PROVIDENCE – The United States has resolved civil claims against a Massachusetts medical device manufacturer for selling Chinese-made products to the federal government that were required by law to have been made in America, announced United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha.
The civil settlement, reached with Zoll Medical Corporation, a supplier of medical devices and related technology that is headquartered in Chelmsford, Massachusetts, follows an investigation into allegations that, between January 2019 and November 2022, Zoll sold electrocardiogram cables (“ECG”), which are used with defibrillators and cardiac monitors, to federal government purchasers, including the U.S. Department of Defense, despite knowing that the cables were manufactured in China, rather than the United States. Under the federal Trade Agreements Act, goods sold to the military or federal government purchasers must be made in America or certain designated foreign countries; China is not such a country. To read more, click here
ROCHESTER, N.Y. — U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that Reginald Cannon, 55, of Rochester, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge David G. Larimer to wire fraud, which carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Richard A. Resnick and Kyle P. Rossi, who are handling the case, stated that Cannon is president of Burnett Process, Inc., a Rochester based company, which, in May 2015, received a five-year contract from the United States Army to produce M98 Gas Particulate Filters. These filters are used by the Department of Defense in a wide range of military systems, such as shelters, mobile hospitals, and US Navy ships, to protect military personnel from chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosives threats. As fresh air is coming into a system, the filters push out potentially toxic substances. If the filters are not functioning properly, contaminants can get in, putting military personnel at risk. The contract, which was signed by Cannon, required that Burnett Process submit a report certifying that the supplier of the filter paper used to manufacture the M98 Filters complied with the material specifications listed in the contract. The contract also required that Burnett Process use one of two companies located in the United States whose filter paper met strict military specifications for such filter paper, or another company if such filter paper was properly tested, passed all the military specifications included in the contract, and was approved by the Army. To read more, click here
These maps show how much funding has been announced for work within states, including a breakdown by category of funding. This total includes “formula” funds allocated directly to states for roads and bridges or water systems, for example, as well as funding for airports, ports and superfund site cleanup. A separate tab showcases specific announced and select awarded funding locations and projects. https://www.whitehouse.gov/build/maps-of-progress/
In one fell swoop, the Court of Federal Claims upended two major governmentwide acquisition contracts from the General Services Administration and almost five years of effort to change the culture of federal contracting.
The Court ruled April 21 that GSA’s interpretation of Section 876 of the 2018 Defense Authorization was too broad as applied to the Polaris small business GWAC. The decision, released publicly last Friday, not only forces GSA to pause its efforts on Polaris, but also make a significant change to its strategy for OASIS+, the follow-on multiple award contract for professional services. To read more, click here
This biennial update describes the status of high-risk areas, outlines actions that are needed to assure further progress, and identifies new high-risk areas needing attention by the executive branch and Congress.
Congress and executive agencies have made substantial progress addressing high-risk issues since the previous High-Risk List update in 2021. Sixteen of 34 high-risk areas improved since 2021. This is the most progress in the 8 years since GAO started rating high-risk areas. Two of the 16 areas are being removed from the list: Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) Insurance Programs and the 2020 Decennial Census. Since our last update, there were approximately $100 billion in financial benefits due to improvements in high-risk areas. To read more, click here
The General Services Administration debuted newly redesigned websites for USA.gov and USA.Gov en Español on Friday, touting upgrades meant to make the websites more user-friendly following the beta testing of new features for the websites. The USA.gov websites, one offered in English and one in Spanish, are meant to be the online “front door” to the government where Americans can come to get information on all government benefits and services, regardless of what department or agency offers it. The agency wrote in its fiscal year 2024 budget justification that the beta sites were “a complete overhaul of public-facing content, enable the development of new interactive tools and guides and are built on more secure and modern infrastructure.” To read more, click here.
It’s been decades since the last time the Defense Department took an in-depth look at how its contract policies affect the financial health the defense industrial base. That long-awaited report is now out. Meanwhile, a separate, outside study is examining what DoD needs to do to speed up its adoption of innovative technologies. To take a deeper look at both of those studies, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin talked with Stephanie Kostro, executive vice president for Policy at the Professional Services Council. To read the full transcript, click here.
A presidential determination (PD) was signed, authorizing the use of Defense Production Act to support the nation’s domestic Printed Circuit Boards (PrCB) and Advanced Packaging industrial base. The PD allows the Department of Defense (DoD) to utilize its Defense Production Act (DPA) Title III authorities to invest in advanced microelectronics capacity and ensure the production of state-of-the-art integrated circuits in the United States. PrCBs are critical components in all electronics used in the national defense, economic, environmental, energy, and healthcare management sectors. Advanced packaging allows multiple devices to be packaged and mounted on a single electronic device. Advances in materials, manufacturing tooling, and process development are imperative in advanced packaging to support rapidly evolving technology and the continuously shrinking feature sizes. Click here to read more.
The U.S. Department of Defense signed a memorandum of understanding with the U.S. General Services Administration to help expedite bringing environmental innovations into the federal marketplace. Under the agreement, GSA will use DoD’s Sustainable Technology Evaluation and Demonstration Program information on product performance and pricing to streamline the acquisition process and make sustainable technology alternatives more readily available to federal agencies. Click here to read more.