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    Who does the FAR/DFAR/AFFAR establish as the Decision authority for a fair opportunity order? By default, based on the FAR and its supplements, is the Contracting Officer the decision authority on any Fair Opportunity order, regardless of dollar value?


    Answer

    The question asks “Who does the FAR/DFAR/AFFAR establish as the Decision authority for a fair opportunity order?  By default, based on the FAR and its supplements, is the Contracting Officer the decision authority on any Fair Opportunity order, regardless of dollar value?”  The background information addresses both FAR Subpart 15.3 and AFFARS Subpart 15.3 Source Selection and FAR 16.505(b) (1) Orders under multiple-award contracts Fair Opportunity.  Based upon my understanding of the question, I have researched it and provide the following information.   My answer supports at the FAR level. 

    FAR 15.303(a) says “Agency heads are responsible for source selection. The contracting officer is designated as the source selection authority (decision authority), unless the agency head appoints another individual for a particular acquisition or group of acquisitions.”  This statement follows the Far convention at FAR 1.108(f).   FAR 15.303 Responsibilities and FAR 15.303(b) (2) (i) Exceptions to the fair opportunity process cites the statutory exceptions identified at FAR Subpart 6.3, Other than Full and Open Competition. There is no indication in the question that these exceptions would apply.

    In the background information the requestor says “ But the ordering procedures in FAR Part 16 specifically exempt fair opportunity orders from the policies/procedures in
    part 15.3”.  FAR 16.505(b) (1) (v) (B) (2) (ii) Exceptions to the fair opportunity process, relates to a written justification requirement if an exception waiver based on FAR Subpart 6.3, is required.  FAR 16.505(b) (1) (v) (B) (2) (ii) (C) Approval identifies the applicable dollar thresholds for approval of the justification.  Again nothing in the question identifies the exceptions rational.  If it did then FAR 16.505(b) (1) (v) (B) (2) (ii) (C) would apply.

    I also researched the
    DFARS Subpart 215.3 and DFARS Subpart/DFARS PGI 216.5.  Both were silent with regards to the specifics of this question.


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