Procurement Notice

December 13, 1999


PURPOSE: To identify a FAR exception to NASA's prohibition against requesting information other than cost or pricing data in a solicitation when a firm-fixed-price competition is involved.

BACKGROUND: The NFS coverage at 1815.403-3(b) prohibits requesting information other than cost or pricing data in the solicitation when a competitive firm-fixed-price acquisition is involved. However, FAR 22.1103 requires the provision at 52.222-46, Evaluation of Compensation for Professional Employees, be inserted in solicitations for negotiated service contracts when the contract amount is expected to exceed $500,000 and the service to be provided will require meaningful numbers of professional employees. This provision requires offerors to provide certain information that is considered to be information other than cost or pricing data, and it applies to competitive firm-fixed-price acquisitions.

REGULATION: Changes are made in Part 1815 as set forth in the enclosed replacement pages.

REPLACEMENT PAGES: You may use the enclosed pages to replace 1815:17 and 1815:18.

REGULATORY COMPLIANCE: This PN was published as a final rule in the Federal Register (64 FR 69415-69416, December 13, 1999).

EFFECTIVE DATE: This PN is effective as dated and shall remain in effect until canceled or superseded.

HEADQUARTERS CONTACT: Joseph Le Cren, Code HK, (202) 358-0444; email:


R. Scott Thompson
Director, Contract Management Division


(a) NASA has waived the requirement for the submission of cost or pricing data when contracting with the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC). This waiver applies to the CCC and its subcontractors. The CCC will provide assurance of the fairness and reasonableness of the proposed price. This assurance should be relied on; however, contracting officers shall ensure that the appropriate level of information other than cost or pricing data is submitted by subcontractors to support any required proposal analysis, including a technical analysis and a cost realism analysis. The CCC also will provide for follow-up audit activity to ensure that any excess profits are found and refunded to NASA.

(b) NASA has waived the requirement for the submission of cost or pricing data when contracting for Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program Phase II contracts. However, contracting officers shall ensure that the appropriate level of information other than cost or pricing data is submitted to determine price reasonableness and cost realism.

1815.403-3 Requiring information other than cost or pricing data.

(b) As indicated in 1815.403-1(b)(1), the adequate price competition exception applies to all competitive acquisitions. For other than firm-fixed price competitions, only the minimum information other than cost or pricing data necessary to ensure price reasonableness and assess cost realism should be requested. For firm-fixed price competitions, the contracting officer shall not request any cost information, except as required by FAR 22.1103, unless proposed prices appear unreasonable or unrealistically low given the offeror's proposed approach and there are concerns that the contractor may default.

1815.403-4 Requiring cost or pricing data.

(b)(2) If a certificate of current cost or pricing data is made applicable as of a date other than the date of price agreement, the agreed date should generally be within two weeks of the date of that agreement.

1815.404 Proposal analysis.

1815.404-2 Information to support proposal analysis.

(a)(1)(A) A field pricing report consists of a technical report and an audit report by the cognizant contract audit activity. Contracting officers should request a technical report from the ACO only if NASA resources are not available.

(B) When the required participation of the ACO or auditor involves merely a verification of information, contracting officers should obtain this verification from the cognizant office by telephone rather than formal request of field pricing support.

(C) When the cost proposal is for a product of a follow-on nature, contracting officers shall ensure that the following items, at a minimum are considered: actuals incurred under the previous contract, learning experience, technical and production analysis, and subcontract proposal analysis. This information may be obtained through NASA resources or the cognizant DCMC ACO or DCAA.

(D) Requests for field pricing assistance may be made on NASA Form 1434, Letter of Request for Pricing-Audit-Technical Evaluation Services.

1815.404-4 Profit.

(b)(1)(i)(a) The NASA structured approach for determining profit or fee objectives, described in 1815.404-471 shall be used to determine profit or fee objectives in the negotiation of contracts greater than or equal to $100,000 that use cost analysis and are:

(1) Awarded on the basis of other than full and open competition (see FAR 6.3);

(2) Awarded under NASA Research Announcements (NRAs) and Announcements of Opportunity (AO's); or

(3) Awarded under the Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) or the Small Business Technology Transfer Research (STTR) programs.

(b) The rate calculated for the basic contract may only be used on actions under a negotiated contract when the conditions affecting profit or fee do not change.

(c) Although specific agreement on the applied weights or values for individual profit or fee factors shall not be attempted, the contracting officer may encourage the contractor to -

(1) Present the details of its proposed profit amounts in the structured approach format or similar structured approach; and

(2) Use the structured approach method in developing profit or fee objectives for negotiated subcontracts.

(ii) The use of the NASA structured approach for profit or fee is not required for:

(a) Architect-engineer contracts;

(b) Management contracts for operation and/or maintenance of Government facilities;

(c) Construction contracts;

(d) Contracts primarily requiring delivery of materials supplied by subcontractors;

(e) Termination settlements; and

(f) Contracts having unusual pricing situations when the procurement officer determines in writing that the structured approach is unsuitable.

(c)(2) Contracting officers shall document the profit or fee analysis in the contract file.

1815.404-470 NASA Form 634.

NASA Form (NF) 634 shall be used in performing the analysis necessary to develop profit or fee objectives.

1815.404-471 NASA structured approach for profit or fee objective.

1815.404-471-1 General.

(a) The structured approach for determining profit or fee objectives (NF 634) focuses on three profit factors:

(1) Performance risk;

(2) Contract type risk including working capital adjustment; and

(3) Other Considerations which may be considered by the contracting officer to account for special circumstances that are not adequately addressed in the performance risk and contract type risk factors.

(b) The contracting officer assigns values to each profit or fee factor; the value multiplied by the base results in the profit/fee objective for that factor. Each factor has a normal value and a designated range of values. The normal value is representative of average conditions on the prospective contract when compared to all goods and services acquired by NASA. The designated range provides values based on above normal or below normal conditions. In the