By: Edward T. DeLisle

Here we are and it’s already the middle of February, 2014. We’ve gotten off to a bit of a slow start on our blog this year, but that’s about to change. The delay in posting new information has, in large part, been due to the tremendous up-tick of activity in the world of federal government contracts. We have been incredibly busy trying cases, attempting to settle others and traveling across the country speaking about issues of importance in our industry. In an effort to keep all of you abreast of what’s hot in our world (and yours) and, at the same time, keep on top of things in-house, we decided that we are going to begin using our blog to tell you about what we are seeing first hand. We have certainly done this from time to time in the past, but we intend to more frequently use the blog to share our first-hand experiences with the idea of teaching you about federal government contracting in a different, more personal way. You will still see articles that discuss cases that are not our own and regulatory changes that we feel you should know and understand, but an added emphasis on what we’re not just seeing, but actually experiencing, is something you will see a lot more this year.

So, what have we been up to most recently? Glad you asked. I’m actually on a plane right now returning from sunny Orlando, where Michael Payne and I presented at the National 8(a) Association’s Winter Conference. The conference was very well attended and the staff of the Association did a great job taking care of all that participated. While at the conference, Michael and I spoke about how contractors can enhance their ability to obtain government contracts through effective proposal preparation and teaming. I also spoke to the group about the SBA’s Mentor-Protege Program and the changes that are likely to be seen later this year. I was able to speak to the attendees about the changing economic climate in 2014 and what to expect in the world of federal government contracts this year based upon what we learned from 2013. If anyone has any questions about the topics that we discussed, please let us know. Next from us on the speaking circuit will be the Associated General Contractors National Conference in Las Vegas, where I’ll be providing the group with a rundown of the hot topics to watch for in 2014 when it comes to federal government contracting.

From a substantive standpoint, Michael and I have been dealing with a plethora of sticky issues. Those issues include: what constitutes a constructive change? When under the law can specifications be deemed defective? Under what circumstances can a termination for default be converted to a termination for convenience? Can an established small business concern successfully avoid a finding of affiliation where the principal of that concern was a former employee of another company that it does occasional business with and is no longer small? These and many other issues are those that we will discuss on the blog in the coming year. We look forward to sharing our experiences with you and hope that you will provide feedback in return. If there are issues of importance to you that you’d like us to discuss as part of this forum, please let us know. We would like to make our blog as interactive as possible to make your experience as worthwhile as possible. Thanks for reading and hold on tight for all the possibilities that 2014 has to offer!

Edward T. DeLisle is a Partner in the firm and a member of the Federal Contracting Practice Group.