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    The Coast Guard's market research indicates that the contractor that provides DoD's software as a service would and perhaps should provide the Coast Guard's system. If the Coast Guard were to procure the requirement using full and open competition and contract with a firm other than the one with which DoD contracts, then the Coast Guard would incur substantial costs to ensure thatt the two systems are interoperable. That is to say, the cost of creating an interface between the two systems would be substantial and not likely recovered via competition. Also, the effort of creating an interface would create unacceptable delays. In fact, there is considerable uncertainty as to whether a different contractor would be able to create an interface at all, even though all firms that responded to the Coast Guard's RFI tout their interoperability with other vendors' systems. Assume we meet (A) & (B) of FAR Part 6.302-1(a)(2)(iii). The question is whether the Coast Guard could treat its own requirement may be "deemed to be available only from the original source" (the DoD's contractor), and treat its own sole source contract with the DoD's contractor as a "follow-on contract." FAR Part 6.302-1(a)(2)(iii). I've done research, and I'll continue with the research, but I've only found instances in which "follow-on contracts" are within the same agency with the agency's existing contractor. Are there examples in which a follow-on contract has been awarded by a different agency than awarded the original contract? FAR Part 6.302-1(b)(Application) doesn't use words that limit use of the authority to within one agency. Thanks.


    Answer

    There was a GAO study done several years ago (B-127655, 23 Apr 986), which states that follow on contracts need to include all planned continuation years in the contracting cycle (see page 49).  In other words, this is the reason that you probably can't find examples where one service issues a contract and another service issues a follow on contract...because the original agency has to include all planned continuation years in their original contract.

    You need to confer with your legal counsel as to whether the CG legal staff wants the CO to issue a J&A for a sole source procurement to the same contractor as is on the DoD contract or compete commercially since software is a commercial product. 
       


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