29 CFR § 4.107 - Federal contracts.

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§ 4.107 Federal contracts.

(a) Section 2(a) of the Act covers contracts (and any bid specification therefor) “entered into by the United States” and section 2(b) applies to contracts entered into “with the Federal Government.” Within the meaning of these provisions, contracts entered into by the United States and contracts with the Federal Government include generally all contracts to which any agency or instrumentality of the U.S. Government becomes a party pursuant to authority derived from the Constitution and laws of the United States. The Act does not authorize any distinction in this respect between such agencies and instrumentalities on the basis of their inclusion in or independence from the executive, legislative, or judicial branches of the Government, the fact that they may be corporate in form, or the fact that payment for the contract services is not made from appropriated funds. Thus, contracts of wholly owned Government corporations, such as the Postal Service, and those of nonappropriated fund instrumentalities under the jurisdiction of the Armed Forces, or of other Federal agencies, such as Federal Reserve Banks, are included among those subject to the general coverage of the Act. (Brinks, Inc. v. Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, 466 F. Supp. 116 (D DC 1979); 43 Atty. Gen. Ops. ___ (September 26, 1978).) Contracts with the Federal Government and contracts entered into “by the United States” within the meaning of the Act do not, however, include contracts for services entered into on their own behalf by agencies or instrumentalities of other Governments within the United States, such as those of the several States and their political subdivisions, or of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, or American Samoa.

(b) Where a Federal agency exercises its contracting authority to procure services desired by the Government, the method of procurement utilized by the contracting agency is not controlling in determining coverage of the contract as one entered into by the United States. Such contracts may be entered into by the United States either through a direct award by a Federal agency or through the exercise by another agency (whether governmental or private) of authority granted to it to procure services for or on behalf of a Federal agency. Thus, sometimes authority to enter into service contracts of the character described in the Act for and on behalf of the Government and on a cost-reimbursable basis may be delegated, for the convenience of the contracting agency, to a prime contractor which has the responsibility for all work to be done in connection with the operation and management of a Federal plant, installation, facility, or program, together with the legal authority to act as agency for and on behalf of the Government and to obligate Government funds in the procurement of all services and supplies necessary to carry out the entire program of operation. The contracts entered into by such a prime contractor with secondary contractors for and on behalf of the Federal agency pursuant to such delegated authority, which have such services as their principal purpose, are deemed to be contracts entered into by the United States and contracts with the Federal Government within the meaning of the Act. However, service contracts entered into by State or local public bodies with purveyors of services are not deemed to be entered into by the United States merely because such services are paid for with funds of the public body which have been received from the Federal Government as a grant under a Federal program. For example, a contract entered into by a municipal housing authority for tree trimming, tree removal, and landscaping for an urban renewal project financed by Federal funds is not a contract entered into by the United States and is not covered by the Service Contract Act. Similarly, contracts let under the Medicaid program which are financed by federally-assisted grants to the States, and contracts which provide for insurance benefits to a third party under the Medicare program are not subject to the Act.