Acquisition Policy Flash! 18-15 - Office of Acquisition and Logistics (OAL)
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Acquisition Policy Flash! 18-15

What's Changed?

Class Deviation from FAR 19.502-2, Total Small Business Set-Aside

Purpose:  To issue the subject Class Deviation. This Class Deviation allows the contracting officer to follow tiered evaluation procedures, if permitted in the solicitation; and not require the solicitation to be cancelled and resolicited.

FAR Part Affected:  FAR 19.502-2

Effective Date:  March 22, 2018

Background:  The Procurement Policy Memorandum (PPM) 2018-04 “Guidance and Procedures regarding use of Tiered Evaluations (Cascading) for use in solicitations set-aside in accordance with the VA Rule of Two“ was developed to provide guidance and standardized procedures for the use of tiered evaluations (also called cascading) in solicitations for single or multiple award requirements by providing clear procedures and required solicitation provisions.  The goal of the PPM is to minimize delays in the re-solicitation process that are incurred subsequent to application of the VA Rule of Two at either the Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) or Veteran-Owned Small Business (VOSB) priority tiers within a single synopsized solicitation.  It will also streamline the process of satisfying VA’s obligation under 38 U.S.C. § 8127 when viable offers are not received at the SDVOSB or VOSB priority tiers within a single synopsized procurement.  The current language in the FAR limits the effectiveness of the PPM by requiring the contracting officer to withdraw the set-aside and resolicit the requirement if no acceptable offers are received from responsible small business concerns.  Deviation from the current language will give the contracting officer the option to follow the tiered evaluations procedures and proceed to the next eligible tier in the evaluation process, if permitted in the solicitation.

Applicability:  The class deviation applies to all competitive procurements using tiered evaluations.  The use of tiered evaluations is not mandatory.

Action Required:  Heads of the Contracting Activity (HCAs) and contracting officers shall implement the tiered evaluation approach in accordance with PPM 2018-04 and this Class Deviation from FAR 19.502-2

Additional Information:  Direct questions or concerns to the Procurement Policy and Warrant Management Service (003A2A) via email at or (202) 632-5288.