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    Do we have to post this to GPE or FBO or can we solicit orally. Sorry if this is an easy question, we seem to have to schools of thought on this.


    Answer

     
    FAR 5.101 Methods of disseminating information provides guidance for synopsizing in Governmentwide point of entry (GPE) when expected contract action is to exceed $25,000; and public posting when expected action is to exceed $15,000.  FAR Part 5-Publicizing Contract Actions does not provide criteria for publicizing requirements that are under $15,000.  However, FAR 5.101(a)(2)(ii) states that, if posting is being considered, the contracting officer, need not comply with the display requirements of this section when the exemptions at 5.202(a)(1), (a)(4) through (a)(9) apply, when oral solicitations are used.

    You state your requirement is under $5,000, but there is no indication that the requirement will be met via an existing contract or through use of required sources of supply.  Since your requirement is under $5,000, the policy at FAR 13.003 states,  if no other existing contract or required sources will be used, agencies shall use simplified acquisition procedures when supplies do not exceeding the simplified acquisition threshold (SAT) or $150,000.

    Although one primary purpose of publicizing under FAR Part 5 is to increase competition, when using simplified acquisition procedures, guidance at FAR 13.106-1(b)(1) states, “For purchases not exceeding the simplified acquisition threshold, contracting officers may solicit from one source if the contracting officer determines that the circumstances of the contract action deem only one source reasonably available (e.g., urgency, … brand name or industrial mobilization).  FAR 13.1006-1(b)(3), states to “See 5.102(a)(6) for the requirement to post the brand name justification or documentation.  Of course, that would be used, if the solicitation is going to be posted.
    Further at 13.106-1(c) Soliciting orally, states the contracting officer shall solicit orally if the acquisition does not exceed SAT, if oral solicitation is more efficient than the electronic alternatives and notice is not required under 5.101, which is addressed in the first paragraph of this response. 

    Again, a primary purpose of publicizing is to maximize competition by following the guidance at FAR Part 6-Competition Requirements; however, FAR 6.001 Applicability states that this part applies to all acquisitions except contracts awarded using the simplified acquisition procedures of Part 13, unless the requirement is sole source of commercial items under Subpart 13.5.  While your requirement may be for a commercial item, according to your background information it does not meet the criteria at Subpart 13.5 and therefore would be exempt from FAR Part 6.

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