13 CFR § 121.1204 - What are the procedures for requesting and granting waivers?
(a) Waivers for classes of products.
(1) SBA may, at its own initiative, examine a class of products for possible waiver of the Nonmanufacturer Rule.
(2) Any interested person, business, association, or Federal agency may submit a request for a waiver for a particular class of products. Requests should be addressed or hand-carried to the Director, Office of Government Contracting, Small Business Administration, 409 3rd Street SW., Washington, DC 20416.
(3) Requests for a waiver of a class of products need not be in any particular form, but should include a statement of the class of products to be waived, the applicable NAICS code, and detailed information on the efforts made to identify small business manufacturers or processors for the class.
(4) If SBA decides that there are small business manufacturers or processors in the Federal procurement market, it will deny the request for waiver, issue notice of the denial, and provide the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of the sources found. If SBA does not initially confirm the existence of small business manufacturers or processors in the Federal market, it will:
(i) Publish notices in the Commerce Business Daily and the Federal Register seeking information on small business manufacturers or processors, announcing a notice of intent to waive the Nonmanufacturer Rule for that class of products and affording the public a 15-day comment period; and
(ii) If no small business sources are identified, publish a notice in the Federal Register stating that no small business sources were found and that a waiver of the Nonmanufacturer Rule for that class of products has been granted.
(5) An expedited procedure for issuing a class waiver may be used for emergency situations, but only if the contracting officer provides a determination to the Director, Office of Government Contracting that the procurement is proceeding under the authority of FAR § 6.302–2 (48 CFR 6.302–2) for “unusual and compelling urgency,” or provides a determination materially the same as one of unusual and compelling urgency. Under the expedited procedure, if a small business manufacturer or processor is not identified by a PASS search, the SBA will grant the waiver for the class of products and then publish a notice in the Federal Register. The notice will state that a waiver has been granted, and solicit public comment for future procurements.
(6) The decision by the Director, Office of Government Contracting to grant or deny a waiver is the final decision by the Agency.
(7) A waiver of the Nonmanufacturer Rule for classes of products has no specific time limitation. SBA will, however, periodically review existing class waivers to the Nonmanufacturer Rule to determine if small business manufacturers or processors have become available to participate in the Federal market for the waived classes of products and the waiver should be terminated.
(i) Upon SBA's receipt of evidence that a small business manufacturer or processor exists in the Federal market for a waived class of products, the waiver will be terminated by the Director, Office of Government Contracting. This evidence may be discovered by SBA during a periodic review of existing waivers or may be brought to SBA's attention by other sources.
(ii) SBA will announce its intent to terminate a waiver for a class of products through the publication of a notice in the Federal Register, asking for comments regarding the proposed termination.
(iii) Unless public comment reveals that no small business manufacturer or processor in fact exists for the class of products in question, SBA will publish a final Notice of Termination in the Federal Register.
(b) Individual waivers for specific solicitations.
(1) A contracting officer's request for a waiver of the Nonmanufacturer Rule for specific solicitations need not be in any particular form, but must, at a minimum, include:
(i) A definitive statement of each specific item sought to be waived and justification as to why the specific item is required;
(ii) The proposed solicitation number, NAICS code, dollar amount of the procurement, dollar amount of the item(s) for which a waiver is sought, and a brief statement of the procurement history;
(iii) A determination by the contracting officer that no small business manufacturer or processor reasonably can be expected to offer a product or products meeting the specifications (including period of performance) required by a particular solicitation. For a multiple item procurement, a contracting officer must determine that no small business manufacturer or processor reasonably can be expected to offer each item for which a waiver is sought. Include a narrative describing market research and supporting documentation; and
(2) Unless an agency has justified a brand-name acquisition, the market research conducted to support the waiver request should be tailored to attract the attention of potential small business manufacturers or processors, not resellers or distributors.
(3) Requests should be addressed to the Director, Office of Government Contracting, Small Business Administration, 409 3rd Street, SW., Washington, DC 20416.
(4) SBA will examine the contracting officer's determination and any other information it deems necessary to make an informed decision on the individual waiver request.
(i) If SBA's research verifies that no small business manufacturers or processors exist for the item, the Director, Office of Government Contracting will grant an individual, one-time waiver.
(ii) If a small business manufacturer or processor is found for the product in question, the Director, Office of Government Contracting will deny the request.
(iii) Where an agency requests a waiver for multiple items, SBA may grant a waiver for all items requested, deny a waiver for all items requested, or grant a waiver for some but not all of the items requested. SBA's determination will specifically identify the items for which a waiver is granted, and the procuring agency must then identify the specific items for which the waiver applies in its solicitation.
(iv) The Director, Office of Government Contracting's decision to grant or deny a waiver request represents the final agency decision by SBA.
(5) A nonmanufacturer rule waiver for a specific solicitation expires one year after SBA's determination to grant the waiver. This means that contract award must occur within one year of the date SBA granted the waiver. Where a contract is not awarded within one year, the procuring agency must come back to SBA with revised market research requesting that the waiver (or waivers in the case of a multiple item procurement) be extended.