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  • Question

    Do you have a guide or handbook that covers Government -Contractor relations that I can provide to our military supervisors so they know how to work with contractors? I've found some on line but they are dated.


    Answer

    It seems the issue is that an on-site supervisor of the requiring activity is not clear on the proper way to interact (or more actually, avoid interacting) with a non-personal services contractor. You would like to provide basic written guidance that prescribes proper roles and relationships. Here are a few that may help:

    FAR 1.602-2: Describes how the contracting officer and COR are the only Government employees authorized to interact with the Contractor on matters pertaining to the terms and conditions of the contract.

    FAR 37.104(d)(6): Explains how Government direction or interaction with Contractor employees is appropriate for personal services contracts. By clear implication, direction/interaction is not appropriate for any other type of contract. 

    COR Handbook: Section 1.3 states "The COR is the eyes and ears of the Contracting Officer." In other words, nobody else is. Section 6.10 discusses unauthorized commitments with the intent to prevent anyone other than the contracting officer from doing or saying anything that could be construed as providing inappropriate direction to the contractor. That section goes on to state: "CORs are reminded that they, or any unwarranted government official [italics added], may be financially obligated for any costs or damages incurred as a result of their directing contractor performance beyond the scope of their authority." Perhaps that caveat will be sufficiently convincing. Seemingly innocuous directions to a contractor could create an out-of-scope result.

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