaluation of the offeror's past performance.
  5. The offeror must provide related past performance of the proposed Project Director. Reference contracts and subcontracts completed during the past three years and include recently completed and ongoing work directly related to the requirements of this acquisition.

    The attached Past Performance Questionnaire and Performance Form shall be completed by those organizations listed in (1) above. The evaluation forms shall be completed and forwarded directly to:

    Sharon Williams
    Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
    Division of Contracts Management
    540 Gaither Road
    Rockville, Maryland 20850
    FAX: 301-427-1740

    Evaluation forms must be received by the date and time listed in order to be included in the review process. It is the responsibility of the offeror to ensure that these documents are forwarded to the Contracting Officer.

L.12 SMALL DISADVANTAGED BUSINESS PARTICIPATION PLAN:

In accordance with FAR Part 15.304(c)4, the extent of participation of Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) concerns in performance of the contract shall be evaluated in unrestricted acquisitions expected to exceed a total estimated cost of $550,000 ($1,000,000 for construction) subject to certain limitations (see FAR 19.201 and 19.1202).

A. All offerors, regardless of size, shall submit the following information in original and 2 copies for each Domain for which the offeror is submitting a proposal.

A plan on the extent of participation of Small Disadvantaged Business concerns in performance of the contract. Participation in performance of the contract includes the work expected to be performed by SDB concern(s). This can include SDB (as prime contractor), joint ventures, teaming arrangements, and subcontracts. Include the following information in SDB participation plans:
  1. The extent of an offeror's commitment to use SDB concerns. Commitment should be as specific as possible, i.e., are subcontract arrangements already in place, letters of commitment, etc. Enforceable commitments will be weighted more heavily than non-enforceable ones.
  2. Specifically identify the SDB concerns with point of contact and phone number.
  3. The complexity and variety of the work SDB concerns are to perform.
  4. Realism for the use of SDB in the proposal.
  5. Past performance of the Offeror in complying with subcontracting plans for SDB concerns.
  6. Targets expressed as dollars and percentage of total contract value for each participating SDB; which will be incorporated into and become part of any resulting contract.
  7. The extent of participation of SDB concerns in terms of the total acquisition.

B. SDB participation information will be used for both responsibility determinations and as an evaluation factor against which offeror's relative rankings will be compared to assure the best value to the Government. The Government will focus on information that demonstrates realistic commitments to use SDB concerns relative to the size and complexity of the acquisition under consideration. The Government is not required to contact all references provided by the offeror. Also, references other than those identified by the offeror may be contacted by the Government to obtain additional information that will be used in the evaluation of the offeror's commitment to SDB participation.

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