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  • Question

    When you write a task order against an established BPA that includes options, do you have to include the options clauses in the task order itself to exercise options? (if the option clauses are not included in the task order can you exercise options based off of the original BPA terms and conditions that include options?)


    Answer

    1. The FAR and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Acquisition Regulation (VAAR) references quoted below in pertinent part are applicable to this response.

    FAR 13.303-1 – General
    (a) A blanket purchase agreement (BPA) is a simplified method of filling anticipated repetitive needs for supplies or services by establishing “charge accounts’’ with qualified sources of supply.

    FAR 13.303-2 -- Establishment of BPAs
    (a) The following are circumstances under which contracting officers may establish BPAs:
      (3) The use of this procedure would avoid the writing of numerous purchase orders.

    FAR 13.303-3 -- Preparation of BPAs
    (a) The following terms and conditions are mandatory:
      (1) Description of agreement. A statement that the supplier shall furnish supplies or services, described in general terms, if and when requested by the contracting officer (or the authorized representative of the contracting officer) during a specified period and within a stipulated aggregate amount, if any.

    FAR 13.303-7 -- Completion of BPAs
    An individual BPA is considered complete when the purchases under it equal its total dollar limitation, if any, or when its stated time period expires.

    VAAR 801.602-77 -- Processing solicitations and contract documents for legal or technical review – general
    (a) Under 801.602-70 through 801.602-76, before taking contract action, a contracting officer must ensure that any required legal or technical review or concurrence is complete. Contracting officers shall not award or sign contracts, task or delivery orders, blanket purchase agreements, or contract modifications prior to receipt of the final legal and technical review.

    2. As indicated by FAR 13.303-1(a), FAR 13.303-2(a)(3), FAR 13.303-3(a)(1) and FAR 13.303-7, a BPA is a written instrument negotiated between the contracting activity and a qualified contractor which provides for a simplified method of filling anticipated repetitive needs for supplies or services during a specified period of time, with the objective of avoiding writing numerous, individual purchase orders. Therefore, the BPA would naturally include the terms and conditions that are applicable to all task orders issued under the BPA, thereby precluding the need to repeat these common terms and conditions in each task order. Consequently, pursuant to VAAR 801.602-77(a), the BPA is subject to any required legal or technical review or concurrence and not the individual task orders issued under the BPA.

    3. As stipulated in this inquiry, the BPA in question includes the clauses FAR 52.217-8 -- Option to Extend Services and FAR 52.217-9 -- Option to Extend the Term of the Contract. Therefore, based on the above, and similar to other terms and conditions that are applicable to all orders issued under the BPA, these option clauses would not be included in the individual task orders. Instead, either of these clauses would be used as appropriate to extend the time period for final completion of the BPA as contemplated by FAR 13.303-7, thereby permitting the issuance of additional task orders during the extended BPA period of performance.


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