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    My previous question about Amazon purchases is still a little cloudy because of the FAR Part 8 concerning the "Open Market Items." FAR part 8 seems to address the issues of ordering through authorized vendors and dealing with the mandatory screening. Please connect the dots on why a contracting office would order from Amazon if this regulation is in place. I found this definition online concerning open market: Open Market Items In accordance with FAR 8.402(f), for administrative convenience, an ordering activity Contracting Officer may add items not on the GSA Schedule contract , open market items , to a GSA Schedule BPA or an individual task or delivery order only if: All applicable acquisition regulations pertaining to the purchase of the items not on the Schedule contract have been followed (e.g., publicizing (FAR Part 5), competition requirements (FAR Part 6), acquisition of commercial items (FAR Part 12), contracting methods (FAR Parts 13, 14, and 15), and small business programs (FAR Part 19) The ordering activity Contracting Officer has determined the prices for the items not on the Schedule contract are fair and reasonable The items are clearly labeled on the order as items not on the Schedule contract All clauses applicable to items not on the Schedule contract are included in the order The ordering Contracting Officer has determined that the items are within the scope of the Schedule contract. It is important to recognize that GSA has only negotiated prices or determined prices to be fair and reasonable for those supplies and services that are awarded to Schedule contracts. Therefore, the ordering activity must comply with the requirements for full and open competition, by following all applicable acquisition regulations and determining price reasonableness for open market items.


    Answer

    GSA's federal supply schedules are not mandatory sources. Ordering officers are encouraged to use them before going on the open market but are not required to. Please review FAR 8.004.

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