Does FAR 19.203 (d) supersede the need to follow the FAR requirements under the respective subparts for the various socioeconomic groups? For example, if I have two capable WOSBs that respond to a SSN but the requirement is not under one of the NAICS codes that are considered underrepresented, can I defer to FAR 19.203(d) to do a WOSB set-aside since I have established the rule of two and my agency is short of its WOSB goal without consideration for the NAICS?
This response is based on the information provided. We suggest you discuss with your contracting team, program manager and/or legal department as appropriate.
"FAR19.1505 Set-aside procedures.
(a) The contracting officer-
(1) Shall comply with 19.203 before deciding to set aside an acquisition under the WOSB Program..."
FAR subpart 19.15 states you "may" set aside (emphasis ours) under the stated circumstances.
FAR 19.203 does not state an order of precedence among small business programs in determining which category one should make an award.