[Federal Register Volume 67, Number 169 (Friday, August 30, 2002)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 56120-56122]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 02-21868]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION

NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION

48 CFR Parts 2, 12, 13, 19, and 25

[FAC 2001-09; FAR Case 2002-003; Item II]
RIN 9000-AJ40


Federal Acquisition Regulation; Temporary Emergency Procurement 
Authority

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

ACTION: Interim rule with request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Civilian Agency Acquisition Council and the Defense 
Acquisition Regulations Council (Councils) have agreed on an interim 
rule amending the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to implement 
Section 836 of the Fiscal Year 2002 National Defense Authorization Act. 
Section 836 increases the amount of the micro-purchase threshold and 
the simplified acquisition threshold for procurements of supplies or 
services by or for DoD during fiscal years 2002 and 2003, where those 
procurements are to facilitate the defense against terrorism or 
biological or chemical attack against the United States.

DATES: Effective Date: August 30, 2002.
    Comment Date: Interested parties should submit comments to the FAR 
Secretariat at the address shown below on or before October 29, 2002, 
to be considered in the formulation of a final rule.

ADDRESSES: Submit written comments to--General Services Administration, 
FAR Secretariat (MVP), 1800 F Street, NW, Room 4035, Attn: Ms. Laurie 
Duarte, Washington, DC 20405.
    Submit electronic comments via the Internet to_farcase.2002-
003@gsa.gov
    Please submit comments only and cite FAC 2001-09, FAR case 2002-
003, in all correspondence related to this case.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: The FAR Secretariat, Room 4035, GS 
Building, Washington, DC 20405, (202) 501-4755, for information 
pertaining to status or publication schedules. For clarification of 
content, contact Ms. Victoria Moss, Procurement Analyst, at (202) 501-
4764. Please cite FAC 2001-09, FAR case 2002-003.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

A. Background

    This interim rule implements Section 836 of the Fiscal Year 2002 
National Defense Authorization Act (Pub. L. 107-107, 10 U.S.C. 2302 
Note). Section 836 increases the amount of the micro-purchase threshold 
and the simplified acquisition threshold for procurements of supplies 
or services by or for DoD during fiscal years 2002 and 2003, where 
those procurements are to facilitate the defense against terrorism or 
biological or chemical attack against the United States.
    For acquisitions of supplies and services to facilitate the defense 
against terrorism or biological or chemical attack against the United 
States, by or for the Department of Defense, the micro-purchase 
threshold is raised to $15,000 (except for construction subject to the 
Davis-Bacon Act). The simplified acquisition threshold for such 
acquisitions in support of a contingency operation is raised to 
$250,000 inside the United States and $500,000 outside the United 
States.
    Any acquisition by or for the Department of Defense of 
biotechnology supplies or biotechnology services to facilitate the 
defense against terrorism or biological or chemical attack against the 
United States shall be treated as being a procurement of commercial 
items.
    This is not a significant regulatory action and, therefore, was not 
subject to review under Section 6(b) of Executive Order 12866, 
Regulatory Planning and Review, dated September 30, 1993. This rule is 
not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804.

B. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The changes may have a significant economic impact on a substantial 
number of small entities within the meaning of the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq. However, the increased thresholds 
are limited to procurements that are to facilitate the defense against 
terrorism or biological or chemical attack against the United States. 
There are no data available on the number of procurements that will be 
eligible. We expect the increased thresholds to this limited class of 
procurements will apply to a very small number of small entities.
    This interim rule does not impose any data collection requirements 
on small business concerns. The rule does not duplicate, overlap, or 
conflict with other relevant Federal rules. There are no significant 
alternatives to the proposed rule that would accomplish the stated 
beneficial objective.
    The FAR Secretariat has submitted a copy of the Initial Regulatory 
Flexibility

[[Page 56121]]

Analysis to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business 
Administration. Interested parties may obtain a copy from the FAR 
Secretariat. The Councils will consider comments from small entities 
concerning the affected FAR subparts in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 610. 
Interested parties must submit such comments separately and should cite 
5 U.S.C 601, et seq. (FAC 2001-09, FAR case 2002-003), in 
correspondence.

C. Paperwork Reduction Act

    The Paperwork Reduction Act does not apply because the changes to 
the FAR do not impose information collection requirements that require 
the approval of the Office of Management and Budget under 44 U.S.C. 
3501, et seq.

D. Determination To Issue an Interim Rule

    A determination has been made under the authority of the Secretary 
of Defense (DoD), the Administrator of General Services (GSA), and the 
Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration 
(NASA) that urgent and compelling reasons exist to promulgate this 
interim rule without prior opportunity for public comment. This action 
is necessary because the FAR coverage implements Section 836 of the 
Fiscal Year 2002 National Defense Authorization Act, signed on December 
28, 2001, which provides for urgently needed authorities.
    However, pursuant to Public Law 98-577 and FAR 1.501, the Councils 
will consider public comments received in response to this interim rule 
in the formation of the final rule.

List of Subjects in 48 CFR Parts 2, 12, 13, 19, and 25

    Government procurement.

    Dated: August 21, 2002.
AL Matera,
Director, Acquisition Policy Division.


    Therefore, DoD, GSA, and NASA amend 48 CFR parts 2, 12, 13, 19, and 
25 as set forth below:

    1. The authority citation for 48 CFR parts 2, 12, 13, 19, and 25 
continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 40 U.S.C. 486(c); 10 U.S.C. chapter 137; and 42 
U.S.C. 2473(c).

