How Cash-in-lieu Opt-Outs Increase Costs for Federal Contractors
- On Dec 14th, the IRS released final rules shedding light on earlier ACA provisions (July 2016). However, it excludes updated language on the complex and controversial “opt-out arrangement” provision, leaving in place earlier guidance (Dec. 2015).
Everything Federal Contractors Need to Know About The Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order
- On Oct. 24, 2016, a TX judge granted a preliminary injunction blocking most of the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order. Most notably the “Blacklisting Rule” requiring federal contractors to disclose labor law violations for the past three years. The injunction does not affect the rule’s pay transparency or independent contractor status notification provisions.
The Government Contractor’s Guide to Service Contract Act (SCA) Compliance
- Being a government contractor has always been complicated, but in the last few years, it seems as though the government is almost determined to make it harder than ever. There is no better evidence of this than the Department of Labor’s (DOL) new commitment to Service Contract Act compliance reporting.
- The previous year’s stats showed that 78% of contractors audited were found to be non-compliant. It is no wonder that random audits (which almost never happened before) are now ne Read More
How “No Change” to the SCA Health & Welfare Benefit Rate Impacts Government Contractors
- On 7/29/2016 the Department of Labor announced that they would not be raising the rate for Service Contract Act (SCA) Health and Welfare Fringe Benefits, keeping it at $4.27 per hour. A drastic departure from the previous two years 2013-2015 where the hourly fringe rate has climbed 12% (46 cents).
- Fringe Rate Fact: from 2007 to 2013, the average yearly fringe rate increase was 9 cents.
- To put it in perspective, the DOL has increased fringe rates every year for more than 20 years. Read More
Three Common SCA Compliance Stumbling Blocks
- SCA compliance seems pretty straightforward. You have your wage determinations, and you classify your employees and pay them accordingly. But if it was so simple, why are suspensions and debarments up a combined 160% since 2010 and 78% of contractors audited in 2014 were found to be non-compliant?
SCA Compliance Checklist Part 6: Subcontractor Compliance
- Government contracts without subcontractors would be like a rock band without a drummer. Not just because of the savings and ease they can provide a contractor, but because the government pretty much requires the use of them on contracts. (more…)
SCA Compliance Checklist Part 4: Base Wages
- If you look at a list of base rates for a contract, it seems simple enough. You classify a worker by their labor category/skill level, and then pay them the appropriate wage. But if you have been in government contracting before, very few thing are that simple- including base wages. (more…)
SCA Compliance Checklist Part 3: Labor Categories
- Labor Categories seem like a simple enough idea. The contract defines all the different tasks to be performed on that job. (i.e) how much to pay a person per hour for completing a set task.
SCA Compliance Checklist Part 2: Pricing
- Pricing has never been easy for the person who bids contracts. Their educated guess can be the difference between a no profit or low-profit job. In some cases (bidding to high) might cost the job itself. And lately, Government contracting has only been getting more difficult. (more…)
SCA Compliance Checklist Part 1: Compliance Management
- If you looked at all the day-to-day aspects of your compliance management, would you feel confident saying, "I'd be okay if the Department of Labor (DOL) audited my business"? Would you bet the financial health of your business on it? (more…)
Contractor’s Guide to ACA
As if government contracting weren't complicated enough already, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) places additional pressure on contractors (cost increases and new compliance requirements) which ultimately affects their bottom lines. This Contractor's guide to ACA provides an overview of the new ACA laws along with insights on how these changes affect contractors. (more…)<Read More
Living In An LPTA (Lowest Price Technically Acceptable) World
by Paul Verdile, Senior Government Contracting Benefits and Compliance (SCA / DBA) Specialist at Axim Fringe Solutions Group Market Connections and Deltek/Centurion Research Solutions released a report (Oct. 2013) on the impact Lowest Price TechnicRead More
Health Plan Opt-outs, SCA Fringe Rate Payments, and the ACA
Last November, federal regulators issued a new regulation, IRS Reg 1.5000A-3(e), for amounts paid by employers to employees who opt-out of the employer’s health plan be treated as additional employee contributions under the affordability component of the ACA’s employer mandate rules. Specifically, the reg provides that amounts made available under a cafeteria plan are treated as employer contributions for affordability purposes only if the amountsRead More
Are Your Wrap Rates Killing Your LPTA Efforts and Contract Profitability?
by Paul Verdile, Senior Government Contracting Benefits and Compliance (SCA / DBA) Specialist at Axim Fring A report (Oct. 2013) by Market Connections and Centurion Research Solutions titledThe New Reality: The impact of LPTA Procurements on Government Contracts and Solutions polled 375 government contractors and 360 civilian and defense decision-makers on Lowest PriRead More