Bradley attorney Aron Beezley was quoted in Law360 on a number of important legal decisions that have impacted government contracts law this year. One decision from the GOA sustained a protest related to an OTA (Other Transaction Authority) deal. The decision reinforced for agencies and contractors that the claimed misuse of an OTA is an issue open to review in certain circumstances, and that agencies must be careful to fully follow the terms of their OTAs.
“That’s a particularly noteworthy decision — first and foremost you don't see very many decisions involving OTA, so that in and of itself caught the procurement community's eye," Beezley said. “Also, OTA is being used with increasing frequency, so I think it's very likely we'll see more bid protest decisions involving it.”
In another ruling, the Federal Circuit declined to overturn the U.S. General Services Administration's imposition of a rent cap on a leasing proposal for the FBI's Cleveland field office. A particular aspect of the ruling has set alarm bells ringing for a number of government contracts attorneys — specifically, a finding that claims involving 40 U.S. Code Section 3307, a statute that requires congressional approval before appropriations can be made for certain federal construction and leasing contracts, cannot be heard by the Court of Federal Claims.
"Any time that the Federal Circuit addresses jurisdictional issues with respect to bid protests or contract claims, it's a big deal [and] when the Federal Circuit's opinion was first issued in that case, some commentators were concerned that the decision would have the effect of narrowing the Court of Federal Claims' bid protest jurisdiction," Beezley said. "But I think the prevailing view now is that the Federal Circuit's holding in that case applies to a very, very narrow set of circumstances."
The complete article, “Top Gov’t Contracts Cases Of 2018 So Far,” appeared in Law360 on July 17, 2018.