PART 2--DEFINITIONS OF WORDS AND TERMS

    2. Amend section 2.101 by revising the definitions ``Micro-
purchase'', ``Micro-purchase threshold'', and ``Simplified acquisition 
threshold'' to read as follows:


2.101  Definitions.

* * * * *
    Micro-purchase means an acquisition of supplies or services using 
simplified acquisition procedures, the aggregate amount of which does 
not exceed the micro-purchase threshold.
    Micro-purchase threshold means $2,500, except it means--
    (1) $2,000 for construction subject to the Davis-Bacon Act; and
    (2) $15,000 for acquisitions by or for the Department of Defense 
facilitating the defense against terrorism or biological or chemical 
attack as described in 13.201(g), except for construction subject to 
the Davis-Bacon Act.
* * * * *
    Simplified acquisition threshold means $100,000, except that in the 
case of any contract to be awarded and performed, or purchase to be 
made--
    (1) Outside the United States in support of a contingency operation 
(as defined in 10 U.S.C. 101(a)(13)) or a humanitarian or peacekeeping 
operation (as defined in 10 U.S.C. 2302(8) and 41 U.S.C. 259(d)), the 
term means $200,000; or
    (2) To facilitate the defense against terrorism or biological or 
chemical attack against the United States, for acquisitions--
    (i) Inside the United States, by or for the Department of Defense, 
for which award is made and funds are obligated on or before September 
30, 2003, in support of a contingency operation (as defined in 10 
U.S.C. 101(a)(13)), the term means $250,000; or
    (ii) Outside the United States, by or for the Department of 
Defense, for which award is made and funds are obligated on or before 
September 30, 2003, in support of a contingency operation (as defined 
in 10 U.S.C. 101(a)(13)), the term means $500,000.
* * * * *

PART 12--ACQUISITION OF COMMERCIAL ITEMS

    3. Amend section 12.102 by adding paragraph (f) to read as follows:


12.102  Applicability.

* * * * *
    (f) Contracting officers shall treat any acquisition by or for the 
Department of Defense of biotechnology supplies or biotechnology 
services, for use to facilitate the defense against terrorism or 
biological attack against the United States, as an acquisition of 
commercial items. The policies of this part shall apply to such 
acquisitions, including the requirement to use firm-fixed price 
contracts or fixed-price contracts with economic price adjustments. 
Nothing in this paragraph shall preclude a contracting officer from 
treating an acquisition described in this paragraph as one for a non-
commercial item if a determination is made by the contracting officer 
that the purchase cannot be made at a fair and reasonable price using 
the policies of this part. This paragraph applies only when award is 
made and funds are obligated on or before September 30, 2003.

PART 13--SIMPLIFIED ACQUISITION PROCEDURES


13.003   [Amended]

    4. Amend section 13.003 in paragraph (b)(1) by adding ``($15,000 
for acquisitions as described in 13.201(g))'' after ``$2,500''; and in 
paragraph (b)(2) by removing ``$2,500'' and adding ``the micro-purchase 
threshold'' in its place.

    5. Amend section 13.201 by adding paragraph (g) to read as follows:


13.201  General.

* * * * *
    (g) There is a temporary $15,000 micro-purchase threshold for the 
acquisition of supplies or services by or for the Department of Defense 
for which award is made and funds are obligated on or before September 
30, 2003, facilitating the defense against terrorism or biological or 
chemical attack against the United States (see 2.101). Purchases using 
this authority must have a clear and direct relationship to the defense 
against terrorism or biological or chemical attack.

PART 19--SMALL BUSINESS PROGRAMS

    6. Amend section 19.502-1 by revising paragraph (b) to read as 
follows:


19.502-1  Requirements for setting aside acquisitions.

* * * * *
    (b) This requirement does not apply to purchases of $2,500 or less 
($15,000 or less for acquisitions as described in 13.201(g)), or 
purchases from required sources of supply under part 8 (e.g., Federal 
Prison Industries, Committee for Purchase From People Who are Blind or 
Severely Disabled, and Federal Supply Schedule contracts).


19.502-2  [Amended]

    7. Amend section 19.502-2 in the first sentence of paragraph (a) by 
removing ``$2,500,'' and adding ``$2,500 ($15,000 for acquisitions as 
described in 13.202(g)),'' in its place.
    8. Amend section 19.903 by--
    a. Removing the word ``or'' from paragraph (b)(1);

[[Page 56122]]

    b. Removing the period at the end of the sentence in paragraph 
(b)(2) and adding ``; or'' in its place; and
    c. Adding paragraph (b)(3) to read as follows:


19.903  Applicability.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (3) Acquisitions of $15,000 or less facilitating the defense 
against terrorism or biological or chemical attack against the United 
States as described in 13.201(g).

PART 25--FOREIGN ACQUISITION


25.1101   [Amended]

    9. Amend section 25.1101 in the introductory text of paragraph 
(a)(1) by adding ``($15,000 for acquisitions as described in 
13.201(g))'' after ``$2,500''.


25.1103  [Amended]

    10. Amend section 25.1103 in paragraph (a) by removing ``$2,500,'' 
and adding ``$2,500 ($15,000 for acquisitions as described in 
13.201(g)),'' in its place.

[FR Doc. 02-21868 Filed 8-29-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6820-EP-U