DATE: April 2, 2004

SUBJECT: Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR); Meeting on Draft Government Property Rule

SOURCE: Federal Register, April 2, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 64, page 17583

AGENCIES: Department of Defense (DOD), General Services Administration (GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

ACTION: Notice

SYNOPSIS: DOD, GSA, and NASA are sponsoring a public meeting to discuss potential changes to the FAR regarding government property in the possession of contractors (FAR Part 45, Government Property, and the corresponding clauses in FAR Part 52).

DATES: The meeting will be held April 13, 2004, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

ADDRESSES: The meeting will be held at the Logistics Management Institute, 2000 Corporate Ridge, Room 2056 (DAU 1/2), Second Floor, McLean, VA 22102-7805; general phone: 703-917-9800. To adequately accommodate for space, please RSVP to Tom Ruckdaschel at e-mail: tom.ruckdaschel@osd.mil. Any comments intended to be considered as a public comment must be submitted separately as instructed in any future proposed rule.

The public meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Request for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Tom Ruckdaschel (703-604-6350, x101) at least 5 days prior to the meeting date.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tom Ruckdaschel, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Acquisition, Technology and Logistics), 703-604-6350 x101, or e-mail: tom.ruckdaschel@osd.mil. A copy of the draft document to be discussed at the meeting can be obtained from Michael.Canales@osd.mil, or can be downloaded from http://www.acq.osd.mil/uid/.

SUPPLEMENTAL INFORMATION: DOD, GSA, and NASA have drafted a new approach to government property and will be discussing the potential changes at the public meeting. The draft revisions take a more commercial approach to property stewardship and recordkeeping responsibilities and significantly reduce the number of property clauses in FAR Part 52.

Much of the current FAR language related to property management is over 50 years old, and has been called a "patchwork quilt" of inconsistent, often conflicting, guidance. These requirements are at odds with modern technology and managerial techniques, and cannot be applied easily to modern materials management technology such as Enterprise Resource Planning, relational databases, unique item identification, radio frequency identification, barcoding, and the general trend toward commercialization of components contained within weapons systems. As a result, the outmoded regulations hamper current strategies and methods of contractor oversight.

The new approach combines, in a single contract clause -- new FAR 52.245-1, Government Property -- the requirements of FAR Subpart 45.5, Management of Government Property in the Possession of Contractors, and the following clauses: FAR 52.245-1, Property Records; FAR 52.245-2, Government Property (Fixed-Price Contracts; FAR 52.245-3, Identification of Government Property; FAR 52.245-4, Government-Furnished Property (Short Form); and FAR 52.245-5, Government Property (Cost-Reimbursement, Time-and-Material, or Labor-Hour Contracts). In addition, FAR 52.245-18, Special Test Equipment, and FAR 52.245-19, Government Property Furnished "As Is," would be deleted. Finally, a new property clause, FAR 52.245-4, Government Property (Installation Operations for Commercial Services), would be added. The new property clause is designed for military base and installation level contracts awarded under the procedures in Office of Management and Budget Circular A-76, Performance of Commercial Activities.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Panoptic Enterprises at 703-451-5953 or by e-mail to Panoptic@FedGovContracts.com.

Copyright 2004 by Panoptic Enterprises. All Rights Reserved.

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