A House-passed Defense Dept. authorization bill has two provisions that would alter federal construction contracting policies.
The bill, which the House cleared May 22, includes an amendment that aims to ensure design-build shortlists are short. It requires two-step procurement for federal DB contracts of $1 million or more. Groups including the Design-Build Institute of America and American Institute of Architects backed the provision. They say one-step DB leads to long shortlists, requiring teams to prepare costly proposals while facing long odds of winning the job.
Another amendment, which groups such as the American Subcontractors Association and National Association of Surety Bond Producers backed, aims to curb individual-sureties fraud. ASA says the provision would require such sureties to pledge only assets federal law allows and pledge them to the government. Assets would be put in custody of the Treasury Dept., a federal reserve bank or Treasury-designated depository.